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Past Impressions

Prior relationships cast a long shadow over our social lives

9:38am, June 5, 2007

In a 1948 book, psychoanalyst Theodore Reik described an extraordinary "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde"–type identity change that he underwent in the minds of many patients during therapy sessions. At the start of each encounter, Reik wrote, patients perceived a bald, elderly man with a big nose and glasses who presented a thoughtful, friendly demeanor. In other words, they saw the therapist for who he actually was.

In the heat of therapy sessions, however, the real Reik disappeared from the

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