My current T hugs, thank goodness. But I have had T's in the past who don't hug. One in particular told me that it's too complicated and can be a slippery slope. Intellectually I agreed with her, but inside I craved a connection with someone and that would include a hug.
My first T sort of hugged. I mean we did hug, but it wasn't consistent, she initiated it, and we never talked about it. I remember struggling with my feelings towards her. I didn't have words for it. I felt so 'not normal'.
Eventually I Googled something like 'therapist hug', that's when I found a lot of information. Most didn't really make me feel better, but I did read that many therapist don't give physical hugs because they would rather have the client feel emotionally held by their words. To me, this felt like b.s.! Instead of coming out and saying they didn't want to go down that path, that potentially slippery slope, they therapize it away.
To me, the actual hug is like the 'nuts' on a hot fudge sundae. The sundae is definitely good, but the nuts add something extra (I'm sure there's something Freudian to the 'nuts' reference, but I leave that for another day...). But my text exchange this weekend has definitely given me something more to think about.
As a little back-story, lately my relationship with my partner M has been less than satisfactory. A lot of it is exacerbated my inability to talk or to express my feelings. So early Saturday morning, I' m up by myself and really worrying......
Me: Can I ask you to 'rescue me' a bit and make sure I talk about M and I next time? Maybe why it's hard to talk about too? Very manicy yesterday and then a bit of a crash when I got home. Thanks
L: happy to help you get perspectives on M and make it the best relationship it can be for you both. You just need to tell me more whats going on in your head. I want to hear. We can work on it and make you feel better by understanding how you can verbalize your feelings and help you with some wording. Just starting will make you feel better.
Me: Thanks, and thanks for being there
I often read and reread the texts messages that L and I exchange. I certainly get something from them. But this one was so different. I swear-to-god that I actually felt emotionally held, a text-hug! And it was awesome!