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Coleby Centre

1st Floor

2 Alma Road



DA14 4EA






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Continuous Professional Development

for Therapists


Hysterical Defences & the Histrionic Personality



How to work with Hysterical Defences & the Histrionic Personality


The HISTRIONIC personality adaptation exhibits an addiction to drama.  Acting-out is used as a way of protecting against feeling-in.  The primary defence is dissociation.  Artificial feelings are used as a shield against deep, real feelings.  Addictions such as drugs, alcohol, compulsive spending, eating disorders, promiscuity, love affairs, and fantasies of “one day my prince will come” also provide protection against memories and feelings too painful and shameful to bear.


In the HISTRIONIC personality there will frequently have been some form of sexual abuse.  The seductive father creates rivalry between mother and daughter.  Abuse can be “passive” where the daughter is used as a fantasy sex object; or “contact abuse”, where some form of sexual behaviour is acted out by the perpetrator.


The therapist needs to accompany the client back through the exploitations of childhood, supporting her in dismantling defences and vindicating herself from blame, in order to arrive at a point where she can think clearly and replace the longing for another with the longing to be herself.


This workshop will enable you to:


  • Understand the developmental origins of the exploited child


  • Recognise and identify defences, addictions and relationship behaviours


  • Learn to work with sexual abuse


  • Help the client to change the locus of control from external to internal


  • Help the client in constructing a non-dramatic cohesive self



This is a 1 day workshop.  The next date for this training will be on:

Friday, 12 April 2019





Please complete and submit the BOOKING FORM below and confirm your method of payment (you do not need a PayPal account to securely and conveniently make your payment here - select Guest checkout)

Balance of fees required not less than 4 weeks prior to the commencement of the workshop


For our Training Terms & Conditions, please see here.











If this date is not suitable, please let us know by registering your interest in this training and we'll contact you when we have the next dates arranged.




Coleby Centre, Sidcup - 1st Floor, 2 Alma Road, SIDCUP, Kent DA14 4EA

Easy access from the A2 and A20, 30 minutes from London Charing Cross/Cannon Street to Sidcup train station