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Massive backfire in therapy - don't know what to do

Does he not believe the diagnosis? If so he shouldn’t be your therapist. Doesn’t matter how long you’ve invested, kind of hard to get anything out of therapy for a disorder your therapist believes you don’t have.
I don't think so. But like @Movingforward10 says i think it's likely more a matter of semantics around the concept of it being a disorder. The problem is, working with someone who has a closed mindset means he won't be doing training/ reading on dissociative disorders. Which means he won't get my experiences as much as a therapist who does try to understand more specifically about OSDD/DDNOS.

I've been trying to highlight the difference between experiencing dissociation e.g depersonalisation episodes ( like what happened last night) and having a dissociative disorder where I have parts controlling my life (which I have little agency over). The 2 are different. People can have dissociation as part of their trauma reactions but not necessarily have DID or DDNOS.

I struggled to explain why this difference was so important for us to distinguish because I don't think he appreciates what I go through between sessions. I don't feel he gets it.

Not even sure if I'm making sense
 
Ok. He did not go on a rampage (my bad). He was calm during the entire conversation. And he grounded you for the extra 20 minutes. That's good. However, this does not rule out the fact that you felt invalidated. And I think you've a good point. I too would expect my trauma therapist to be open to suggestions for new material, explore it together and draw a conclusion. If you find that material useful it means it is meaningful to you. I wouldn't rule it out. It may point you towards a new direction in finding someone who is better fit for you. Have you researched therapists that specialize in dissociative disorders in your area?
Yes i think you're right. And no i haven't researched yet for other Ts. I can't bring myself to start again. I don't think there are many Ts about with this specialist knowledge around here.
 
So, how ibread this, is him not invalidating your experiences, how you are made up, and what happened, but just not putting a 'disorder' label on it.
Yes over all I do too and I think he's coming from a good place. But I still feel he was invalidating because his aim was to prove this guy being wrong, rather than listen to what in that information was important to me and why.
T:s make mistakes. It's horrible horrible horrible when it happens.
But also, learning to recover from these things is vital. No relationship is perfect. It feels so painful when T's make these mistakes. But, he will learn from it. I'm sure he bitterly regrets the session. And I am sure he will take it to supervision. He was taking responsibility for things in the session and reflecting.
Thank you for reminding me about this. I need to hear it. I'm hurting so much this morning and it all feels hopeless but I know, like you're saying, to let it pass and try to go back.
You have 10 months of him being caring and getting his intervention with you mostly spot on. 1 bad session out of all of that? Is worth working through.
I agree. So hard. Feels impossible. But I do agree.
How many threads have I started with things like this?! Quite a few. And, whilst I still feel the pain of the really big rupture, I understand it now and it helps with other ruptures and with relationships in general.
I'm so grateful for your understanding and input. I know you're coming from a place of deep understanding and you've worked so hard on many similar issues. Thank you for sharing.
I hope you can go to your next session and talk it through.
Maybe say you feel you need an apology. Let him explain himself.
I believe you'll feel much better if you do.
I think I'll have to communicate this. There's so much he doesn't know because I was dissociated and didn't speak. I have to remember he knows less than what everyone does here!
 
Given how distorted (you’re a terrible person) your filter was running in session… how sure are you he was blaming you for breaking trust, rather than..

<facepalm> Nearly a year to build trust, and when she finally does? I can’t do what she wants me to do >.<
Thanks for this @Friday ... you're right that I'll have to comunicate this to him and ask him to clarify. I wasn't dissociated heavily at the point he intimated me bringing what I did was compromising our trust. That's what sent me over the edge. So he may not have intended it that way but there weren't so many different ways to read it. He could have said 'Wow I feel like I may be failing you in the therapeutic process atm - how do you feel about this?' Then I would have reassured him.

I could have said 'I don't expect you to know everything. I want to work through this together. And I think that means we both need to educate ourselves more on something really complicated. But of course I just checked out for 45 mins.
 
I think that with trauma, developmental trauma especially, part of what I'm paying the therapist for is to be the adult in the room. To be capable of modeling reparative and disconfirmatory emotional experiences. To be the person who does NOT drop into disorganization. To be capable of guiding the conversation onto productive paths. And on my part, I commit to trying to be a good and cooperative student, as far as my capacities allow.

