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Synopsis

The must-have guide to honestly and sensitively answering your clients' questions

Written to help therapists view their clients' questions as collaborative elements of clinical work, What Do I Say? explores the questions—some direct, others unspoken—that all therapists, at one time or another, will encounter from clients. Authors and practicing therapists Linda Edelstein and Charles Waehler take a thought-provoking look at how answers to clients' questions shape a therapeutic climate of expression that encourages personal discovery and growth.

Strategically arranged in a question-and-answer format for ease of use, this hands-on guide is conversational in tone and filled with personal examples from experienced therapists on twenty-three hot-button topics, including religion, sex, money, and boundaries. What Do I Say? tackles actual client questions, such as:

  • Can you help me? (Chapter 1, The Early Sessions)

  • Sorry I am late. Can we have extra time? (Chapter 9, Boundaries)

  • I don't believe in all this therapy crap. What do you think about that? (Chapter 3, Therapeutic Process)

  • Why is change so hard? (Chapter 4, Expectations About Change)

  • Will you attend my graduation/wedding/musical performance/speech/business grand opening? (Chapter 20, Out of the Office)

  • Where are you going on vacation? (Chapter 10, Personal Questions)

  • I gave your name to a friend . . . Will you see her? (Chapter 9, Boundaries)

  • Should I pray about my problems? (Chapter 12, Religion and Spirituality)

  • Are you like all those other liberals who believe gay people have equal rights? (Chapter 13, Prejudice)

The power of therapy lies in the freedom it offers clients to discuss anything and everything. It's not surprising then, that clients will surprise therapists with their experiences and sometimes with the questions they ask. What Do I Say? reveals how these questions—no matter how difficult or uncomfortable—can be used to support the therapeutic process rather than derail the therapist–client relationship.

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