For decades, people have compared Oprah Winfrey to a therapist, thanks to her ability when it comes to asking friends and strangers the most intimate questions about their lives. While promoting The Color Purple on The Drew Barrymore Show this week, though, Winfrey revealed that she actually has “never been to therapy” herself.
“I had all my therapy on the show in front of everybody,” she said, referring to her own show, which started in 1986. She added that when she first came to fame in the ’80s, people didn’t really go to therapy: “Even speaking about therapy on television was taboo, and now everybody has gone to therapy. So I did my therapy in front of everyone at a time when people were still adjusting their consciousness to the idea of accepting somebody else being able to counsel you about your life.”
Ironically, Winfrey’s confession came while she was sitting on Barrymore’s therapylike sofa. Some viewers thought Barrymore — a believer in therapy who loves to get cozy with her guests — got a little too comfortable with Winfrey, at one point leaving her hand on Winfrey’s lap, and at another, interlocking her fingers with Winfrey’s and holding them close to her face for an uncomfortably long moment. But no need to worry. Winfrey said she found the whole thing “endearing” and “comforting.”