Memorable Quotes

Had another very intense session with BN today who remains, thank heaven, completely unflappable. I’m starting to feel this insane impulse to just keep stepping up my behavior to find the breaking point; then I realize, I just don’t know where I would go. 🙂 Life just keeps throwing curve balls recently, and I guess I can take some comfort in the fact that I seem to react consistently, with shame. I joke, but I have been very triggered as of late, so that many feelings from when I am young have surfaced. I have recently experienced some difficulties that when viewed through an adult lens, I can clearly see are not my fault and even have nothing to do with me. I’m just in the wrong place at the wrong time. But my emotional reaction? It’s a deep reaction of shame, a small voice asking “what is wrong with me?” “what am I doing that I am treated this way?” “Please tell me what I am doing wrong so I can fix it and get this to stop because it’s too scary!” The voice of the powerless child, desperately trying to exert control over an impossible to handle situation.

I did something in session I have literally never done before. I had forgotten my blanket, so when I came through the door, I asked BN if I could borrow his. Now normally, I just wrap myself in it. The sense of being held, helps me feel contained and safer. But this time I found myself, ranting along, anger pouring out about a situation, the intensity climbing, when suddenly, I pulled the blanket totally over my head, and completely covered in the blanket, I melted down.  BN gave me a few minutes, and I connected. I came back out from under the blanket and said “that’s why I’m trying to stay angry, this is really about shame. I’ve never done that before, have I, covered my head?” and BN told me I had never done that before. And that’s when I connected to the deep sense of shame, of something being terribly wrong with me coming up. Which brings me to the quotes.

BN asked if I could describe what I was feeling when I was under the blanket, and I apologized for the grossness of the metaphor, and then proceeded to say what was, I think, the most disgusting metaphor I have ever used in therapy:

It’s like my core is just a huge pustule of shame.

As we discussed the shame, I also connected to how unsafe I was feeling. That part of being triggered was my focusing only on the pain that relationships bring, rather than the good things that come from them. I shared how I had been struggling with the limits of our relationship but in thinking it through had realized it was no different from any other relationship, I would eventually lose them all. We were discussing how the death of my brother has evoked a deep awareness of the impermanence of all relationships, at which point BN came out with an absolute gem:

If the only way to have a safe relationship was to have one with an immortal being, we’re all screwed.


He was so very clear that I was doing what I needed to do, bringing my shame into the light, talking about the feelings, connecting despite the shame. He talked about how well I was doing and then referred to our session before, when he had mentioned my progress and then said some patients (specifically me in the past :)) would have heard that as “you’re done, move it along!” at which point, I interrupted and, to my shock, heard this coming out of my mouth:

Are you f$%^ing crazy, I am not going to stop coming now!

So there you go, on the positive side, I have evidently become more comfortable with going to therapy. 🙂

He returned to talking about my progress and how he knew I was frustrated with how I was feeling, but I was really working through these things, at which point, we had this exchange:

AG: (wearily) I feel like the world’s slowest therapy patient

BN: That is the voice of your shame speaking

AG: I wish my shame would shut the f&*@ up!

Best quote of all?

I’m here. Call if you need to. You’re going to be ok.

I love that man. Within the boundaries of course, but I love him. Having a secure base makes such a crucial difference.

  1. MetaMantraMe
    October 3, 2012 at 10:56 pm

    I’m so proud of you, AG.


    • October 5, 2012 at 10:15 pm

      Thank you, you have no idea how much I choked up when I read this. ~ AG


  2. October 4, 2012 at 12:05 am

    Your T’s comments are indeed priceless! Yours too…”I wish my shame would shut the f&*@ up.”


