chapter  12
22 Pages

Psychoanalysis: The Verbal Exchange

To find a patient we must look for him or her in ourselves (though not letting ourselves get in the way), to see experiences brought alive, and then transferred into that potential space mutually created together. The analyst is a potential vessel in which the patient can live experiences anew, and with whom to create new experiences. A necessary part of effective attachment in the analytic process is the intersubjective experience of having made an impact on the analyst, of reciprocal knowing that affective communication is effective, in that it makes a difference, that the

analyst has been affected, touched, changed, by the emotional expression of the patient (Aron, 1995). For example, patients who have been traumatized must know that the analyst can be a container of emotional pain and feeling without being damaged or destroyed by it. This containment, articulation, and regulation of affect by both analyst and patient can restore internal regulation of feeling and reestablish the protective shield of safety traumatically shattered.