How Do You Keep Current with Modern Psychoanalysis?

Look at my shelves. Those are all books on psychoanalysis. There’s so much to learn in terms of various concepts and ideas, but it’s fascinating and I’m always learning. I’m always reading. I’m always going to seminars. We analysts get together and talk. The one problem with the profession, it’s a little bit lonely. It’s the only profession you can’t go to a cocktail party and really have a major conversation. People ask what I do, I say, “Well, I’m a psychoanalyst,” and either they walk away or they say, “Don’t analyze me,” or they ask, “Why do I do this?”

When I was in architecture, “Well, I did this building, I did that building, I do this, I do that.” Everybody is fascinated by architects. We all drive Jaguars and have box seats at The Met…At least in the movies.

The other thing that’s interesting to me is, and the movies come into this too, is when you see movies with therapists and psychiatrists and psychoanalysts, it seems to be an epiphany moment that solves the case. I think of Ordinary People. I don’t know if you remember that movie. Judd Hirsch is the therapist and Timothy Hutton goes running over in the middle of the night and had this epiphany moment where they get to the bottom of the case. Doesn’t happen. I’d love to wave my magic wand. Everybody wants me to wave my magic wand. What happens is suddenly the patient will look left, and look right, and say, “I’m feeling … wait a minute, I’ve been feeling better for months. I’m just waking up and realizing things are getting better. I’m maturing. Things that were bothering me, aren’t bothering me so much.” That’s what really happens. ~ Rafael Sharón, NCPsyA, SCPsyA, Psychoanalyst in Princeton NJ

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