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Seminars, conferences and online resources on psychotherapy and human relationships
Psychodynamic Perspectives on Working with Bulimia

A 1 day seminar led by Em Farrell & Marilyn Lawrence

Saturday 4 July 2015

Following the sell-out and highly acclaimed eating disorders workshop led by Em Farrell and Marilyn Lawrence in 2014, our speakers have agreed to return to focus specifically on better understanding on working with bulimia. The programme will offer participants a theoretical overview, exploring the psychodynamics of this particular eating problem. The day will include both formal presentations and workshops on applying such theory to clinical technique. The underlying theoretical assumption of the programme is that mental functioning is unconscious as well as conscious and that it is therefore helpful to think about eating disorders as a representation of disturbances in early and significant relationships. We will xplore how this approach opens a pathway for understanding the control of food as an object-relational pattern and dynamics in the therapeutic relationship itself.

We will consider some of the main factors that hinder or prevent the integration of somatic, emotional and mental processes in psychotherapy. In this context there will be an emphasis on the dilemmas we face when working with complex trauma and encounter dissociative mechanisms and processes.


Em Farrell
Em Farrell has worked with eating disordered patients since she set up the Elizabeth Gentle Centre in 1989. At that time she used CBT and massage therapy to help bulimics and anorexics. She then broadened her practice but retained her interest in eating disorders. She wrote Lost for Words: The Psychoanalysis of Anorexia and Bulimia in 1995, was the on-line agony columnist for eating problems and body image issues for Psychologies Magazine and ran a short course on how to work with Eating Disorders for Psychotherapists for a number of years at the Westminster Pastoral Foundation. She is currently setting up a bespoke specialist non-residential anorexic service. She recently completed a training in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy.

Marilyn Lawrence
Marilyn Lawrence is a psychoanalyst who has worked for many years with patients with eating disorders, both in her private practice and in her work with young adults at the Tavistock Clinic. Her published works include: Loving them to death: the anorexic and her objects (in the International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 2001, 82:43-55); Body, Mother, Mind (in the International Journal of Psychoanalysis, 2002, A 83: 837-850); The Anorexic Mind (2008, Karnac Books, London).


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Payments are made on a secure partner website.
Please read our booking conditions before making your booking

William T. Ayton -

Self-funded: £130
Organisationally-funded: £200
CPD Hours

Certificates of attendance for 6.5 hours will be provided at the event

8 All Saints Street
N1 9RL

09.30 Registration and drinks
10.00 Start
11:00 Coffee
13:00 Lunch
15:00 Tea
17.00 End