Psycho-Babble Psychology Thread 472171

Shown: posts 1 to 25 of 41. This is the beginning of the thread.

 

(so very) afraid to see T

Posted by shrinking violet on March 17, 2005, at 16:27:25

I see my T tomorrow morning for the first time in three weeks. I don't want to go....I'm scared, of being hurt and getting upset again, by her. It's hard enough when I don't see her, but I've gotten through three weeks and I'm definitely in less turmoil than when I am after I see her. I emailed her and tried to tell her to be "gentle" with me....She promised she would, and she said she wishes she knew what she has done. :-( I wish I knew, too. I'm not sure...I just know that seeing her, being with her, everything she says and does, breaks my heart.

She's going to ask questions, she may get angry/demanding/frustrated. I won't be able to answer, probably not even look at her. I'll ask to leave early. She may tell me never to come back. Or she may ask to hug me, and I'll say no even though I'll want to more than anything....

I don't want to go. :-*(

 

Re: (so very) afraid to see T

Posted by annierose on March 17, 2005, at 18:08:02

In reply to (so very) afraid to see T, posted by shrinking violet on March 17, 2005, at 16:27:25

I just replied and it got zapped! Bummer! Anyway, just wanted to let you know I was thinking of you. I vaguely remember your last session you showed her some photos and then she revealed a secret (?) and it really bothered you.

I'm sorry the sessions will be difficult for you.
But you will be happy you went. Good Luck -
Annierose

 

Re: (so very) afraid to see T

Posted by daisym on March 17, 2005, at 20:06:26

In reply to (so very) afraid to see T, posted by shrinking violet on March 17, 2005, at 16:27:25

Sometimes when I feel like you are feeling, it helps to remember that I'm afraid of opening up to the pain again, to the memories and to the loss of what never can be. What I long for, that need for my mommy, is unfulfillable. And my therapist is really honest that he will never fill up that need for me. But in his office, I'm fully aware of the need. And temporarily he makes me feel better. And leaving is excruciatingly painful, especially right now. So sometimes I don't want to go, because I don't want to leave. Does that make sense?

I know you have other issues with your therapist and it is very complicated. But I guess ultimately you have to ask yourself are you avoiding her to avoid your pain, or are you going because of some obligation to her? It makes sense that you would feel less disrupted when you are closed down and not sorting through stuff. But you have to ask yourself why you went into therapy in the first place and if those things are resolved, (along with any new things that might have popped up) then perhaps this is the time to step back. If reading that makes you gasp, hmmm...maybe it isn't time.

Whatever you decide, I'm sorry you are having a tough time.

 

Re: (so very) afraid to see T shrinking violet

Posted by Shortelise on March 17, 2005, at 23:47:44

In reply to (so very) afraid to see T, posted by shrinking violet on March 17, 2005, at 16:27:25

I can't imagine going to see my T with fear that he will be hurtful to me. He has been angry, frustrated and at times impatient, but never really hurtful.

Mostly it has been my perception, what I expected, what I have experienced in the past with people I had grown to trust.

I tend to shove things to the back of my mind when I don't see my T. When I do see him, I have to pull things out and look at them. Ouch.

I hope it goes well. Good for you for going.

Hugs,
ShortE

 

Thinking of you ...take care! (nm)

Posted by Speaker on March 18, 2005, at 9:45:34

In reply to Re: (so very) afraid to see T, posted by daisym on March 17, 2005, at 20:06:26

 

Re: How did your session go? Thinking of you (nm) shrinking violet

Posted by annierose on March 18, 2005, at 14:58:19

In reply to (so very) afraid to see T, posted by shrinking violet on March 17, 2005, at 16:27:25

 

How are you? shrinking violet

Posted by Poet on March 18, 2005, at 17:53:32

In reply to (so very) afraid to see T, posted by shrinking violet on March 17, 2005, at 16:27:25

I know how hard therapy has been for you. Please post how it went or to vent. I'm here for you.

