Countertransference Hate, Suicidal Patients, and


Conclusion: In the end, it appears that Ms. Kondrot should have called Chucks parents and asked them to intervene with their troubled son. Why didnt she? Other questions remain. Did Ms. Kondrot experience any of the reactions mentioned in the paragraph above? Did she go through grief, anger or betrayal — or perhaps self-doubt or inadequacy? Readers are not informed in the Bernstein article. Ms. Kondrot testified at the trial that if she broke Chucks trust it might “make his depression worse” and tossing him out of school would have been “devastating” (Bernstein, p. 4). But since death is worse than depression, Ms. Kondrots rationalization at the trial sounds pretty thin in hindsight. She was trying to save her own skin. And as for the countertransference issues that may apply to Chucks case, all a reader can do is conjecture that perhaps at various times Chuck hatefully attacked Ms. Kondrot and others who tried to counsel him. But it is pure conjecture because the only evidence applicable in Bernsteins article is that Chuck hated his own life, not his therapists or counselors.

Works Cited

Bernstein, Elizabeth. (2007). After a Suicide, Privacy on Trial. The Wall Street Journal (March

24, 2007),

Lipschitz, Hendin H., and Maltsberger, J.T. (2000). Therapists of Patients who Committed

Suicide Reported a Wide Range of Emotional Responses. American Journal of Psychiatry,

Volume 4, p. 96).

Maltsberger, John T., and Buie, DH (1974). Countertransference Hate in the Treatment of Suicidal Patients. Archives of General Psychiatry, 30(5), 625-633.


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