Good physicians take a clinical history in the interest of arriving at a diagnosis. While the clinical history is a review of ‘facts’, there are in fact, few ‘facts’ about human experience. Different examiners will get different histories depending upon what they ask about. Different family members give different reports of the same set of events. In my view clinical histories are a form of fiction pretending to be ‘objective’.
Therapists tend to be good at being kind and patient with difficult people and they know how to put up with their patients’ demanding and outrageous behavior. Too often the demand for good manners persuades therapists to compromise their integrity in the attempt to maintain the relationship and to make their patients feel worthwhile. But compromising integrity interferes with the effectiveness of therapeutic work.
Here’s an inside look at what makes marriage both incredibly challenging, and, potentially, the most enriching experience of a lifetime.
(This is a re-posting of one of our early Oldies but Goodies) The Early Contract of A Couple Dave: Romance begins with excitement. Love probably begins with shared pain (I sense your need for me). Romance is a game-like shift into another sphere, a mini-psychosis. Romance embodies sex and sex’s more poetic, ritualized version, eroticism. Love, which includes sexuality and […]
Dave offers his reflections about what it’s like to be a psychiatrist disguised as a family therapist. Hint: The language is different, and no medications required
The modern Child Psychiatry perspective is limited to focusing on the child, without including the family culture in which that child lives. This narrow understanding contributes to the child’s isolation. That little person is usually worried about, and trying to help, the parents. No matter how it appears.
Dr. Dave on How To Love Your Very Self: He shares his reflections on how we lose our self-love and how to get it back.
Understanding and changing family relationship patterns can make a huge difference for kids diagnosed with ADHD.
Part of the appeal of the “chemical imbalance” metaphor is that it people don’t have to feel ‘guilty” about their depression, or problems with their kids. But it can keep both patients and therapists from getting to the all-important bottom of things.
The logic of “chemical imbalance” persuades both patients and practitioners that context and subjective experience are not important. But that logic interferes with the understanding the person’s pain, and what it’s made of.
Dave: There are two kinds of pleasure in both reading and in psychotherapy; plaisir (pleasure) and jouissance (to be defined later). ‘Pleasure’ is the general term for reading enjoyments of […]
Meaningful Psychotherapy: It is designed to produce the sense of possibility, and offers ‘whole person’ changes, not simply cognitive adjustments or pain relief.
Contrary to common belief, the Christmas season is often a source of renewal for the family spirit.
There is no chemical imbalance. At least there is none that can be measured or quantified. “Chemical Imbalance” is a persuasive metaphor used by psychiatrists, physicians and drug companies to convince people to take medication.
Modern Psychiatry, in league with pharmaceutical and insurance companies, promotes language which advances the idea that emotional “problems” were neurophysiological ‘disorders’.
Dave: Parallel playing is akin to writing poetry, fragments, often disparate, are blended into a collage-like whole. In a real life therapy session parallel play leads to a rough draft […]