151 W. 26th St
All too frequently, therapists are unable to claim the fees they desire even from clients who can afford to pay them. Through exploration of our own experience of desire and the complicated feelings that money stirs in us both personally and in our work with patients, the goal of this presentation is to offer vital new perspectives on, and resolution to, our resistances to earning and abundance. We help our patients in every other area but often leave money out because of our own inhibition about having and because of a lack of knowledge and skills in this area. We can only take our patients as far as we ourselves are willing to go and for far too long the thorniest (and juiciest) issues around money have been left out of the therapeutic process.
Therapists’ inhibition about their own needs is a multi-determined problem which includes: difficulties separating from their original family role (most therapists were early caretakers in their families), conflicts within the field itself about charging money for this service, clinicians’ anxieties about being in conflict with their clients and the all too real fear that discontented and angry clients will leave treatment. This workshop proposes that by working through our own conflicts about money we are better able to help our clients change their dysfunctional behavior and attitudes about money. By exploring this conflict as it comes up directly between client and therapist, specifically around the client’s fee and the fee negotiation, clients can address their financial difficulties in a new way.
Since the fee is a powerful intrusion of the practitioner’s need into the treatment, making financial demands of the patient requires the therapist’s willingness to embrace conflict. This workshop will demonstrate how a clash of subjectivities, rather than something to be dreaded and avoided, can be used to start the necessary struggle toward mutual recognition, increased maturation, and furthered self-actualization of both client and therapist.
Kachina Myers LCSW, ACSW, faculty and supervisor at the Institute for Contemporary Psychotherapy (ICP), is also a past supervisor and co-founder of ALGAP (Association of Lesbian-and-Gay-Affirmative Psychotherapists). Her article Show Me the Money: (The ‘Problem’ of) The Therapist’s Desire, Subjectivity, and Relationship to the Fee published in Contemporary Psychoanalysis is now considered a classic on the topic of money in psychotherapy. She has been quoted in O, The Oprah Magazine, Redbook, and DailyWorth.com about the wide and varied emotional relationships people have with their money. Kachina maintains a psychoanalytic psychotherapy and supervision practice in Manhattan as well as offering group and individual supervision to clinicians on earning, practice building, and the clinical dynamics of money.