chapter  15
Re-evaluation of unconscious contracts and therapeutic opportunities
ByJoan Raphael-Leff
Pages 14

In strange ways, people select their potential mate with an intricate 'sixth sense' that makes subtle intuitive assessments, unconsciously picking up unintended cues while unknowingly sending out provocative signals. In the course of the couple's preliminary 'scanning' of each other, 'falling in love' means unconsciously recognizing interlocking communications from a concealed inner world. In their relationship, many partners may retain an early childhood wish to be unconditionally loved and a secret yearning to recapture an illusion of fusion through the intimacy of sexual union or emotional merger. A type of unconscious contract is focused not on the issue of intimacy as above, but on a second critical dimension of relationships, power and control. The manner in which parents deal with a child's rivalry is determined by the degree of resolution of their own internal conflicts about inclusion/exclusion. Therapeutic Opportunities are Self-help groups, more realistic appraisal of self and partner, improved communication and feedback.