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kathryn

You're Too Smart for Therapy

Wrote this short article for Self-Knowledge Daily. Find the audio version here and the original post here. Let me know what yall think!  :)

 

You’re Too Smart For Therapy

 

Do you have issues in your life you may need help working through? Are you an intelligent person with ambition, but lack motivation? Have you done lots of research on self-development, listened to hours of podcasts on psychology, and heard recommendations to go to therapy, but still aren’t going? You may be too smart for therapy.

 

This happens in other fields as well. For example, my father was a doctor and a brilliant man. He contributed to medicine in a lasting way; in fact, had he lived, I think he would have won a Nobel Prize. And though this man was a well-respected physician and researcher, you know what he was terrible at? Going to the doctor himself.

 

If you are reading this article, and other articles through Self-Knowledge Daily, you probably know a lot about psychology. You might even know more than a therapist, but it’s not just credentials and knowledge a therapist can provide. It’s perspective.

 

My father didn’t go a to a doctor for over 10 years, until he had to be rushed to the emergency room for renal failure. Fluid secretions had been pooling in his stomach for over a year. Dad had noticed his abdomen was growing, but he diagnosed it as weight gain. He said later he had assumed the belly pouch was just what happened when you got older. So, instead of going to the doctor, he went on a diet. This just made him weaker.

 

He had a preconceived notion about himself: he was prone to weight gain, so this was just his body. Had he gotten the perspective of another physician, even a physician that wasn’t as good of a doctor as him, he might still be alive today.

 

Another doctor could have noticed what dad was too close to see, and that’s what I understand therapy to be: a fresh perspective. A therapist is a collaborator, a mirror, and an advocate for you. Self-therapy can be wonderful, but it’s difficult to see yourself the way another can see you.

 

Most importantly, when you are on your own, your progress is slower. You aren’t going to live forever. If anything can help you live a better life now, why would you delay? My dad was suffering for a year before he sought help, with something a physician could have noticed and treated quickly. One-on-one therapy is more efficient than going it alone.

 

You might very well be smarter than all the therapists in the world, but that doesn’t mean they don’t have something to offer you. Life is short, get the help you need and deserve now.

 
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Thanks for sharing this!

 

Ultimately I would say the goal of therapy is to not need a therapist, but I think I should amend that to "not need a therapist as much". There are still plenty of reasons to have a therapist even after lots of work with one. 

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This is a good post.

 

But besides the money issue, I don't feel like going to therapy at all.

I am fed up of trusting someone else with my history and my emotions and for them to not be taken seriously.

I'm just fed up of trying to find a therapist who doesn't blame me for the negative feelings I might have towards my parents or one who remains "neutral" in the face of my despair.

 

This is the experience I had with counselling and I'm staying away from CBT which would mainly focus on my behaviour rather than my childhood.

 

I would still try to look for the "right" therapist, but for now in the mean time the only problem to be solved I see is emotional repression, which you can do on your own. It's just harder without a therapist, but the same problem to be solved in therapy is the same problem you can solve by making the choice understand and listen to your emotions.

 

For now I don't want to go on the hunt for the "right" therapist and I feel much more comfortable dealing with my emotional repression on my own. I don't understand why that is such a problem for some people on here to be honest...

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I am fed up of trusting someone else with my history and my emotions and for them to not be taken seriously.

I'm just fed up of trying to find a therapist who doesn't blame me for the negative feelings I might have towards my parents or one who remains "neutral" in the face of my despair.

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.

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Doesn't this all hinge on the unquestioned assumption that a person does, in fact, need a therapist? Does everyone who has personal issues need a therapist? Is someone's choice not to have a therapist simply a matter of them thinking they are "too smart for it"? 

That you would even consider the possibility that there is anyone that does not need a therapist is incontrovertible proof that you need therapy.

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Doesn't this all hinge on the unquestioned assumption that a person does, in fact, need a therapist? Does everyone who has personal issues need a therapist? Is someone's choice not to have a therapist simply a matter of them thinking they are "too smart for it"? 

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.

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That you would even consider the possibility that there is anyone that does not need a therapist is incontrovertible proof that you need therapy.

If you are the person who negged my post for suggesting one needs a therapist for thinking there is anyone that doesn't need a therapist, you need a therapist, and perhaps a tutor in reading comprehension, humor, and irony. (Wondering if I'll get another "neg" for this post too.  :thumbsup: ).

