Today I read a post titled “Sexual feelings for your therapist – and what they can tell you”. I have not been afflicted by such feelings, but the post talked about non-sexual feelings as well and I do have some experience there. Last month when I went to my medication appointment, Brent asked how therapy was going. I said, “Okay” and he asked what okay means. It was like he could hear the unspoken hint of a problem. I hesitated, not wanting what I said to be written in his notes, but he promised not to put it in there so I said that sometimes I still feel like Sadie does too much of the talking and doesn’t force me to do the work. I didn’t want to say this to her, because her response when I bring up issues is to suggest that I might work better with a different therapist, and if she says that to me one more time I’m going to end up crying in front of her.
I don’t want to see another therapist. I could claim that it would be too hard starting over with someone who knows nothing about me, and there would be some truth in it, but the real reason is because I really like her and would miss talking to her. I hate that I had to meet such an awesome person in a context where we can never be friends. She suggests occasionally that we might reduce the frequency of appointments (or, heaven forbid, discontinue them entirely), and I panic every time. I could claim that I think I’m not ready for that, and last time the idea came up this was true, but honestly I could probably see her less now and still be okay. I don’t want to be okay, because being okay means losing someone I care about and I’ve done far too much of that in the past year and a half.
I don’t want to be okay, because I have exactly one relationship where I feel safe, and that’s with Sadie. In all my other relationships, I expect to be judged and to be hurt. I expect that I can’t be honest about my feelings, because people wouldn’t like me if they knew the real me. It seems like I’m open, since I overshare with the loosest of acquaintances, but I share facts of experiences, not the emotions that accompanied them. I am okay with people knowing that I’ve been in the “nut hut”, that I’ve overdosed on Benadryl, that I’ve taken painkillers when I wasn’t in pain. But I’m not okay with telling them that I cried on the bathroom floor in the nut hut, wondering what I ever did to deserve the punishment that is bipolar disorder. I’m not okay with telling them how much it scares me that I lost so many memories of the day of my overdose. I’m not okay with telling them that the painkillers were the only way I survived my mother’s angry outbursts every night when she came home from work.
I want to be able to say that I will someday be ready to not see Sadie weekly, but I will never ever be okay with it. I guess this is where Radical Acceptance comes in.