I really looked forward to reading Maybe You Should Talk to Someone and it met all my expectations. I gave it full five stars and will highly recommend it to everyone.
Therapy is hard work – and not just for the therapist. That’s because the responsibility for change lies squarely with the patient. If you expect an hour of sympathetic head-nodding, you’ve come to the wrong place.
It took me over a month to slowly read through this book because the book was so relatable at times that it required me to pause and take some time, some distance even, from the book to digest and reflect the many meaningful topics and thoughts Lori shares from her life as a therapist and as a patient of a therapist.
Lori Gottlieb is a therapist and she tells very openly about her work with some of her patients (whose identities are of course disguised to be unrecognizable) and we follow her progress with the patients with great detail from one therapy session to another. Another perspective the book shows us are Lori’s own therapy sessions where she is the patient. Lori’s own journey has her understanding her reactions to her recent break-up, her mysterious illness that she can’t get a diagnose for and how her trust and comfort with her own therapist grows stronger. I think it shows brilliantly how even a therapist can stumble with her own issues. Nobody’s perfect, and it’s ok for everyone to seek help even if they themselves are mental health professionals.
The themes we have from Lori’s own patients are very touching, and mostly very relatable. There is the “asshole” patient John, who has a sad tragedy hidden deep within him. There is Rita, who is heartbreakingly alone and doesn’t dare to hope for anything better for her life even when life shows her the good stuff. And there is also Julie, and her long therapy journey as a cancer patient, who needs to accept not only that she is dying but also what her new “normal” is for what time she still has left.
I think many would enjoy, and even benefit from reading Maybe You Should Talk to Someone. Perhaps it could encourage people to try therapy, if they have been hesitant before. Perhaps it could give perspective and comfort if you are dealing with the various difficult thoughts, emotions and life situations the books goes through. Perhaps it just helps you to pause and reflect on your own life and whether or not your are satisfied with where you are right at this moment.
For me, the book was comforting and also a reminder of my own long therapy journey and how much good it did for me. It’s not about therapists finding answers for us, it’s about them helping us learn more of ourselves and help us with the process of change that happens all through our lives. Therapists are our guides when we feel lost with ourselves.
Meantal health awareness is something I always cheer for, and I highly recommend reading Maybe You Should talk to Someone if mental health, therapy and human nature are areas of interest to you. And of course I highly recommend therapy too based on my own experiences with it.
Maybe You Should Talk to Someone fills these prompts from the Reading Challenges I’m doing this year:
Someone faces their fears in the book (Helmet Reading Challenge)
A book with more than 20 letters in its title (Popsugar Reading Challenge)