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Rosenbaum, M. (1965). Dreams in which the Analyst Appears Undisguised—a Clinical and Statistical Study. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 46:429-437.

(1965). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 46:429-437

Dreams in which the Analyst Appears Undisguised—a Clinical and Statistical Study

Milton Rosenbaum

My interest in this subject developed in the course of an analysis with a patient during a period in which there was an unusually strong transference as well as unusually strong conscious feelings of a positive nature on my part. When struggling with feelings about the patient, I became aware of the fact that I appeared undisguised in many of her dreams, and this was rather frequent as she was a prolific dreamer. Most important, however, was my feeling that the frequency of my appearance in her dream was unusual since I had not particularly noticed this phenomenon in other patients, and indeed it was my impression that such dreams in general were rather rare. Besides, there was a vague feeling of discomfort that these dreams indicated that there was something wrong in my analytic work with the patient. I was aware, of course, of my own strong feelings, which gave rise to some guilt feelings, and even wondered if I should continue with the patient.

In addition, I remembered Gitelson's (1952) remarks on this subject, namely, that the early occurrence of the phenomenon indicated a poor prognosis and the later occurrence indicated a countertransference problem. I asked several colleagues if they had had similar experiences and the general comments were that it was an infrequent phenomenon. My curiosity led me to the literature, which was sparse, and after hearing a paper on the topic by Irving Harris at the American Psychoanalytic meeting, I decided to undertake this study.

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