The other thing about psychiatry is the whole concept of countertransference and the way it explains the emotional connection between doctor (or med student) and patient. I’m experiencing some major countertransference at the moment toward my elderly gentleman who is going home tomorrow. This is going to sound bizarre, but I actually do think I will miss him. He’s a sweetheart, and if it weren’t for his bizarre apocalyptic delusion, I would try to get him into one of those Adopt-A-Grandparent programs. It’s quite sad to think of him going back to his apartment downtown, puttering around having more subclinical strokes and complaining about his “enormously fat” Russian home health aide who feeds him borscht and reads him Dostoevsky. (If you’re not a paranoid schizophrenic yet, read Notes from Underground and report back in two weeks!)
What are you going to do? You gotta let it go and be objective, I know. But I was thrilled when he drew a beautiful clock and cube for me this morning. Three cheers for the return of executive function.