Walking into the Void: How to be with suicidal despair

Two Day Workshop in Sydney 
Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd February 2014 for practitioners of counselling and psychotherapy.

What happens when despair is so great that it feels like it can’t be spoken about? Perhaps the intensity of the despair is so great that the person loses a sense of self and feels like they become the despair. It can be hard to live in the world when you feel you are ‘despair’ personified, so silence descends around the despair and the person becomes disconnected from life. Life becomes the space between living and dying – a liminal place - on the threshold of life and death, a void perhaps?

Using a phenomenological approach this workshop will invite participants to explore these ideas as a way of working with the suicidal urge, by considering despair as an expression of a person feeling that they cannot be ‘how they are’ in ‘the world as they see it is’. By stepping into the void and moving towards the suicidal person’s despair we can invite them to re-connect to the world and bring a voice into the silence around their despair. By disrupting the silence and disconnection we may see that the suicidal urge is in fact a call to live life more fully, rather than a call to die in despair.

Facilitated by Greg Roberts

Greg is an accredited Social Worker with specialisation in the field of grief, bereavement and trauma. Nine years ago he founded a suicide bereavement support group and, in 2008, co-founded the Suicide Prevention Awareness Network (SPAN) in Victoria. He has more than 25 years' experience in adult education and currently is an associate educator with the Australian Centre for Grief and Bereavement (ACGB), facilitating professional development workshops Australia-wide. Greg also works in private practice as a counsellor, supervisor and educator.

PD Points: 12

Cost $525 ($420 if registering by 11 January 2014)

Hosted by the Centre for Existential Practice

Visit the CEP website to register for this workshop and for information on other events.

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