Emma Kenny, Jo Hemmings and concerns re "Celebrity psychologists"

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noodle
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Emma Kenny, Jo Hemmings and concerns re "Celebrity psychologists"

Post by noodle » Thu Apr 05, 2012 2:09 pm

I had the unfortunate experience of watching GMTV's resident 'psychologist' this morning - I think a lot of people's perceptions are probably influenced by these kinds of programmes. Her qualifications aren't at all clear from her website:

http://www.ekenny.co.uk/about.html

In terms of TV
:arrow: In the latest series of 'how I met your mother', Robin sees a therapist and then ends up dating him :roll:
:arrow: Desperate housewives - there have been a couple of storylines involving people going to AA meetings and alike. Interesting how going to a 'group' is portrayed and how this influences peoples' perceptions.
:arrow: A BBC three programme called 'Freaky Eaters' which showed people who had a really limited diet going through an intervention delivered by a dietician and psychologist. There were usually issues around anxiety and food for most of the individuals featured.

That's all I can think of for now!

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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by JCBird » Thu Apr 05, 2012 11:01 pm

noodle wrote:I had the unfortunate experience of watching GMTV's resident 'psychologist' this morning - I think a lot of people's perceptions are probably influenced by these kinds of programmes. Her qualifications aren't at all clear from her website:
http://www.ekenny.co.uk/about.html
I just looked her up and it makes me cringe. "Emma Kenny is a qualified and highly experienced practitioner with Psychological and Counselling qualifications recognised by the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy and the British Psychological Society". I did a bit of quick digging and it looks like, as far as I can tell, that the BACP qualification is an Advanced Diploma in Counselling and the BPS qualification is her undergraduate degree... I find it difficult to understand how someone with only those qualifications can go on to be used as an expert psychologist on TV!

Why is it that TV and media "psychologists" rarely seem to be qualified, accredited & regulated psychologists? We seem to steer well clear of these roles leaving the under-qualified to provide a cringeworthy portrayal of psychologists to the masses.. This factor alone of the type of people who are shown in the media as psychologists will surely have a big impact on the publics perceptions of psychologists and their willingness to see one for support...

I particularly like this sentence written on an online profile: "Emma’s insight into the human psyche is unique.". :?

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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by Borrowed Cone » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:04 pm

JCBird wrote:
noodle wrote:I had the unfortunate experience of watching GMTV's resident 'psychologist' this morning - I think a lot of people's perceptions are probably influenced by these kinds of programmes. Her qualifications aren't at all clear from her website:
http://www.ekenny.co.uk/about.html
I just looked her up and it makes me cringe. "Emma Kenny is a qualified and highly experienced practitioner with Psychological and Counselling qualifications recognised by the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy and the British Psychological Society". I did a bit of quick digging and it looks like, as far as I can tell, that the BACP qualification is an Advanced Diploma in Counselling and the BPS qualification is her undergraduate degree... I find it difficult to understand how someone with only those qualifications can go on to be used as an expert psychologist on TV!

Why is it that TV and media "psychologists" rarely seem to be qualified, accredited & regulated psychologists? We seem to steer well clear of these roles leaving the under-qualified to provide a cringeworthy portrayal of psychologists to the masses.. This factor alone of the type of people who are shown in the media as psychologists will surely have a big impact on the publics perceptions of psychologists and their willingness to see one for support...

I particularly like this sentence written on an online profile: "Emma’s insight into the human psyche is unique.". :?
All of this makes me so angry and only supports a move by CPs to split from the BPS. Her behaviour on This Morning could well be considered unethical and I will personally be asking the HPC about her self-misrepresentation as a "psychological" "practitioner".
Last edited by Borrowed Cone on Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:54 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by noodle » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:28 pm

Totally agree Cone. Not representing your qualifications clearly and behaving in a way that doesn't show self awareness or professionalism is certainly not ethical. I really think psychologist should be a protected title. The likelihood is that most of the programmes employing her will think that she is a fully qualified psychologist.

