Psycho-Babble Psychology Thread 700438

Shown: posts 1 to 15 of 15. This is the beginning of the thread.


T's Offices

Posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

Jost's and Daisy's posts above sparked this thought about our T's office spaces. So here goes...

What do you like about your T's office? What do you dislike? Has your T moved office space? If so, how many times? Was it relatively hard or relatively easy to adjust to the new space? What is it about the space that helps you feel safe, protected, whatever? If there are changes to the office, does it affect you?

I, of course, have my own thoughts about this and will share later when I have more time. As you may have guessed, I have a long story to tell about my T and her office. More to come...


Re: T's Offices

Posted by Jost on November 4, 2006, at 22:34:58

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

I'm interested to hear your story, TherapyGirl.

I've had many Ts-- therefore many offices. I also remembered another T's Wife sighting of some significance.

An office in a wing of their home. I'll write about my T's office, but look forward to learning about yours.



Re: T's Offices » Jost

Posted by Lindenblüte on November 4, 2006, at 23:00:48

In reply to Re: T's Offices, posted by Jost on November 4, 2006, at 22:34:58

lots of books. loveseat. smooshie. worn. lots of knickknacks. comfy. smallish.

window faces east. good light



Re: T's Offices

Posted by Daisym on November 4, 2006, at 23:14:33

In reply to Re: T's Offices » Jost, posted by Lindenblüte on November 4, 2006, at 23:00:48

I've written this before but...

I love my therapist's office. At least one of them. It is in an old victorian, on the top floor. There are windows all around on three sides and the roof slopes, like an attic. There are trees all around so it feels like you are sitting up in them. The couch is soft and he has lots of pillows.

The other office is lots bigger and has a couch and a chair and his chair and a book shelf. It gets great afternoon sun. He redecorated this office about 6 months after I started going there. He warned me and I was actually sort of insulted that he thought I'd be upset about furniture changes. Guess what? He was right. It was discombobulating for a little while.

*sigh* Everything is symbolic in some way in therapy, isn't it?

Oh - what makes it safe? He does.


Re: T's Offices » TherapyGirl

Posted by annierose on November 5, 2006, at 8:58:55

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

My T's office is nice enough. It's spacious and has large windows facing a major street. In front of both sets of windows are two different couches. One is more cushy w/pillows to sit in, the another is for lying down. What I don't like about the position of either couch is I am easily distracted by the sounds of the traffic (oh - the fire station is next door). And in the winter, cool drafts move right through the panes of glass.

My T sits opposite of both couches (in the middle) to easily orientate herself to whenever the client chooses to sit.

And of course there is the typical bookcases, desk and art work on the wall.

I don't think I would mind if she updated the office. I would guess she has been in that space for about 15+ years. And it's probably never changed --- well maybe the one couch is newer.


Re: T's Offices

Posted by muffled on November 6, 2006, at 11:40:46

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

My T's office SUCKS, and she hates it too.
But its in a church, and its cheap I guess, so the practice can afford it. They do alot of sliding scale work I think. But the church is gonna do a reno of their building, so I hope the office is improved.
Its small, flourescent lights I think. Bookcases. Plain old wooden chairs etc.
There is another room w/a couch in the church they sometimes use, but its a long narrow room, and the couch is sinky and I get ascared of getting stuck in it, and the door seems a hundred miles away....
Thats why we sometimes sit outside or go for walks....


Re: T's Offices

Posted by wishingstar on November 6, 2006, at 16:58:04

In reply to Re: T's Offices » TherapyGirl, posted by annierose on November 5, 2006, at 8:58:55

I dont like Ginnys office all that much, but its starting to grow on me as I become more comfortable there I guess. You open the front door to the building and its just a set of stairs. Upstairs is just a long hallway. It's a sliding scale, low-income agency so it isnt particularly nice, but it isnt too bad.

Ginnys office is very plain and not all that warm. She has a big wood desk in the corner, bookshelves, all the normal stuff. There are 2 ugly gold fabric-covered chairs.. theyre padded but not particularly comfortable. There is an end table with a big plant in the corner and one chair on each side of it, tilted towards each other a bit. Thats about it. It doesnt have the cozy, safe feeling that some Ts offices have with the comfy couches, soft lighting, etc. Anne's office was like that, and it's one thing I miss about seeing her. But it's okay.. an ugly office is excusable if she's a good T. And I think she is. :)


Re: My story about T's office (LONG)**Trigger?**

Posted by TherapyGirl on November 6, 2006, at 17:24:46

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

So here's the story:

A little over a year ago, my T suddenly announced that she was moving full-time to an office at a church that she had been using just 1.5 days/week. She also gave me just two weeks notice.

