Authentic Empathy & Therapeutic Alliances (Part 2)

In a previous Synapsis post, I introduced the notion of the Therapeutic Alliance (TA) – an active ingredient of psychopathology and psychotherapy. I discussed the antecedence of therapeutic relationships formed between victim service providers (VSPs) and male victims of sexual assault (e.g. rape, molestation, sodomy, etc.). My interest? Their therapeutic and extra-therapeutic rehabilitation and healing, and how this process (a continuum of healing, more or less) is impacted by social stigma. Male victims infrequently seek care, making further scholarship in this domain problematical, but welcoming.

The Smile: A Confusing Expression for Every Occasion

James Belarde // “Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.” -Thích Nhất Hạnh One of the biggest smiles I’ve ever flashed came after purposefully having my jaw broken, subsequently facing a six-week period where I couldn’t chew. While this sounds masochistic at…

Open Heart

By Bennett Kuhn // Open Heart (2019) is an original essay-album composed at Mt. Sinai Hospital in New York City and on Long Island during May 2019. It is available to stream below via Soundcloud pending its digital release on Astro Nautico in July. Bennett Kuhn – Open Heart (2019) 01 Awash In (0:37)02 A…

Authentic Empathy & Therapeutic Alliances (Part 1)

Chuka Nestor Emezue // “Laying the pus-covered pad on the desk in front of him, he gave up his secret. During his escape from the civil war in neighbouring Congo, he had been separated from his wife and taken by rebels. His captors raped him, three times a day, every day for three years. And…

The Empathy Chamber

Bennett Kuhn // Around us were dusty stacks of forgotten hardcover books and crowd members circulating in the now-defunct Beaumont Warehouse venue in West Philly. The three-night immersive multimedia art project called Going There was in full swing, and a short queue led up to the table where I sat with two synthesizers welcoming strangers…

Pen to Paper

Gabi Schaffzin // Elsewhere, I’ve written about Henry Dreyfuss’s The Measure of Man and the Humanscale Manual, which came along soon after. Briefly, The Measure of Man is a guide for industrial designers, complete with scores of anthropometric data points. It features hundreds, if not thousands, of meticulously calculated measurements of various human bodies. To the industrial designer, engineer,…

“Let’s Play!”: The Use of Play Therapy in Child Healthcare

James Belarde// “To truly laugh, you must be able to take your pain, and play with it.” -Charlie Chaplin Children are the definition of potential. While having dinner on a first date at a vegetarian restaurant, the conversation turned to my gross undereducation in the field of vegetables and an abhorrent overeducation in the field…

Cuento Therapy, Storytelling, and Men Who Abuse Women

Chuka Nestor Emezue // In 1985, Dr. Giuseppe Costantino and his colleagues, Drs. Robert G. Malgady, and Lloyd Henry Rogler, drafted their foremost paperback: “Cuento Therapy: folktales as a culturally sensitive psychotherapy for Puerto Rican children.” Their work provided instruction in Cuento Therapy, as well as its hopeful application to the field of child psychotherapy…