chapter  9
26 Pages

Making Monsters

ByRichard Ofshe, Ethan Waiters

Practitioners on the fringes of the mental health professions periodically develop new miracle cures. Recently, a new miracle "cure" has been promoted by some mental health professionals— recovered memory therapy. This treatment leads clients to see their parents as monsters who sexually abused them as children. In recovered memory therapy repression is the essential mechanism and the only acceptable explanation for a client's sudden report of abuse. To recover repressed memories, therapists employ procedures such as hypnosis, guided fantasy, automatic writing, strategic use of support groups, suggestion, interpersonal pressure and old fashioned propaganda, that is, directing clients to seemingly authoritative books in which the therapist's theory is advertised. Repressed memory therapy is a triumph of misapplied influence in which practitioners are demonstrating the power of their methods to create beliefs. At the outer edges of recovered memory therapy lie multiple personality disorders (MPD) and satanic cults.