ABSTRACT

This chapter deals with the nuts and bolts of preliminary interviews. Among Freud’s papers on analytical technique, “On Beginning the Treatment” mentions his habit of taking on the patient “at first provisionally, for a period of one or two weeks” which he calls “preliminary experiment” or “trial period” (Freud, 1913c, p. 124). His reasoning is the following: “If one breaks off within this period one spares the patient the distressing impression of an attempted cure having failed” (ibid, p. 124). Freud never explains why treatment could fail, however, as we shall soon see, continuing treatment depends on transference.