288 Chapters
Medium 9781855756687

V The Weaning Process

Meltzer, Donald Harris Meltzer Trust ePub

As mentioned in the previous chapter, when the feeding relation to the breast at infantile levels begins to be acknowledged in the experience of the transference, termination immediately looms on the horizon and the fear of premature ending plays a role in all the subsequent work. This fear interacts at infantile levels with the depressive concern for “mother’s babies” and dominates the struggle toward integration as a life-long task. Its counterpart at the most adult level arises as an aesthetic and intellectual appreciation of the analytic process even in young children, driving the patient to “give the next fellow his turn” and to spare the analyst unnecessary work—the “time of his life”.

This latter point, being the main focus of the therapeutic alliance in approaching cooperatively the decision for termination, may occupy us first so that we can return to the infantile problems in a more organised way. By the time that this phase has been reached in analysis, even with young children, the cooperation and interest in the analytic work is astonishing, not only embracing control of acting out and a continual collection of material for analysis from the events of daily life, but an enthusiasm for dream analysis which comes from the full acknowledgement of psychic reality and its primacy for their states of mind. The repeated experience of awakening from sleep in a mood which cannot be shaken off until the analytic session resolves it, brings forth both conviction and gratitude which sets in motion the urge to self-analysis out of useful sparing motives, in contrast to the envious or competitive motivation which was the driving force in such pseudo-self-analytic attempts during phases two and four in particular.

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Medium 9781855752405

6. “Song-and-dance” and its developments: the function of rhythm in the learning process of oral and written language

Meltzer, Donald Karnac Books ePub

Suzanne Maiello

Preliminary remarks on rhythm

Singing and dancing are both rooted in rhythmicity. In music, rhythm is the element that organizes and structures the melody and the body of its underlying harmonies. In dancing, the rhythm determines the moment when a movement begins or ends or changes direction, and when the dancers’ feet leave or meet the ground. We shall see how the rhythmic elements in song-and-dance have a holding and sustaining function, and at the same time introduce discontinuity and change.

“In the prehistory of the race”, Meltzer writes, “the first leaps of imagination … were enacted in song-and-dance” (Meltzer et al., 1986, p. 184). This may be equally true for the “prehistory” of every human individual—that is, prenatal life.

A dream that the dreamer, a woman, associated with possible intrauterine experiences, may illustrate this. She dances with a man:

We are in perfect harmony with the sound of music that comes from somewhere, our bodies moulded to each other. There is nothing sexual about our closeness, no tension or excitement, just a deep and total sense of well-being. Our legs and feet are in such perfect agreement that they sometimes step out of the beat of the music, without ever losing their harmonious correspondence. The most wonderful of all sensations is to feel our steps moving in syncopation with the rhythm of the music while effortlessly maintaining their movements in perfect accord. [Maiello, 1995, pp. 28-29]

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Medium 9781855750845

2. Note on a transient inhibition of chewing (1959)

Donald Meltzer Karnac Books ePub

This analysis of a borderline case in the threshold of the depressive position was written one year after the publication ofMelanie Klein’s “Envy and Gratitude” (1957) and is an application of the theory of envy and a study of splitting processes through projective identification With clinical material from one week of a young man’s analysis, the author shows how the reconstruction of good internal objects and a surge towards the integration of the ego is intimately linked to the danger of fragmentation of the ego and objects.

This brief clinical paper sets out to demonstrate a critical week in the third year of the analysis of a borderline schizoid case. The material represents the culmination of certain lines of work during the previous year aimed at demonstrating psychic reality to the patient but also stands as the beginning of a period of six months characterized by marked clinical improvement outside the analysis and the most dogged resistance to any further advance within the consulting-room.

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Medium 9781855756786

XIII. Thirteenth Week—Sessions 72-77 The Relation of Ambivalence to the Experience of Depressive Pain

Meltzer, Donald Harris Meltzer Trust ePub

It is rather a beautiful week, influenced on the outside by Mrs Klein meeting Richard’s mother and his anxiety about the kind of school she would recommend. Also the question of plans for the possible continuation of the analysis are in the air. His suspicions and anxieties about these issues more or less dominate the first two sessions. Richard’s father’s illness casts an influence which threads through the week and there is also the problem about staying with the Wilsons which he does not like. He finds Mr Wilson much more authoritarian than he is accustomed to; he is used to being treated as an only child, nor stinted of sweets. The Wilsons are a more disciplined family than his own. He finally begs Mrs Klein and his mother to make other arrangements for him, which they do. He is also jealous of John, who is with Mrs Klein in analysis and is older, about fifteen. He probably feels rather pushed aside when John will not take him for a walk with a friend, or will not climb a mountain with him. Then there is a big disturbance in the setting on Friday, when Mrs Klein brings the oranges which absolutely drives Richard wild with jealousy.

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Medium 9781782202929

21. Normal Counter-transference and Some of its Deviations (1956)

Money-Kyrle, Roger Harris Meltzer Trust ePub


Counter-transference is an old psycho-analytic concept which has recently been widened and enriched. We used to think of it mainly as a personal disturbance to be analysed away in ourselves. We now also think of it as having its causes, and effects, in the patient and, therefore, as an indication of something to be analysed in him [1].

I believe this more recently explored aspect of counter-transference can be used, in the way described, for example, by Paula Heimann [2], to achieve an important technical advance. But of course the discovery that counter-transference can be usefully employed does not imply that it has ceased ever to be a serious impediment. And as both aspects in fact exist, we may surmise that there may be a problem about their similarities and differences which still deserves investigation. Perhaps this problem may be put in the form of three related questions: What is ‘normal’ counter-transference? How and under what conditions is it disturbed? And how can disturbances be corrected and in the process perhaps used to further an analysis?

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