First, let me say that I believe and support seeing a therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist to treat the mind and brain. In fact, more and more people in the medical community are leaning towards most mental illnesses being related to chemical imbalances and the physical workings of the brain.
What I don’t support, however, is people not being honest with their licensed professional who is trying to help them. I have a lot of experience being at both sides of the couch. And I can tell you that most people are not honest with their therapists or medical doctors.
Since the average person only tells his or her side of the story, it should be the therapist’s goal to make the person see the other side, and to show that playing the blame game and feeling like a victim does not help anyone.
However, many therapists actually agree when their clients rant and rave. For example, people have told me that if you complain about your parent, the therapist will actually take your side or just accept it as fact. Case in point- 3 separate family members see 3 therapists, and they all complain about each other. They walk away thinking they are “right” and everyone else is “wrong”, since the therapist reflects their rants.
Most patients don’t tell their doctors that they use drugs either. They are embarrassed, scared, and know it’s wrong. It kinda defeats the purpose of seeing someone for help if you’re going to lie. It’s also a waste of money. I mean, if you have gout, and your doctor puts you on a diet, but you decide to drink alcohol every night anyway, and you LIE about it, the doc is not going to see any results and wind up changing medicine that could have helped you, and no one benefits.
It’s important to realize doctors and therapists are human, too. They have other patients, put in long hours, are prone to mistakes, and don’t have the time or desire to figure out if you’re lying.
Then you have marriage counseling, which actually originated by the folks who believed in genetic super-men. The marriage counselor will try to compromise and balance everything out, when in fact, many times one member of the marriage is clearly the slacker. And there’s one very small detail about marriage counseling: heaven help you if you say something your wife doesn’t like. That’s a LONG DRIVE HOME, folks.
By the way, for those of you who do not know about psychiatry sessions (the act of giving medicine), they are 15 minutes, and the doc writes a prescription for you. You check in once a month and get a refill and update him on how the medicine is doing. Having trouble sleeping? The doc will give you another prescription. Wanna try Viagra? Tell the doc about your E.D. Generally, there’s no true session; the doc just wants to be legally sure you have a need for meds. It’s the Prozac world we live in (not that there’s anything wrong with Prozac). However, meds can only do so much. If you need to work on seeing reality better, that’s where a psychologist or therapist comes in. If you have problems functioning or have addictions of any kind, I’d recommend seeing both kids of mind doctors.
1) Always tell your doctor or therapist the truth, because otherwise he or she can’t help you. The key is to be honest, no matter how ugly or embarrassing you think it is, even if you let the doctor “down” by not following the instructions from last time.
2) Therapists need to focus on positive things and not nod their heads and agree with blaming others.
3) Acceptance, forgiveness, having the right perspective, positive constructive criticism (not taking things personally), and spiritual growth should be key factors of a session.