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Appreciating the unconscious


Q: I have often struggled to get my analytic patients to deeply appreciate and reverence the nature of the unconscious. I suspect it is the result of the postmodern rot - akin to a fast growing cancer (and as lethal). It has sometimes occurred to me to lock my more resistant patients in the dark in a cellar under my house to facilitate a deeper appreciation of the unconscious. This is probably close to Frau Fraudenshwester's expertise, so I would be moved by her comments.

Herr Prof Dr Lindegger 

PS: How did they ever discover her under the floorboards?


Mein Herr Professor, Dr Lindegger,

I feel your pain. It took some years and much persuading to convince Sigmund of the existence of the Unconscious. He kept on insisting that a ìcigar was just a cigarî when it was blatantly obvious that it was the same shape and size of hisÖyou knowÖhis petseleh* down there. He would stand in his underpants and screech: ‘Unbewusste! Unbewusste!! Ich darf es vi a loch in kop!! (Unconscious! Unconscious! I need this like a hole in the head!) I said: "Exactly! It is like a hole in the head. A hole where everything disappears!" I think that was when the shekel dropped and it was at this point, since you ask, that he started persuading me that a small pied a terre under the floor boards would be like a holiday on the French Riviera at night.

However, Herr Lindegger, it is clear that you yourself are lost in this wilderness of postmodern doubt that is intent on sucking the authority out of psychoanalysis. (Believe me, this rot started long ago when Papa Ferenczi began kissing and tickling his patients). Remember Professor, it is you, not the patient, who must never doubt the existence of the unconscious and your divine right to decide what is going on in the patient’s mind. I have many analysts who are in your lamentable position who have extended their quivering arms to me. Many of their patients have started calling them by their first names, and I know of one analyst, in intensive rehabilitation, whose patients began referring to him as: "Hey you!" and even sitting upright on the couch.

Let me give you a little aitzeh**: In the old country they used to say, if you want to control the household put a little extra pepper in the matzo balls. Put a little threat into your interpretations (a little castration anxiety can go a long way) and never, ever let the patient finish a sentence.

Az men trinkt ale mol esik, veyst men nit az es iz do a zisere zakh!***

Keep the faith ,

Vrau Freudenschwester


* little penis

** advice

*** when you give the patient vinegar, he does not know that anything sweeter exists.

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