This work is on clinical issues in the psychotherapy of women. It is the companion volume to Charlotte Prozan's "Feminist Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy", which traces the history of psychoanalytic and feminist understanding of female development and personality and demonstrates that both psychoanalysis and feminism have much to learn from each other. Psychotherapists need a thorough understanding of feminist issues in order to help women with today's conflicts and opportunities. The feminist movement has brought attention to the many ways that girls and women have been taught to limit their aspirations and have suffered from deprecation and sexual exploitation. Not all patients are alike, and not all women patients are alike. Some must learn to let down barriers and make a connection to the therapist, whereas others need assistance to construct ego boundaries and not merge with the therapist. Some need to recognize anger and express it, whereas others are filled with undifferentiated rage and need help in clarifying, understanding, and controlling anger so that it can become a constructive tool rather than a destructive identity.
Some need to learn to cry and some need to stop crying and make changes. Prozan covers all the major clinical issues faced in therapy with women: mother-daughter relationship, the fears of women, problems of the new woman, eating disorders, battered women, sexual abuse, therapist-patient sex, lesbianism, mid-life crises, problems of the older woman, and the abortion decision. With each problem Prozan reviews both psychoanalytic and feminist approaches and illustrates their integration with clinical examples, including process recording and verbatim reports of exactly what she says to the patient. The feminist view is an additional layer of understanding on a psychodynamic foundation. This integration offers help and hope to the many women who turn to psychotherapy in times of psychological stress.