Updated: Mar 30, 2020
This book is incredible. Hands down, one of my favorite books of the year and one I will refer back to often. I tested out my newest book nerd purchase, Book Darts, and marked almost every page. I plan on going back through in a week or so and highlighting the lines I marked and take some notes in the margins. I want to give it a few days to let the message sink in. Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb is an open, honest, and authentic account of therapy from the perspective of a therapist, who also attends therapy. Gottlieb's writing is refreshing and humble. Her patient's stories touched me each in a different way. I felt every emotion as I read this book, but the most prominent was the sense of kinship I felt with Gottlieb and her patients. I felt connected to each and every one of them and saw a bit of myself in each of their struggles. I laughed, I cried, and I cried some more. I let myself feel it all, which I think is what Gottlieb was hoping for when she wrote this book.We chose this book for my virtual book club, My Night's Book Clubbed, and it was one of the easiest books to draft conversation starters on. There are so many directions you can go with a discussion on this book and I highly recommend it if you are contemplating your next book club pick.
Maybe You Should Talk to Someone is told from Gottlieb's perspective with four of her clients, as well as path to becoming a therapist and her sessions with her therapist. I felt like parts of this book were written exactly for me, especially when Gottlieb starts discussing how everyone hopes their therapist likes them as a person and thinks of them outside of their sessions. I swear, I have felt the same way. I have such a strong connection with my therapist and I rely on her completely. I have bared my soul with her in a way that I have not with anyone else. The thought of her not liking me or dreading our sessions would break my heart, but it is also such a silly vanity to worry if someone does not like you.
Each chapter switches from Gottlieb's perspective in her therapy sessions, to her sessions with her clients, making the book flow easily and quickly. The patient that stuck out the most to me was Julie, a young woman in her 30's who has cancer and was told her time is limited. Ugh, talk about pulling on your heartstrings. Her story stuck with me and it was incredible how Gottlieb worked with her to make the most of each and every day. Her story was inspiring and hit me hard. The other patients, John-a high wheeling Hollywood sitcom writer who struggles with everyone who comes across his path because he feels like everyone is "idiots," Rita-the 70 year old woman who has had a loveless, hard life, and is giving herself one more year to try and turn it around or else she does not see a reason to live, and Caroline-the young, attractive woman who is the life of the party, but has an alcohol addiction that she is not ready to face and a tense relationship with her parents. Each patient's story is so different, but also so much the same. When you peel away all of the layers, it comes down to each of them wanting to feel like their life is meaningful, joyful, and worth living.
I have a unique perspective with therapy and have been attending regularly for three years. I am at a point in my own therapy where I have moved past the hardest stage and am on the other side, working on remembering what I learn in sessions and implementing it in my daily life. Every so often, I will have a backslide, but for the most part, I have come out on the other side. I was completely ready to read a book like this. If I read it four years ago, I would have taken away a fraction of the message. I highly recommend Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb if you are open and accepting to self reflection. Then, you will get the most out of it.
I gave Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb a ★★★★★ review and it instantly became one of my favorite reads of 2019. Purchase a copy for yourself so you can mark it up! This is one you will want to own and re-read sections throughout phases of your life.