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Attitudes and Judgements

Posted by DAisym on January 22, 2009, at 21:13:06

I'm still surprised when I hear someone in a group of mental health professionals talk about a client in a way that sounds judgmental. Their attitude, when unguarded, suggests that they feel "most" people could be doing better "if only they wanted to." When called on it, they will back up - protesting that they believe that most people are doing the best they can, or they understand where it comes from, etc. etc. But I often wonder if we as humans are just programmed to believe this about each other, unless we have a personal experience that informs us otherwise. No matter how much formal education, I think we hold our beliefs about people pretty deeply.

And how long does it take for one to become jaded? I know for me, as a parent educator, I'm much more relaxed about kid behaviors, and I have to be careful that the parents I'm working with don't feel that their concerns are being minimized. But I find myself making judgements sometimes - especially if a parent is hard to like.

I suppose it doesn't matter much if the therapist keeps these attitudes out of the consulting room. I would guess that our professional persona is much better at this than our private one. But I came across an old thread where Tamar and I and Annie Rose were talking about our fear that in private our therapists were laughing at our feelings. Or worse, saying to their SO, "here we go again. Another patient thinking she loves me." Along the same line, how awful would it be if they said, "I wish Daisy would just xyz - she really gets in her own way." And the SO responds, "well, she must be getting something out of it, right?"

Secondary gains - I hate thinking about them.

I'm just musing here - thoughts or comments?




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poster:DAisym thread:875522