General Question

tinyfaery's avatar

Does productive therapy require therapist/patient transference?

Asked by tinyfaery (41661points) June 8th, 2010

I’m trying therapy, again. In the past, therapy never helped me much with my issues. My current therapist hypothesized that therapy has never done much for me because I have never allowed myself to become attached to my therapist. Defense mechanism.

What do you think? If I don’t allow for transference will therapy ever be helpful for me?

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14 Answers

YARNLADY's avatar

No, I think it’s more a feeling of being part of a team. You and the therapist work together to discover the path that will be the most useful to you. The changes you want in your life are going to be a life long journey, and the therapist can help you find tips and ideas that can help lead you along. They are not there to fix you, but rather to help you find your own way.

anartist's avatar

It certainly doesn’t hurt to genuinely like your therapist.
And for that matter, a therapist who genuinely does not like a patient should recommend the patient elsewhere.

marinelife's avatar

I think you have to like the therapist as a person at least enough to be relaxed with them and comfortable enough to trust them.

nebule's avatar

I told my counsellor something today that I couldn’t tell anyone else… that speaks volumes… for me anyway… with very close family and friends

dpworkin's avatar

Transference is part of the human condition, not merely part of the therapist/analysand relationship. Also, it pretty much just tends to happen. I suggest that you not worry about having done it “wrong”. In my experience, It’s usually that you haven’t found the right therapist yet, not that you have been doing your therapy badly.

casheroo's avatar

It took years until I found a therapist I liked. I had the same for years but I could tell he was so frustrated with me, which almost made me act out just to bother him (I was a teenager…that may have played a part) It got to the point where he refused to see me, and I refused to do as he said.
I think you definitely need to trust and like the person you are talking to..but like any relationship, that takes time. Let it take the time it needs, you’ll see eventually that it gets better and you’ll heal your issues along the way.

anartist's avatar

@casheroo and like any relationship it will have ups and downs— especially if you are going through some difficult stuff

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

Well…it is true that my therapist and I have a ‘transference’ relationship – he has told me things that I don’t believe he tells many of his patients…a lot of the time, I think, he saw himself in me and wanted to help and I wanted to help him through things that I do have a good grasp on. He’s been my therapist since 2004 and we have grown together, I believe – it took many months for me to trust him though and I always appreciated that he made it seem like I am his equal. But, I don’t think transference is a must, though – I still think you can benefit from therapy.

anartist's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir you are moving into the area of counter-transference, not always considered a good thing, but it may do no harm if it helps you continue working on your issues

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@anartist Oh I’m not working through any issues, at this point – I just go seem him every 3 months for my prescription and spend abt. 10 min in his office.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

I think it’s supposed to work that way. That’s probably why F2F therapy does nothing for me. All therapists can do for me is prescribe pills. I understand that this is very common with adults in the autism spectrum.

anartist's avatar

@stranger_in_a_strange_land with autism aren’t emotional bonds difficult as a rule? and trying to develop one for therapeutic reasons harder still? Is it more effective for you to deal with most people with rationality and humor than with warmth?

if it is NOMB just say so.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

@anartist Very true.There was only one person I could truly open up to. She happened to be a psychologist, but ethical canons prevented a spouse from being an “official” therapist.

anartist's avatar

@stranger_in_a_strange_land you were lucky she shared your life.
BTW you do not have the personality of a floor tile [although the line is very funny]

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