Alexey Lemeshchuk: “I invested more than 100 thousand euros in my education in the field of psychotherapy”

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“An amazing invention of psychoanalysis. The most primitive people begin to think that they are complex nature.” So wrote Samuel Berman. We talked with a real psychoanalyst and learned how to feel happy and whether we all need a psychoanalyst.

More information about the psychoanalyst Alexei Lemeshchuk can be found on the website.

Alex, what are you doing?

I am a psychoanalyst. If my profession is described a little poetically, then I treat human souls.

What is the difference between a psychologist and a psychoanalyst?

Алексей Лемещук

A psychologist is a person who has graduated from a university with a degree in psychology. Usually, by the end of training, a psychologist has a theoretical understanding of the diagnosis of a person’s mental state, can formulate hypotheses about the causes of certain problems in his life. The university provides an overview of various areas of psychotherapy (the direction of psychotherapy is a specific discourse, which includes the concepts of understanding the psyche, methods, strategies and tactics of helping a person cope with his problems). But the university program is not focused on the fact that the student has mastered any particular area of psychotherapeutic assistance.

In order to master this or that method of work, it is necessary to obtain additional, much more serious education. So, I have been studying psychotherapy for more than 10 years, 8 of them devoted to psychoanalysis. It is important for me to continue my education, professional development for life – while I work in this profession.

Much of the modern understanding of the psyche and the causes of psychological problems is based on psychoanalytic theories and concepts. In other words, psychoanalysis provided the basis for the development of the whole variety of modern psychotherapeutic trends. In a simplified form, the basic psychoanalytic understanding of the inner world of a person is borrowed by most areas of psychotherapy.

I will give a small illustration. I think that every person has long known that in order to be happy, you need to accept and love yourself. But no matter how much you repeat to yourself – I love and accept myself – the situation will not change. With the help of the psychoanalytic process, one can understand what exactly is not accepted in oneself, why exactly a person does not love himself. To clarify in what ways there is a lack of acceptance of oneself and dislike for oneself. For each of these questions there is no one-word and universal answer. Each person is unique and has many individual reasons and ways of dislike and rejection. Having discovered these methods, making them available to our consciousness, changes begin in this area, which seem to others to be a wonderful transformation. But there is nothing magical. This is a painstaking, but interesting and exciting work.

Psychoanalysis is focused on unraveling and understanding the mysterious hidden in our unconscious. Psychoanalysis does not stand still. It is constantly evolving, deepening the understanding of unconscious processes, improving methods of assistance. With the help of psychoanalysis, we, psychoanalysts, help clients to deeply understand themselves, the deep motives of their actions and states, to be in touch with their feelings and emotions, not to reject them.

Psychoanalysis is focused on unraveling and understanding the mysterious hidden in our unconscious.

Understanding helps our clients cope with the problems that brought them to our appointment – low self-esteem, panic attacks, depression, anxiety, various fears and phobias, failures in love or family life, etc. and so on.

But understanding also helps clients to come to much more – to realize their potential in this world. To feel like a mature person, to be alive, to experience pleasure from one’s favorite work, from love and friendship relationships – this is the real goal of psychoanalytic work.

Where do you hide customer stories from your head?

Customer stories, both dramatic and hilarious, move me. Work with each person lasts for several years. We develop a special bond called the therapeutic relationship. They are therapeutic because they require me to adhere to serious ethical standards: strictly maintain confidentiality, do not engage in sexual relations with the client, do not contact the client for any personal needs, be effective and useful, based on the intended goals of the work. In all other respects, this is the same relationship – I have feelings for the client, and for how he and his life are changing. So I can’t hide these stories anywhere. They continue to live with me.

Алексей Лемещук

Do you have seasonality?

I have heard from some colleagues that the most conversions occur in spring and autumn. I didn’t notice this seasonality.

How much can a psychoanalyst earn in our country?

From several thousand hryvnias to several thousand dollars a month. It depends on whether the practice is the only source of income for the psychoanalyst, on the degree of workload, on working capacity, on how much the specialist has invested in his education, how much the psychoanalyst values and how much he estimates his working time.

I have invested more than 100 thousand euros in my education in psychotherapy. My working hour costs more than colleagues who spent less on their education.

I have invested more than 100 thousand euros in my education in psychotherapy. My work hour costs more than colleagues who spent less on their education.

What do you like and what annoys you in the profession?

I love everything about my profession. I am confused and annoyed by something in general in the field of psychological assistance. Unfortunately, the information business has also penetrated our environment. I observe around the mass opening of online courses in psychology, where students are lured with promises that in 6 months they will be able to become, if not psychologists, then at least coaches. After completing such courses, people begin to work. They promise clients the unprecedented – increasing self-esteem in 2 months or learning the art of relationships in 12 lessons. At the same time, the level of education and understanding of mental processes among such specialists is very superficial. Clients, having turned to such specialists, and not having received adequate help, are disappointed and spread information about the futility of psychology in general. Disappointed, they disappoint others.

This situation is frustrating and annoying.

What is the strangest phobia you have encountered in your practice?

I understand that sometimes you want something “peppered” 🙂 But, to be honest, I never evaluated phobias for strangeness. Yes, it’s really very impressive when a healthy, young, good-looking person experiences bouts of fear of death or is afraid of getting sick with an incurable disease to the point of panic, or is alone at night. But I don’t see such symptoms as strange. Rather, it is interesting for me to unravel the meaning of these fears together with the client, so that liberation from them comes.

How do you advertise your services?

Direct advertising in my profession does not work.

Direct advertising doesn’t work in my profession.

Is there much competition?

There are not so many of us, psychoanalysts, specialists in deep work with the soul, psyche, even in million-plus cities. Considering that one psychoanalyst usually does psychoanalysis with no more than 15 clients at a time, I do not think that there is competition among us.

The competitive situation is developing rather with information businessmen who promise unrealizable – a cure in 2-3 months, for example. We know it’s impossible. And the client, succumbing to such advertising, and not coming to recovery, may forever lose hope that he can be helped.

Why do I need a psychoanalyst? I’m normal 🙂

I will not answer this question directly. I will state my point of view. I am not a supporter of the idea that every person needs psychoanalysis. Yes, psychoanalysis can help a person to become much happier, to be realized in important areas of life. But after all, not every person feels unhappy. I think that the possibility of undergoing personal psychoanalysis can be considered by those who:

  • feels that he does not experience pleasure and satisfaction in one of the important areas of life (for example, love or work);
  • cannot be realized, come to the set life goals;
  • feels unstable in their self-esteem;
  • experiencing difficulties in relationships – when things do not go well in the family, with relatives or colleagues;
  • feels that his life is empty, meaningless, there is some kind of crisis from which it is not clear how to get out;
  • experiencing depressive symptoms – frequent depressed states, apathy, hopelessness, meaninglessness;
  • experiencing anxiety symptoms – causeless anxiety, panic attacks, phobias;
  • feels that he is addicted to alcohol, drugs, the Internet, games, work, etc.
  • in other cases, when there is a feeling that a person cannot cope with his own life, does not feel truly alive and happy.

People who experience any of the above look the same as everyone else around, usually not standing out in any way. Just suffering inside. They can be millionaires and just managers, housewives and famous actresses. Mental suffering does not divide people by nationality or material status.

Finally, I want to wish readers to feel happy, to realize themselves in this life to the fullest, to feel pleasure and satisfaction from this!

The interview was prepared as part of the “Interview with our Clients” project. If you are our Client, and we still have not talked about your project in the blog, contact us in any convenient way to prepare for publication.