Dating my therapist

I had my first therapy session the other day.  Ever.  And it was interesting.  I’m not quite sure what I expected, but I definitely learned a couple things.

Apparently I am to lead the conversation.  I suppose I knew this was the case to some extent.  But after awhile I just ran out of stuff to say.  I found myself staring across the coffee table at my therapist several times at a total loss for words.  Like an awkward first date.

Her default icebreaker was to ask me how I was feeling.  To which I replied several times with, “Um…pretty much like what I just said,” or, “Like I don’t know what to say.”

But that’s okay.  Now I know I need to come prepared.  And so I’ve started brainstorming.  What do you think she would have to say if I come to my next appointment with a list of conversation topics?

I also learned that it’s not appropriate to ask your therapist about her life.  At one point I tried to fill the void by asking if she had kids.  To which she replied by asking if I thought she did, how I would feel if I knew she had kids, and how I would I feel if she didn’t.

She never answered the question, and now I’m really curious.  So best not to ask in the first place.

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8 thoughts on “Dating my therapist

  1. It’s so peculiar, sharing that much with another person and not being able to ask about them. It feels almost rude! I’d definitely recommend making notes to yourself throughout the week, as I’d often get home from therapy sessions and think “gargh! I completely forgot to bring up xxx”. Address whatever you can. A hugely freeing thing for me was to learn that certain issues over which I agonised weren’t actually contributing to my mood further than that I felt I should worry about them… If that makes sense. I ended up feeling like I’d set down a huge weight.

    It sounds so odd, but one of the things that I liked about my therapist was that I made her into a representation of the poise and life position that I’d like. I definitely think it helped the process. Maybe I needed an older sister or something? With a previous therapist, I had felt awkward expressing my issues with body image because of the way he looked.

  2. Interesting. Despite my dad actually *being* a psychologist, I’ve never been in a therapy session, so I’ve always wondered what it’s like. I assume it varies depending on your therapist though. We do like to joke that asking, “And how do you feel about that?” is all my dad has to do at work.

    P.S. Now I’m curious about her having kids or not. Does she not have pictures up in her office? I’m pretty sure my dad has pictures of us up (although they may be many, many years old.)

    • That’s funny about you teasing your Dad. There’s probably some truth to that!

      I didn’t think asking about kids would be a problem because the (different) therapist I met for my initial assessment just offered up that she has a kid and even talked about him a little bit. Goes to show they are all different.

      But, yeah, I’m really curious. I’m going to have to look for pictures! Good idea!

  3. That’s really awkward. While a therapist is there to listen to your problems, I think that they should do their fair share of talking and advising rather than just letting there be tons of silence. A list of topics doesn’t sound like a bad idea, and if that doesn’t work maybe a new therapist!

    • Yeah, I guess I thought there would be more advising too. Jason brought up a good point though. I probably have to do more talking in the beginning while she figures out how I’m screwed up. Ha!

  4. Is there still going to be a group therapy session or did I read that wrong? One thing that really helped me was just finding other Moms who were willing to be honest and help me realize that I was not that messed up! And laughing with them about all the craziness! Just being able to laugh and not feel guilty about laughing, because you know I even felt guilty for laughing when I thought I needed to be putting %1000 of my energy and effort into being the perfect Mom who would not totally screw my poor kid up! Good times! Pretty sure she is not totally screwed up, maybe just a tiny bit 😉 !

    • No you read that right. I get both individual and group therapy. I’m actually headed to my first group session in a few minutes.

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