This conference follows the publication in June this year of Joy Schaverien’s book Boarding School Syndrome: The Psychological Trauma of the Privileged Child.
Some of the themes from the book will be explored in this half-day conference. The aim is to consider working analytically with those affected and to create a clinically focused discourse. The tradition of the British Establishment of sending their young children away from home to be educated may be seen as a bizarre form of conditioning with enduring psychological and social consequences. Children left at a young age in boarding school may suffer profound emotional deprivation. The initial losses, of home and family, constitute a significant but unseen bereavement. For some, bullying and abuse by staff or older children may compound the distress and terror of abandonment. These multiple wounds may produce a form of dissociative amnesia where the true self retracts.