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Seminars, conferences and online resources on psychotherapy and human relationships
Filling the Void
Psychotherapeutic skills for working with obesity

With Speakers: Professor Julia Buckroyd and Em Farrell

Saturday 22 July 2017 - London

At this theory and skills workshop we will think about the role of fat in our society and of the individual's sense of bodily self in relationship to others. We will consider how we can apply the general insights of therapeutic work with eating disorders to the specific problem of obesity, including some common issues around gaining emotional nourishment through over-eating. The concept of anxiety pathways in the body will be considered, and some common non-verbal defences involving food will be examined. Following some theoretical introductions to the subject we will explore experientially how to work therapeutically when over-eating is a source of distress. In addition, we will discuss how the body of the therapist and patient relate to each other and how this may be played-out relationally when weight is an issue.


Professor Julia Buckroyd
Julia Buckroyd is Emeritus Professor of Counselling at the University of Hertfordshire. From 2002 -2008 she was Professor of Counselling and from 2004-2008, Director of the Obesity and Eating Disorders Research Unit. She has been working in the field of eating disorders since 1984. Her original training was as an academic historian but she re-trained first as a counsellor at Birkbeck College, University of London and then as a psychotherapist with the Guild of Psychotherapists. Her first post as a student counsellor in 1984 was at London Contemporary Dance School where she became interested in eating disorders. Her first book on eating disorders, Eating Your Heart Out, (2nd edition, Vega, 1996) derives mostly from this experience. From 1994 - 2008 she worked at the University of Hertfordshire while continuing her clinical work as a therapist. Her work with dancers, including work relating to eating disorders was published in The Student Dancer (Dance Books, 2000)... More >>

Em Farrell
Em Farrell has worked with eating disordered patients since she set up the Elizabeth Gentle Centre in 1989. At that time she used CBT and massage therapy to help bulimics and anorexics. She then broadened her practice but retained her interest in eating disorders. She wrote Lost for Words: The Psychoanalysis of Anorexia and Bulimia in 1995, was the on-line agony columnist for eating problems and body image issues for Psychologies Magazine and ran a short course on how to work with Eating Disorders for Psychotherapists for a number of years at the Westminster Pastoral Foundation. She is currently setting up a bespoke specialist non-residential anorexic service. She recently completed a training in Intensive Short Term Dynamic Psychotherapy... More >>


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Self-funded: £130
Self-funded x 2: £220
Organisationally-funded: £200
CPD Hours

Certificates of attendance for 6 hours will be provided at the event

8 All Saints Street
N1 9RL

09.30 Registration and coffee
10:00 Start
11:15 Coffee
13:00 Lunch
15:15 Tea
17:00 End