I honestly didn't think it would be a problem. I had seen her for over 20 years at that point and she has had five different offices during that time -- three of them in different locations (but the same practice). It honestly wasn't a big deal most of the time. And I had seen her several times at the office at the church when my schedule was weird. I didn't like it much, but it was okay.

But this move was different because it was part of her move towards semi-retirement. And the lack of notice, I think, did not give me enough time to make the mental adjustment.

So the first day at the new office, I showed up. First, it took me 10 minutes to find a parking space and the one I found was down the street in front of someone's house and I couldn't tell if I was going to get towed or not. So I was already agitated when I showed up a little late (I'm NEVER late). Then I walked in and NONE of her stuff was there -- not the books, not the art work, not any of the stuff that she has always taken with her. And the office had the look and feel of a storage closet for old, used-up furniture no one wanted. The couch was cantalope-colored, the carpet was emerald green, the office was located in a stairwell. It smelled like a church (this was a very bad thing because I grew up in a ministerial family and church has never, ever, felt all that safe to me). In addition, at least every 5 minutes during the entire session, people were clomping up and down the stairs talking in very loud voices that echoed through the office. It was just too much. I told her I hated that office and she said, "I know." THAT WAS IT. Then I blew off her hug on my way out (which I never do) and she said, "I'll see you next week." I looked at her like she was insane and said, "Yeah, right."

I called about 30 minutes later and left a voice mail canceling therapy. I told her it didn't feel safe to me, that it didn't feel private, that there was nowhere to park and that that couch was the ugliest thing I had ever seen. Then I reminded her that I had successfully changed offices with her 5 times previously, so she should know that this was ALL her fault. I explained that her offices ALWAYS, ALWAYS looked like her and that this office had no trace of her. I asked her where in the hell her stuff was. Then I yelled at her for not telling me until the last minute and for not even trying to do anything to make this move easier. And then I said, "And frankly, I'd be amazed if your other clients aren't just as upset as I am."

I followed that up with approximately 10 pages of journaling that started out with, "F*** you," and got progressively worse.

This has already gotten so long that I'll skip to the end. It took months, but we finally worked our way through this. I can write all the details if anyone is interested, but she basically put her stuff out, got a slipcover for the couch and bought some pretty pillows.

At any rate, I had really not been aware of how much her office affected me and helped me feel safe until this happened. I thought it was all her. So I was reminded of this during the thread above and wondering if any of you felt the same way about the physical space.


Re: T's Offices » TherapyGirl

Posted by Dinah on November 6, 2006, at 17:43:54

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

The office where I first started seeing him was in a large old building with off street parking. The light was fabulous, and the windows were the old poured glass sort, with bubbles and waves. When I was waiting for him, I'd sway back and forth in front of the window and watch the ripply effect on the landscape.

The walls were pinkish. The curtains enhanced the wonderful lighting, turning it rosy. The sofa and chairs were the same as now, but the ambience was totally different. His bric a brac were wonderfully eclectic, and decidedly odd, and I'd wonder why on earth he had this or that around. And sometimes when I was floating away and he was trying to ground me, he'd point out or hand me something and tell me the reason he chose it for his office.

His office is now in a large shiny office building in one of those executive suites. He "enhanced" the room with some shiny and angular art deco furniture. It is certainly intimate, as when he stretches his legs they practically touch my feet. I'm not crazy about it.

His soon to be office will be in another old building. I'm not sure about the glass in the windows, but he'll be able to paint it, so I'm hoping for rosy. If there was off street parking, it'd be worth the extra drive to get into another old building.

I've seen a lot of adjunct therapists, and a lot of offices, and I've come to some serious conclusions about them. The space and angle between therapist and client is the most important element. Too far away or an awkward angle and the mood is all wrong. And for heavens sake, if they have fabric upholstery they need to keep an eye on it. If it gets shabby and stained, their OCD clients will be instantly anxious about exactly what that stain might be.

