Re: Construing Psychotherapy Outcomes and the Role of Persuasion
Sat, 20 Apr 1996 07:47:45

DearJohn, I admire the earnestness, honesty and adocacy I sensed in you from
your latest missive. As a newcomer, and one versed in what may be a somewhat
different variation of the PCP paradigm, I cannot speak with any authority. But
I can espond to your request for feedback, and I do so by telling you what came
to me as I read all the "I's" in your note: When the student is ready, the
teacher will appear, You, the teacher, propose---according to your best
lights. They, the student, dispose---according to theirs. Neither is
necessarily correct. All we know for sure is that every action produces a
consequence, and wise actions produce wise consequences...wise, as we assess
them to show up in life, in a practical way.
Also I would add that you seem to be willing to practice some version of
what some call 'tough love,' when you judge it appropriate. I have learned to
respect this as a kind of truth-telling, and I would imagine it would endear
you to those of your patients who would like to get better this century, not
the next one; and who are serious about learning, which perhaps is basically
what therapy is all about---learning, both emotionally and intellectually.