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If you are the person who negged my post for suggesting one needs a therapist for thinking there is anyone that doesn't need a therapist, you need a therapist, and perhaps a tutor in reading comprehension, humor, and irony. (Wondering if I'll get another "neg" for this post too.  :thumbsup: ).

 

I think the neg was for the approach that you used, regardless of the truth of your statement. I found myself not liking how you said what you said either.

 

I think that everyone can benefit from therapy. Maybe someone doesn't need it to grow, but it really truly accelerates things. With a good therapist, it the difference between making a 10000 mile trip walking versus on a bicycle or faster vehicle.

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I think the neg was for the approach that you used, regardless of the truth of your statement. I found myself not liking how you said what you said either.

 

I think that everyone can benefit from therapy. Maybe someone doesn't need it to grow, but it really truly accelerates things. With a good therapist, it the difference between making a 10000 mile trip walking versus on a bicycle or faster vehicle.

 

As someone who has benefited from therapy myself, I am not at all meaning to be disparaging of therapy or the use of a therapist, especially if one has undergone significant abuse or other trauma, and I apologize if I inadvertently conveyed that message. It was intended more as a sarcastic commentary on the self-serving state of the medical community in over prescribing therapy and medication for things which not long ago people easily and successfully worked out on their own, or with a sympathetic friend or family member. I agree that likely everyone can benefit from therapy administered by a skilled therapist (or in some cases, a skilled non-therapist such as an experienced bartender, minister, life coach, mentor, or friend), especially to assist them in coming to terms with, if not in fact resolving the traumas in their lives.

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That's not quite the same thing as needing a therapist. Lots of people have issues in their lives they may need help working through. As hinted at by EclecticIdealist's post above, I think this can potentially be done with friends and family, or even through more personal therapeutic methods. I don't think it's a given that one absolutely needs a therapist. The reason for my skepticism is that I percieve the article of the OP as too aggressively, and perhaps with bias, pushing for therapy. Maybe one could benefit from therapy. But I don't take it as a given that everyone has the kind of personal trauma that might merit therapy, or necessarily that a therapist is the only right answer to someone who does have such personal trauma. Likewise, I am skeptical toward the tendency of the field of psychiatry to have a convenient relationship with the pharmaceutical industry. I most certainly think our society is over-drugged.

 

It seems a little odd to me to see "you need therapy" pushed as a given without taking individual's situations into account. And especially for people working in the field itself to need to so aggressively try to justify the idea that you need them. 

 

Daniel Mackler wrote some essays regarding the differences between the therapeutic relationship and other relationships, such as friendships and parental relationships. It's worth a read if you're interested how they might be different.

 

http://wildtruth.net/three-differences-between-therapy-friendship/

http://wildtruth.net/three-differences-between-therapists-parents/

 

I think that everyone here in this thread would recommend avoiding therapists who prescribe psychiatric medications and drug their clients.

 

This is a self-knowledge section of the forum. To not talk about therapy is like discussing how to cook without the use of a stove, but I agree that it's very easy to push and pressure people into seeking it. I know for me, and I think that this speaks for everyone here as well (if I am wrong, then please speak up), that we all have received tremendous benefits in our lives due to seeking therapy. It's like being dehydrated all of your life and then discovering drinking water.

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It seems a little odd to me to see "you need therapy" pushed as a given without taking individual's situations into account.

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.

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That's not quite the same thing as needing a therapist. Lots of people have issues in their lives they may need help working through. As hinted at by EclecticIdealist's post above, I think this can potentially be done with friends and family, or even through more personal therapeutic methods. I don't think it's a given that one absolutely needs a therapist. The reason for my skepticism is that I percieve the article of the OP as too aggressively, and perhaps with bias, pushing for therapy. Maybe one could benefit from therapy. But I don't take it as a given that everyone has the kind of personal trauma that might merit therapy, or necessarily that a therapist is the only right answer to someone who does have such personal trauma. Likewise, I am skeptical toward the tendency of the field of psychiatry to have a convenient relationship with the pharmaceutical industry. I most certainly think our society is over-drugged.

 

It seems a little odd to me to see "you need therapy" pushed as a given without taking individual's situations into account. And especially for people working in the field itself to need to so aggressively try to justify the idea that you need them. 

 

No one "needs" therapy. The only things you need to do in life is basic bodily functions like breathing and eventually dying. I think there are good arguments for how therapy can help a person thrive rather than just survive, but it is ultimately up to the individual to make the choice. If you are doing well working on your own with your personal development efforts, awesome! Keep doing it. This article was for those who are still struggling.

 

I 100% agree with you about psychiatry and the pharmaceutical industry. If a therapist "strongly recommends" drugs, I generally take that as a red flag and would stay away. 

