Review: Maybe You Should Talk to Someone

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, Her Therapist, and Our Lives RevealedMaybe You Should Talk to Someone: A Therapist, Her Therapist, and Our Lives Revealed by Lori Gottlieb
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I have 167 highlights and 11 notes in my Kindle for this book. That’s a new record for me. “Maybe You Should Talk to Someone” is a beautiful book. Nearly every page is dripping with empathy, as Gottlieb tours us through her pyschotherapy practice, showing the inner lives and thoughts of her patients — and her own.

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It’s not a completely original genre (Esther Perel’s Mating in Captivity: Reconciling the Erotic and the Domestic), yet what Gottlieb achieves here is as healing as a session of therapy in itself. There are sections and stories that are so bittersweet and poignant, I was in tears (multiple times).

This book is life. It paints vividly what it is to be human — to suffer loss, to love, to die, to be born. I didn’t want it to end.

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So, those highlights? Let’s dig into some…

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Patients, of course, want to be helped, but they also want to be liked and admired. In other words, they want to hide their vulnerabilities and entrenched patterns and struggles.

often people create faulty narratives to make themselves feel better in the moment even though it makes them feel worse over time—and that sometimes, they need somebody else to read between the lines.

A supervisor once likened doing psychotherapy to undergoing physical therapy. It can be difficult and cause pain, and your condition can worsen before it improves, but if you go consistently and work hard when you’re there, you’ll get the kinks out and function so much better.

Therapists talk a lot about how the past informs the present—how our histories affect the ways we think, feel, and behave and how at some point in our lives, we have to let go of the fantasy of creating a better past.

happiness is statistically abnormal, consists of a discrete cluster of symptoms, is associated with a range of cognitive abnormalities, and probably reflects the abnormal functioning of the central nervous system.

The internet can be both a salve and an addiction, a way to block out pain (the salve) while simultaneously creating it (the addiction). When the cyber-drug wears off, you feel worse, not better.

When your mother emerges from her depression and suddenly seems interested in your days and acts the way you see other kids’ moms acting, you don’t dare feel joy because you know from experience that it will all go away.

The second people felt alone, I noticed, usually in the space between things—leaving a therapy session, at a red light, standing in a checkout line, riding the elevator—they picked up devices and ran away from that feeling.

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