Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):7-8
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):11
Even without being a truly psychoanalytic object (in Bionian terms), the secret can be articulated with many elements of psychoanalytic theory and practice.
Implied from the start by the psychoanalytic frame (a secure place hidden from the others and from where nothing can `escape` without patient’s accord), or by the analyst’s `neutral` attitude (allowing secrets to be kept as long as needed for the patient and to be revealed in time as `gifts` for the analyst or as revelations for himself), the secret has a structuring function in setting out boundaries between interior and exterior, while also enabling a personal place/space involved in creating personal identity. Read more
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):15-28
The psychoanalytic treatment of patients suffering from a somatic disease or from chronical pain covers an important field. When confronted with those patients the psychoanalyst needs a theoretical background and technical adjustments. This paper exposes the theoretical corpus of the Paris School of Psychosomatics and relates three clinical cases. Read more
body, soma, regression, mentalization, operational thinking, essential depressio
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):29-44
This is the second part of the paper in which fusion is considered as one of the fundamental mechanisms of mental functioning, an essential element in every object relation – with variations only in the degree of participation – along with the component connoted by separateness. There is a continuous dialectic relationship between levels of fusion and separateness. Human beings are characterized by an extremely sophisticated and continuously changing boundary system.
This part of the paper focuses on some aspects of the role of fusion within the psychoanalytic relation, the mother child matrix, the group mental activity and the meta-ego dimension. Read more
fusion, separateness, psychoanalytic relation, mother-child matrix, groupality, meta-ego
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):45-54
Initiated as a search for the truth hidden by the symptoms of hysteria, psychoanalysis, but in fact psychoanalysts, had a particular relationship with the secret over time. Beyond the historical truth of using the word „secret” to name meetings back in the time when the first group of psychoanalysts was being formed, beyond the stigma of secret society or even occult society with which the psychoanalyst society was then labelled, or, more precisely, the community of psychoanalysts was labelled (some still believe this is the case), the question of secrecy has been present since the beginning of psychoanalysis, not only in the minds of those who, in one form or another, were approaching psychoanalysis, but right in the center of the experiences of psychoanalysts’ practices.
Between confidentiality and urging the patient to say “whatever goes through their mind”, between the phantasm of the primitive scene and the construction of intimacy, the meaning of the secret carries the psychoanalyst forward towards revealing the pathogenic truth and the construction of the sanogenoic mystery. From free association to evenly suspended attention, we have a sinuous trajectory of certain affects that, freeing the sensorial that carried them, inscribe the papyrus of the Ego’s history, detached from the Id. Read more
secret, truth, analytic situation, symptom, interpretation, trauma
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):55-66
The article covers diverse approaches of the term secret: individual, group, social, transgenerational and psychoanalytical, with reference to various psychoanalysts having reflecting about this topic. The author pays special attention to importance of secrets in the psychoanalytic relationship. Conscious and unconscious secrets are brought into play in transfer-countertransfer, stressing on the importance of tolerating the secrets without forcing its disclosure. The analyst’s capacity to tolerate the unspoken and wait for the
timely moments of intervention can allow the development of the internal space in the analytical process. Read more
secret, lies, family secrets/transgenerational secrets, confidentiality, new technologies, intimacy
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):67-84
In this paper, the author tries to underline some aspects about one of the most important secrets: the secret of our own mortality. It is a paradox, all of us know that we will eventually die, but this knowledge is quite unbearable and makes us anxious, which is why it is very difficult for us to represent our death.
This secret of mortality is related to what Freud called “the biological rock” – our supreme and ultimate limit! – which represents the constitutional, biological dimension of the human being in its uniqueness and the way in which our psyche manages this reality, impossible to change.
The first part of paper is an exploration in the nature of secrets, healthy and pathogenic ones, known or unknown, conscious and unconscious. There are secrets which represent the intimate core of every person, what Winnicott called “an incommunicado element”. This is very precious, secret and sacred, and allows us to maintain a constant creative dialogue with ourselves and others while also ensuring our psychic sanity. There are also other secrets, pathogenic ones, which we encounter in the perverse, narcissistic structures and that disturb the relations with others.
There is a third category of secrets which we call ‘The secrets of Polichinelle’. They are like taboo subjects, as nobody touches them, but everybody knows them. In this category we find all the secrets connected to sexuality and, as a normal extension of them, the secrets linked to our own mortality.
