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Abrams, S. Solnit, A.J. (1998). Coordinating Developmental and Psychoanalytic Processes: Conceptualizing Technique. J. Amer. Psychoanal. Assn., 46(1):85-103.

(1998). Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, 46(1):85-103

Coordinating Developmental and Psychoanalytic Processes: Conceptualizing Technique

Samuel Abrams and Albert J. Solnit

Throughout childhood and adolescence, psychological growth proceeds in a sequence of progressive hierarchical organizations. Consequently, children are continuously consolidating existing positions or are in transition from one to another. When analytic treatment is proposed, analysts often find themselves in the position of being required to technically coordinate the requirements of the analytic process with those of the ongoing developmental process. While it is the patient who will ultimately bring the needs of both processes together, the approach the analyst assumes to recognizing and addressing these needs can have a facilitating influence on the treatment. Play, for example, is a window on old conflicts and impaired object relationships from the past, but it is also a way in which children consolidate existing organizational hierarchies. Similarly, the analytic interaction provides a pathway to the past, but it is also used by children to provide the building blocks for newly emerging structures. To facilitate further clinical research, a conceptual outline of the relationship between the two processes is provided.

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