Appreciation of the Importance of the Patient–Analyst “Match”

Judy L. Kantrowitz, PhD


In lieu of an abstract, here is a brief excerpt of the content:

In her 1938 paper, “Notes on the Psychoanalytic Significance of the Choice of Analyst,” Clara Thompson proposes that the personality of the analyst plays a role in the therapeutic result in psychoanalysis and observes that this fact was seldom (or ever?) reported. Providing detailed reflections on how particular personal characteristics of the analyst may impede certain patients and benefit others, she concludes that how these characteristics affect the outcome of treatment depends on the nature of the patient’s difficulties. Furthermore, sometimes, the nature of what I have called “the match” between patient and analyst, while initially detrimental to the analytic work, later can be facilitating to the process. Such transformations occur when analysts, through self-analysis or more personal analytic treatment, recognize how their personal difficulties contribute to an impasse and change in their interactions with this patient. To the best of my knowledge, it would be almost 50 years later before any observations of a similar nature appeared in a mainstream psychoanalytic journal  (Kantrowitz, 1987)<…>

Psychiatry, 79:1, 23-28, May 2016.

Link to Online Fulltext Publication


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Rita K. Teusch (2015). Sadomasochistic Relations Between Ego and Superego in Anorexic Patients. Psychoanalytic Psychology, 32/1: 191-212, October 2015.

Anthony D. Bram and Jed Yalof (2015). Quantifying Complexity: Personality Assessment and Its Relationship With Psychoanalysis. Psychoanalytic Inquiry. 35, 74-97.

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