chapter  22
6 Pages

The Contact Phase

Contact is not just togetherness or joining. It can only happen between separate beings, always requiring independence and always risking capture in the union. At the moment of union, one's fullest sense of his per,son is swept along into a new creation. I am no longer me, but me and thee make we .... Contact is the lifeblood of growth, the means for changing oneself and one's experience of the world .... So, contact involves not only a sense of one's self, but also the sense of whatever impinges at the contact boundary, and even merges into it. ... Contact, however, inherently involves the risk of loss of identity or separateness. In this lies the adventure and the art of contact.l

Contact is the interaction between the person and his or her environment in such a way that the need for change is satisfied. Contact is the point of change. In the first section of this text, we discussed "Contact Boundary Regulation." If you do not remember it, it may be wise to reread it now. The point of contact is where what is known and what is unknown meet. It is where the thirst for water fmds water, where the need for human touch finds it, where the anger at losing a father meets some resolution of the anger.