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"What's wrong with you?" and "What happened to you?"

jajingna

jajingna

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Here we have two questions that take a different approach. The first one, "What's wrong with you?" seems to be looking for a label to put on your problems. "Oh, I'm depressed. I have anxiety. etc." It doesn't go far into looking behind those labels to see how you got to be this way. It makes the job of the doctor easier though. "Ah, yes, depression, anxiety. We get a lot of that. Here ya go. (hands you a prescription)." Now the doctor might do this 20 times today so it's not like he has lots of time to get into your life story.

"What happened to you?" -- well, that's your story, and it's more meaningful that the first question. It sounds more compassionate too. "What's wrong with you?" almost sounds like it is blaming you for your problems. "What is wrong? What needs fixing?" But "What happened?" sees you in a different way. You are more than whatever is wrong with you. You are also someone who has been through many things. There's just not a quick answer to this second question. It requires an inquiry into events. It has to do much more than just place a label on you and offer you some drugs.
 
T

turnitoffandonagain_again

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This rings a bell. I am sure I heard those two questions being contrasted in some other context not long ago.
It seems directly relevant to my encounters with CBT practitioners, who seemed to have, as a point of principle, precisely zero interest in the second question. Not sure they were even listening when I tried to summarize things.
 
I

insearchof

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Yes, interesting thank you
 
Bluejay7500

Bluejay7500

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It does seem rude to ask something like “what is wrong with you” just feels wrong. But then again I’m not the one with the phd. :doh:
 
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