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Haapatalo, E. (2019). On the development of a benign superego- thoughts arising from psychoanalytical work with children and grownups. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 42(1-2):27-35.

(2019). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 42(1-2):27-35

On the development of a benign superego- thoughts arising from psychoanalytical work with children and grownups

Elisabeth Haapatalo

The human psyche unfolds through the internalization of the presence of the object; little by little the child makes the functions and characteristics of the object her own. Part of the internalization of the primary objects result in the superego formation. When the internalized object is reliably present, protecting and need fulfilling the superego will be formed into a benign inner structure, which has self-observing, self-regulatory and ideal forming functions. A good internal object lays the basis for a well- functioning and protective superego, whereas an object experienced as too distant and not there when needed results in internalizations which build a harsh and persecuting superego. The focus in this article is on the development of a benign superego.

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