|David Schnarch Mary Jo Barrett CE Comments Symposium 2012 Attachment Theory Clinical Mastery Linda Bacon Mindfulness Challenging Cases Alan Sroufe William Doherty Community of Excellence Narcissistic Clients Couples Clinical Excellence Diets Etienne Wenger The Future of Psychotherapy Ethics Future of Psychotherapy Couples Therapy Anxiety Great Attachment Debate Wendy Behary Mind/Body Gender Issues Men in Therapy Brain Science Trauma Attachment|
|The 8 Minute Cure - Page 15|
Dr. Phil doesn't know or care or question why being fat is such a shaming thing in America, or why it's unhealthy. He's content to exploit the culture's loathing of fatness (even while we're a culture of fatties).
What does Dr. Phil tell these fleshy women? "The only way you can fail is to stop talkin' to me. 'Cause if you keep talkin,' I'm gonna keep pushin'." Dr. Phil says outright that he's The Answer. He's The Guarantee. His claim is to be Therapy personified. "The only way you can fail is to stop talkin' to me."
And the audience is delighted at the announcement that a copy of Dr. Phil's bestselling weight-loss book is under each and every one of their seats. Almost as an afterthought, he informs us all that the book is "out in paperback now, by the way." By the way, indeed. Of course these women should lose the weight; obesity, some studies show, is as unhealthy as smoking. But health is barely mentioned, much less stressed.
It's about fear. And it's about money. This program not only played upon the fears of these women--and of the millions like them viewing at home--but Dr. Phil used his considerable charisma to reinforce their fears and their shame, so that millions more would buy his book.
Dr. Phil may be sincere. He may himself be stuck in the illusions that he's selling. But the show isn't about therapy. It's about selling. And its immense popularity is, in large part, about buying. Dr. Phil exploits a consumer society's delusion that you can buy something--a book, a pill, a "programming" regimen--that'll fix your broken, sad life.