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Robertiello, R.C. (1972). Telephone Sessions. Psychoanal. Rev., 59(4):633-634.

(1972). Psychoanalytic Review, 59(4):633-634


Telephone Sessions

Richard C. Robertiello, M.D.

During the past few months I have had the experience of conducting analytic sessions over the telephone with two different patients. It has been a unique learning experience for me and one I wanted to share with my colleagues.

In the first instance the patient was a 26-year-old man who had been in analysis with me for about two years after an unsuccessful analytic experience of a year with another therapist. He had come in because of a writer's block and low self-esteem. He was in individual as well as group therapy. His treatment had progressed remarkably well. His writer's block had gone and his self-esteem had risen considerably. He had not cleared up his problems to an optimal degree but was well on his way. At this point in his analysis he received a very attractive offer involving writing that necessitated his leaving town for a period of about four months. He asked if he could phone me once a week for a regular analytic session while he was away. I said I would be glad to try it, and he did so. To my pleasant surprise and to his, his analysis continued in almost exactly the same way it had when he was coming into my office. A good deal of this particular patient's analysis was conducted through the interpretation of his dreams. His progress continued at the same rapid pace, and he has recently returned to town and to his office visits.

The other patient's story is more complex and brings up some more interesting theoretical and technical considerations.

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