Why We Listen
Posted by Dr. Vollmer on October 27, 2014
We, the psychotherapeutic community, particularly the psychoanalytic community, listen to patients because we understand that to create a narrative, a deep understanding of oneself, someone else needs to listen and provide feedback. Children grow up dependent on their parents to interpret their world, and so adults and children in crisis, struggling with conflicting feelings, need to have someone listen to this conflict and help them sort out deeply rooted dilemmas. Listening, time, and privacy, are the three legs or our stool, all of which are threatened in today’s age of electronic records, hasty clinical contact and limited number of sessions. This change in the delivery of mental health care contradicts the fundamental principles of how mental health intervention becomes mental health. I am not tired of saying this, because not enough people have heard me yet. So, I will continue to teach and to blog in order to advocate for in-depth listening as a means to promote well-being.