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A Psychologist's Thoughts on Clinical Practice, Behavior, and Life

Stephen Paddock's Motives for his Mass Murder in Las Vegas

My hypothesis is derived solely from news reports. Several explanatory factors seem significant to this mass murder. The killer, Stephen Paddock, was sixty-four, an age when one begins to sense their mortality if they haven't earlier. Despite his two brief marriages and paramour later, Paddock was basically a loner and might have resented never  Read More 
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Thank you, Madonna!

As high school reunions arrive, one wonders how other's lives turned out. Yet, decades later, I remembered the name of only one fellow student, Eric, and not favorably.
An old saying is that one forgets those who have done us favors but never forgets those who have humiliated us, and I found this to  Read More 
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Should America Adopt China's Way of Education?

The (September 9-10, 2017) Wall Street Journal's article, "Why American Students Need Chinese #Schools," makes several points: that, in China, the teacher rules supreme over the parent, and that effort and drill are considered the educational pathway to success. There, teachers engage in behavior which would cause their arrest for child abuse in America. Yet,  Read More 
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Advice for the Beginning Psychotherapist:

(1) Progress in psychotherapy doesn’t directly correlate with the amount of talking. (2) A therapist most usually becomes nervous when there is something that they are not picking up. (3) Patients usually know what they should do but can’t. (4) Know someone well enough before accepting them as a patient. (5) The initially troublesome patient can turn  Read More 
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Diagnosing Bullying

Though all agree that bullying is bad, its complexity and that of the victim are often downplayed. In fact, bullies may primarily be sadistic, depressed, or anxious; and victims may primarily be submissive, provocative, or masochistic. Varying teacher and family dynamics exist for each, ranging from fear and helplessness, to parents who gain vicarious  Read More 
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Treating Anorexia

A major difficulty in treating anorexia is the person's resistance to treatment for, despite their life-threatening medical symptoms, they tend to deny any difficulty apart from not being thin enough. When this is achieved, they believe that all of their life issues will be resolved.
These individuals tend to be unable to  Read More 
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Anxiety Disorders, and the Retreat from Relating to Unconscious Motivation

This past weekend’s edition (April 29-30, 2017) of the Wall Street Journal contained the review of a book describing the author's painful experience with anxiety (“On Edge: A Journey Through Anxiety” by Andrea Petersen). Her long-term symptoms included the usual: multiple fears, and non-medically caused, odd bodily sensations.
After years on various medications and ( Read More 
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Meeting President Trump’s Double in a Princeton Club Bathroom

A week ago, in New York City, while standing before a sink in a Princeton Club bathroom, a powerful voice beside me boomed into the mirror before him. I looked up and saw a man with the image of Donald Trump. “You look just like the President,” I said. “Three people today have said  Read More 
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An Unforgettable and Hopefully Unique NYC Taxi Ride

While traveling from the Upper East Side of Manhattan to Penn Station in a taxi yesterday, I began hearing an unexpected but identifiable noise. It was that of someone vigorously brushing their teeth. I looked toward the driver. He was brushing his teeth with a long toothbrush. When stopped at a red light, he  Read More 
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Murder Threats on the New York City Subway

1. On a moving train, a man stood above a well-dressed passenger who was seated and reading. The man said loudly, “I’m going to kill you.” The seated passenger and others nearby sat frozen. Sensing that the man was disturbed but not dangerous, a woman left her seat, went over, and spoke to him.  Read More 
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