Poet

 

not well

Posted by shrinking violet on March 18, 2005, at 18:54:11

In reply to Re: (so very) afraid to see T, posted by daisym on March 17, 2005, at 20:06:26

Thank you everyone, for your thoughts and replies.

I forced myself to go.....I didn't want to. In fact, I had a dream that I accidentally overslept and missed the session! In the stairwell, on the way to her office, I hesitated, shaking, afraid to go in. But I went, because I had to, and I had already cancelled the past 2 sessions, not including the one she cancelled last week b/c she was sick. I'm under contract with my treatment team to keep all of my appointments, so I really couldn't have skipped without getting into some trouble.

In the almost 2 years of seeing her, this was probably the worst session ever. It lasted about 25 minutes. I didn't look at her the whole time. I sat there, staring at my sleeve. I either ignored her questions or answered in one or two words, except for when she asked me something (I cannot recall the wording right now) and I answered "I didn't want to come today." It was evident she was frustrated, hurt, confused. Finally after almost a half hour, she gave up, said for me to call the center when I decided whether I wanted to finish the semester sitting with her or the director (who I don't really like, I met him once, and I know I'd never talk to him). Then I got up and left....

...and, as per usual, I sobbed in the stairwell, my heart bleeding, and instead of going to work I came home and cried some more, spent the day under a blanket on the couch. I'm sort of surprised and a little disillusioned that I was that upset anyway....I thought my defenses would have protected me from the usual meltdown I have when I leave her, but it didn't. I realized then that whether I make these last couple of months unpleasant for both of us, or whether I try to make them as memorable and special as I can, the end is going to come anyway.....Sounds rather like a "duh" moment, but, I honestly think all of this time I convinced myself that I could somehow stop the end from coming if I acted angry enough, or at least stop it from affecting me so deeply. But I can't.

So I came home and wrote her a six page word processed document....I told her everything: how much she means to me, how hard this is, why I'm reacting this way, how the therapy has become an intrusion at this point, how our "relationship" has -- for me -- transcended the therapy, how angry I am at her for feeling like she manipulated me into attaching to her, and the realization I came to above. I haven't heard from her, and I didn't really expect to. In a way, I'm glad she hasn't responded yet, because I'd rather her process it thoroughly first and, given it's the weekend, I don't want to be slapped with yet another hurtful response and then deal with it on my own all weekend. It's hard, though, not knowing how she received it, and how she's going to react to it. My response in itself may effectively end the therapy with her, if she feels she's hurting more than helping. But I can't control that, I guess....I could only be honest with her, and tell her what was in my heart. I would post it here, just for some feedback but....it's rather long, so I won't burden anyone on the board with my blatherings.

I'm tired and sore, my eyes hurt, I'm weary...but in an odd way I'm sort of relieved that I sent her what I did, and got it all out. I just hope this can be fixed in some way, and that I don't screw up this termination with her.

Thanks again everyone.
SV

 

Re: not well shrinking violet

Posted by pinkeye on March 18, 2005, at 19:38:50

In reply to not well, posted by shrinking violet on March 18, 2005, at 18:54:11

Take care SV.
The emotional attachment to the therapist is very hard to deal with in therapy, both for the client and the therapist.

I don't know too much how to deal with attachment myself.

Don't have much of an input here, just wanted to tell you to take care.

 

(((((SV))))) (nm)

Posted by gardenergirl on March 18, 2005, at 20:02:51

In reply to Re: not well shrinking violet, posted by pinkeye on March 18, 2005, at 19:38:50

 

(((((violet))))) (nm)

Posted by Shortelise on March 19, 2005, at 0:25:55

In reply to not well, posted by shrinking violet on March 18, 2005, at 18:54:11

 

Re: not well shrinking violet

Posted by Susan47 on March 19, 2005, at 0:44:38

In reply to not well, posted by shrinking violet on March 18, 2005, at 18:54:11

It's good you wrote to her, shrinking violet. It's really really good. I'm glad you were able to do that. (((SV))) Big hugs.

