chapter  5
14 Pages

Ambivalence, Boundaries, Edges and Expansion

Relatedness and collaboration in a dance movement psychotherapy and music therapy group for adults with learning disabilities
ByCéline Butté, Diana Whelan

In this chapter, the authors describe a multi-faceted piece of collaborative clinical work and research. They highlight themes that emerged from the research pertaining to experiences of collaboration, and the function of the co-working team in creating facilitative structures and a mindful culture around the work. At the heart of the collaboration was an eight-month music and dance movement psychotherapy group offered to ten clients with learning disabilities within a day centre. Collaboration was evident of work with staff that support clients in the different parts of the day centre, and extended into their roles beyond the group as colleagues within a wider multi-disciplinary team. The therapy group was established specifically for people who showed ambivalence towards making and sustaining relationships. Music and props, too, bridged the gap, connecting across space as sounds were acknowledged and supported, and objects offered a visual and sometimes tangible link between individuals on the edges of the room and those in the inner circle.