The authors propose to investigate the meaning and purpose of boundaries within and around the therapeutic experience. A boundary is more than a simple line delineating one space from another; it is an entity with properties that demand a response if they are to be negotiated. Boundaries circumscribe a space that can be viewed objectively, or experienced subjectively, as a 'container'. For the uninitiated, this therapeutic container can be difficult to penetrate. Even health professionals such as GPs and psychiatrists often do not know how to access psychotherapy organisations and their referral networks. Also, real constraints on the availability of counselling and psychotherapy within the National Health Service, and the cost of private sector services, may prohibit access to the help being sought. The book explores aspects such as the gradual evolution of therapeutic boundaries in psychodynamic work, boundary development in infancy and childhood, the role of the therapist's mind and the therapeutic setting, confidentiality and issues such as money and time.
Contents1 Why boundaries? Including the historical development of ideas2 Boundaries and containment in child development3 Nuts & Bolts: including assessment, beginning, time, fees4 The containing mind5 Working within organisational settings6 Confidentiality7 Professional boundaries: including training, registration, codes of ethics and good practice8 Endings