"In melancholia the ego … identifies with the abandoned object. The ego becomes the poor substitute for the object.
Freud indicates that the self’s relation to the lost object before the time of incorporation ‘is complicated by the conflict of ambivalence’.
Incorporating the lost object exacerbates this ambivalence in the form of negation and lack because of the self’s initial inability to articulate or externalize the loss.
The incorporation of the lost object becomes not only a preservation of the loss but also an idealization of loss in the form of an ego-ideal.
The ego-ideal becomes the measuring stick against which the ego is judged by the super-ego. The ego can never live up to its ego-ideal."