Louise Malan: Clinical Psychologist

Louise Malan: Clinical Psychologist
Louise Malan, Clinical Psychologist Port Elizabeth

Louise is a Port Elizabeth Clinical Psychologist and has been practicing for the past 19 years. She coördinates the PE Psychoanalytic Reading Group and writes a blog for the PE Express.

She specializes in:

  • Adult psychotherapy and works with all emotional, psychological, sexual and relationship problems.
  • Early childhood emotional development and parenting issues.
  • Mothering and mother-infant bonding.
  • Divorce and adoption related issues.
  • Marital therapy.
  • Psychoanalytic psychotherapy.

Louise is passionate about helping her clients in a way that will help them for many years after terminating the therapy. Insight gained, losses mourned and changes made have a major impact on a person’s functioning for the rest of his/her life. She explores with clients how problems first made their way into their lives and what the ways are to overcome these problematic influences. Louise prefers working from home as this provides her clients with privacy and a peaceful environment.

Louise’s theoretical orientation is psychoanalytic. This approach is aimed at an in depth understanding of the conscious and unconscious aspects of functioning. She believes that internal views of the self, others and the world are formed during an individual’s childhood. The ways that emotional needs and different emotions are dealt with during childhood continues to influence the person. She will help you understand why you think, feel and do as you do. She has a thorough knowledge of human psychological development, the meaning of symptoms and the consequences of specific traumas and experiences.

When working with couples Louise works from the understanding that we unconsciously choose partners who match us psychologically in some way. Initially, during the honeymoon phase, everything might feel wonderful, but as time goes by both people’s internal worlds (personality, fears, assumptions, unmet needs and emotional wounds) start reacting to one another and can soon lead to problems.

It is important for Louise to see her clients as people with struggles and not to judge their feelings, thoughts or actions. Judgement is in opposition to insight and therapy is about insight. She explores how unconscious patterns originating in the client’s past play themselves out in current relationships.

The type of problems that she works with includes:

  • Problematic relationships with eating (Eating disorders: anorexia, bulimia, obesity)
  • Dealing with significant events and changes (Adjustment disorders)
  • Feelings of extreme loss and sadness (dealing with loss and bereavement)
  • Depression (including feelings of not being good enough) and bipolar disorders
  • Anxiety, separation anxiety, panic attacks (overwhelming fear and panic), stress
  • Personality disorders (including borderline, dependent and narcissistic personalities)
  • Sexual concerns, gender identity and sexual perversions
  • Somatic disorders (physical problems with a strong emotional component)
  • Obsessive Compulsive disorders
  • Intense anger, fear of own destructiveness and self-harm
  • Difficulty in Family and Relationships
  • Marital therapy

Another focus is early childhood and mothering. The importance of the early years in a child’s emotional development and the enduring impact that this has on the person’s functioning, sense of security and emotional health are well known. She is the mother of three children and feels strongly about children’s emotional needs. Early mothering is very important because a baby’s first relationships become the template for later relationships. Louise enjoys working with mothers and young children. She has a keen interest and deep understanding of the types of issues that mothers struggle with. She is also very knowledgeable about children’s early emotional needs and developmental stages and did a series of talks on childhood emotional development for Radio Algoa.

Over the years she has worked with many adults who were adopted as babies and she understands the struggles that adopted individuals have to deal with. She is also very aware of the enormous impact of divorce on families and works in this field.

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