 

Re: not well

Posted by annierose on March 19, 2005, at 7:29:19

In reply to Re: not well shrinking violet, posted by Susan47 on March 19, 2005, at 0:44:38

I agree with Susan. I think it's good that you opened your heart and told her why going to therapy is so difficult, that you're really afraid of losing her when you graduate. Let us know how she responds.

 

Re: not well: SV

Posted by Susan47 on March 19, 2005, at 10:02:47

In reply to Re: not well, posted by annierose on March 19, 2005, at 7:29:19

You know I hope she can respond to your writing, because it's obvious that's all you can do right now and if she's astute and wise, I'm thinking she'll respond to what you wrote, always, and build the trust that way until you're ready for more. Interacting with her should not be, in the end, a torture session. As a professional, she should know how to make it more and more safe for you over time. One more for good measure, okay? (((SV)))

 

Re: not well shrinking violet

Posted by Poet on March 19, 2005, at 12:15:18

In reply to not well, posted by shrinking violet on March 18, 2005, at 18:54:11

Hi SV,

You wrote: I honestly think all of this time I convinced myself that I could somehow stop the end from coming if I acted angry enough, or at least stop it from affecting me so deeply. But I can't.

I don't think that's a "duh" moment. I think it's a try to face something you're afraid of moment. Therapy ending is frightening, though in my case, continuing therapy is frightening, too.

As much as I try harder to get my T to abandon me than I do to let her help me, I don't know what I would do if therapy had an actual completion date.

Talk about pressure. You are under this pressure, and that has to be so difficult, especially when like me, you stare at your shoes more than you talk. The last session my T said "should we just stare at each other in silence for the next 20 minutes?" I said I wanted to leave, but didn't. I think I understand why you did. You probably felt you were just wasting her time. My T says what little I say is never a waste, yours would say the same, it's believing it that is hard. Too hard sometimes.

I told my T I would mail her my notes (I've brought them to the last two sessions, but wouldn't read them.) I am going to try to do it today. Drop them in the mail box and then I can't retrieve them or destroy them.

Try not to be afraid of what you wrote to your T. Be proud that you had the courage to send it.

Take care.

Poet

 

How are you today? shrinking violet

Posted by Shortelise on March 19, 2005, at 12:44:48

In reply to not well, posted by shrinking violet on March 18, 2005, at 18:54:11

Violet, I have to say that I think your T is missing the boat here a little.

We re-enact things with our T's. You could be doing that, and I don't see how she could be missing it.

Hugs
ShortE

 

thanks for the hugs pinkeye, shortelise! (nm)

Posted by shrinking violet on March 19, 2005, at 17:59:09

In reply to (((((violet))))) (nm), posted by Shortelise on March 19, 2005, at 0:25:55

 

Re: gardenergirl

Posted by shrinking violet on March 19, 2005, at 18:04:11

In reply to (((((SV))))) (nm), posted by gardenergirl on March 18, 2005, at 20:02:51


Thank you GG.....

Since you're sort of on both sides of the fence, having experience as both a client and a therapist, I'd be open to hearing whether you have any opinions, insights, thoughts on my T or/and my situation or time with her. Up to you, of course, if you want to share, either here or in babblemail, or not at all. :-) Given some of my doubts about this whole experience with her, and from what others have told me, here and otherwise, it would be interesting to hear another T's perspective on my T's conduct.....But, again, no pressure at all...I just thought I'd throw the option out there for you.

Thanks for the hug, I appreciate it!

SV

 

Re: not well Poet

Posted by shrinking violet on March 19, 2005, at 18:12:57

In reply to Re: not well shrinking violet, posted by Poet on March 19, 2005, at 12:15:18

>> Talk about pressure. You are under this pressure, and that has to be so difficult, especially when like me, you stare at your shoes more than you talk. The last session my T said "should we just stare at each other in silence for the next 20 minutes?" I said I wanted to leave, but didn't. I think I understand why you did. You probably felt you were just wasting her time. My T says what little I say is never a waste, yours would say the same, it's believing it that is hard. Too hard sometimes.

