Wagner’s opera, Lohengrin — based on a medieval myth — depicts the Christian hero, Lohengrin as a Christ-like, messianic figure, a mysterious and morally-pure stranger who arrives on the scene to right injustices and fight for good (that is, Christian values) against evil (pagan values). In Wagner’s opera, the hero is a Christian; the villains are non-Christian pagans.
In the 2018 Bayreuth Lohengrin production, the Israeli-American director Yuval Sharon turns the tables. Lohengrin is depicted as a cult figure. “In the ambiguous final scene of Mr. Sharon’s production, . . . the two lead female characters [one of whom is a pagan villain] appear not only to survive, but thrive: liberated from patriarchy, and for the first time given complete agency. Lohengrin, a failed hero, leaves in shame. And the gullible people of Brabant [the Christians], depicted as vaguely mothlike [in Nazi propaganda, Jews were described as vermin], are killed en masse by a single zap.”
“Mr. Sharon said he sees Ortrud [the pagan villain of the myth] as a sort of freedom fighter who liberates Elsa [the Christian], while the moth people of Brabant [the Christians] blindly follow the light of Lohengrin’s charisma to their deaths.”
MONKEY BUSINESS !!
CERTIFICATION OF FACTS REGARDING DOCUMENTARY EVIDENCE
ADVERSE TO SOCIAL SECURITY DISABILITY CLAIM NO. — — —-
1. On about December 23, 1992 I received via certified mail a copy of a pleading styled Response to Interrogatories and Document Request (Response), previously filed on May 22, 1992 by my former employer, Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld (Akin Gump) pursuant to D.C. Department of Human Rights (DHR) investigation, Freedman v. Akin Gump Hauer & Feld, Complaint Docket No. 92-087-P(N), an unlawful job termination matter arising under the D.C. Human Rights Act of 1977, as amended, D.C. Code § 2–1401.01 et seq. (the Act). I had been employed at Akin Gump as a paralegal from about March 3, 1988 to October 29, 1991. I had alleged job harassment and discrimination by Akin Gump under the Act in a Complaint filed by DHR on February 4, 1992. Akin Gump’s Response alleged that immediately prior to the termination the employer had consulted Sheppard Pratt, the firm’s Employee Assistance Program, as well as an unidentified psychiatrist concerning my mental health and that both parties concurred in the employer’s planned termination decision. Akin Gump’s Response alleged that at the termination meeting I “was told that” my “actual work product was not a problem.”
2. Three months earlier, on September 17, 1992, before I had become aware of the content of Akin Gump’s Response, I had filed with DHR a detailed, six-page letter describing the circumstances of the termination, which letter included an emphatic defense of my work product, see agency record at 527-532. A true and correct copy of said letter is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 1. The content of said letter is inconsistent with Akin Gump’s Response, to wit, “When terminated, he was told that his actual work product was not a problem.” It is my belief that, typically, people become defensive about things they have been accused of and rarely become defensive about things they have not been accused of. Also, said letter was against interest when written; I admitted to DHR that I was told by Race at the termination meeting that my work product was substandard, which would have been a valid business reason for the termination in itself.
3. In January 1993 I telephoned Judy Peres, a Sheppard Pratt counselor I had consulted on November 26, 1990 and with whom I had a confidential relationship, to inquire whether Sheppard Pratt could confirm whether it had spoken to Dennis M. Race, Esq. or Malcolm Lassman, Esq., both Akin Gump attorney managers directly involved in my termination. Thereafter, Peres prepared an internal memorandum dated January 15, 1992 [sic] (subsequently given to me by Suzanne Reynolds (deceased), Sheppard Pratt Director of Washington Operations, in early July 1993, see Paragraph 11 of this Certification) that states: “The D.C. Office has no record of a contact by Dennis Race or Malcolm Lassman concerning this client.” I no longer have the copy of said memorandum given to me by Reynolds. A re-typed version of said memorandum is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 2.
4. On April 20, 1993 I filed with the U.S. Social Security Administration (SSA) a claim for Disability benefits (mental disability) and thereafter filed with SSA, at SSA’s request, portions of Akin Gump’s Response, previously filed by the employer with DHR, see Paragraph 1 of this Certification, on May 22, 1992, that alleged that (1) an unidentified psychiatrist consulted by the employer advised that I suffered from mental impairment (later identified by the D.C. Court of Appeals as a “disorder,” see Freedman v. Dept. Human Rights, D.C.C.A 96-CV-961 at 4 (Sept. 1, 1998)), and that (2) I could not respond to supervision, coworkers, or usual work situations.
