Dear colleague, 6 December 1906, Vienna, IX. Berggasse
I am sure you will draw your conclusions from this “acceleration of reaction-time”! and guess that your last letter has given me great pleasure, which is far from being an auxiliary hypothesis.
It did indeed seem to me that you had modified your opinions with the purposive idea of pedagogic effect, and I am very glad to see them as they are, freed from such distortion.
As you know, I suffer all the torments that can afflict an “innovator”; not the least of these is the unavoidable necessity of passing, among my own supporters, as the incorrigibly self-righteous crank or fanatic that in reality I am not.
Left alone for so long with my ideas, I have come, understandably enough, to rely more and more on my own decisions.
In the last- fifteen years I have been increasingly immersed in preoccupations that have become monotonously exclusive.
(At present I am devoting ten hours a day to psychotherapy.)
This has given me a kind of resistance to being urged to accept opinions that differ from my own.
But I have always been aware of my fallibility and I have turned the material over and over in my mind for fear of becoming too settled in my ideas.
You yourself once remarked that this flexibility of mine indicated a process of development.”
I can subscribe without reservation to your remarks on therapy.”
I have had the same experience and have been reluctant for the same reasons to say any more in public than that “this method is more fruitful than any other.”
I should not even claim that every case of hysteria can be cured by it, let alone all the states that go by that name.
Attaching no ‘importance to frequency of cure, I have often treated cases verging on the psychotic or delusional (delusions of reference, fear of blushing, etc.), and in so doing learned at least that the same mechanisms go far beyond the limits of hysteria and obsessional neurosis.
It is not possible to explain anything to a hostile public; accordingly I have kept certain things that might be said concerning the limits of the therapy and its mechanism to myself, or spoken of them in a way that is intelligible only to the initiate.
You are probably aware that our ~ures are brought about through the fixation of the libido prevailing in the unconscious (transference}, and that this transference is most readily obtained in hysteria.
Transference provides the impulse necessary for understanding and translating the language of the ucs.; where it is lacking, the patient does not make the effort or does not listen when we submit our translation to him.
Essentially, one might say, the cure is effected by love.
And actually transference provides the most cogent, indeed, the only unassailable proof that neuroses are determined by the individual’s love life.
I am delighted with your promise to trust me for the present in matters where your experience does not yet enable you to make up your own mind-though of course only until it does enable you to do so.
Even though I look at myself very critically, I believe I deserve such trust, but I ask it of very few persons.
I hope to learn a good deal from your long-announced work on dementia praecox.
I have still formed no definite opinion on the dividing line between dementia praecox and paranoia, still less concerning the more recent terms employed in the field, and must own to a certain incredulity toward Bleuler’s communication’ that the repressive
echanisms can be demonstrated in dementia but not in paranoia.
But my experience in this field is meager.
In this respect therefore I shall try to believe you.
Dr. Freud ~Sigmund Freud, Freud/Jung Letters Pages 11-12