Hi, I’m your Therapist
Therapist. Counselor. Shrink. Over-analyzing son-of-bitch who brought up your past issues with your parents and now you’re resentful for your lackluster childhood.
Whatever you want to call it.
I’ve found that over the years people have a lot of opinions about therapists. We’re right up there with lawyers and politicians in the public mind. And just like them (or maybe not them) I feel that we’re a bit misunderstood. For instance, at a recent cocktail party I had a conversation with someone about my work:
Semi-drunk person: So what do? Like where do you work?
Me: I’m a therapist. I work with kids in the city schools.
SDP: Oh shit you’re a therapist! Oh my god, you must be analyzing shit out of me right now! So like what am I thinking now?? Wait, wait don’t say anything cuz I’m not thinking of anything good enough.
Me: Ummm, well I can’t read minds. I just talk to people for a living.
SDP: Oh man that’s crazy stuff. I bet you meet with some real whackjobs!
Me: Well people can be pretty crazy (translation: YOU are pretty crazy AND drunk)
SDP: So are you going to tell me I have issues with my dad? Because I don’t. He’s just a dick. But we’re fine, so it’s like no big deal. Whatever I just want to get the hell out of the city. I’m gonna move some place like Mexico! Yeah!
Me: Ok well it was nice to meet you. I think my husband is calling me over there. Bye!
This conversation (which was sadly taken from a real conversation) is pretty common when the word therapist slips out of my mouth. Granted this guy was drunk, so let’s give him the benefit of the doubt that he would say smarter things if 3 shots of Jagermeister weren’t pumping through his veins.
For the rest of your sober folks out there, here are things you should know if you should ever happen to meet someone in the psychology profession:
1. Odds are we are analyzing you (yup sorry). But think of it this way, someone in sales is probably trying to hock you a product, a lawyer is likely going to argue their opinion, and a teacher will probably want you to learn something. It’s in the training.
2. Just because I’m a therapist does not mean I want you to tell me all about your past family issues while we’re at a party. I’m off the clock so book an appointment somewhere else.
3. Patients don’t typically lay on couches in our offices. Unless of course you can afford a $300 shrink, in that case you better make sure there are big comfy leather couches in those rooms!
4. Psychology does not equal Mindreader. I wish I had that power because then I would be able to understand why my husband never seems to be able to understand dirty clothes go IN the hamper and not besides the hamper.
5. Psychology does not equal Psychiatry. Psychiatrists prescribe meds because they have a medical degree. So stop asking me if I can give you another Adderall prescription.
6. Psychologist does not equal Magician. We can’t magically cure problems. But I can give you a pretty magic wand if it makes you feel better!
Now that I got that all off my chest, let’s talk about your Daddy issues. You’re 50 minutes starts now.
PS – I actually do like talking and listening to people’s personal stories if you can’t already tell from my blog, just not drunk people telling me stories that don’t make sense. For you all I will listen to anything
What are YOUR perceptions of therapists?? I’m really interested to hear what outsiders think!