1st Edition

Pregnancy, Assisted Reproduction and Psychoanalysis

Edited By Renata Viola Vives, Ana Teresa Vale Copyright 2025
    200 Pages
    by Routledge

    200 Pages
    by Routledge

    Pregnancy, Assisted Reproduction and Psychoanalysis reflects on contemporary views on pregnancy, while offering guidance on how to work with women and couples experiencing infertility as well as the unique issues raised by having a child through Assisted Reproduction Technologies.

    Comprised of chapters written by eminent analysts working with infertile couples and women, and parents who have a child born from Assisted Reproduction, this book offers insightful ways to better understand the challenges these patients undertake and the various issues this might bring into the analytic room. The contributors examine the myriad psychic problems subjects are confronted with which could impact their ability to bond with children born through ART: the mourning processes infertility entails, the identification with the fertile parental couple, the unconscious representation of origin, the representation of the primal scene, and the process of symbolic affiliation. They consider the working-through these processes necessitate in order to enable filiation and healthy parenting, and give invaluable tools to the analyst to enable the promotion of psychological growth. Throughout, the chapters address the emotions that infertility summons in which both patient and analyst find a spectrum of unconscious phantasies and anxieties.

    This book is an essential read for psychoanalysts and other professionals working in the field of ART, as well as those interested in motherhood and its vicissitudes and intersection with psychoanalysis.





    Renata Viola Vives and Ana Teresa Vale

    2.Fantasies of origin and the origin of fantasies

     Paola Marion, with contribution by Eleonora Di Lucia, Veronika Garms, Selene Mancinelli & Giovanna Pavanello

    3.Illusion, illusional belief and mourning in infertility

     Emanuela Quagliata

    4.The empty cradle: Envy, shame and shaming in infertility

     Melis Tanik Sivri

    5.Reflections on the concept of “passion for a child”

     Graciela Cardó Soria

    6.Emotional aspects of donors

    Nancy Tame Ayub

    7.Live babies and dead babies – Pregnancy and pregnancy loss in analysis

    Ana Teresa Vale

    8.As good as it gets: Psychoanalysis as a fertile encounter

    Conceição Tavares de Almeida

    9.The taboo of egg donation: From fairy tales to myth

    Sofia Barandiaran

    10.Symbolic affiliation in a case of egg donation

    Renata Viola Vives 

    11.Motherhood without pregnancy: Surrogacy, a challenge for femininity and maternal preoccupation

    Christine Anzieu-Premmereur 

    12.Surrogacy, at the origins of the construction of a family

    Katy Bogliatto




    Renata Viola Vives is a psychoanalyst for children, adolescents and adults and a Latin-American member of COWAP. She has worked in the field of assisted reproduction for 15 years.

    Ana Teresa Vale is a Clinical Psychologist and Psychoanalyst living and working in Lisbon. European member of COWAP, she is also part of the Editorial Board of the Portuguese Psychoanalytic Journal.

    This book is the valuable contribution of psychoanalysts from different regions who have developed ideas and hypotheses about the vicissitudes of pregnancy in cases of infertility and reproductive techniques. The different chapters written by psychoanalysts with vast experience in this field contribute with their understanding and ideas to the various types of problems that come to our consulting rooms nowadays.

    Patricia Alkolombre, Argentinean Psychoanalytic Association, COWAP Overall-Chair

    This book is leading the way for psychoanalysis in contemporary times, moving psychoanalysts and psychotherapists into today's world. The editors have collected contributions from diverse regions bringing thoughtful and refreshing considerations on infertility, surrogacy and donors, the passion for a child, along with pregnancy and pregnancy losses. Exploration of origin and birth fantasies, surrogacy clinic consultation, along with regional cultural mythology, offer the reader a textured informative immersion on psychoanalytic thinking in the current times of reproduction technologies.

    Paula Ellman, Ph.D., Contemporary Freudian Society, Former COWAP Overall-Chair

    This book is a stroke of luck in several respects: the clinically and theoretically highly qualified, often emotionally moving contributions by all the authors from different countries around the world not only enable a deeper understanding of the feelings associated with the desire to have children, pregnancy, infertility and assisted reproduction, as well as the associated help for all those affected. Instead of focusing on deficits, the authors place the psychological development of parenthood at the center of their work. This includes working with the possibilities of assisted reproduction, and not against them - remaining at the same time open to the complexity of unconscious connections and conflicts. This shows how lively psychoanalysis can be in the 21st century.

    Heribert Blass, Dr. med., German Psychoanalytic Association, IPA President-elect