I lastly began seeing a brand new psychologist after years of feeling conflicted about “firing” my outdated one. I’ve technically seen him 3 times now, however the first appointment was many months in the past, so I really feel like these two current appointments are principally like beginning over with him. Issues are going properly thus far, and I feel I like him. No, I do like him. However will he be an efficient therapist and capable of meet my psychological, emotional, mental, sensible and not-so-practical wants? I actually hope so. I really feel like my life is an out-of-control mess proper now and I would like somebody I can speak to who truly “will get it.” All of it.
I’ve written earlier than about my rising frustration with my first therapist, whom I’ve gone to for the final seven years right here: “Remedy for My Remedy?“. Whereas I’ve been regularly rising increasingly dissatisfied on this relationship and feeling like I’m not fully getting my wants met, it’s nonetheless fairly troublesome to snip the “apron strings” that I’ve develop into tightly tied to through the years. The scenario isn’t minimize and dry or black and white; it’s a posh relationship that’s planted roots seven years deep, full of excellent/unhealthy/joyful/unhappy/consolation/discomfort/frustration/aid–and the listing might go on. Regular relationships are sometimes difficult and filled with contradictions, and I’d argue relationship a affected person develops along with his or her therapist may be simply as emotional and concerned, if no more so. So, in all probability for sure, it’s troublesome to let go, even after I know that I ought to.
In 2011 I started seeing this therapist for an remoted nervousness scenario that I imagine was introduced on by an hostile response to thyroid remedy. My endocrinologist on the time advisable that I see one of many psychologists who practices in the identical well being care system and who sees sufferers who’re combating power sicknesses. On the time, my nervousness was debilitating and I actually wanted assist and help and somebody to speak me by way of it. I additionally agreed with the endocrinologist that it could in all probability be a good suggestion to begin seeing a therapist anyway, to assist take care of the every day ache of residing with RA–and all the things that goes together with it. RA alone is difficult sufficient, by no means thoughts piling on extra well being and life issues.
Trying again, my outdated therapist did assist me fairly a bit to get by way of the thyroid-induced interval of intense nervousness, and he has helped me with different issues in my life, comparable to dropping pounds, job and profession challenges, and extra bouts of medication-induced nervousness and unintended effects. I’ve additionally develop into comfy simply sitting reverse him in his workplace, with my ft propped up within the recliner, sipping a styrofoam cup of lukewarm ready room espresso. I often regarded ahead to those conferences and an opportunity to speak to somebody who wasn’t entwined too intently in my life, comparable to relations or explicit pals.
A few of my favourite experiences and recollections of my conferences with him are the occasions we simply primarily joked round and chit-chatted. These chat classes usually felt like I used to be hanging out with a great pal, which is a good feeling, and particularly after I discover it troublesome to actually know and let myself be recognized by different folks. Nevertheless, jokes should not going to assist me a lot after I don’t really feel like laughing, however need to delve into one thing deeper and extra critical. Concern, trauma, grief, loss, anger, hopelessness, love, relationships, goals, hope….You understand, EMOTIONS. Isn’t that what remedy is meant to be about? I would like to have the ability to speak about greater than tips on how to repair up my resume.
Whereas I felt comfy and joyful exchanging witty banter backwards and forwards with my therapist, the occasions that I’d attempt to steer the dialog into heavier, much less sensible subjects left me annoyed and typically even damage and indignant. The primary time this occurred, which I don’t bear in mind precisely when it was, a large purple flag flapped in my face. I pushed it away, although, and continued to disregard these warnings for years. Going by way of the emotional (and even bodily) labor of discovering somebody new and beginning once more was such a frightening and miserable thought. I didn’t have the power for it. Plus, I appreciated my therapist, though I additionally despised him typically.
Lengthy story brief(ened), the previous few years I’ve been hemming and hawing and dragging my ft about reducing these comfy apron strings and discovering a brand new therapist. Effectively, till now. My integrative physician (at my main care clinic) is definitely the one who advisable that I attempt seeing this new particular person a number of months in the past, which I did as soon as. At one in every of my current appointments together with her I complained to her once more about how I really feel like I can’t completely speak in confidence to my therapist and speak in regards to the issues I need to speak about.
“I do know, I do know. I would like to search out somebody new,” I instructed her.
She kindly and correctly agreed (I’ve grown to belief and respect her 100%, by the best way) and recommended I see the “new man” within the clinic once more. Understanding him herself, she felt that he would in all probability be a greater match for me. This time I made a decision to actually give him an opportunity and see the way it goes. To this point, I’m feeling fairly good and optimistic and hopeful about it, which is a aid. However I’m additionally nonetheless feeling a bit responsible or perhaps a way of loss about kicking my outdated therapist to the curb.
Regardless of my conflicted emotions about letting go of the outdated therapist and attending to know somebody new, I do notice that following my instincts is what’s necessary. My well being and my life should not have time to attend or waste. Hopefully, my outdated therapist-friend shall be understanding of this and my want to maneuver on proper now. I nonetheless like him and care about him and recognize the patient-doctor relationship we’ve had these seven years, after all. We’ve simply perhaps outgrown one another, and that’s completely OK.