This section is from the book "Melting Armour: Some Notes On Self-Help Reichian Therapy", by William West. Also available from Amazon: Melting Armour: Some Notes On Self-Help Reichian Therapy.
In fact, handling feelings that arise between therapist and client are the key to successful therapy. These consist of both present day feelings and also the triggering of past feelings. Chapter VI, on The Handling of the Transference, in Reich's book "Character Analysis is an excellent read on the importance of correct handling of transference in therapy:-"In the course of the analysis, the patient 'transfers' to the analyst infantile attitudes which undergo manifold transformations and fulfill definite functions. The handling of these transferred attitudes creates a problem for the analyst. The patient's relationship to the analyst is of both a positive and negative nature. The analyst has to reckon with ambivalence of feelings and, above all, to bear in mind that sooner or later every form of transference becomes a resistance, which the patient himself/herself is not in a position to resolve."
18) It helps to have someone or even a group with which to discuss therapeutic problems that can arise,—also to be counselled about one's feelings and thoughts on the progress of therapy with regular clients. Reading Reich's description of therapy with his clients is a great help, likewise Baker and other therapists, Reichians or otherwise.
19) Timing. A regular place and time is good and useful as people seem to get into a rhythm, e.g. once a week for one hour is good. Sometimes a client might need more frequent therapy, especially when something arises that takes several sessions to resolve. Decide how flexible you are prepared to be and discuss it with your client.
Working regularly gives one time to mull over what's happening in the therapy, and it seems to enable your unconscious to cue up the material, i.e. you come ready to work with a session's worth of material close to hand.
"How can I loosen their neck, and what does it mean?" Again reading Reich's description of therapy helps and his chapter on the segments in Character Analysis is a great source of problem solving material. It's handy to read it through prior to a session.
20) Therapy brings changes. Clients often become dissatisfied with their existing relationships, with work, etc. situations which may well resist their attempts to change. They will need support and encouragement to change old relationships and to form new ones if necessary. The once a week therapy sessions need the back up of supportive human relationships if the therapy is to progress well. So dependence on the therapist for total emotional support is unhealthy and insufficient to meet the client's need and a transference problem could well arise at this point.
21) Ending a therapeutic relationship. Hopefully it can be done by mutual consent and without bitterness. There's no particular way of timing therapy other than becoming a genital character or some intermediate goal set by your client. Otherwise end therapy with a particular person when you aren't getting anything out of it anymore, though patience on the part of the therapist is necessary and one should look at the client's view of the situation. Also beware of whether you or your client are stuck in a defensive position. Occasional therapy weekends and odd sessions with other therapists can loosen up a stuck therapy position.
22) Therapy does not proceed smoothly in easy steps from start to finish. It often begins with a burst of optimism and progress and inevitably there is a setback and some disillusion before hopefully a more realistic position is achieved. It's often a case of two steps forward and one step back as old defences are reactivated when a new looseness cannot be handled. People often feel great for a day or two after therapy and gradually tighten up again as the next session approaches. Also before each breakthrough is achieved anxiety has to be faced and it helps if the therapist validates such feelings. Anyway these signal usually a very effective session.
23) Notice if your client is only discharging certain feelings and not others. In which case they may be using one feeling to ward off another feeling. Also check out if you are blocking their discharge of certain feelings. However, on the other hand, don't impose your idea of what their discharge should be. You might be right but they might well need to still carry on as they are for a while. Discharge should also follow Reich's Orgasm Cycle i.e. it should have a definite climax, so watch if they are making a sound which they prevent from peaking.
24) Through your own therapy explore your blind spots. Check out what feelings you find it difficult to get into and thus whether you act to block your client getting into the same, e.g. your blocking of tears will often block their tears. Having sexually and emotionally satisfying relationships of your own will make transference and counter transference easier to handle and will help you to support them when they are working on sexual and emotional hassles.
29) Finally use your common sense and intuition in preference to technique. Don't expect to solve all their problems for them, it's much better anyway if they come across a solution themselves, perhaps with your help. Be ready for feelings of mistrust and anger against you to arise from them, and try not to be thrown by them, the chances are that they will be transference, or at least partially so. And you can't be perfect all the time.
25) Think about how much to feedback verbally to them. Avoid playing the clever therapist but do look for character traits and point them out to your client—i.e. their rigid ways of responding defensively against the world and against feelings. Try and react creatively and humorously to such defences. Getting your client to laugh will make them relax and be less defensive. Be understanding about such defences which were set up when your client had no choice (often in early childhood).
26) Watch for movements in their body especially those involving the hands. Draw their attention to them and see what comes of it, encourage them to let it happen and let it grow, perhaps using Gestalt if applicable, e.g. "What does your hand want to do?" "What would it say if it could talk?" etc.
27) When things start to happen, move into any useful techniques that you know where it seems applicable, e.g. Gestalt, birthing, co-counselling, etc. but return to the Reichian approach afterwards. And don't be afraid to use your intuition—it's so often right!
28) Remember that your client doesn't have to do it all in one session. Let things ripen. Find your client's pace of working and respect it. Don't force your pace on them, though do challenge them if you sense they are holding back.
In Reichian therapy we are looking for involuntary discharge, for involuntary movement in the body, for people to really let go, to give in, to surrender to their body and the energy flow within it. This aid of reaching the involuntary level involves the client losing control, control of the therapy session.
Reichian therapy is also very much about orgone energy flow in the body, and while intense emotional discharge is necessary, we are also looking for a healthy energy flow as expressed in orgasm, creative work, openness and receptivity, contact with people, cosmic feelings, etc. We look for signs of energy flow in the sessions, especially after intense emotional discharge when a gentle but deep involuntary 'Reichian' breathing can occur;
"When kicking stopped and crying stopped his hand was gone and the belt inside me was gone and when I breathed out it felt like a black sailboat on a black river in the evening sailing with the current with the wake glowing and spreading out, all the way down to my knees." - Peter Reich 'A Book of Dreams' P.138
During the course of Reichian therapy specific energy effects often occur which are a sign of the progress being made: for example—colds, 24 hour flu, vomiting occasionally during a session, diarrhoea, also feeling energetic and lively, feeling really in touch, feeling very tired and lethargic, etc. Such responses can be interpreted in terms of the progress of the therapy, e.g. colds can indicate a need to cry and/or 'I need looking after while I adjust to the changes taking place inside me' or "I've never admitted before my deep need to be looked after" etc. Vomiting and diarrhoea are usually signs of anxiety and should be welcomed as a sign things are really moving(!).
At this point though your client will probably need reassuring and perhaps forewarning. Such reactions are usually shortlived especially if they are interpreted correctly, and not everybody has such responses.