The Value of Hate in the Countertransference
The author looks at the experience of hate in the countertransference and develops the idea that hate can be of particular value to the treatment process. He begins with an exploration of the therapist’s needs and discusses how unmet self-regulatory needs sometimes lead to feelings of frustration and rage toward the patient. The author explores these ideas as they are connected to Winnicott’s (1949, 1971) work on aggression and Jessica Benjamin’s (1992) work on recognition and destruction. The author espouses a difference between rage and hate, where rage is seen as indicative of unmet needs, and hate is seen as a force that can emancipate the therapist from the encumbrance of unmet needs. Case examples are provided to show the utility of this perspective.