A Headshrinker's Guide to the Galaxy

Psychoanalytic wisdom for everyday life

Is Psychoanalysis Right for Me?

Psychoanalyst Donald Winnicott said it best: Psychoanalysis is for those who want it, need it, and can take it. Read More

I am curious to know,

I am curious to know, Jennifer, where you stand on self-disclosure by the therapist. Are you against it as Freudians are (or were) or are you for it?

how long to know if it's working?

Assuming that a patient decides that analysis is right for him or her, how many sessions should the patient commit to with the therapist before he or she is in a position to decide if the process is worth continuing? 10? 25? 50? 100? 500?

Great questions, fellow readers

Thanks, readers. I am curious about the questions that you guys have asked. I hope Dr. Kunst answers. I have one for her, too. She said that the best thing to do if interest is to make an appointment with analyst to see if analyst thinks it is right for you. About what percentage of patients who can afford it, Dr. Kunst, do you turn away because you think it is not right for them? Out of the last 20 people who have come to see you for a consultation and could afford it, how many did you say, "No, you're not right for this," to?

My plan to respond to your comments

Hi, everyone, and thanks for your comments. I am collecting them and plan to write a post to answer some of my readers questions. I really appreciate your taking the time to comment. - Jennifer

One more question

One more question, for when you respond in your post to these inquiries. What happens to the analysis when the analyst hears something several months into the analysis so personally repugnant that the analyst feels s/he can't continue to do good work in good faith? Like, that the analysand uses corporal punishment with her children and will not change this behavior; or suddenly reveals that he or she espouses extreme right-wing, racist, or anti-gay causes; or is holding knowledge of a serious crime committed by someone else. What do you do? Call off the analysis? Give a refund? Refer? What's your responsibility to the client in this case?

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Jennifer Kunst, Ph.D., is a clinical psychologist and psychoanalyst, working with adults and couples in her private practice in Pasadena, CA.

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