Psycho-Babble Psychology Thread 668954

Shown: posts 1 to 21 of 21. This is the beginning of the thread.

 

Paying to have my heart professionally broken

Posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 10:53:23


Just thinking about that quote from "In Session." It's ringing especially true for me right now. I had a really good double session yesterday but I still feel so hopeless about this whole thing. I am falling more and more in love with my T and it's seeming more and more impossible that I ever will fall in love with anyone other than an older, straight, female, married therapist (of mine). It's really sad because I want her to hold me and touch me and spend more time with me and she never will.

My heart is broken and it has been for years.

We talked about this yesterday. She has hope where I don't. I guess that is good. I must have a grain of hope or else I wouldn't keep showing up and spending all my hard-earned money.

Just wanted to share what's been going on. As usual, I've been pretty absent from Babbleland. I'm sorry.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken crushedout

Posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:12:43

In reply to Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 10:53:23

I'm sorry. I hate to think of you having to go through that again. But this time it sounds as if you have a therapist who's better able to help you? Maybe if you can work through it with her, you can find your way to loving someone else.

Although I do think the therapeutic situation is inherently seductive in some ways.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken Dinah

Posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 11:17:13

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken crushedout, posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:12:43


Thanks, Dinah. Yes, this one is handling it better, and the truth is that this time around it's less painful (probably because of how she's handling it, mostly).

I hope you are right. I just have no idea what this means, "to work through it." I've been hearing that language for years and still can't figure out what it means.

I agree with you that the relationship is in some ways a set-up for exactly what's happening to me. Why do this to myself? It does seem kind of stupid.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken crushedout

Posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:22:18

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken Dinah, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 11:17:13

You might want to check the recent archives. I think Madeline posted something about being able to love because she loved her therapist first.

I think maybe that's part of how we work through it. Another part might be seeing some patterns that we repeat.

Although seeing the patterns and changing them are two different things. Or maybe not. Now when I see myself acting the same way I usually do with older men in authority, I tend to be amused with myself. At least eventually.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken Dinah

Posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 11:39:11

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken crushedout, posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:22:18


But I've never seen being able to love as one of my problems. And what is the pattern that I'm trying to break here? Falling in love with therapists? That seems easy. Just don't have one.

I suppose it's different for everyone, but I can't really think of what the issue is for me that I would be trying to work out. Maybe it has yet to reveal itself?

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken

Posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:55:46

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken Dinah, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 11:39:11

I was responding to this in your first post.

"...and it's seeming more and more impossible that I ever will fall in love with anyone other than an older, straight, female, married therapist (of mine)"

I guess the pattern might come in on older, straight, and possessing some quality that therapists share? Are you attracted to older women outside therapy? Straight women? Women who aren't available to you? Women who listen attentively? Women in a position of (however you see therapists being in a position)?

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken

Posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 12:02:41

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:55:46

> I was responding to this in your first post.
>
> "...and it's seeming more and more impossible that I ever will fall in love with anyone other than an older, straight, female, married therapist (of mine)"

Yeah, no, I understand why you responded the way you did. I'm not meaning to be critical of what you said in any way--just trying to figure out what MY pattern is.

The thing for me is BEFORE I started therapy with "Ellen," I didn't seem to have this pattern. I mean, I was able to fall in love with actual people in my life. That all seems like ancient history now.


> I guess the pattern might come in on older, straight, and possessing some quality that therapists share? Are you attracted to older women outside therapy? Straight women? Women who aren't available to you? Women who listen attentively? Women in a position of (however you see therapists being in a position)?

Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. Yes. But where does it get me to know all that? For example, WHY would I be attracted to unavailable women? And even if I know why, how does that make it easier to change it?

As I said, I'm not trying to challenge you. Your thoughts are extremely helpful. I'm just trying to figure this out.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken

Posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 12:11:37

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 12:02:41

Aye, there's the rub.

But that's what we go to therapy for.

For me, to some extent, it's simple acceptance. Like understanding that my tendency to play the little girl is part of the reason my husband plays the Daddy, so if I want him to change I need to change myself. Or to realize I'm putting myself in a situation where no matter how hard I try, I can't win. If I accept that, truly accept that I'm not going to buck the odds, it's easier to let it go. Because isn't part of the attraction the potential that if you just try hard enough you'll be the exception? And that will prove something to you? That you're special, maybe? At least that's the pattern with me. And therapy especially is geared to give you the idea that you're at least partly succeeding, thus hooking you into trying harder.

