Truth seeker 
Member since Dec 14, 2017


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Re: “Oakland Counseling Guru Accused of Sexual Assault

Grace, I had a similar thought to be honest. I'm guessing one or two of the accusers in the lawsuit jumped on the bandwagon for the reasons you mentioned. The fact they all started finding out that they were just another notch on the belt might add to their desire to take Steve Bearman down. None went to the police immediately afterward. Most never even complained to anyone Interchange it seems and only told their story when asked. But one or two of the cases sounded like the victim was totally incapacitated by the drugs, and that's rape pure and simple. In the end, as a therapist, you have to be on the look out for something called Erotic Transference. This is when a patient/client starts being attracted to you. Part of your job is to not be swayed by this, and stay focussed on the healing of the client. Steve may not have been a licensed therapist, but he was basically acting as one, and not only did he not follow the rules of avoiding Erotic Transference, he encouraged it. Using hallucinogens no less. Not cool.

Posted by Truth seeker on 12/15/2017 at 2:17 AM

Re: “Oakland Counseling Guru Accused of Sexual Assault

I read this article a couple nights ago and I'm still trying to wrap my head around it. I've never met Steve but I've known about him and Interchange for years. I saw him at a party a few years ago and a female friend of mine told me he would date his students. I was like, REALLY? It seemed so bizarre to me, but she was nonchalant about it. I'm now wondering, how is the sex/drug positive culture we're in here in the SF Bay Area contributing to this kind of a situation happening? Why weren't people in leadership roles calling him out on this earlier? Or his business partner Margo Brockman? I mean, everybody involved in counseling or psychology knows about the dangers of transference. The number of people complicit with all this is probably huge. The sex positive community obviously has some major blindspots.

I remember seeing the "Ending Jealousy" course being offered by Interchange a while back. Think about that for a second. Having that as part of your curriculum, and also being "sex positive" is a perfect set up for abuse to happen. Anytime someone rebuffs your advances, you can just say, "Oh, you're not open enough" or "You have more inner work to do, I can help you" etc, etc. Other sex positive people around Steve probably looked the other way because "Hey, look how awesomely open minded we are about sex. It's no big deal that the lead counselor dates his students. We're sex positive and more evolved than all the shame filled normal people out there, it's all good". Boom, THAT'S A BLIND SPOT PEOPLE. Being sex positive doesn't mean that transference won't happen, that abuse won't happen, and that people won't get hurt.

Steve's use of drugs in these assaults is particularly creepy and gross. It's like the Bill Cosby thing, but he got the women to take the drugs voluntarily. That's some high level manipulation there. Some of the victims' accounts are just plain horrendous, and definitely criminal, but a couple of them seemed a little more murky as far as whether an actual crime happened. I found myself getting a little frustrated, I mean, why do they keep going to his bedroom? And getting naked with him? And partying with him, at sex parties?? Ahhh, this is just a big mess. I'm guessing he settles with all the victims out of court. And hopefully never teaches or counsels again, EVER. I have no idea about prison time. Anyone with knowledge about the justice system have any thoughts about that?

Posted by Truth seeker on 12/14/2017 at 8:50 PM

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