Help us sharing our research, consultation and experiences

Donate Now

The walls within: working with defenses against otherness

Online Conference 5-11 July 2021

The Impossibility of Trust

This presentation is about trust, the capacity to think and early object relationships.It has been said that Psychoanalysis is the impossible professional. I put to you that the development and maintenance of trust in organisations of any kind, is impossible. I will try to explain why I think that, and attempt to understand some underlying mechanisms. I believe that without simplification, mans' behaviour is an infinite undefined tangle which makes orientation and action impossible. So, I will attempt to follow Poincare' advice to unite elements long since known, but scattered and seemingly foreign to each other, so that we can see each element in the place it occupies in the whole. (Bion 1992). In examining the role of trust in organisations, one must also examine mistrust, and if Freud was right in saying that hate is earlier than love, (1915), then trust starts at a considerable disadvantage. AS There is of course good evidence that mankind can transcend this disadvantage, but at the group, organisational, national and international levels, there is unremitting evidence that mistrust still has the upper hand. So why is trust, so desirable, and so elusive? 'My tentative answer is that we are dealing with human destructiveness at a very early developmental level. But, as Nietzche, later echoed by T.S. Eliot, asked, 'How much truth can the mind endure?' My response is that the most trustworthy measure of any thought is the resistance it overcomes.