Creating the Capacity for Attachment

Treating Addictions and the Alienated Self

By (author) Karen B. Walant

Publication date:

07 July 1977

Length of book:

320 pages


Jason Aronson, Inc.

ISBN-13: 9781568215099

Detached, alienated people, many of them functioning with a pathologically developed false self, barely navigate life's challenges. Our cultural emphasis on autonomy and separateness has led to a retreat from valuing interpersonal, communal dependence and has greatly contributed to a rise in the number of people whose suffering is often expressed in addictions and personality disorders. Using actual patient material including diaries and letters, Karen Walant's Creating the Capacity for Attachment shows how 'immersive moments' in therapy—moments of complete understanding between patient and therapist—are powerful enough to dislodge the alienated, detached self from its hiding place and enable the individual to begin incorporating his or her inner core into his or her external, social self.
Walant has added a missing piece to the therapeutic puzzle. She stresses the central need for intellectual and emotional immersion in the therapeutic process both for the patient and the therapist. Walant demonstrates her techniques using moving case histories of patients suffering from psychiatric illnesses, as well as those affected by addictions. Her use of well-chosen quotes fro the world of literature, poetry, and religion makes reading the book a sheer pleasure as well as an intellectual adventure....