Newspaper advice columns as a mental health resource
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Recent research suggests that where people go for help with emotional problems is affected by how they conceptualize their problems. This paper reports the results of a study of letters sent to newspaper advice columns and indicates that people using this source of help blame others for their problems and do not see themselves as needing to change. Besides being seen as a place to get advice, newspaper columns are used to obtain specific and general psychological information or to express an opinion. The findings are compared to those concerning other community sources of help. It is suggested that advice columns may appeal to people who would not go elsewhere as well as those in the process of finding a more “professionally trained” practitioner.
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