The Worried Well
Posted by Dr. Vollmer on January 14, 2014
Is Carla, as described in this post, https://shirahvollmermd.wordpress.com/2014/01/13/a-bad-day/, the worried well, as one reader privately suggests? Internal bristling was my immediate reaction. “There is no such thing as the worried well,” I wanted to shout. “If someone is worried, they are not well,” a mantra, familiar to my hundreds of students. Yes, her dog peed in the living room and she felt persecuted. Yes, to another person, this event would be unremarkable. Exploring why this experience changed Clara is the heart of psychic exploration. On the surface there are immediate reactions, but what happens beneath that for her? Accepting that each of us imbue meaning to our lives allows us to develop intimate relationships with others. To judge one’s inner experience is to create inhibition and secrecy in the other, as no one is comfortable with harsh judgment. Psychotherapy does not just allow Carla to understand her own mind, it allows her to tolerate other minds, as well. From surface to depth is the psychotherapeutic work. The worried have a well of feelings, open for exploration and discovery. To my private reader, I respectfully disagree.