Therapy Monday. Therapy did not go so well today. Here is the problem — I want Ron to like me. This is it. I feel more secure if he likes me, and if I think I’ve upset him or done something embarrassing, I go home and feel bad about it for the rest of the week. When really, I have no control over whether he likes me or not. I also don’t actually know if he likes me or not. So I need to give this up for God’s sake.
Today I was struggling with depression and trying to force myself to work with little success. On the drive across town to my appointment, I started getting anxious about the upcoming session. I decided to play it by ear, see what I felt like talking about and go with the flow. Mistake.
Ron seemed a little tired when I got there. I told him he seemed tired at one point, and he said Oh. Then – what does that meant to you, that I’m tired. Then I say – I’m interested in what you’re like. Maybe you’ll tell me why you’re tired – you were up with a sick kid for instance. To which he didn’t reply.
I again had trouble talking. I had the strong feeling that I didn’t want to talk. I asked Ron if he wanted to hear about my week. He said sure, so I said a few things, but my week had been woefully uneventful, so I didn’t have much to say. I had mostly been struggling with depression and with this memory I’d had last session.
Ron said that it was as if I was dismissing my own experience, not wanting to get into anything. And he said something to the effect that a part of me is wanting to brush everything over and not feel anything, the same way my family handled things. I said he’d said that to me before, and that in fact I did spend a lot of time trying to feel, but find it difficult.
Then we talked for a while about the fish pond memory I’d had last time. I felt it partially coming back, but didn’t want to fall into re-experiencing it again. I talked a while about that – how I’d felt, wondering what actually had happened to me then. I talked about feeling that I was being held down, being angry, wanting to get up, then giving up at one point and falling into a black hole, by myself, and feeling despair. I talked about this stuff, but didn’t fall back into it like last time.
Here’s the problem – I want Ron to like me. I feel he’ll only do that if I remain grown up and in control. I’ve switched ages a few times in his office, and he hasn’t really clued into what is happening – he thinks it’s the regular me, and he gets taken aback. It confuses him, and he doesn’t like it much. I’m probably being too sensitive, but me switching ages creates problems.
So when I’m sitting there, talking about my past, it’s a strain to remain adult and takes a lot of my energy. So yeah, I’m not showing much emotion, because I’m busy trying to control things so he’ll continue to like me.
That’s the sad fact of the matter, and it’s a waste of my time and money.
And the fact is, Ron has interesting things to say. I can’t remember what he said right now, but it was insightful, and if I became younger, I would not be able to understand him.
I actually meant to tell him that I appreciate that he’s able to sit with me when these memories happen, as I find it reassuring to have him there when I am so frightened and alone. Of course, when I was there, this no longer seemed important to say to him, so I didn’t bother.
I guess I don’t really know that he doesn’t like me when I switch ages. But I do know it confuses him.
At the end of the session, Ron said something about how adults punish children for minor transgressions, while they get away with major betrayals of trust without any consequences for them. That kind of touched me, and I started smiling, so he asked why. I said you know, you’re nice. I think you’re nice.
Bang, I’d switched ages. So that was basically the end of the session, and I was relieved to have navigated through it basically as an adult, and said something to the effect of – well, made it through another session. Then I forgot to give him his cheque (dissociated – that’s what happens), so I raced back to his office to get there before his next client to give it to him.
I can see what I was doing now, afterwards, but couldn’t see it while it was happening. Stupid. Though in a way, my well being seems to depend on this man’s good opinion. Sigh. Sigh. Sigh.
So now I feel tense and kind of dissociated. Angry with myself for playing this game. I guess no worse than before I went at least. However full of self-dislike.