Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Bob Newhart and the Untherapy

I may be the last person to have seen this, but, if so, then perhaps there are a few others who have also missed this Bob Newhart skit about how to treat claustrophobia. Better yet, for those who still retain their allegiance to Lacan, it's a short session.

Link here.

My thanks to Ari Mendelson for sending it along.

As for the larger question, is there a truth behind Newhart's joke? Perhaps there is. I believe that most therapists agree that phobias do not respond to classical insight-oriented therapy. They would most likely prescribe a cognitive-behavioral treatment for such problems.

Allowing people to believe that their psychological difficulties mask deep meanings or unresolved mental conflicts does not make them better. It encourages them to hold on to the problem.

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