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Fromm-Reichmann, F. (1955). Clinical Significance of Intuitive Processes of the Psychoanalyst. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 3:82-88.

(1955). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 3:82-88

Clinical Significance of Intuitive Processes of the Psychoanalyst

Frieda Fromm-Reichmann, M.D.

Three of the preceding presentations offered are concerned with the clinical significance of the analyst's interrelatedness with schizophrenics and, implicitly or explicitly, with its influence on the promotion or inhibition of his intuitive processes. I will restrict myself, therefore, to the discussion of only one clinical example from my own experience, and use this is a starting point for a short review of our initial findings about the analyst's intuition as they transpire from the papers presented.

Many years ago, I described this experience. I had worked with a patient for a long period of time. Despite her assaultiveness a good mutual working relationship had been established. One day, while she was in a wet pack, I asked her whether she would be willing to give a legally needed signature. Her prompt answer was, "if you unpack me." Turning away from the patient I walked toward the door of her room to go and ask the nurses to do so. On the verge of leaving the room I looked back at the patient without realizing why. I believed at the time, that as I looked back at her I caught the clue from the expression of disappointment and frustration, if not despair, on the patient's face, that "if you unpack me" meant me, and not the nurses. I came back and opened the pack singlehandedly, and she gave me her signature. Later on he patient related this experience as having been the first step toward her recovery.


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