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Room for Thought: A Developmental Perspective


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Lecture + Open House

This paper discusses the different ways a developmental point of view enriches and informs our work. It focuses on that aspect of the developmental point of view that has to do with the development of reflective functioning; specifically, how we, as therapists, make room for thinking with both our child and our adult patients. The complex relationship between the development of self/object differentiation and the development of reflective functioning is discussed. The role of therapy in the facilitation of this relationship is illustrated from the therapist’s own experience. In addition, the importance in child therapy of working with the child/parent dynamics as a crucial component of the therapist’s intervention is described. The presentation will include a case example of a child treatment. The work in this case emphasizes the importance of intervening with the family as a way of facilitating the child’s development.

Kate Oram, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst in private practice in New York City. She is on the faculty and a consultant in the New York University Postdoctoral Program in Psychotherapy and Psychoanalysis and a training and supervising analyst at the Contemporary Freudian Society. She has taught and supervised in IPTAR’s Child and Adolescent Program and is a clinical adjunct at Pace University. Dr. Oram’s interest in development and her experience working with children has profoundly influenced her work. Her writings include “A Transitional Space: Involving Parents in the Play Therapy of Their Children and a paper co-authored with five NYU colleagues, “ Collected Stories: Play in Four Acts,” which focuses on the use of “play” in both adult and child psychotherapy.

2 CE Credits for LP, LCSW, LMHC, LCAT