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335 North Seymour Avenue,
Lansing, Michigan 48933-1114
(517) 482-2800

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Michigan Psychotherapy is a multidisciplinary Mental Health organization providing Psychotherapy for Individuals, Couples and Families using Relational, Psychoanalytic, Cognitive and Medication modalities, as appropriate.


Michigan Psychotherapy is a multidisciplinary Mental Health organization providing Psychotherapy for Individuals, Couples and Families using Relational, Psychoanalytic, Cognitive and Medication modalities, as appropriate. Freudian psychotherapy is dynamic psychotherapy. Relational psychotherapy was developed from the work at the Stone Center of Wellesley College (Wellesley, MA). Relational psychotherapy focuses on the importance of relationships in the development of personality and mental health (good or bad). The psychotherapy of relationships has seldom beeen seen as important in the development of personality. Classical dynamic psychology says that the relationship is established by the personalities of the people involved. Relational psychology says that the personality is developed in response to the relationships the person has. Relational psychology starts with a belief in the unconscious (per Freud) and then moves on to look at the effect on the personality (conscious and unconscious) of the developmental relationships. Abraham Maslow developed the theory of Hierarchy of Needs . The Hierarchy of Needs was incorporated into Relational psychology as all small children depend on relationships with caregivers to have their needs met. Psychiatrists may have very little training in doing psychotherapy. Be sure to ask. Most psychiatrists spend their time writing prescriptions, not in doing psychotherapy.

Therapeutic Approach Let us begin with an infant. That little person has very great needs, is very dependent on others, and has limited ways of making her/his needs known and getting them satisfied. If the parents/caretakers do a “good enough” (as in, it does NOT have to be perfect, but has to be pretty good) job in attuning to the child and meeting those needs, then things get off to a good start.

In our practice, we have found the idea of object constancy inadequate to explain what was going (or not going) on with some of our patients. Conceptually, a patient could leave a session, and if someone had met them in the parking lot and asked them if they had a therapist, almost all of the time, they would have known the correct answer. However, if they found themselves in some sort of a crisis, they would never remember that they could call their therapist, even if the therapist had given them business cards to post on their refrigerator, put in their wallet, etc. Furthermore, they seemed to have no sense from session to session, that the therapy relationship could be helpful in any way. In other, words, most of the time they had literal object constancy, i.e., they could maintain a mental representation of the object (the therapist), but nothing else.

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