Gottlieb (Marry Him) provides a sparkling and sometimes moving account of her work as a psychotherapist, with the twist that she is in therapy herself. Interspersing chapters about her experiences as a patient with others about her work, she explains, “We are mirrors reflecting mirrors reflecting mirrors, showing one another what we can’t yet see.” By exploring her own struggles alongside those of her patients, Gottlieb simultaneously illuminates what it’s like to be in and to give therapy. As she observes, “Everything we therapists do or say or feel as we sit with our patients is mediated by our histories; everything I’ve experienced will influence how I am in any given session at any given hour.” From “John,” a successful TV producer who has walled himself away from other people, to “Julie,” who has a terminal illness and is struggling to find her way through her life’s closing chapters, Gottlieb portrays her patients, as well as herself as a patient, with compassion, humor, and grace. For someone considering but hesitant to enter therapy, Gottlieb’s thoughtful and compassionate work will calm anxieties about the process; for experienced therapists, it will provide an abundance of insights into their own work. (Apr.)
Authentic . . . raw . . . an irresistibly candid and addicting memoir about psychotherapeutic practice as experienced by both the clinician and the patient.” — New York Times
"[In the end, Gottlieb and her patients] are more aware—of themselves as people, of the choices they’ve made, and of the choices they could go on to make . . . It’s exploration—genuinely wanting to learn answers to the question Why am I like this?, so that maybe, through better understanding of what you’re doing, you figure out how to be who you want to become." — Slate
“A no-holds-barred look at how therapy works.” — Parade
"Who could resist watching a therapist grapple with the same questions her patients have been asking her for years? Gottlieb, who writes the Atlantic’s “Dear Therapist” column, brings searing honesty to her search for answers." — Washington Post
“Reading it is like one long therapy session—and may be the gentle nudge you need to start seeing a therapist again IRL.” — Hello Giggles
“In her memoir, bestselling author, columnist, and therapist Lori Gottlieb explores her own issues — and discovers just how similar they are to the problems of her clients.” — Bustle
"In prose that's conversational and funny yet deeply insightful, psychologist Lori Gottlieb is here to remind us that our therapists are people, too." — Refinery 29
“The Atlantic's ‘Dear Therapist’ columnist offers a startlingly revealing tour of the therapist’s life, examining her relationships with her patients, her own therapist, and various figures in her personal life.” — Entertainment Weekly, 20 New Books to Read in April
"Reads like a novel and reveals what really happens on both sides of the couch." — Men's Health
“A most satisfying and illuminating read for psychotherapy patients, their therapists, and all the rest of us.” — New York Journal of Books
"[Maybe You Should Talk to Someone] explores the ups and downs of life with humor and grace." — BookBub.com
"Both poignant and laugh-out-loud funny, [Gottlieb] reveals how our stories form the core of our lives." — Orange County Register
"In her compassionate and emotionally generous new book, Gottlieb . . . pulls back the curtain of a therapist’s world....The result is a humane and empathetic exploration of six disparate characters struggling to take control of their lives as they journey back to happiness." — ALA’s Public Libraries Online
"[A] smart, hilarious, insightful book. Lori Gottlieb will have you laughing and crying as she breaks down the problems of her patients, her therapist and herself." — Patch.com
"Saturated with self-awareness and compassion, this is an irresistibly addictive tour of the human condition." — Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
"Written with grace, humor, wisdom, and compassion, this [is a] heartwarming journey of self-discovery." — Library Journal
"The coup de grace is Gottlieb’s vulnerability with her own therapist. Some readers will know Gottlieb from her many TV appearances or her 'Dear Therapist' column, but even for the uninitiated-to-Gottlieb, it won’t take long to settle in with this compelling read." — Booklist
"Sparkling . . . Gottlieb portrays her patients, as well as herself as a patient, with compassion, humor, and grace." — Publishers Weekly
A vivacious portrait of a therapist from both sides of the couch.
With great empathy and compassion, psychotherapist and Atlantic columnist and contributing editor Gottlieb (Marry Him: The Case for Settling for Mr. Good Enough, 2010, etc.) chronicles the many problems facing the "struggling humans" in her stable of therapy patients. The intimate connection between patient and therapist established through the experience of psychic suffering forms the core of the memoir, as the author plumbs the multifaceted themes of belonging, emotional pain, and healing. "Therapists…deal with the daily challenges of living just like everyone else….Our training has taught us theories and tools and techniques, but whirring beneath our hard-earned expertise is the fact that we know just how hard it is to be a person," she writes. Through Gottlieb's stories of her sessions with a wide array of clients, readers will identify with the author as both a mid-40s single mother and a perceptive, often humorous psychotherapist. In addition to its smooth, conversational tone and frank honesty, the book is also entertainingly voyeuristic, as readers get to eavesdrop on Gottlieb's therapy sessions with intriguing patients in all states of distress. She also includes tales of her appointments with her own therapist, whom she turned to in her time of personal crisis. Success stories sit alongside poignant profiles of a newly married cancer patient's desperation, a divorced woman with a stern ultimatum for her future, and women who seem stuck in a cycle of unchecked alcoholism or toxic relationships. These episodes afford Gottlieb time for insightful reflection and self-analysis, and she also imparts eye-opening insider details on how patients perceive their therapists and the many unscripted rules psychotherapists must live by, especially when spotted in public ("often when patients see our humanity, they leave us"). Throughout, the author puts a very human face on the delicate yet intensive process of psychotherapy while baring her own demons.
Saturated with self-awareness and compassion, this is an irresistibly addictive tour of the human condition.