On the Record
"Everyone is always talking about having a 'blended' family, as if people were some sort of fruit juice drink. There is no such thing. You have individuals suddenly being thrown together and being asked to live as a family."
--Sonya Stagnoli, a Fairfax, Va., psychologist who specializes in stepfamily counseling, on the complexity of stepfamilyhood (Washington Post, Dec. 7).
"Dr. [Sally L.] Satel [in her Dec. 15 essay] dismisses the need to treat 'mild' mental illnesses. Would she suggest that doctors ignore 'mild' cases of diabetes, heart disease or cancer? I certainly hope not."
--Kay Redfield Jamison, psychologist and professor of psychiatry at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, on the idea of rationing mental health care (New York Times, Dec. 17).
"You hardly ever have to interact with people anymore...and the less interaction, the less opportunity to practice social skills, such as eye contact...So when these people do have an interaction, it often goes very badly."
--Jonathan Abromowitz, clinical psychologist at the University of Pennsylvania's Center for Treatment and Study of Anxiety, on cyber culture's influence on social phobia (Chicago Tribune, Dec. 27).
"We keep kids in school as long as we do because we believe they need certain skills in order to be productive."
--Laurence Steinberg, Temple University psychology professor, on why high school is necessary, despite recent problems with violence in American high schools (Hartford Courant, Jan. 3).