Joy in the Psychotherapy Relationship

Naomi, one of my long-term clients and a therapist herself, has been talking in session lately about joy. The importance of joy in the mother-infant relationship, in adult romantic relationships, and in the relationship between therapist and client. Her ideas have grown out of her own practice, partially stimulated by our work together and informed… Continue reading Joy in the Psychotherapy Relationship

Why Free Association is So Difficult

Most people understand what free association means: to voice all thoughts, feelings and ideas that come to mind during a therapy session, without deciding in advance whether they’re relevant or “worth saying.” At the beginning of traditional psychoanalysis, clients are instructed to freely associate and occasionally reminded to do so as the treatment proceeds. We… Continue reading Why Free Association is So Difficult

The Invisible Child

I’ve always struggled with the term attachment, used in my profession to denote the relationship that is supposed to develop between mother and infant during the earliest months of life. I may be too concrete, but it makes me think of those poor monkeys in Harlow’s experiment, clinging to that cloth-covered metal skeleton; it seems… Continue reading The Invisible Child

Transference: Uses and Abuses

A visitor to the site submitted several questions about transference in response to an earlier post, and I thought they were so interesting and useful, they deserved a lengthy reply — hence today’s post. As a prelude, I’d like to say a few things about how I view the transference, which is different from the… Continue reading Transference: Uses and Abuses