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Email fallout with T - need advice please

just showing up, with no agenda, no pre planning, no going over how the conversation needs to go over and over in your head. Just relax about it, and go in & feel your way through it and let it happen naturally as it comes up between you.
Yes, totally - tho reading it summed up like this made me laugh cos... yeah, PTSD right? If I was seeing my T to talk about a rupture like @beaneeboo is, I'd be doing all the anxiety/pre-planning stuff too... As a form of hypervigilance, trying to "control" the outcome (cos control is better than trust), trying to mind-read, convinced that - like in childhood - I'm the only person in the room who is up to doing the heavy lifting and no one's gonna help me with that ever, that T will judge me instead of T wanting to resolve this rupture with me mutually, etc, etc...

So, to be fair, I think the things we're suggesting are like... uh... what a person without PTSD would do...? 😉😆
 
Yes, totally - tho reading it summed up like this made me laugh cos... yeah, PTSD right? If I was seeing my T to talk about a rupture like @beaneeboo is, I'd be doing all the anxiety/pre-planning stuff too... As a form of hypervigilance, trying to "control" the outcome (cos control is better than trust), trying to mind-read, convinced that - like in childhood - I'm the only person in the room who is up to doing the heavy lifting and no one's gonna help me with that ever, that T will judge me instead of T wanting to resolve this rupture with me mutually, etc, etc...

So, to be fair, I think the things we're suggesting are like... uh... what a person without PTSD would do...? 😉😆
🤣🤣 yup. We’ve definitely all been there and done exactly that!
 
Thank you @Movingforward10 @Friday @Ecdysis @scout86 @No More

Maybe saying all this too him? You don’t need to have all the answers about how to have the conversation. He can guide that conversation and ask you in the moment what feels the most important to say And explore first.
I always forget that just saying what's on my mind, including 'I don't know how to go about this' is valid ... thank you for the reminder!
 
Is the agenda important?

(It may be, honest question.)

Because, if not? It’s ALSO perfectly okay to go in with no expectations, no agenda, and simply let things unfold naturally.
I think I'm unsure. Because I don't feel I know myself. I feel there is an absolute truth about the way it should be tackled but I don't know it and so I'm not sure if I'm doing it right. Thinking about it, I guess I'm expecting him to know and me not to because I don't know my own feelings around it. Or more specifically, I don't trust them. And this gets down to being right or wrong. Because when I wasgrowing up my feelings were never correct. And my perspective was always wrong.

So… my personal baseline… is how important is the agenda?
So cutting the BS out, if I really stand back and think about it, it is important that we address the email issue. I would like to apologise if the way I wrote things gave room to make him feel I had bad intentions. My intentions weren't bad. I was thrown by what appeared to be a misaligned understanding about the T&Cs and I was upset by his harsh response as well as his mind reading. I hope that's OK to say.
 
You've made so many hopeful points... which I'm going to read to remind me tomorrow...
. Remember, he does this stuff for a living and chances are really good he's been in similar situations before.
I totally haven't considered this. But you're right. This is what he's trained to handle. And he has handled our last fall out really well too...
There's a real good chance he's given thought to how to handle things too. You probably won't have to sort this out all by yourself.
That's what I've been feeling. That it's all on me. I think because of him saying to go to his professional body to address it.. but I need to give the benefit of the doubt...
I felt kind of the same way the session after I accused my T of lying to me. (Long story. A pretty big blow up. I don't think he was actually lying, he was just wrong......) Anyway, it was a big blow up and I was really dreading what was going to happen next. He always met me in the lobby & we walked back to his office together. As we were walking down the hallway, he asked how "we" were today. (Not something he would normally have said.) I asked if there WAS a "we". He smiled and said that, as far as he was concerned there was. Things moved on from there. It was fine. I think there's an excellent chance you're going to have a similar experience. (My fingers are officially crossed1)
Thanks for sharing this...I can see you have experience of a similar dynamic!! I'm glad it ended well for you... and hope that it still is?! I hope that rupture and then repair is something that enabled you in other areas of your life? (Me wondering is all this stress worth it lols😆)
 
