Therapists in the media
by Bryan Johnson, LMSW
Therapists are individuals who are trained to help others with the many difficulties they can experience in their lives. They are empathic, kind, knowledgeable and authentic. The media does not always view therapists in the same light!
An example of this is from the movie “The Santa Clause.” In this movie, there is a character who is a child psychologist, and the film portrays him as being very obnoxious and a know-it-all. This type of portrayal has impacted how individuals view therapists and all mental health workers. While this movie was made in the 90’s, this is still a common theme in today’s media.
A movie produced more in the present, “Split” is based on an individual who has 23 different personalities and is seeing a psychologist for therapy. This psychologist became so emotional and invested in this patient that her inappropriate interactions cost her her life. These shows are just two examples of a wide variety of mental health characters that have been portrayed wrongly to the public. No wonder so many people "don't believe" in therapy or wonder how talking to someone can even help. But what is the difference between media portrayals and real life therapy?