To the Editor:

Re “Your Therapist’s Secret Life” (Sunday Review, March 31):

Lori Gottlieb correctly says the therapist doesn’t Google the patient because the therapist wants to know the patient’s version of his or her life, not the Google version. But when she turns to discussing the patient’s knowing about the therapist’s private life, she focuses on protecting the therapist’s privacy rather than on compromising the depth of the treatment.

For psychoanalytic treatment, fantasies about the therapist offer the patient an opportunity to explore his unconscious through the transference. Google makes it difficult to parse what part of the patient’s view of the therapist is based on transference from early relationships and what part is Google.

This becomes even more of an interference in the treatment if the patient is keeping a secret: that he or she has Googled the therapist.

Roberta Satow
New York
The writer is a psychoanalyst.



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