HIDDEN BODIES AND REVEALING SANDS: THE BODY OF DRUG ADDICTS IN SANDPLAY THERAPY
Journal of Sandplay Therapy, Volume 17, Number 1, 2008
KEY WORDS: Body identity, body destruction, therapeutic relationship, borderline, addiction, Sandplay therapy, abandonment, homelessness, withdrawal, prostitution, poverty, imprisonment, sandtray, metaphor, body, clinical example.
ABSTRACT: The paper reflects on the disturbed, often violent relationship drug addict patients have with their body, when the body as object of pleasure demands the destruction of the same body through being exposed to the pain of syringes, the harmful consequences of overdose, contracted diseases, suffering invoked by withdrawal, loneliness, abandonment, life on the street, prostitution, poverty and imprisonment. The sandtray, as a metaphor of the body, can cause such dynamics to emerge. It can also help addicts to elaborate experiences of the body and in so doing seek alternative and less destructive paths that are more respectful of one’s body and that may lead to new joys.