For a variety of reasons, psychologists are beginning to see an increasing number of older adults in their practice. However, the sexualized transference and countertransference sometimes encountered with older adult patients can foster therapeutic impasse and resistance in treatment among both novice and experienced therapists. Societal taboos and therapy within the context of institutional settings (e.g., nursing homes) can make the management of these dynamics particularly challenging. Although difficult to broach, an analysis of sexualized dynamics can provide valuable information regarding an elderly patient's sense of intrinsic value, beliefs about power and agency, and difficulties with or desires for emotional intimacy. Case examples and implications for practice are presented.
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