I’m realizing that I really need to use therapy to deal with pain and sorrow. There’s no use in trying to be friendly with Ron. It’s just fifty minutes – being friends is a waste of my time. No matter how well we get along, I will not see him again for seven days, and another fifty minutes.

Last session was kind of polite. Ron has pulled back from how he was when I was really fighting with him. I felt like I wanted to stay adult and listen to what he had to say, and I did that. I wasn’t yet feeling that bad about group ending – that came the next day.

Parts weren’t screaming to be heard, so I left them alone. Ironically though, for all this effort, I barely remember what we talked about. I know I came home and felt severely lonely.

What did we discuss? Must have talked about group. I thought Ron hadn’t made it very clear what kind of contributions he valued, so I told him that.

He suggested some kind of visualization to calm down when I panic in the group, instead of leaving. Sure. I tell him in an email that’s like building a lean to for shelter in a hurricane. I don’t think a visualization is going to help much at that point.

I told him about reconnecting with an old friend, and how we’d gone out of town for a day. It was enjoyable, but I ended up dissociated. We talked a bit about why that might happen.

But this would not have taken a whole session. Ron talked a fair bit, and I forgot pretty well everything he said. I wanted to let him speak and not always be interrupting, so I did that. I remember the effort that cost me.

I think I need to deal more with parts, with the difficulties I have.

There just doesn’t seem much point in trying to be nice and adult. I forget the whole session, and end up feeling lonely.

I wonder if the loneliness is coming from parts, when they do not get heard. I asked Ron if we could make regular time for them to speak in my session, and he’s open to that idea.

Sometimes I long so much for someone to talk to, but it can’t be Ron. I need to find someone else who wants to hear what I have to say. For whom it would make sense to be kind, to listen, and to understand as well as to be understood.

With fifty minutes a week, there’s not much sense me devoting a lot of time to understanding my therapist. He’ll have to work on understanding me.

  1. i like the lean-to in a hurricane analogy. that’s like when my CAMH therapist made some suggestions to me, like deep breathing, and looking at art magazines before bed, etc, as a way of dealing with some compulsive behaviour and i was like “hah… that’s like using a feather against a concrete block” and she said something interesting. she said, the techniques are not about “fixing” the issue, or “distracting” or “denying” things, they are just to open up in your brain a new way for doing things… that you will come to learn in coming months, so it was about creating space for something new… it was interesting for me to look at it that way. first time anyone explained it that way. it’s like holding ice when you want to self-harm, i always thought it was about substituting one pain for another, but she said it’s about re-booting your brain. anyhoooooooo…. 🙂

    • Gel said:

      Brave duck ~ I would just like to say thank you for sharing this distinction. It is excellently helpful to me right now.

    • Ellen said:

      Did you know your comment has spawned and entire blog post by We are One by Ruth? You made quite an impact Catherine. It’s funny, I haven’t used the visualization in the way Ron intended, but I did use it at work where I really struggle with hurt parts, and it helped a lot. So like you say….it’s maybe not such a totally ridiculous idea.

  2. I was about to respond “Yes!” but I see that Ashama beat me to it. The session needs to be about what you need.

    • Ellen said:

      Yeah, it does, thanks Cat.

  3. Amanda said:

    My thought is the exact same as the two above me.

    It’s time to focus on you in that office – what you need to heal and grow.

    • Ellen said:

      I think Ron’s intention is always to focus on me – just that I get sidetracked with wanting him to like me. I’ve thrown a lot of angry, mistrustful, childish stuff at him and sometimes I just want to be a grown-up having a conversation. Just that that doesn’t help me much. Thanks

  4. Ruth said:

    Wow…I am agreement with above and thanks to onebraveduck for that explanation. 2 therapist and 10 years of counseling and I don’t ever remember getting that explanation. This is awesome. Thanks.

  5. Gel said:

    Count me in on the “yes” response too. I won’t even bother feeling redundant. Some things need to be underlined a few times. Yes to there being time made each session for your parts to speak. Yes to your T working on understanding you. And YES to your therapy sessions being about what you need.

    And this really warmed my heart to read: ” I need to find someone else who wants to hear what I have to say. For whom it would make sense to be kind, to listen, and to understand as well as to be understood.” I hope you find that someone soon.

    • Ellen said:

      Gel, you are never redundant. 🙂 Thanks for your understanding comment.

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