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    splitandtrying2bme
    Participant

    Hi Everyone!

    A big part of what many of us are dealing with throughout our journeys is therapy. Our relationship with our therapist is a crucial aspect of our work and progress.

    we are lucky if we click right away with the therapist and from there begin together. However, many times that is not the case. Sometimes we are confused and not sure if the therapist is right for us, as lots of times we are told that it takes time to build up a relationship.

    Right now I’m in a very confused situation and maybe your insights and discussions can shed some light. My therapist seems like a good therapist. She is a tough type of therapist, which I like in a way because I feel she is strong. However, I find myself very frustrated with her a lot. I feel she misses my point lots of the time, and tries to teach me vs. let me know she gets it, and try to help me through it. Our communication isn’t going well and I dont know what to do anymore. She seems to give me the feeling that I am the issue here and that anything she does I get upset about. As someone with lots of self doubt to begin with, I’m extremely confused now if I’m being unrealistic about what I want from her, and if I’m the issue here like she seems to be conveying, or if she is just not a good fit for me, and perhaps I need someone different, maybe more validating, understanding and sensitive.

    I would love to hear what you all have to say. Maybe you have ideas on how to know if she is not right for me, or if I’m being the issue here.

    what do you have to say here?

    Hello Split,

    You are asking a very difficult and complex question. It sounds like you really want to make the therapy work and you want to do what is “right”. However, while there are some ideas that may be helpful the bottom line is you need to feel comfortable in the therapy. That being said, before you find yourself another therapist, I would suggest you share openly with your therapist. You may have done this already, but if not, it is valuable and worthwhile to devote a full session (at least) to this. If you are able to have that conversation, I would suggest keeping this topic alive throughout other sessions. If after all that, you are still uncomfortable with the therapy for whatever reason, it is perfectly ok to find another therapist.

    Some questions that you can ask yourself that may help you address the issue as well:

    1) Is this your first therapist or have you had other therapist that you have left in the past?

    2) Are there other relationships in your life that you feel need more compassion and therefore are not able to engage in the relationship?

    3) When relationships are uncomfortable for you, what have you done in the past to resolve the situation?

    I hope this is helpful to you and you are able to find the right balance and dynamic in your therapeutic relationship.

    Chaya Rochel

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    avacad0
    Participant

    As someone who also struggles with lots of self doubt I can associate with your confusion. I agree with Chaya Rochel. Openness is the way to go. Just bring it up with your therapist. That experience alone can help you in future relationships. By being open you are practicing a way to communicate in a healthy fashion with others. I would recommend bringing it up and then if you still need clarity try bringing it up a second time until you become clearer whether she is the right therapist for you.

    @split; fantastic question and well-though out – it does not seem like you just want to rid yourself of your therapist but want to fuse a connection where you feel like you are heard and can grow.

    Chaya had some great pointers – trying to discuss it directly w/ therapist can most likely be very helpful.

    Have you had similar experiences in the past with other people in your life who could’ve been in a position to help you but you feel didn’t understand them?

     

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    splitandtrying2bme
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    Topic Author

    First of all I just want to say that this is my first time sharing like this, and I am so relieved and grateful to have all this response and support. Its a savior. Its amazing what it can do. It shrinks my hopelessness by so much. Thank you everyone. Ahh its nice to be understood:)

    secondly, what if I brought up the issue already, and she didn’t have much to say. After a really rough and unhelpful phone call (I was away) I wrote to her a little about how I’m feeling, and she even wrote that she doesn’t have much to say. Perhaps she isn’t so sensitive to my needs and how I feel?

    The thing about being open with her- it’s really hard for me. And so I am, and at the same time when we get into a very real conversation about this- I feel extreme shame and sometimes I shut down and go blank and feel I cant share. And then she might understand it as not having a point or not even knowing myself what I want from her. I want to be able to just tell her straight out what I feel I want/ need, tho I will have doubt and shame that I’m not normal for saying it, and i wont be able to. And then she will say- listen I am here to hear what you have to say, but then you dont even tell me what you want from me.                              Its so difficult and frustrating when this happens. I feel frozen. And cant say anything. Because I have so much bubbling inside but I cant get it out. Because by then I just feel crazy and ashamed of myself. Is this understandable? (Or maybe I am crazy??)

    Meanwhile she understands that we need to try and talk things through, because I sent her a pretty honest email about all this. I hope there is hope here. Changing therapists again is exhausting.

    Thank you all.

