Last summer I got free medical advice from Dr. Drew Pinsky when he presented his HLN talk show to the Television Critics Association. It reminded me of when I had a hard time calling into his radio show as a regular listener. This summer he presented Dr. Drew’s LifeChangers (premiering on September 19th at 3pm) for the TCA, a new CW show that would feature makeovers, health and relationship advice. After the presentation, I went up to Dr. Drew to bring you some more quality therapy without copays or call-in screeners.
CraveOnline: You mentioned having some dating segments on LifeChangers. A lot of my readers are using The Game and The Mystery Method. What are your thoughts on those systems, and your alternative to them?
Dr. Drew: Oh, oh, yeah. Well, my philosophy and I’m actually writing a book about this and I plan to bring a lot of this to this program, which is when people are reaching the end of life and they’re trying to make meaning out of living, out of what their life is all about, they always come to the same conclusion: The important relationships are what gave life it’s meaning. Intimacy and capacity for closeness with other humans is the core to happiness that we have lost. We’ve just lost it in this country. We have broken families, we’re too busy so ultimately for me it’s about teaching men how to understand what’s different about women and how to tolerate and achieve closeness. It’s not a small matter. It’s a really big deal and it’s not one single issue that does that. As much as I love Neil Strauss, Neil Strauss is a very bright guy, as much as I love him, any manipulation or game playing moves people out of what I’m interested in.
CraveOnline: That was ultimately the point of Strauss’s book, but the pick up artist systems keep proliferating.
Dr. Drew: You’re right, it was. I know, it makes me sad. Any time there’s a game in the human experience… it’s an experience, it’s not a game. If you’re not available, open to the experience, it’s impoverished.
CraveOnline: So many of our readers also work jobs that don’t provide health care, including myself as a journalist. Do you know any tricks for us to navigate the health care system?
Dr. Drew: Yes, yes I do have tricks. That’s what I spend most of my time doing for people these days. Go to your doctor, ask for samples. The drug companies usually provide samples. If you have expensive medication, if your doctor knows you need samples, usually they will do that. County health facilities, every county has county health networks. I don’t want to overburden them by saying this but there is free or very low cost services through your county, whether it’s County Mental Health or County Health Facilities. Go to university settings. If you have a university in your community, that’s a tertiary hospital. You may be cared for by residents and medical students but you’ll be overseen by some of the best faculty in the world. That’s sometimes a place you can get cheap or low cost care. Training centers of any type, maybe not even a university, like the Fuller seminary. They give low cost services. There’s ways to work the system that people aren’t aware of for some reason that doctors can help you with if you just ask questions and let it be known that you can’t afford stuff. But the bottom line is you have to come to your own aid. The system doesn’t work for you. You have to stand up and really work it and try to find ways. I deal with addicts all the time but there’s nobody to advocate on behalf of addicts. That’s the worst. If somebody needs six months of treatment, the most I can get paid for from an insurance company is 5-7 days at the most. So I’m trying to find low cost Sober Livings and residential treatments. People are out there trying to provide that. It’s hard.