1st Edition

Advancing Psychotherapy for the Next Generation Humanizing Mental Health Policy and Practice

    328 Pages
    by Routledge

    328 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book brings together a global community of mental health professionals to offer an impassioned defence of relationship-based depth psychotherapy.

    Expressing ideas that are integral to the mission of the Psychotherapy Action Network (PsiAN), the authors demonstrate a shared vision of a world where this therapy is accessible to all communities. They also articulate the difficulties created by the current mental health diagnostic system and differing conceptualizations of mental distress, the shortsightedness of evidence-based care and research, and the depreciation of depth therapy by many stakeholders. The authors thoughtfully elucidate the crucial importance of therapies of depth, insight, and relationship in the repertoire of mental health treatment and speak to the implications of PsiAN’s mission both now and in the future.

    With a distinguished international group of authors and a clear focus on determining a future direction for psychotherapy, this book is essential reading for all psychotherapists.


    Tom Wooldridge

    1. Psychotherapy Action Network: Seeing Beyond the Crossroads

    Nancy Burke, Linda L. Michaels and Janice R. Muhr

    Section I: The Social, Political, and Economic Context 

    2. CBF: Cognitive Behavioral Fallacies

    Farhad Dalal

    3. The Cost-Effectiveness of Dynamic Psychotherapy: The Obstacles, The Law and a Landmark Lawsuit

    Susan G. Lazar

    4. In Name Only? Mental Health Parity or Illusory Reform

    Meiram Bendat

    5. The Exclusion of Psychoanalysis in Academic and Organized U.S. Psychology: On Voodooism, Witch-Hunts and the Legion of Followers

    Oksana Yakushko

    6. The Psycho-Politics of Evidence Based Practice and the Assault on Our Mental Health and Mental Health Care

    Allan Scholom 

    Section II: Therapies of Depth, Insight, and Relationship 

    7. Relational Healing in Psychotherapy: Reaching Beyond the Research

    Enrico Gnaulati

    8. Two Perspectives of Mental Distress

    John Thor Cornelius

    9. Diagnosis and Its Discontents: Reflections on Our Current Dilemma

    Nancy McWilliams

    10. Toward a Science of the Heart: Romanticism and the Revival of Psychology

    Kirk Schneider

    Section III: Implications and Future Actions 

    11. Going Beneath the Surface: What People Want From Therapy

    Santiago Delboy and Linda L. Michaels

    12. Mirror And Window: What Each Reveals

    Todd Essig

    13. Psychoanalytic Applications in a Diverse Society

    Pratyusha Tummala-Narra

    14. The Rights of Children

    Erika Schmidt

    15. Long-term Treatment in the Rearview Mirror

    William S. Meyer

    Epilogue: Stepping Toward the Future: PsiAN's Vision

    Linda L. Michaels, Janice R. Muhr and Nancy Burke


    Linda L. Michaels is the chair and co-founder of the Psychotherapy Action Network (PsiAN), consulting editor of Psychoanalytic Inquiry, clinical associate faculty of the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis, and fellow of the Lauder Institute Global MBA program. She is a psychologist with a private practice in Chicago.

    Tom Wooldridge is chair in the Department of Psychology at Golden Gate University as well as a psychoanalyst and board-certified, licensed psychologist. He has published several books and numerous journal articles and book chapters on topics such as eating disorders, masculinity, technology, and psychoanalytic treatment. He is on the Scientific Advisory Council of the National Eating Disorders Association, faculty at the Psychoanalytic Institute of Northern California (PINC) and the Northern California Society for Psychoanalytic Psychology (NCSPP), an assistant clinical professor at UCSF’s Medical School, and has a private practice in Berkeley, CA.

    Nancy Burke is an associate clinical professor, Feinberg School of Medicine of Northwestern University, past president, board member and faculty at the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis, vice-chair of EMHS-NFP, and secretary of ISPS-US and ABAPsa. She is the originating founder of PsiAN. She maintains a private practice of psychoanalysis, psychotherapy, and consultation in Evanston IL.

    Janice R. Muhr is the treasurer and co-founder of the Psychotherapy Action Network (PsiAN) and clinical associate faculty at the Chicago Center for Psychoanalysis. She is a psychologist with a psychotherapy practice in the Chicago area for over 40 years.

    ‘This lucid and accessible book confronts bias against therapies of depth, insight, and relationships – bias that threatens to undermine the credibility of the entire field and that fails those struggling with mental and substance use disorders. In a world facing a crisis in mental health, billions spent on pharmaceuticals, brain research, and treatment limited by insurance entities to crisis intervention, have failed to move the needle on outcomes. The authors offer a perspective reminding us that the rediscovered "social determinants of mental health" not only play a role in causation, but also in treatment. The book summarizes evidence for the effectiveness of long-term therapies and emphasizes the importance of human connection in treatment relationships within which individuals feel heard. Through their market research and focus groups, the authors show that most people want more than they are getting from quick fix, crisis-focused treatment – they want to feel deeply understood, not judged, and to be empowered by self-understanding to take charge of their lives. Kudos to the authors!’

    Eric Plakun, medical director/CEO of the Austen Riggs Center, Stockbridge MA; founding leader, APA Psychotherapy Caucus

    ‘This landmark book is essential for everyone with an interest in mental health. It illuminates the powerful economic forces that are channeling patients toward the most superficial treatments and clarifies the numerous problems with this approach. To use a medical analogy, the prevailing system resembles treating a patient’s fever with aspirin because "evidence" shows the fever usually improves. But unless the cause of the fever can heal on its own, the patient’s real problems, those that caused the fever, will persist. Individually and collectively, we can do so much better. This book shows us why and how.’

    David D. Clarke, president, Psychophysiologic Disorders Association and assistant director, Center for Ethics, Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, OR, USA

    ‘The mental health crises experienced throughout the world are all too evident these days. It is hard to know where to turn for answers. A good place to start is Advancing Psychotherapy for the Next Generation: Humanizing Mental Health Policy and Practice. In this edited volume, an ecumenical roster of clinicians, lawyers, MBAs, and physicians argue why we need to promote "therapies that stick" and describe how depth therapy not only makes good financial sense but how they advance our national wellbeing. We are all connected. This book shows us that such connection is both possible and worthwhile.’

    Karen G. Foley, president & CEO, Juvenile Protective Association

    Advancing Psychotherapy for the Next Generation: Humanizing Mental Health Policy and Practice offers a widely encompassing lens for the policies and practices shaping modern psychotherapy. With our society facing a youth mental health crisis and with parity in treatment yet to be achieved, the careful examinations provided by Nancy McWilliams, Farhad Dalal, Pratyusha Tummala-Narra, Susan G. Lazar, Kirk Schneider, Todd Essig, Bill Meyer, Meiram Bendat, and other notable authors, are invaluable.’

    Amy Lauren Kennedy, The Kennedy Forum