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Grossmark, R. (2019). The Anguish of Fatherhood. Psychoanal. Perspect., 16(3):316-325.

(2019). Psychoanalytic Perspectives, 16(3):316-325

The Anguish of Fatherhood

Robert Grossmark, PhD, ABPP

This paper engages with the experience of being both a symbolic and actual father and theorizes the tension between between being “The Father” and “A Father” and describes the resulting dilemmas and the anguish of fatherhood. The story of Oedipus is transposed to focus on Laius, Oedipus’s father and the centrality of not knowing as emblematic of the anguish of fatherhood. A clinical vignette illustrates the manifestation of these struggles within both patient and analyst as the unknowing anguish of fatherhood is transformed into generative connection and effective parenting.

[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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