Psychotherapy: Therapist as Secretary

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..."diagnosis comes from a set of multiple-choice questions, and that that is the pathology to go on. It is a blunt way to get the story down, to record the patient’s reactions to a series of possible scenarios. There is still no smoking gun, no brainscan that shows definitively one way or the other. There is simply a person in distress, a person for whom pain and confusion has become an overwhelming way of being. And what is striking – in as much as you find people who have similar conditions – is how unique each particular story is. As the classifications of distressing symptoms add up to a profile, there is in the certainty of a diagnosis – you have this, you have that – that you have a story to which your entire experience conforms. It is not the most satisfying approach. The current trend towards psychiatric care has been institutionalized. Insurance companies tend to only cover the pharmaceutical route; if a diagnosed person is not following the pharmaceutical model, disability payments aren’t continued or are challenged. And often that struggle for coverage makes things worse for the person’s suffering. Of course, there are cases in which medication is a necessary part of treatment, a way to defuse a crisis. But we have to get away from the default reflex that they are the only way to go. (Click for Complete Article)  

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