1st Edition

Self-Harm A Psychotherapeutic Approach

By Fiona Gardner Copyright 2001

    Self-harm is worryingly common in young women, and is often used as a way of easing emotional suffering. Self-Harm: A Psychotherapeutic Approach explores the issues involved from the perspective of a psychoanalytical psychotherapist. Fiona Gardner examines these issues through extensive clinical material and an analysis of the social and cultural influences behind self-harm. This book will be of interest to all those working with those who are harming themselves, including psychotherapists, school counsellors, social workers and mental health clinicians.

    Introduction. Meanings - Conscious Reasoning and Unconscious Motivation. Turning the Anger Inwards - Masochism and Mastery. Pre-disposing Factors in Adolescence Linked to Self-harm. Reversing the Process - From Action to Articulation. The Psychodynamics of the Psychotherapeutic Process with Patients who are Harming Themselves. Speculations on Historical, Cultural and Social Aspects. Concluding Thoughts.


    Fiona Gardner is a psychoanalytic psychotherapist and a training therapist and supervisor. She has been published in leading national and international psychotherapy journals on gender, sexual abuse and psychotherapy training, and has contributed to several books.

    'A clear and sensitive read. We are taken through the book in a logical and easy to follow way ... I would definitely recommend this book to trainees and supervisees and, I would suggest, it should be compulsory reading on training courses. - British Journal of Psychotherapy, 2004