The SCIENCE of the ART of Psychotherapy

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Where do I begin? I came across Dr. Allan N. Schore in the consulting room (figuratively) & quite rapidly found myself diving into his literary work. Carrying the alias of "the American Bowlby" my antennas were alert towards feeling out if there was merit to the designation. He did not disappoint, in fact I will even go as far as stating that this was a challenging read because of the redundancy yet it was during my "second lap" of reading his work that I was able to appreciate his precision towards language accurately depicting the content. 

Interpersonal neurobiology was dropped into my lap at a time when I had no recognized need and definitely no appreciation for it, while working as a clinical coordinator for the homeless outreach team in the Bronx. I absolutely loved the direct service work I was doing.... and it was while increasing my motivation towards understanding why the adults I worked with refused housing in the dead of winter that I was introduced to the work of Dr. Dan Siegel. Stay with me. The article touched on ways in which our brain processes subjective information, in particular within itself and with others. I paid very little attention to what I was reading, and recall being bored! I had my mind set on uncovering this phantasized secret anecdote that would enhance my skill sets towards getting the chronically street homeless adults to do what I wanted them to do! I was VERY GREEN at the time and had no comprehension of what burn out meant, for my clients or for myself.

Fast forward to 2017, I had a year filled with robust gratifying experiences. It was also when I purchased The Science of the Art of Psychotherapy, which further expanded my understanding of the ways in which parts and systems collude towards communicating within the human body; in conjunction to what I had learned within my herbal apprenticeship a year prior. Picture if you will the delight on my face as page after page validated and matched what I had spiritually been exposed to.... what a fulfilling dessert! I felt validated as a psychodynamically oriented clinician within each page that I turned in this book, as the explicit process of ways in which we communicate, attach and attune to another takes place; in a very Anglo Saxon scientific way. I say that as an acculturated Haitian American woman; Dr. Schore's utilization of neurobiology to give language to the intuitive, empathic, subjective right hemisphere that guides our unconscious processes was affirming based on my American education. He found a way to connect the dots in a linear manner. Within my culture and nuclear family we were taught very early in life that the brain is essentially numerous systems operating as one and in an even more exact manner, there's what we have access to (logic, critical thinking, ego) and what we have to will ourselves to bring into conscious awareness (memories, instincts, drives, the "unknown"). And within that, the integration of herbs/plants, crystals/gems & rituals in alignment with astronomy all play a part in accessing the "divine" right hemisphere while preoccupying the needs of the left hemisphere. Those teachings were en grained at an early age to be explored, accepted or rejected. Argumentum ad populum

The timing of this post comes 2 months after completing the book pertaining to the parallels within my life. As I expand my network, which invariably consists of other clinicians, I find myself impatient towards staying in conversation with those who are out of awareness as it pertains to their impact on the dyadic relationship in the consulting room. I am human, and what a journey it has been collecting the experiences, knowledge and language that encapsulates that which is the therapeutic relationship.      Dr. Allan N. Schore has done some truly groundbreaking work, and his psychoanalytical disposition is going to provide immense traction towards the masses having access to this information; oh the power of information! I highly recommend this as a reading to anyone who has the time and patience towards the scientific aspects of brain to brain communication and its impact on the therapeutic relationship.


"To dare to be aware of the facts of the universe in which we are existing calls for courage."

-Wilfred Bion

Shari Appollon

Fwd Lax, LLC, 26 Court Street, Brooklyn, NY, 11242