5. On May 17, 1993, Race filed with DHR a notarized Response to Additional Interrogatories and Request for Documents that (1) identified Gertude R. Ticho, M.D. (deceased) as the psychiatrist it had consulted and that (2) stated Race could not recall the name of the Sheppard Pratt counselor he contacted prior to my termination. A confidential memorandum from Race to File dated October 29, 1991, recording the events of the termination for Race’s future reference, failed to memorialize the name of the Sheppard Pratt counselor Race allegedly spoke with. A true and correct copy of said Response (agency record at 122-125) is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 3. (DHR did not send me a copy of said Response immediately following its filing on May 17, 1993; the pleading played no role in SSA’s award of benefits (effective August 17, 1993). Subsequently, in early 1996, the D.C. Corporation Counsel (William J. Earl, Esq.) provided me a copy of said Response, together with a complete copy of the DHR agency record, in connection with the appeal of the DHR no probable cause determination, Freedman v. D.C. Dept. Human Rights, D.C. Superior Court No. 95-MPA-0014 (1996) (Ellen Segal Huvelle, J.)).
6. On July 1, 1993 I received via USPS a copy of DHR’s Initial Determination in Freedman v. Akin Gump Hauer & Feld that concluded there was no probable cause to believe that my job termination by Akin Gump on October 29, 1991 violated the Act. Finding of Fact no. 6 of said Initial Determination states: “Respondent [Akin Gump] also sought outside professional guidance because of the emotional and psychological nature of Complainant’s [Gary Freedman’s] allegations and his coworkers responses. Respondent contacted an unnamed counselor from its Employee Assistance Program [Sheppard Pratt EAP] and an outside psychiatrist. Dr. Gertrude Ticho identified Complainant’s behavior, putting a negative meaning to virtually every event, as ‘ideas of reference’ and cautioned that individuals in similar circumstances may become violent. After Respondent’s investigators consulted with Complainant’s supervisor [Christine Robertson] and Respondent’s Management team [not identified], Respondent terminated Complainant’s employment.”
7. On the morning of July 2, 1993 I telephoned Dr. Ticho at her residence. I tape-recorded said conversation consistent with D.C. Code § 23-542. Dr. Ticho made statements in said telephone conversation that appeared to contradict DHR Finding of Fact no. 6, referenced in Paragraph 6 of this Certification. She stated: “I would never say such a thing about someone I have never seen[.]” Sometime later, I prepared a transcript of said telephone conversation from the audio cassette recording. A true, correct, and complete transcript of said conversation is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 4.
8. In the telephone conversation with Dr. Ticho referenced in Paragraph 7 of this Certification, Dr. Ticho agreed to send me a note stating that she had not seen me in private consultation and stating that she had never spoken to an individual named Race. A true and correct copy of said note dated July 4, 1993, agency record at 62, sent to me by Dr. Ticho and written on her letterhead, is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 5.
9. On the morning of July 2, 1993 I telephoned Sheppard Pratt and spoke with an individual who identified herself as Alana Baptiste, a Sheppard Pratt employee. I tape-recorded said conversation consistent with D.C. Code § 23-542. Baptiste made statements in said telephone conversation that appeared to contradict DHR Finding of Fact no. 6, referenced in Paragraph 6 of this Certification. Sometime later, I prepared a transcript of said telephone conversation from the audio cassette recording. A true, correct, and complete transcript of said conversation is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 6.
10. In a letter dated July 2, 1993, I advised the D.C. Rehabilitation Services Administration Disability Determination Division (Fay E. Peterson) (which at that time was considering my SSA Disability claim) of a report that my Akin Gump supervisor (Robertson) had taken precautionary measures to guard against my possible return to the employer’s premises (later in the day after the termination) with the intent to “kill” the supervisor and her employees. A true and correct copy of said letter is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 7. Previously that day, immediately following the termination, the supervisor had gone out of her way to ask me — in a friendly manner — to remain on the premises to complete the work I had been doing earlier in the morning, see agency record at 531 (Exhibit 1), apparently oblivious to her later reported concerns about my homicide risk or, shall we say, “homicide risk.” I responded politely, “I don’t work here anymore.” See agency record at 531 (Exhibit 1). I had no further communication with the supervisor.
