In context (Phillips):
‘What is most difficult to resolve and cure,’ the psychoanalyst Masud Khan wrote in The Privacy of the Self, ‘is the patient’s practice of self-cure. To cure a cure is the paradox that faces us . . .’ Symptoms are always a form of self-cure; you first hear about your problem from your proposed solutions to it. The alcoholic is suffering from whatever conflict alcohol was initially a solution to, and then the solution becomes the problem. The real question is not, how can someone stop drinking, but rather what was the alcohol a self-cure for in the first case?