Countertransference when dealing with “the intolerable” in severe traumatic situations: Omar’s case

Silvia Elena Leguizamón


The author focuses her paper on two outstanding issues deriving from her work with seriously traumatized patients: “The patient’s silent placement in the analyst”, i.e., “the intolerable” that the patient leaves in the analytical field and in the analyst; and “the readjustment of psychic and somatic balances”, which refers to the contact with reality, the drives and the body –the three main areas of exchange with the psychic level. Furthermore, the author deals with the counter-transference of the analyst when faced with “the intolerable” of these patients, based on clinical cases. She suggests that, for the patient that suffered a serious traumatic situation, the new object represented death and destruction, leaving him/her helpless and abandoned; and these archaic situations are overcome in the company of other person, a primary structuring object that the patient is now unable to find, a real process of late disobjectalization. The author also reflects on the meaning of reaching, by way of the analytical work, the limit of “the tolerable”. Providing the patients certain free areas where they can build their own ability to think and creatively generate certain aspects of their life, that would be part of the analytical work.


Intolerance; Tolerance; Trauma; Transfert; Violence

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ISSN 2282-0043 - Registered at the Court of Rome on Nov. 8, 2012, no. 305/2012

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