By W. R. Bion

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Additional resources for Second Thoughts. Selected Papers on Psycho-Analysis

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From this it was a short step to think of it as the kind of motor activity which Freud had described as characteristic of the supremacy of the pleasure principle ( 1 ) . " It was a remark that could refer to the likelihood of his producing any material for interpretation or, equally, to the likelihood that I would produce any interpretations. " I ought to have rung up my mother" could mean that his failure to do so was being visited upon him by the punishment of not being able to do any analysis.

It seemed that his sentence was but another instance of an inability to put words together properly. After this had been discussed it was seen that tears were very bad things, that he felt much the same about tears which came from his ears as he did about sweat that came from the holes in his skin when he had, as he supposed, removed blackheads or other such objects from the skin. His feeling about tears from his ears was seen to be similar to his feeling about the urine that came from the hole that was left in a person when his penis had been torn out; the bad urine still came.

57. M y second modification is that the withdrawal from reality is an illusion, not a fact, and arises from the deployment of projective identification against the mental apparatus listed by Freud. Such is the dominance of this phantasy that it is evident that it is no phantasy, but a fact, to the patient, who acts as if his perceptual apparatus could Differentiation of the Psychotic 47 be split into minute fragments and projected into his objects. As a result of these modifications we reach the conclusion that patients ill enough, say, to be certified as psychotic, contain in their psyche part of the personality, a prey to the various neurotic mechanisms with which psycho-analysis has made us familiar, and a psychotic part of the personality, which is so far dominant that the non-psychotic part of the personality, with which it exists in negative juxtaposition, is obscured.

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