I wish there was a rule book or a guide about how therapy is supposed to work, what’s taboo or encouraged, or what’s not a helpful practice. I’ve had just enough background into how a therapist is trained (if I typed out one of my neighbors PhD papers, I typed out a thousand of them when he was going through his training to be a geriatric psychologist).
At this point, I think I’m failing at taking advantage of the whole therapy thing because I talk way too much.
Short of bringing in one of my blogs to the therapist, I’m just not sure how to say this because I always choke up and cry when there’s things that must be said but which are hard to enunciate.
Yes, I’ve been told I’m arrogant. I don’t see it, but who am I to impose my world view on someone else’s opinion?
In my case, I’m going to therapy because it’s “recommended” as part of going through the change of life / grief counseling of going on disability, and because it’s recommended as part of being accepted for stem cell therapy qualification / consideration.
My therapist is a lovely woman, a life coach, with children and grandchildren, and it just seems wrong to be running off at the mouth and know very little reciprocal information about her. I know that it’s for her own safety that she not talk about herself. I know it’s for my own balanced therapy that the sessions be all about me. But, honestly, it’s frustrating to get in there and feel you have to participate and be “on”, and trying and figure out the social cues for when to shut up and let silence talk.
Therapy is so very different than a regular give and take conversation, you know, where you debate all the deep stuff and then go back to your cave and ponder all the stuff that you learned from honest discourse from BOTH sides.
Maybe I’m more of a group therapy person? But, being a Pollyanna, who doesn’t really think she has issues, wouldn’t that be arrogant, too?
Not sure what to make of all of this, but I went to therapy after 3 months yesterday, and it was all about how much my life had changed since we last met.
– got approved for disability
– bought a wreck of a house (and dealing with my wishes to NEVER be an owner)
– all the money I’m spending on rehabbing the unit to make it sanitary and suitable
– whether or not I was shooting myself in the foot to put down money on the UK trip (but, also an acknowledgement that I couldn’t do anything else. I need a positive adventure goal in order to get on with the necessities of life).
– The “Ticket to Work” program and resources through the SSD office for getting disabled people off their butts and back into a work program, without jeopardizing their benefits while they “try” to see what accommodations may be needed, and whether or not they are lying to themselves about their own capabilities.
– Frustrations with the lawyer’s restrictions, and my trying to limit my efforts to 1-4 hours per day.
– Frustrations with not being acknowledged by my employer and its insurance agent as handicapped, and having to jump through hoops just to “prove” how incapacitated I am. Ridiculous.
So, we spent an hour going round and round on my naval gazing issues, and it feels more like I was reporting the news than actually figuring out why I’m there (beyond the sessions being prep work as part of showing compliance with the stem sell program. Really a means to an end, without any emotional engagement).
– We talked about Hospice and “Transitions” to hospice, which says I’m exactly what they are looking for in a transitions patient, however, I’m too well or too active.
– We talked about the Death with Dignity law, and trying to find a way to document my wishes now, while I’m well, so that there won’t be an argument at the end, 4-5 years or more from now, when it comes down to figuring out if I should be euthanized and people then want to challenge my state of mind and label me “depressed” vs. the reality. which is “determined”.
– We talked about a number of things, including the fact that I hate other people’s noise, and how hard it was for me to adjust to apartment living with rude and inconsiderate people about (because I can hear my Mom and Grandfather with every slammed door and every stomped foot yelling at me, “Quiet! Think of the neighbors”, and yet clearly, CA, doesn’t have the same neighborly restrictions I was used to from being in MA while growing up).
– We talked about the fact that I find owning a house just a recipe to gather more stuff around me at a point of life when I’m supposed to be jettisoning stuff, so it really didn’t make any sense to give me more room for storage. Or, homework for selling the place if I live long enough to go into assisted living or hospice towards the end.
So many different conversations, and yet I walk out of there feeling like I’ve just given an oral report and paid for the privilege of having someone listen to me vs. having it make a difference in my quality of life.
Whatever it is that I’m supposed to be getting from these sessions eludes me, as I’m happy to be left to my own devices to entertain myself.
Anyone else reading this blog and who have undergone therapy feel this way?