We were treated to a wonderful paper by Pete Palumbo at our second Alumni event – based in part on a book he’d come across called Flying without Wings by Dr Arnold Beiser, and partly on his own Gestalt practice and theoretical base. It would be difficult to summarise here, but some themes were:
- being born in captivity (heteronormativity) and the effect on one’s sense of support in the world
- how needs become shame in the face of non-attunement by a care-giver (or therapist)
- how autonomy arises in relation to others, not just from inside oneself – “dependent on smoothly functioning interdependency”
etcetera….. too much to condense, but wonderful prompts to the mind, and we are hoping Pete will publish his paper. He finished with the question, “Do we attend enough to the suffering situation, or only to the suffering individual?”
After discussion, there was much sharing of our personal and professional issues in the GSD field. It is a measure of the trust within Pink Therapy, I think, that we were ready to disclose thoughts, feelings and some non-PC beliefs in the group, without worrying about judgment.
Damian McCann has offered to present something at the next Alumni event in March. We’re adopting a pattern for the afternoon of starting at 2 pm with drinks and biscuits, having a lengthy introductory round followed by the ‘presentation’ and discussion; then a break, and finally a free-floating group discussion, until 5.30 pm. It seems to be working fine.
At just £10 for 3.5 hours, it’s a great way to keep in touch with Pink Therapy people and ideas. Next Alumni event, Saturday 15 March 2014. Open to all who’ve done the longer PT trainings. Do come.