Would-Be Wife Killer
A Clinical Study of Primitive Mental Functions, Actualised Unconscious Fantasies, Satellite States, and Developmental Steps
The author believes that studying a therapeutic process closely from its beginning to its termination is one of the best ways to observe, learn, and teach psychoanalytic concepts. This book is unusual since it describes a man's drastic internal psychological changes over forty years. He was thirty-nine years old when he wanted to cut off his wife's head with an axe and he was hospitalized; previous to this incident he had delusions and hallucinations. He died at age eighty-two as a beloved community leader. The author provides clinical illustrations of primitive transference and counter transference manifestations. He defines "satellite states" in which an individual finds a balance between experiencing individuation and remaining dependent on the Other and "crucial juncture" experiences that are necessary to learn how to integrate self and object images and move up the developmental steps. Various concepts such as the replacement child, actualized unconscious phantasy, emotional flooding, and linking interpretation and therapeutic play are explored.
Table of Contents
A beginning therapist meets a would-be wife murderer -- A man with three penises and two vaginas -- My first three months with Attis -- A childhood injury to a body part that stands for a penis and actualised unconscious fantasy -- Thoughts on personality organisations -- The psychotic core -- Beginning outpatient therapy -- Linking interpretations, a flesh-coloured car, and emotional flooding -- Turkey dinners and identification with a therapeutic libidinal object -- Internalisation–externalisation cycles and the alteration of the psychotic core -- Workable transference -- Satellite state and therapeutic play -- Crucial juncture experiences -- Physical illnesses and psychic freedom -- Sunset