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Questions about transference

Posted by lonelygirl on March 19, 2004, at 2:00:16

In reply to Do you and your t. say l love you ever?, posted by KindGirl on March 11, 2004, at 18:06:26

Hmm, where to begin? I have been to several psychologists and psychiatrists over the last 10 years or so, never of my own volition. My parents forced me in jr. high and high school and even now (I am in college), make me take Prozac and go to a psychiatrist for refills a couple of times a year (except I don't actually take the meds, but that's another whole topic, I guess!).

Anyway, I recently got in trouble at school and was forced to go to counseling at the student health center as my punishment. The way it works there is that one goes to an initial consultation/evaluation, and if recommended for treatment, one goes on a waiting list and is assigned to the next counselor with an opening. My initial consultation was with a psychologist who had recently (about 6 months earlier) earned his Ph.D. from the same school, but did not have a license.

Between the time of my consultation and getting on the waiting list, he had finished his licensing requirements, so I got assigned to him (actually, he later told me that he had requested for me to be assigned to him). He recommended 6 sessions. Needless to say, I was not happy about the circumstances of being forced to go to counseling, and I just wanted to get it over with. That, combined with the fact that I am a very reserved person, made me a bit uncooperative. I didn't have a very good opinion of psychologists in general, so I didn't have a very positive attitude about the counseling (or the psychologist himself) from the beginning, but I thought the psychologist was nice, so I gradually became more and more comfortable with him. By the time the mandatory counseling was over, I had begun to feel attracted to him, and though I had intended all along to stop after I finished my "sentence," I would miss him too much, so I ended up continuing anyway.

Well, that was a long-winded background to introduce my actual question... I have not told him how I feel about him, and I am actually quite embarrassed about feeling this way. Searching on this phenomenon was actually what brought me to this web site. I had never realized that this "transference" was so common, accepted, and even welcomed by some psychologists. Still, I definitely do not feel comfortable telling this guy how I feel (he is married, by the way, and I know there is no chance of an actual relationship with him) -- especially because I am overweight and unattractive and have been rejected by every guy I have ever liked.

I feel tortured by these feelings that I can't even tell him. I know that he does not feel this way about me, and I suspect that he may actually DISLIKE me. I told him about my latter suspicion, and he tried to convince me that it was not true. He complimented me in very personal, meaningful, and seemingly sincere ways that only cemented my feelings for him. He also said that he feels "drawn to" me when I open up to him (because I was very reserved and unforthcoming initially) and he feels "close to" me when I talk about things with him. But he has certainly never said anything close to "I love you," and I get the feeling he would be uncomfortable with that surfacing from me. I know that his theoretical orientation is in cognitive-behavioral and interpersonal psychology, and I have read in a couple of places that cognitive-behavioral does not believe in "transference." Is this true? If so, how does the cognitive-behavioral approach (or the interpersonal approach) consider these types of feelings of a patient for her psychologist? What is recommended by this approach when these feelings occur? I was advised by someone at another web site (a M.SW. therapist) to consider seeing a female psychologist instead because my feelings for my male psychologist are "sabotaging" the therapy.

I hope somebody made it through this long, rambling post and will be kind enough to respond... thanks.




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