PART THREE: FRUSTRATION IS A B*ITCH
She made no promises and neither did I. As if this mutual feeling was simultaneously shared by both of us without putting words on it: “We’ll see how far we get”. She knew it, I did too… I was not an easy-going patient and she was not a quitter.
As time passed I was forced to keep my expectations and hopes low. At the beginning of my therapy I thought I’d be done there in six months. But after the third session I figured out there was no shortcut to this. She needed time to analyze the situation, I needed time to open-up. It was a fucked-up period there. For forty-five minutes I went through so many states it tired both my spirit and mind. That chair I sat in was a twisted time machine: for a couple of minutes I was fourteen again, reliving those frightening scenarios of pitch darkness in my teenage years. The next minute I was eight, hiding behind huge trash bins so the others kids don’t spot me. And as she pronounced the magical spell “So… should we continue next week?” I woke up in my twenties again.
All I truly wanted were some proper answers from her in order to start living my new healthy mental life without all those uninvited voices in my mind (after all, what the hell was I paying for ?). But she wouldn’t give them to me. Each time I asked her a direct question, most of the time I got the typical “You know the answer” or “This is something you have to find out by yourself…”
“Well bitch if I’m asking maybe I need a hand in this?!!”
Patience… patience… how was I supposed to be patient while feeling my anxiety taking over day after day? There were a lot of these kinds of sessions. Instead of feeling lighter and better after seeing my therapist, I walked home with heavy feet and tears in my eyes. My mind was unstill, my feelings extremely messed-up.
These were particularly complicated moments: Regretting the choice of going to therapy, I started to self-medicate again. Some old shit restarted: I stopped caring about my nutrition, my rest, my health in general. Chain-smoking through my sleepless nights overthinking about past actions I couldn’t change anymore. Reminiscing about all the missteps. Mine and theirs.
Can we call this a relapse? Yes.
Matter of fact, I stop going there for a couple of months.
Was it wrong?
I’m convinced my therapist saw this coming and that’s why she didn’t harass me with phone calls or emails because she knew that sooner or later I’d find my way back to her.
Fact number two about therapy: Nothing is promised and therapy works under the same philosophy. It’ll hurt to dig out all those hidden memories but without understanding there can be no progress nor acceptance. And these two are the keys to a successful recovery.
Fact number three about therapy: Your therapist is not looking for new ways to mess you up even if it sometimes sounds like it. As hurtful as it might be, you need closure with your background story in order to find your inner peace.
Today I realize that I should have asked her to slow down the rhythm. Of course my stubborn ass insisted in digging deeper convincing myself I could take it. But there were doors I wasn’t ready to unlock. Advice number six: Don’t hesitate to share your emotions concerning the therapy with your psychiatrist. It’s important for them to keep up with your emotional state in order to reshape their method. Therapy is about communication, they are no fortune tellers and no one can guess your thoughts. Manifest yourself when a line gets crossed so both parties stay aware.
As she guessed, I found my way back to the tiny room with the purple coffee table…