11. In early July 1993 I met with Reynolds, Director of Sheppard Pratt Washington Operations, to request that Sheppard Pratt prepare a written statement confirming that it had no record of any communications with either Lassman or Race. The letter that Reynolds subsequently addressed to me, dated July 14, 1993, states: “We have no record of contact concerning you with either Dennis Race or Malcolm Lassman,” see agency record at 63-64. A true and correct copy of said letter is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 8.
12. On August 17, 1993, SSA issued an Award of Benefits letter. Days later, in a letter dated August 20, 1993, I advised SSA of the existence of documentary evidence that controverted DHR Finding of Fact no. 6, referenced in Paragraph 6 of this Certification, which agency finding was based on Akin Gump’s earlier proffer to DHR (on May 22, 1992) of medical evidence of my disability, see Paragraphs 1 and 4 of this Certification. A true and correct copy of my letter to SSA is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 9.
13. On an evening in late October 1993 I telephoned Dr. Ticho at her residence. I tape-recorded said conversation consistent with D.C. Code § 23-542. Dr. Ticho made statements in said telephone conversation that appeared to contradict DHR Finding of Fact no. 6, referenced at Paragraph 6 of this Certification. She stated: “I had no contact with the firm. Not the slightest contact.” Sometime later, I prepared a transcript of said telephone conversation from the audio cassette recording. A true, correct, and complete transcript of said conversation is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 10.
14. Under cover letter dated October 17, 1994, I forwarded to then D.C. U.S. Attorney Eric H. Holder, Jr. an audio cassette and transcript of the tape recorded telephone conversations I had had with Dr. Ticho and Baptiste in July and October 1993, referenced in Paragraphs 7, 9, and 13 of this Certification. A true and correct copy of said cover letter is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 11.
15. Under cover letter dated March 19, 1996 (and copied to D.C. Superior Court Judge Ellen Segal Huvelle), I forwarded to Assistant D.C. Corporation Counsel Earl an audio cassette and transcript of the tape recorded telephone conversations I had had with Dr. Ticho and Baptiste in July and October 1993, referenced in Paragraphs 7, 9, and 13 of this Certification. A true and correct copy of said cover letters are appended to this Certification as Exhibit 12.
16. Under cover letter dated June 3, 2014 I forwarded to FBI Headquarters (Mark F. Giuliano, Deputy Director) copies of all word processor disks created by me during the period November 1991 to fall 1996. Said disks contain the original versions of the documents referenced in Paragraphs 2, 7, 9, 10, 13, 14, and 15 of this Certification. A true and correct copy of said cover letter is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 13.
17. In March 2018 I forwarded to the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) (Civil Rights Division, Criminal Section PHB, Washington, DC) a copy of the criminal complaint dated March 13, 2018 styled U.S. v. Jonathan A. Page, Molly Evans, and Jonay Foster Holkins that I had earlier forwarded to the FBI Washington Field Office (Andrew Vale, Assistant Director in Charge). Included in said transmittal to DOJ was the original version of the audio cassette referenced in Paragraphs 7, 9, and 13 of this Certification. Said audio cassette was damaged but repairable. Said audio cassette also included a recording of a lengthy telephone conversation I had with former Akin Gump coworker Patricia McNeil, see D.C. Code § 23-542, on the evening of July 1, 1993 about my employment problems at Akin Gump as well as McNeil’s then-ongoing Title VII litigation. See McNeil v. Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld, D.C.D.C. No. 93-0477 (1993) (Joyce Hens Green, J.). In said telephone conversation McNeil made numerous statements, some of which are memorialized at agency record at 41, inconsistent with Akin Gump’s disability determination, which was a material basis of my SSA disability claim. In said telephone conversation I admitted to McNeil that I had filed for SSA disability benefits as a collateral attack on Akin Gump’s termination. A true and correct copy of agency record at 41 is appended to this Certification as Exhibit 14.
I certify that all of the foregoing statements are true. I certify that all of the Exhibits appended to this Certification are true, correct, and complete. I am aware that if any of the foregoing statements are willfully false I am subject to punishment and that if any of the Exhibits appended to this Certification are willfully false or altered I am subject to punishment.
3801 Connecticut Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20008
Telephone: (202) 362 7064
Sworn and subscribed to before
me this twenty-seventh day of July, 2018.
District of Columbia
My Commission Expires _____________________________
Fascinating paper about Bion and Beckett.
[Beckett] was pathologically and inextricably tied to his rejecting, harsh, and demanding mother.
Beckett wrote Waiting for Godot!!
Beckett’s relationship with his mother inspired the following chapter in The Emerald Archive.
