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Freud, S. (1917). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, November 20, 1917. The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sandor Ferenczi Volume 2, 1914-1919, 249-250.

Freud, S. (1917). Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, November 20, 1917. The Correspondence of Sigmund Freud and Sandor Ferenczi Volume 2, 1914-1919 , 249-250

Letter from Sigmund Freud to Sándor Ferenczi, November 20, 1917 Book Information Previous Up Next

Sigmund Freud

Vienna, November 20, 1917
IX., Berggasse 19

Dear friend,

Your letter has strengthened all my convictions, both with respect to the fact that there is no other way out for you but to marry Frau G., and that you will not cease with the production of “avoidances”. until you are confronted with a fait accompli. If only the miserable six months were already over! If there is still something to be provided, then you should have a beautiful wedding present.

You emphasize that the signs of age in Frau G. have scared you away. They are undeniable, but are seen by you from a false perspective. Perhaps you think, since I myself have grown old and have no access to youth, that I am also wishing an old woman on you. No, I wouldn't have asked that of you, but it is not a matter of choosing a wife. She has already been that for fifteen years, became that when she was young and beautiful, has aged with you, and that should not be a motive for casting out one's wife after so many long years. It is now only a matter of transforming an uncomfortable marriage into a contented living together. Incidentally—she is today, with all the deficiencies of her—merely somatic—age, still worth incomparably more than most of the squeaky-clean and glossy women who get married. And finally—you know that yourself. What otherwise eludes you serves as a just punishment for you and, as such, will again satisfy an inner need.

It is nice that you have reawakened your scientific fantasy. The times also demand achievement from each of us; they will become hard. I alone perhaps have a right to flirt with peace and quiet. I have worked hard, am worn out, and am beginning to find the world repulsively disgusting. The superstition that has limited my life to around February 1918 seems downright friendly to me. Sometimes I have to struggle for a long time until I regain my superiority.

In a kind of urge to set my house in order I have sent two of the essays on metapsychology (Mourning and Melancholia, μΨ Supplement to the Theory of Dreams)1 to Sachs for the last issue of the Zeitschrift. (The rest may be kept quiet.) You see, as the war continues, I fear the discontinuation of our journals, about which nothing can be done.

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