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Posts Tagged ‘unfulfilled needs’

Existential Freefall – Part I

April 20, 2015 18 comments

I was going to name this post “Existential Freefall or What I’ve Been Trying to Remember for 20 years (Well, 50 Really)” but that seemed a bit unwieldy, even for me, so I went with the shorter version. 🙂 I had a major breakthrough in my session last Friday, so much so I think I will be processing it for quite a while. I was finally able to remember something that I have been trying to bring into consciousness for over twenty years. Now that I’ve remembered it, I get why it took me so long. I’m going to try and explain both the memory and my process of getting there, but think I want to say up front that this memory is from such a young age, that it’s really about remembering the feelings at a time when I didn’t have the cognitive abilities to describe what I was feeling. Not to mention that trauma can send anyone of any age back to a per-verbal state. So anything I say is in essence a translation from my child self to my adult self. Words feel inadequate to describe the intensity of the feelings. And the feelings are continuing to unfold, I have been feeling sadness, and relief, and grief, and joy, and gratitude, (so much gratitude!) and weariness … you name it, it seems to be rolling through my system. But the key word here is “through.” I’m alive, all of these feelings mean I’m alive. I’ll take it. Continue Reading

The Ache of Longing and Loss

December 10, 2014 52 comments

Greetings gentle readers,
I know my posting has been rather scant lately. I have been doing some really intense work in therapy and sometimes when I am in the midst of deep work, it can be hard to speak of it. I also think unconsciously, I may be attempting to “contain” the energy so that it stays in therapy. Writing about it can almost spring a leak in the therapeutic vessel. But tonight I feel so drained and bereft that I need to make some connection. I am hoping that talking about my session today will help. Continue Reading

Wanted, not needed, to go

Greetings dear readers,
First I want to say thank you to all of you who commented and read my last post (Therapy isn’t enough Redux) and all the support you offered. There was a lot of very wise insight offered, along with a lot of love and compassion, that helped me get through a very difficult passage. It was through reading all of your comments that I was able to go through the process of understanding my feelings and what was going on and through your support that I found the strength.

I had actually talked on the phone with a good friend of mine who had gently asked how I was feeling about my previous session? She has known me a long time and witnessed my many creative attempts to flee from BN, right after I had allowed myself to move closer and the intimacy to grow deeper. She pointed out that I had felt very close to BN and deeply cared for and in that past, that usually scared me. Evidently that dynamic is still alive and kickin’ and predictable. 🙂 Continue Reading

Deprivation in Therapy

March 10, 2014 22 comments

Dr. Jeffrey Smith has hit another one out of the park on his blog Moments of Change. He recently put up an excellent post that discusses what a therapist does and does not provide for a client in therapy and how you deal with the pain of the deprivations and why deprivation is sometimes necessary. This has been a big theme in my healing and I think he does an excellent job explaining what is a very complex issue. If you have ever struggled with what you cannot have from your therapist (Lord knows, I have!) go read this article: Healing a Damaged Self.

Disruption and Rage Part I

August 9, 2013 23 comments

TW*** CSA, rage and really bad language

Well, I think I have hidden in my cave long enough and its time to poke my head out and talk about what is going on with me. I am most of the way through a four week break in therapy due to BN’s vacation. In what we both agreed was spectacularly bad timing, we had a really brutal session, including a difficult disruption, just before the break. It involved what I will readily concede was a re-enactment on my part and a lot of rage towards my parents. It also included my best effort to date of expressing anger at BN in the moment. I have been struggling to stay stable and try to understand all that is going on but to be very honest, I am feeling GONZO confused so part of why I am writing is to try and sort through what is going on and understand.

A disclaimer before I go on, which is that I am angry and in a way that doesn’t lend itself to being particularly fair to the other person. So I want to say up front, and center, that BN was very patient with me, very encouraging about me allowing myself to just express my anger and amazingly non-defensive. If I had been talking to me on the crisis line, I probably would have ended the call as being too abusive, but he thanked me (!) for my honesty. Continue Reading

Time to Run: The Power of the Amygdala

August 5, 2013 31 comments

A member on the psychcafe forum, Closed Doors (CD), started a discussion about what dependency on your therapist means. In the course of the discussion, I ended up writing a formula for what happens when we want to run from our wish to move closer. With CD’s kind permission, I am going to reproduce it here.

She asked for examples of how other people have been dependent on their therapists. In discussing what dependence looks like, the conversation turned to the shame that can arise around recognizing that we have needs and how terribly vulnerable it is to express them. CD is returning to therapy after a long break, which she took because the feelings and need for her therapist were feeling too intense (Raise your hands if you have ever experienced this. Yes, yes, I see those hands. You can put ’em down now. :D)

Continue Reading

What’s a therapist to do?

Alex asked the question below over on the Ask AG page and I am going to offer my take on it.

I am wondering if you have any insight on a psychotherapist’s role when a patient is demonstrating persistent, self-destructive behaviors? I’m referring to damaging, non-suicidal behaviors that artificially regulate emotions– such as self-injury, eating disordered behaviors (restricting, purging, etc.), reckless impulsivity, or drug/alcohol abuse (though this last one might be slightly different, I guess, since it compromises your mental capacity more extremely).

This is a really excellent question and in some ways goes to the heart of what therapy is about. I do want to be upfront though in that I am still working through my own behaviors with food so I approach this topic with fear and trembling. I would recommend approaching this post with some skepticism, dear readers, as I may be speaking out of the wrong orifice. 🙂 Continue Reading