Those readers who've been following Shrink Rap for a while know that I work in two types of outpatient settings: a community mental health center where I see people to treat their mental illnesses with medications, and a private psychotherapy practice where I use medications but I also provide psychotherapy to patients who want and need it.
Psychiatrists (in those good old days) used to see people for psychotherapy routinely, especially before medications were available. I was finished with medical school before I even knew that social workers saw clients for psychotherapy. I thought they met with families, worked for agencies, helped with disposition and obtaining benefits, and had a lot to do with foster children and protective services. I believed psychotherapy was the exclusive domain of psychiatrists and clinical psychologists. I simply didn't know. And if I'd had any inkling that psychiatry would become a field where the expectation was that the doctor would write prescriptions for a rapid succession of people, I would never have entered the field-- of that I'm sure.
I've talked here before about why I think, in a totally ideal world, that it's best for patients to see one person for psychotherapy and medications. By an ideal world, I mean one where the psychiatrist is skilled at psychotherapy and wants to do it, where the finances work, and where the resources for this are available.
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