The Identification And Interpretation Of Transference

964 WordsApr 8, 20164 Pages
The identification and interpretation of transference is a cornerstone of psychodynamic therapy. Through the linking of the here and now interactions of client and therapist with experiences from the past, transference interpretations can often serve as a valuable tool for insight and change. However, there is a prevailing belief in the mental health community that the interpretation and use of transference in session is only appropriate for stable individuals who are already capable of a certain level of interpersonal functioning. It is, therefore, considered contraindicated for those with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), a pervasive disorder already burdened with limited treatment options and stigma amongst treatment providers. This paper will examine the research behind the perceived risks and benefits of transference interpretations in the treatment of BPD. Transference-focused psychotherapy (TFP) will be highlighted as an example of the clinical utility of transference within an empirically supported BPD psychodynamic treatment. The paper will also include a literature review of the relevant studies, which point to the efficacy and remaining shortcomings of TFP. Finally, the author will review the limitations of the existing research and discuss future directions for study that may further the role of transference in the treatment of BPD. Transference History The concept of transference work being reserved for the interpersonally levelheaded is a recent
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