Maybe You Should Talk to Someone, Lori Gottlieb
This exploration of therapy and therapist is for anyone with any level of curiosity about the human condition and why it often needs support. Gottlieb, an LA psychotherapist, trained psychiatrist and former TV producer uses a time when she enters therapy herself as a springing board to examine a few of her own clients along with her relationship to therapy and the man who becomes her own therapist.
With her funny and honest writing, Gottlieb takes the memoir form into both self-help and instructive non-fiction. At the beginning of the book she breaks up with the man she thought she would spend the rest of her life with and enters therapy to survive the aftermath. We’re not supposed to think of our therapists as people outside of their consulting rooms, but of course they are and Gottlieb picks at this. She tries to break down the wall whereby the client is not supposed to know anything about their counsellor and by this is protected from many kinds of judgement, but ends up making a number of wrong assumptions when trying to decipher who her own therapist is on the outside.
Of course we all do this now - google the shit out of anyone we want to know more about. Gottlieb’s mistakes made me think more deeply about misguided assumptions and comparison culture and especially beliefs we can hold onto for long periods of time without any real evidence things are so apart from our own indignance.
There are many sad and tender moments in Maybe You Should Talk to Someone, as well as sharp insights and a bit of LA schmaltz and glam. I suppose what would be really great is people who don’t believe there’s any value in excavating our souls reading it.