The Analytic Observer

Newsletter of the Chicago Psychoanalytic Society


June 1999


The President's Message
   by Henry Evans, M.D.

The Park Bench Project: A Parent-Toddler Program
   by Barbara Rocah, M.D.

The Outreach Committee of the Institute for Psychoanalysis
   by Robert Fajardo, M.D., and Herb Cibul, M.D.

From the Candidates' Association
   by Joanne Marengo, Ph.D.

Coming Events!

Back to Chicago Psychoanalytic Society Home Page

President’s Message

by Henry Evans, M.D.

This is my final column as President of the Society. I am grateful to all members of the Executive Committee who have contributed during my two years-long term: Phil Lebovitz, our President-elect, Harvey Strauss as Past President, Dick Herron, Treasurer, Steve Flagel, Secretary (preceded by Prudy Leib), Mark Levey, Counselor, Bob Gordon, Alternate Counselor, Mark Smaller, Representative for Public Relations and Lauren Kern, Representative for the Candidates’ Association (preceded by Ann Kaplan). Their feedback, suggestions and overall participation have added greatly to our discussions and have certainly helped me in conducting my work. I also appreciate the involvement of Society members in committee work; their efforts have often been strenuous and prolonged and are vital to the functioning of the Society. Lastly, I thank the Society membership for your involvement in the variety of programs sponsored by the Society throughout these two years.

In the past year we have initiated a variety of programs for our members.

(1) We have established a Psychoanalyst Assistance Committee. From time to time, a complaint questioning a Society member’s capacity to carry out clinical and/or other professional activities may be brought to the attention of a Society officer. Any such instance provokes considerable discomfort in all concerned. This program is meant to help structure and guide the exploration and evaluation of such complaints with compassionate concern for all parties, with effort to help assist fair and equitable resolution and with consideration of the Society’s legal responsibilities.

(2) We are also disseminating material with which each member can establish a Professional Will. This program was created to help the families, colleagues and patients of all members in the event of death of any of our members. This should help all concerned feel better prepared to deal sympathetically and thoroughly with the situations that arise when such tragedies occur. We strongly urge every one of our members to create such a will using the material supplied.

(3) We have established a Society Prize, a literary prize which may be awarded on a yearly basis, alternating between graduate and candidate members. The prize carries both a monetary award and an opportunity to present a winning paper before the membership. We are on our first year of this initiative. Submissions have been received and a committee is rounding out the procedures through which thoughtful and fair assessments can be accomplished.

(4) Work on creating our own brand of Association for Psychoanalytic Thought (see my last column) is proceeding nicely. The steering committee has met and work is in progress. Current plans include efforts to create membership from analytically informed/interested clinicians and a wide variety of individuals and groups from other fields who are using or are interested in the application of analytic thinking in their own areas. Tentative plans for programs are already in the works and the group is proceeding with efforts to establish a website through which to give notice of current and planned activities. Plans have also been established for gathering the modest funds needed to pay for this initiative and to provide for some backup services. Once this program is established many of our members may be interested in joining; the ideas and opportunities are exciting.

(5) The Executive Committee is developing ideas for a possible Speakers Bureau. Through such an entity, which could include honoraria specific to this program, we would hope to interest our members in public speaking engagements as part of our overall Public Relations effort. I am sure Phil Lebovitz will keep our membership informed about this agenda.

Our ongoing Public Relations work is proceeding well. Through the efforts of Mark Smaller and Dottie Jeffries there have been multiple public appearances by Society members. As we hoped, careful attention has built contacts within the media; the opinions of Society members are increasingly being sought out on a variety of issues of public concern. There is every reason to expect this awareness of the value of our points of view will grow in the face of ongoing efforts on our side.

Lastly, the dues increase instituted awhile ago has brought Society funds up to a good level. We are now able to create further opportunities for our members within the Society and for increasing public awareness of our membership and our value to the variety of communities we serve. Our funds also leave us better prepared for unexpected or unusual expenses, such as programs we can sponsor, possible legal expense, et cetera.

I have enjoyed my work as President and look forward to the programs and activities organized through our next President, Phil Lebovitz.


The Park Bench Project: A Parent-Toddler Program

by Barbara Rocah, M.D.

A new educational program has been developed, designed for parent/toddler pairs, that addresses the developmental tasks of children ranging in age from six months to two-and-a-half years. The staff leads parent discussions while the children play nearby under the supervision of another staff member. The discussions with parents will deal with concerns about typical developmental issues. Group leaders, Mrs. Nan Knight Birnbaum, Dr. Barbara Rocah, and Dr. Glorye Wool, will divide their efforts between facilitating discussions with the parents concerning their children's development, behavior at home, their activities in the group, and facilitating the play of the children. The supportive atmosphere of the group enhances parental learning. The richness of the interactions between parents, children, and staff, and the opportunity to see issues unfold, live, within the group contributes to the educational experience. This experience is neither a parent educational group nor a play group for children. It is an effort to integrate play and education as a means of understanding the child.

Psychoanalytic viewpoints about development and the parent-child relationship lend themselves to a group experience in which parents can both broaden their knowledge about their children and themselves and strengthen their sense of competence as parents. Parents can learn to understand the inner world of their toddler, the distinctive qualities of these early years, and the role of play as the language of early childhood. The group cohesion and the friendships with other parents that develop are important dimensions of the help offered in the group.