Oh, and from my therapist's office. If you have a photo of family members in the office, face them towards your desk. Your daughter's bright shining eyes might be quite engaging, but not when your client is trying to talk about something private. "She's staring at me!!!"


Re: T's Offices » TherapyGirl

Posted by canadagirl on November 6, 2006, at 17:54:22

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

My t's office has a picture of a couple engaging in....well not sure exactly what. Something like that! More acrobatic than what I could possibly do. lol!
Along with some other quite interesting eclectic stuff. (As you can probably tell he doesn't work in a clinical setting.) I've asked him about a lot of stuff in the office....except THAT picture. lol!


Re: T's Offices **Everybody**

Posted by TherapyGirl on November 6, 2006, at 18:50:45

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

Just wanted to thank you all for responding to this. It's been very interesting. I think it's not necessarily the physical space (and how shabby or deluxe it is), but the way the stuff in it feels to us. Although I am jealous of Daisy's T's treehouse office and Dinah's T's first office, with the wonderful glass and rosiness.


Re: T's Offices

Posted by Pfinstegg on November 6, 2006, at 21:34:30

In reply to Re: T's Offices **Everybody**, posted by TherapyGirl on November 6, 2006, at 18:50:45

I love my T's office. It's in his house, but has a separate entrance just for the office. The waiting room is private; there is a bathroom there, but you never see any patients, because they leave directly into the hallway, while you are to one side in a small room. His room has soft light, and soft colors; the walls are sort of rose-grey, and there are more bookcases than anything- thousands of books there. There are a few paintings, three chairs, and a couch with a pretty woven bedspread, which he (or his wife) washes every little while (you can smell the soap. It's very pretty, and somehow, so safe.


Re: T's Offices

Posted by Jost on November 7, 2006, at 2:17:59

In reply to Re: T's Offices, posted by Pfinstegg on November 6, 2006, at 21:34:30

My T.s office has always been dingy, shabby, monotone (greenish and brownish grays, with an industrial blue rug and some black furniture). It's not comfy, just shabby. sort of neglected, static.

It used to have a comforting feeling in its first incarnation, when he had a light brown shag run on the floor. Some of his colleagues thought it didnt' befit his status-- whatever that was,-- so over my objections, he bought industrial steel blue rug. I found it dispiriting because it was cold and impersonal and also hard and cheap looking. The other rug was comforting.

He's changed chairs, and couches. He's promised to use a decent carpeting store when he replacing the carpet, but that's not a promise I rely on. Because he sort of promised me before, then abrogated the promise afterward.

The office is kind of oppressive. Dark, poorly light, without nice light. walls standard white, no interesting odds and ends. One bookcase. Collections of journals on smaller bookshelves behind the couch. The main decoration is his photos, which he took in various countries. many of them are beautiful, but their effects is somewhat compromised by the closed-down feeling of the room itself.

There's not much light because it's on the first floor on a building on a main avenue with lots of shrinks offices around . It's one of those old offices that has a door in at the front, and a s econd door out at the back, so people don't have to go past one another. Everyone used to, but he mentioend at some point, that everyone had started using the second door out.

I wish the room were nicer, but we don't seem to have the same aesthetics.



Re: T's Offices

Posted by Jost on November 8, 2006, at 10:31:04

In reply to Re: T's Offices, posted by Jost on November 7, 2006, at 2:17:59

Of course, I was pretty mad at him when I wrote that. I'll write the not-mad version someday.



Re: T's Offices » TherapyGirl

Posted by kerria on November 8, 2006, at 23:11:26

In reply to T's Offices, posted by TherapyGirl on November 4, 2006, at 21:04:35

the T i've been going to has changed his office once in the six years. i'm more afraid of myself and my parts than anything there- either one of the rooms. i think the first one was scarier- i used to avoid stepping on the center rug because i have a part who thought that we could fall into it and be swallowed up- dissolved painfully.

i like the plants and the picture - the room always feels (both of them do) like it's outside of the real world- and the window looks out to the real world and i'm so so sad because there's no place for me out there- out here:(

One of the other patients left a toy there- and i don't like it.T doesn't care about me as much as other patients- my little parts don't play with any of the toys anymore. It's not safe because T doesn't care about us.


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