Contemporary Family Therapy

, Volume 26, Issue 1, pp 3–21 | Cite as

Relational Couple Therapy with Post-Traumatic Survivors: Links Between Post-Traumatic Self and Contemporary Intimate Relationships

Abstract

The present article describes a clinical case study of relational couple therapy with post-traumatic spouses. Survivors, who were infants and toddlers during the Holocaust, disclose tremendous difficulties in their intimate relationships. The early loss of parental figures, and cumulative traumatic experiences throughout survivors' lives in the post war era hampered their capacity for intimate partnership despite its ultimate necessity. Relational couple therapy creates an unfamiliar experiential space with the couple's bond. This experiential space enables each partner to change destructive emotional patterns within one's inner psychic reality as well as the couple's emotional system. In addition, the therapeutic triangle creates partial transformational boundaries between past traumas and the couple traumatic bonds.

child-survivors relational couple therapy post-traumatic partnership pathological intimacy Holocaust 

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Copyright information

© Human Sciences Press, Inc. 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Bob Shapell School of Social WorkTel-Aviv University, Ramat-AvivTel-AvivIsrael

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