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(p. 434) Working with States of Mindlessness in Substance-Abusing Mothers with Personality Disturbance 

(p. 434) Working with States of Mindlessness in Substance-Abusing Mothers with Personality Disturbance
Chapter:
(p. 434) Working with States of Mindlessness in Substance-Abusing Mothers with Personality Disturbance
Author(s):

Tessa Baradon

and Minna Daum

DOI:
10.1093/med:psych/9780199743100.003.0021
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date: 16 October 2018

This chapter describes clinical work that addresses states of mindlessness in substance-abusing mothers with personality disorder. The clinical work is based on a developmental approach to the acquisition of capacity to “own” and understand states of mind and to see them as meaningful to ongoing behavior and actions. More specifically, it takes into account the child's experience of safely looking into another person's mind. The chapter first provides an overview of the clinical approach, with emphasis on the concept of mentalization as a framework for focusing the therapist's gaze on the mind-to-mind interactions in the room. It then considers the clinical applications by presenting two vignettes, one of a mother and her baby and the other of a mother and her child aged six. The two cases offer insights into the developmental trajectory in response to derailed primary relationships as the child grows older.

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