As you may have noticed if you’ve been reading the blog for any length of time, my relationship with Therapist is somewhat complicated. I struggle constantly with how one sided it is, and push far harder than I should to try and even things out – I’m much happier being the one asking questions than doing the talking. Needless to say that hasn’t really worked, and the boundaries are still firmly in place. I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I was in two minds about whether or not to go back to Therapist at the end of this break. It’s been almost five weeks since I’ve seen her, and it’s certainly the longest I’ve gone without any support in years. I’m quietly proud of that, and also relieved that I managed to get through all those weeks without either caving and mailing her in desperation (and having the inevitable guilt and corresponding drop in mood at having done so), or else contacting her back up person in a panic.
But here’s the thing. I’m due back with her tomorrow, and today is the first time I’ve given it any real thought. Do I want to go back? Do I want to risk opening up all that vulnerability and neediness again after working so hard the last few weeks to shut it down? Do I even really need her any more? Am I going back out of habit? Or is it that I don’t want to go back to the reality of life? The last few weeks I’ve been off work, the kids have been out of school, life has been so simple and I know there’s a big part of me that doesn’t want to see an end to that. Tomorrow is back to work, back to school, to routine and to Therapist. In short, back to reality and all that goes with it.
There’s something else as well, something I’ve been slightly more reluctant to think about – I’m angry with her. There’s a part of me that’s really, really pissed that she dared to take five whole weeks off, and expected me to be able to cope, when only a couple of weeks before she left the idea of leaving as much a two week gap between appointments wasn’t even up for discussion. And, for sure, that is partly what’s fuelling my thinking about not going back. I realise that’s a completely irrational reason, it’s nothing more than cutting off my nose to spite my face. Logically, I understand her need to take a break, we all do. But emotionally? Emotionally I feel abandoned, let down and rejected. Hello borderline. Nice to see you again.
I spoke about it with Hubby earlier, and he had two main concerns – firstly, if I don’t go back, I will essentially have gone cold turkey on what has been a massive support for me for a long time. Apart from anything else, it’s not therapeutically sound to end a counselling relationship without warning and without working up to it. His second concern was whether or not my reasons actually make sense – the very fact that I’m angry with her is probably an indicator that there’s a bit more work to be done. I’ve long struggled with the fact of needing support, so I guess the thoughts of realising that I still do is a little off putting as well.
So, I’ll go tomorrow. I have my reservations, lots of them. But maybe I’ll surprise myself. Maybe the break has been enough to show me I can manage without her, that I don’t need her as much as I used to. There’s only one way to find out.