I'd say that in a healthy conversation about solving a problem, both you and the other person should be doing 50% of the heavy lifting.
Ok, this does take a bit of mental weight off
So how about letting T do his half of the heavy lifting and not "pre-planning" all of that? Allow the course of the conversation and the place the two of you end up unfold.
Ooooh, so this is difficult for me... but you are of course right...I know I need to do it... I think it comes from being younger when I didn't stand a chance against my dad and his partner and their guilt trips and out right blame for how selfish i was and how much stress i caused them (oh the irony)... there was nothing i could say to defend myself, that would be heard... I think nowadays I feel if I have my planned verbal defense organised at the ready i may stand a chance, but I guess I have to realise, that's my old dynamic, not T's and so it may not be needed...

I guess you're saying to trust the process? 😳
Plus, while T wasn't doing well initially with this topic, he seems to have "caught up" now (maybe he did some supervision on it... you know that thing were T's talk to a T who's their mentor about challenging dynamics in therapy...) so maybe you can even trust him to do 75% of the heavy lifting, given that's the nature of his job...?
I do feel this may have happened.. he has swung back and forth... I think I'm gonna go with 50 / 50 unless of course I have a terrible time with dissociation in which case that will go to sh*t ...
You showing up, wanting to work, willing to compromise, willing to both speak up and listen, willing to problem-solve... that should be "plenty" in terms of achieving some kind of useful result...?
This is so valuable to be reminded of. 🙏
And maybe don't pressure yourself that it all has to be resolved within a 50 minute session? Maybe just do "whatever fits well" into 50 minutes and save the rest for next time?
Ok
I think we've moved on from the thing of you feeling like it's annoying to be paying for 50 minutes of "discussing an email misunderstanding"... I think we're now at a place where you're doing valuable work on conflict management, on speaking up and making yourself heard, on how to deal with misunderstandings, on trust, on repairs of relationship rutptures, etc, etc, etc... So well worth investing more than "just" one session, if that's how it unfolds.
Good way to look at it.

Part of me is conflicted. I don't want everything that happened to fall down to me being the *cked up one and the reason why everything went downhill...I do feel the way he handled parts of it wasn't great and would like him to recognise that, but I also need to remember that this whole thing has made me ill and knocked me off my perch completely.. which isn't normal for someone who doesn't have relational difficulties and they need addressing...
And you being nervous is "good" - it means that you care about the outcome - it means that this T and the therapeutic relationship are valuable to you and therefore it means you're going to invest effort into resolving this well.
Thanks for your support 🙏
 
I’m in agreement with Friday, Scout & Ecdysis 😊

They’ve said it all a lot better than I ever could, but can you try just showing up, with no agenda, no pre planning, no going over how the conversation needs to go over and over in your head. Just relax about it, and go in & feel your way through it and let it happen naturally as it comes up between you.
Yeah, gonna try, but not convinced it's gonna go that way lols 😳.. gonna try to do the least amount possible...!!!
 
Yes, totally - tho reading it summed up like this made me laugh cos... yeah, PTSD right? If I was seeing my T to talk about a rupture like @beaneeboo is, I'd be doing all the anxiety/pre-planning stuff too... As a form of hypervigilance, trying to "control" the outcome (cos control is better than trust), trying to mind-read, convinced that - like in childhood - I'm the only person in the room who is up to doing the heavy lifting and no one's gonna help me with that ever, that T will judge me instead of T wanting to resolve this rupture with me mutually, etc, etc...
Uuuggghhh! You've summed it UP totally 100%
 
I do feel this may have happened.. he has swung back and forth... I think I'm gonna go with 50 / 50 unless of course I have a terrible time with dissociation in which case that will go to sh*t ...
I think it is also okay to tell him that you want to have this convo but you are also very concerned about dissociating and then losing your voice and ability to have the conversation the rest of you needs (and wants) to have with him.