If the client "makes a mistake" and brings something into the therapy room that the therapist thinks is inappropriate -- like discussing the benefits of a modality they are not trained for -- then I would expect them to be the trained adult and explain why, in a manner that does not cause the client such distress that they dissociate. Modeling appropriate, attachment-based interpersonal behavior in complex situations and mirroring the emotions being expressed in way that makes the situation manageable is part of what makes therapy valuable for me. I'm not there to learn life skills, because my condition has never really interfered with creating and having what others might deem a "successful" life (I'm old, and not at the beginning of my journey but nearer the end). It's what's going on inside my head that needs sorting, not my external behaviors.

There is no right way to do therapy, my T has said, and I expect him to be sincere about that, and to help me understand, not to criticize me. My inner critic does too good a job of that already.
 
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intimated I'd brought something to therapy which has compromised 10 months of us building trust,
Is it possible he was thinking that YOU don't trust HIM? I can see how someone might, in his position, when confronted with something that sounds a bit like "Why aren't we doing it like this?" might think, "I've spent 10 months working on building a relationship with this person where they trust me. I thought we'd made progress, and now it looks like they don't trust my professional judgement at all!" Not saying that's what he's thinking, just wondering if something along those lines is possible.

I'm going to echo the "T's are human" idea. And, even though it might be nice if they never made any mistakes, it's probably good that they're human. After all, it's mere mortals we have to deal with outside of therapy. I think one of the biggest things I got out of therapy was a chance to learn that things could go totally sideways in a relationship but that didn't mean the world was coming to an end. There were a couple of times it was really hard to go back to the next session (like the time I basically called him a liar.......) but things worked out and I'm glad I went back. If that next session hadn't worked out, things would have been different. It was good to give it a chance.
 
Idk know much about DID, so please forgive me if this is useless.

I think fear feels like unsafety which feels like or becomes mistrust.

Tbh I think there is only so much real communication if it is guarded. Perhaps it is wrong for a T to disagree or act human, or that they ideally should be more diplomatic. Or perhaps he didn't feel confident in his own skills, or thinks that modality isn't sound, Idk? But I do think one can get further with the authenticity than being placated. No one can mind read, even for a T you are a unique person. So if you choose to you can tackle it head on, and if not look elsewhere. It can be a patient's role to feel better, but a T's role to recognize there are times it will feel worse to get there. So what feels awful for the person can be seen as progress for the T.

Idk what modality the other is but relating to it isn't the same as end-result-useful-to-heal? (I mean, by analogy avoidance usually feels better too.)

Best wishes to you.

ETA, I think something @scout86 said is also important, if nothing else you might be able to clear the air, and not carry forward beliefs about them or yourself that are not accurate or were never intended (which is often the case). And if they do seem accurate or were intended, it will be easier to not invest more effort there.
 
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"T's are human"
This. And some (many) are not very good at *that*--I'm not in any way defending this T, just to be clear. I have come to have very little respect for the professionals we think they are. Yes, they have gone through a lot of training, but if they are unable to get the human part right, the training is--in my opinion--useless.
I felt like there was nothing I could have said to get him to hear what i was saying, he wasn't truly open to listening (i felt flustered and embarrassed because his face was saying 'What you're saying doesn't make sense). It was challenging.
I'm sorry you had this experience. We can't, of course, come to any certain conclusion because none of us was there. But, I feel like this a lot when I bring up things that he is not completely familiar with, and I've come to understand that, while he is listening, he may not be willing to change his point of view.

I just don't think some have the ability to stay open-minded and hear with the idea that maybe it might be a good idea to pursue.
Yes. At the beg of therapy he said not to unless it was for admin. That he would have to delete my emails due to GDPR reasons. Which I don't agree with because if I consent to the emails being sent to him, knowing the risks, there's no GDPR issue.
Is he in private therapy or is he part of a group? It could be, if the latter, that it's a policy of the group. I know lots of Ts who don't even provide an email to clients because they want to be very careful about the privacy issue and the law.

