Document Type

Book Review

Publication Date



Reviews the book, "What Therapists Don't Talk About and Why: Understanding Taboos That Hurt Us and Our Clients" by Kenneth Pope, Janet Sonne, and Beverly Greene (see record 2006-03273-000). What truly hauntstherapists in private practice are not the basic countertransference issues discussed in most graduate training programs but the unspoken secrets of their inner world. Too often, therapists are preoccupied by sexual responses to clients, hostile thoughts, and desire for professional approval, but training and peer discussions rarely focus on these forbidden topics. "What TherapistsDon't Talk About and Why: Understanding Taboos That Hurt Us and Our Clients" is an updated and newly titled edition of the 1993 book "Sexual Feelings in Psychotherapy: Explorations for Therapists and Therapists-in-Training" (Pope, Sonne, & Holroyd, 1993). At less than 200 pages, the book is brief but engaging. The structure is similar to the first edition; the book begins with a discussion on taboos and ends with a summary of suggestions for how to overcome practice dilemmas. Most chapters are broken into short sections, some only a few sentences long, covering topics such as safety and openness. The authors also provide a model for approaching taboo topics and include a discussion of the applicable legal and ethical frameworks. Unfortunately, this edition fails to deliver on its promise to cover a much wider range of topics than the original, which devoted itself openly and exclusively to sexual issues.


Originally published in PsycCritiques