Posted by antigua3 on June 18, 2009, at 10:06:01
In reply to P.S., posted by Amelia_in_StPaul on June 17, 2009, at 21:37:04
Now for you, my dear.
You're absolutely right about what you've said, abut the invalidation and how therapists hurt already emotionally vulnerable people. My pdoc does do that at times. I recognize it.
But in my case, you have to recognize that he is the very first male T that I've opened up to and have ever felt safe (for the most part). I have undergone many types of adjunct therapy through the years with my own T and this pdoc's CBT approach has been the only one that has really worked.
I have had terrible experiences with male Ts, and men in general, in my life. I have experienced painful transferences with male Ts that have devastated me, mostly because of being abandoned, and have experienced transference with males throughout my life that have never been resolved. So, in going into therapy with this pdoc, I knew what I was doing, given his approach, attitude, etc. I experienced negative transference for years, and once I fully realized what I was doing (and testing him had a lot to do with this), I was able to stop this self-destructive pattern.
He hung in there with me through some awful behavior on my part. He gets a few points for that.
But, he has many faults in my eyes, and it has been hard separating out what belongs with me, and what he is responsible for. I'm still learning.
Yes, we've discussed transference a lot and we seem to view it differently is all I can say. He sees a typical transference reaction while I have guarded myself against having any sexual transference with him because I know how harmful that would be for me. As he says, I "realized" the Oedipus complex, so I'm very savvy about not transfering these feelings onto him. Simply put, at this point, I do not have these feelings for him. I don't long for him and I don't want him, which I've told him. Recently, he brought up the "I'm not available" part and that was hurtful because, in fact, I don't want him.
Yes, until we come to understand why transference is happening with a particular person, we are practically defenseless in having it happen. It just happens sometimes and as patients we need to come to understand why and work through it. If my pdoc continues to deflect this issue, then I will know that this part of therapy cannot work with him.
But, I've made huge progress, and I'm proud of it. Sometimes almost in spite of what he says or does because I have my T, who helps me sort through what is going on.
As both my pdoc and I agree, if I walk out that door, I will walk out knowing that I am much better off. But he says I'm not done yet, and these transference issues need to be resolved and while I can't say I have confidence they will be fully resolved, or could ever possibly be with him, I'm not leaving until I get what I need. That's a strength I never knew I had.
But I do agree with you. But I also understand that given my history, I could be misunderstanding him, and we are fighting for the relationship. Maybe in different ways, which is really important to consider, but I've never made it this far with a male authority figure and I know a part of me wants to "win", if that makes any sense, and I won't leave until I've won, or thrown in the towel believing that I gave it my best effort. That may be the best it gets, but I'm not there yet.
I know I didn't really answer you, and it appears like I'm defending my pdoc, which given my history is a natural response, but I do agree with what you've said.