I wonder if you could give him something in writing and keep a copy, so he could destroy that after he was done reading it? Or...give it to him in session, and then discuss?
Where as I'm thinking they came out because a protective mechanism kicked in due to how he handled the situation badly. That didn't feel like a healthy 'coming out' of choice.
Actually, all of the Ts I've seen (I'm DID) believed that any time a part comes out is good. No matter what the reason.
Very easy to put the problem on the person receiving therapy and highlight their coping mechanisms whilst ignoring the therapist's part in it.
Yeah, unfortunately, in my personal experience, most Ts (and all medical doctors) do this. And here, we're just trying to brainstorm a bit as to what he might have meant, 'cause we weren't there.
Which means he won't get my experiences as much as a therapist who does try to understand more specifically about OSDD/DDNOS.
I can't remember if you said--does he say this is something he treats? Because some don't, at all.
don't think he appreciates what I go through between sessions.
Oh, I feel like this, too. And it's possible (I'm thinking of this for me, too) that he doesn't, and it's time to move to someone else if at all possible. I also know the reluctance to do so--the ONLY reason I continue to see mine is because I will NOT see another. I'm far along in my process, though, so I have a lot of tools under my belt to get through.
I still feel he was invalidating because his aim was to prove this guy being wrong, rather than listen to what in that information was important to me and why.
Yes...it would feel invalidating to me, too. It did, in fact, when it happened to me. But I just had to accept that he wasn't going to give on it.
I think I'll have to communicate this. There's so much he doesn't know because I was dissociated and didn't speak.
This sounds like a great idea! How he responds may help you see where he is in his thinking and make a decision moving forward.
 
One last thought, more a don't-do-as-I-did-in-my-life thought: I realize I no longer expect an apology, etc, when the average person would, especially with family. Whether it is giving up, mental illness, attachment style, my childhood, not being direct enough, not being forceful enough, not walking away soon enough, having little value, or all or none of those or a combination, I never had a voice that was heard. I tried to speak up, I have expressed needs, I try to give the benefit of the doubt, I try to minimize. I tried to communicate more clearly and effectively, because communication means the meat and potatoes of what you are saying is conveyed and received as you intended. But then I realized, when dealing with other adults, some things don't take a leap to recognize, we know The Golden Rule, we know how we are left when waiting, we know when we have other demands, we know when we say and do things unkind or hurtful. It is not about perfection, but it's not about me pointing the obvious out, either. It is funny because relatively universally people hope to be seen, heard, and understood, and to have a voice. I think SI comes from missing the 1st part (at least in part), and perhaps 'fronting' does too. It becomes second nature and protective.

Reading more it sounds like he owned what he could to the extent he could understand and to the degree he also could share what he was feeling. Kind of sounds like he felt blindsided or disappointed (not in you), but I could be wrong. Perhaps he conversely feels his modality is working well for you.
 
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So it sounds like an attempt at repair is worthwhile and if that fails seek a better therapist once you're in better shape?
Yep I agree 👍

There is no right way to do therapy, my T has said, and I expect him to be sincere about that, and to help me understand, not to criticize me. My inner critic does too good a job of that already.
Thanks @Huxley ... you make some really good points and I agree with them all... I've been working hard on separating everything out. Trying to be objective and set feelings/ interpretations aside. I don't think he was intending to criticise me but the content of what I said I saw value in... and in turn that felt like a criticism on my perspective... as others have said, keeping in mind he's human is really important...I think what he didn't see coming was how his words/gestures and not listening to me properly would impact on me - as he was so intent on his message being stronger than mine.. but I can't expect him to be a mind reader... and now he knows my triggers...

I guess this is a steep learning curve for T too.
 
Is it possible he was thinking that YOU don't trust HIM?
Yes I think you've hit the nail on the head. But I took this as him being in disbelief that we'd/ he'd done all this work and now after this amount of time I don't trust him... by bringing what I did to therapy ... that's the bit that felt like finger pointing...

I'm going to echo the "T's are human" idea. And, even though it might be nice if they never made any mistakes, it's probably good that they're human.
Yep i agree...
things could go totally sideways in a relationship but that didn't mean the world was coming to an end.
this is what I'm learning...I'm feeling more positive tonight so it's easier to see.. Will likely change... but I do see the value of this work...
There were a couple of times it was really hard to go back to the next session (like the time I basically called him a liar.......) but things worked out and I'm glad I went back. If that next session hadn't worked out, things would have been different. It was good to give it a chance.
Happy for you :) ... Great work and (going through it all now), massive well done.. this stuff takes courage...
 
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