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Re: Not at all attached to my new T

Posted by pegasus on March 28, 2005, at 21:28:29

In reply to Not at all attached to my new T, posted by pinkeye on March 28, 2005, at 16:51:24

pinkeye, I also feel a lot less attached to my new T than to my old T. My old T moved away, which felt very much like a betrayal. I've been seeing my new T for about a year now. I really don't think about her as a person much at all. I used to be totally obsessed with my old T as a person. I wanted to know everything about him, and everything he said was critically important to me. I'd have conversations in my head with him. It mattered a lot to me what he thought of me. I don't have any of those feelings with my new T.

I've asked them both what they think of this. Basically, they agree that I was so attached to my old T because he was the first person I ever talked to about a lot of secret things. Before I was willing to do that I did a lot of testing of our relationship so I could trust him. That made the relationship very important to me, because I invested a lot of effort into it. And then when I started talking about the big stuff, he helped me contain a lot of that, which no one else in my life ever had. So it was a big hit when he left.

I didn't have to go through all of that with my new T. I had developed some skills in talking about my secret stuff, and I didn't end up doing nearly as much testing of the relationship. And she wasn't the first or only person to know my secrets.

From what you've said, it sounds like you know that you desperately don't want to attach to this new T. You've decided that it's not worth the risk. So, that's got to be part of why you aren't attaching to her. I think we do have some control over our attachments.

What worries me about what you say are the assumptions you have about your old T's feelings. I don't know the story of how you lost him. But it's generally a pretty radical conclusion that a therapist has no feelings for his clients. I think most therapists care very deeply about all of their clients. That has been my experience with friends and acquaintances who are therapists. I don't think it makes their lives hell at all when they care. I think it makes their lives livable. How could you help so many people if you didn't care about any of them? You'd have to be a pretty cynical person.

In my own case, I've been very angry and hurt by my old T moving away. But I've come to see a lot of the things he said and did at the end as evidence that he was really trying to do everything he could to make it easier for me (my evil voice says, ha! easy?! what a laugh). I think it was really difficult for him to leave, even if he didn't talk about that to me (probably because it was his own issue and not part of my therapy).

Have you tried talking to your new T about your lack of attachment to her? I wonder what she might say about it.

Anyway, that's just my perspective. As I said, I don't know your story and it may be a totally different scenario. I hope you are able to get a lot out of your current therapy, regardless of whether you end up attaching to your T more strongly.





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