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Seidel, R.G. (2006). Anna, Leaving Home—An Adolescent Girl's Journey. Psychoanal. St. Child, 61:101-120.

(2006). Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 61:101-120

The Child Analyst at Work

Anna, Leaving Home—An Adolescent Girl's Journey Related Papers

Rachel G. Seidel, M.D.

The author presents an in-depth exploration of psychoanalytic process from her work with Anna, a young woman in treatment from age 15 through her 18th birthday, when she left for college. Anna came to treatment with attachment problems and bulimic symptoms embedded in her character structure, the deformation of which had impaired relationships and disrupted developmental processes. A noteworthy aspect of Anna's analysis is a treatment resistance that repeated early issues of abandonment and loss, and that allowed the analyst to experience the centrality of Anna's sadomasochistic relatedness. As this material is analyzed, an erotized transference emerges in which Anna both longs for and fears a special intimacy with her analyst. Talented at working and playing in the transference, Anna is able to use the transference to remember her early life, to learn to experience and tolerate a range of affects, and to explore old and new kinds of attachments. Psychoanalysis helps to put developmental processes back

on track and results in significant intrapsychic and interpersonal change, allowing Anna to separate and to leave home.

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