The American Journal of Psychoanalysis

, Volume 66, Issue 2, pp 139–155 | Cite as


  • Yecheskiel CohenEmail author


The author’s conviction is that a successful treatment is based on feelings of love by the therapist/analyst toward his or her patients. One should differentiate between love that is based on biological erotic-sexual drives and emotional love without erotic biological drive. The treatment process, especially for severely disturbed personalities, should be regarded as a process of new birth and new kind of development. Thus what the patient needs most is a kind of parental “primary love” (according to Balint). This paper presents a full report of a session through which the basic love to the patient is illustrated as enabling the treatment.


love parental countertransference real feelings 



The author is very grateful to Etty Cohen, Noa Haas, Sara Moses, Raanan Kulka, Stanley Shneider, and Jonathan Slavin for their helpful comments. A special thanks goes to Michal Uzieli for her significant contribution to this paper.


  1. Balint M. (1952). Primary love and psychoanalytic technique. Hogarth Press, International Journal of Psychoanalysis Library, LondonGoogle Scholar
  2. Benjamin J. (1990). An outline of Intersubjectivity. The development of recognition. Psychoanalytic Psychology 7:3–46Google Scholar
  3. Benjamin J. (1995). Like subjects, love objects. Yale University Press, New Haven, CTGoogle Scholar
  4. Britton R.S. (2003). The erotic countertransference—then and now. Psychoanalysis in Europe 57:102–112Google Scholar
  5. Cohen Y. (1996) Fear of love. In: Rangel L., Moses-Hrushovski R. (eds) Psychoanalysis at the political border. International Universities Press, Madison, WIGoogle Scholar
  6. Cooper A.M. (1992) Psychic change: Development in the theory of psychoanalytic techniques—37th IPA Congress Overview. International Journal of Psycho-Analysis 73:245–250PubMedGoogle Scholar
  7. De Jonghe F., et al. (1991) Aspects of the analytic relationship. International Journal of Psycho-Analysis 72:693–707PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Doi T. (1993). Amea and transference love. In: Person E.S., Hagelin A., Fonagy P. (eds) On Freud’s “Observation on Transference Love”. Yale University Press, New Haven, CT, pp 165–171Google Scholar
  9. Ferenczi S. (1929). The unwelcome child and his death-instinct. In: Balint M. (eds) E. Mosbacher (Trans.), Final contributions to the problems and methods of psychoanalysis. Karnac Books, London, pp 102–107Google Scholar
  10. Ferenczi, S. [1933] (1994). Confusion of tongues between adults and the child. In M. Balint (Ed.), E. Mosbacher (Trans.), Final contributions to the problems and methods of psychoanalysis (pp. 156–167). London: Karnac BooksGoogle Scholar
  11. Friedman J.A. (1995). Ferenczi’s clinical diary: On loving and hating. International Journal of Psycho-Analysis 76:957–975PubMedGoogle Scholar
  12. Gabbard G.O. (1994) Sexual excitement and countertransference love in the analyst. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association 42:1083–1106PubMedGoogle Scholar
  13. Greenson R.R., Wexler M. (1969). The non-transference relationship in the psychoanalytic situation. International Journal of Psycho-Analysis 50:27–39PubMedGoogle Scholar
  14. Kernberg O. (1995). Love relations—Normality and pathology. Yale University Press, New Haven, CTGoogle Scholar
  15. Kohut H. (1977). The restoration of the self. International Universities Press, New YorkGoogle Scholar
  16. Novick J., Novick K.K. (2000). Love in the therapeutic alliance. Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Assocation 48:189–218CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Oberndorf C.P., Greenacre P., Kubie L. (1948). Symposium on the evaluation of therapeutic results. International Journal of Psycho-Analysis 29:7–33Google Scholar
  18. Thompson C.M. (1988). Sandor Ferenczi, 1873–1933. Contemporary Psychoanalysis 24:182–195Google Scholar
  19. Winnicott, D. W. [1947] (1958a). Hate in the countertransference. In Through paediatrics to psycho-analysis (pp. 194–203). London: Hogarth PressGoogle Scholar
  20. Winnicott D.W. (1958b). The capacity to be alone. International Journal of Psycho-Analysis 39:416–420Google Scholar
  21. Winnicott D.W. (1971). The use of an object and relating through identification. In Playing and reality. Tavistock, LondonGoogle Scholar
  22. Winnicott D.W. (1988). Babies and their mothers. FAB, LondonGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, Inc. 2006

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.JerusalemIsrael

Personalised recommendations