 

You can definitely make therapeutic progress through close relationships with friends and family, but many people don't have that option. Especially the ones who grew up in dysfunctional and abusive families, in which case it's often healthier and more therapeutic to distance yourself from those people. 

 

Additionally, using friends as therapists for the long term may put undue stress on a relationship. Boundary issues may come up, and feelings could easily be hurt unless you are consistently reciprocating in some way. I also think that friends and family members are often too close to help. It can be difficult for a loved one to see you in pain. They will want to offer solutions and make you feel better, where a therapist could be more objective and let you feel the pain

 

It can get complicated, and I think it's simpler with a paid therapist, but I'm glad if you have people in your life who are a good support system.  :)

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First of all to the OP, that is a remarkably good post. I hadn't considered looking at it in that way. I'm sorry to hear about losing your father, but you have reasoned that whole situation into a teachable moment that could benefit many people. Pure psychological alchemical gold imho.

 

I have had therapy for many years, and I am really reluctant to admit this but I am supposed to be very intelligent (at least two standard deviations above the mean in IQ). However I have this real emotional block involving feeling superior to people. I strive towards egalitarian relationships in my personal life, yet I hold myself back considerably in almost every other way except socially and with regards to raising my son (I refuse to be anything less than the best for him, and I am always working on ways to get better).

 

At this point I am eyeing up diving into psychotherapy, and whilst I find the idea somewhat scary I think it may be the way foward for me.

 

Thank you for taking the time to write that post!

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Doesn't this all hinge on the unquestioned assumption that a person does, in fact, need a therapist? Does everyone who has personal issues need a therapist? Is someone's choice not to have a therapist simply a matter of them thinking they are "too smart for it"? 

There is an assumption that therapy is always beneficial. The conclusion is contained in the premise.

 

In other words, OP is begging the question.

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I think there is a misunderstanding about the argument contained in Kathryn's post that is being repeated. It's perfectly fine to misunderstand something for whatever reason, but as new evidence is being presented, it is not just to simply repeat the initial misunderstanding as if no attempt to clarify Kathryn's position was made.

 

Kathryn is making an argument that therapy can be beneficial even if the patient is smarter or more well informed than their therapist. This wouldn't be true in many other disciplines, because of the nature of the professional relationship. If you were a world renowned investor, there would be absolutely nothing to gain from a simply above average investor. If you were one of the best economists in the world, again, there is absolutely nothing you would gain from an above average economist.

 

But on the other hand, even if you were a fantastic doctor or psychologist, there is benefit in seeking an objective third party doctor or psychologist, even if they were generally less informed or intelligent than you. This is because the subject of observation in these disciplines, unlike economics or investing, is the self. Even if you were the best psychologist in the world or had read plenty of books on the subject, what you would always lack is the ability to step outside of your own internal experience and observe yourself objectively. 

 

It is incorrect to say this point includes the premise that therapy is always beneficial. The entire point of the article in my opinion is to make clear what particular reasons are invalid to claim therapy from an objective third party, as opposed to self therapy, is not potentially beneficial.

 

No one can guarantee therapy will be useful for anyone, but it stands to reason that since it is part of a professional discipline with about a hundred years of research behind it, that it is appropriate to discuss the nature of its benefits for some people.

 

For the same reasons it would be inappropriate in most if not all cases to receive medical attention from your non-doctor neighbor, it would be likewise inappropriate to receive therapeutic psychotherapy from a non-therapist neighbor, family member, or friend. There is a reason therapy is a specialized profession: not anyone can be a therapist, and not all relationships are capable of that level of objectivity.

 

Before anyone is going to repeat the assertion that anywhere in this article is the premise "every must go to therapy" or "therapy is good for everyone at all times," they should respond to one of the three attempts to clarify, or else for them to post on a forum is pointless.

 

For what it's worth, I thought Kathryn made this all clear as could be expected, but maybe I'm taking for granted a point I was already mostly aware of, though she did make it extra spiffy :) 

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There is an assumption that therapy is always beneficial. The conclusion is contained in the premise.

 

In other words, OP is begging the question.

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.

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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.

Could therapy produce negative effects?

 

I don't see where this was addressed in post #14.

 

Consider if the doctor in OP's example had gone to another doctor and been misdiagnosed as having gained weight. There is another assumption that this outside perspective is beneficial, when it could have produced the same outcome.

 

 

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Could therapy produce negative effects?

 

I don't see where this was addressed in post #14.

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.

