Posted by gardenergirl on May 16, 2004, at 1:21:08
In reply to hanging out a shingle... et al » gardenergirl, posted by 64bowtie on May 15, 2004, at 23:33:43
> You can learn so much from each client. May sound heretical, but think about it.
I don't think this is heretical at all. One of the things I've been doing as part of termination in the last two weeks is sharing with my clients (if appropriate) what I have learned from them. It also amazes me to see a client go through the same phases in therapy as I am. Sometimes, I swear, I have the same session with a client that I had with my T, within weeks of each other.
But then it also is a bit surreal for me to go through stages and functions of therapy (i.e. tranference, getting stuck, getting past initial lily-pad symptoms only to find an ugly toad underneath, etc). It's surreal in that I can step back and observe it happening, and know, to some extent, why it is happening, or at least that it is supposed to happen. For some reason, I think, irrationally, that if I know it is supposed to happen, then it won't happen with me. I'm sure that is some kind of defense. I am always tickled when I recognize what's going on clinically, though (well, maybe not tickled right in the moment, but later.)
But this also helps me to normalize for my clients some of the stuff they are going through. Sometimes I tell them that I have said or felt the same thing in my sessions, before, and that you do get through it.
> My latest that I am grappling with is that if punishment is how to alter a childs awareness, implying the same or worse for the next transgression, society must decide to call adult punishment another term such as retibution or fiscal balancing. Punishment of a true adult will be ignored since there are so many shades of gray present.
Rod, I'm not sure what you mean by "true adult." This is something about your views that I just can't resonate with. Part of my therapy has led to regression(or perhaps includes? I'm not sure how it happens). I'm finding that childhood things like enjoying stomping on fall leaves, twirling in my office chair, acting like a big goofball by singing Elvis Christmas music (in my best Elvis voice), licking the bowl when baking, and walking along a curb as if it were a balance beam are very therapeutic for me. My childhood was spent only receiving validation for behaving like a little adult. We socialized with my parents' friends. My memories of playing as a child do not inlude either of my parents at all. I'm sure I was "supervised" (at least I hope), but they are never *in* the memory.
This is a long way of saying, I guess, that I think the adult/child comparison as rational/irrational which seems to indicate healthy/disordered, feels unfair to me. I see nothing wrong with comparing rational to irrational, as those are words which can be objectively applied. But my childlike qualities are still a part of me, and they are neither rational nor irrational. They just are. And they do not seem to represent irrational versus rational parts of me. If anything, they represent more innocent, simple, authentic parts of me. The me that did not have to be so defended against hurt, until she learned to in time.
I'm sorry you are struggling with and upset by such complex issues as crime and punishment. Gosh, someone could write a book on it! :) However, shades of gray are what makes life rich and human. We are all shades of gray. And pink and blue and green and chartreuse and peach and red and....Imagine how dull everything would be if every concept in the world were black or white? That's why we have ethics, morals, philosophies, psychological theories, different forms of government, different cultures, religions, etc. Life is rich! And complex.
> Believe me I am not thinking about this naively.
I'm sure that you are not naive. You seem to think deeply about a great many things. Things that can twist your brain into various yoga postures. If you aren't careful, and have some playtime, too, you might get stuck in one!
Besides, punishment is a behavioral term. It's applying any aversive stimulus after a behavior to reduce the likelihood of the the behavior happening again. But the stimulus has to be meaningful and perceived as aversive to the behaver. My supervisor claims he can stop my procrastinating by having me pay him a quarter for each time something is late. A quarter! sheesh. With what I spend at Starbuck's I can be a week or more late with my work. A quarter ain't gonna cut it. Now public shame and/or competition? That would work better for me. Avoiding an aversive stimulus (public shame) is quite the motivator for my behavior.
Okay, enough rambling tonight. It's very late, and I am procrastinating as we speak.
Take care Rod. Have some fun tomorrow. Jump in a puddle just to see how big the splash is. I highly recommend it! Or make yourself some fish sticks, peas and onions, and mashed potatoes. Good old childhood comfort food.