‘Terrors of Growing Old – Ageism in Therapeutic Care with Older People (Paul Terry, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Hertfordshire)

Centre for Psychoanalytic Studies
Friday 25 November 2011
Open Seminar (Southend Campus)
‘Terrors of Growing Old – Ageism in Therapeutic Care with Older People (Paul Terry, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Hertfordshire)
Abstract:  Therapeutic care with older people means facing terrors of dependency, loneliness and death. This seminar will explore these terrors and how they may contribute to ageist attitudes and behaviours with older people. A principal way of trying to manage such terrors is by means of an unconscious projective defence mechanism, ‘projective identification’, in which the terrors are denied and attributed to another, often in a way that evokes these feelings in the other person who may mistakenly identify the feelings as their own and only their own. The seminar will examine how these terrors may be projected back and forth between an older person and their therapist or carer, and how such projections may underlie ageist attitudes and behaviours which can have debilitating consequences for those who are old. Alternatively, illustrations will be given of how an understanding of the communicative aspects of these projective processes and opportunity to reflect upon feelings stirred by care with older people, can ameliorate the effects of ageism and result in beneficial outcomes for older people.
Paul Terry is a Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Specialty Lead for Older People in a Specialist Mental Health Team for Older People in Hertfordshire Partnership NHS Foundation Trust. He was Lecturer in Counselling at Birkbeck College, University of London and was involved in establishing the MSc in Psychodynamic Counselling and most recently the new Foundation degree in Psychodynamic Counselling and Cognitive Behaviour Therapy. He has worked in child, adolescent, and adult mental health, and forensic settings. In 2004 he won the Annual Essay Prize of the Association of Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy in the NHS for his article ‘Dangerous Liaisons: Psychosis and Violence – Working in a Psychiatric Intensive Care Unit’. In 2008 he published a revised 2nd edition of his book Counselling and Psychotherapy with Older People: A Psychodynamic Approach (London: Palgrave Macmillan). He is also Consultant Editor for the journal Psychodynamic Practice. He organises an annual conference for the journal in association with the Institute of Group Analysis examining social and political themes from a psychoanalytic perspective.
The Open Seminars all take place in room Lecture Room 2  from 5.30-7.00pm.  All Welcome T 01206 873640  E cpsadmin@essex.ac.uk   www.essex.ac.uk/cps
Many thanks.
Please do not hesitate to contact me if you require any further information.
With best wishes, Debbie
Debbie Stewart
Centre Administrator
Centre for Psychoanalytic Studies
University of Essex
Essex CO4 3SQ
Telephone:  01206 873640
Facsimile: 01206 872746
Clinical Workshops in collaboration with The Institute of Psychoanalysis