Saturday, January 1, 2011

Narcissistic Psychotherapists-Toxic Projections

Psychotherapy clients are often very emotionally vulnerable. They are seeing a therapist because everything else they have tried to alleviate their psychological pain has failed. Some have waited years to get professional help. Many individuals still feel ashamed about sharing the personal lives with someone they don't know personally. Even after you have done substantial research on finding an excellent psychotherapist, including personal referrals, it is your judgment call. Psychotherapists are flawed human beings like everyone else. If you get an excellent psychotherapist, he/she will have deep clear understanding of their primary psychological issues and have worked them through in their own therapy. When this is not the case, if the psychotherapist is a narcissist, the client suffers and may regress into a deeper depression, chronic anxiety, insomnia, more frequent manic episodes, deepening thought disorders.

Some narcissistic psychotherapists have serious psychological problems that have remained uncovered. There are therapists who were excellent students, completed internships, attended numerous seminars and clinical supervisions who are inadequate professionally and emotionally harmful to their clients. These therapists constantly unconsciously project their toxic feelings, impulses, thoughts on to their clients. They are incapable of listening to anyone but themselves---after all they are narcissists. Narcissistic therapists are obsessed with the money motive and feelings of power connected with their ability to manipulate clients, get them to feel emotionally dependent on them. I have seen cases in which clients have been with the same therapist for decades as a result of a strong dependence that the therapist has fostered. This is not therapy; it is a pernicious form of manipulation and exploitation. When you are in session with a narcissistic therapist, one on one, this is the time when toxic projections are most likely to occur. You will hear the "music" and the words. Often the tone is demeaning and meant to humiliate you. The therapist has placed himself/herself  as an authority over you. You are in the subservient position from his perspective. Now he/she can pounce with impunity. I have heard some of the most outrageous statements and questions asked by narcissistic therapists. The unknowing client is caught off guard and assumes that the therapist is right and since and that he is wrong and ignorant. Never make that assumption. It doesn't matter how many degrees, internships, qualified specialties, years of experience that a therapist has had, if he/she is a narcissist, this person will not be able to help you. In fact you can become more psychologically wounded by continuing therapy with this individual. 

You deserve respect and empathy. If you sense that the therapist you have chosen is a narcissist, terminate treatment. I have heard of prospective clients walking out of the session due to the cruel toxic projections of the narcissistic therapist. Good for them. They listened to the voice of their intuition and did their homework. There are excellent therapists available and highly qualified who are empathic, skilled and have your best psychological interests at the top of their minds. Visit my website:

Linda Martinez-Lewi, Ph.D.
Telephone Consultation: United States and International
Book: Freeing Yourself from the Narcissist in Your Life
Buy the Book: and amazon kindle edition

No comments:

Post a Comment