Today is a part-sharpie/part-prose post. Today is therapy day, which means I [very predictably] have a thumping headache and feel absolutely drained. Today was really hard, really really hard, and really really emotional and really really intense. There are not enough ‘reallys’ to do it justice. The only true achievement of the day that I can cite is this………..
I AM FANTASTIC AT CRYING; WHAT CAN I SAY, IT’S A LIFE SKILL
Some therapy days there are more things to cry about than others. Today was a maxer outer in terms of the imagined bulge of my inner sadness. Topics for discussion were plentiful, so we scratched the surface of every one but didn’t have time to delve into anything properly.
The therapy appointment today was one of my (what I call) shopping list ones. I list, in a very desperate tone of voice, all the stuff that I am massively struggling with in life emotionally speaking right now…shitty situations, shitty people, shitty thoughts, shitty feelings, shitty decisions, shitty actions, shitty memories, and if I’m lucky, potential solutions to the overriding shitness that is my life.
It was a challenging sesh in terms of the infamous “therapeutic relationship” between her and me. I’m not saying there was conflict, but there was underlying tension. I had emailed her when I’d got home telling her I was unhappy she hadn’t responded to my desperate pleas for brief reassuring contact when I’d got in touch with her while I was poorly, and in France [AKA. another bloody country.] And then we had a conversation about “boundaries” and the importance (in her clinical view) of maintaining them. I like to resist boundaries and ask for more, and she is firmly boundaried. Her boundaries are fairly impenetrable actually. I want more, she gives less…in my best interests?
I know she is like this with everyone, but how I interpret that is she is MEAN to everyone. Every explanation she gave me I would listen to and respond…..yeah, but why?
I could NOT get my head around how someone can NOT respond to someone vulnerable expressing despair. All the usual rules of civilization seemingly do NOT apply with a therapist, when not actually in the therapy chair. It seems that they care for you for their allotted NHS time, and then they stop caring. That is a gross oversimplification, and probably unfair on them, but that is how it sometimes feels, to me, the sufferer and patient who is unwell and trying to get fixed.
I went through a long phase of feeling secure that my therapist thought I was an alright human being and didn’t feel any active dislike of me, but this sitch where I challenged her on her boundaries has bought out some frustration and resentment and hurt feelings, and also some silly paranoia that she doesn’t like me. She said it was ok to hate her if I liked, and I could feel anything towards her. I replied that I don’t hate her, I just felt a bit put out. I am also far more worried that she dislikes me, than any resentment/disappointment towards her.
It’s a funny old game. This therapy lark.
There were a few brighter moments, but crying and despair was the general theme of today.
Because I was in an arsey mood today (pre-menstral EEK), I had a few light digs at her. Sometimes I am amazed at how I can come up with quite cutting, direct, and rude-ish comments so spontaneously when I am hurting. I surprise myself what comes out of my mouth. I become impulsive, flippant, and spontaneous.
I speak to work through my feelings, but I sometimes destroy rapport in conversational blows after blow, just from what I say.
I often say things I don’t mean, things for impact, things for a reaction…but all in subtle ways, not like the obvious out of order stuff, just the subtle snide things.
I am trying to work out my annoyance that I feel so fucking emotionally dependant on a therapist, when I’d really rather cope without. People who don’t have psychological therapy are sometimes inclined to think therapy and counselling is self-indulgent, when in reality it is often quite brutal and very very unenjoyable.
Therapy involves me going into my coffin of doom. It is a place where I am challenged (I hate that). It is a place I get upset (I hate that). It is a place I admit to myself and another person my raw and true and horrible feelings. I do that on my blog too of course, but saying the things out loud, to an actual person is far harder than writing to an audience who (unless they leave comments) remain largely invisible to me.
When I blog, I DO NOT think of who is reading. I just blog, because I like writing. Even if I didn’t publish these posts, my blog content would be the same, maybe just with a tad more bluntness and directness and more swearing, I suppose.
But when I talk in the therapy room, to someone sat a short distance away, who is listening intently to everything I say and responding with her psychological reflections and all round wizardry, it is a very different ballgame.
If I typed, and WordPress invented an e-therapist, who responded like an archetypal therapist would to every damn point I make and every damn feeling, I would come off WordPress! I could not stand the interactive therapeutic response thing if it were part of blogging as well as real-life therapy.
I LOVE the fact that WordPress does not argue with me. It does NOT try and challenge my perceptions or interpretations or reactions or the validity of my feelings. I say it straight, as I feel it. No arguments. No alternative ways of thinking pointed out, until afterwards when the comments on a post start to come in.
Therapy is NOT self-indulgent. It is TOUGH. It involves crying. It involves facing up to things about yourself that no person other than your therapist can do is exactly the same way.
Therapy is unique. Therapy hurts. Therapy challenges. I feel drained afterwards, always. I wonder why I put myself through it…but I think the answer is, I know it is helping, albeit slowly, and I also know that without the constant of a therapist in my life at this point in time I’d go absolutely bonkers.
So therapy bonkers is chosen over real scary and unknown un-therapised bonkers.
Therapy bonkers is safe and predictably unpredictable.
Un-therapised bonkers is suicide, self-injury, breaking down and not being able to repair myself, so for now, however challenging and hard it is, I choose therapy bonkers.