How Does That Make You Feel? True Confessions from Both Sides of the Therapy Couch

By Jesse Kornbluth
Published: Nov 02, 2016

Sherry Amatenstein is a New York City-based licensed clinical social worker. She’s written 3 three books on relationships. Now she’s edited “How Does That Make You Feel? True Confessions from Both Sides of the Therapy Couch,” with essays by 13 therapists and 21 patients. “I wanted to humanize shrinks to the shrunks,” she says. “I wanted patients to see that therapists are neurotic as hell, too.”

Her contributors — they include a noted screenwriter and a writer for “Seinfeld” — are just as honest. “Has my drive been solely about proving to my narcissistic [Jewish] mother that I am indeed worth her sagging labia?” one writes. A woman whose parents sent her to a pedophile therapist, writes about her mother: “She never met a boundary she couldn’t or wouldn’t cross.”

Most of these essays are more heartfelt than shocking; they not only provide a valuable window into therapy, they give us an appreciation for the process. This includes Amatenstein’s reason for becoming a therapist: “My father was at Auschwitz and had to watch his parents and little sister walk away, knowing they were going to the ovens. My mother was sent to a work camp. I never knew my grandparents.” So she grew up hearing other people’s pain and wanted to ease their suffering. This book helps. [To buy the paperback from Amazon, click here. For the Kindle edition, click here.]