“Splitting of Psychic Bisexuality in Autistic Children”


“The topic inspired me when I read Frances Tustin stressing that, for an autistic child, there has been no right “marriage” between  the nipple-breast and the mouth. My hypothesis is that the autistic child fails to reach an internal bisexuality inside his/her caregiver (usually the mother). The psychic bisexuality is a kind of primitive oedipal triangle previous to the classical oedipal triangle mother/father/child. The consequence for the psychoanalytic treatment is that the therapist has to constantly reduce an internal splitting within his/her internal world of his/her own psychic bisexuality which is regularly split by the autistic child’s projections. I intend to give a clinical illustration.”

Prof. Didier Houzel

was born in 1938. He was analyzed first by Daniel Widlöcher, then by Nicole Berry. He is Professor Emeritus of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at the University of Caen (France), Full Member of the French Psychoanalytic Association. He was the winner of the Frances Tustin Memorial Prize in 2002. He is chief editor of the “Journal de la psychanalyse de l’enfant”, the only French review devoted to Child Psychoanalysis. He founded this review in 1986 in collaboration with Prof. Pierre Geissmann and Dr. Claudine Geissmann. He has worked with several Kleinian psychoanalysts, James Gammill in Paris, Donald Meltzer in London and the late Frances Tustin in Amersham. He is Past-President of the French Federation for Child and Adolescent Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy affiliated to the European Federation for Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy (EFPP). His work is primarily concerned with child psychoanalysis and more specifically the analysis of children with autism and psychosis. In collaboration with Didier Anzieu, he published papers on psychic envelopes. He also published several psychoanalytic articles on autism and childhood psychoses.