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Transference/Erotic Transference

Anne Onymous

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Some readers and I have been discussing the issues and feelings around transference/countertransference in the 'reply' section of a question on the 'Ask Dr Dombeck' page on this site and I thought it might be good for us to discuss what we have been saying here, so that others may join in, if they wish.

I have been in therapy (Psychoanalytic) for the last 18 months with a wonderful therapist (Christine), who is understanding and caring (and not afraid to show it). I love her deeply and sometimes have very strong feelings - both sexual and non-sexual - for her.

Although it was hard, I told her this and we have just started to begin to discuss it. It is so hard, but she is very understanding and careful with my feelings. I know this is a source of great angst for many of you out there - as indeed it is for me - you can't help the way you feel, and sometimes the strength of feeling/frustration is over whelming.

I thought it might help both myself and others to discuss our feelings/experiences here, as a way of both feeling support/understanding and knowing that you 'are not the only one'. I hope too that it may give some of you the courage to discuss these feelings with your therapists.

Christine told me last night that she does not distinguish feelings that she has in and outside of therapy sessions - they are one and the same - and that love within sessions is just as valid as it is in the outside world. She said that she would not sign her emails to me 'with love' if this were not so. However, she said that her loving feelings for me are not the same as mine to her (I knew this, obviously, but it was so hard hearing it). There is a part of me that is glad, as I have a loving g/f (I am gay) and would not wish to jeopardise that relationship, or the healing relationship I have with Christine. But at the same time it is very hard to know that someone who you have such deep feelings for does not feel for you in the same way - although Christine is quite clear about the fact that she does care for me deeply (and her actions/words show this).

I know I need to talk about this more with Christine - I was abused by a female teacher when I was younger and had a relationship with her for 2 years - but it is hard. I know this is wrapped up in my erotic transference. I am lucky though that Christine is so understanding and caring. My loving feelings for her - both sexual and non sexual- are very real though and I find it very difficult to cope with the fact that one day I will have to say goodbye to her and will never see her again. I just do not know how I will cope with this, or if I will ever cope with this.

Best wishes to you all


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Dear All

I have been wondering about doing this for a while and have finally taken the courage to start....I have set up a blog to enable me to write a little about my life and experiences, in the hope that it may help others know that they are not the only ones. I have only just started it (and haven't quite got the hang of the formatting, as it seems to have come out in one massive paragraph!) and don't know how often I will write, but if you are inteested, you can find me here: http://lifelovingtherapy.blogspot.com/

I hope that it will offer some hope for you all.

My best wishes to you all


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