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(1956). International Journal of Psychoanalysis. XXXV, 1954: Rehearsal and Collusion. Julius L. Rowley. Pp. 421-427.. Psychoanal Q., 25:281.
Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing: International Journal of Psychoanalysis. XXXV, 1954: Rehearsal and Collusion. Julius L. Rowley. Pp. 421-427.

(1956). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 25:281

International Journal of Psychoanalysis. XXXV, 1954: Rehearsal and Collusion. Julius L. Rowley. Pp. 421-427.

A thirty-four-year-old woman, in analysis for feelings of unreality, blushing when with strangers, and other symptoms, employed denial, projection, and acting out as principal means of defense. Behavior at the time of week-end and holiday interruptions of the analysis provided important information. Before and after holidays she often skipped appointments. One gain from this behavior was that she, not another (the analyst) determined the time and degree of separation. To be alone at such times was equated with exposure to dangerous drives, erotic and destructive. Just before one such holiday the analyst suddenly realized that, contrary to his usual plan, he had neglected to discuss the patient's problems in preparation for the interruption, and that this failure could be looked on as a collusion with the patient to deny that a holiday was going to occur. Discussion of this interplay, this collusion, clarified and resolved a difficult phase in treatment.

Rehearsal was an element in the behavior of the patient: she was testing, by making a relatively unimportant break, her secret plan to effect a much longer break during the coming summer. She also used her blushing, a symbol of her destructiveness, to rehearse the effect of her destructiveness on the analyst, instead of employing the full force of her total potential destructiveness. The great advantage of testing out (rehearsal) is that no unalterable commitment is made. The author discusses the question of when collusion (to intervene or not to intervene) is indicated, to facilitate such 'rehearsals'.

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Article Citation

(1956). International Journal of Psychoanalysis. XXXV, 1954. Psychoanal. Q., 25:281

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