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Wylie, H.W., Jr. Wylie, M.L. (1987). The Older Analysand: Countertransference Issues in Psychoanalysis. Int. J. Psycho-Anal., 68:343-352.

(1987). International Journal of Psycho-Analysis, 68:343-352

The Older Analysand: Countertransference Issues in Psychoanalysis

Harold W. Wylie, Jr. and Mavis L. Wylie


The apparent reluctance among analysts to begin an analysis with a patient beyond his or her fifth decade, a view first articulated by Freud, is examined as an instance of countertransference resistance. Although there is no greater consensus among analysts than the continuing necessity of self-analysis irrespective of age, it is an attitude which does not appear to be so readily extended to the older prospective analysand. This report examines countertransference issues within the context of a seven year classical analysis of an older female who began an analysis at the end of her sixth decade. The case illustrates the timelessness of psychological conflicts at all levels and the particular character of the analyst's countertransferences that surfaced listening to the material of this older analysand.

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