    • October 5, 2012 at 10:18 pm

      Hi Hopeful,
      The man really is quotable. I actually have a close friend of mine who calls him WGM (Wise Gray Man) because I quote him so much. 🙂 Glad you liked mine. That one was just a heartfelt desire. 🙂 ~ AG


  3. Bourbon
    October 4, 2012 at 5:36 am

    With a big grin on my face, I give you hugs xx


    • October 5, 2012 at 10:19 pm

      May I give you hugs back? Love that I made you grin! 😀 Thank you its so generous of you to come and comment. I’m so sorry I haven’t been by lately. I’m neglecting you terribly. Just know its me and not you my dear. ~ AG


  4. October 4, 2012 at 9:31 am

    I agree with Hopeful..I love that quote and relate to it very much. It sounds like you had a wonderfully productive session, and also very comforting because it served as another reminder that BN is still there. Sometimes we just need to be reminded of that.



    • October 5, 2012 at 10:22 pm

      Thanks Kashley, I really appreciate BN’s patience in just be able to tell me that over and over. I have really had such a deep sense of not knowing how I would be getting through this without him. There is a strong sense of all that work put into building the relationship paying off, because there is this strong secure place to shelter in. (((hugs))) ~ AG


  5. October 4, 2012 at 11:18 pm

    I am so glad that BN creates a safe environment for you to express and deal with all of this stuff.

    I also love your quote. Do you also find that you swear more in therapy than you do at other times? I sure do.


    • October 5, 2012 at 10:33 pm

      Thanks Cat, and most definitely on the swearing, sometimes I sound like a sailor on leave. I remember the first time I got really angry and actually used bad language, when I calmed down I apologized and BN told me in no uncertain terms, that I was not to worry about it, that adults talk that way when they are upset to express themselves and we can sanitize things too much. I’ve always wondered if he regretted telling me that as I censor myself very little these days. 😉 Ironically, he very rarely uses bad language, but when he does he makes it count. Someone very important to me had told me something that I was very distraught about and when I told BN, in an uncharacteristically spontaneous reaction, he said “you have got to be sh***ing me!” Nothing could have been as reassuring as him saying that. Hope I am not offending. ~ AG


      • October 6, 2012 at 9:16 pm

        Oh, you aren’t offending me at all! 🙂 My T tends to use what I would term “appropriate” language. Meaning, the subject matter certainly warrants the swearing!

        In our last session, she used a word that she doesn’t usually use (can’t remember what it was) and I happened to react at the same time, but it wasn’t actually to the word. However, based on the timing, she cleaned up the word. Despite being in distress, I was amused.

        One of the funny things is that I very rarely swear outside of therapy or personal writing about related topics. I would rather save the words for when it really matters, because when I swear, people really pay attention! lol


      • George
        October 11, 2012 at 1:56 pm

        BN’s last comment there is hilarious. Sometimes mine uses the F or S words (I do so more often, in session), and when he does, it gets me. Makes me laugh, shocks me just a little, or intensifies my existing feelings, and it helps me to know that he understands just how pissed off I am and why. 😉


      • October 25, 2012 at 1:05 pm

        Glad to hear I am not offending as I’d like for you to stick around! 😀

        What you said absolutely describes BN. The words are so much more effective because of how judiciously they are used. 😉


  6. Starrynights
    October 16, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    What a safe and nurturing environment he provides, down to the blanket!! I recently told mine that I can’t believe he doesn’t even have throw pillows on his sofa!
    So wonderful to hear of your amazing insights and relationship with BN!



    • October 25, 2012 at 1:07 pm

      Lovely to hear from you as always, and safe and nurturing is the perfect description. I have often told BN that his office feels like the safest place in the world to me. Hugs back, I hope you are well. 🙂 ~ AG


  7. October 30, 2012 at 11:46 am

    I loved reading this post- and I’m so happy that you have gotten past worrying about being “done” with therapy. Let’s face it- for some of us, therapy is something we need, off and on,as things come up for the rest of our lives. It’s part of managing, like having diabetes and needing regular checkups with your doc! I’m really glad that the BN is willing to do his job and remain there for you. You aren’t the world’s slowest therapy patient Aglet…you are just a person who needs to experience that safe relationship as a part of your ongoing journey- and there is no shame in that. I have to say that there may bot be many T’s out there who wouldn’t be letting their own needs, feelings, guilt, or whatever disturb your progress by now- and consequently trying to make you feel as if you should be “done” so that they could feel like theirs was a job well done.

    The BN is one in a million! And so are you!



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