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ENGLISH INFO

The Clinic

The Specialist Family Clinic of Bemowo District in the capital city of Warsaw was established in 1997 in order to provide the inhabitants of the district with professional psychological assistance in difficult family situations, such as family crises, marital conflicts, child-raising difficulties, problems related to entering the next stage of life, experiences of relationship breakdown or other types of losses. In fact, the Clinic started its activity in March 1998 and it is still developing both in terms of staff and content.

We have high hopes in relation to psychoeducation in the view of is preventive function. Therefore, since the very beginning of the Clinic’s existence, the „School for Parents and Tutors” Program has been consistently implemented. It consists of workshops on various subjects, which help to build close parent-child relationships. They help to establish and maintain relationships by teaching communication aimed at understanding and meeting people to experience being loved, needed and important.

In our psychotherapeutic work we integrate systemic and psychoanalytical thinking, which enables us to have a broader view of relations. Initially, we used mainly systemic thinking and the systemic family therapy approach. Looking for a deeper understanding of our patients’ emotional difficulties and our therapeutic relationships, we have enriched our work with psychoanalytical thinking. This resulted in a better understanding of the unconscious processes in relations. Currently, the Clinic offers long-term psychotherapy for couples and families, each of which is preceded by a four-meeting consultation process conducted by a single therapist or a pair of therapists.

International co-operation

Since 2013, the Clinic has been working with Stanley Ruszczynski and Mary Morgan, psychoanalysts and psychoanalytical therapists specialising in couples therapy, associated with the Tavistock Clinic in London. During the meetings held four times a year, Ruszczynski and Morgan conduct clinical work supervision and training seminars for the Clinc team. This is an opportunity to discuss the latest literature on psychoanalytical therapy of couples and to deepen the understanding of the phenomena occurring during the work with patients.

The Conference „Working Psychoanalytically with Couples”

The result of the co-operation with Tavistock-based psychotherapists is a series of conferences entitled „Working Psychoanalytically with Couples”, initiated in 2016. The conferences are held annually in spring and are attended by foreign guests, mainly those associated with the Tavistock Relationships clinic in London, who present their skills and tools as well as theoretical understanding of the couples psychotherapy process. Speakers from Poland also share descriptions of their clinical work and present interesting theoretical materials which are rooted also in the current of other than British psychoanalysis.

Workshops for couples

The first cycle of “Parents as Partners” workshops, which had been successfully implemented in the UK, was launched in 2018 in the Clinic as part of the cooperation with Tavistock Relationships. There are 16 group sessions, addressed at couples who are parents. Their aim is to strengthen the relationship between the couple and to improve parental co-operation. The program was created by Phil and Carolyn Cowan, American professors, based on their experience in research on parental couples. They observed, among other things, that the better the relationship between parents as partners is, the greater the involvement of a father in relations with children (also in case of couples after divorce or separation). Research in the United Kingdom and the United States has shown that this programme is highly effective. Among other things, it determined the following:

  • the reduction of mental tension and stress of the parents,

  •  fewer emotional difficulties and behavioural disorders of their children,

  • the improvement of partner and parent relationships of programme participants,

  • the reduction of the number of conflicts between the couple,

  • the reduction of the number of violent ways of resolving conflicts.

The workshops strengthen and deepen the relationship between the partners raising children together – the group has an educational and therapeutic character.

The research projects

The research project conducted in the Clinic aims to evaluate various forms of psychological assistance offered by us. We want to be able to assess its effectiveness and develop it on the basis of these results. In the longer term, we want to look at various aspects of therapeutic work and their impact on the effectiveness and life quality of the patients. At the moment, we are using quantitative methods, based on the model of evaluation studies of the Tavistock Relationships Clinic and Training Centre in London, with which we keep in touch.

One of the elements of our research project is our use (as one of the first centres in Poland) of the world-known questionnaire Clinical Outcomes Routine Evaluation – Outcome Measure” (CORE-OM) by professor Chris Evans and his team (e.g. Evans et al., 2000; Evans et al., 2002). It is a tool that is currently being adapted to Polish conditions. First indications are that the results achieved so far are broadly in line with those achieved in the UK. We want the data we collect to contribute to the development of Polish standards for the tool.

