I read this book thinking it might be a reflection on internalization, but I was disappointed overall and wondered if anyone else has read it and has thoughts. It's a true story, and apparently a fairly popular book because it's going to be made into a movie.  Maybe it was the style of writing which put me off, or the focus on the author's famous boyfriend, instead of her P.

The P's death was shocking and devastating for many of his patients because he didn't tell them he was even sick, let alone suffering from lung cancer, which helps me keep my experience in perspective since I was given a little info about my P's illness.  The author talks about how she tried to find some answers after his death, including a meeting with the P's wife, and another P that was a colleague, so I also found that helpful, knowing that she tried to find answers, just as I've done after my P's death.  She includes comments from other patients that were posted on the P's obituary, which are touching due to the outpouring of love and gratitude for this P. 

Original Post

Hi Summer,

I can't remember too much about the book, just that I also had this sort of disappointing feeling, it seemed like the book was promising something a bit different or that's what I imagined. I'm sorry that you were hoping to find something to help with your grief, someone who had a similar experience, but that you didn't find that in the end. 

puppet

Overall I found the book to be disappointing, but I certainly related to the shock of learning of your therapist's death in an impersonal way, which isn't typical of how we usually learn of the death of someone we feel very close to.   She found out by calling and getting a message on his answering machine, and other clients found out by seeing the obituary online or in the paper.  

I read a description of the book that said it could be summed up with something like, "I'm this amazing person with this amazing life, be impressed, but also I am filled with self-loathing, but I am amazing, oh, and my therapist died." Perhaps an unkind assessment--I didn't read the book--but maybe there was some distracting and un-relatable self-absorption? Maybe it's being made into a movie because of the apparent hobnobbing with famous people?

Anyway...you write well, Summer. If you were to write about your experience, "normal" people might get comfort from it. Of course, doing so might not interest you, or might be too painful. But there are a lot more "normal" people than rich and famous. 

Just a thought.

Hi Exploring,

Thank you for believing I'm a good writer.  I have thought about writing an article describing what I went through trying to find help after my P died, because I had to be proactive and I think I should have received more support from my P's colleagues, but my case isn't that unusual.   Also how difficult it is coming to terms with the grief when you can't attend a memorial, meet with friends and family who share the grief as we normally do when someone close to us dies.  You grieve alone and try to access that voice in your head but at first it's too painful because hearing that voice only accentuates the loss.

In the book the author wasn't given a backup T either, but she sought out a P who knew her P, which seemed to help her get some answers, and she also had lunch with her P's wife, who told her that she was special to him.  I find that very interesting because I thought therapists weren't supposed to discuss patients with anyone, including their spouses, but if their meeting really happened, it was very generous of the P's wife to meet and try to comfort the author.

Summer

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