Tag Archives: therapist

The Patient/Therapist Relationship

I have been seeing my therapist every week for 7 years. She knows every single detail of my life, every single person who’s ever played a role in it, and every single innermost thought I’ve ever had.

Me: “I obviously want to have kids, and I know we should get on that soon, but I honestly can’t stomach the idea of bringing a human into a Trump-led America. Is that crazy?”

Therapist: “No, that’s not crazy. I felt the same way bringing kids into the world right after 9/11, but it’s important to–”

Me: “YOU HAVE KIDS??!?!?!”

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Bitch Knows Me

Therapist (the second she opens her office door): “Unfortunately, I’m out of tissues, so I went and grabbed this. Hopefully it will suffice.” (hands me a roll of toilet paper)

Me (laughing): “I won’t need this! Everything is good!”

Therapist (cheerfully doubtful): “Well, you know. You’re going through a lot of transitions right now so…just in case.”

Me: “I know, but they’re all good transitions! Trust me, I’m doing GREAT!”

I used over half the roll.

A mega roll.

She let me keep the rest for the ride home.

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It Should Be Illegal For a Therapist to Do This

**Warning: This is a rant. I am fully aware that there are MUCH larger problems in the world than the one I am experiencing right now, like hunger and poverty and sex slavery and Donald Trump and teachers getting through their first day of school today, which is inevitably a giant shitshow (good luck, teacher friends! You got this!) But this is my blog where I get to complain about shit. So I’m going to. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.**

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Not to be dramatic, but I feel the need to be dramatic right now. PROBABLY BECAUSE I DIDN’T GET TO HAVE MY THERAPY SESSION TODAY AND NOW MY EMOTIONS ARE BATSHIT.

I barely slept last night. No acute reason, just a typical bout of wide-awake anxiety that I couldn’t calm, no matter how much of Amy Schumer’s The Girl With The Lower Back Tattoo I tried to consume to distract myself. No big deal, it happens. I’m used to it. I ended up going out to the couch at 5am just to get a change of scenery from the toss-and-turn of the bed. I managed to finally fall asleep at 6am. Then my alarm jarred me to life at 9am.

I know, I know. No one feels sorry for me. I got to wake up at 9am! But I’m simply providing the context for my current state of VENOM SPEWING ANNOYANCE. I was already in an anxious state of mind, and then got only 3 hours of sleep. NOT A GOOD PLACE TO START. YES THESE CAPS ARE NECESSARY. I CONSIDERED TYPING THIS ENTIRE POST IN CAPS BUT THEN I REINED MYSELF THE FUCK IN. YOU’RE WELCOME.

The reason the alarm went off at all was because I had an early therapy session all the way downtown. I have tutoring clients uptown later in the day, so it was not exactly ideal to trek downtown for this session, especially on no sleep, but I figured that I probably needed it right now. When I don’t want to go to therapy, I take that as a sign that I need it the most. That’s called being a responsible crazy person (“The More You Know” sidenote: Sometimes people get confused about my cavalier use of non-PC terms such as “crazy person” in reference to my mental illness. So to clarify– I’m allowed to call myself crazy. You’re not. Unless you’re also crazy. It’s like with any other minority group. People within the group can call themselves and each other whatever they want in order to make it through the day, lighten the gravity of a situation, and cope with the daily challenges of their existence. These are the rules, as they have been inscribed in the book of life. Seriously, kids chant about this in Hebrew at their bar mitzvahs. I’m sure of it.)

So instead of calling my therapist and begging for a phone session, I hauled my tired, anxious ass off the couch, packed a suitcase (literally– my doorman yelled, “Have a great trip!” as I walked out the door) with all the assessment materials I’d need for my afternoon clients, and decided I’d show face at the session, park myself downtown at a coffee shop for the rest of the day to get some work done, and then see my clients from there. Not ideal, as I felt like garbage, and even less ideal because I would have to skip my morning workout (somewhat important for my sanity), but I prioritized the therapy because I know it’s most important for my well being. Oh, and it’s fucking expensive.

So imagine my surprise when I arrived at my therapist’s office, after a 45 minute public transportation journey, carrying a SUITCASE, in the 90 degree heat, to see this on the outside of her office door.

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No text. No call. No email. Instead she decided it would be best for me to travel all the way to her office in order to find out I came for absolutely nothing. COOL DECISION, person responsible for my sanity!

I could have slept in today and caught up on the sleep I didn’t get, which certainly would have helped my mood. Or I could have gone for a run– also a guaranteed health boost. Instead, I prioritized my therapy appointment, and rearranged my entire schedule around it. Only to get rejected via POST IT NOTE.

Now I know exactly how Carrie Bradshaw felt.

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The understanding part of me has to assume that something pretty bad came up very last minute, and she’s completely incapacitated. I can’t think of any other reason why she wouldn’t just shoot me a text.

But the fire breathing monster part of me is pretty pissed.

Am I nuts for thinking this is entirely unprofessional, unacceptable and possibly deserving of a free session? I literally have no idea if I am overreacting. I simply can’t be logical, because my emotions are all over the damn place. Ugh, I really need to speak to my therapi….

Oh wait.

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Therapy

Therapist: “And why do you think you had that thought in response to that event?”

