Inspired by her weekly column "Conversations with My Therapist," Scottish journalist Martin takes a captivating look at one woman's adventure in psychotherapy. Heading into her mid-30s, Martin felt as though "time were running out"; with most of her friends married with children, Martin wanted to "love life again rather than feel it is an unbearable uphill struggle." Shortly after this revelation, she committed to one year with a therapist she calls "Dr. J" and began to peel back the "layer of armor" that she had spent her whole life building to protect herself. While most of her therapy time is spent obsessing over past, present and possible future relationships (including her relationship with Dr. J), Martin also explores the effect her therapy has on her everyday life and her relationship with her family. Skillfully dodging the possibility of becoming yet another memoir of unrelenting self-praise, Martin's narrative is shamelessly funny, and she misses no opportunity for self-deprecating humor or cringe-inducing scenes. It's impossible not to root for Martin as she creates her own happy ending. (Feb.)Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Girl on the Couch: Life, Love, and the Confessions of a Normal Neuroticby Lorna Martin
Journalist Lorna Martin had always thought that therapy was an outrageous con, a fraud designed for people to “whine about their weight/ self-esteem/ alcohol/ commitment problem while blaming their emotionally absent father and/or overly critical mother.” If you have a problem, Martin believed, you just deal with it–pray, get drunk, pop some pills, or listen to ABBA. But after yet another disastrous relationship and an embarrassing misstep at work, plus a spate of uncontrollable sobbing, Martin was running out of solutions for dealing with it. In an uncharacteristic move, she sat down on the couch of Dr. J., where she spent the next year talking, listening, and learning more than she ever expected. The result, Girl on the Couch, is Martin’s warm, funny, and intimate diary of her voyage into the world of therapy–what she calls “the strangest journey of my life”–and the incredible discoveries she made along the way.
From the Trade Paperback edition.
Like any "normal neurotic," Scottish journalist Martin has grappled with the vicissitudes of life. Eventually, low-grade dissatisfaction and a nagging desire to become happier led her to therapy. From her tentative initial sessions to the conclusion, Martin achieved the psychological growth she sought and became a surprised advocate of the couch. Psychotherapy skeptics, take note.
–Julie Klam, author of Please Excuse My Daughter
“Hilarious . . . A cross, if you will, between HBO’s In Treatment and Bridget Jones’s Diary.”
–The Guardian (London)
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