Momentums of Meeting

by Lora Heims Tessman, PhD

Photograph by Shellburne Thurber, 2003


In this article, I attempt to engage questions about the momentums of the moments of meeting formulated by Lou Sander as propitious for early development. I wanted to portray observations that grapple with the intersection between psychic change and complex dynamics, like imagistic confluence with verbalized interaction, embodied recognition from parent to child, and affecto/libidinal communication between patient and analyst. The focus is on four different directions for comments: (1) Some links to my own clinical practice and research; (2) An instance of “confluence of visual image between patient and analyst”, a moment of imagistic meeting, as understood through self-analysis by an open-minded analyst, including the discovery of “the importance of unsuccessful empathy in learning and growing”; (3) A study of “engrossment,” exemplifying the ways in which the earliest moments of “recognizing” ones infant, can engender joyful, expansive affects, with enhancement of self-image in fathers; and (4) The continuing generative momentum of Lou Sander’s participation within the Boston Change Process Study Group.

Psychoanalytic Inquiry, 39 (1): 88-97, 2019.

Link to Online Publication [fulltext can be requested from the library]

About the Author:

Lora Heims Tessman, PhD, is author of The Analyst’s Analyst Within and Children of Parting Parents, member of The Boston Psychoanalytic Society and Institute and Institute for Psychoanalytic Training and Research (NY), and practices psychoanalysis and supervision in Newton, Massachusetts.

Previous Posts:

Jane Hanenberg, EdD (2019). Review of the book Demons in the Consulting Room: Echoes of Genocide, Slavery and Extreme Trauma in Psychoanalytic Practice ed. by Adrienne Harris, Margery Kalb, and Susan Klebanoff. American Imago 76(2), 274-278.

Paola M. Contreras, PsyD (2019). Working with the Human Trafficking Survivor: What Counselors, Psychologists, Social Workers and Medical Professionals Need to Know. In Working with the Human Trafficking Survivor: What Counselors, Psychologists, Social Workers and Medical Professionals Need to Know, edited by Mary C. Burke. Routledge, pp. 61-80.

Rodrigo Barahona, PsyaD (2019). Unlaid Ghosts: A Discussion Of Maria Grazia Oldoini’s “Abusive Relations and Traumatic Development: Marginal Notes on a Clinical Case”. Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 88:2, 277-295.

Sarah L. Lusk, PhD (2019). A Psychoanalytic Approach to the Complexity of Understanding and Treating Patients with ADHD Beyond Childhood: The Experiences of Two Psychoanalytic Candidates. The Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 72:1, 61-70.

Anthony D. Bram, PhD, ABAP, FABP (2019). The Subjective Impact of Separation and Divorce on a Latency-Aged Child and His Analysis. Psychoanalytic Study of the Child, 72:24-32.

Anna Ornstein, MD (2019). Six Million and One: a documentary. In Cinematic Reflections on the Legacy of the Holocaust: Psychoanalytic Perspectives, edited by Diana Diamond and Bruce Sklarew. Routledge, p. 40-50.

Click here to see a full archive of featured papers. All articles can be requested from the library.