Our patients, friends or family members may sometimes lie to themselves about their destructive or dangerous behaviors. For instance, while drinking heavily, they might say “I don’t have a drinking problem! Other people who pick up DUI’s or spend the night in detox are alcoholics, not me…”
It can be challenging to find a loving, authentic response to such statements. I recently chatted with Stephen Pfleiderer, founder of San Francisco Intervention, about calling out this kind of self-deceit. That is, calling our patients or loved ones out of their fictions about themselves and into the reality of their [and our own] living and dying.