The dominant theme of this post is the inter-connectivity of object relations theory, possession, social boundaries, and relationships between partners. The loss of boundaries articulated by Daniels is of particular interest to me, as personal experience has led me to examine the links between balance, within the context of a relationship, and self-perception. If an individual is constantly defining him/herself with relation to another human being, then how is self-esteem, autonomy, and an overall solid sense of well-being inform healthy boundaries? The post suggests that a loss of boundaries is tantamount to a loss of a solid sense of self, with object relations theory then having specific implications for partnerships of various kinds.
If human beings are constantly searching for relatedness, or, as the post states, "attachments that allow for emotional bonding with others," then that search, in itself, is integral to the individual's identity. Attachments as emotional bonds are paramount to the human life, but are they paramount to self-perception in a way that negates, or at the very least trumps, personality? While the post indicates that a relationship may become similar to a possession in that the individual feels a sense of ownership over his/her partner, I believe that it is possible to be attached and bonded within a relationship without feeling a sense of possession.
The word possession connotes a power differential between the possessor and the possess-ee, through which an inherent inequality would negatively impact the relationship. Though the post implies that a balance may be possible if both partners harbor a sense of possession, I believe that any sense of ownership, even one that is equally felt by both partners, is problematic and boundary-confusing. Most saliently, it is unlikely that each partner would frame the act of possession in the same way, with one person's possession manifesting as jealousy and another's manifesting in a comparatively healthy way. Invested emotional energy neither necessarily constitutes a possession nor a blurred boundary, though it has the potential to be both given the right circumstances.
The post highlights further that certain circumstances during early childhood will determine both boundary-loss and the negative effects of object-possession later in life. Unconscious conflicts in the absence of treatment, by extension, shape adult experiences when individuals seek to repair childhood losses of objects; this implies that the adult is constantly seeking out self-validation only through relationships with others, however. I believe that strong senses of self-identity need not be derived solely from relationships but can be garnered from a wide spectrum of sources. If an artist, for example, seeks and finds a sense of self during the act of creation, then it is his/her relationship with his/her work that sources a strong sense of core being-ness; and yet, this raises further questions about object relations, as the artist's work may then be the object from which s/he derives identity. A core difference between the post's explanation of intimate relationships and the variables of possession and self-identity and the artist example, however, is that a power differential already exists between artist and artwork, with the former not only wielding greater autonomy than the latter but also responsible for its entire existence.