I find that when I’m afraid to have a convo (especially with T), communicating my fears and triggers (and reasons why I’m afraid) is usually a really useful place to start. In fact, the more I’ve communicated all that goes on in my head (e.g., what I’m afraid she is thinking and feeling but also how I argue with the parts of me who have those fears because they make no sense in the context of what I know about my T), the better the conversations have gone.

You really are doing a great job navigating this. 💜
 
I think it is also okay to tell him that you want to have this convo but you are also very concerned about dissociating and then losing your voice and ability to have the conversation the rest of you needs (and wants) to have with him.
I did let him know in a previous email that was a concern ... so he has some awareness ..I guess we'll just have to see what happens... I've been so up and down i feel it really does depend on the day/ the moment ...
I find that when I’m afraid to have a convo (especially with T), communicating my fears and triggers (and reasons why I’m afraid) is usually a really useful place to start. In fact, the more I’ve communicated all that goes on in my head (e.g., what I’m afraid she is thinking and feeling but also how I argue with the parts of me who have those fears because they make no sense in the context of what I know about my T), the better the conversations have gone.
Thanks for sharing this... one part of me knows this is what needs to happen .. and that's what will help me progress... anther is so afraid of being gas lit as that's my normal expectation, what I'm used to... but. That's what I'll need to tell T ... and essentially it's down to trust... if he can tell me what he thinks even if it's in disagreement, as long as he can do that in a compassionate way, not angry or blaming, I think I'll be able to work with that....
You really are doing a great job navigating this. 💜
Thanks for your continual encouragement @ninja ...
 
'm glad it ended well for you... and hope that it still is?! I hope that rupture and then repair is something that enabled you in other areas of your life?
My T retired nearly 2 years ago. We still email now & then and I consider him to be a friend and guess he must think the same since he's the one who suggested staying in touch. I learned a lot over the course of our work together but this one incident might have been the most important for me. What's "important" is going to depend on what you need to learn, right? I needed to learn that being messy doesn't mean a relationship is "bad". (Among other things.) I've known a few people in my life where it seemed like we were on the same wavelength and it was easy to relate and then fairly easy to trust them, at least to a point. My T WASN'T one of those people. He's smart and thoughtful and pretty interesting, but we often approach things completely different. That took some getting used to but it was very valuable. Partly because it was good not to see that difference as "dangerous" and partly because seeing things differently is a great way to learn. I hope your session goes as well as mine did! (Don't shoot for "perfect". I'm really not sure there IS a such thing.)
 
My T retired nearly 2 years ago. We still email now & then and I consider him to be a friend and guess he must think the same since he's the one who suggested staying in touch.
that's great.. he must really respect you!
I learned a lot over the course of our work together but this one incident might have been the most important for me.
that's interesting... I think a few people have had similar experiences and feel like you, given all the amazing advice on this thread... it's definitely helped me to see it's more than just a current dispute and has potential for learning and change...
What's "important" is going to depend on what you need to learn, right?
I think I may need to reflect on this. I might do it in my diary here. I do need to know what's been difficult and why. Some of it I've already felt I've understood but there's more.
I needed to learn that being messy doesn't mean a relationship is "bad". (Among other things.)
Ok... sounds like you did some valuable work...kudos...
I've known a few people in my life where it seemed like we were on the same wavelength and it was easy to relate and then fairly easy to trust them, at least to a point. My T WASN'T one of those people. He's smart and thoughtful and pretty interesting, but we often approach things completely different. That took some getting used to but it was very valuable. Partly because it was good not to see that difference as "dangerous"
Yep I hear ya
and partly because seeing things differently is a great way to learn.
This x 1000... I do i know i need to stop being cyclical in my thinking and feeling of I'm going to step off this trauma merry go round
I hope your session goes as well as mine did! (Don't shoot for "perfect". I'm really not sure there IS a such thing.)
Thanks.. I'll up date at some point.... it's tonight... currently feeling as ok as I can be i think...
 
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