References

Evans, C., Connell, J., Barkham, M., Margison, F., McGRATH, G. R. A. E. M. E., Mellor-Clark, J., & Audin, K. (2002). Towards a standardised brief outcome measure: Psychometric properties and utility of the CORE–OM. The British Journal of Psychiatry, 180(1), 51-60.

Evans, John Mellor-Clark, Frank Margison, Michael Barkham, Kerry Audin, Janice Connell, Graeme McGrath, C. (2000). CORE: clinical outcomes in routine evaluation. Journal of Mental Health, 9(3), 247-255.

For English-speaking patients

Consultations for couples are preliminary sessions for couples experiencing difficulties in their relationship, during which the therapist searches together with the couple for a better understanding of the problem they are concerned about and help in choosing the appropriate form of further help (e.g. couples therapy, individual therapy, psychiatric consultation, psychoeducational workshops, etc.). The consultation may be a prelude to the couples therapy in the Clinic.

The couples consultation cycle normally comprises four sessions. A single consultation session lasts 60 minutes. Sessions are held once a week (if possible), always with the participation of both partners and the same therapist or the pair of therapists.

Enrolment for consultations shall take place by telephone or in person during the working hours of the secretary’s office. When enrolling, the couple is offered the opportunity to book four consecutive sessions.

Family consultations are preliminary sessions, to which we would like to invite you when the difficulties concern the whole family, the parents and the children. These sessions serve to identify and understand the nature of the problem reported by the family and to select the appropriate form of further assistance (e.g. family therapy, couples therapy, psychiatric consultation, psychoeducational workshops).  The consultation may be a prelude to family therapy in the Clinic.

The family consultation cycle usually comprises four sessions. A single consultation session lasts 60 minutes. Sessions are held once a week (if possible) with the participation of all family members and the same therapist or a pair of therapists.

Enrolment for consultations shall take place by telephone or in person during the working hours of the secretary’s office. When enrolling, the couple is offered the opportunity to book four consecutive sessions.

Individual consultation is a single session for people who are looking for help due to difficulties that affect them. This session serves primarily to define the nature of the reported problem and to select the appropriate form of further assistance (individual therapy, psychiatric consultation, couples or family consultation, treatment of addictions, etc.). There is no possibility of individual therapy in the Clinic.

The consultation takes 50 minutes. Enrolment for consultations shall take place by telephone or in person during the working hours of the secretary’s office.

Psychoanalytical Psychotherapy for Couples is a form of assistance for those couples who have found themselves in a crisis situation, but also for those who are experiencing a recurring, long-lasting conflicts and problems and they feel that they have already used up all manners to deal with them on their own. Its purpose is to enable the partners to listen to and better understand one another. Psychoanalytical thinking underlying this form of therapy assumes that unconscious patterns of functioning and feelings affect our current life and the way we construct relationships with others. By reflecting on often unconscious emotions and typical ways of functioning, the therapy allows for a deeper understanding of ourselves and others.

Admission to couples therapy in the Clinic is always preceded by a series of consultations. If, after the consultation process, the therapist and the couple see the need for therapy, the couple will be placed on the waiting list. The waiting time for the therapy ranges from a few months to one and a half year. If the couple is not offered therapy within 5 months from the last consultation, we invite them to a follow-up consultation, the aim of which is to learn about the current situation of the couple and further motivation to undergo therapy. Whenever there is a free therapy spot, the secretary’s office shall contact the first couple on the waiting list and invite them to start the therapeutic process. If for some reason this date is not accepted, the couple may wait for the next (and the last) date to be proposed. Resignation from the second proposal means the resignation from the therapy in our Clinic.

The couples therapy takes approximately two years, with the possibility of shortening or prolonging this period. Therapeutic sessions last 60 minutes and take place once a week, on regular days and times, always with the participation of both partners and the therapist or the therapeutic team.

Enrolment for consultations prior to couples therapy shall take place by telephone or in person during the working hours of the secretary’s office.

