Tuesday, February 28, 2012

I would never consider myself to be a 'talker', and I'm pretty sure people who know me would agree.  And although it may appear that I talk about a lot of things with L, honestly she spends more time talking than I do.  She does an excellent job pulling things from me and I know I wouldn't have gotten this far if she was a blank-slate, or waited for me to take the lead.

The texting has helped me tremendously as well.  Don't get me wrong, texting has led to some missteps and misunderstandings, but I think the good as outweighed the bad, at least for me. 

I know it's hard for her sometimes, trying to maintain a balance of giving me my own space and allowing me to take my time, versus pushing me  to talk.  It's not always perfect, but like I said, I don't think I would have gotten this far if her approach was different.  And today was a good example of that. 

Because I'm not quite sure yet if I'm going to die of embarrassment or not over what we talked about, I'm not going to go in to much detail.  But suffice to say that I was able to share my 'authentic' thoughts that I wrote about in my last post. 

It took a while, I certainly didn't come up with guns-a-blazing, and she was actually ticking me off a bit at first. 

You see we had couples counseling, M and I, yesterday, and it was horrible.  She, meanin L, pushed and I retreated.  I think I said all of 10 sentences, and most of them were 'I don't know'.  However, what I saw and experienced yesterday was M's reaction to my retreating, and it wasn't pretty, I was such a jerk.  It took me until we were driving home that I was able to tell M what was going on for me. 

Once again, I'm not going in to much detail, but as I am an Irish-Catholic-Lesbian I am the epitome of guilt.  I even have guilt over the guilt!  Lucky for me I'm also a wise-ass, sarcastic bi-atch, so I can usually hide my guilt/shame very well, and that's what happened yesterday.  I feel such shame and embarrassment over some things that I either retreat or lash-out, and in some cases I do both.  This weekend I did both!

But, on an 'up' note, I as able to talk about some of it with M.  We still have a long ways to go with this, but at least it's out there.  It sort of now feels a little like we're on the same side instead of resenting or working against each other.  All good stuff.  Hard, but good. 

So when I got to L's today for my session she didn't know what had transpired after we left her office.  She didn't know that I was able to tell M some of what was going through my head.  So once again she started pushing again, and I started retreating a little bit.  I was also using the retreating as a 'reason' not to tell her what the source of my discomfort/shame/embarrassment was.  But she backed off a bit (a LITTLE bit) and after a couple of false starts I knew I wanted to get this out on the table, so I started with the blogging around 'being authentic', and some thoughts I had, and how it impacted my weekend with M, and what 'demons' we(I) still have to uncover. 

I know if I were L I'd be thinking what a great session we had, and how far I've come.  I'm 46 years old, I have been in therapy off-and-on for probably 15 years, and there are so many topics that I've never discussed.  But today I can check off one of them.  But I'm not L, and part of me is a little bit afraid of having been so open today.  But I'd also be lying if said I didn't feel better, cause I think I do.  At least for today, for right now.........there's always tomorrow!


  1. ah, being authentic again - it's tough stuff! talking about things that are new and/or uncomfortable takes great courage and you continuously push past the uncomfortable to say what you know you need to. good for you, for that. you are making progress in huge ways - and when you look back some time from now, you'll recognize it. you're doing great!

  2. It takes courage to be authentic. To work through all the feelings that come with being authentic. As hard as it is I'm glad you feel better for it. And you are definitely working hard! There are some things I've never talked about to a therapist either but I plan on changing some of that with the next therapist.

  3. Good for you! That is a huge step.

    Interesting to me is that you put so much emphasis on what the therapist thinks of you, that relationship. Don't get me wrong, it is clearly a very important relationship, to be sure.

    But I wonder if in a sense you place a lot more emphasis on the therapist as a way to take the fear off of your truly intimate relationships, such as with M.

    I may be off the mark, but it seems that in a way placing so much emotion on L is much safer then it is when you place it on M or someone else who is closer in your life. This would also explain why in your heart of hearts you don't really feel comfortable when your therapist gets closer than they "should" or steps over the line with boundaries...

    Because in reality, perhaps you know that you don't really and truly want more then what the standard patient/therapist relationship entails. However, by putting so much thought and emphasis on the fantasy of it, you avoid your genuine fears around the people closer to you in life.

    Let's face it. In the scheme of things, what L thinks of your innermost thoughts and feelings is not even 1 tenth of 1 percent as important as what your wife/life partner thinks.

    And I feel that perhaps your willingness to start being honest and authentic is a start at truly recognizing and coming to terms with that reality.

    BTW sorry for spewing so much stuff, I realize I don't know you at all and could be way off base here. There are merely "thoughts." Apologize if anything offends.

  4. Thanks Manda, your encouragement (and your damn 'authentic-stuff') means alot!

    Thanks JBR, for always listening, it helps.

    Lostinamaze, I'm sure if you set your mind to it, you can talk about anything you need too. Good luck.

    And Gniz, thanks for your thoughtful reply too! And you're right about alot of your observations. And I think I'm taking the work that I've done with L and using them in my relationship with M. But I gotta tell you, none of this is easy, or clear cut. There's so much that overlaps with L and M, but they are both important relationships to me.