My problem is that I generally succeed to a limited degree. The fact that I succeed is enough to keep me trying. The fact that I only succeed to a limited degree keeps me from being happy with what I do accomplish.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken

Posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 12:44:29

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 12:11:37

Of course, for you the reasons might be completely different.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken » crushedout

Posted by fallsfall on July 21, 2006, at 15:31:29

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 12:02:41

The fact that you have the same issue with two therapists means that it is an important issue for you. I don't know what it means, but I do think that if you can keep talking about it that things will resolve after a while. I'm glad that this therapist is handling things differently.

Keep working on it.

(((Crushed)))

Falls.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken

Posted by annierose on July 21, 2006, at 16:39:27

In reply to Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 10:53:23

My T descibes good therapy as a "glorious love affair". She's straight, I'm straight. So I don't think because you are gay changes the feelings you are experiencing.

It's important for you to find out what need she is recreating for you that was missing or broken or whatever during your life.

I think it's worth sticking with the pain parts until you feel that resolution --- by talking about it over and over. It just takes so much time!!

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken Dinah

Posted by llrrrpp on July 21, 2006, at 16:43:07

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken crushedout, posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:22:18

> You might want to check the recent archives. I think Madeline posted something about being able to love because she loved her therapist first.
>

I remember Maddie's post. It was wonderful.

I just wanted to interject that I never loved myself until I fell in love completely with my husband. He taught me that he felt that love for me too, and that is what eventually allowed me to love myself. (Sometimes more/sometimes less!). He always said that I couldn't love him unless I loved myself. He didn't allow me to indulge in my self-hating rituals, and that made all the difference. He taught me the difference between disliking my body/my test scores/etc. and hating myself.

Maybe that's what is happening to you, crushedout? You are falling in love with someone, because you don't know how to love yourself yet? I'm pretty dumb about transference (having read very little about it, and never having experienced it personally). I just wanted to give you a little hope that you can transfer some of that love that you feel for another, and use it to recognize that you are loveable too. Even when the love is not reciprocated (i.e. in therapy), you can still love yourself.

(((crushedout)))
-ll

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken annierose

Posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 17:32:49

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by annierose on July 21, 2006, at 16:39:27


That sounds right, but it all seems so abstract that it's really hard to have faith in the process.

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken llrrrpp

Posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 17:38:11

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken Dinah, posted by llrrrpp on July 21, 2006, at 16:43:07

I think I already love myself but I'm sick of just loving myself. I want to love someone else who can love me back also.

I guess there are ways that I could love myself more, and I am working on those.

I think my T can love me back, actually, but she can't love me the way I want her to. But maybe the love she can give me is better than what I want? That's what they keep telling me, but in my gut, I just feel like if she would hold me and kiss me and let me cry in her arms, then I would be all better. Would that really be so bad?

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken

Posted by raisinb on July 21, 2006, at 21:13:40

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by Dinah on July 21, 2006, at 11:55:46

Wow, I posted in response to another message, but crushedout, your situation is exactly like mine. I don't know what to do. You seem to have told your therapist; I probably won't be able to do that, but does that do any good?

 

Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken raisinb

Posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 21:58:08

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by raisinb on July 21, 2006, at 21:13:40

> Wow, I posted in response to another message, but crushedout, your situation is exactly like mine. I don't know what to do. You seem to have told your therapist; I probably won't be able to do that, but does that do any good?


Well, I found this site over three years ago on the day that I told my *last* therapist I was in love with her. That's a long story and she didn't deal with it in the best way, so here I am, still going through the same sh*t. I'm not in a position to tell you that it does any good.

What I am pretty certain of, though, is that going to therapy and not being honest with your T about exactly what's going on with you won't do a person a lick of good. But I also know how hard it is to talk about this stuff. And I think it's important to be prepared for your T's response. If s/he is a good T, s/he won't agree to run off with you, or even encourage your feelings in any way. That can be terribly disappointing when you want more than anything to have your love reciprocated.

 

My experience with loving my therapist. crushedout

Posted by madeline on July 22, 2006, at 8:38:59

In reply to Paying to have my heart professionally broken, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 10:53:23

I completely understand where you are right now. Personally, I think loving your therapist is absolutely normal and necessary.
I still see my love for therapist as a gift - it reminds me that no matter what happened to me, I am still able to feel love and respond to kindness.
However, it is important - and this is the hard part - to realize that the love you feel will never progress to the love that you want. And that is okay. Love can exist in the therapeutic space and it doesn't harm anyone, it doesn't screw everything up and it doesn't mean that you are stupid needy person. Your therapist cares for you, that I know and both your love and hers are now a part of therapy and that's alright.

I got VERY mad at my therapist over the way I felt. I told him that there is no love in therapy and that it is all fake. He simply responded that there was no therapy without love.

