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Copyright © 2009 by Richard A. Grossman, Ph.D.  ·  All Rights reserved  ·  E-Mail: ragrossman@voicelessness.com
In the fall of 1980, I overcame my wariness and asked Dr. Fortson, my mentor at Massachusetts General Hospital for a therapy referral.   Dr. Fortson supervised my work, so I assumed she knew me well and could suggest a good match.   She gave me the names of two psychologists.

I had had an evaluation a couple years before.   Therapy was recommended for all clinical psychology students, and the consulting psychologist, Dr. Reich, kept a list of therapists willing to see clinical psychology graduate students, poor as we were, for a low fee.  He asked me a few questions and made a family tree.   When he got to me in his sketch, he blackened the circle.

"Ah!" I said, smiling, "The one with the disorder...like the hemophiliacs in the Royal Family!"

He laughed.  "No," he said "Just my way of keeping everyone straight."

I liked that he laughed without interpreting my comment, and I loosened up immediately.  By the time the interview was up, I had earned a deferment.  "You're really not a high priority, so I'll put you at the bottom of the list.  I wouldn’t expect anyone to call you any time soon."  I stepped lightly down the steps of the hospital both relieved and disappointed.

But two years later I volunteered again, determined to serve my time.

The first therapist I called, Dr. Farber, said he was happy to see me.  He offered me a regular hour at 5:30 in the morning. These were still the "macho" days of psychotherapy--when one was
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