mental health for real people


I’m Dr. Duff

I’m Robert, a licensed clinical psychologist based in Southern California, and author of the bestselling Hardcore Self Help book series. I also host a weekly podcast where I address reader questions and interview others in the mental health field.

As featured on:
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Recently on the Duff the Psych

The Hardcore Self Help Podcast Episode 1

In this episode I introduce you to the new podcast and take two Twitter questions and one Reddit question. You can find me on twitter at

First question: Is seven medications for anxiety and depression just crazy?

Second question: What’s the point of getting extensive testing for dementia?

Third question: How to help a family member who has slid back into depression?


As always, check out my books at

March 16, 2016 1

How To Explain Depression | A Letter

How To Explain Depression | A Letter

In my first book, I wrote a letter from the point of view of someone dealing with anxiety. The idea was that you could take that letter verbatim or use it as inspiration to help those people in your life that just don’t “get it” to better understand what it is that you are dealing with. In F**k Depression, I have decided to continue that idea, and came up with a letter on how to explain depression. Please feel free to use it in whatever way might be useful with you. I also included it as a downloadable PDF so you can print and give it to someone in your life.

I also have a letter for those dealing with anxiety. Find it here.


January 10, 2016 32

My Dissertation Results about Internet Therapy


So, today is an awesome day because I finally submitted the final revisions on my doctoral dissertation in clinical psychology and uploaded the final document onto the academic interwebs. That means I AM DONE. No more research. No more school. YAYYYY!! The thing about academia is that it moves slow and it is this weird exclusive club where you need to pay money to journals to get the latest research to help guide your treatment. Pubmed and Google scholar have helped out a bit with giving mere mortals access to academic literature, but there is still quite a barrier. For that reason, I want to share with you, in normal person language, the results of my dissertation research. It’s actually pretty awesome and interesting. 


September 15, 2015 9

How To Explain Anxiety | A Letter

How To Explain Anxiety | A Letter

In my book Hardcore Self Help: F**k Anxiety, I have a chapter about how to explain anxiety to people who just don’t “get it” when it comes to the anxiety that you are experiencing.  An important piece of this chapter is that I wrote out a letter that you can either use for inspiration or print out and give directly to an individual in your life that you would like to better understand. I am also including a printable PDF of that letter here. I sincerely hope that it helps how to explain anxiety better to the people in your life.

I also have a letter for those dealing with depression, which you can find here.


July 5, 2015 14

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