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Sometimes We Just Need Someone to Talk to

Lovely article by a fellow therapist this week, who writes:

“What has tragically gotten lost […] is the core human need to talk to a wise, compassionate, other human being about our suffering.”

If it’s true that we’re not our brains, just popping a pill for depression won’t make the ache go away.

Click below to read Cynthia W. Lubow’s thoughtful article:

As Psychotherapy Evolves, Something Is Getting Left Behind.

 

Photo courtesy of FreeDigitalPhotos.net

About Tina Gilbertson

Tina Gilbertson is a psychotherapist, speaker and author based in Denver, Colorado.
She specializes in supporting parents of estranged adult children through therapy, consulting and other resources, and offers assertiveness training and executive coaching for organizations.
The author of “Constructive Wallowing: How to Beat Bad Feelings by Letting Yourself Have Them” and the “Guide for Parents of Estranged Adult Children,” Tina is often featured in the media as an expert on communication and relationships.
Her blog on PsychologyToday.com is called “Constructive Wallowing.”

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0 Responses to "Sometimes We Just Need Someone to Talk to"

  • multnoma
    August 3, 2013 - 2:35 pm Reply

    Blogger blogs that media presents therapists as

    “deeply flawed creatures who really don’t do anything but keep people dependent on them for years”. Isn’t this called ‘awfulizing’?
    To be fair the media also represents therapists as “wise, compassionate, other human being”

    In my life thus far I have seen 6 therapists for a sufficient amount to time to form a judgement. Two were ‘deeply flawed’, one ineffective (maybe disinterested, I never could tell). And three if not wise were at least compassionate.
    The lesson I’ve drawn from this is that you have to be emotionally healthy to find a good therapist. Otherwise it’s a crap shoot.

    And I have to say that it’s rather narcissistic to think that all will be well if the ‘culture’ will recognize that therapists are wise and wonderful and pay them accordingly.
    I’d have been more impressed with a wish for a culture shift towards compassion for victims of abuse, for mental illnesses and for simple emotional distress.

    “sometimes we just need someone to talk to” Really? I’m pretty sure that none of the 6 therapists I’ve seen ever patronized me. Perhaps I was just in a mood by the time I got to this in her article.

    Tina, What am I missing? thanks.

    • Tina Gilbertson
      August 3, 2013 - 3:47 pm Reply

      Your thoughtful take on this article made me think about it more deeply, Multnoma. Thank you very much for that.

      I don’t think you’re missing a thing, and your assertion that one has to be emotionally healthy to find a good therapist made me go ” … Whoa.”

      I agree with your statement to the extent that, to use an analogy, water seeks its own level. At the same time, maybe all a therapist needs to be is at least a half-step ahead of the client *on the specific line of development* the client is working on. Not necessarily on ALL lines of development. If I believed otherwise I wouldn’t be able to be a therapist myself.

      I don’t doubt for a second that the author shares your desire for a more compassionate culture toward those who truly suffer. I see the author’s “narcissism” as a gesture of compassion toward her targeted readership: other therapists (who also need someone to talk to sometimes, by the way).

      But this is a good lesson for me. When sharing an article originally intended for a different audience, I need to be more aware of possible mismatches between the message and my readers’ sensibilities.

      Your comments are always thoughtful and valuable to me. I’m truly grateful for your input.

    • Nadia
      August 3, 2013 - 7:08 pm Reply

      I could not agree with you more. Unfortunately therapists are not one size fits all & they rather keep you dependent filling there gravy bowl. In all fairness to them seeing a therapist once a week is not the remedy. Therapist are humain making a living on theories. Each one of us are different, each one of us have baggage’s so do therapists. But life is more than Theories. I feel we need the whole family to heal. Even the one who is not emotional strong & unwell. We can help each other. We all have a to part in healing process & the therapists can be of great help with group therapy.

      I may be wrong I am seeing one to many of my friends angry & stressed breaking contact with there family. Moving further & further from them. I feel we don’t have much eye to eye interaction and we spend to many hours sending each other tech messages or collecting hundreds of Facebook friends that either agree or get blocked. We have become a culture of accusing our parents, grandparents and family, teachers for all our ills. We are all connected as a family, trying to cut ties is unnatural.

  • Cheryl Peddie
    August 5, 2013 - 4:25 pm Reply

    I really likes this article Tina. I’m fortunate to have found a great therapist who has helped me immensely over the past few years. It’s a relief to know that she is there and able to help me work through problems that arise in my life, in an unbiased supportive way. And it certainly did not revolve around accusing family members for my problems. For me, therapy was about learning to recognize the problems I could solve, and learning how to solve them. I’ve been through depression and using my therapists advise and guidance, and working hard to make changes in my life, made a bigger difference in resolving the depression than did the medication. I think it’s sad when we negatively judge the motivations of individuals in the healing professions. I don’t know where I’d be now, if it weren’t for my therapist. I’m lucky to have found her and received her wise counsel. Keep up the great work Tina. Thank you for the article.

    • Tina Gilbertson
      August 5, 2013 - 4:57 pm Reply

      I’m glad to hear you’ve got a therapist you feel lucky to have found, Cheryl. Not everyone feels (or is) that lucky, to be sure. Just like with families, not everyone gets what they need from the people they turn to.

      If we’re paying attention, we therapists can listen well and deeply. Very often that deep listening, so rare in daily life, is all that’s needed to unleash the creative problem-solving skills that clients already possess. Empathy is the most underrated rocket fuel I know for personal growth.

      Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment today.

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