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Pediconi, M.G. (2019). Beyond Termination: Freud and Lacan on Healing: Principles and Practice. DIVISION/Rev., 19:35-37.

(2019). DIVISION/Review, 19:35-37

Beyond Termination: Freud and Lacan on Healing: Principles and Practice

Maria Gabriella Pediconi

Our healings are healings by love

-Sigmund Freud

Turning Points

Patient's turning point. When a patient decides to start analytic treatment, she is at a delicate moment of her life. It is a turning point: not the first, but a decisive one. When a patient nears the end of treatment, she finds a new turning point. This should be an end that brings new beginnings.

In this case, we recognize the healing process as the goal of the analysis. It is the point of arrival of two distinct works: on the one hand, the working through of the patient; on the other hand, the floating attention of the analyst. Such healing is a process based on two asymmetric positions and elaborations. Contrary to medical treatment, healing in the psychoanalytic treatment is never the effect of a direct intervention of the practitioner on the patient; it is never a one-directional procedure.

Freud's turning point. Freud describes his own turning point from medicine to psychoanalysis at the beginning of his career: “I took the opportunity of asking her, too, why she had gastric pains and where they came from … Her answer, which she gave rather grudgingly, was that she did not know. I requested her to remember it by tomorrow. She then said in a definitely grumbling tone that I was not to keep on asking her where this and that came from, but to let her tell me what she had to say. I fell in with this, and she went on without any preamble” (Freud, 1893/1955, pp. 62-63).

Friedman (1994) and Gabbard (1995) claim that Freud was brilliant in obeying his patients and in transforming this obedience into a real norm, the fundamental norm of psychoanalysis.

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