First, I'd ask you to read Harriet Brown's article in the New York Times Well Section in "Looking for Evidence That Therapy Works."
Ms. Brown talks about how there is little evidence-based data to support most psychotherapies, that psychotherapists tend to be wishy-washy about their approach and are vague with their ability to describe what they do, using the catch-all term "eclectic." Furthermore, therapists over-estimate their success rates, and while there are proven psychotherapies such as cognitive behavioral psychotherapy (CBT), she notes that surprisingly few therapists use this treatment. She suggests asking prospective therapists a variety of questions including "What manuals do you use."
So I think this is a fair question. If CBT works, why don't shrinks employ the techniques more? I looked at the 365 comments on the article (anything for a blog post). Most of them were theoretical discussions about therapy. Many were from therapists. There were a fair number of comments citing how screwed up therapists are. There were 3 comments from patients saying CBT helped them. There was 1 comment from someone saying a CBT book cured them without the therapist, after other psychotherapy had failed. There were 3 patients who said CBT was helpful in combination with other therapies --so that awful eclectic approach. A number of people wrote in to say CBT harmed them -- unfortunately I read those comments before I got the idea to keep count, but I want to say there were ?3-4 people saying it injured them. One person was finally helped by a form of energy therapy.
So let me ask you, especially those who have been in therapy:
Does CBT work? If you're a therapist, do you use it? Why or why not? And since Ms. Brown's article questions so-called eclectic treatments, can I ask you to limit your comments to the manualized version of CBT which includes doing homework and is structured and specifically called CBT.