A Guide to Psychology and its Practice -- welcome to 
                     the «Questions and Answers» page. Click on the image to go to a general Introduction 
                     with a complete Subject Index to this entire website.

and Answers
About Psychotherapy


Website Menus

Page Contents: Healing sadness with psychotherapy.                    


How does psychotherapy help a sad person who has a sad existence, when those circumstances can’t be changed? In other words, how can therapy change reality—outside of drugs, talking oneself into “positive thoughts,” or otherwise masking the truth with a labeled “condition?” If there is real reason(s) to be sad, what can therapy do other than teach the patient to pretend they aren’t sad?

Psychotherapy does not change reality, nor does it tell you to lie about reality. In fact, it teaches you to see reality precisely as it is, clearly and honestly.

Furthermore, part of seeing reality clearly is seeing the past for what it was. Through psychotherapy you can face up to and heal all the emotional wounds from the past that linger in your heart as a festering bitterness that stains everything around you. Once this bitterness about the past is cleaned up—so that your heart is filled with forgiveness and love, rather than hate and anger—then you can face the present and the future honestly and confidently, without illusions.

Sadness is the result of feeling that you have been victimized; once you step outside the “victim” role, you can see the world objectively and face life confidently. In other words, even though psychotherapy does not change reality, it can change your attitude to reality.

As I say elsewhere on this website, life is brutal and unfair, but it doesn’t have to be misery.


 Back to the list of questions


No advertising—no sponsor—just the simple truth . . .

If this website has helped you, then
please help support this website

FOR THE SAKE OF TRUTH this website about the practice of Clinical Psychology does not accept any advertising.

Therefore, if my work has been informative and helpful to you, please send a donation in appreciation, even if it’s only a few dollars, to help offset my costs in making this website available to everyone without advertising.

Gratitude is joy to the heart!


Raymond Lloyd Richmond, Ph.D.
San Francisco
Contact Me




A Guide to Psychology and its Practice



Copyright © 1997-2017 Raymond Lloyd Richmond, Ph.D. All rights reserved.
San Francisco


All material on this website is copyrighted. You may copy or print selections for your private, personal use only.
Any other reproduction or distribution without my permission is prohibited.



No advertising and no sponsor—just the simple truth.