How important is trust between a Therapist and a Patient?

Here are questions from readers that were addressed by leading psychiatrist Dr Manish Bajpayee. The identities of the solution-seekers have been withheld to protect their privacy. You too can send your questions at editorial@pune365.com

Dear Doctor, something very devastating happened. My wife was molested by some drunkards at a New Year’s party. This has really caused her a lot of distress. I want to be supportive but I do not know how to approach the situation. She has lost all her confidence and I do not want her to go into her shell. Please guide me as to what I can do.

You should listen to her and it is best if she talks it out. If possible, please take her to meet a counselor. She could have an acute stress reaction so it is best to talk things out and reach a resolution otherwise in time she could have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). She will become irritable and this may also result in body image issues. There must be a crisis intervention.

Dear Doctor, how important is trust between a patient and his therapist? For some reason, I do not trust my therapist at all. I feel that he is always judging me.

It is very important that you trust your therapist. You may tell your therapist that he or she is being judgemental. You can change your therapist even if you feel an iota of discomfort.

My husband and I recently separated. It was very amicable and we have equal custody of the child. However, our son is just not willing to accept that we have parted ways. He feels embarrassed because his parents aren’t together. How can we explain to him that this isn’t something to feel embarrassed about?

Your child is embarrassed about this. It is only natural for him to feel this way because the child is the centre of the family so he feels that the separation is because of him. It will take time for him and he must not be fed the wrong information by either parent. It is best to talk to him about it and assure him that it isn’t his fault. He will be fine when he sees that life is as good as it was.

My best friend recently got into a horrific accident and lost an arm. She has recovered from the injuries but not from the trauma. She is seeing a therapist but aside from that how can I help her out? 

The chances of your friend having PTSD are very high since you have described the accident as horrific. She will feel disconnected from everything and you should try and ask her about the incident. Help her engage with life. The best you can do is to bring the person to interact with life.

Dr Manish Bajpayee

Dr Manish Bajpayee

Dr Manish Bajpayee is a consultant psychiatrist in Pune with over 20 years of extensive clinical experience in assessing and treating clients with a range of psychological problems and other mental health related issues. He is currently a consultant with Inamdar Hospital and Ruby Hall Clinic. Dr Bajpayee addresses reader queries every other Thursday on Pune365.
Dr Manish Bajpayee

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