Because parents often act as ‘authority figures’, they create for their children a certain amount of anger and frustration. In later life when the child or adult relates to what he or she perceives as authority figures, the anger and frustration experienced with the parents can be revived and aspects of the parent-child relationship relived.
Where possible a person uses relationships in later life to examine and resolve problems arising from childhood experience. A psychoanalyst provides a context in which this is possible.
Like all adults, none of whom is free from the influence of the past, the therapist’s own encounters with his or her parents have created emotional problems. Psychoanalysis is also therefore concerned with how the therapist’s psychological problems can cloud the judgements that must be made in therapy.
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