[Skip to Content]
[Skip to Content Landing]
September 1972

Projective Identification in the Marital Relationship as a Resistance in Psychotherapy

Author Affiliations

Los Angeles
From the Neuropsychiatric Institute, Department of Psychiatry, University of California, Los Angeles.

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1972;27(3):410-413. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1972.01750270110017

Couples can set up a closed marital system which protects each of their internal worlds from modification by reality and thus presents as a tenacious resistance in psychotherapy. We have described a technique for circumventing such a system. This involves seeing the couple together, utilizing a male and female co-therapist, yet maintaining a strictly analytic approach, focusing on projective identification occurring in the transference.