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Celebrating Virtual Therapy

A Poem by Dr. Barry Lubetkin / New York City



Dr. Lubetkin has been working virtually from his home in New York City since March 2020. He is pleased to report that "not a single patient has expressed concern about not returning to in-person therapy, and many appreciate the scheduling flexibility of the virtual model."



The screen flickers

and a new face appears.


Warm hello’s

apologies about FaceTime

since Covid.


She understands:

“I’m remote all day.”

Awkwardness fades.

We talk, we share. I observe

what I would have missed

in my office

strung with diplomas.


I see her dog

and her playful joy.


I see her bookcase

and admire her taste.


Pictures of her family

confirm her words.


Flowers on her desk

make her room glow.


And I see her eyes

and body language

in a different way,


than in my cluttered office.


I see her!


I can’t shake her hand


I can’t sense when she catches her breath


I can’t even offer her a Kleenex when she sobs

but I can see her soul.


 



Barry Lubetkin, Ph.D. is the co-director and co-founder of the Institute for Behavior Therapy in New York City. The Institute for Behavior Therapy is the oldest private cognitive behavior center in the United States.

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