Parental Psychotherapy

Psychological Treatment of Parenthood   

"Parenthood" is a duty, a goal, a highly significant essence in our lives. In every normal parenthood, there are low moments and moments of satisfaction, crisis moments and peak moments. There is concern, joy and sorrow, sometimes in separate periods and sometimes mixed up together. We resolve most of our problems with the help of things we have learned at home, with what we do similarly to, or the opposite of our parents (intentionally or unintentionally).  We learn from books, from friends, from life.

However, sometimes a child's rearing makes us meet with continual frustration, a sense of being unsuccessful, of missing out, of distance or failure. Sometimes we feel stuck or discontented with our parenthood and with the gap between how we wanted to be and how we actually are.  In such a case, we may be able to be assisted by emotional therapy, which is focused on working on the parenthood.

"Parenthood Therapy", according to my definition, is a dynamic therapeutic focus, where a man or woman come for treatment as a couple or alone, in order to work on their parenthood, to delve deeper, to give it room and space for experiencing, for clarification, and to try to make a change and promote development in the parenthood.

In this model, the treatment is focused, seems to be intensive (although the frequency of sessions will be once a week or once every two weeks, according to the matter) and deals with that unique aspect of our identity as adults- parenthood.

In my experience, I sometimes deal with parenthood as an axis within the treatment of an adult person, as a part of a wider picture. However, sometimes people come because of their parental distress, and then the correct and appropriate focus is on the parenthood in itself.
The issue of treating parenthood is one of my ongoing areas of work in actual practice. Concurrently, I have been teaching and writing about the subject in the recent years. Among the publications on the subject: the article published by my colleague, Rafi Yishay, and myself, in the Sichot Journal (Israel Journal of Psychotherapy), in 2006 ("Blocked Parenthood and Actualized Parenthood  Parenthood as an Act of Creation and the Contribution of Dynamic Parent Training with a Psychoanalytic Orientation") and the current articles, that I teach in various forums (see "Parents as Partners in the Therapy Process") as well as "Issues in Working With Parents, a presentation for an animal-assisted therapy conference").

The model, which I am developing, of "Parenthood Therapy" as a therapeutic focus, is now in publication phases in an international journal of psychotherapy, and later on, I will also publish an expanded version in Hebrew here on the site.