Sunday, April 17, 2016
8:45 a.m.–1:00 p.m.


Ruth S. Harley University Center
Tagged: Derner School of Psychology, Continuing Education

Nancy McWilliams – Self-Defeating Patients: Implications for Psychotherapy

Continuing Education Course - Ongoing, Social Work CE Ongoing

This conference is designed to be relevant to licensed mental health professionals at all levels of training and experience.

Conference Summary

This conference focuses on self-defeating (masochistic and/or aggrieved) patients and the difficulties in treating these challenging individuals.

Nancy McWilliams, Ph.D., has been a leader in advancing our understanding of varying types of depressive and masochistic personalities and the different treatment options to be considered based on this understanding.

How can therapists help characterologically depressive patients and pathologically self-defeating ones? Dr. McWilliams will explore this question with reference to case material and a DVD of a therapy session she conducted, which illustrates the principles and theory that guide her treatment interventions. Reference will be made to contemporary literature from clinical psychoanalysis, personality psychology and research in attachment and neuroscience.

3.5 CE credits

Learning Objectives

At the conclusion of this conference, participants will be able to:

  1. Explain the differences between predominantly depressive and predominantly self-defeating personality patterns.
  2. Demonstrate an ability to differentiate predominantly depressive and predominantly self-defeating personality patterns.
  3. Discuss the clinical implications of the differences between predominantly depressive and predominantly self-defeating personality patterns.
  4. Identify and address therapeutically the tendency of depressive patients not to be conscious of their criticism or devaluation of their therapists and others.

Conference Speaker

Nancy McWilliams

Nancy McWilliams, Ph.D.

Nancy McWilliams, Ph.D.
Author, Psychoanalytic Diagnosis: Understanding Personality Structure in the Clinincal Process
Co-Author, Exploring Three Approaches to Psychotherapy

Featuring discussions of a DVD recording of Dr. McWilliams in a session with a self-defeating patient.

Nancy McWilliams, Ph.D., teaches at Rutgers University’s Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology and practices in Flemington, New Jersey. She is the author of Psychoanalytic Diagnosis: Understanding Personality Structure in the Clinical Process (1994, rev. ed. 2011), Psychoanalytic Case Formulation (1999) and Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy: A Practitioner’s Guide (2004). Her books have been translated into 15 languages and she lectures widely nationally and internationally. She was associate editor of the Psychodynamic Diagnostic Manual (2006) and is a former president of Division 39 (Psychoanalysis) of the American Psychological Association and an honorary member of the American Psychoanalytic Association.

Conference Schedule

All events take place in the Ruth S. Harley University Center, Rooms 201 and 202. 

8:45 a.m. Registration and Continental Breakfast
9:15 a.m. Welcome and introductions
Mary Beth Cresci, Ph.D., ABPP
9:30 a.m. Nancy McWilliams, Ph.D.
Introductory comments on personality and psychotherapy
10:00 a.m. Self-defeating dynamics as differentiated from depressive dynamics and the implications of this distinction for psychotherapy
11:15 a.m. DVD presentation of a full intake session with a self-defeating patient
12:15 p.m. Nancy McWilliams, Ph.D.
Discussion of the video with additional clinical vignettes, theoretical considerations and clinical challenges.
1:00 p.m. Conclusion

Registration Information

Early Registration Fees (on or before April 4, 2016)

  • General Public: $125
  • Derner Institute and Other Adelphi Alumni and Faculty: $90
  • Current Derner Institute Graduate and Postgraduate Students (with ID): $20
  • Current Adelphi Students in other programs (with ID): $50
  • Graduate Students From Other Universities (With ID): $60

Regular Registration Fees (after April 4, 2016)

  • General Public: $150
  • Derner Institute and Other Adelphi Alumni and Faculty: $110
  • Current Derner Institute and Other Adelphi Students (With ID): $70
  • Graduate Students From Other Universities (With ID): $80

» Register Now

Conference Committee

Mary Beth Cresci, Ph.D., ABPP
Stephen Hyman, Ph.D., chair
Elaine Seitz, Ph.D.

For further information about the program and to attend a free orientation meeting, please contact:

Stephen Hyman, Ph.D.
e –

Tagged: Derner School of Psychology, Continuing Education
Apply Now
Request Information