Am I not suited to talk therapy?

Lostvoice

New Here
I’ve been in therapy for about a year, started off once a week and now it’s twice weekly.

I’m constantly thinking about my therapist and judging myself and how I feel based on what I think she’s thinking and feeling towards me.

I’ve spent this weekend getting in a complete state because she’s been hot and cold with me and I just don’t seem to be able to handle that.

I don’t think I’ve always been this way, I don’t think I’ve ever cared so much about anything or anyone. Maybe my mum when I was little but I soon learnt that that’s a waste of time.

I don’t know how to be better at handling my emotions. I don’t know if I’d be better off just numbing everything again. Everything hurts too much! I feel way too much. I just want a break.
 
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arfie

MyPTSD Pro
I don’t know how to be better at handling my emotions. I don’t know if I’d be better off just numbing everything again. Everything hurts too much! I feel way too much.

awareness of your ignorance is the first step toward learning. it sounds to me like you are well-suited to talk therapy and that the therapy is doing its job. the darkest hour is before the dawn. i hope you can lean, ever so gently, into that discomfort and allow the breakthroughs to happen.

steadying support while you learn how to allow the proverbial new day to dawn.
 

OliveJewel

MyPTSD Pro
I’m constantly thinking about my therapist and judging myself and how I feel based on what I think she’s thinking and feeling towards me.
This is a good sign that she is reparenting you.
hot and cold with me and I just don’t seem to be able to handle that.
I don’t think I’ve always been this way,
Hot and cold are ways that you gauge someone’s feelings? Do you talk about it? Like ask, “You seemed cold about…”.
I don’t think I’ve ever cared so much about anything or anyone. Maybe my mum when I was little but I soon learnt that that’s a waste of time.
This right here is probably why you are experiencing that transference with your T. Your little self needed consistency in care, but you learned that was unavailable. It’s scary when someone offers you consistent care because you’re waiting for it to be pulled away like what happened with your mom.
 

Movingforward10

MyPTSD Pro
I’m constantly thinking about my therapist and judging myself and how I feel based on what I think she’s thinking and feeling towards me.
I do this all the time! All. The. Time.
Constantly.
It's tiring and draining.

But the good news is: doesn't always need to be like this.

We're in therapy for a reason. Or many reasons.
Some of those reasons take a long time to work through, and this issue is one of those long running ones. I've been in therapy for 2 1/2 years and only just tackling this issue with my T. So you're doing ok!

Do you talk to your T about this?
 

Lostvoice

New Here
@OliveJewel ‘with the hot and cold’ i mean that if her approach to me seems to shift suddenly it sends an automatic alarm to panic, not something I actively choose as a way to determine how she feels about me.

Yes, my mum was very, very unwell and unpredictable and let me come to harm from others.

@Movingforward10 Yes we did speak about it today, she says she is working on reducing my dependency by gradually being less available. We see each other a lot, not just in sessions, so it’s complicated.

i love learning. discovering yet another of my ignorant spots is but an opportunity to learn.

but, equally. . . there are things in this world that aren't worth learning. if i am deliberately ignoring you, am i "igNORant?"
it is good to keep an open mind, but not so open that my brain falls out. balance in all things.
Wouldn’t mind my brain falling out for a bit to be fair 😂
 

fern

Confident
It's important to be mindful that you may be subcounsciously projecting onto her. Especially as you say that she reminds you of your mom in some ways. That makes our brains do screwey things without realizing it. I definitely have projected onto therapists before, especially if they are more "clinical" feeling. I do best with therapists who feel very down to earth, open and friendly. Then I don't have as many thoughts about them judging me or whatever.

I think therapy making you uncomfortable is a universal sign that it is working on stuff. If you have concrete examples that your therapist is rude towards you or makes you uncomfortable in ways beyond professional help, then of course it's worth looking finding a different one. But it's imporant to distinguish the difference between distorted thoughts/emotional flares and reality. That's something that I really struggle with.

Sounds like she is setting boundaries in ways to help you grow as an individual. And that push is bringing up Feels 🌱
 

Movingforward10

MyPTSD Pro
We see each other a lot, not just in sessions, so it’s complicated.
That does sound complicated. You obviously don't need to share if you don't want to, but I wonder about the relationship outside of sessions as that could be something to explore. Relationships with T's need to be boundaired and it's for then to manage that.
 

Lostvoice

New Here
@fern no she’s nothing like my mum, I don’t make that comparison, and she’s a humanistic therapist so nothing clinical thankfully. She’s not rude. I’m questioning me, and my attachment issues, not her.

Yes, healthy boundaries are what we’re working on and me realising the difference between stricter boundaries and feelings of rejection.

That does sound complicated. You obviously don't need to share if you don't want to, but I wonder about the relationship outside of sessions as that could be something to explore. Relationships with T's need to be boundaired and it's for then to manage that.

I walked her dog for 3 years prior to starting therapy, then dog sadly passed and she got another one a short while later. Stuff came up in our conversations and we, after some thought decided that going ahead with the therapeutic relationship was the way forward as I was unable to get the right support through nhs and can’t afford private therapy plus major trust issues/not able to feel safe going to therapy with someone I don’t know. Mostly it’s been working well but we have more bumps along the road than we would if we didn’t have a background together.
 
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