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Stern, H.R. (2004). Hard Boiled EGGS and Other Psychiatric Tales: The Rebirth of the Psychotherapy of Severe Mental Illness. By Albert M. Honig. Doylestown, PA: North Street Publishers, 2001, 173 pp.. Psychoanal. Rev., 91(3):460-463.

(2004). Psychoanalytic Review, 91(3):460-463

Hard Boiled EGGS and Other Psychiatric Tales: The Rebirth of the Psychotherapy of Severe Mental Illness. By Albert M. Honig. Doylestown, PA: North Street Publishers, 2001, 173 pp.

Review by:
Harold R. Stern, Ph.D.

Honig's Book devotes each of his four chapters to a description of the treatment of a severely troubled and close-to-death mental patient. The book is also a personal story of the experience of a very caring and concerned therapist. What distinguishes this story are the author's self-revealing thoughts and feelings about each patient. In each tale of treatment we witness an intimate insight into some of Dr. Honig's countertransference feelings. More important, we are privy to the inner processes of what could be described as a differently attuned Doctor Honig with each patient. We too uniquely react to each of the patients we treat. As Racker (1968) proposes, the countertransference processes induced in the analyst, that is, the complementary and concordant responses to the inner workings of the patient, and his or her transference objects also reverberate in the therapist's personality and behavior as well.

Reading Freud's description of his cases, we frequently obtain a sense of constancy in his theory and treatment of patients and in the workings of his mind.

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