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Of nightmares and transference and shame

Posted by Racer on July 25, 2006, at 21:30:35

Apologies in advance, this is likely to run long. Even for me...

Some of you remember that I had a bad experience in treatment about two years ago. It left some pretty significant scars, which really haven't healed. I still have nightmares from time to time about the agency involved, the therapist, the administrative people, and sometimes even the psychopharmacologist. The last nightmare I had was while I was visiting GG, nearly two months ago.

Well, the agency that was involved just sent us a bill, for services in 2005. Mind you, I hadn't been seen since August 2004, so any charges past that time are either fraudulent, or mistaken. And, since the county actually paid for almost everything, the bills should have been going to the county, not to me. So, one way and another, this is probably incompetence, not fraud. Still, it's like a slap in the face to me.

I think the reminder in the form of a bill is what triggered my latest nightmare about them. I can't even tell you what it was about -- I just woke up upset by it, and knowing the pdoc was involved in it. I can imagine the general theme, though.

Aside from the upset itself, I'm also ashamed that I'm not over it. It's been nearly two years now, that's longer than I was being treated there -- AND I'M STILL NOT OVER IT. It's still hard for me, it's still there at the back of my mind, and it still sends me into Back-Of-The-Closet mode, trying to hide myself. I can feel it when I give up on meds, not bothering to call the doctor since it'll only make things worse for me, make the doctor stop trying to help me, just like what happened at the agency. That sort of thing. I hate this feeling, and I hate that it makes me feel as though I'm being a capital V Victim. I don't want to be a Victim. I want to be strong enough to take care of myself.

Anyway, today we got the results of the midterm I took yesterday. I didn't do as well as I had expected, and even though it was still in A range, I was just devastated. The instructor wrote the scores on the board, and suggested that some of the class might want to think hard about dropping the class and taking it over in the Fall semester. I actually found I was thinking about doing exactly that. And I had an A. Even after I added up all the points I'd missed -- on the midterm, the quizzes, and the homework -- and subtracted them from the number of points I could miss and still get an A, I still didn't feel good about my grade. Or about myself, really.

What I managed to put together, though -- this is the insight I wanted to share -- is that those two stories go together: I transferred the upset from the nightmare to the test. Yes, I'm always disappointed with myself when I don't do well on a test. But not like this. Not "I should just drop out of school -- again -- because I'm just a loser who can't do it right anyway. There's no hope for me, so I should just give up." Not that bad. That sort of thinking/feeling comes from what I'm not getting over from that agency. It's where I get upset about something and think I should just give up, since no one will listen to me anyway, and if I try to do anything at all, it will just get worse.

After class, I did call my T, and left a message. That upsets me, too, that I felt the need to tell her about it all right then -- that I couldn't just wait until tomorrow, when I see her. I feel needy, and childish, and BAD for calling her. After all, I'm supposed to be able to do these things for myself, no one is going to do it for me. Etc. (Guess where that comes from?)

I did leave that on the message, though, too. "Hi, I really feel uncomfortable that I felt the need to call you with this, but I do, so here goes..."

Anyway. That's my story, and I'm sticking with it.




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