January 1972

The Contract of Secrecy

Author Affiliations

Rochester, NY
From the US Army Hospital, Berlin. Dr. Babineau is now at the Department of Psychiatry, University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry, Rochester, NY.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1972;26(1):15-18. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1972.01750190017004

Consultative experiences with military and civilian intelligence agencies which require stringent secrecy as part of their operations and some personnel problems of these units are described, especially the influence of fantasy on recruitment and the discrepancy between these fantasies and the subsequent work realities. The role of the psychiatrist as consultant to these groups is discussed. A theme frequently noticed in these workers is the use of their contract of secrecy to erect boundaries in interpersonal relationships, and as a defense against scrutiny of their private lives or inner experiences.