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Grinberg, L. (1966). The Relationship Between Obsessive Mechanisms and a State of Self Disturbance: Depersonalization. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 47:177-183.

(1966). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 47:177-183

The Relationship Between Obsessive Mechanisms and a State of Self Disturbance: Depersonalization

León Grinberg

SUMMARY

In this paper I discuss the nature and finality of some obsessive mechanisms, particularly that of obsessional control, and the influence they have on the state of the self and object relationships.

I propose the distinction between two levels in the functioning of this mechanism. One covers the most regressive aspects of them, those of the well-known 'omnipotent' control which are predominantly connected with psychotic states; the other covers the most developed aspects, which I have called the mechanisms of 'adaptational' control, to stress the fact that it functions with a better adaptation to reality and with a stronger tendency to cathect the external object. The failure, for different reasons, in the functioning of this second type of control leads to reactions of depersonalization due to the loss of control of the projected aspects of the self into the object with the ensuing alteration of the sense of reality, and regression to the 'omnipotent' control.

I present some clinical examples to illustrate these concepts.

I also connect this mechanism of obsessive control with normal processes such as ego disconnexion and ego restitution that take place during falling asleep and waking up phenomena.

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