• Margaret Curtis, MD

Cheaper Than Therapy

Updated: Jan 30, 2019

The best gig I have had since medical school was writing ad copy (I had some pretty good gigs before medical school too, but that’s a different story). My husband had a Friday afternoon vasectomy clinic, and he advertised in the local paper. My finest work included:

Cheaper than college tuition.

Is your minivan full?

No worries. Mate.

I wanted to run a holiday ad that read “Season’s Greetings from Dr. Nomar Kidz and Dr. Snippy D. Toob” but husband thought that was inappropriate. Some people don’t understand the creative process.

My absolute favorite, that we still quote to this day, was: Cheaper Than Therapy. Cheaper Than Therapy has come to mean any expense that is not strictly necessary but will keep us happy, or just sane(ish). This is a pretty dull blade and you could use Cheaper Than Therapy to justify a lot of expensive things – I’m sure a vacation in Fiji would keep me sane – but you have to play by the rules here. It has to be cheap.

a tropical beach
No cheating.

A few things that are Cheaper Than Therapy:

Pets. Costs can add up, sure, but pets also give us companionship and a reason to get outside every day. Lots of data to show that pet owners live longer, are happier etc.

dog and cat
Meet the team.

Exercise. Can be the cost of a pair of sneakers. Good for mind and body.

A babysitter or a cleaning service. If you are overworked or have little kids at home, household help can be a godsend. I used to pay a babysitter so I could ride my bike.

What is not cheaper than therapy, but you should do anyway, is therapy. If you need it, or you and your partner need it, go get it. Pay out of pocket if you have to. Life is complicated, our jobs are ridiculously demanding, and a good therapist can mean the difference between surviving and thriving.

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