Various studies in the science and culture fields have long recognised the power of play in facilitating human development and therapeutic processes. This paper focuses on the developmental potential of play in psychodynamic therapy supervision for social workers who function as therapists, but its conclusions might be applied to supervision of other social work interventions. It is suggested that play is represented in supervision by an illusion shared by the supervisor and supervisee of their complete togetherness in the supervisee’s clinical struggles and clinical responsibility. This element of play temporarily reduces supervisees’ sense of loneliness in their responsibility for clients’ welfare and for the integrity of therapeutic processes. This illusion is healthy and growth promoting when supervisees acknowledge reality and when, by repeatedly experiencing this illusion, they assimilate it into their professional self. Through such a process, supervisees eventually internalise a professional community of supervisors, colleagues, and writers, who become symbolic representations that can be projected onto reality and facilitate professional interactions.
Bibliographical notePublisher Copyright:
© 2019 GAPS.
- professional development
- shared illusion
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Health(social science)
- Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
- Drug guides