chapter  13
The darkness of night
ByJohn Madonna
Pages 15

Extraneous occurrences that impact the life of the analyst can complicate and obstruct her capacity to be emotionally present. Principal among these is the analyst’s own illness, accident and injury; the decline through illness or accident of a loved one, or loss of that person through maturation, alienation, divorce or death; and that inevitable nemesis, the aging process. When these things happen, in addition to the physical pain and discomfort that can be preoccupying, there is the worry and psychological distress related to the loss of function, the prospects of recovery or not, the existential issue of mortality, grief, and the loss of meaning. Focus on the self can be so absorbing that even if the analyst is able to work, his perception, judgment and usually sufficient capacity are apt to be impaired.