David Wayne, PhD
February 11, 2023

In 1975 Margaret Mahler published The Psychological Birth of the Human Infant: Symbiosis and Individuation.  Through this lense, physical birth and psychological birth, while intertwined, are seen as distinct events.

A case will be presented in which over time, it became evident, this physically birthed human had not yet become psychologically born.  The “discovery journey” was excruciatingly experiential for both patient and analyst; emptiness, manically treading water, terrified someone will sense the emptiness inside or be discovered as alien.  One has a feeling of watching but not participating, waiting for life to begin. Paranoia is a constant companion, the black of space the only vista.  One has to work exceedingly to have any hope of belonging, even if only for a moment. There is no feeling of connection to others without blinding terror and paranoia. No matter how great the effort, it all ends in futility.

“It is a pleasure to be hidden, but a disaster to not be found.”

DW Winnicott

This is the chronical of a journey taken by patient and therapist into the black abyss of insanity, formlessness, and desperation.  This is the story of how the analyst “found” his patient, and how she became psychologically born.

  •  February 11, 2023
     10:00 am - 1:15 pm
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