My Therapist and My Heart

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Image result for bing and artworks of a father embracing a daughter

I only post my own words once in a while.  While I post a lot of posts that I admire.  I also comment on many posts, and many times think “Oh, maybe I should have created a new post from that”  after I find that my comment has almost become an essay!  LOL!  I had a sudden realization yesterday that I thought maybe worth sharing.

A couple of months ago, I experienced a rupture in the relationship with my therapist of twenty years.  He had said something that bothered me and from there began ricochets like a pinball machine within me.  After numerous sessions (and the last one where I cried), I finally could feel that he was trustworthy again and felt the love and connection to him.

The pain that I experienced these many weeks was excruciating and nearly unbearable.  My father severely sexually abused me as  a child and teenager.  When this finally came to consciousness in the form of flashbacks in my thirties, it felt like a death.  The father I had loved and adored (when he wasn’t abusing me, we shared a sense of humor and he gave me attention and we shared  playing badmiton and chocolate soda shakes together.)  I lost this place in my heart that provided a feeling of being loved.  A few years ago,  I lost my faith in a loving God, who I thought of as my real father, when after a lifetime of abuse my second husband got a rare disease where he lost the ability to stand and walk and eventually to even sit up unaided. He also became deaf.  This was awful for him and also awful for me. Every month his condition became worse no matter what treatments the doctors gave him since nothing was known really on how to since it was so rare that research was minimal.  After a lifetime of abuse and hardship, the loving god that I had believed in and prayed to since I was a child, seemed to be a hoax.  Though I was very angry , at the same time, for him allowing another hardship of such proportions into my life.  I do not want to challenge anyone’s faith with my confession.  I wish you to keep it since it had given me such comfort, guidance and hope.

So, in a sense, I had lost two fathers.  Over the twenty years, that I had been receiving therapy from my male therapist, he had become among many things, a father-figure to me.  As I came out of the fog of confusion about the safety and trustworthiness that I had hitherto  found in him and could start to feel as I had about him before the misunderstanding, I began to see something in my heart that I had never seen clearly before.  (Please excuse me using the term heart.  I know it is my brain; but, I see emotions as stemming from the term heart.)  The reason that the rift had  been so painful became clear to me.  In my heart was this place where he resided.  All the support and a thousand kindnesses had created a place there where I felt close to him.  Just as a loving parent provides a space like this that supports us as we journey through life, he had created in me this same type of place.  I often leaned into this place for comfort and a feeling of love and safety.  Sometimes, I lay in a fetal position to rest from the difficulties of life and my mental conditions of PTSD, depression and anxiety.  I would get relief there and get up ready to once again struggle to try to live a better way.  That is why the rupture in this relationship was so painful.  I couldn’t find this oh-so necessary place which had nourished me all these years.  And, of course, he, temporarily had ceased creating in me the feeling of he and his office being a safe and nourishing space.  I had experienced the despair and desperate longing of a child suddenly orphaned.  There was nowhere to go to for my need for the good father.

Oh, when I found it again on Monday, I immediately crawled inside this place in my heart and felt all the comfort it supplied; but, I cried also for the time when I couldn’t find it and had despaired.  A bittersweet homecoming.

Art by Edvard Munch

 

8 thoughts on “My Therapist and My Heart

  1. Mark Kent

    very very very well done for talking about sexual abuse .i am so impressed .people never see the every day effects there views/judgements are very Snotty Nosed.i was abused as a child.different adults took turns on me.my story of abuse is in a Authors Book .research is very very rare into abuse . YET IT IS SO EVERY DAY EFFECTING ..i have M.E . because i was abused Sexually .i take part in a lot lot research
    my blog.http;//mark-kent.webs.com
    twitter.supersnopper

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am sorry that you were abused also. It has become so common that it breaks my heart to think of all the people in the past that have been abused and all the children that are now. It should be part of every grade school’s curriculum. If I had been taught that it was wrong and it was right to tell, I would not have suffered so long.
      :

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  2. It can be so difficult to express certain things to even a trusted therapist. Many years ago, I too was unable to speak directly with my therapist about something I imagined he said. My husband. at the time was a malignant narcissist and had nearly driven me over the edge. Memories were coming to the surface but not yet remembered. I had imagined that my therapist had said something that one of my sexual abusers had said to me. I had a great deal of trouble believing that my therapist hadn’t said it, and distrusted him for many, many months. I think it was at least a half a year. Anyway, I understand how difficult and even impossible it is to discuss difficult things with your therapist. I was unable to pursue discussions about what I had thought I had heard him say after my initial and angry accusation against him. Anyway, forgive my ramblings.!

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  3. Thank you for writing about this. I first experienced a terrible rupture with my therapist in July 2016, and I was shocked at how distraught and lost and desperate I felt. It took about four months to repair the rupture, and even then, I couldn’t really talk about it. Each July since then, we have had some kind of rupture, probably because I get it in my head that “oh my god, it’s going to happen again.” Each time it’s been a bit easier to recover, but first it’s been insanely painful. I feel like it’s a problem with me… and of course it is rooted in my own history… but it helps validate my experience to know that others have gone through this, even with trusted therapists they have known for a very long time. I really appreciate this post.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am sorry that you experienced this too. You understand how awful this is. For me, it started with one remark from my therapist that bothered me and then it went from wound to wound inside of me. I have been talking about it to my therapist for many sessions. I didn’t see a way to get back to where we had been before the rupture. Finally, a 5th session showed promise for our future relationship. I hope you can eventually talk about with your therapist. Maybe then you won’t have awful anniversaries.

      Liked by 1 person

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