chapter  6
15 Pages

Catching my balance in the counter-transference

It is easy to get caught up in the counter-transference, especially with patients presiding more on the borderline, narcissistic, and paranoid-schizoid (Klein 1946) spectrum but also with those within the more primitive depressive (Klein 1935, 1940) realm. The analyst can easily slip into various modes of enactment. These patterns of acting out are typically evoked by the intrapsychic and interpersonal aspects of the patient’s intense reliance on splitting and projective identifi cation mechanisms. While acting out the countertransference is a universal and unavoidable pitfall to some degree, it is vital for the analyst to fi nd a way to regain his or her analytic balance and reestablish analytic contact (Waska 2007). This is a central therapeutic goal of Modern Kleinian Therapy. Once reconnected in this manner, the analyst can continue to move forward in helping the patient to resolve his or her core confl icts regarding love, hate, and knowledge (Waska 2010b). And, the analyst can then continue interpreting the ways the patient avoids the important and necessary integration of these confl icts (Waska 2006) by projecting unwanted aspects of self and object, avoiding separation, or denying differences between self and other.