The veteran psychotherapist Enrico Gnaulati is scared for the health of his profession. In Saving Talk Therapy, he makes the case that in-depth, long-term, interpersonal psychotherapy remains one of the best tools for alleviating emotional suffering, helping people flourish, and reducing overall medical spending. But this type of therapy is increasingly difficult to access, and Americans are more likely to be prescribed medication or short-term cognitive behavioral therapy.
Gnaulati's analysis of the historical forces and blinkered thinking behind this shift, while not particularly deep, is cogent and accessible to a non-specialist readership. The lifeblood of the book, however, is his unabashed passion for therapy as a humanistic art form and a social good, and the moving stories he shares from his decades as a practitioner.
A version of this story originally appeared in the December/January 2019 issue of Pacific Standard.