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Winner of the Bernard Ratigan Award for Psychoanalysis and Diveristy - Respond

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

The British Psychoanalytic Council's recent PPNOW (Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy NOW) Bernard Ratigan Award received by Respond's Richard Curen and Noelle Blackman

Respond is an organisation that specialises in treating children and adults with learning disabilities or autism who have been abuse and/or have abused others. Where perhaps traditional therapies have shied away from this area, Respond embraces this specific population, often putting into words the unsayable and untranslatable, using a variety of psychoanalytic and systemic methods. Their pioneering work builds on the thinking and practice developed by Valerie Sinason, Anne Alvarez, Neville Symington, Tamsin Cottis and the late Alan Corbett. Alan’s work, in particular on disability transference, incorporates working with both victim and perpetrators in a way that is both boundaried and unique.


Respond is in constant demand due to the very niche and focused work they carry out in this often neglected and under-researched field. The value of being able to think in an area that is often neglected with people who are themselves marginalised and neglected is seen in the benefits to individual patients and their families and carers. Respond’s application of psychoanalytic theory and practice continues to help practitioners, patients, their carers and the professionals supporting them to see beyond ‘behaviours’ and link them to unconscious motivations and phenomena that need careful attention and exploration. Psychoanalytic work with people with learning disabilities or autism is still in its infancy, and Respond’s work provides an essential and important contribution to the field and it is time Respond is recognised and celebrated.


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