Lipton’s Journal/January 27, 1955/315

From Project Mailer

As was evident in the notes yesterday, I was moving toward a depression, and it came on me during the evening. I felt very tired, and rather disgusted with myself. It seemed to me as if I’d been indulging in mental masturbation for quite a few days, playing word games, playing at being a genius, playing at being at the edge of the psychotic, and I noted that the letter which was to accompany some notes I was sending to Bob[1] which I had half-consciously written almost psychotically had been left out of the envelope. I was going to throw it away (crumple it into a ball), and then changed my mind and just stuck it is with carbons of old letters. I felt disgusted at harassing Bob like that, swindling him into giving a free analysis, not directly of course, but still drawing him in. What preceded the depression were some half-realizations of a very personal sort about my sister and Adele,[2] and I suppose I drew back from them.



notes

  1. A prominent Baltimore psychoanalyst and writer, Robert Lindner (1914-56) became acquainted with Mailer after reading Lindner’s 1952 sharp critique of current psychoanalytic practice, Prescription for Rebellion (1952), published by NM’s publisher, Rinehart. The letter, which contained both praise and criticism for Lindner’s ideas, led to a close friendship over the next four years, including many visits and the sharing of work, including “Lipton’s.” See extended note on entry 56.
  2. Adele Morales (1925-2015), who he married in April 1954, was Mailer’s second wife. The mother of his daughters Danielle (b.1957), and Elizabeth Anne (b. 1959), she separated from Mailer in early 1961 a few months after he stabbed her with a penknife, just missing her heart. He pled guilty to felonious assault and was given a suspended sentence. They divorced in 1962.