I thought the interview went very well but was too short. D’Donnell said he wanted to have them return. Appearing with Dr. Gartner was Dr. Lance Dodes, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and psychoanalyst who wrote the letter signed by 34 other psychotherapists to the NY Times saying Trump was mentally unfit for office.
They addressed all of the questions about being able to make a distant diagnosis of Trump, a personality disordered person. They explained that when the psychiatrists warned about Barry Goldwater, there was no DSM to enable them to check of observed behavior. They noted that for personality disorders face-to-face interviews are less accurate than using informants who can tell them about the client’s behavior. In Trump’s case we have some reporting from people who knew him, but more so we have hours and hours of televised example of disordered behavior. As for the ethics of doing so, they explain that they feel they have a duty to warn and that it is unethical for psychotherapists observing his mentally ill behavior NOT to go public. They said therapists had a higher duty to warn than to protect the confidentiality of their assessment.
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