Transference-focused psychotherapy (TFP) is a scientifically validated method of psychotherapy that was developed to treat patients with personality disorders (initially for patients with borderline personality disorder). Its creator is Otto F. Kernberg and his team of collaborators from the Personality Disorders Institute (Weil Cornell Medical College, New York). TFP was created as a result of the integration of knowledge from psychoanalytic theories with contemporary achievements in the field of neurobiology and attachment research.
The essence of TFP is recognizing and naming the emotional states experienced by the patient in the relationships with others and how the patient experiences themselves and the other person in a given relationship, as well as integrating contradictory or unacceptable aspects in experiencing themselves and others. All this is done on the basis of the patient’s relationship with the therapist, which is the subject of a thorough exploration and in which the patterns of relationships are enacted. Understanding the context of emotional experiences and their integration leads to a more coherent experience of oneself and other people, which results in an increased ability to create lasting, stable relationships and the ability to function more satisfactorily in the area of professional life. In TFP, great attention is paid to the correct diagnosis and the contract, which constitutes the necessary framework for the treatment process.