Paranoid anxiety is a term used in object relations theory, particularity in discussions about the Paranoid-schizoid and depressive positions. The term was frequently used by Melanie Klein, especially to refer to a pre-depressive and persecutory sense of anxiety characterised by the psychological splitting of objects.
For the extreme forms of such anxiety, he coined the term 'terror', to convey something of the qualitatively different intensity of their nature.
The anti-psychiatrist David Cooper argued indeed that "The therapist in working with people might far more often have to confirm the reality of paranoid fears than in any sense disconfirm or attempt to modify them", but most family therapists would probably agree that this is an extreme and one-sided position.
Conversely, paranoid fears, especially when systematised, may themselves serve as a defence against a deeper, chaotic disintegration of the personality.
Persecutory anxiety state (panic attack) and persecutory delusion
- Depressive anxiety a parallel concept of general anxiety yet arising from the depressive position.
- Persecutory delusion
- Panic attack
- Paranoid personality disorder
- psychotic paranoid symptoms in Borderline personality disorder
- paranoid ideation in Symptom Checklist 90
- persecutory type in Delusional disorder
- Psychoanalytic concepts of love and hate
- Types of stalkers, particular Intimacy seekers in Stalking
- ICD-10 Thought insertion
- Klein, Mélanie (1946). "Notes on some schizoid mechanisms". Envy and gratitude and other works 1946-1963. Hogarth Press and the Institute of Psycho-Analysis (published 1975). ISBN 978-0-02-918440-0.
- Klein, Melanie (1946). "Notes on Some Schizoid Mechanisms". J. Psycho-Anal. 27: 99–110.
- Neville Symington, Narcissism: A New Theory (1993) p. xv
- Donald Meltzer, The Kleinian Development (2008) p. 180
- D. Meltzer et al, Exploring the Work of Donald Meltzer (2011) p. 120
- S. Freud, On Psychopathology (PFL 10) p. 200-1
- O. Fenichel, The Psychoanalytic Theory of Neurosis (1946) p. 428
- D. Cooper, The Death of the Family (1974) p. 11
- R. Skinner/J. Cleese, Families and how to survive them (1994) p. 106
- J. Segal, Melanie Klein (2001) p. 26
- R. Anderson ed., Clinical Lectures on Klein and Bion (1992) p. 49
- Waska, Robert (2010). Treating Severe Depressive and Persecutory Anxiety States: To Transform the Unbearable. Karnac Books. ISBN 978-1855757202.
- E. Berne, A Layman's Guide to Psychiatry and Psychoanalysis (1976) p. 239
- R. Gregory ed, The Oxford Companion to the Mind (1987) p. 577
- Meltzer et al, p. 176-7
- On the Dynamics of Social Structure : A Contribution to the Psycho-Analytical Study of Social Phenomena article has discussions of defenses. See headings: defenses against paranoid anxiety and defenses against depressive anxiety.