Talk therapy, also known as psychotherapy, is the process of meeting with a counselor or therapist in order to discuss personal situations and work to overcome difficulties. The basic idea is that talking about our problems can help us to overcome them, and that sometimes it is not enough to discuss things with a family member or a trusted friend. In these cases, talking to a neutral third party who has training in dealing with various forms of emotional distress can often be very helpful in discerning what the problem is and how to confront it. Therapists provide a safe, nonjudgmental space in which to discuss sensitive subjects such as trauma, relationship issues, feelings of grief or loss, or the experience of anxiety or depression. Once we have talked about whatever stressors or issues are affecting our life, a therapist can help us determine strategies for coping with our distress and finding ways to mitigate it. There are countless modalities of therapy available, tailored to whatever concerns one might specifically want to address.
With startling wisdom and humor, Gottlieb invites us into her world as both clinician and patient, examining the truths and fictions we tell ourselves and others as we teeter on the tightrope between love and desire, meaning and mortality, guilt and redemption, terror and courage, hope and change.
This furious, trenchant, and audacious series of interrelated dialogues and letters takes a searing look at not only the legacy of psychotherapy, but also practically every aspect of contemporary living--from sexuality to politics, media, the environment, and life in the city.
Quite often, when we contemplate major change, major evolution in our lives, the reaction we get from our dear ones is a combination of an attempt at support, combined with fear that can manifest as undermining, judging us or lashing out.