Every so often, one of my psychology interns tells me that one of their patients is complaining that they feel like the therapist is a “paid friend.” The patient is resentful, and feels bad about themselves for having to pay for someone to listen to them. I reply to my interns with the following which I was told over twenty years ago, when I first entered the field.

“You are paying for the years I spent pursuing my education and licensure, my expertise and my time. The friendship is my gift to you.”

Have you ever been in this situation, whether professionally or personally? I’d love to hear about it.

Dr. Adam Sheck

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