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Barclay, D. (2020). Hope and Forgiveness: Reply to Davies and Hirsch. Psychoanal. Dial., 30(1):47-50.

(2020). Psychoanalytic Dialogues, 30(1):47-50

Hope and Forgiveness: Reply to Davies and Hirsch

Diane Barclay, LCSW

As I had hoped, each of the discussants on the idea of forgiveness in the consulting room approached it from their own very different theoretical and personal slant. Davies (this issue) offered the perspective of one who works such concepts from the framework of multiplicity. Hirsch’s (this issue) ideas on the work with such concepts is with an eye on using it only if it inhibits the achievement of a fuller life. Both left room for non-resolution and ambivalence, a concept with which I fully agree. In my reply to these insightful papers, I expand on my use of forgiveness, as well as other multivalent concepts. My effort to try and open up these avenues is always to help someone retain hope underneath the frequently threatening life review, and often personality reconstruction, that we undertake. I have included a response to Davies’ question of analyst self-maintenance in and around challenging therapeutic situations. And finally, I consider how we might usefully expand difficult discussions that straddle values, religious and cultural beliefs, and similar concepts that we ourselves may not believe in or share.

[This is a summary excerpt from the full text of the journal article. The full text of the document is available to journal subscribers on the publisher's website here.]

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