In the second part of the paper, the author presents some vignettes from a case, which illustrate the theme of loss and the difficulty in accepting the limits set by the biological rock. Read more
the secret of mortality, ‘incommunicado element’, mourning, the loss of object, the biological rock, the acceptance of limits
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):85-116
The hiding aspect of shame makes the study of shame difficult. In this article we aim to show through Hanna’s case study how shame manifests and develops during the course of one psychotherapy process. This will be done using Assimilation analysis (APES) and Dialogical Sequence Analysis (DSA) to show in detail one idiosyncratic developmental path through which the relationship toward the problematic shame experience changes and develops in psychotherapy. Results show how the manifestation of shame toward the problematic experience of being seen was present in the first moments of the first meeting, but also how during the sequence of sessions 7 – 9 Hanna’s relationship toward shame evoked referent unveils and developed gradually through therapeutic work from assimilation stage 2 to reaching stage 5-6 at the end of the 9th hour. This study shows how Hanna was able to reach a new kind of active agency toward the shame that, in the beginning, held the agency in her ’community of voices’, and how this understanding of shame’s developing and hiding nature can be of use in a clinically meaningful way. Read more
shame, secrets, agency, DSA, assimilation analysis
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):117-134
Following the secret’s customs, encountering it in the myriad manifestations of psychic life and relational domino effect, the current work separates the secret from the act of secretiveness and from trauma, with which the former often confused. The fact that it is intrinsically linked to truth, as it is hidden information waiting to be found, defines the secret as a process involved in working with information-about-self and the self: it is a joy to be hidden and a disaster not to be discovered. This hidden – found process that accompanies us our whole life is transformed according to the biological and psychological stages one must go through. Thus, the secret is interpreted differently, passing through successive stages of development. From the archaic game of “hide-and-seek”, through the primitive scene of “peeping through the keyhole” and discovering the secret of one’s own genitals, continuing with the type of secret offered by a relationship of friendship in latency, reaching the de-secretisation and de-sacralisation of adolescence, the secret is an “act of secrecy” that requires an interior architecture as well as borders between the internal and external universe. Otherwise, the “act of secrecy” fails and turns into secretiveness, a failure of the hidden - found process, because either nothing can be hidden (as in paranoid mechanisms) or everything must be hidden (as in trauma mechanisms). Read more
the incommunicado self, hidden-found process, act of secrecy, failure of secrecy, secretiveness, anti-knowledge
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):137-150
The author argues for a conception of the oedipal complex that excludes the idea of a pre-oedipal phase which, according to him, comes from a confusion with the pre-genital. The author seeks to identify the existence of a “couple object” present early on in the young child whose pre-history he returns to in the first lineaments of a form of “being with”, as in the first form of recording relational models concerning the meeting with the first objects. This matrix will then be made more complex over time and brought into crisis in the “oedipal crisis”, and the way in which the child will be able to meet and go through this crisis, to organize himself and to organize the solutions to the crisis, will configure its model of “oedipal organization”. Read more
Oedipus, patterns of being with, couple object, precocious interactions, oedipal crisis, oedipal organization
Rom J Psychoanal 2019, 13(1):153-176
This paper considers what occurs during midlife when the certainty-uncertainty tension that inhabits every subject is affected. The body with its drives becomes the messenger who announces the passage of time and life’s finitude. Time is challenged by one’s own body, triggering a psychic work that will enable the subject to deal with his/her own transience. Based on Freud’s writings, the author suggests that one’s own body is experienced as an annoying intruder that now bothers, because what is being touched is the idea of his/her own immortality. The emotional state that is generated is one of perplexity and the experience, one of disorientation, accompanied by a feeling of alienation. Each subject’s uniqueness will give him/her (or not) the possibility of passing from a feeling of alienation to the re-appropriation of that foreign-familiar zone. Due to the psychic impact generated, a change of paradigm is also put forward, if the necessary resources are available. Once the limitations of personal time and the uncertainty of living are recognized, the opening up of what-is-to-come can paradoxically take place, enabling the re-launching of one’s own desire. Read more
midlife, uncertainty, finitude, body, transience, what-is-to-come
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):179-194
The present work compares two literary figures, imagining the internal conflict of each, in connection to a secret. In Hamlet’s case (Hamlet by W. Shakespeare), it is a traumatic impossibility to reveal a secret that leads to his death, while for Gregers (H. Ibsen’s The Wild Duck), the opposite occurs, his inability to keep a secret leads directly to the death of another character. In this work the secret is viewed as the conscious concealment of content, while the motives for keeping or disclosing it at any cost are unconscious. Read more
secret, truth, to say, internal conflict, conscious content, unconscious motive
Rom J Psychoanal 2020, 13(1):197-204
The article focuses on psychic mechanisms at work in a life experience of maximum intensity: imprisonment awaiting the death penalty. “Dialogue with death”, the memories of Arthur Koestler on the most traumatic period of his life – his stay in the prison of Seville during the Spanish Civil War – was initially published in 1937, as an important part of the “Spanish Testament”, and was in itself one of the most significant testimonial works of the 20th century on the subject of death. The perspective to which we have subjected it draws on psychoanalysis and is based, more precisely, on the Freudian theory on defenses against traumatic affects. Read more
Koestler, imprisonment, death sentence, Spanish Civil War, defense mechanisms