I went tentatively to my last session, having cancelled the previous. It actually went better than I thought it would though.
The topic of the hour was how I feel after sessions. I’d cancelled my previous week’s session because it took me so many lost days to recover from. I tell Ron that I need to know how this pain I feel after sessions is helping. Also that I need some kind of framework for understanding what is happening. The way I feel does not really seem to relate to how upset or not I become in a session. Ron says he has not been able to determine what it is that sets my despairing feelings off. Sometimes we have one kind of session, sometimes another. It’s not clear what is going on.
I once again talk about the newer ways of approaching trauma, and recommend the book The Body Keeps the Score. Ron says he is working in a different paradigm – it’s as if I was trying to explain homeopathy to him and he was practicing Western medicine. And I argue back that knowing some of this new research doesn’t mean he has to act a certain way. It’s just good knowledge to have. For instance, the way trauma can led the nervous system to swing to extremes, and that it’s a good goal to therefore try to find a middle path between huge emotions and shut down.
So there was that discussion. I started to feel like it was an argument, which then made me uncomfortable, but Ron said he didn’t feel it was an argument – we were just having a discussion. When I used to argue with my father, he ended up completely rejecting me, shunning me in the family. So I’m not that comfortable with argument, because I think I will be rejected.
At some point, Ron hit on the idea that it may be our relationship which is triggering off my hopelessness after session. Which just gave me pause. This could be. I hadn’t really thought of this. So we were supposed to discuss our relationship, which to tell the truth, I didn’t know how to do.
We discussed a bit how I felt about him. How younger parts are very attached, but that I personally feel detached and indifferent.
I actually think this is true or at least part of the truth. I somehow feel rejected after sessions. Since Ron is not rejecting me those feelings must be coming from me. I feel like it’s the end of the world, which as a young child, maybe I felt like when my father rejected me. I loved my father very much, whereas I didn’t bond very much with my mother.
This time after session I felt better. I let myself feel supported by Ron, and there are traumatized parts of me that are so thirsty for acceptance and care, it’s scary to feel them. The next day, I was again very sad, but I kept reminding myself that Ron cares about me and is on my side. And by Sunday, I was fine again.
I’m not sure how to talk about a relationship, but the little I did seems to have helped. This is such a new thought for me. It feels hopeful, because this explanation does make sense to me of something that I couldn’t make sense of and that seemed destructive and not healing. We’ll see. Maybe we can continue somehow by talking about how I’m feeling about my therapist.
It’s funny because I have no trouble believing he does care, once I let myself do so. It’s not like I have to argue myself into it. Maybe for whatever reason, where other people assume an important person cares about them if they act in trustworthy ways, I do not assume that. I assume that anyone close does not care about me at all. Assuming someone cares would make the therapy feel better I’m sure.