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Re: Phone Policies

Posted by Daisym on October 1, 2004, at 23:04:54

In reply to Re: Phone Policies, posted by Skittles on October 1, 2004, at 22:11:41

>>>>So, my thought process is that if she isn't in the office, she isn't planning to be working(which is the only place I fit into her life), so leaving a message would be invading her personal time. <<<

I understand your thought process here, but it seems to me that part of being a therapist is being "on call" too. Again, I would expect my pediatrician to call me back, even after hours. As long as it was reasonable. Or I would talk to the "guy" on call. Not that I want the therapist on call, but you know what I mean. The therapy process is more than just the hour face-to-face. What goes on in between is important and powerful too. And, I'm reasonably sure that most therapist know that they open your emotions wide, bring stuff to the surface that just can't be contained sometimes.

>>>>>There are lots and lots of times when I want to call, but then I wonder what exactly it is that I expect to get out of it and I can't figure it out, so I don't call. She can't fix it, so why bother her?<<<<

I've said this a million times to my therapist. Almost word for word. "I don't know why I'm calling, I don't know what I want you to do for me, but you told me to call if I felt like this." He points out over and over again that it probably isn't what he'll say, it is the fact that he is there. I want to hear his voice, not the meaning of the words. I don't want to be alone with "it" and I don't want to feel like he has disappeared. He talked recently about being part of a double container. I try to contain my feelings but he wraps around also and provides reinforcement of that container. And if the feelings leak out or spill up over the top of my container, it is OK, because he is there backing me up. I liked thinking about it that way. So it takes some of the stress off.

Equally as important, I think, is the idea that people like me, who have spent a lifetime stuffing their feelings, are so good at it, that when a length of time goes by, I don't remember how I felt 4 days ago. If I was having a hard time, I rarely would tell him about it because I handled it and I was taught to push forward, not back. And then I could never figure out why I felt like I felt or how to not let the stress accumulate and then overwhelm. More frequent contact has allowed better communication of these feelings and better stress managment.

And even given all that, with all I know, it is still really, really hard. Because I still feel like I've turned into the exact thing I was afraid of, the Pain in the A## client who is needy and demanding. *sigh*




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poster:Daisym thread:396496