Dilemma about therapy – to stay or leave

grit

MyPTSD Pro
It looks like you expressed yourself and internal processing extremely well. The me parts you acknowledge is your true real self but it appears your other conflicting selves are more dominant. To me it seems like the therapist is sitting or functioning as your true self until you are ready to assume that ...and the reason you may wonder if she can keep it is. She cannt. At some point you have to take that part back, make stronger and can take care of those conflicting and tiring parts. It is like accepting both good and bad parts. Now you are more or less assigning your good parts out....

You are super aware but maybe afraid to own it.
Your therapist can only keep it up but will eventually fail cause she cannt function your good parts for you. It is complicated but I am shocked and surprised you could not only articulate but write it down. Can you put on percentage of the conflicting parts against the "you" parts. That may give you an idea how to move the needle.
 

barefoot

MyPTSD Pro
@grit It’s not really that I see the conflicting parts as good or bad. I think one is scared and wants to attach more to my therapist because she seems kind and caring...and the other is scared and would rather run from the relationship (made more so by the fact that my therapist seems kind and caring!)

I can see where they’re both coming from. They are both just trying to feel safe, I think, but going about it in opposite ways.
 

Survivor3

MyPTSD Pro
We talked last week. It felt like a bit of a relief to share my frustrations with therapy and to talk through how conflicted I feel re: continuing or not. Though it did also feel quite excruciating.

It really feels like there's a part of me that would spend time with her every day if I could. And another part that doesn't want anything to do with it and never wanted to go to therapy in the first place. And then there's me. And those two parts are in conflict with each other a lot of the time (not only about my therapist) And it sort of feels like actual me is always third place in the pecking order. Not sure if that makes sense? But it can be hard to tune into what I really want/need when these two aspects are loud and convincing and both polar opposites of each other! It's frustrating and tiring.

Anyway...she seemed to have reflected on our previous conversation a lot. We have now agreed a key context for us to work on (to help to increase focus and momentum rather than darting around different topics every session) and she made suggestions for how she could help hold the focus/accountability to help to keep us on track, which sounded good. She said she's going to write stuff down and keep the notes next to her when we speak and that she'll use that to flag when we go off track so that I can then decide what to pursue. It sounds helpful. I'm just not sure she will stick to it! But I would like to try. Because if we have a clearer focus and can build momentum I feel like sessions will be more productive and I will get more value, more consistently from our work.

I'm thinking I want to have a good run at it to see where we get to with digging in to that. So, I'm planning on doing weekly 60 min sessions until the end of the year and to then review. If the things we agreed last week aren't really happening or if I still feel like it's not really working for me, I guess that'll be my clear answer.

If it is working better and I am getting a lot out of every session (in terms of what we're working on – not just that part of me wants to see her every week!) then I guess we can either continue as we are or drop to fortnightly. I just want to give it a good try seeing as we have had a very open discussion around what isn't working for me and agreed some things to try.

I don't know whether this is a good thing (it feels like it, largely?) because I managed to express that things weren't working for me and we're now going to change things up so I get what I need – and that we will now be more consistently productive and build more momentum/make more progress around what we're working on.

Or whether I have wimped out by not leaving and by keeping to weekly sessions – albeit shorter ones.

But hopefully I'll have more clarity after I've seen how the next few sessions go.

On the money front – it's not that I begrudge her her fee. I am paying for her time and also her training and expertise and on-going CPD (and, outside the pandemic, for her Central London location) . I'm not a therapist but I do 1:1 work with people and I charge the same way. But I do want to feel that I'm getting the most value I can. I think our 90-min sessions had just got a bit flabby and we'd got into a habit of being quite chatty with each other for a chunk of time before we actually then got focused and got into the work. So, I'm hoping that, with this renewed focus and shorter session length, I can go back to getting what I need.

But the push-pull around attachment, my challenge with intimacy and vulnerability/feeling exposed and the two conflicting parts I mentioned above aren't going to be resolved by our refocusing, I suspect...
Sounds like a good plan!
 
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