--Thank you Poet. Yes, that is probably part of it.....that I've wasted all of this time not talking, and now that the end is near and I'm STILL not engaging much with her (actually less, if that's even possible) I think we both feel this pressure and it's very difficult. I left because my T told me to.....I wanted to, yes, and it wouldn't have been the first time I've gotten up and left during a session, but maybe some part of me still held out some hope that she would say the "right" thing, or that I would be able to bring down my defenses long enough to at least tell her why I was so angry with her....but neither of those things happened, and she was clearly distant and frustrated, to say the least, so she asked me whether I wanted to see her every week or every two. I told her I didn't know...Her questions were irritating me at that point b/c I didn't want to talk to her at all, didn't want to even hear her voice, so at first I tried ignoring it. And I didn't know the answer. Finally she said if I answered her I could leave. I told her I didn't know. She said, oh I thought you would know the answer to that one right away. Then she said when I figured it out to call the center, and to think about whether I wanted to finish the semester with her or the director, then she said I could go. So I left. :-(


>> I told my T I would mail her my notes (I've brought them to the last two sessions, but wouldn't read them.) I am going to try to do it today. Drop them in the mail box and then I can't retrieve them or destroy them.

--Good for you Poet! Have you sent them yet? I hope you do...Let me know if I can do anything to help.


>> Try not to be afraid of what you wrote to your T. Be proud that you had the courage to send it.

--Thanks, but....I admit I am very afraid now. I wrote a lot.....and I'm not sure how she's going to take it. I have a bad feeling that she's going to tell me she can't see me anymore or, worse, I'll hear it from someone else, or a letter in the mail. She isn't back to work until Tuesday, since it's the weekend and she has Mondays off, so...I have quite a wait, and even then there's nothing to say she'll respond that day anyway, if at all. So, yeah, I'm scared. Every time I try to reach out to her, tell her how I feel, it get rebuked for it in some way, so I'm afraid....I just wish I knew what she was thinking.

Thanks for the support. :-)

Peace,
SV

 

Re: not well annierose

Posted by shrinking violet on March 19, 2005, at 18:14:13

In reply to Re: not well, posted by annierose on March 19, 2005, at 7:29:19

> I agree with Susan. I think it's good that you opened your heart and told her why going to therapy is so difficult, that you're really afraid of losing her when you graduate. Let us know how she responds.


Thank you.....IF she responds. :-/ I'm scared either way. But I guess it's better than not saying anything at all and having her wonder and having this big rift between us....I don't know, I'm still afraid of her reaction. Thank you for your thoughts.

Peace,
SV

 

Re: How are you today? Shortelise

Posted by shrinking violet on March 19, 2005, at 18:20:35

In reply to How are you today? shrinking violet, posted by Shortelise on March 19, 2005, at 12:44:48


Well, in her defense, she did ask me if being angry with her is the only way I can say goodbye to her, the way I have with other relationships in the past. However, with my other relationships, the other person would leave without my knowledge and the anger would come later in response to the hurt I felt. With her, I know beforehand that my time with her is going to end, but I guess I'm still using the anger to deal with the pain, so I do think she is aware of it at least a little. The thing is, even though she may understand it logically, she seems to react to it emotionally and take it personally. I'm not really sure why.....she must have her own issues with anger, although she has told me that other clients have been angry with her and it's part of the process sometimes. But maybe since I'm angry with her quite a lot, and never seem to move past it, maybe she's reacting to that.....

She also said that she thinks I want her to feel like she's failed me, that I want her to take all of the responsibility for this relationship....I was pretty taken aback by that, that she would actually think I would want her to feel that way. I addressed this in the letter to her also, but, just the fact that she thinks that says a lot about how she may perceive me, and how she also might be resentful of the fact that I caused her to question her competencies as a clinician. I don't know.....

