Guest Blogger



Affect Regulation, Recognition, and Mutuality
by Jessica Benjamin

We may imagine the psychological position of the Third originating in the mutual accommodation, the system of adaptation and fitting (Sander, 2008) between mother and infant that I now call, for simplicity’s sake, the rhythmic Third.

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Sex for Affect Regulation
Temporary Band-Aid or Therapeutic Balm?

For those who struggle with addiction, factors including genetics, epigenetics, and the interuterine environment contribute to their developing this sorry substitute for mature, independent affect regulation. Yet developmental neurobiology points to early relational trauma as the most decisive disrupter of the growing body/brain/mind’s ability to self-regulate.

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Collective Trauma and Communal Affect Regulation

In late September 2001 I sat inside my quiet, private office with a patient I had known for many years.  She looked deeply into my eyes and said: Now the whole world knows what I have felt all my life.  My patient had been subjected to years of physical, sexual and emotional abuse growing up.  And for years she would come to her sessions in various self-states

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Engaging Parts
Vertigo Gets Grounded

When we encounter defenses and entrenched symptoms, The Internal Family Systems (IFS) Model, founded by Richard Schwartz PhD, offers a unique perspective and set of interventions that expand treatment options. Like other modalities that work with self-states, ego-states and parts, IFS emphasizes the normal multiplicity of the mind. What differentiates IFS is its belief in the universal presence of an undamaged, essential Self. In Self, a person has access to qualities such as curiosity, compassion, clarity, connectedness, wisdom and the potential for healing.

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What Are We Talking About When We Talk About Dissociation?

Confused about what people mean when they use the word ‘dissociation’? You’re not alone. Dell (2009) notes that the definition of dissociation “has never suffered from clarity.” Clinicians use the same term to refer to a bewildering array of disparate phenomena.

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How We Know We Are Known

Attunement is a word routinely used by psychotherapists and often parents as well. But as we talk about 'attuning,' we rarely ask: “What is ‘attunement'"? How can we human beings ‘tell’ intuitively that we are being ‘met’ or ‘gotten’ by others?

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