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Re: When he's good he's very very good. Dinah

Posted by Solstice on September 17, 2011, at 16:04:56

In reply to Re: When he's good he's very very good. floatingbridge, posted by Dinah on September 17, 2011, at 9:01:19

> In this particular instance, I think trust played little part in my leaving him. If he hadn't corrected the problem, and if it hadn't continued to be corrected, I would have gone to one session and left again.

Wow. I love what you say here, Dinah. It sounds like a resolute understanding of what you're worth :-)

> It really is a credit to him and to years of therapy. At one point I would have clung to him no matter what. For whatever he was able to give me. At this point in my therapeutic life, I know I deserve better. I deserve a therapist who doesn't struggle to stay awake in nearly every session. I deserve a therapist who can be present in sessions. If he can't be that therapist, then I'm no longer so needy as to stay.

You don't include yourself in the 'credits,' but I really do think that although he and years of therapy cannot be discounted.. it says more about *you* than anything else:
1. You had to overcome a significant obstacle - whatever it's been - that prevented you in the past from not allowing bad behavior to continue.
2. You had to actively confront it - to put your foot down - and say (in effect) "I deserve better than you are delivering!"
3. His response (working at changing his behavior) decisively says (in effect): "Dinah - you DO deserve better than I've been delivering... and you are worth the effort for me to look at my failure and work to make changes in myself."
4. Your willingness to forgive him.. to give him another chance.. says more about who you are than anything else. He didn't *deserve* another chance. It's not like this is the first, second, or even third time that it's been an issue. But this time you stomped your foot loud enough to get his attention (and you shouldn't have had to do that).. and as for your willingness to stay in the relationship, hold your trust in reserve, and work through it with him.. all I can say is that he should feel humbled, and privileged, even honored, every time you walk in the room.

> It's not like he was groggy a week or two. It had been months where it had gone from a minor nuisance now and then to a major problem. A problem so pronounced that it was borderline funny.
> It's hard to trust again after that. I think it takes a while of it not being a problem before I can trust again. Or maybe I should trust in some ways more easily because he was responsible enough to (eventually) fix the problem. But perhaps still not totally trust that he will stay fit and able to do therapy.

My therapist and I talked about trust last session. Trust is a huge problem for me. In session, I pondered whether I would ever find a 'real' outside-of-therapy relationship where I could trust, feel safe, and sustain that with someone. I was wondering "Do I have to limit my relationships to trained therapists?" T smiled and reminded me of earlier admonishments where T has said "I don't ever want you to wholly trust me, or anybody else." T says that trust has to be earned on an ongoing basis. Trust isn't something that you should ever just 'give.' It has to be earned and deserved on an encounter by encounter basis. T reminded me of a number of past therapeutic failures to prove the point. What I think I'm really beginning to understand, is that there are no long-term relationships that don't have failures. It's not so much about finding relationships where the other person can sustain trustworthiness, as much as it's about whether both people in the relationship are willing to work it out together. Clearly, you and your T have that kind of commitment. My T just says that I should never leave myself unprotected - in any relationship. So with your T, maybe not trusting him (at least in certain respects) is the right thing to do. My T would say that your reserve is healthy.

He gets a gold star for being responsive and addressing it. But you get ten gold stars for surviving his failure, for being generous-of--spirit and giving him another chance, and for being strong enough to confront it.





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poster:Solstice thread:996790