Dreaming the unthinkable, narrating the non-memory. Precursors of the fairytale as “mediating object” and as “shared dream” in the psychotherapeutic treatment of psychoses


In this paper the author confronts the problem of how to make communication possible in the psychotherapy of child psychoses, in cases where the symbolic capacity is seriously compromised or never structured, and the self is extremely vulnerable, without a sense of temporality, and imprisoned in a “circular time” that seems incapable of  articulations and resolutions. Through a brief clinical presentation, the idea is suggested of a “mediating object” – synthesis of the patient’s scanty and chaotic contribution and of the analyst’s reverie – on which to base a “transitional communication” that does not prematurely impose a separateness (implicit also in the interpretation) that the young psychotic patient cannot yet tolerate. A clinical vignette is then presented Read more


Discovering the Inner World through Fairy-Tales


We present the clinical work, carried out by a team of therapists with autistic and psychotic children, within a Fairy-Tale Workshop. By becoming a container for projections, the fairy-tale, the mediating object of the group, helps provide a sense, a form to sensations-emotions that have not yet become thoughts, but which can later be named. It enabled and supported the emergence of symbolic thinking within the therapeutic group. A parallel group work allowed parents to get in touch with the children’s inner world, and to consider them no longer as a part of themselves, but as having their own life and potential resources to be Read more