Communication With Therapist

LittleBigFoot

MyPTSD Pro
I know lots of people have communication outside of sessions with their T and do just fine with it. I also know I have strooooong attachment issues (like BPD-ish). I’ve had that get messy with previous T’s where the first one if they didn’t respond quick enough panic would set in and I became almost obsessed with getting their attention. The next T went better but not great. There was some obsession but not at the same level. The problem came when texting was encouraged and we’d end up texting a few times a week withe things that had nothing to do with therapy and became a friendship and any progress in session became pretty much nonexistent. We were friends catching up.

This new T I have scares the shit out of me. She seems very competent and passionate about her work and each session has felt like genuine work is happening on both our parts. Before intake we talked about my previous T’s and how I really wanted someone who could maintain clear and strict boundaries. She agreed.

But then last session we talked about me feeling abandoned and hurting last weekend and she says, “you know you can text or email me when you’re feeling like that, right?” I just nodded but I wanted to scream no no no we can’t do that. I can’t go through that again.

I know it’s just a matter of self control. If I can just control myself when I’m bad I can stay away from contacting her and all will be well. But what if I can’t? I know how bad and desperate I can get when I’m truly triggered into something. This past weekend was nothing compared to where it can go. I don’t want to get bad, reach out, and then have it all go to hell all over again.

But then I’m wondering if that might be her intention? Not for me to break necessarily but to push for me to attach to her so she can fix those parts. I know she works with IFS (what we’ve begun diving into) and dislikes traditional talk therapy/traditional CBT and is more attachment based. So should I allow that to happen? Should I allow myself to become reliant on communication with her and let her help me with that? Because I can easily avoid those parts of me if I stay detached, but does that mean they won’t ever get healed?

I don’t know what I should do.
 

Movingforward10

MyPTSD Pro
I hear you.
I *need* boundaires with T. And I freak the f out over email with her. ("she hasn't responded within X hours = she hates me = total meltdown).

But....

Maybe talk to her about this? Explain how you felt about the previous T's?
Maybe there can be clear agreements about : when you can email, how often, when and how often she will respond etc. So that there are boundaires around email/text.

I think your T was offering professional care to you by saying that there is an option of communicating with her between sessions. That's what my T says.

You could always try the email/text, and if it still makes you worried, you can stop it again? But communicating about it all with your T is the way to go I think.
 

Friday

Moderator
I also know I have strooooong attachment issues (like BPD-ish).
Have you considered doing a DBT run?

DBT groups nearly always include 24/7 phone access (phone staffed with different shifts of people so there’s literally always someone there to pick up, whose job is to be picking up), for the first several months… in addition to scheduled daily & weekly contact with the therapists & group. Then, over the course of the year? Both scheduled & unscheduled contact is gradually stepped back, as people are learning and practicing skills.
 

LittleBigFoot

MyPTSD Pro
Have you considered doing a DBT run?

DBT groups nearly always include 24/7 phone access (phone staffed with different shifts of people so there’s literally always someone there to pick up, whose job is to be picking up), for the first several months… in addition to scheduled daily & weekly contact with the therapists & group. Then, over the course of the year? Both scheduled & unscheduled contact is gradually stepped back, as people are learning and practicing skills.

I will definitely have to look into this.
 

DharmaGirl

MyPTSD Pro
I had a T who had me email everyday between sessions. It created a HUGE dependency. The following therapist said she was not going to help me, she would teach me how to help myself. It was like a weight had been lifted off me. It wasn't that I couldn't email her, it was that I felt empowered even if I did.
 
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