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Maybe You Should Talk to Someone by Lori Gottlieb
Narrative nonfiction

Maybe You Should Talk to Someone

by Lori Gottlieb

Quick take

A sneak peek into the life of a therapist, as told by another therapist.

Why it’s worth it

Growing up, I didn’t know anyone who went to therapy—by which I mean, I didn’t know anyone who talked about going to therapy. Like sharing your weight or how many days it’d been since you’d last washed your jeans, admitting that you visited a therapist was pretty much taboo. It wasn’t until I moved to NYC—where, to quote Sex and the City’s Stanford Blatch, “even the shrinks have shrinks”—that I learned just how common and not-scary going to therapy can be. If I could hit my younger self over the head with a copy of Maybe You Should Talk to Someone, I would have learned this lesson a lot sooner.

In short chapters that are as funny as they are compassionate, Lori Gottlieb gives readers an inside look at a phenomenon that’s often kept hidden: what goes on behind a therapist’s closed doors. We watch as she counsels a man who blames all his problems on the “idiots” who surround him. We learn of the newlywed who’s just been diagnosed with cancer. And we sit beside Lori herself who, after a less than spectacular breakup, takes her turn on the couch across from her therapist, Wendell.

Like all good therapists, Lori is probing and empathetic, and it is both a comfort and revelation to spend time with her words. Part-memoir, part-psychology, and with a sprinkling of self-help, this book is an entertaining portrait of humanity at its best—and most ludicrous. Whether therapy is on your list of topics to avoid, or you’re someone who uses the phrase “my therapist says...” with regularity, I think you’ll find Maybe You Should Talk to Someone to be rife with insight, packaged up in delightful and relatable vignettes.

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Overview

One day, Lori Gottlieb is a therapist who helps patients in her Los Angeles practice. The next, a crisis causes her world to come crashing down. Enter Wendell, the quirky but seasoned therapist in whose office she suddenly lands. As Gottlieb explores the inner chambers of her patients’ lives—a self-absorbed Hollywood producer, a young newlywed diagnosed with a terminal illness, a senior citizen threatening to end her life on her birthday if nothing gets better, and a twenty-something who can’t stop hooking up with the wrong guys—she finds that the questions they are struggling with are the very ones she is now bringing to Wendell: about desire and need, guilt and redemption, meaning and mortality, loneliness and love.
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Preview

Get an early look from the first pages of Maybe You Should Talk to Someone.

Read a sample →