Vesna works collaboratively with her clients and uses a range of therapeutic approaches individualised to her clients’ specific needs. These include Mentalisation-based Treatment, Interpersonal Therapy, Acceptance and Commitment Therapy, Mindfulness, Cognitive Behaviour Therapy, systems and family therapies, and other attachment-based approaches.
Mentalisation-based treatments integrate evidence-based attachment and psychotherapy research with contemporary psychoanalysis. These aim to foster connections between the inner experience of relationships and their representation in the client’s life narrative. By working through current emotions, including those that may be reflected within the therapeutic relationship, clients form a more coherent sense of self and develop more secure attachment styles. This approach can be effective for the treatment of severe personality, mood and eating disorders, as well as more general psychological problems of well-being and sense of self.
Vesna’s clinical interests centre on issues of personality psychopathology, trauma, mood disorders, health/body-related difficulties and early attachment relationships. She has expertise in both parental and infant mental health and the assessment of intergenerational risk and protective factors in the parent-infant relationship. Her present academic work links empirical research into parental reflective function with psychoanalytic theory for use in the public health service.
She has worked in inpatient and outpatient services, with adults, children, and families experiencing a range of mental health problems. She is a member of Australian Psychological Society (MAPS) and Australian Association of Infant Mental Health (AAIMHI).