What is Disability Psychotherapy

Psychotherapy focuses on the complexity of the mind and how a person’s past affects their present. Disability Psychotherapy is the application of this long established knowledge base to understand and work with the specific issues that relate to disability, impairment and handicap.

Dr Pat Frankish, Consultant Clinical Psychologist, along with esteemed colleagues, Dr Valerie Sinason and Professor Nigel Beail, has dedicated much of her long and distinguished career to developing ideas and practice around Disability Psychotherapy.

Fundamental to the approach is the focus on the emotional lives of people with a disability, an area often overlooked in service provision. Emphasis is placed on understanding the pain and distress of disability, which, as well as early and later life traumas, can exaggerate the original disability, further handicapping the individual. Disability Psychotherapy works to enhance an individual’s emotional development and independence.

Disability Psychotherapy is especially relevant in the field of learning disability, but is also applicable when working with people who have physical and neurological disabilities, as well as older adults, people with chronic mental health problems and those labelled as having a personality disorder. The ideas and principles can be used not only with individuals, but also at a systems level enabling the networks around a person to support and enable their emotional growth.

Not only does the Frankish Training website offer access to training and support in Disability Psychotherapy, but we will also keep updated with news, developments, articles and guest lectures relating to Disability Psychotherapy.