In 1932 Beckett, following his father’s death, began two years’ treatment with Tavistock Clinic psychoanalyst Dr. Wilfred Bion. Aspects of it became evident in Beckett’s later works, such as Watt and Waiting for Godot.
I forward for your general information an email I sent to the Washington Field Office of the FBI regarding an inappropriate communication that Sheppard Pratt EAP (Washington, DC) reportedly had with my former employer (Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld) in 1991 that has facilitated ongoing Social Security Disability and Medicare fraud. This matter relates to a pending federal criminal complaint. (See link below.)
From: Gary Freedman <email@example.com>
Sent: Mon, Jul 23, 2018 1:27 pm
Subject: criminal complaint — heads up
TO THE FBI WFO:
I will be having the document in the attachment certified and I will send it to the FBI WFO in connection with the following criminal complaint dated March 13, 2018 that I previously forwarded to the FBI: U.S. v. [redacted], Molly Evans, and Jonay Foster Holkins. Said attachment is circumstantial evidence of state court perjury and Social Security Disability fraud, a felony in violation of 42 U.S.C. § 408(a)(2).
The criminal complaint is at the following link:
202 362 7064
This is Glen Gabbard’s case of Mr. U.
Mr. U came to therapy after three previously failed attempts. His latest treatment had lasted 3 years with a therapist in another city. Mr. U denigrated that therapeutic experience as “a complete waste of time” and could not even recall the therapist’s name.
He said that “doctor what’s-his-name” interrupted him a lot and was not a good listener. Mr. U talked at great length about his need for a really “special” therapist. He even speculated that there might not be anyone in the city who could really understand him. As Mr. U continued to ramble at some length over many weeks, his therapist began to dread each session. The therapist found his thoughts wandering to his plans for the evening, his financial status, unfinished paperwork, and a variety of other matters with little bearing on Mr. U and his problems. The therapist also found himself glancing at the clock more often than usual, eagerly awaiting the end of Mr. U’s session. When the therapist intervened, Mr. U would often ignore his comments and say, “Just let me finish this train of thought first,” or “Oh, yes, I’m already aware of that.” After returning from a 3-week vacation, the therapist resumed his sessions with Mr. U.
In the first session, the patient picked up where he had left off at the end of the previous session, as though no time had elapsed. The therapist, exasperated with the sense that he had no importance whatsoever to Mr. U, said, “You act as though we saw each other yesterday. Didn’t the 3-week separation from me have any impact on you?” Mr. U detected a critical, sarcastic tone in the therapist’s voice and replied, “You have the same problem as my last therapist. You’re always inserting yourself into this. I’m not paying you to talk about you or your feelings. I’m here to talk about myself.” All of us in the mental health professions have a need to be needed, and the oblivious patient challenges that fundamental psychological dimension in all therapists.
Is this me?
The Oblivious Narcissist
1. Has no awareness of reactions of
2. Is arrogant and aggressive
3. Is self-absorbed
4. Needs to be the center of attention
5. Has a “sender but no receiver”
6. Is apparently impervious to hurt feelings
Dr. Acharya at DBH said to me in February 2016: “I talked to some of your previous therapists. They all said they liked working with you and they said they learned a lot from you.” Doesn’t that count for anything?
I just changed my Atlantic City hotel reservation from 11 nights to 7 nights.
Copyright © 1996–2018 Booking.com. All rights reserved.
A supervising analyst would have a field day with my therapist if she was an analyst-in-training!!
PROBLEMATIC ASPECTS OF THE THERAPIST’S REACTIONS TO ME
— It is problematic for the therapist to base her entire intervention program solely on attachment-related principles. The therapist emphasizes her need to provide an attachment-based “emotionally-corrective experience” without regard for introjective aspects of my personality problems. See Dubois-Comtois, K. “Attachment Theory in Clinical Work with Adolescents.” “Clinicians should . . . refrain from basing their entire intervention program solely on attachment-related principles.” “Specific attachment-based intervention should only be conducted when the clinician suspects that it is related to the [patient’s] main issue with regards to [social] maladaptation. In most cases, attachment-based intervention should be used in conjunction with other intervention strategies.”
