• About John Porterfield

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    I am a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist (MFC 35445) and a certified Jungian analyst specializing in individual and couples psychotherapy and psychoanalysis.

    Since I was a young boy, I’ve always loved to hear stories friends told about their lives. If one of my friends was having a problem, I always did my best to understand, to ask questions that sometimes brought insight and reassurance. I was sensitive and curious; perhaps overly for my age. I didn’t tell my own stories often. I walked through life with a smile on my face, but there was turbulence and struggles beneath the surface that I withheld. All these factors now make it clear that I was born to be a therapist. Although I didn’t realize it for a long time.

    First I became a television writer. At 29, I was the Co-Head Writer of Search for Tomorrow, the longest running daytime drama on TV (35 years, at that time). My producer was 34, so sometimes when we were developing a new storyline, we would be unfamiliar with some of the show’s backstories. Fortunately, SFT was my grandmother’s favorite soap opera — it had been for decades. So, when we were deep into a new plot twist and wondering if we were being consistent with the past, my producer would say, “time to call Grandma.”

    Grandma, thrilled to be involved, always remembered the life stories of all the characters. Grandma also loved our leading man, John Aniston, who was the father of Jennifer, who in those days was a pretty little girl with a big future.

    Years later, I wrote for General Hospital, a show in which many of the characters had corrupt values. They were malicious, engaged in endless conflicts and betrayals, jealousies and affairs, secrets and lies. I found success in my work by probing into the shadowy inner world of these characters. With my imagination and intuition, I dug into the darkness of their motivations and their cruel, pathological behaviors.

    I was driven by a fierce, critical internal voice that prodded me to push myself to exhaustion for ratings and the rewards of professional recognition. I wrote and rewrote storylines depicting evil manipulations and emotional and psychological abuse. I participated in creating hundreds of episodes of twisted human relationships, watched daily by millions of viewers who, like my grandmother, grew addicted to the tales I was telling.

    Inside of me, however, I had a growing uneasiness, an awareness that I was not doing work that would leave the world a better place. Slowly, painfully, I acknowledged that I was dedicating years of my life to spreading poison. This will be my legacy, I realized.

    I found myself in a classic and horrific “mid-life crisis.”

    I began therapy with a wise and caring Jungian analyst. We explored my history, the facets of myself that were repressed, buried in my unconscious. With time, I was able to see beyond the defensive fog of my own making and reflect on my true self. I was able to overcome my fears and insecurities, to silence my harsh, inner critical voice. In its place, I developed a voice of self-compassion. My authenticity was liberated and my life changed.

    I have now worked as a psychotherapist and Jungian analyst for 25 years. It has been my privilege to provide a supportive environment for clients to bring their personal challenges and concerns.

    Talking openly about one’s difficulties can start to ease them more quickly than might be imagined.

    I invite you to call me for a free consultation.


    Are you ready to take the first step?

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