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Simpson, D. (2014). Some Consequences of Being the Wrong Child: Effects of the Intergenerational Transmission of an Ideal-Ego. Brit. J. Psychother., 30(2):181-196.

(2014). British Journal of Psychotherapy, 30(2):181-196

Clinical Practice

Some Consequences of Being the Wrong Child: Effects of the Intergenerational Transmission of an Ideal-Ego

David Simpson

In this paper the author considers a not uncommon group of patients seen in analytic work. These are people who present themselves for treatment because they feel that there is something ‘wrong with themselves’, and it is this belief about themselves that is their problem. They are usually people who have not achieved their potential in life; who may be dissatisfied in their relationships and/or with their level of success in their work. They often suffer from depression, symptoms of anxiety or psychosomatic complaints. In this way their belief in their sense of ‘wrongness’ is self-confirming and to this extent they do have something wrong with them although the particular manifestations, of what is wrong, can vary considerably. However, it is what these people have in common, their fundamental belief in being ‘wrong’, which the author is going to address.

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