— It is problematic for the therapist to fail to modify her technique to suit the needs of my introjective personality. It is recognized that it is important that therapists early adjust their orientation — based on the therapist’s assessment of whether the patient is primarily struggling with relatedness problems or self-related problems of guilt (self-criticism) and identity-definition — in order to enhance treatment outcomes. Werbart, A. “Matching Patient and Therapist Anaclitic–Introjective Personality Configurations Matters for Psychotherapy Outcomes.” “Introjective depression, based on the sense that “I am a failure,” responds to classical psychoanalysis, with the therapist as a listener, helping to elicit growth in an independent sense of self. Anaclitic depression, based on the feeling that ‘I am not worthy of love,’ is effectively treated by a more assertive therapist, guiding the formation of relationships.” It is problematic for the therapist to deny the extent to which my introjective problems actually impair my ability to form relationships. My problem is not simply the absence of relationships but the presence of introjective issues. It is recognized that the development of interpersonal relations is interfered with by exaggerated struggles to establish and maintain a viable sense of self.
— It is problematic for the therapist to deny her responsibility to act as a patient listener to effect therapeutic change of my introjective problems and to assert, instead, that she must employ the role of “assertive therapist” to “[guide] the formation of relationships. See Werbart, A., above.
–It is problematic for an attachment-based therapist to censor the patient’s reports about his feelings of discomfort in relation to the therapist, preventing the emergence of clinical material that elaborates the patient’s internal working model that, in my case, involves fears of maternal engulfment as well as the narcissistic need for twinship, idealization, and mirroring.
–It is problematic for the therapist to censor the patient’s expression of the “negative transference.” Working through the transferred feelings is an important part of psychotherapy. The nature of the transference can provide important clues to the patient’s issues, and working through the situation can help to resolve deep-rooted conflicts in the patient’s mind.
–It is problematic for the therapist to deny the specific clinical presentation of an introjective patient, for whom the meaning of things is especially important. Valdez, N. “Verbal expressions used by anaclitic and introjective patients with depressive symptomatology: Analysis of change and stuck episodes within therapeutic sessions.” “It is problematic for the therapist to deny the patient’s need to address his concerns about maintaining a definition of the self (“I am a fish, not a dolphin.”). Introjective patients have distinct non-relational concerns that involve a “range from a basic sense of separation and differentiation from others (“I have mixed feelings about being different from other people”), through concerns about autonomy (“I get an ego boost out of being different from others”) and control of one’s mind and body (“I feel as if you’re trying to force me to be sociable”), to more internalized issues of self-worth (“So I heard him say, ‘See that guy over there, that’s Freedman. You could hear a pin drop in class when he speaks'”), identity, and integrity. The development of interpersonal relations is interfered with by exaggerated struggles to establish and maintain a viable sense of self. Introjective patients are more ideational (“You didn’t distinguish between the different attachment types”), and issues of anger and aggression (as in expressing feelings of confusion and frustration with the therapist), directed toward the self or others, are usually central to their difficulties.” Blatt, S.J and Shahar, “Psychoanalysis–With Whom, For What, and How? Comparisons with Psychotherapy.” It is problematic for the therapist to fail to recognize that an introjective patient will have more fully-developed cognitive processes than patients who are concerned with social relatedness. It is problematic for the therapist to fail to support an introjective patient’s need to think primarily in sequential and linguistic terms as well as analyze, critically dissect, and compare details.
–It is problematic for a therapist to fail to support an introjective patient’s associative capacities and insist that her need to provide feedback makes the support of his associative capacities inappropriate. Psychodynamically-informed treatment “was found to contribute significantly to the development of adaptive interpersonal capacities and to the reduction of maladaptive interpersonal tendencies, especially with more ruminative, self-reflective, introjective patients, possibly by extending their associative capacities. Supportive-Expressive Psychotherapy, by contrast, was effective only in reducing maladaptive interpersonal tendencies and only with dependent, unreflective, more affectively labile anaclitic patients, possibly by containing or limiting their associative capacities.” Blatt, S.J and Shahar, “Psychoanalysis–With Whom, For What, and How? Comparisons with Psychotherapy.” According to the authors, limiting patients’ associative capacities will promote therapeutic change only in relationally-oriented patients; conversely, limiting patients’ associative capacities will impair therapeutic change in introjective patients.
–It is problematic for an attachment-based therapist to fail to recognize that “[p]atients with a dismissive-avoidant attachment style (introjective patients) respond best to psychodynamically oriented interpretive therapy. Emotionally detached, isolated, avoidant, and wary introjective patients, who tend to recall more family conflicts and who view relationships with others, including the therapist, ‘as potentially hostile or rejecting’, found the exploratory emphasis in [interpretive therapy] liberating and conducive to therapeutic change.” Blatt, S.J and Shahar, “Psychoanalysis–With Whom, For What, and How? Comparisons with Psychotherapy.”
