The “ontranding” of the psyche

This article deals with the necessary dynamic between the psyche or movement and the object. The notion of movement serves as a material conception of the psyche, in the same way as the drive, the life-drive and language are material: they exist on the basis of a mutual defining relationship to a support, to an object. This necessity (or thought) is considered from within psychosis. Using the poet Antonin Artaud as the movement is illustrated which is not defined by their grounding encounter with the object. With a neologism psychosis is named as ontrand, both in the sense of approach as well as in the sense of distancing. On the basis of a fragment of a case it is explained that, in a way that is different, it is up to the analyst or therapist to ontrand psychosis. In support of this ontranden the case is made for a sufficient continuing constellation of objects. This translation is offered as what Winnicott meant by transitional objects and phenomena.

Moving House: On the “Toing and Froing” between Crisis Intervention and a Treatment Unit

This essay tracks the experiences of an excited psychotic woman who moves from a closed crisis unit to an open treatment unit. Initially the move has devastating consequences and she falls apart. After only a couple of days she is transferred back to the closed unit in a hypo-manic, completely excited, state. This is the beginning of a process involving both units. We decide to move her gradually: a couple of hours a day in the closed unit and a couple of hours a day in the open one. At first the only idea we have is to organise regular meetings between the teams. Very soon the idea develops to work more with her transference onto objects and places rather than with her transference onto members of the team. Work with a photo album quickly reduces her excitation. In a second stage we try to explain what went wrong with her first transfer and what worked with the second attempt. To this end we use the conceptual apparatus of Institutional Psychotherapy, the notion of contact (Szondi/Schotte), and Winnicott’s ideas with regard to the transitional object and the continuity of being.

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