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Consider if the doctor in OP's example had gone to another doctor and been misdiagnosed as having gained weight. There is another assumption that this outside perspective is beneficial, when it could have produced the same outcome.

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.

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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.

OP is stating that people are better off seeing a therapist rather than self-therapy alone.

 

If someone were in fact better off with self therapy, then a therapist could have negative effects.

 

I fully understand that OP is encouraging people to seek therapy; she is doing so under the assumption that seeking therapy is beneficial.

If it were not beneficial, she would not encourage it.

 

"Don't refrain from seeking therapy because therapists can do things for you that you cannot do for yourself or through conversations with friends in family."

 

This is the summation of her claim, and I don't see evidence to support it.

 

 

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"Don't refrain from seeking therapy because therapists can do things for you that you cannot do for yourself or through conversations with friends in family."

 

This is the summation of her claim, and I don't see evidence to support it.

"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.

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It is incorrect to say this point includes the premise that therapy is always beneficial. The entire point of the article in my opinion is to make clear what particular reasons are invalid to claim therapy from an objective third party, as opposed to self therapy, is not potentially beneficial.

 

 

In case I helped make things more confusing here, I wanted to confess I'm not sure self-therapy is even a valid term. Since therapy is an institution where a professionally trained individual is paid to help benefit the mental health of their client, I'm not sure how this could possibly be replicated on one's own. I think introspection is a better term for what is often called self-therapy. I also have a tough time imagining how the more intense emotional breakthroughs that happen in therapy could be replicated on one's own. In that sense, the delicacy and expertise required to further these breakthroughs makes self therapy analogous to the impracticality of self surgery.

 

And with regards to what a friend or family member could provide: this has already been addressed in post #14. Those who are considering therapy and are feeling poorly probably wouldn't be in the position they were if the people around them could perform the healthy and supporting roles they needed. Even if they could, it might not still be comparable to the attention and expertise a therapist could provide.

 

Hopefully that makes my thoughts more clear, whether I'm right or wrong. 

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The problem with the proposition is that effectiveness and efficacy can't be measured when it comes to therapy. To determine them you would have either to conduct long term studies with clients. Looking at those it seems that classical therapeutic approaches don't produce lasting changes in the enviroment and personal well being than was previously thought. In addition, doing double experiments to weed out bad therapeutic approaches isn't possible. 

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The problem with the proposition is that effectiveness and efficacy can't be measured when it comes to therapy.

Where's you pull this out of? Your butt?

 

Yes, they can. Here's Stef interviewing a researcher who looks into exactly this:

 

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Okay, 'kay! Here's the thing........

Many, many years ago, I suffered a trauma that seemed to embody all the difficulties and frustrations that I had endured in my life to that point. I was in some state of shock. I tried getting some "professional" help. Unfortunately, this was the time when a psychology degree didn't get nor deserve much respect ... much like the sociology spin-offs today, thus I was compelled to go it alone.

I took about a year-and-a-half to work my problems through. I had lots of issues to sort through. I'll spare you the details and jump to the conclusions:

1. The world is a most wonderful place full of things to do and discover.
 
2. Social inventions restrict choices by conditioning people to comply with established memes and preferred behaviors. Worse, society defines right and wrong, self image, goals, compliance, etc. Worsest, social conditioning dictates the emotion to evoke when something "improper" occurs. People comply because of sloth, ignorance, conditioning, and irresponsibility. A friend of mine defined this as "Lack of scope".

3. Self-destructive emotions hate, anger, embarrassment, fear, panic, offense, apathy, etc. These feelings must not persist but must extinguish quickly.

4. The ability to approach problems with a good sense of humor is necessary.

5. One must be free from the foibles of friends and family past and present.

6. One must look at the new day without prejudice, but rather as a bit of drudge and a new adventure.
 
7. Consider that the mind-mender from whom you might seek help is under the same social conditioning that's causing your problem, and most likely cure you with compliance!

8. Lastly, from an old NatLamp allegory: "Disgusting is in the mind of the beholder".

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Where's you pull this out of? Your butt?

 

I had a look at studies that compared the effectiveness when it comes to psychological problems. I suggest you do the same.

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I had a look at studies that compared the effectiveness when it comes to psychological problems. I suggest you do the same.

I have, a bunch. Watch the video.

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Is therapy always right for everyone in every situation? Of course not. Therapy alone isn't a cure-all, but it can be a great resource. For me, therapy has been enormously helpful, but I was also highly motivated and working a lot on my own. Because therapy is self-directed, it's usefulness depends on what you make of it. If you're not really committed, if your heart is not in it, by all means, try something else. 

