It never occurred to me that therapists would go to therapy. To be honest, my only experience with considering therapists outside of the office took place when I saw my former therapist at a rummage sale and had no idea how to handle the awkwardness. It was like seeing a teacher outside of school, except that teacher knew some super intimate stuff about me. Spoiler alert: we didn’t look at each other.
Lori Gottlieb explores the human side of therapists, including their day-to-day lives, in the poignant and at times hilarious Maybe You Should Talk to Someone.
Gottlieb describes how she had to go about finding a referral for a counselor to help her deal with a breakup, but ends up getting more than she bargained for when the therapist (Wendell) who is five steps ahead of her, doesn’t actually want to talk about the breakup for that long. She tells the story of how she became a therapist in the first place and casts her clinical spotlight onto her own patients.
Gottlieb shares struggles as well as those of her case studies: a young woman who casually hooks up with men and drinks too much, an older woman who says she will end her life if things haven’t gotten better by her next birthday, a self-absorbed television producer who is convinced everyone around him is an idiot, and a newlywed that is facing a deadly diagnosis. Each person is treated with respect and dignity as their stories are recounted, and the dynamic between the author and her OWN therapist unfolds like a dance.
What motivates people? How do they talk to themselves about their lives? What makes us happy, and why do we think that other things, such as achievements, promotions, or purchases will make a difference?
Gottlieb examines human connections, age-old struggles, and more in a book that legitimately made me laugh and cry. I couldn’t recommend it more highly.