Critical Therapy Antidote (CTA) is a platform for talking therapists and allied mental health professionals who are concerned about the negative impact of Critical Social Justice (CSJ) on their professions. Founded in 2020, CTA has rapidly established itself as a significant international forum for discussion. its associated CTA Network creates possibilities for linking up and commiting to positive actions to defend the therapy field.
Our cause is to preserve the integrity of talking therapies at this critical moment. Therapists of all persuasions are advocates of positive change as emergent from crisis: we help people find healthy emotional ground, one that supports human flourishing. This advocacy transpires within the therapeutic alliance, a relationship that fosters openness and trust.
Now, in the foothills of the 21st century, profound global change disrupts society and its cultural practices such as talking therapies. This crisis can be reframed in a positive way. Dominant worldviews are being challenged and this results in a crisis of confidence in authority of all kinds. Traditional talking therapies can be very helpful during such times because of the emphasis placed on personal agency and discerning one’s own solutions.
It is important to note that we share common concerns with CSJ such as a commitment to a fair and just society. We also accept that individuals are conditioned by wider cultural contexts and we see theories such as intersectionality as shedding light on people’s experience of marginalization and vulnerability. However, in contrast to CSJ, we believe that an objectively fair and just society is best achieved incrementally via liberal principles of individual rights and free speech. We also believe that the individual’s social/cultural context is only one of multiple factors shaping human experience.
CTA seeks to ensure that professional frameworks, standards, and training continue to be evidence-based and politically non-partisan. They must emphasize diversity, equality, individuality, and the centrality of human values, in order to help clients experience increased resilience, wellbeing, congruence with reality, personal efficacy, and a sense of individuality. We hold that unfalsifiable belief systems belong in the realm of religion and that the therapeutic field should be defended against the encroachments of political ideologies such as CSJ. We maintain that the individual bears a strictly personal responsibility for adopting or rejecting such belief systems, and that authoritarian political ideologies must not be imposed on the society at large.
This website is intended to operate as an open and heterodox forum for concerned professionals, trainees, educators, and clinical theorists in the field as well as for current and potential clients of counselors and psychotherapists. The therapy field is wide-ranging and pluralistic including: empirically-based therapies such as CBT as well as philosophically-informed approaches such as Existential psychotherapy; and secular approaches such as generic mainstream psychotherapy as well as transpersonal and religous approaches such as Christian counselling. This forum seeks to embrace the diversity of approaches existing in the field. CTA accepts that there are radical differences between the schools and approaches, but it urges us all to work together for a common cause: to prevent the disruption and dismantling of traditional therapy.
Associated wth this website is the Critical Therapy Antidote Network. Membership is open to anyone who shares our concerns and values. Please contact us for further information. Also we are open to contributions in the form of essays, personal testimonies, personal opinion pieces, and alerts for our Critical Therapy Watch blog.
CTA is partnered with Counterweight a liberal humanist organisation founded by bestselling author Helen Pluckrose. Counterweight provides support and assistance to people facing illiberal policies at work, school or university and accessible scholarship exploring Critical Social Justice ideology.