Wednesday, November 18, 2009
Deconstructing GW's Psychological Test Report: She Steals My Ideas Then Says I Have No Insight
TO: Dr. Singh
FROM: Gary Freedman
DATE: January 21, 1997
RE: Psychological Testing - Additional Comment - Evidence of Test Evaluator's Subjective Bias (Jealousy)
Close examination of selected statements contained in the GW Psychological Evaluation ("test report") [dated May 1994] suggests that an irrational bias of the test evaluator may have played a more or less significant role in the tone and emphasis of the test report.
A suggestion of jealousy emerges when one extracts the following statements in the test report:
1. He believes that he is under surveillance by his former employer and that others are hostile towards him because they covet his intellectual abilities. (p. 2)
2. He expresses his conflicts using psychological metaphors and theoretical frameworks, although he has very limited insight into his difficulties. (p. 3)
3. [H]e immediately began the first session by giving me two voluminous, typewritten documents with the explanation that 'These are my autobiographical documents. It is a systematic account of my thought processes that I have written down since I was fired from my job. You can get a better sense of my personality by reading this.' (p. 3)
4. In fact, his central conflicts are (a) between his need to withdraw from people as a self-protection and his desire for a more gratifying relationship, and (b) between his efforts to become autonomous and independent and his dependency need for others to secure his sense of self-worth and appreciation.
Thus, the test evaluator depicts an individual with an inappropriate preoccupation with jealousy, who employs defensive intellectualization and denial, engages in elaborate intellectual rationalizations, and who therefore is unable to see the true nature of his psychological conflicts which center on individuation, autonomy, and self-esteem issues.
The entire picture changes, however, when one observes that my "elaborate intellectual rationalizations" to which the intern refers (see 3) encapsulate the very insights that constitute, in the view of the intern, my "central conflicts" (see 4) and which, according to the intern, are too painful for me to face.
The "central conflicts" to which the intern refers are, in fact, contained in the autobiographical sketch that I prepared, and which sketch, according to the intern, is nothing more than a collection of deluded intellectualized rationalizations that obscure my true difficulties.
Footnote 1 of my autobiographical sketch asserts: "In his inability to form close relationships with people without feeling threatened, the subject exhibits the characteristic traits of the schizoid. . . . The typical schizoid dilemma has been defined as a desperate need for love combined with an equally desperate fear of close involvement." The autobiographical writing proceeds to present this dilemma as a metaphor: "On a cold winter day. . ." Compare the GW intern's "insight": [One aspect of his conflict is] "his need to withdraw from people as a self-protection and his desire for a more gratifying relationship."
Footnote 2 of my autobiographical sketch asserts: "The relationship of the potentially creative child to the mother can be ambiguous and paradoxical, containing a mixture of strong dependency and seemingly incongruous autonomy." Compare the GW intern's "insight": "[Another aspect of his conflict is his] need to become autonomous and independent and his dependency need for others to secure his sense of self-worth and appreciation."
Thus, the GW intern has done a most remarkable thing: She appropriates as her own my carefully worked out insights into my psychological conflicts, then proceeds to devalue my capacity for insight and my ability to creatively transform these insights into intellectualized productions such as metaphors--then, to top it off, she claims that my belief that others covet my intellectual abilities is somehow deluded. 1/
In sum, the intern's test report has strong earmarks of jealous devaluation. It may in fact be the case that the test report conceals more than it reveals about the nature of my interpersonal difficulties: that what is disclosed in the present deconstruction of the test report says more about the nature of my interpersonal difficulties than what the report purports in its manifest content.
1/ The lack of originality and effort on the part of the intern is noteworthy. The testing was performed by the intern in May 1994, near the end of the academic year, to complete her internship requirements. I was advised that I was being offered the opportunity to take the testing free of charge to allow the intern to fulfill her quota of testing, as required by her academic program. The following observation at page 4 of the test report may well be projective: "Mr. Freedman's pressing desire to take the MMPI seems to be a token act. . . ." [Translation: I have a pressing desire to complete my internship; a token effort on my part is all that's needed.]