What is it about?

Issues of countertransference and personal insecurities are bound to affect therapeutic and supervisory relationships. As a Puerto Rican, white-skinned man, I experienced this in my most recent clinical work. I encountered countertransference issues concerning power and privilege and the intersectionality of my identities with those of my clients. It is very common for countertransference to occur in a parallel process in the supervisory relationship, which is how I came to recognize my challenges with certain clients. This parallel process helped me discuss my insecurities and shame with my supervisor. Interpersonal supervision enabled me to feel more comfortable in working through these types of countertransference. Interpersonal supervision facilitates an authentic, honest supervisory relationship and a postcolonial approach to supervision. This empowered me to have difficult conversations with my supervisor and gain more awareness of how and why I engaged interpersonally with my clients while also helping me to gain therapy skills, ultimately making me a more effective therapist—in particular, a more effective interpersonal therapist.

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Why is it important?

The issues discussed in this article encourage supervisors to bring into awareness how the supervisee’s identity markers are interacting with those of their supervisor and clients. It particularly highlights that, by bringing these interactions into awareness, conversations of the power dynamics that are affecting both their supervisory and therapeutic relationships will arise. By gaining this awareness, the supervisor- supervisee relationship will improve, and the supervisee will be more mindful of the interaction of identities, and the dynamics they bring, within their therapeutic relationships.


This article captures the benefits of approaching supervision through an Interpersonal Post-Colonial lens.

Manuel Blasini
George Fox University

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Interpersonal postcolonial supervision: Facilitating conversations of countertransference., Training and Education in Professional Psychology, August 2019, American Psychological Association (APA), DOI: 10.1037/tep0000239.
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