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Stanger, M. (1977). Meetings of the Psychoanalytic Association of New York. Psychoanal Q., 46:555-556.

(1977). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 46:555-556

Meetings of the Psychoanalytic Association of New York

Melving Stanger

DISCUSSION: Dr. Maurice Friend spoke of the special technical problems involved in analyzing adolescents because of their distrust of parental figures, their ease of regression, the special conflicts concerning their sexual wishes, and the defense of aesthetic preoccupations. One consequence is the likelihood that we are less often able to accomplish an affectively complete reconstruction and more often able only to reassemble available derivatives. He cited three groups of patients who are likely in adult analysis to restructure their adolescent development most definitively: (1) the ones who, in adolescence (or earlier), suffer parent or sibling loss, or who suffer a severe illness or a significant separation; (2) severely depressed, borderline, narcissistic patients with homosexual conflicts, like Dr. Mayer's patient; and (3) a few hysterical patients, like Dr. Kaplan's, who make continuous active attempts to master familial superego configurations. Dr. Friend was interested in learning how insight from the adolescent material in this second case aided the patient in advancing to later object relations and other changes.

Dr. Peter Neubauer, in responding to Dr. Glenn's original questions, suggested that there were many interrelationships between earlier pathology and adolescent ego ideal formation, as well as with other dimensions of the evolution of the adolescent personality. What had to be analyzed, therefore, depended upon the degree to which the adolescent developments were invaded, distorted, and limited, or upon whether there existed an alternative situation in which there was simply a continuation or replication of the earlier pathology in the later phase.

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