I hate that I'm messing this up so much, though.....I so wish I could be different. :-(

Thank you,
SV

> Violet, I have to say that I think your T is missing the boat here a little.
>
> We re-enact things with our T's. You could be doing that, and I don't see how she could be missing it.
>
> Hugs
> ShortE

 

Re: How are you today? shrinking violet

Posted by gardenergirl on March 19, 2005, at 18:43:39

In reply to Re: How are you today? Shortelise, posted by shrinking violet on March 19, 2005, at 18:20:35

Hi SV,
I'm thinking back to much earlier posts when you two were getting on well. So well, in fact, that it seemed as if you two were going to wind up friends. I know at the time I was concerned about your T's boundaries at the time. I was concerned that she was too emotionally attached to you and she was letting it show to you too much. I wondered about the quality of the supervision she was getting. Please correct me if my memory of your earlier experience with her is not accurate. Because my perception now is colored by that.

> Well, in her defense, she did ask me if being angry with her is the only way I can say goodbye to her, the way I have with other relationships in the past. ... With her, I know beforehand that my time with her is going to end, ...The thing is, even though she may understand it logically, she seems to react to it emotionally and take it personally.

It does seem like this is going on. She seems to be just as frustrated as you are. I think that what should be really happening is that your t should be working through this with you, helping you to undertand this pattern. Instead, she's feeding it in a way. She's giving you ultimatums, such as well, come back when you are ready to talk to me, and well, it's me or the boss, which I'm sure is oh so appealing to you. It's kind of like saying "you're in trouble, missy." At least that is how it sounds to me. I'm thinking of my own T, who responded to my no-showing about a month ago by gently asking me why I might be angry with him. It was very non-threatening. It was an invitation to explore it with him, versus a challenge or a pout kind of thing. That's what I wish I was seeing from your T.

>But maybe since I'm angry with her quite a lot, and never seem to move past it, maybe she's reacting to that.....

It could be. She may be quite frustrated at what she perceives as your lack of movement. I wonder if you two are on the same page as to what the goal of therapy is? I mean really and truly. I am thinking of another client I had with anorexia who really was ambivalent about change. She could say all the right things, but her body language and her behaviors suggested that she really wasn't ready to actively fight this. So what we really needed to work on was the ambivalence first. No sense us working on strategies for changing eating behaviors if she was not committed to them. First we needed to get the committment. I dont' know if that relates to your situation at all, but where someone is on the continuum of stages of change is really important. And if the T and the client are working from different stages, it's not at all effective, and leads to much frustration.
>
> She also said that she thinks I want her to feel like she's failed me, that I want her to take all of the responsibility for this relationship....

This could be some projection and counter-transference on her part. It could be that she feels like a failure for the relationship since it appears to have deteriorated. I'm glad you addressed that in your letter.
>
> I hate that I'm messing this up so much, though.....I so wish I could be different.

I can imagine that is an awful feeling. I hope you are sharing that with her as well. Because you two are supposed to be partners on this journey. So it's not either one's fault completely. Whatever has happened, it's happened to and from both of you. Is there any chance you could get a consult from another clinician at the site or from her supervisor? It may help you two sort this out in time for some resolution before your time is up.

I do hope things improve. If you want more info. on the stages of change please let me know. I'd be glad to babblemail them to you. The theory is from Prochaska. She may already be familiar with him. I find it a very useful way of looking at things when it seems like therapy is not moving forward. It's a safe way of looking at it that doesn't focus so much on the relationship, which can be very loaded with emotion and confusion.

Take care, sweetie.

gg

 

Re: How are you today? gardenergirl

Posted by LG04 on March 20, 2005, at 13:12:54

In reply to Re: How are you today? shrinking violet, posted by gardenergirl on March 19, 2005, at 18:43:39

gg, can you email me the stuff about stages of change? that sounds very interesting to me.

Thanks!
LG04

 

Re: How are you today?

Posted by gardenergirl on March 20, 2005, at 22:31:28

In reply to Re: How are you today? gardenergirl, posted by LG04 on March 20, 2005, at 13:12:54

I'd be glad to. Can you turn your babblemail on or give me your email address please?

gg

 

Re: How are you today? gardenergirl

Posted by LG04 on March 21, 2005, at 0:55:16

In reply to Re: How are you today?, posted by gardenergirl on March 20, 2005, at 22:31:28

i don't know what babblemail is. how do i turn it on?


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