Short-Term Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (STPP)

Who we help

Short-Term Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (STPP) is offered to young people with depression who have been troubled by quite serious worries and unhappiness for some time. 

How we help

The young person will be offered 28 weekly sessions, lasting 50 minutes.  The day and time of the session is negotiated between the therapist and the young person to take account of the demands of school, college and/or work. During the sessions the young person can explore how they manage relationships with others and discuss how they are dealing with the process of becoming gradually more independent and more responsible for themselves. Parents and carers will also have a chance to think over the complexities of parenting an adolescent.  

In psychoanalytic therapy, there is no set agenda.  Instead, people are encouraged to talk about what is on their mind.  Psychotherapists are experienced in helping young people to convey their problems in whatever way is right for them.  Sharing upsetting memories, thoughts and feelings can be a relief in itself, but the therapist will also aim to help them understand themselves better, and to start to be able to think about difficult aspects of their experience rather than be overwhelmed by feelings.

What is said in the sessions is kept confidential between the young person and their therapist.  The only exception to this arises if the therapist thinks they are at risk (from themselves or someone else).  In such a situation there will be a discussion between therapist and young person about who else in the family or community might need to know to help in keeping things safe.

Alongside the young person's therapy, parents and carers will be offered some sessions (usually up to 7) with another therapist. If the young person is 16 or over, they can decide whether or not they want their parents to be involved.  

A link to school or college may sometimes be helpful and will be arranged if appropriate with the young person’s permission.

At the end of the therapy, the possibility for a review meeting a few months later is usually offered to the young person and also to their parents.  One of the features of STPP is that changes in how people see things may continue to evolve after the therapy has ended.  This is because the therapy can help people become more aware themselves of their strengths and vulnerabilities, and better at managing the ups and downs which are always part of adolescence and of living with adolescents.  

How to find out more

To make a referral for STPP click here to complete an enquiry form.

If you would like to find out more about STPP, please contact the Clinical Support Officer or download our information sheets using the links below:

  • Parents please click here
  • Young person please click here