Sigmund Freud's theories are known to be highly controversial, and one that interests me the most is the Oedipus complex. Oedipus complex is termed after the tragic Greek character who unknowingly killed his father and married his mother. It describes the conflict in boys which they supposedly love their mothers romantically and want to eliminate their fathers as rivals. I actually found this claim outrageous, so I decided to look for real-life case studies related to the Oedipus complex.
While I did not find any recent and updated examples, I found that Sigmund Frued himself actually published a case study in 1909 called Analysis of a Phobia in a Five-year-old Boy. The subject was called Herbert Graf, known in the study as "Little Hans." The case study began when his father sent Freud reports about Hans' interest in sexual matters. According to the father, he had an immense fear of horses for the fear of getting bitten by them. Also, he showed interest in his genitals and other people's genitals. Freud provided an explanation to this phobia saying that the phobia arose from the fact that Hans was struggling with the oedipal conflict. Hans' father being an obstacle to his sexual attractions to his mother, as well as the fear cause by the large penises of horses, gave rise to his castration anxiety and the fear of getting punished.
This case study interests me because I found that Freud violated a few laws of critical thinking. Firstly, Hans was only one of the billions of five-year-olds all over the world. Freud only studied one subject, so he would have to replicate his findings before he can conclude that Han's phobia was caused by the Oedipus complex. Secondly, Han's fear of horses and his interest of his or other people's genitals could have stemmed from two different things. Freud concluded that both were caused by Oedipus complex without ruling out other hypothesis. Moreover, Freud's theory is impossible to refute. For example, if people were to find evidence that most five-year-old boys were sexually repulsed by their mothers, this observation would refute the existence of the Oedipus complex. But Freud could respond by saying that the boys are merely engaging in reaction-formation and are attracted to their mothers at an unconscious level. These violations to the laws of critical thinking make me doubt the truthfulness of the theory, and I am sure it also raised a lot of other people's doubts as well. This probably explains why the Oedipus complex was highly criticized around the world.
I only provided a cut-down version of Freud's case study. Here is an extended version: http://www.garysturt.free-online.co.uk/freud.htm