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10.30 AM - 12.00 PM

Empathic confrontation in the supervisor-supervisee relationship

by Michiel van Vreeswijk, Michiel Boog & Klaartje van Hest


A lot of attention is paid to limited reparenting in schema therapy to our patients, but how about limited reparenting between a supervisor and supervisee? How do our schemas and modes influence the way we work together and give feedback to our supervisees? How and when do we give a no-go to the supervisee or advise personal therapy? What do we tell our supervisees about our own learning process and schema activation?

Supervision does not always have a positive outcome. In some cases, supervisees are even traumatized by their supervisor, feeling inadequate, controlled or deskilled. Supervisors may also feel excessive responsibility for their supervisee and/or feel unsure of how to name or handle the depth and scope of the work. In this interactive workshop we focus on schemas and modes of the supervisor, interactions between schemas and modes of supervisor-supervisee and how to approach limited reparenting in supervision. The important role of empathic confrontation in supervision will be discussed and practiced in the workshop.

Learning Objectives:

* Becoming more aware of the role of limited reparenting and specifically becoming more aware of empathic confrontation in the supervisor-supervisee relationship
* Becoming aware of how schemas and modes influence the way we work together and give feedback to our supervisees

* Feeling more able to give difficult feedback to the supervisee in a Healthy Adult way

Teaching Methods:

70% of the workshop will be focused on experienced based learning by the participants of the workshop via imagery exercises, role play and chair technique. 30% of the workshop will be used for Powerpoint and giving examples as role model.

Target Audience:

Mental health care professionals giving ST. 

Level of experience required for participants (do you offer options, such as beginner, intermediate, or advanced?):

Participants should have at least the level of advanced in ST to be able to participate.

Implications for everyday clinical practice in Schema Therapy:

Supervisors who are more aware of how their schemas and modes relate to giving feedback and empathic confrontation will be more easily able to make well profound choices. They will be more aware of how schemas and modes influence the way we work together and give feedback to supervisees.

Relevant Background Readings about the Topic:

Van Vreeswijk, M. F. (in press). Authenticity and Personal Openness in the Therapy Relationship. Creative Methods in Schema Therapy: Advances and Innovation in Clinical Practice (eds. G. Heath & H. Startup). Routledge Taylor & Francis Group.

About the Presenters:

Michiel van Vreeswijk

Michiel van Vreeswijk, MSc is clinical psychologist and CEO of G-Kracht Mental Health Care Institute, The Netherlands. He is a certified supervisor and personal therapist in cognitive behavioral therapy (VGCt), certified supervisor schema therapy individual and group schema therapy (ISST, Dutch society of ST) and specialist group therapy (Dutch society of group psychotherapie: NVGP). Michiel van Vreeswijk gives regularly schema therapy workshops/ supervision/ personal therapy in the Netherlands and worldwide. He is (co-) author/ editor of several schema books/ chapters/ articles. 

Michael Boog

Michiel Boog, PhD is clinical psychologist and is a certified advanced level schema therapist (Dutch society of ST) who works at Antes in the Netherlands. He is an expert in the treatment of patients with a substance use disorder. Michiel Boog has worked closely together with Hannie van Genderen and Arnoud Arntz on the development of a schema therapy program for patients with a substance use disorder.

Klaartje van Hest

Klaartje van Hest is clinical psychologist. She is a certified advanced level schema therapist (Dutch society of ST) an advanced level group therapist (Dutch society NVGP) and a cognitive behavioral therapist (VGCt). She works at both Antes and G-kracht Mental Health Care Institute, The Netherlands. Her core business is working with patients with addition and personality disorders in an intensive outpatient treatment.

Why Schema Therapy?

Schema therapy has been extensively researched to effectively treat a wide variety of typically treatment resistant conditions, including Borderline Personality Disorder and Narcissistic Personality Disorder. Read our summary of the latest research comparing the dramatic results of schema therapy compared to other standard models of psychotherapy.

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