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Elhami Athar, M. (2021). Freud's Rule of Abstinence: Implications for Brief Therapy: A Case Report. IJP Open, 8:10.

(2021). IJP Open, 8:10

Freud's Rule of Abstinence: Implications for Brief Therapy: A Case Report

Mojtaba Elhami Athar

Abstinence was defined by Freud as the analyst's abstinence in gratifying patients' infantile and transferential needs. Being trained in psychoanalytic therapy, the writer also utilizes an abstinence stance. The writer noticed a controversy regarding abstinence among long-term therapists. To provide short-term therapy, the writer noticed that abstinence had disappeared from the literature. Both literature reviews are summarized. The writer wondered if abstinence has a place in brief therapy. His patient was a 23-year-old man with a history of being scolded and strictly controlled by his mother and without a history of relationships wherein someone reciprocated his love. A summary of the patient's therapy sessions is provided in this article. The therapist followed the Core Conflictual Relationship Theme for brief therapy introduced by Luborsky. The therapy revealed that rather than feeling the expected deprivation, this patient felt gratified by the abstinence. The implications of this finding for long-term and brief therapy are discussed. The writer suggests that careful and flexible use of abstinence, even in brief therapy, can be beneficial in exploring the patient's need and ability to tolerate a caring relationship.

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