In mature psychoanalytic theory, the transference becomes paramount. Transference, the phenomenon by which the analysand comes to place the analyst in familiar roles, father and mother being the primordial examples, sounds like a sort of a stereotypically Freudian weirdness, but it also has a typically Freudian therapeutic job to do: the patient under its sway, the idea goes, will act out her neurosis in the context of the transference rather than in her life. The analysis itself becomes the no-consequences staging-ground for the analysand’s illness—which is precisely how the illness can be drawn out and unraveled. The challenge, of course, is that the analysand has to be able to tell her analyst when she’s disgusted, or angry, or turnt, and that’s no easy task.1
So I probably should’ve said something yesterday when, mid-sentence, I noticed that my old qu.ee/r business card was on the top of the little pile my analyst keeps in a bowl under his iMac and froze. I probably should’ve had the courage and commitment to investigate why I would see that as a sign of approval, like does he think I’m not the pathetic mess I am, and why I would be so desperate for signs like that, like why do I give a shit what my feelings-whore thinks—money’s on the Standard Edition, baby, see you Thursday. Instead I just froze.
Especially if you’re in my shoes, and your insurance explicitly refuses to pay for anything but face-to-face treatment.↩
March 5, 2014