–It is problematic for the therapist to moralize about my failure to present the classic personality problems of so-called anaclitic patients who are dominated by concerns about interpersonal relatedness. Anaclitic patients tend to ask their therapists for more feedback as a way to be understood by them. The anaclitic patient’s receptivity to the therapist’s feedback may be an automatic response that may not necessarily signify that he is making conscious efforts to be compliant with the treatment process. Anaclitic patients are always desperately concerned about issues of trust, closeness, and the dependability of others (including therapists), as well as about their own capacity to love and express affection. They express exaggerated anxiety about establishing and maintaining interpersonal relationships, including the relationship with their therapist. These patients need to be cared for, loved, and protected. The fact that I don’t express these needs is not evidence that I am actively noncomplaint with the therapist’s technique. My response is largely an automatic response dictated by my personality style.
–It is problematic for the therapist to fail to recognize the counter-transferential nature of stigmatizing, black-and-white interventions, such as, “Why don’t you talk to a wall?” (in response to my communicating negative comments about therapy), “Do you think you are always right?” (in response to my questioning why the therapist seemed to ignore issues in my trauma history), “No other therapist would stand for this!” (in response to my talking about feelings of confusion and frustration in reaction to the therapist) and “You think you’re smarter than everybody else!” (after I mentioned that I had received an email about attachment theory from a university professor).
– It is problematic for an attachment-based therapist to fail to consider the possible defensive aspects of a therapeutic technique that, to some degree, might rationalize a therapist’s possible “preoccupied attachment” style. It might be productive for an attachment-based therapist to inquire into the possible irrational element in a technique that places inappropriate demands on an introjective/dismissively avoidant patient for emotional closeness and approval in which the therapist’s unconscious concern, “I want to be completely emotionally intimate with others, but I often find that others are reluctant to get as close as I would like” translates in the clinical situation to “This patient just doesn’t want to get close to me”; the therapist’s unconscious concern “I am uncomfortable being without close relationships” translates in the clinical situation to “I am uncomfortable with patients who don’t want to be emotionally close to me”; the therapist’s unconscious concern “I sometimes worry that others don’t value me as much as I value them” translates in the clinical situation to “This patient doesn’t value me. I become angry when I feel that a patient criticizes me. I am emotionally unable to work with a patient’s negative transference.” Does a therapist’s possible attachment insecurity that centers on the need for a high level of intimacy, approval, and responsiveness from her attachment figures translate in the clinical situation to inappropriate demands being placed on a dismissive-avoidant (introjective) patient for emotional intimacy and approval? That’s exploitation of a patient by the therapist — using the patient to serve her own emotional needs.
[And what is that? That’s Kohut’s case of Mr. U!!! His mother used him to satisfy her own emotional needs!! THIS IS UNCANNY!!!!!
“Subject’s object hunger, his idealizing merger needs are fixations on archaic pre-oedipal forms deriving from deficits emerging out of his relationship with an engulfing mother who used subject for her own selfobject needs and in his frustrating relationship with a father unavailable for idealization. Cowan, J. “Blutbruderschaft and Self Psychology in D.H. Lawrence’s Women in Love in Self and Sexuality” (2002). Subject’s idealization of males is a defense against being swallowed up by a woman. See Shengold, L. Soul Murder: The Effects of Childhood Deprivation and Abuse (see especially the chapter, “The Parent as Sphinx”). Subject’s psychology parallels Kohut’s analysand Mr. U who, turning away from the unreliable empathy of his mother, tried to gain confirmation of his self through an idealizing relationship with his father. The self absorbed father, however, unable to respond appropriately, rebuffed his son’s attempt to be close to him, depriving him of the needed merger with the idealized self-object and, hence, of the opportunity for gradually recognizing the self-object’s shortcomings. Cowan, Self and Sexuality at 59 quoting Kohut.”
Kohut describes our need for ideals and idealizing selfobject experiences. Children idealize their parents, he says, and go through a natural and gradual de-idealization process as they develop. The need for idealizing experiences that starts with our relationships with our parents gradually is replaced with other idealized objects, hopefully more abstract, more perfect, and more able to stand up under scrutiny. This process of maturation, the gradual deidealization of one’s own power, or one’s parents, is traumatic if the deidealization is too rapid or sudden. People need support from other important people in their lives [or historical figures?] when they experience a deidealization.