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Western Civilization’s Last Stand

The Art of The Argument

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Kevin Beal

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Kevin Beal last won the day on December 2

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About Kevin Beal

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  1. How to Find a Great Therapist

    My beautiful amazing wife wrote a book that many could benefit from reading. Several people from the community were involved. Phil Johnston designed the cover. Cheryl Hulseapple edited the book. And several others helped by reading and providing useful feedback in the writing process. Thank you so much to those involved! Amazon wouldn't let me post my review of the book, on account of being the author's husband, but I thought I would share it here: Get the book here for $0.99! On a personal note, to you, from me. I've had a lot of conversations with people about therapy over the years, as a member of the boards. There are a lot of legitimate questions and reservations people have around therapy. I've noticed too that many people have had an attitude of "I know I probably should, but eh..." and don't get around to it. Let this book help you make that decision. It doesn't feel good to be conflicted about this. Or to know that you should try it, but don't act. I doubt I would be blissfully married, have a great career I am very motivated in, and be expecting a child of my own at the end of the year if I hadn't got into therapy. I would probably still be unemployed/underemployed, depressed and anxious all the time, not living my values, and playing video games every day. I don't know for sure where I would have ended up, but it scares me to think about. Plus, cool book cover, right?
  2. Online Therapy

    I'd caution against Steven Franssen.
  3. To find yourself attractive

    I became much more confident after I got some experience with women. I don't think that anything beats experience. You have to know that you are high-quality man stuff that women would totally want if they only knew what you knew. I am not convinced that there is any way to fake it. Women will pick up on that, or at least, the kind of sensitive beauty that you should want will notice this. How do you get that confidence? I'm not convinced there is any other way than getting experience with women. And if you lack quality experience, then you have to get it somehow. Spending time with women outside of a dating context may help.
  4. Anyone else from SLC, Utah?

    Not me, but welcome!
  5. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    I have, a bunch. Watch the video.
  6. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    Where's you pull this out of? Your butt? Yes, they can. Here's Stef interviewing a researcher who looks into exactly this:
  7. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    "I don't need therapy because I'm as smart or smarter than a therapist" is shown to be specious by use of analogy. Insofar as the doctor's visit analogy also describes therapy, not going to therapy based on that logic is as irrational as not going to a doctor based on the same logic. Since we can show that therapy can be beneficial even in this counterintuitive case, it is cause to take it seriously in other cases as well. In other words, if you are not as smart or as capable as a therapist when it comes to effective mental health, then that is more cause to consider therapy. The argument in the article does nothing to preclude the possibility of getting help from friends or family. She even says it explicitly in her next post that they can play a role. You said she begged the question. (You were mistaken, and guilty of this yourself.) You said that she said it was always beneficial. (You were mistaken.) You said that she said it was never negative. (You were mistaken.) You repeatedly mischaracterized the article. Slow down a sec, guy. And please acknowledge that you were mistaken. I'm doing all the heavy lifting here.
  8. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    Insofar as the doctor is a good doctor – insofar as the doctor best exemplifies what it means to be a doctor, then it is beneficial in the sense that good medicine is beneficial. If the doctor is a bad doctor, then that's a different issue. The point is good medicine, not particular doctors. If you asked the OP if she thought seeing a bad therapist (who leads you in the wrong direction) was a good idea, do you imagine that she would say "yes"? You're talking about something other than what the article is about.
  9. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    You said that the implication was that it was "always beneficial." The article is just one example of how it can be beneficial in a way you might not have thought. Saying that this implies that it's always beneficial is like saying that you must think that there are zero downsides / tradeoffs of having a stateless society if you think it's superior even in cases of dispute resolution. Or like I must think exercise is always beneficial, without exception simply because it's an answer for so many things. Why does it need explaining that therapy is not always and forever the answer? Everybody here, so far, is clear that it's not a fix-all. Who are you saving? Is it not too obvious to mention? ------------------ But, to answer your question, in post #14, she provided a case where other options might be better (i.e. other sources of support), and where it can be harmful (i.e. pushing medication). The whole post is about clarifying what the value is and isn't. I don't get the sense that you are actually reading things very closely. Answers to your questions / challenges are available only a few scrolls up the page. I'd rather not do your work for you. ----------------------- This is a follow-up article. More information about what the value or therapy is can be found here.
  10. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    No such assumption was made. She never said that it was always beneficial. (See post #14). You assumed that this was the conclusion of the argument, and from there concluded that there was circular reasoning. You are the one begging the question. Projection is a psychological defense mechanism where you deny something about yourself by attributing that quality to somebody else, especially where that attribute shows up in yourself when you make the accusation. This could have happened to you in the moment. Something to keep in mind. If you need help, you might want to consider professional help from a trained therapist, even if you are very knowledgeable about psychology and the topics that would be brought up in therapy. It's not complicated.
  11. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    That's why it's an article and not a conversation with a particular person. It's supposed to apply as a generality in order to be helpful to a wider audience. If we accept that you need help to work on your mental health and well-being, and we accept that a therapist is someone who is professionally trained to help with exactly that, then it stands to reason that therapy is what would be discussed. "Therapy isn't a cure-all and isn't necessary for every person's situation" seems too obvious a conclusion to even mention, to me, but maybe I'm like super smart or something. Maybe it does need to be qualified for people who would take it as "everyone must go to therapy." Maybe some people are that naive.
  12. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    The very first sentence asks "Do you have issues in your life you may need help working through?" So, yes. It does establish this as the very first premise.
  13. You're Too Smart for Therapy

    I'm sorry about the poor therapists. I get that this would be disheartening. There are a lot of bad programmers out there, but some endeavours require getting yourself a programmer. This applies generally, in most professions. If you need a therapist, then you need a therapist; and the presence of bad ones means that you have to filter those ones out somehow. How are you going about finding a good therapist and avoiding bad ones? If I go to a high school to contract out a software deal, then I'm unlikely to get high-quality code. If I were to do that, then it would make little sense for me to say that finding good programmers is not worth the effort. If you really wanted quality therapy, you would find a way to make it happen. Good therapists aren't mythical. They don't hide away in magic concealed institutions like wizards. As far as the money thing goes, I was (basically) unemployed when I started therapy. I thought it was incredibly important for me to go into therapy, so I made it work. I was couch surfing, finding odd jobs where I could, and as soon as I could pay for food and other very basic things, I spent the rest on therapy. Maybe it's not meaningful for me to say, but I just don't buy these two excuses: they cost too much & there are lots of low-quality ones. Those are two relatively small hurdles. And obviously, you don't have to go, I'm just saying that I think those are not the best reasons in the world. --------------------- Also, my own therapy had a lot to do with repressed emotions, but it was far from the only part of therapy. You'd think that a century and a half of scientific work and hundreds of years of work in the philosophy of mind would produce more than "you just need to stop repressing your emotions and you'll be okay." You don't have to do CBT. You could find yourself a good Coherence therapist, or a Jungian. There are options out there if you look.
  14. The futility of impersonal debate.

    Well, it can be an attack in the same sense that bullets ricochet off of superman's chest. I'm just saying that people bear some responsibility for managing their own shame and making themselves resilient in the face of antagonists online (within reason). The danger I see is the whole "I'm triggered" SJW thing. They are the extreme form of externalizing, granted, but if that virus were to infect the boards, I would be disappointed, to say the least. Maybe I'm beating a dead horse. It feels important to me, as you can tell. Thanks! I appreciate it
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