Years ago, a therapist said to me,
“I never challenge a client or bring up a deeply-held, difficult topic until I can tell that the person is really close to saying it themselves.”
Years ago, a professor once said to our class,
“When I was training to be a pastoral counselor, I worked with a supervisor and talked my sessions over with him. Once, I had a client who was deeply in denial. It was so obvious. One week, as I was planning for our session, I came up with a process to really tell her the truth and point all that denial out to her. But my supervisor stopped me. He said, “You know, the reason people have defense mechanisms is… they have things they need defending from.”
These are wise forms of care.