Psycho-Babble Medication | about biological treatments | Framed
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Re:Therapy Relationship

Posted by Jen on April 17, 1999, at 9:32:03

I'm hoping some of you professionals who are therapists can let me in on what therapy is like from your end.
I've been in therapy for a little over a year now. I felt this therapist and I "clicked" right from the beginning. What has always amazed me is how incredibly in tune he is every second and how it registers on his face. Early on when I would tell stories from my past with no emotion whatsoever registering from me, sometimes even laughing (nervously I guess) about stuff that was pretty lousy, emotion would register on his face. He'd look sad or touched, at times would touch the corner of his eye which I thought was perhaps wiping the beginning of a tear. I have been bowled over by how this person sees everything from my perspective in a way that no one ever has. And so I, someone who was pretty out of touch with my feelings, was able to begin to feel things. Maybe too much so, because I started getting sadder and sadder to the point where I couldn't sleep and was always on the verge of crying (though I never can cry - that's part of the problem) and just feeling like I had gotten into some deep dark place I couldn't get out of. Anyway, now I've also seen a psychiatrist and am on Serzone and can sleep again and feel better and am still in therapy. The question is, i just can't figure out what this is like for the therapist. He is so emotionally right there with me. Or so it seems. But how can someone be that way for 20 or 30 or 40 people a week, whatever amount he sees? Which makes me think that maybe what seems like tremendous caring and compassion is maybe just a lot of polished professional technique. Smoke and mirrors. Slight of hand. Like a professional magician creating amazing illusions. I have developed a very strong attachment to him - no illusions of it being any more than it is, I am quite clear on reality and the boundaries. But I have a strong attachment, and I'm just trying to figure out what it's like from the other side. What do therapists feel for their clients? He has complimented me on how hard I work at this and on some changes I've made, and I know that must be gratifying for him, but he never states his feelings which I know they shouldn't. I know my feelings are transference and we should and do talk about them and his are countertransference and he's not supposed to talk about them. Sometimes I feel like I must be a burden - who would want to keep listening to me? But he is so kind and so right there. But can the caring be real when you have to dish it out hour after hour, day after day, to dozens of people? Do they form attachments to us as well, or do they create this illusion of caring so we will spill our guts, get attached, have this transference thing going on, do what we have to do for ourselves and ultimately move on. Do they form attachments to us? Do they really care? How can they care about so many people? Is it all just a lot of manipulation and carefully crafted professional technique?
Sorry this is so long.




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