Is clinical psychology all a load of crock???

Virtually nothing has been changed regarding theories of defense mechanisms since Freud. They are still used, in tact, in virtually any theory that involves psychodynamics and/or any theory that accepts the ego as a construct. Hell, even the etiology of paraphilias are still described according to psychosexual stages.

There is a psychoanalytic model of paraphilia, yes. There are also behaviourist, cognitive and biological models.

One could still support the theory of a geocentric model of the universe if you made a drastic amount of allowances for various things. This is the same with Freudian psychology; the neo-Freudians are re-interpreting the new data that comes out with little add-ons to their theories, and they claim the theories we haven’t tested yet to be evidence of the usefulness of Freudian psychology. Freudian psychology is one big just-so story; they take the data and try and explain it using sex and death (or even just sex, I’ve seen it said that sex is an extension of death somewhere). Some neo-Freudians are a little less ridiculous, but psychoanalytic theories still have no place in modern psychology. The idea that we pass through a schitzophrenic stage, then a borderline stage, then a bipolar stage etc. and that mental illness is a regression to those stages is not just ludicrous, it’s insulting.

As for defence mechanisms, could you give me a specific cite of a defence mechanism in modern psychology? I’m not too familiar with the modern Freudian stuff, so I won’t be able to address that until you do.

It’s pretty clear you’re not familiar with Freudian stuff. There really aren’t cognitive/behavioral models for the etiology of personality disorders, just therapeutic models. There are biological models for susceptibility only. In medical school, teaching of personality theory still centers around psychodynamics. Defense mechanisms are listed in the DSM-IV for aid in diagnosis- can’t get more mainstream than that. Even most behavioral and cognitive therapists would agree on a pschodynamic cause but differ on the mode of treatment. Please don’t forget that I’m not defending pychoanalysis. Being able to describe the cause of a disease is different from the ability to treat it.

As for a cite:

(Bolding Mine)!6.htm

Whoops, screwed up the link. Cut and Paste I guess.

Was it the DSM-II, DSM-III or DSM-IIIR that last had homosexuality listed as a mental disorder? I seem to have forgotten.

The Psychoanalytic Society. Who would have guessed they’d support Freudian ideas?

Ok, enough already. You said “Freudian theory is more or less dead” and I’ve shown enough cites that prove that’s not the case. I cited that webpage because it gave 20 or so cites to studies on defense mechanisms done in other journals.

You know what? I’m not a big fan of the DSM either; but it is mainstream and modern. Rather than look to what the DSM said about homosexuality 35 years ago I prefer to go to Freud:

I wouldnt say freudian theory is dead but would say that freudian theory ‘as a whole’ is in pretty serious trouble, ie bits that are found useful in various ways have been kept but fewer and fewer would use the entire package.

Which is sometimes how change in science works after all, remnants can remain for quite some time for all sorts of reasons.


calm kiwi, a psychologist does not usually have a license to practice medicine and cannot prescribe medication. Sometimes she or he may work with a psychiatrist who can.

Medication was what worked for me also, but some people do well with the right psychologist.

calm kiwi, a psychologist does not usually have a license to practice medicine and cannot prescribe medication. Sometimes she or he may work with a psychiatrist who can.

Medication was what worked for me also, but some people do well with the right psychologist.

mrsam-DSM II - used from 1968-1980 & homosexuality per se was removed in 1974. I recall a study - people talked into an alleged two way mirror-they were told there was a learned group of mental health professionals on the other side listening & would soon be providing therapeutic advice. The folks did better, & there was no one listening at all. The placebo effect, & the value of ventilation. Improvement here w/o feedback.

While you’re mostly right I feel the need to further emphasize something. Freudian theory has been pretty much gutted. Psychodynamic theories, which are the closest to freud currently in use, have evolved so far that freud would likely not recognize them. the key term is empirical support, psychoanalyists didn’t have it. Most of the psycho dynamic theories have some support, hence their acceptability.
In terms of general clinical psychology, its efficacy depends entirely on the nature of the problem. If you have bipolar disorder, see someone who can drug you because a therapist can do virtually nothing. If you’re just having a rough time, see a social worker or buy a dog. If you have major depression, borderline personality disorder, PTSD, eating disorders, phobias, certain sexual disfunctions just to name a few, then a psychologist can be of great help, coupled perhaps with other relevant fields (treatment for severe eating disorders requires medical attention for example). If you can be diagnosed, then you’re good. If you’re just generally feeling messed up… that is a lot more dependent on the therapist. Also of note: in recent years there has been a strong focus on comparing the effectiveness of various treatments (managed care has some benefits) so clinical psychology is actually becoming more and more of a exact science. I have issues with clinical psychology; I’m more of an empiricist, but it does have its place. Oh, final word, check the persons credentials. damn near anyone can put out a shingle and, far too often, even testify in court.

Knowledge is power.

People that want to run mind games on you want you to be ignorant.

I like transactional analysis myself.

A lot of psychological rhetoric is pseudointallectual crap, rather like economics. They want to talk forever and not say anything.

Dal Timgar

Like your post very much. IMWT it is an accurate summary of counseling.

The main problem of today is people go to counselors with the attitute of “fix me.” This can not be accomplished, only the individual can “fix” himself/herself. A counselor can suggest things to accomplish, goals and such, but the individual must want to work things out before anything is successful.

A surprising large number of people don’t really want to give up their problems because they fear larger problems may take their place. The fear itself becomes the main distress without them realizing it. This is evident in refusing to follow the suggestions given and wanting to argue each and every point.

If one is ready to give up depression, anxiety, and generalized fear due to some specific reason then it will be done. There are some very simple, easy methods to follow that lead to the reduction of fear and the elevation of self-confidence. These methods cost nothing, and have been around for centuries.