The Perils of Understanding

And how your prejudices can help you understand better I once worked as a therapist with a deaf female client in my office by having her type what she wanted to say to me, as I typed to her. I didn’t know much sign language but was eager to show off what little I had.Continue reading “The Perils of Understanding”

Don’t Be Mindless About Mindfulness

It doesn’t have to involve meditation If you have any connection to psychotherapy or psychotherapists and have been paying attention to trends, you’ve noticed that everyone in shrinkland is talking about something called mindfulness. I don’t know if mindfulness has infiltrated everywhere else as much as it has the land of shrinkishness; but if itContinue reading “Don’t Be Mindless About Mindfulness”

Fifty Minutes Set Apart: Psychotherapy’s fraught relationship with time

When you meet with me, you and I are not alone. We share the psychotherapy session with an ordinary, unobtrusive, but tyrannical object. A clock. My relationship with the clock is a troubled one. Sometimes it’s my savior, my teammate, my partner, other times it’s my rival. It’s a valuable tool and a necessary evil.Continue reading “Fifty Minutes Set Apart: Psychotherapy’s fraught relationship with time”

Waiting Room Therapy

I used to work in a hospital emergency department. I was the guy who handled all the psychiatric emergencies. There were the suicidal people, just talked down from ledges, the homicidal people the police brought, the domestic violence people who wouldn’t settle down, the psychotic people who were trying to fly. Often the people whoContinue reading “Waiting Room Therapy”

Looking for My Father in Emerson’s Essays

I recently opened for the first time, a volume of essays by Ralph Waldo Emerson from the collection of old books in my library that I have never read. I was surprised to find that my father, whom I must’ve gotten the book from, noted on the title page that he had read it threeContinue reading “Looking for My Father in Emerson’s Essays”

Multiple Views of Dissociative Identity Disorder

There aren’t many mental illnesses that therapists are accused of creating, but dissociative identity disorder (DID), or multiple personality disorder, as it officially used to be known, is one of them. Continue reading →

Cleaning the Closet

We are certain to encounter the past. We are confronted with it if we go back to the old homestead, step in through our childhood door, and walk into our early days. We face it if we unpack memories along with the ornaments for the Christmas tree. Either we choose to spend time the past,Continue reading “Cleaning the Closet”

Do You Really Have a Choice with Your Feelings?

If you say you got pisssed off, gripped by fear, sadness overcame you, lost hope, filled with gratitude, or overwhelmed by joy; the passive voice you use about your feelings reveals a misconception of how they work. Continue reading →