Pathetic

What to say about my pathetic session today? That it was hurtful and damaging? That I wish I hadn’t gone? That I miss the therapist Ron used to be able to be, sometimes, someone who helped or at least listened.

I’ve canceled my session for next week, to allow him to get over the group, and get some distance. Maybe I’ll be able to leave altogether, who knows.

Ron seems to largely agree with what people say about me in group. He doesn’t say it outright, but that’s the gist. He talks in this calm, slow, creepy voice I think of as reserved for mental patients. And difficult clients obviously.

I’ve written him a series of emails, none very long, in an effort to regain some balance. He replied to the first one, but in an unhelpful way. He is behaving strangely – this morning I wanted to switch my session to later in the week, and he sent me about three emails about it, including a final ‘see you then!’. He never does that. Appointments are just one quick email, he never replies once I accept. So he’s weird. You’d think he was wanting me to come in. Once I was there, it was a different story. Creepy voice, slow calm logic – against my irrational self.

It hurts too much to go into what was said at the moment. He insisted I had not been scapegoated. He said I’d drummed myself out of the group. I wasn’t blaming the group for my leaving, I was just saying I had been scapegoated.

This is not an eloquent post. My mind is not working too well. I will get through all this sorrow somehow – time helps, especially for things like this. Just need to make it through the weekend.

Thanks for all the support on my last. With Ron completely denying what I told him, I was doubting my own reality. So thank you.

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10 comments
  1. I wonder why he feels the need to own the truth of the situation. Why does he know you weren’t scapegoated, but you don’t know what you know? Why is his opinion of the situation even relevant? The point seems to me that you felt you were, and what does one do in situations where you have the feeling? What is causing those feelings? And so on…Psychotherapists do sometimes think they are more unbiased than the rest of us, but the reality is that we all have reasons to see things in our own slightly distorted way. He has a reason to believe he didn’t allow a client to be scapegoated in his own group, just as you might have a reason to believe you were victimized. No one owns the truth. So why is he trying to?

    • Ellen said:

      Yes, I wish those questions had been explored. I like your idea, that no one owns the truth. To be fair, Ron didn’t say I hadn’t been scapegoated when I said I had been, just when I asked him a direct question, if he thought I had been. To explore this more would have been good. Just I was in a state – I couldn’t calm down. Ron actually couldn’t calm down either IMO. We were both locked in a dysfunctional situation. What you say is exactly why Ron would not wish it to be true that I had been scapegoated – it’s kind of his job to see that it doesn’t happen, or if it does, to point that out.

      Ron has good and bad points. I feel differently today about what has happened, as the overwhelm is leaving my body….I know Ron doesn’t understand, but that is nothing new, and we have been able to work together despite this, mostly. He understands some things. I will see. Thanks for the incisive comment Ashana!

  2. Tilda said:

    How horrible. I had hoped Ron would be more helpful to you, listen, and work through the issues.
    I wonder, does he think you are stronger than you feel at the moment? And understand you need support, not criticism. Or is he reacting to your criticism of his group?
    To me, it does sound like you have been made the scapegoat. And that is just wrong.
    Try to be gentle with yourself, you don’t deserve this.

    • Ellen said:

      Yes, he does think I am stronger. I challenge him a lot and I don’t think he is used to it, so he scrambles. He really doesn’t get that I need support when I am overwhelmed in the group. I think it’s maybe not easy to tell that I’m overwhelmed, because a part of me keeps talking and arguing.

      Today I feel different about what happened. It’s a kind of scapegoating – it’s very hard when a majority of a group is saying negative things about you. But in a way, group is for people working out their projections. Still, I’m not sure it’s supposed to be so negative about one individual. I do fear that Ron agrees with the group about me, and that hurts.

      Thanks very much for your support Tilda.

  3. Gel said:

    Yuck! sorry
    I too was wondering how R has the truth….sure he can have his educated opinion but the absolute truth about you or the situation?

    I feel sorry that you don’t get more of what your soul and heart needs with R or the group.

    Wish I knew how to send a hug to you.

    • Ellen said:

      Yes, it’s good to keep that in mind. He really doesn’t have the truth with a capital T!

      Thanks for the hug and the support Gel.

  4. Ruth said:

    Perhaps you may want to consider the possibility that Ron’s measured, creepy voice was about him controlling his emotion. I have heard this from some people. I had a boss that when he was angry he would talk softer and more measured. I am highly tuned to people’s emotions due to my need to survive. I overheard someone say that this boss never gets angry. I disagreed and pointed out how his anger response was to get quieter. The other person gasped as they finally realized he did get mad. I agree with the other comments. Feeling like a scapegoat is familiar territory so you would recognize it before someone from the outside, like Ron, might recognize it is happening. I noticed that counselors get kind of cranky when they miss something that they should have caught. After all, Ron is human with his own set of prejudices. Hope you give your self plenty of pamper time this week end. Hang on to your truth… you know what you felt, believe in yourself. Cyber hugs just seem inadequate some times.

    • Ellen said:

      You are making a lot of sense Ruth. I think it was about him controlling his emotion. I think he takes it very personally that I walked out of group, though I was not thinking much about him at the time. Course, if he’d been able to offer me support, I wouldn’t have walked. Anyway. The weekend is actually pretty nice so far. Thanks for sharing that story and for the support. Hugs to you.

  5. I’m sorry you’re having such a difficult time w/ group and therapy. 😦

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