I've had a few patients now who have had the same fantasy structure. They are alone in nature, there is attention to the light there, and there is oneness with it.
Then there is the idea that nature is being hurt by machines (1. oil equipment sucking the earth dry, 2. roads and machines and trash that piss nature off, and 3. nature feeling sad and betrayed).
In this pre-object earth without the representations of other humans there, I've been surprised that things appear (the machines, the roadways).
I guess that an autistic child's preverbal cathexis of things must occur.
But still, is the first form of the father really things? If so, is this a similar mechanism to a masculine woman who identifies with the father (even though she isn't necessarily lesbian), but instead the autistic child identifies with things?
The fantasy of being alone on the earth in unity, precedes the appearance of the machines, so it's clear that this is the mother imago. I'm not sure about proto and deutero yet.
This also raises the question about whether the thing must appear in Space or whether Space is at the next stage. Tustin's autistic shapes are ones without Space as it is normally conceived, but none of these patients are talking about autistic shapes or relations of sensation. So, maybe they are defused proto and lack the deutero connection to this...
Still, despite these many uncertainties, I'm now convinced that there is a stage before the auto-erotic. It may be the birth stage, but I don't see or feel any imagery to argue for this. If it's not, and it's a later stage, then the idea that there is yet an earlier birth stage and potentially an earlier stage in the womb is quite a surprise.
As a further note, I continue to see more people who are very isolated and have the notion that the people who died in their lives may have done so because they got close to them. So, Fairbairn's schizoid conflict and Klein's phantasy of the breast being sucked of its previous liquid have borne out in some cases. I think that because of psychic bisexuality, that the phantasy isn't the same for everyone at this stage. The oil rig sucking the earth, is different than the roads that trash it. Also, why some people who are very alone have the idea that their love hurts others, it doesn't come up for all. For one, the idea of their being an ice wall between her and others is central, and she doesn't have problems being around others, while the others report strong anxiety.