Psychoanalytical family psychotherapy is a form of therapy designed for families who have found themselves in crisis or are experiencing other kinds of long-term difficulties affecting all family members. Its aim is to better understand the problems faced by the family as a whole and to get to know the motives, needs, fantasies and feelings of those who form it, which are not always conscious. This helps to better understand oneself and other family members and the role which individuals play in the process leading to the formation and persistence of difficulties. An important element of the therapy is to enable all participants to show their perspective.

Admission to family therapy in the Counselling Centre is always preceded by a series of consultations. If, after the consultation process, the therapist and the family see the need for therapy, the family will be placed on a waiting list. The waiting time for the therapy ranges from a few months to one and a half year. If the family is not offered therapy within 5 months from the end of the consultation, we invite them to a follow-up consultation, the aim of which is to learn about the current situation of the family and further motivation to undergo therapy. Whenever there is a free therapy spot, the secretary’s office shall contact the first family on the waiting list and invite them to start the therapeutic process. If for some reason this date is not accepted, the family may wait for the next (and the last) date to be proposed. Resignation from the second proposal means the resignation from the therapy in our Clinic.

Family therapy takes approximately two years, with the possibility of shortening or prolonging this period. Therapeutic sessions last 60 minutes and are held once a week, on a regular days and times, with the participation of all members of the family and the therapist or the therapeutic team.

Enrolment for consultations prior to family therapy shall take place by telephone or in person during the working hours of the secretary’s office.

Family mediation is a decision making method which is useful when an agreement between the conflicted parties is not possible without the support of a third party. The main objective of mediation is to develop a common, lasting agreement concerning most often child care, the financing of their needs, the division of property and support for parental cooperation. The mediator actively aids in constructive communication, supports the expression of emotions and helps to identify the needs of all participants in the process. She is also responsible for maintaining the structure. The Parties reach an agreement taking into account one other’s needs on the basis on a willingness to reach agreement, fairness and respect for differences. An important element of the mediation process is the parental reflection on the child’s perspective in a situation of conflict between the parents.

Mediation differs from therapy in that it aims to reach a specific agreement, while the therapy mainly aims to improve the quality of the relations between the couple or within the family and to enhance self-awareness. The mediation is also a short-term process (between two and six sessions), while the therapy usually takes much longer (two years in the Clinic).

A single mediation session takes 75 minutes. Sessions are held once a week (if possible) and be attended by both parties.

Psychotherapists working in English:

Tomasz Jurczyk,a psychotherapist – holds a Master’s Degree from the Faculty of Psychology of the University of Warsaw, with a major in Clinical Psychology of Children and Families. He completed a one-year introductory course in psychoanalytical psychotherapy and he is currently a student of a five-year postgraduate programme in psychodynamic-systemic approach Conducted by “On the Route” Foundation for the Development of Family Therapy. He is a member of the Polish Psychiatric Society.
In the Clinic he offers consultations and couples therapy as well as family therapy.

Iwa Magryta-Wojda,a psychotherapist – holds a Master’s Degree from the Faculty of Psychology of the University of Warsaw, with major in the Therapy of Families and Married Couples. She also completed a four-year post-graduate course in the area of systemic psychotherapeutic approach conducted by the Centre for Systemic Psychotherapy in Cracow. She holds a psychotherapist certificate issued by the Polish Psychological Association, of which she is a member.
In the Clinic she offers consultations and couples therapy as well as family therapy.

Agnieszka Olszewska,a mediator- holds a Master’s Degree from the Institute of Social Prevention and Rehabilitation of the University of Warsaw. She also completed two-year post-graduate studies at the Group Therapy and Training Institute of the Application of Group Psychological Training Department, conducted at the University of Warsaw, as well as training in mediation with specialisation in family mediation. She is currently a student of a four-year training programme in group and individual psychotherapy at the Rasztów Group Analysis Institute.
In the clinic she conducts mediation and psychoeducational workshops.

Specjalistyczna Poradnia Rodzinna Dzielnicy Bemowo m.st. Warszawy
ul. Gen. T. Pełczyńskiego 28 E, 01-471 Warszawa
tel. 22 664 13 42, 22 664 08 49, fax: 22 664 13 42
e-mail:info@spr.bemowo.waw.pl