One Bad Habit Therapists Can’t Seem to Give Up

I have run into this tendency in psychotherapy numerous times.  Remember, therapy is a business and these folks have to have customers to survive.  

When you first meet the therapist, that oh so rosy first meeting, you may,  or more likely may not,  get an accurate picture of what “treatment” will be like. As far as the therapist is concerned,  this initial session is The Big Sell. Especially for those in private practice. Those at agencies are assigned patients and very often that patient can’t be picky. Agencies have rules and often give patients a hard time if they want to switch. When the patient has ability to choose between many in his or her  community, the therapist has to work harder at The Big Sell, otherwise risk losing potential customers. 

One thing they trying if to shower the customer with compliments. These might include numerous positive words about the patient’s character.  To sell well, for sure the customer should leave happy. 

They change their tone very shortly after. To suck in clientele,  they now try to knock down the character they have built up. Here’s where we hear statements about how inadequate the patient is, reiterating the idea that the patient SURELY MUST BE UNSATISFIED WITH LIFE.  Despite any argument by the patient, the therapist now insists the patient is unhappy.  Only therapy can fix this malady, the therapist insists. 

This is a technique known well in sales. If you read what I have written about brainwashing, and check out my radio broadcast on the topic,  you’ll see that brainwashing works the same way. 

Feedback and comments welcome!