Dissociation : Vol. 5, No. 3, p. 155-158 : The therapist as victim: a preliminary discussion

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Title: Dissociation : Vol. 5, No. 3, p. 155-158 : The therapist as victim: a preliminary discussion
Author: Comstock, Christine M.; Vickery, Diane
Abstract: Increasingly reports are being received from colleagues, supervisees, and consultees from around the country that patients who were severely abused as children and are pathologically dissociated as adults may be increasingly prone to victimize their therapists intentionally. Actions taken by such patients have included the filing of frivolous or malicious complaints or lawsuits, the spreading of rumors about the therapist, harassment of other patients of the therapist, and violation of the therapist's privacy and personal space, among many others. Such behaviors may be in response to patients' own internal distress, to unrecognized complexities within the therapeutic process, to re-enactments, and/or to patients' resistance against focusing on their own issues. The authors contend that although some therapists have behaved inappropriately with their patients, there are identifiable dynamics within the patients and within the therapeutic relationship that could alert the therapist to the potential of destructive acting-out towards the therapist. The purpose of this paper is to acknowledge the phenomenon of therapist victimization, to discuss some of the underlying dynamics, and to begin to address possible preventive measures.
Description: p. 155-158
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1794/1665
Date: 1992-09


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