Archive | Sigmund Freud


Why is psychoanalysis the study of transference and resistance?

Freud said the study of psychoanalysis is the study of transference and resistance. What is resistance? You come into therapy, you’re told to say everything, put all your thoughts and feelings into words, into the space. It’s impossible, you get close but it’s impossible. Resistance is the impediment to doing so. There’s internal and external […]

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What is the Dual Drive Theory in Psychoanalysis?

In modern psychoanalysis, aggression is important. Managing aggression is healthy and maturational. In fact, there is something called the dual drive theory, one of the early theories of psychoanalysis. Freud first proposed that there was only libido, love, pulling things close and that encompassed all our actions and feelings. It took World War II for […]

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What Is Anaclitic Countertransference?

Another type of transference, and this also comes from Dr. Spotnitz, is called anaclitic countertransference. Countertransference are the feelings that the therapist has for the patient. I know we’ve talked about it in the past, but there are two types of countertransference: subjective and objective. Subjective are things from my past as a therapist that […]

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Freud's Concept of the Unconscious Mind

What Is Freud’s Concept of the Unconscious Mind?

 I want to talk, in some detail, about the unconscious mind. In Freud’s topographical model of the mind, there were three levels. There’s the conscious, the preconscious, and the unconscious. Everybody says subconscious today, but that was not a term Freud used. The conscious is what we’re discussing right now. Quite easy. The preconscious […]

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Differences in Modern & Freudian Psychoanalysis

Psychoanalysis starts with Freud. It is the study of unconscious motivation that affects our behavior. Freud was a believer that interpretation was curative, that telling people why they act a certain way was curative. Modern Psychoanalysts don’t really believe that. Knowledge is not itself curative. If I told you why you were acting certain ways […]

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What is “Transference” in Psychoanalysis?

Freud said that if you study transference and resistance, that is psychoanalysis. I know I have talked about countertransference in that past, but I neglected to talk about transference. Transference comes down to the first person you meet, your mother. We call that the object. The primary object is your mother. When you are born, […]

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Where do dreams come from?

I have patients come in and say they don’t believe in the unconscious. I ask, “Well, where do dreams come from?” There is a silence when I ask that question. Psychoanalysis originated with Freud interpreting his own dreams. People are fascinated with dream interpretation. I have patients come in, they tell me a dream and […]

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