As many of you know, my regular therapist is on holiday at the moment, sunning herself in an exotic location. I saw a new “back up” therapist this week. It went ok. Even better than ok. I might even venture to say it was good, although I’m hesitant to be too hopeful, because the first session with p-doc was good, too…but this was good. Really good.
What made it so good? Basic things, like she has a personality and isn’t afraid to laugh, shows compassion without being “wet” and doesn’t make sexual remarks towards her clients. 😉
She acknowledged how weird it would be for me to see a different therapist, and said as a “back up” she really didn’t want to force me to get into anything too nasty if I don’t want to. Yay!
She also said that if I don’t like her, I don’t have to see her. I don’t even have to tell her I don’t want to see her – I can text her or send an email, and she’ll give me the names of some alternatives. How cool is that?
Anyway, the main reason I went to see her is because I’ve been feeling completely overwhelmed this week – I think the reality of buying and selling houses, work, health and life in general has come crashing down, and I’ve found myself almost paralysed and unable to function again.
I talked to her about everything that’s happening, and she said: “Geez, it’s no wonder you feel overwhelmed. I feel overwhelmed just listening to it. Cut yourself some slack and stop being so mean to yourself!”
Not the first time I’ve heard that, of course. She’s right. I am incredibly hard on myself. Guess it’s something to do with childhood and never being “good enough” and working myself into the ground in a desperate bid to be “good enough”, although I never was.
We talked a little bit about family, and my mother’s antics this week. Back up therapist asked, “Is your mother a bit toxic, too?” LOL Guess she’s pretty switched on, this one.
We also talked about work, and I woke in the middle of the night in what I think could be one of those “a-ha” moments. One of the things I don’t like about my job is the politics. I’ve always had a keen interest in big “P” politics, but the small “p” or internal organisational politics leave me cold. If I’m honest I’d say that it actually scares me – I really don’t like confrontation, and I don’t like not knowing where I stand with people. Unfortunately for me, I seem to spend much of my work day tap-dancing around other people, working out tactics for tap-dancing, and then having to confront people.
Anyway, the “a-ha” part of this came at about 3am when I woke realising that perhaps this is related to my childhood. Ok, I might be looking for excuses, but reality is that I’ve spent most of my life tap-dancing around my father, trying to work out what mood he’s in and be “good” so that he doesn’t turn on me – even if I never could be “good enough”.
When I get into a confrontational situation (which happens often in my work), I’m like a child – I shrink away, try to keep everyone happy, which is often not possible, so I spend my time at work stressing and tying myself in knots over all this.
So, in all, my faith in “back up” therapists has been somewhat restored. I’m still feeling overwhelmed and anxious, but realising that’s probably normal in the circumstances. I’m seeing “back up” therapist again next week… in fact weekly until my regular therapist comes back. I’d even venture to say that I’m looking forward to it, but I don’t want to jinx myself! 😉