Sunday, November 1, 2009

Grace, your feelings are ugly and wrong!

That's how I felt the last time I left her office. 
That's what I heard her say to me (in my mind). 
Why go back now?

Should I start the 2 day countdown to the appointment I made for Tuesday with the therapist?

A couple of years ago I used to continually deal with an internal struggle that went much like this: After Therapy I would walk out of the therapist’s office reluctant to leave because her office represented safety for me, the world is unsafe, her office was safe.  I knew I wouldn’t be hurt there – she wouldn’t hurt me, nor would she allow anyone else to hurt me within the confines of her office – it was safe. I was sad that I had to leave. I wanted a pocket version of the therapist to take with me and I could take her out of my pocket when I was afraid. The next day or two, fear would take over which would then turn into anger and some sort of acting out behavior and then by the next week, I was embarrassed and afraid to go back to her office. But she was the *same* then…all accepting and ‘therapisty’ – not mad at me like I would expect. And I would feel safe again. Take the above paragraph and rinse, lather, repeat week after week after week. (Keep in mind this was before she turned into a marsha pod woman, and before the buckets).

Now I don’t want to go back to her office. I am afraid to go back. I can keep her at a distance right now…even though she still has followed through on her ‘commitment’ and has emailed me each Sun-Wed- Fri…she is not ‘real’ to me right now because I have not seen her, or talked to her…she is not real.

I am not real to her either. Aside from the Veruca Salt call and the scared little baby calling her on Friday night, I have not talked to her or left her any messages, so she does not know of any of the internal fighting/struggling I have going on right now – and because I have not been emailing her or calling her she does not know the extent of the distress I find myself in most nights…even though I have not cut myself since I stopped having to listen to her “marsha” talk. Not one time!

Essentially I think I am doing sort of the same thing – I bottle everything up and take care of all of my responsibilities, hide behind the mask of familiarity, accomplishing what I need too during each day. And at night there is a volcanic eruption of sadness and fear and childlike needing…but I deal with it. I speak about this to no one ‘in real life’, with the exception of Lynn, and I only allow myself to come here to express what I truly feel.

Is that helpful in a way of ‘working through’ any of it? Is this helpful to not talk about anything at all with the therapist, not process any of it? Can I continue to put on a mask and live my day to day life as someone I am not, or do I need to really find a balance of accepting ‘her’ and also being ‘me’ at the same time?

Each night I am begging for all of it to just stop! It doesn’t – but it isn’t different for me now than it was when I was seeing the therapist…the nights.  The only difference is now I just stopped reaching out for the therapist, just as I stopped reaching out for the host body when I was a child.  As the therapist once said to me, "In those moments of tempting the face of expected rejection/abandonment...make a different choice." She said this in response to my complaining about her not being available after 10pm anymore when I need her.  I no longer expect her to reject/abandon me because I no longer reach for her.  I know how to do that - be self-reliant - I stopped reaching for my mother when I was about 3 because I knew she had abandoned me and rejected me.  Why bother facing that again.  Better to just "deal with it."  So I have.

 My logical mind is simply not capable of comforting the young, frightened, emotional part of me. Not then and not now. I just do the best that I can in this painful place without her support.

The big question that remains is how can I return to the therapist’s office on Tuesday and try to connect with her again when all I feel is pain and confusion about her taking control of me and forcing DBT and buckets down my throat making my self-destructive behavior worse, not better. She left a long time ago – and as much as I desperately want the safety of her presence, I don’t know if that even exists anymore.

I am capable of ‘surviving’ – I learned that a long time ago, how to shut up and never allowing myself to feel anything at all- I don’t need her or anyone else’s help with that. I can survive. But at night when I feel lost and alone and so scared and small…I wanted the therapist to comfort me – which even just writing makes me want to vomit. I have never before want anyone to comfort me! Ever! I have never allowed it because if I am vulnerable and ask for comfort – that gives them the power card, and I won’t do that. That is precisely why I would never cry in front of anyone else (other than the therapist). I wait until everyone else is in bed before I allow myself to cry, even if that means I do math problems inside my head. And on the few occasions where that has not worked, I lock myself in the bathroom so no one sees me or hears me.

I allowed myself to feel comforted by the therapist, I allowed myself to trust her and be vulnerable and cry in front of her. I allowed her to see parts of me I would never, ever allow anyone else to see – and I was told it was ugly and disruptive and I should throw it all in a bucket and shut up and behave. I embarrassed her – and I embarrassed myself. I disappointed her and I think I even scared her.

This is better, this hiding away any true feelings/thoughts from the therapist, and everyone else in my real life…safer for everyone involved. Safer that she does not know what I really feel, how hard it still is every night…no one can care or love the parts of me that I showed her. And that’s not a whoa is me/pity party statement – it just is.

I was designed more for public than for private. And that is why I don’t want to go back to her office on Tuesday. I miss her, but it was too much for her.

Keep or cancel? Stay and face it – or run and hide? I am stuck in the middle…


  1. Grace, I think you should go. I do understand that it is hard but here is a quote that I often reflect upon.
    "You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the things which you think you cannot do." Eleanor Roosevelt
    I know its hard but I know you can do it too!

  2. Okay, you keep saying the you are dealing with things - that's what everyone does, they deal with things. You just have a deeper, more difficult time of it, but you are dealing with them. I'm wondering if your littles are the ones having all the issues with the therapist.

    I didn't cry until I was an adult. Know what I discovered? Crying doesn't make you weak, it doesn't give anyone the power card. When my ex saw me cry, he took time out from packing his things to walk over and give me a hug, thinking that he could make me feel better. WTF? I wouldn't let him touch me and I looked at him and said, "Don't let these tears mislead you. I either cry or grab a spoon and dig your eyes out. Right now, I'm chosin' to cry." He backed up and walked away. Tears can be a powerful tool, use them. They also make you feel better...

    Go to your session. Try not to do the count down, it will make it worse if you dwell on it. And tell your T what is going on, she can't help if you don't tell her. All my best to you in these next few days. I'll be thinking of you.

  3. Grace, is life going Ok for you?
    I suspect the answer is no.. and if it is, I think you should go.
    I know it is difficult. Boy do I know the mixed emotions that come with therapy.
    Give it another chance... for YOU. cause you are, despite whatever the voices you hear in your head are saying, you are WORTH IT!