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Symington, N. (2004). Responses to Dr Koblenzer and to Drs Ahumada and Killingmo. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 85(4):1005.

(2004). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 85(4):1005

Responses to Dr Koblenzer and to Drs Ahumada and Killingmo Related Papers

Neville Symington

Dear Sirs,

The degree to which separation is traumatic depends upon the nature of the attachment. It is highly traumatic if the attachment is of a leech-like nature but very much less so if the attachment is effected through an inner creative act. In the analysis of Lawrence (Symington et al., 2004) the focus was persistently upon the leech-like nature of his attachment. There is definite evidence that there was a change from leech-like attachment to a creative bond and something of that change is manifest in Lawrence's remarks about the significance of contact—a realisation which does not occur when someone is in leech-like mode. I therefore do not think that the separation between the two sessions and also the rescheduling of the session is as emotionally significant as Dr Koblenzer suggests.

I would like to hear from Dr Ahumada why he thinks the good object is found to be so intolerable.

I think Dr Killingmo is absolutely right to point out that the burden of responsibilities upon Lawrence is too much for him—i.e. that there is a 5-year-old boy shouldering the responsibilities of an adult. I am grateful to Dr Killingmo for highlighting this. I also think he is right that Lawrence was not ready to finish.

Yours sincerely,


Symington N, Ahumada JL, Killingmo B (2004). Two sessions with Lawrence [with commentaries]. Int. J. Psycho-Anal. 85: 253-68.

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