Quick Advice in a Shrink Rap

By Allison Gaudet Yarrow

Published August 05, 2009, issue of August 14, 2009.

Godfather Freud aside, the advent of psychotherapy has many Jews to thank. The invention of the therapy party (think speed dating, but with advice-giving gurus) also finds a Jew at the helm.

“I always say my shrink is my rabbi,” said author and teacher Susan Shapiro, who, when throwing a party for her debut novel, “Speed Shrinking,” decided to make talk therapy its focus.

In the book, a recovering addict turned addictions specialist discovers that her only habit left to kick is a $200/hour shrink. She sees eight therapists in eight days (at a paltry $25 a piece under new insurance) while hankering for a match.

A bevy of guests — mostly media and publishing folks, and former students — descended on the Knickerbocker Bar and Grill in Manhattan on August 3 for three-minute shrinking sessions, with sounding boards that included authors, relationship experts and even a Jungian astrologist. All the female gurus, including Shapiro, gave women hoping to marry the same advice: “Keep your clothes on for three months.”

Shapiro will host more shrinking parties in August and September.



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