Word of the Day

Saturday, December 22, 2012


\dee-kuh-THEKT\ , verb;
To withdraw one's feelings of attachment from (a person, idea, or object), as in anticipation of a future loss: He decathected from her in order to cope with her impending death.
Freud argued that grieving involved a process of remembering and reflecting upon all the memories associated with the deceased in order to sever an emotional connection, or “decathect,” and make room for new bonds and relationships.
-- Maria Cizmic, Performing Pain
Jonathan was the name of the boy in the pagoda with Michael. “He will continue manipulating Jonathan. We must get Jonathan to decathect from Michael.”
-- Chaim Potok, The Promise
Decathect originates from a combination of the Latin prefix de- implying an undoing or removal, and the Greek term kathek meaning "to keep, hold on to." It was originally used by Freud in the 1930s.
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