Tracy Sidesinger, PsyD is a clinical psychologist bilocated between Flatbush, Brooklyn and Upstate New York. Her interests include the intersection of psychoanalysis and feminism; motherhood studies; community psychoanalysis; the arts; and spirituality. She serves on the board of the Museum of Motherhood as residency coordinator. Currently she also serves as the Psychotherapy Action Network’s representative to the Mental Health Liaison Group, a nationwide policy group which advocates for equitable mental health resources through legislative means.
- April 29, 2022. Reimagining Community in the Psychoanalytic Field. Virtual Grand Rounds. Austen Riggs Center. Zoom.
- March 31, 2022. Community Psychoanalysis: Thoughts and Experiences Beyond the Private Office. Society for Psychoanalysis and Psychoanalytic Psychology Div 39 of the American Psychoanalytic Association Spring 2022 Meeting. Zoom.
- Sidesinger, T. (2021). The Feminine Yes : Return Me To Excess. Studies in Gender and Sexuality, 22(1): 4-15.
The current state of mental health care in the United States is inadequate to meet the needs of our local and national communities. Mental health care has increasingly moved toward a privatized model, following principles of American Capitalism rather than principles endemic to the psyche itself. Privatization has limited access to care along class lines concurrent with a profit-driven and merit-based system, or else pathologized and stigmatized care as a matter of institutionalized symptom reduction. Furthermore, privatization has removed psychic experience and symptomatology from the interpersonal, socio-cultural, historical, and political contexts in which they emerge.
Foundations for a way toward adequately addressing the mental health needs in the United States can be found in relational theory and matriarchal governance structures. Specifically, relational theory already moves the privatized mind toward interpersonal, dyadic aspects of the psyche which are experienced in relationship (Aron, 1999), and a contemporary “community turn” recognizes that the interpersonal nature of mental health extends beyond dyadic relationships to communities and governments (Hassinger & Pivnick, 2022). Matriarchal governance structures have long offered a form of leadership that maintains authority without assuming values of competition, financial profit, or hierarchical privileging of rightness, but are based on meeting the needs of all its members and the health of the total system (Vaughan, 2019; Shiva, 2020). These are considered for the extant offerings to inform creative, new developments in effectively meeting today’s mental health needs.