Me: “I don’t think there’s a reason, I think it’s just what popped into my head. For no reason at all. Can’t I just have a thought and there be no reason for it?”

Therapist: “If I believed that, I’d be out of a job.”

Me: “Touché. And I guess to be able to justify the cost of this session, I should think of a reason.”

Therapist: “Sure, if that motivates you.”

Me: “I think maybe my thought in response to this event signifies that deep down, I am just a frightened, lost, ignorant soul simply stumbling through the dark, terrifying abyss that is life.”

(long pause)

Therapist: “Alright rein it in.”

 

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It’s a Gorgeous Day Outside and My Depression Doesn’t Give a Fuck

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You woke up this morning at the ripe hour of 10:00am, took one look at the beautiful sunshine cascading through the window and thought, “Fuck. It’s a gorgeous day.” Then you covered your head with your pillow and sobbed.

Because you know who doesn’t care that it’s a gorgeous day? Your Depression.

Depression isn’t impressed by the abundant sunshine and the flowers blooming, because all Depression wants to do is lie down, hold its head between its hands, play a reel of guilt-ridden thoughts on loop, and pray for bedtime. But gorgeous weather gets in the way of this. Gorgeous weather causes friends and social media to say, “You should definitely go outside– it’s gorgeous out!” And of course you SHOULD go outside. And if you were you, you WOULD go outside. But you’re not you right now. Depression has the reins, and Depression laughs in your face when you think about leaving the bed. Depression says, “Go ahead, sad sack! Go try to ‘enjoy’ that weather. But if you think that weather is going to get rid of this headache, infuse you with energy, or make you stop hating yourself, then you really haven’t been paying attention for the past 20 years. Worthless idiot.”

Yeah. Depression is THAT mean.

But you try anyway. You swallow three Advil, force yourself to drink water, and put on your sneakers. You jog a whole city block before Depression says, “Nope, not happening, loser!” and slows your jog to a brisk, then painfully slow, walk. YOU are a marathon runner. YOU have trained for and finished 7 half marathons and 3 full marathons in the past five years. But Depression laughs at you for thinking that makes a difference right now. What YOU can do doesn’t matter. YOU are not running the show right now. YOU just get to watch while Depression takes a body that normally sprints every single morning and paralyzes it to a slow, walking-through-mud trudge.

But you run anyway. Not in the way you want to, or as fast as you want to, and only intermittently, for less than two blocks at a time. Because while you’re powerless to fight Depression in its entirety, there’s nothing wrong with giving it a quick FUCK YOU every few minutes. You make it to Central Park, and inherently, somewhere inside you, you know it’s beautiful. You know you’ve been waiting all winter for this kind of weather, for this kind of scenery, and you know what you should feel. But Depression doesn’t give a fuck. Depression takes the opportunity of a gorgeous day and uses it to make you feel even worse about yourself. Depression says, “See all these happy people enjoying the day? Bet you wish you were one of them! But nope, you’re just here, wallowing in your misery, looking around and feeling sorry for yourself. You can’t appreciate ANY of it. Because you’re selfish. And spoiled. Do you know how many people would kill for the luxury of being able to spend a whole beautiful spring day in Central Park? You’re pathetic.”

Like I said. Depression is a mean motherfucker.

But you keep going. Because while the walk/jog isn’t making you feel any better, and the weather isn’t giving you even a modicum of the energy that everyone swears it will, and every step feels like it’s sucking out a piece of your deadened soul, you know that if you can at the very least hit your daily Fit Bit step goal for the day, you will have ONE victory to hang your hat on. ONE little seemingly superficial victory that you can point to and say “I did this thing today.” ONE tiny victory before you crawl desperately back into bed and cry into the Kindle that you so badly want to read but Depression, with its crippling assault on your concentration, won’t allow you to. ONE minuscule victory that will allow you to whisper a semi-satisfied, “Fuck you, Depression” as you fall into a pill-induced, fitful slumber tonight.

And you do it. You hit the goal.

ONE small victory against Depression.

Maybe tomorrow there will be two.

Sometimes I Wish She Listened Less

Therapist: “So do you feel relieved now that you finally gave your boss notice that you’re quitting your job?”

Me: “Oh my god, YES. I mean, don’t get me wrong, I’m anxious about the upcoming change. And it’s bittersweet. And I’m really going to miss being with my coworkers every day, several of whom are my closest friends. But I’m also excited, and know it’s the right thing. But more than anything I’m just really proud of myself. Usually, if I’m in a situation that’s comfortable, it takes me forever to get out of it, even when I know it’s what I need to do. But this time, I knew in like December that I needed out, and by February, I made the decision and did it.”

Therapist: “Right! (pause) Well..2010.”

Me: “Excuse me?”

Therapist: “You knew in December, 2010.”

Me: “Well, I mean, I didn’t really know then.”

Therapist (flipping through her notes): “December 6, 2010– ‘I need to quit my job. I’m unhappy in the system. I don’t feel fulfilled. I feel like if I stay one more year, I’m going to go insane.”

Me: “Right but that was just venting– I didn’t like KNOW know.”

Therapist (still quoting): “‘I know this with every fiber of my being.'”

Me: “Oh.”

Alright well I did it so BACK THE FUCK OFF.

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