Probabilistic Risk Assessment & CBT as Glorified Gaslighting

This post is a compilation of tweets I made in July 2020 on my personal account. Transferring here for easy linking. I have more thoughts on this topic now but I’ll add them in a separate post.

Here are the tweets:

Thinking more abt the whole CBT as glorified gaslighting issue & how one of the supposed “thought distortions” is “catastrophizing” but I haven’t seen the reverse “minimizing” labeled as a “thought distortion”. Why is that? 1/

I’ve been told I’m catastrophizing due to being afraid of a certain outcome which had happened b4 in similar circumstances. I thought that was BS. Why isn’t the therapist considered to have a “thought distortion” of minimizing actual, valid fears? 2/

Why does the therapist w limited info abt a situation / your prior history, get to decide when your thoughts are distorted? 3/

It makes me think of conditional probability methods ex Bayes theorem. A patient is aware of their priors but a therapist may not be. Their observation of a patient’s probabilistic risk assessment as flawed may be based on their own priors. 4/

A probabilistic risk assessment of the same situation by diff ppl will be influenced by their priors. My issue w CBT is the therapist seems to assume that they are fully aware of events in the patient’s past & that their probabilistic model of these events is more accurate 5/

than the patients because they’re an objective observer I.e. their priors do not matter & they have an unencumbered vantage pt of the patient’s history. Unfortunately neither of these things is true. 6/

But therapists seem to act like it is. A lot of folks are now aware of this kind of thing in the context of medical misogyny/racism/bigotry but I think the process itself fails to acknowledge this as a fundamental issue w the therapy modality. 7/

Tl;dr Has someone written a paper abt CBT in terms of probabilistic risk assessment models using conditional probability methods?

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