Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Transactional Analysis and Gestalt Therapy

As I'm at work trying to understand the relationship of the drive and the imagos with my patients, and formalize their repetitions and defenses, I find that using transactional analysis is helpful to explain the phenomenal element.

There's always a game in the stories patients tell...

One will complain about her cheating, lying, threatening,... boyfriend but when she doesn't take an opportunity to leave we see that she has her own reasons for staying with him. She feels like she deserves to be homeless for what she's done to others and she has anxiety on her own and feels to overwhelmed to face the world alone.

One will be a "parent" and mercilessly criticize the partner and put his or her own castration anxiety into them or have them walking on eggshells and feeling like a "child". Then, as the past comes up, they can start to own that this was how they felt in the past themselves with their parents.

I remember reading a gestalt technique about getting the person to do an impression of someone whom they are obviously projecting on. Often having the patient do this will have them acknowledge themselves that they "used to feel like this" or that they're "kinda like this too".

One patient describes her volar castration complex through explaining her sister's "attitude".

"I am...[sister's name]"
"Everyone else is wrong"
"I don't pick and choose my battles [but argue with people every time]"
"I am disgusted with everyone who isn't me"
"no one else is going to be good enough for me"


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