What Do Transference and Counter Transference Mean? | Cognitive Behavioural Coaching Works
Most commonly, transference refers to a therapeutic setting, where a person in developed within the therapeutic relationships he established with the For example, the therapist may be viewed as an all-knowing guru. Transference has been defined as 'the client's experience of the therapist that the 'real' relationship between client and therapist and some psychologists have . Frequently spoken about in reference to the therapeutic relationship, the classic example of sexual transference is falling in love with one's.
Freud came to argue that the work between patient and doctor was played out almost wholly in the transference relationship. Since then, the concept has been further developed and more recently transference has been described as a framework where the patient has fantasies and expectations of the analyst. The patient places the analyst in a varying role that may change between sessions, or even within a single session.
Basically, the main characteristic of transference in the world of psychotherapy is when a patient transmits feelings to his or her therapist, which actually apply to someone in his or her present life or past. How is Transference Used? Transference is used in psychotherapy to help patients work through past traumas. For example, a child who has been severely abused by a parent may undergo transference by perceiving the therapist as a parent.
Transference In Psychotherapy: Helpful or Harmful?
Because the child might expect this role to be negative or harmful, recovery of abuse could be possible when the therapist does not abuse the child. In this case, the therapist may endure strong feelings of anger from the patient, which can be helpful to the patient because it allows him or her to express feelings that he or she could not express in an abusive setting. Expressing these feelings could give her a feeling of relief, as if she had actually confronted her own parents.
More commonly, however, transference is of a romantic nature — not limited to relationships between client and therapists of the opposite sex.
Although transference is no indication of homosexuality, a patient with a same sex therapist could experience terrible confusion regarding romantic feelings toward their therapist. What is the Controversy About? Transference is extremely controversial and debated in the world of psychotherapy. While some therapists overstate its uses, others deny its purpose altogether.
Why is transference so contentious? The dispute within the world of psychotherapy surrounds this question: If the patient sincerely believes that she would have fallen in love with her therapist had they met in a social setting, how could it be proved that she is wrong?
Harmful Effects of Transference While many therapists use transference as a technique for psychotherapeutic rehabilitation, there are problems that can arise because of transference.
Some therapists may transfer their own feelings onto the client — a phenomenon known as countertransference.
In the realm of the doctor-patient relationship, the patient may generally do anything the therapist asks, including sexual behavior. Transference can become an especially sensitive issue if the therapist has a dual relationship with the patient. Therapists cannot always completely avoid social relationships with their patients.
Transference - Wikipedia
In these cases, it is likely that the therapist will have patients who experience transference reactions towards them. Transference reactions can also develop during therapy even if the therapist does not have a dual relationship with his or her client. If transference does develop, it can cause the patient to experience difficulties with other patients and therapists even after the therapy has ended. Furthermore, when a patient and therapist have a transference relationship, the patient could cease to look upon the therapist as a safe person to talk to.
That is the theory. Bauer and Mills contend, however, that practice is often far from that. They outline various forms of resistance — both on the part of the therapist and on that of the client — that get in the way.
Their discussion, artificially separated between client and therapist forms of resistance, follows. Client-centred resistance Client resistance to transference analysis is a crucial issue in the psychodynamic psychotherapies where transference is central to the work.
Client willingness and ability to examine the client-therapist interaction include some of the following forms of resistance. The process of identifying specific behavior patterns fosters therapeutic gains and client autonomy.
Over time, with repeated confrontations, it gets easier for the client to accept and address such themes. Refusal to consider transference as a possibility. Clients often resist exploration and working-through of transference by insisting that their reactions to and interpersonal conflicts with the therapist are based solely on the reality of the therapist: Such a client may insist that all feelings toward the therapist are fully justified by conventional explanations.
Dealing with Transference
An inexpressive, withholding character style, for instance, may be rationalised by attributing it to how threatening the therapist, or the therapeutic environment, is. Avoidance of responsibility, fear of autonomy. Therapist resistance In addition to client-centred resistance, there is also resistance engendered by the therapist which contributes to under-analysis of the transference.
Avoidance of here-and-now affect.
Transference In Psychotherapy: Helpful or Harmful?
Looking at their emotions in the here-and-now involves affect-heavy, potentially disturbing interactions for both client and therapist. The reality is that clients, for all their neuroses, sometimes have insightful perceptions of the therapist: It is often more comfortable for the therapist to revert to discussion of historical patterns in the client, and some therapists are so knocked by in-the-room affect that they resort to ego regression and acting-out.
Some therapists fear that difficult, anxiety-provoking interactions with the client will interfere with the development of the therapeutic alliance; actually, the reverse is true. Overemphasis on how past conflictual patterns developed.
It can also help the client feel secure that, as troubling to him or her as the patterns seem, they can be understood and — hopefully — sorted out. The therapist must remember, however, that the purpose of the therapy is to help the client modify patterns existing in the present, and explorations of the past should be subordinated to that goal. It is crucial to establish a safe, secure atmosphere and to understand the nature of the transference reactions, but failing to respond adequately to the client out of fear of distorting the transference or badly interpreting client communications does not achieve that safe therapeutic environment.
Difficulty in differentiating transference from non-transference.