About Center for Object Relations

Center for Object Relations is a thriving community of lifelong learners from the Northwest and throughout the World, offering courses and continued education on clinical, experiential application of British Object Relations theory.

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At the Foundation of All that Makes us Human

is Relationship

We view life through the lens of relationship, in how we all began in relationship to a mother, in the womb. From birth onward there is development through relationship, and in the absence of relationship, and this begins the formation of our inner world. We come to see that as we grow, there is complexity in how we develop through relationship, and it is in this complex experience of presence/absence, pain/relief, taking-in/getting-out that many of the emotional, physical, and mental qualities and problems develop over time.

Often, many of the modern therapeutic modalities do not address the complexities in the development of the internal world of our patients. And so while there at times may be short-term progress, many of these patients return again and again to treatment, or at worse give up, losing hope of ever finding help.

The purpose of Center for Object Relations is to help therapists, and anyone else who is interested, to begin to get to know the intricacies of human development through the frame of British Object Relations. British Object Relations is a lens that is in the formational core of many current therapeutic modalities, and offers a “compass as a way to navigate” (language from Franco Scabbiolo) the internal world of ourselves and our patients.

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Developmental Learning is Experiential

A fundamental aspect of our approach to learning the emotional complexity of “listening to one’s self, listening to another” is experiential. This type of work is an art that is practiced through the tangible reality of here-and-now experience. At COR, much of our focus is on incorporating didactic training with lived experience. Infant Observation provides a real time witnessing the psychic and emotional development of a baby through a year-long practice of weekly visits with a mother-infant dyad. Our ongoing series Saturday Dialogues is a regular practice of a clinician presenting case material to a discussant and to the attendees, to provide an in-depth look into a patient-therapist dyad. All of our beginning and advanced courses heavily incorporate space for looking at both the case material of the students and instructors. And within all of this, we believe it is vital to the therapeutic work for the clinician to get to know their own unconscious process.

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