I thought that I would never love outside of therapy too. But that is not true. I'm with a wonderful man right now and I know it is because of the love I felt in therapy. The key I found was to be open to love outside of therapy and being ready to tolerate the fear. I also know that if things don't work out with him, I still have the love of my therapist and we can work through it together.

Loving your therapist is sooo not a bad thing. Try using that love to brace you as you find love in the real world.

Worked for me.

Maddie

 

Re: My experience with loving my therapist. madeline

Posted by crushedout on July 22, 2006, at 9:39:26

In reply to My experience with loving my therapist. crushedout, posted by madeline on July 22, 2006, at 8:38:59


Madeline,

Thank you for sharing this with me. I looked for your thread in the archives but hadn't found it yet.

It's weird because your story should give me hope but my reaction is: I DON'T WANT ANYBODY ELSE. That is part of being in love for me, I guess--I just love that one person and no one else seems good enough? Or do I not want real love?

I can't explain it. Right now, I think I would accept my former T as a lover, or my current T, but no one else interests me, except as a distraction. And I can't imagine (nor do I want!) to want another lover.

It's really, really confusing.

Also, I feel really p*ssed off about being gay because it is soooo much harder to find a woman than it is to find a man. For me, anyway. If I were straight, I'm sure I would be married by now. But maybe that's a red herring. As my T points out, I'm only looking for *one* person anyway.

It really feels hopeless.

On the other hand, I do love this love I feel. And I do feel love from my T also. It's a pure kind of love. It's not sexual. It's just kindness and wanting me to be safe and happy. And it does give me an incredibly good feeling inside that I take with me. I am really grateful for that. But tortured at the same time.

Anyway, thank you.

crushed (as always) (with tears on my face)

P.S. You write eloquently.

 

Re: My experience with loving my therapist. crushedout

Posted by madeline on July 22, 2006, at 12:24:23

In reply to Re: My experience with loving my therapist. madeline, posted by crushedout on July 22, 2006, at 9:39:26

Link to my post:
http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/psycho/20060604/msgs/656352.html

I do understand how you feel. I really do. It's hard to imagine finding someone as perfect as your therapist. It's hard to imagine loving someone OTHER than your therapist. I get it, I really really do.

I stayed in that place for a long time and it's a bad place to be, BUT, it's an okay place to be too. In a stange way, it is comfortable and very very safe. The love is wholly real, but the situation is not.

Our therapist's experience of our therapy is very different from ours. I think the love they feel for us is from a shared experience with us, but they have not shared their intimate sides with us the way we have with them.

For me, it was so scary to imagine a truly shared intimate experience. Believe it or not, it was my MOTHER that told me that things were not going to change until I made them change.

It was the scariest, I think most horrifying thing that I have ever done. But I started to open myself to people around me. At first, I almost had the infamous "psychotic break", but I survived and came out of it with love.

The fact that you are gay doesn't change anything, in my opinion. Love is love, fear is fear and hope is hope.

There are no guarentees here, but you owe it to yourself and those that COULD love you to just simply try.

Maddie

 

crushed...

Posted by raisinb on July 29, 2006, at 18:19:26

In reply to Re: Paying to have my heart professionally broken raisinb, posted by crushedout on July 21, 2006, at 21:58:08

I went back to the archives and read some of your posts about your experiences with your previous T...so sorry you had to go through all that. And I identify with it so much! All the confusing ups and downs and anger and resentment and love and constantly wondering whether it's her bad treatment or your own issues.

I hope things go better with your current T, and I hope all of us get to a place like Madeline's.

 

Re: crushed... raisinb

Posted by crushedout on July 30, 2006, at 10:00:41

In reply to crushed..., posted by raisinb on July 29, 2006, at 18:19:26

Thanks, raisin. Yeah, that was a really hard thing I went through--very confusing. I read a passage in this book that I think pegasus recommended ("On Being a Therapist") that I found really interesting re: the differences between my former T and my current one. (As you may have read, my former T used self-disclosure a lot, in ways that were especially confusing for me.)

The passage is in the section called "Uses and Abuses of Self-Disclosure." He writes:

"[T]here are few therapeutic activities that are so abused under the guise of being helpful. Excessive self-disclosure may be done to relieve the therapist's own discomfort with the inherent inequality of the relationship. Afterward, it is easy to find some clinical justification: 'I'm only trying to make the client feel comfortable' or 'I thought he might feel less alone in his pain' or 'I am only being real.' If self-disclosure is not moderated, all the barriers between the personal and the professional become muddled, and the client's fundamental perceptions of therapist competence and empathy may be irrevocably altered. Transference is also sacrificed when the therapist relinquinshes his nonpersonhood in favor of an authentic relationship."

I find the language stilted and the treatment too glib, but it's an interesting passage (I wish he explained it better). I think he's onto something, and that that was a big part of where my last T really f'ed up.



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