Therapy Isn’t for Everyone


From Medium: “I have heard hundreds of horror stories of ineffective, system-justifying therapists, and I have seen firsthand how bad therapists get made, so I can’t chalk it all up to a few bad apples. The barrel rots the apples. The barrel selects apples that are predisposed to rot. The barrel hates apples that come in different shapes and colors. The barrel is inaccessible to most apples, yet being inside the barrel is how apple-ness has come to be defined.

I want to destroy the barrel. I want to see a network of community care that cares for people who experience daily racism and transphobia. I want therapists to recognize poverty can’t be fixed by doing a workbook, and a childhood filled with sexual abuse can’t be undone by a handful of breathing exercises. I want therapists to fight for economic justice while they help their individual clients cope—therapists who aren’t afraid to name capitalism, white supremacy, and the gender binary as the roots of so many problems . . .

I do wish that ‘go to therapy’ was the helpful refrain so many people seem to think it is. Everyone deserves to have a nonjudgmental space to share their pain and have their concerns heard. Unfortunately, for most of us, therapy is no such place. It’s just another room where we are stared at and made to feel defective—and that’s if we can afford to go at all.”

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  1. Excellent article by Devon Price. Well done Devon and comes at a perfect time since
    I read the article right next to it posted by MIA.
    “Moving toward a preventative approach to youth mental help”

    How I remember the visits and trying another one, all along knowing that my thinking
    that I needed “therapy” was a huge problem and how no therapist lead me in that direction.
    Oh yes, the shame of sitting in a room with a normal person. Oh and how it makes one feel their abnormalcy.

    I hope a lot of youth read this article but they might not understand until some years later, but it’s still of great benefit to hopefully not go down the rabbithole of “mental health”

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  2. It’s so funny for me to see this invective couched in terms of Critical Theory and Social Justice, two of the grand intellectual constructs of the last century, created, tailor made, for a new generation of upset youth, by psychologists who should have known better.

    And so this young “queer” person concludes that it is the “system” that is broken, not people! Well, who do you think creates, builds and maintains systems? People! And so if the “system” is not preforming as advertised, the people operating it probably are broken. The people they try to help? Who knows?

    There have been several calls from several observers that we need to de-expert the whole activity of friendship and emotional care. I agree. The current approach is so not working!

    I made it clear on Facebook where I stand on this – what I think the most obvious answer staring us in the face is. But I promised to go light on that at this website.

    But: What if a person could walk into a school, throw down not that much cash, and take a little course that would teach them a social skill, or a way to help others, or something that would help them patch their own life together better? And what if a whole bunch of people took such courses and got more hip to the whole scene and started helping each other dig out of the silly emotional holes that we so often fall into? Would we still need all those white upper middle class female therapists that Devon complains about? (Hey, I had one, too, for a while!) Probably not. And for most of us, it would be good riddance!

    I have seen some stories of some therapists doing some amazing things for some really upset people. And I have heard many more stories of people trained outside the realm of psychology and psychiatry helping others in many amazing ways. So there is an activity that some call “therapy” that is potentially useful. Not, however, in the hands of most people who call themselves “therapists.”

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