The Social Unconscious in Persons, Groups, and  Societies, Volume 3: The Foundation Matrix  Extended and Re-Configured

Edited by Earl  Hopper and Haim Weinberg. London, UK:  Karnac, 2017. 262 pp

CREDO: What I believe

I believe we clinicians of group therapy and family therapy have a special role to play as human beings dedicated to the possibility of creating a world where freedom, justice, and equality abide not only in the families we treat but also in the world. We have the extraordinary opportunity–by our extensive work in groups and families–to see in a small way the panorama of human behavior and the wide spectrum of action that our fellow human beings take as they live their lives. Every day we witness others struggle within the limits of their freedom and their fate–to make choices and try to comprehend the destiny that limits their choices. It is our chosen vocation to help heal the many ways that families can suffer. In order to do that we must earn the trust of the families that come to us.

For most of my adult life I have been actively opposed to every foreign war the U.S. military has pursued. I never proselytized my patients with my opinions–but inevitably the wars always came home and entered my treatment room as a cause of mental suffering: Perhaps a son or a sister was a combatant or working for the military …Or a father or mother burdened with memories of war trauma… Or a veteran of one of the wars would come to alleviate the traumatic stress of having committed or witnessed acts of violence. Many suffered from “moral injury”–feeling remorse that they participated in a cause that had no justifiable purpose. Their children and grandchildren suffered as well through the ineffable transmission of trauma unto the second and third generation.

They continue to come to my office in ever increasing numbers.

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Clinicians In Pursuit of Ethics

Keynote Address Given by Bill Roller to the Dutch Group Psychotherapy Association Conference, March 25, 2021

Full transcription follows.

 

First of all, I want to thank the organizers of this fine conference for inviting me to participate this year and deliver the Keynote for the Dutch Group Psychotherapy Association. My wife, Vivian, and I have many reasons for loving the Netherlands and we look forward to a time beyond the pandemic when we may once again visit and make person to person contact with you.

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A Mental Health Clinician Calls on the U.S. to Confront Aggressive Scapegoating

The Scapegoater-in-chief 

In the current political climate of our nation, the politics of fear and gratuitous aggressive scapegoating have become the norm.

The Task Leader in the White House has become the Scapegoater-in-chief. This affects the norms of behavior for the country at large but also affects the patients we work with in our practice.

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Sweetheart deal between Insurance Companies and Hospital Systems Concerning Group Therapy Reimbursement

Today I want to draw attention to the sweetheart deal that seems to exist between Insurance Companies and Hospital Systems concerning reimbursement for group therapy treatment provided for patients. This fact came to my attention recently when a patient was treated in group therapy for one month at Herrick Hospital in Berkeley, a Sutter Health Affiliate.  Blue Shield of California was billed for 20 sessions of group therapy at a rate of $ 1400.00 per group session for a total of $ 28,000.00.  Blue Shield reimbursed the Sutter Affiliate at that rate.

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Are There Any Problems with Group Therapy?

More like misconceptions. Let’s explore what those are.

In psychology we say it’s easier to change your behavior than to change  your attitudes and beliefs. And when it comes to group therapy, negative attitudes and beliefs regarding the practice might be preventing you from giving it a try.

So let me put a positive spin on some beliefs that might stop you from joining a group for therapy and choosing individual therapy instead.

1 –
“In group therapy, I’ll have to listen to the others and not be heard myself.”

Unfortunately, this is too often the experience of some people in their families of origin. They are never truly seen or heard.

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BLM racism and scapegoating

Confronting Aggressive Scapegoating in the Family and Society

Scapegoating is always a group phenomenon. How do you stop it in your family and community?

It’s Happening in the Nation

There is a psychological and sociological phenomenon that is rife in our political, family, and social context today. Scapegoating is the process of social exclusion that begins with the projection of negative attributes and traits onto one person or a class of persons with the intent of rejecting their right of membership in the group. Such projection arouses fears of rejection and annihilation in those who are scapegoated.

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Depression Therapy

How Effective Group Therapy Leaders Help with Depression & Anxiety

The effective group therapist will help switch the focus from the self-absorption of being anxious or depressed to re-entry into the world of the living.

In these groups we practice using our sense of humor to activate ourselves—but not in a way that group members will feel put down or made fun of. The group therapist will help the group discuss how often we become anxious or depressed to avoid taking an important action or making a decision. Within the context of trust and safety, the group will encourage you to take the risk of being un-depressed and feeling calm—which may be a new and unfamiliar experience for you.

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insurance reimbursement therapist

Sweetheart Deal Between Insurance Companies and Hospital Systems Concerning Group Therapy Reimbursement

Today I want to draw attention to the sweetheart deal that seems to exist between insurance companies and hospital systems concerning reimbursement for group therapy treatment provided for patients. This fact came to my attention recently when a patient was treated in group therapy for one month at Herrick Hospital in Berkeley, a Sutter Health Affiliate.  Blue Shield of California was billed for 20 sessions of group therapy at a rate of $1400.00 per group session for a total of $28,000.00.  Blue Shield reimbursed the Sutter Affiliate at that rate.

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It’s Midnight in America – A book review

Here’s a review I wrote of Dan Ellsberg’s new book, The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner, published in Tikkun magazine.  The review’s title is “It’s Midnight in America”.

Read the review on Tikkun magazine here: https://www.tikkun.org/nextgen/daniel-ellsbergs-the-doomsday-machine.

There was a game that children in the southern Midwest played during the early days of the Cold War. It was called, “What Time is it Mr. Fox?”  It was a version of “tag” and went something like this.

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Video interview with Daniel Ellsberg

Interview with Dan Ellsberg Now Available on Vimeo

The interview that I conducted with Dan Ellsberg on April 22, 2018 concerning his new book, The Doomsday Machine: Confessions of a Nuclear War Planner, is now available on Vimeo.

The man who revealed the Pentagon Papers now gives us a candid look inside the world of thermonuclear war planning from the perspective of one who in the early 1960’s helped develop the U.S strategy for using thermonuclear weapons.

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Ready for Therapy? Or Still Unsure?

Hopefully you've checked out the site and now trust in my qualifications and expertise as a therapist. But maybe you're undecided. Which is best for you? Group, individual, couple's or family therapy? Give me a call and we'll discuss your options.

Mind made up, and ready to go? Great. Contact me and we'll schedule our first session together. We meet online until we're back meeting in Berkeley.

Contact

Berkeley Group & Family Therapy Institute
1104 SHATTUCK AVENUE
BERKELEY, CA 94707
Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist
LMFT #14245

(510) 525-9215
VIVBILL@AOL.COM

Zoom Sessions Available for Your Convenience and Safety

The Berkeley Group and Family Therapy Institute 
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