Crucially, that doesn't stop them being able to do their jobs wellby Anna Blundy / June 21, 2017 / Leave a comment
Published in July 2017 issue of Prospect Magazine
My psychoanalyst’s hallway is full of puffy jackets, the kind of outdoorsy coats he and his family must need for their bracing but life-affirming hikes. Off they stride chatting and laughing, on the long journey that will eventually lead them back to their idyllic cottage where they’ll make a fire, get a roast in the oven and pour the wine.
I think we all assume that our therapist is happy. They’ve gone through the training, they’ve had masses of therapy themselves, they are stable and serene. Aren’t they?
“How can you give people advice when you can’t even sort your own life out?” a Russian friend of mine sweetly asked me one morning over her breakfast cognac. The quick answer to this is that (half decent) therapists don’t give anyone advice, they simply try to understand the patient, and it should, theoretically, be easier to understand a troubled patient if your own life hasn’t been a bed of roses/bowl of cherries. But the stubborn idea behind my friend’s aggressive question is that therapists are content.