Thoughts about psychoanalysis


The psychoanalytic framework stresses the importance of understanding:

  • that each individual is unique,
  • that there are factors outside of a person’s awareness (unconscious thoughts, feelings and experiences) which influence his or her thoughts and actions,
  • that the past shapes the present
  • that human beings are always engaged in the process of development throughout their lives.

“Seeing an analyst, whether you go once a week or are ‘in analysis’ and go multiple times a week, opens a space for looking at what’s going on in the room, right there and then. You can get to so much when you deal with the feelings that come up related to the treatment. It’s a real, concrete relationship that will tell you so much about all of your other relationships. I can’t escape myself in analysis, I am getting so much further in my growth than I ever have before in traditional psychotherapy.”

-anonymous, 2014

“Each analysis bears innumerable roads untaken, and it is of course one of the existential realities of our work that it is impossible to know how any analytic relationship would have evolved given different choices along the way. In every analysis worth it’s salt, both participants change along the way for having encountered one another.”

-Tony Bass, Ph.D.

“Analytic work brings the opportunity to understand what these varied details signify, what particular changing sets of phantasies are at work in the patient’s mind-about his own body and its contents , and about other people and his social relation to them now or in the past. Many such bodily traits become modified and sometimes considerably altered after the analysis of the underlying phantasies.” 

-Susan Isaacs, d. 1948