March 22, 2020
Dear Dr. Bernard Chervet
and dear colleagues!
I am a psychoanalyst from Moscow. Moscow has become empty. I’ve never seen Moscow in this condition. We now live in uncertainty and isolation.
I do not have experience with remote analysis. As of this week, I have needed to reorganize my entire working schedule. It is hard for some patients and for me.
As the government strengthens quarantine measures, people realize the “unknown” danger: the danger of disease and death. In the last two weeks of sessions, nobody has spoken about their hopes and aspirations, only about their fear of death, about their health and the health of their loved ones.
More and more, I read these posts, but most often I reread the post of Dr. Bernard Chervet:
At first, the traumatic neurosis is triggered—and we need more time, latent time, to re-find the logics of the “après-coup” (or the deferred effect). For the moment, everything we are doing is inscribed in the logic of the first traumatic time.
The elusive viral disease is a great source of threat and negative irrational transference. The belief in the power of super-mother super-father is broken; the demand that the government, the doctors and scientists, and psychoanalysis offer all-powerful solutions comes with great anger and sadness and reproaches about the abandonment, the distress…
So, we cannot have a debate on remote analysis in this context. Remote analysis is imposed on us. Everyone is concerned with their health and that of those close to them. And the logics of “traumatic neurosis” dominate.
Irina Sizikova, PhD, is a clinical psychologist at the children’s and teenage narcological department of Clinical Hospital in Moscow, a member of the Moscow Group of Psychoanalysts, and a member of the IPA.
ROOM is entirely dependent upon reader support. Please consider helping ROOM today with a tax deductible donation. Any amount is deeply appreciated.