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Re: I'm a therapy weakling DAisym

Posted by Dinah on August 21, 2007, at 8:05:26

In reply to Re: I'm a therapy weakling, posted by DAisym on August 21, 2007, at 1:15:13

My therapist has always said that when he pushes, I bite. When I try to encourage him to push me, he's very reluctant and when he does and I respond badly he says the therapeutic equivalent of "I told you so" and refuses to push again.

I think therapists have to work on a client by client basis, to find the right blend of support and change. My therapist's style may work well for me because I tend to take what he does and eventually incorporate it. Or I'll challenge his acceptance myself.

<<<<<<But I have never looked sick, or upset. I've kept the fearful child hidden and secret. I felt like I was doing the right thing by finding this part of me and letting her talk. Now it turns out I'm supposed to keep her quiet.

I don't think that's a fair conclusion from whatever he might have said. He's never encouraged you to keep any part of you quiet. It might feel that way, but I doubt the feelings reflect reality.

FWIW, if you can work really hard on identifying what you're feeling in the moment, it really can help. Sometimes I can't identify the actual feeling, but I've worked hard at being able to say "I don't understand what I'm feeling or why I'm feeling it, but I'm feeling pretty upset right now." I think I learned to do it by noticing cues that meant I was feeling something, or covering up some feeling, and then using creative visualization to open the doors to the feeling itself. It makes *such* a difference. While I'm certainly not perfect at it, and still get time delayed responses to therapy, when I do manage it it saves me the time between sessions stewing and adding layer upon layer to what he actually did say. And since he usually can calm me down anyway, it's easier to do it all at once.

I understand why you're feeling hurt. A push to change always seems to include an implication that you aren't fine just as you are. And that doesn't feel good. If you can, remember that your therapist isn't saying you aren't fine to him just as you are. He's worried that you aren't fine to *you* just as you are. While he may be totally accepting, he'd also like to push here and there to make your life better for yourself, not to make you more pleasing to him.

And I've got to say, complete and total acceptance can be a bit frustrating after a while. My therapist smiling with affection and saying "I know..." was nice for a bit, but then I wanted to shake him and say that I knew he knew, but that didn't help me change!

Or at least those are my two cents, based on my experience, and may be totally off the mark.

(BTW, my therapist does draw the line at suggesting that any part of me should show itself less. He's no idiot.)




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