The creative group experience
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The creative group experience book
This chapter explores the unspoken communications between therapists and the young people in an inpatient group that on a hospital psychiatric ward specialising in work with children. One of the tasks of such a unit is to help each child build up a capacity to think more about her emotional life and thereby remove some of the impediments to development. The chapter explains a creative group on the ward to help the children begin to represent their state of mind through artwork, and then to think and talk about their feelings. It describes how we have drawn on the Tavistock Model of Infant Observation to understand what the children are communicating, through body movement and facial expressions, and by exploring people experience of the transference and counter transference. The psychiatric unit takes children with very entrenched eating disorders and somatic disorders, including a pervasive retreat from life.