The Immigrant Experience and the Development of a Bicultural Self

“An ocean could not explain the distance we have traveled.” – Jonathan S. Foer

Leaving one’s native country as an immigrant or refugee can be a life-changing and at times a traumatizing experience which may profoundly affect one’s self-concept, identity and object relations. The narratives constructed around immigration, the manner of adaptation to the new culture and feelings about the mother tongue versus the second language are all aimed at reflecting anxieties and conflicts of being a stranger in a foreign land. This talk addresses the personal significance of these feelings as they unfold in the therapeutic situation.

This workshop is designed to help the participant:

1. Discuss the experience of immigration from the perspective of a patient’s personal history.
2. Explore similarities and differences between immigration and moving to a different state within the same country.
3. Examine how therapy can assist in development and integration of a bicultural self.


Karina Balkh, Psya.D., Cert. Psya. emigrated from Russia in 1988. She is currently in private practice in Brookline, where she works extensively with immigrants from a variety of countries.

Price & Credit

$15 in Advance     |      $20 at Door
Students: No Charge
1.5 CE Credits