Kristina E. Schellinski uncovers the hidden trauma of the replacement child – born into an atmosphere of grief to substitute for a lost sibling or other person – and helps adult replacement children discover the uniqueness of their self.

Schellinski combines Jungian theory with research from over 20 years of clinical practice to demonstrate how adult replacement children who suffer from physical and psychological distress can rediscover the essence of their being in the transformative process of individuation. Theoretical yet practical, the book discusses core concepts of analytical psychology, psychoanalysis and attachment theory, and detailed case studies address grief, guilt, identity formation, relational challenges and shadow aspects. Schellinski explores how Jung’s birth after three dead children impacted his search for self and his theory and discloses her own personal experience. On treatment and prevention, she argues that by recognising elements of the condition, clinicians can facilitate acceptance, compassion and healing, and help reduce transgenerational transmission.

This book is an indispensable tool for clinicians, analytical psychologists, psychodynamic psychotherapists and those in other medical professions, and will be of great interest to academics and readers interested in Jungian studies and existential questions. It offers adult replacement children and their families hope for a psychological rebirth.

chapter Chapter 1|18 pages


chapter Chapter 2|13 pages

Discovery of the replacement child condition

chapter Chapter 3|19 pages

Famous replacement children in psychoanalysis

chapter Chapter 4|18 pages

In the beginning

Early bonding, attachment and relation to self

chapter Chapter 5|30 pages


A question of life or death?

chapter Chapter 6|21 pages

Working through grief

chapter Chapter 7|15 pages

Different strands of guilt in the replacement child

chapter Chapter 8|15 pages

Confronting difficult aspects of shadow

chapter Chapter 9|21 pages

From missing other towards union with self

chapter Chapter 10|23 pages

Treatment, prevention and transgenerational transmission

chapter Chapter 11|18 pages

Concluding reflections on transformation