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Life of the mind: Between you and me

"She is someone who fought hard to escape an appalling background, and the day she finished her Master’s at Oxford her husband gave her a necklace in a Tiffany box. “I felt like a fairy tale princess,” she tells me, looking down to avoid my imagined disdain. "

By Anna Blundy  
I sipped my camomile tea. I spent quite a long time wondering if I was allowed to take tea into sessions with my psychotherapy patients. Does it look rude? I’m having a nice cup of warming, soothing tea and offering nothing (nothing liquid anyway) to the patient. After a while I took my cue from my own analyst, who seems to have an almost permanent cold and sips water throughout my sessions.

Recently a patient brought in her own takeaway coffee and I was considering making some crass interpretation about needing to sustain herself during an upcoming two-week break from…

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