I was recently interviewed on Slate's "Trumpcast," by Leon Neyfakh, about how Donald Trump is making his way into my client's psyches, and all of our emotional and relational lives.
In addition to the people I work with, many people in my life who are women, queer, and/or people of color have shared that they feel increasingly unsafe living in our country and that, even more than terrorist organizations without the country, they fear fellow Americans within who are influenced by Trump's prejudicial hate speech. Trump continues to direct hate at these people categorically, and he rouses and encourages his followers to do the same.
Trump is also affecting some of our closest relationships. Individuals who have family voting for Trump told me how distressing it is to have a parent or sibling supporting a candidate who makes people like him/herself into targets of aggression on a daily basis.
But what is perhaps most interesting about my client's reactions to Donald Trump, is the recognition that each of them knows someone very similar to him in their personal lives. Someone who has bullied his way to power within a family system, and continues to get away with it. So, in a way, many people feel less alone knowing that this phenomenon -- of a person who is given too much power and has no idea what to do with it, other than to attack anyone he fears might steal it from him -- is not only occurring in their family, but in the American family as well. And yet, at the same time, my clients have seen the destruction wreaked in their families when a bully was not stopped, and they worry what will happen to our country if we don't collectively push back against Trump's reckless and hateful approach to leadership.
Listen to the podcast below for the full interview, and to find out the roles Megyn Kelly, John McCain, and Paul Ryan play in our American family.