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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by Borrowed Cone » Fri Apr 06, 2012 9:56 pm

noodle wrote:Totally agree Cone. Not representing your qualifications clearly and behaving in a way that doesn't show self awareness or professionalism is certainly not ethical. I really think psychologist should be a protected title. The likelihood is that most of the programmes employing her will think that she is a fully qualified psychologist.
Just edited my post slightly. Unfortunately, if she isn't a BPS member (which I doubt she is), they can't do anything. And even if she was, all they would do is give her a spanking and tell her to stop it.
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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by jane doe » Sat Apr 07, 2012 12:39 pm

Did anyone else see how Emma Kenney spoke to Samantha Brick (the lady who wrote about the drawbacks of being attractive in the Daily Mail) on This Morning on Thursday? I thought it was an appalling example of bullying, and I think I might complain to ITV, but I'm not really sure how to put it just yet...

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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by Borrowed Cone » Sat Apr 07, 2012 12:42 pm

jane doe wrote:Did anyone else see how Emma Kenney spoke to Samantha Brick (the lady who wrote about the drawbacks of being attractive in the Daily Mail) on This Morning on Thursday? I thought it was an appalling example of bullying, and I think I might complain to ITV, but I'm not really sure how to put it just yet...
I should think ITV could care less, but I've written to the HPC about the way she confusingly refers to herself as a practitioner of psychology. I would complain to the BPS but I don't think she's a member! It's really annoying how there seems to be no way of keeping these people in check. Maybe the BPS and BABCP should come out and distance themselves from her behaviour on that program, considering she states on her website that her qualifications are approved by the BPS and BABCP.
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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by jane doe » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:03 pm

You're probably right, Cone - though I'm not sure the BPS/HPC could do anything much about it as she's not pulling off a Gillian McKeith-style fake qualification, just 'sexing up' the one she's got...

I find it embarrassing to think that people might think that she's connected in any way to what I do on a daily basis.

On another note, there was a clinical psychologist on BBC Breakfast last week (I think it was an article on depression) saying that "psychologists take those negative thoughts, and turn them into positive ones"

*facepalm

:oops:

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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by noodle » Sat Apr 07, 2012 1:05 pm

jane doe wrote:Did anyone else see how Emma Kenney spoke to Samantha Brick (the lady who wrote about the drawbacks of being attractive in the Daily Mail) on This Morning on Thursday? I thought it was an appalling example of bullying, and I think I might complain to ITV, but I'm not really sure how to put it just yet...
That's what I saw and what prompted me to post in the first place. Very unprofessional in my opinion.

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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by Peach » Sat Apr 07, 2012 2:34 pm

Here is the interview in case anyone is interested:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c0_CG3rmRYs

I wasn't overly fond of Samantha Brick after reading her article (and no it's not because she's 'beautiful' :P :roll: ) but after seeing that interview I warmed to her and think she handled Emma's harsh reaction to her quite well.
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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by Ruthie » Sat Apr 07, 2012 3:42 pm

I really do not like Emma K's style - what an obnoxious woman and I wish they would protect the term psychologist!! Was there even an inkling of psychological thinking in what she was saying??

Out of curiosity - any suggestions here about what psychology might contribute to this debate or what angle you'd have taken in the interview?
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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by jane doe » Sat Apr 07, 2012 4:35 pm

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree ... omen-media

I liked this - perhaps EK could have made (or attempted to make) some points on, oh, I don't know, ANY of this??

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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by eponymous85 » Sun Apr 08, 2012 4:39 pm

I was infuriated by many of ben goldacre's twitter comments on this, eg:
"massively inappropriate, like so many tv psychologists. the BPS shepherd these people onto the screen, they're a broken org."

"the BPS shepherd these people onto the screen. it's amazing. and they have a huge tantrum if you point that out."

"i guess their leaders eg BPS are preoccupied with exposure at any cost. aric sigman is on their books, for example."

"i'm amazed more psychologists don't rage against this silly tv thing of psychologist as sciencey expert on common sense vagueness"

(re Aric Sigman) "they give his number out to journalists, so it is right that he is strongly associated with your profession. complain to them"
Still not quite sure why this made me angry. My feeling was he knows they're not properly qualified, but deliberately misrepresents them as qualified practitioner psychologists. He does have a point though about the BPS giving their details out to the media as representative experts of the profession.
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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by matt.berlin » Sun Apr 08, 2012 6:56 pm

I wonder how well this appearance fits in with the BPS guidelines for working with the media?
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Re: Therapy/Therapists media portrayal

Post by Borrowed Cone » Sun Apr 08, 2012 9:12 pm

I don't think the BPS had anything to do with this. She has her own company that is clearly in cahoots with various production companies, including the one that produces This Morning and Loose Women.
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