 

Are there bad therapists out there? Hell yes. Just like there are some bad doctors who could misdiagnose you. Does that mean you should never go to a doctor? Hell no. You read reviews, asks lots of questions, and get a second opinion if your gut tells you something is off. 

 

Does everyone need therapy? Nope. But if there are major things in your life you are unhappy about, I don't think the notion that a therapist could help you is too outlandish. If you feel a strong resistance to it, why is that?

 

Why did my dad not go to a doctor? When he was feeling weaker and weaker and his abdomen kept growing? He thought he knew better. This pride cost him his life. 

 

Now, the stakes are a lot lower on whether or not to go to therapy. Obviously, the consequences aren't life or death if you don't go to a therapist. (Unless you are suicidal, of course.) But the reasons I've heard for not going to therapy that circle around this idea of being too smart, sound eerily like my dad. Something like: "I know what a therapist is going to tell me." or "What can a therapist do for me that I can't do for myself?" or "Therapy is just ____. I just need to do ____." 

 

I think a therapist can tell you something you don't know, offer a fresh perspective, and be someone to hold you accountable for your actions. They can help you see connections and patterns in your life that you are too close to see. Their eyes, not necessarily their smarts, can be invaluable.

 

Does that mean you should go to therapy? I don't know. It depends on your needs, goals, and life situation. Worked well for me, though.  :)

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A therapist is a collaborator, a mirror, and an advocate for you. Self-therapy can be wonderful, but it’s difficult to see yourself the way another can see you. [...]

 

Most importantly, when you are on your own, your progress is slower. 

 

The biggest problem is : it should be an advocate, and a collaborator. But a mirror ? What is the purpose of a mirror ? To reflect which part of you, based on which judgement ? Should a therapy be judgemental on you and your behavior, instead of understanding you ? And what if the judgement is made based on therapist's own traumas ? Who is better to have the right perspective on you ? I don't think that having new perspectives on yourself, made by the judgement of another person is right. Ok, you might think you are smarter, and realise later that wasn't the real problem. But you won't necessarily achieve faster to realise this with someone else telling it to you.

 

Where do you learned that you go faster on healing with someone else, than alone ? In my opinion, it might be true, only if the therapist is really trying to be on your side and understand you instead of applying his theories on you. Unfortunately, I never met any therapist that was really working that way. I saw judgement, comparisons with their theories while I was talking, and now I am very agree with what myclippedwings say :

 

This is a good post.

 

But besides the money issue, I don't feel like going to therapy at all.

I am fed up of trusting someone else with my history and my emotions and for them to not be taken seriously.

I'm just fed up of trying to find a therapist who doesn't blame me for the negative feelings I might have towards my parents or one who remains "neutral" in the face of my despair.

 

This is the experience I had with counselling and I'm staying away from CBT which would mainly focus on my behaviour rather than my childhood.

 

I would still try to look for the "right" therapist, but for now in the mean time the only problem to be solved I see is emotional repression, which you can do on your own. It's just harder without a therapist, but the same problem to be solved in therapy is the same problem you can solve by making the choice understand and listen to your emotions.

 

For now I don't want to go on the hunt for the "right" therapist and I feel much more comfortable dealing with my emotional repression on my own. I don't understand why that is such a problem for some people on here to be honest...

 

100 % agreed with you ! Even a several primal therapist I saw, supposed to focus on your childhood and not being neutral, they've read Alice Miller, Janov...behaved with me in order to make me fit with their theories.

 

Where's you pull this out of? Your butt?

 

Yes, they can. Here's Stef interviewing a researcher who looks into exactly this:

 

 

Well, it can be better if it comes from your own butt, than from other's head sometimes. Effectiveness of therapy cannot be judged by someone else than you. And there a lot of people mixing up happiness and recovery. There are also a lot of people that feel relieved from symptoms, without being cured at all, and will reproduce their repressed emotions on their children. There are toxic people saying they are happy. There are patient running away from feeling their buried emotions, dissociating and thinking they are cured, cause they increased dissociation, and don't feel anything anymore. 

 

For me, I don't need a smart (high IQ or psychology culture) therapist but a emotionnally smart therapist (empathetic, curious, open, not judgemental), but, I start to believe it's a fantasy of the little baby in me that need a perfect parent, and no therapist can be that perfect parent. So I do the job alone, and it works well, and I don't care about the speed of my healing as I'm not in charge of children, there is no urge for me to be perfect.

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