Empathizing and being empathized are co-created. When an analyst enter the patient’s behavioural-emotional, procedural and finally declarative knowing, the patient can let or forbide that "visit". Under this point of view, difficulties and failures in the process of the empathic understanding are one joint feature both of the analyst and of the patient. The analyst cannot stand only upon her/his empathic attitude, that enables her/him to stay connected with her/his patient or to enter the patient’s feelings. The process by which this empathic understanding is generated and the obstacles we meet along the path become crucial points of reflection both during a session and for ourselves. In addiction, I stated that several babies’ attitudes, such as transmodality, must be considered as developmental precursors of the procedural components of empathy. They are necessary, but non sufficient conditions. Entering the patient’s private world is a co-created event, and it requires all the sensorial and imaginative modalities that are available for the analyst as well as for the patient.
Frank M. Lachmann, in "SETTING" 33-34/2012, pp. 5-24, DOI:10.3280/SET2012-033001