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Back to the same yucky place

Posted by Annierose on May 29, 2009, at 21:18:09

I hate when I leave a session wondering what the heck we just spend 45 minutes talking about. And I have had two back to back sessions like that this week. I think my therapist was trying to make a big point but it fell on confused ears. And then I ask myself, Are we on the same page? Does she even know who I am?

When she explains her bigger view intellectually I do understand what she is saying but not how it necessarily applies to me and my current angst. Sometimes I think she attributes feelings to me that are not valid and more and more I tend to think its partly a cultural difference. I come from a big Italian family. I talk with energy, straightforwardness and expression. My therapist is a wholesome, homespun kind of gal that I could never imagine swearing or yelling (in the privacy of her own home).

Looking back on my treatment with her, I eventually come to this lonely confusing place. Something happens in the therapy, I get mad, angry and/or hurt. And she reacts with indifference. Current example: I was especially looking forward to my session on Tuesday. We had a powerful session on Thursday and I felt on surer footing in our work. For over a year I had asked for an earlier time slot on Tuesdays and one never became available. Eventually she asked a client to switch with me which made me feel awkward and indebted (and the time still was not ideal just 45 minutes earlier when I wanted 2 3 hours earlier).

Anyway, I came to my Tuesday appointment and I could hear a client in her office. I couldnt hear words but garbled tones --- but it was a male voice. And the session ran into my time. My t is rarely late so you would think it wouldnt bother me but it did. My watch said she was five minutes late, she said she was two minutes late. Whatever.

I was quiet for the start of my session and she asked if I was able to stay a few minutes later (to make up for her late start). I told her I felt angry that she was late and I noticed that Tuesdays feel problematic for me. Since I started my new Tuesday time slot, she chatted with a man (from the building) who blocked her office door leaving me awkwardly standing by and waiting, once we arrived together in the parking lot (really awkward), and I ran into the switched client after me in the bathroom, etc. etc. --- anyway back to my point my bubble burst when she was late and it was a time I wanted.

I felt she ignored my anger and she explained the following Thursday that when I get angry its a slippery slope and I run with it. She sees it as her job not to defend herself --- blah blah blah --- since ultimately I am responsible for my feelings. This is where our cultural differences come into play. She saw me angry a 10, I felt angry a 5. I felt I was open to work with the anger on Tuesday and I was anxious for her to help me dissipate the yucky feelings. Instead, her quiet disposition increased everything as in It must be me (she told me as much) Im over-reacting (okay I was but help me with that). I feel her quietness as criticism. She says thats not who I am. Im not thinking those critical thoughts but show me otherwise.

Its so frustrating that this small incident has carried into two additional sessions (she added a session today). And I feel no better. Im left to ask is this it? Can I ever work past this impasse that we always get to?




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