FROM SELF-HARM TO SELF-COMPASSION
Prof. Dora PERCZEL-FORINTOS
Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment, through a gentle, nurturing lens. Mindfulness based cognitive therapy (MBCT) proved to be effective in preventing relapses in chronic depressivion and can be applied in suicide prevention also. According to Williams's model of entrapment, a person becomes suicidal when perceives the situation as unsolvable and feels hopeless. In such cases self-destructive beliefs are activated. The focus of MBCT in this state is on identifying suicidal cognitions and helping the person to take a distance from self-destructive cognitions and cultivate mindfulness as well as self-compassion. Borderline patients (BPD) also get frequently suicidal due to their mindfulness deficit (Wuppermann, 2008) however, they commit non-suicidal self-injuries. If BPD patients learn to observe their self-destructive thoughts and emotions without reacting to or interpreting them, self-harm can be descreased. In this presentation I will present the adaptation of MBCT for patients with non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI). The intervention was based on the 8-week MBCT protocol by Williams et al. (2017), which was originally developed to reduce suicidal ideation in recurrent depression. I will also present the modified protocol focusing on the most important aspects of BPD such as emotional dysregulation and impulse control. 49 patients filled in pre- and post-intervention measures: SCID-II, mindfulness (FFMQ), emotion regulation (CERQ), BDI, Beck Hoplessness Scale and a self-compassion scale. Our results indicated significant reduction in the frequency of NSSI with a large effect size (p<0.001; r=0.82), and also in rumination and in maladaptive emotion regulation strategies. Self-compassion, self-esteem and some aspects of mindfulness such as decription and being non-judgmental increased significantly. In sum, the 8-week MBCT seems to be promising in decreasing emotion dysregulation and self-destructive behaviour.
NARRATIVE MEDICINE. THE WOUNDED NARRATOR
Dr. Piera GIACCONI
Those who take care of people in the professional or voluntary sector - from the administrator to the surgeon, from the counselor to the physiotherapist, from the psychologist to the care giver - have a constant need to nourish their roots of humanity in order to have the necessary energy to process and transform suffering. Learning to listen to the suffering of the people who care for others, giving meaning to the individual pain of those who carry out a profession at the service of others, offering respect, understanding and psychological safety to those who show their weaknesses and ask for help in the circle of colleagues, means discovering that " we are all in the same boat” as Marina Abramovich provocatively wrote in October 2019. Or as Rita Charon, one of the main exponents of narrative medicine, says, “we are all the same, because we have to die”. What makes us equal is also the sacredness of being, deposited in everyone since birth, which is recognized through the expression of Human Qualities. We will play by giving them a name, listening to those who are close to us today at the congress and yet are unknown, and train ourselves to recognize them on the telephone when we provide service to the community.
Art therapist, storyteller and performer, she created over 20 years ago an original method of narrative medicine The Art of the Storyteller in Narrative Medicine with thousand-year-old fairy tales, Narrative Game® and GENRENTM Imaginal Breathing, certified internationally since 2018. Founder of the Italian School of Storytellers of Udine. She teaches the International Master in Partnership and Native Traditions. Literature, psychology and society, University of Udine, Italy.