“The only way out is through.”
Like most people, I, too, have been guilty of taking aspirin. By aspirin, I mean masking my pain, shifting my focus towards alternatives and even living in denial. Sometimes.
It was during one such time that Lori Gottlieb‘s gem came across my Goodreads feed. Needless to say, it turned out to be an alternative that brought me closer to myself, as I found my own bits and pieces in her characters. Maybe You Should Talk To Someone isn’t your generic self-help book, it is but a document of life, replete with complexities, regrets, sorrows and joys altogether.
The book delicately portrays all that causes people to change and even the lack of it. The stories of her patients and herself are narrated in an extremely raw and unfiltered form, and are enough to move you, and make you reflect upon some of your own patterns and the ways in which you deal with pain.
My biggest takeaway from the book has been about spotting my own coping mechanism, how my past experiences (both good and bad) have been shaping the way I behave, quite unconsciously. And how there’s still so much that I can do to edit those pages!
Gottlieb, a psychotherapist, New York Times bestselling author, nationally recognised journalist and columnist of the weekly “Dear Therapist” for The Atlantic, not only brings her rich experience of helping people through complex phases of their lives alive in the book, but also shows us a way to evaluate ours.
Mental health has remained but a subject deeply neglected for ages. We’ve all continued to glorify how people have solely dealt with adversity and come out stronger. But beneath these individual efforts to thrive in adversity, there lie deep struggles with loneliness, behavioural patterns. These patters lead to suppression of pain and the lack of a safe space that allows one to feel vulnerable and share openly.
The book carefully examines pain, suffering and all that goes behind them. It also reminds you that it’s never too late to start talking. All it takes is one quick leap of faith, and someone who would make you feel both heard and seen.
Hence, this is not only a book about therapy, it is therapy in itself. I’m so grateful to Lori that she shared those learnings with the world in the most honest and vulnerable way possible!
Would highly recommend it to anyone.
P.S: Don’t get put off by the generic heartbreak situation that the book begins with. It is but the tip of an iceberg.