Authors: Megan Shiell, NSW
Event: 2006 TheMHS Conference
Subject: SPECIFIC MENTAL DISORDERS / MENTAL ILLNESSES, Community Wellbeing and Services
Type of resource: Conference Presentations and Papers
Abstract: This paper sets out to review how Art Psychotherapy can be used in conjunction with Dialectical Behaviour Therapy (DBT) in the treatment of clients suffering from Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). Art Psychotherapy offers a space for the creation of a revealing image, a space for reflection, a space where a client can stay a little longer with intensive emotions in a safe contained environment of the therapeutic relationship. The paper proposes that Art Psychotherapy can offer another dimension to the skills based program Dialectical Behaviour Therapy in that the making of objects and images can substantially support the understanding of the strategies and techniques offered in DBT in supporting clients. It can offer clients with BPD a unique opportunity to reconnect to themselves, to find their observer self and repair the deficit that is often felt in their lives, namely, the chronic feelings of emptiness.