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Schubert, J. (2000). Give sorrow words: Mourning at termination of psychoanalysis. Scand. Psychoanal. Rev., 23(1):105-117.

(2000). Scandinavian Psychoanalytic Review, 23(1):105-117

Give sorrow words: Mourning at termination of psychoanalysis

Johan Schubert, M.D.

Psychoanalysis may be described as a work of mourning. This is highlighted during the terminal period when the analysand is anticipating the reality of parting from the analyst. The situation promotes an intensification of transference reactions, consisting of separation anxiety and depressive affects, which originate from losses of different developmental origin. With the help of clinical material, including the interpretation of a dream, the patient's various defensive measures to avoid the full impact of separation is illuminated. The rôle and activity of the analyst at termination is also focussed upon. An important aim of the presentation is to show the crucial task for the analyst to help the patient experience the entire meaning of termination without the interference of countertransference enactments.

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