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Confronting Violence & Divisiveness in America

Updated: Jun 12, 2023

America continues to deal with a tide of unprecedented violence and divisiveness that is tearing at the soul of our country. It is an epidemic of abuse and neglect, according g to psychotherapist and author Phyllis Leavitt, who believes America needs a good therapy session or two.

Leavitt is the author of a new book, “America in Therapy,” and believes some of the basic principles of good therapy can help heal the divisiveness that is besetting our country today.

She graduated from Antioch University with a Masters’ Degree in Psychology and Counseling in 1989. Initially, she co-directed a sexual abuse treatment program and then she launched a full-time private practice, treating children, families, couples, and individual adults.

After 30 years, Phyllis has mostly retired, if you can call writing books “retiring.” In addition to “America in Therapy,” her most recent are "A Light in the Darkness," and "Into the Fire'. You can learn more by checking her website,

Here are some questions we discussed with her:

Q. Tell us about “America in Therapy” and why you wrote it.

Q. Really, you believe that the entire populace of the United States needs to be in therapy?

Q. You say this is “a national and global mental health crisis that is not being addressed,” that “we are on a collision course with our own extinction.” Please explain.

Q. Do you believe there is a direct correlation between destructive family dynamics and many of the actions of some of our most powerful institutions and leaders. Anybody in particular come to mind?

Q. We continue to experience mass shootings—instances where aggrieved individuals wade into a school, a shopping center, a high school prom, and begin shooting leaving blood and tears and tragic loss in their wake. Why? What needs to be done about this? What should our political leaders do?

Q. Q. What is the solution, in your view? How can we interrupt the cycle of violence and restore peace and safety in our country?

Q. When will your book be ready and where can people find it?

Q. Tell us briefly about your other two books.

Q. What can we, as individuals, do about all this?

Q. . What is your hope for the future?

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