We anticipate that issues of particular concern to parents will include sleep problems, choosing baby-sitting arrangements, weaning, sibling rivalry, handling separations, anxiety over anticipated changes in family life, discipline, stresses of parents' work, and differences of opinion between mother and father. Similarly designed parent programs have proven particularly useful to first-time parents, adoptive parents, parents who have dealt with fertility treatment, parents of twins, and parents going through separation and divorce.

Each group is designed to consist of ten parent/toddler pairs. The groups will meet at The Suzuki-Orff School for Young Musicians (1148 W. Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL 60622) on Wednesday mornings from 10:45 to 12 noon, for ten weeks, at a fee of $15 per meeting. The next new group will be forming on September 8, 1999. Referrals of families who might benefit from this program and additional information can be obtained by calling 312-782-3188.


The Outreach Committee of the Institute for Psychoanalysis

by Robert Fajardo, M.D., and Herb Cibul, M.D.
(Editor's Note: An Institute activity you should know about)

The Outreach Committee has a 20 year history of dedication to the public at large. This includes providing information services and functions of the Institute for Psychoanalysis. The initial financial lifeblood of the committee was generously provided through a grant from the Polk Brothers Foundation. The committee now functions through Institute funds and program generated funding. The chairmanship has often been shared between a psychoanalyst and a Board member or other lay person. The psychoanalysts who have chaired the committee over the many years are Jerry Winer, Bob Fajardo, Arnold Tobin, and the new, current chair, Herb Cibul. Each chairperson brings their own new vision, and a sense of direction to the committee. The committee is made up of approximately 10 members. Some of the members are psychoanalysts and some are interested lay persons and Board members. The committee's basic mission of trying to "reach out" to the community. Outreach always evokes a lively and spirited working relationship within the group.

Efforts to acquaint the public with psychoanalytic perspectives about mental health treatment, guidance, and education have been conducted through lectures, panels, dialogues, performances, and discussions about plays, movies, and art exhibits. Lectures and dialogues have been held at the La Salle Bank, the Cultural Center, and the lst Chicago Auditorium. Discussions following plays have been held at Steppenwolf , Victory Gardens, the Goodman Theater, Truman College, and at Michael Halberstam's Writer's Theater Workshop at Books on Vernon in Glencoe. Discussions about art exhibits and selected films have been presented at the Art Institute, at local private clubs, and at our Institute campus. Occasionally a function has been held at someone's home.

The success of the programs, as measured by public attendance, has varied over the years. The timeliness and nature of the selected topics, the medium of presentation, the locale for the event, the cost to the public, and other factors (weather, etc.) determine the attendance. The feedback we receive is encouraging for all of the programs have been appreciated and enjoyed by those in attendance.

Over the years, the list of psychoanalysts who have contributed their expertise, through public discussions and panels, is extensive and includes the following Society members: Virginia Barry, Barry Childress, Herb Cibul, Judy Davis, Henry Evans, Barbara Fajardo, James Fisch, Benjamin Garber, Mark Levey, Phil Lebovitz, Kenneth Newman, Colin Pereira-Webber, Barbara Rocah, Brenda Solomon, Richard Telingator, Arnold Tobin, and Marian Tolpin.

The committee's current interest is for programs in parent education, child guidance, the mid-life crisis, violence, and homosexuality . They plan to conduct these programs off-campus both at a nearby city and suburban locales.

For example, one recent program was held in Elmhurst as a part of that school district's "Parent University Day" (a local day program for parent education). While the Elmhurst turnout for our program was low, it was the first psychoanalytic offering in that community. The program served to establish a working relationship with both the program organizers and the local art museum, The committee works also to establish these kind of ongoing. Through these efforts to "reach out," there are many satisfactions in this active committee.


From the Candidates' Association

by Joanne Marengo, Ph.D.

The Candidates' Association elected new officers for the 1999-2000 academic year. Assuming office as of July 1, 1999 are Judith Lichtenstein M.D., President; Joshua Kellman M.D., Secretary; Alice Bernstein Ph.D., Treasurer; Linda Marino Ph.D., President-elect; and Joanne Marengo Ph.D., past-President. Annette Stillerman Ph.D., who ably represented us during the first six months of the Progression Committee's experimental effort to have a candidate representative present during Progression Committee discussions, also reaches the end of her term, on July I, 1999. Ann Kaplan Ph.D. will be assuming the role of candidate representative to Progression Committee on that date.

Dr. Ken Newman, Dean, was invited to the June 1999 meeting of the Candidates' Association to discuss the dilemma faced by some candidates regarding their graduation requirement of a terminated case. The complex nature of some control cases, along with the candidates' commitment to caring for their patient's and addressing the many concerns of their patients often results in a lengthy analytic process. Graduation then becomes quite delayed for some very talented candidates. The link between graduation and the termination of control case is therefore a concern. Dr. Newman offered to bring this issue along with other issues related to graduation and case termination to the faculty.

Editor.................Richard I. Herron, M.D.
Asst. Editor.........Phil Lebovitz, M.D.
Assistant to the Editors.... Ms. Eva Sandberg

Coming Events:

Chicago Psychoanalytic Society Meetings


June 22, 1999 at the Dental School 7:30 PM

Presenter: Henry Evans, M.D.
Presidential Address: Fear and Adaptation: The Role of Consciousness

Chicago Psychoanalytic Society Home Page