Therapy should not leave you better adjusted.

* * *

She’s a new client, and clearly involuntary.  She doesn’t want to be here, and doesn’t trust me, and it’s making me nervous.

“So,” she says.  “What’s your job?  As a therapist, I mean.”

No one’s ever asked me this before.

I know this, I think.

But no answer comes.

I feel like an idiot.

Then into my mind pops an image: of all things, the David.  (Thank you, unconscious.)   And suddenly I have my answer.

 “It’s something like how Michelangelo described his job,” I said.  “He said the job of the sculptor was to free the statue from the stone.  That’s kind of what therapists do.   Try to scrape away everything that isn’t the real person — fears, and defenses, and the lies we’re all taught — so the real person can come out.  Something like that.”


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