     

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    splitandtrying2bme
    Participant
    Topic Author

    In response to Yehuda (Hudi) Kowalsky's post #6942:

    to answer your question and Chaya Rochel’s – My relationships in my life do have this dynamic where I’m not fully open with them because I’m afraid if they will get me, or not. And if they’ll judge me and if they will be sensitive to my struggle. So I know this is something I gotta work through in whatever therapy I’m in. The thing is- is that this is a new therapist, I’v met her about 3 months ago. With My old therapist we had to work through this barrier and we did, it took a long while, but she was sensitive, and trying to make it a safe place to work together. It worked. She was amazing. Again, it did take a good year to build trust with her, (because my big thing is trust) but she was great. (My parents will not allow me to see her anymore as they think she was not helping me, partially because it took so long and they didn’t see much results. The results were internal for me on such a deeper level, and I wasnt ready to share it with them then. Anyhow there is a bigger picture.) but bottom line is, I’m missing the person who I built my first real trusting relationship and I’m having difficulty knowing whether this new therapist is someone worth investing all this effort in trusting to a large degree. She doesn’t seem so. But I dont know forsure.

    hope I didn’t write too long here. Thank you all!

    Hi Split,

    This is a good question, and the fact that you’re asking it shows that you’re willing to put in the work that is needed to build a trusting therapeutic relationship. Sometimes it takes a lot of time and effort to get to a place where you feel like you can really trust your therapist and that your therapist understands you. (It seems like from what you’re saying that you have experience with this and you understand this point.) That being said, however, like you’re questioning, it’s sometimes just not a good fit. It can be very frustrating for both the client and the therapist when this is the case. It doesn’t mean that she’s not a good therapist or that there’s something wrong with you necessarily. It means that it’s not a good dynamic, it’s not a place where you’ll feel safe to open up.

    I would say that you should weigh the pros and cons. Is there enough about your experience with this therapist that suggests that you should continue? What are you gaining? What work do you need to do to break through this feeling you’re having about your therapy with her? Do you think that she can help you do it? If you feel like you’ve given her a fair shot and you don’t see very much progress, maybe it’s time to find a new therapist. Maybe you need someone with a different style.

     

    Good luck!

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    splitandtrying2bme
    Participant
    Topic Author

    Thanks all your responses are really helpful and validating.

    In response to Rivka (Rochkind) Janowski's post #6954:

    I dont feel safe to open up. Maybe I do need to just find someone else. Surprisingly I’m feeling lighter when thinking of working with someone who gets me better and who will have a different style. Although it takes up so much energy to start with someone new. My situation is complex and it takes me a long time fo feel out the therapist, and begin talking.. let alone work on what needs to be worked. Cuz first they need to hear the picture. And I have a really hard time with talking and sharing.:(

    Also the one thing I like about this therapist- is that she is sort of tough and strong! I hope I can find someone else who is also the strong type.

    I feel so much better, once being able to share here!! Its amazing! Thank u all again!!!

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    Chavy
    Participant

    In response to splitandtrying2bme's post #6957:

    Hi,

    I wanted to check in and see how things are going since a few weeks ago.  Is your relationship with your therapist getting better?

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    splitandtrying2bme
    Participant
    Topic Author

    In response to Chavy's post #7103:

    Chavy you are so nice for caring and checking in. I was touched to see your message, so thanks. It goes a long way. Now about my therapy- you have no idea!! I’m writing this to u all, who helped me thru your ideas, advice, and discussion to get to my own clarity about this therapist. I decided to leave her and give something else a shot. BH H’ sent me a name of a new possible therapist thru a previous teacher of mine, and im already clicking with her. Now that im seeing someone new – I’m seeing more and more how much the old therapist was really no good for me. I appreciate the safety this therapist creates, especially because of how much I couldn’t open up in my last therapy. Its shocking for me that i feel so much more comfortable now to talk and share..im so grateful I’m out of the therapy that I was confused about and stuck in. And grateful to be seeing someone who understands my need for safety, and who welcomes talk related to previous therapy- like the hardships in this last therapy experience, and like the struggle with missing my old old therapist my parents do not allow me to see. Its nice she welcomes what I have a need to talk about..and doesn’t give off a vibe of pressure to move on and past things I’m not ready yet to move on with, like my old therapist would.

    anyway thanks everyone!! You really helped me!!

    I’m so happy I listened to my inner self and switched.

    love,

    ME

    Wow! I just had a moment and read your post and wanted to share how heartwarming and nice it is to hear positive feedback. It is so important to connect with your therapist and while there is lots of therapeutic protocol, a feeling of trust and security trumps all of that. Glad you have someone with whom you feel comfortable.

    Chaya

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    splitandtrying2bme
    Participant
    Topic Author

    In response to chayasatt's post #7118:

    ?

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    Chavy
    Participant

    In response to splitandtrying2bme's post #7116:

    Of course! My pleasure 🙂

    I’m so happy that you found a therapist that you feel good about. May she be able to further guide you to true inner happiness and health!

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    strong
    Participant

    I am so happy you were able to realize that it wasn’t your problem but your therapists for making it hard for you. The only way to move past the shame of opening up is continuing to open up and share with the people who you know wont reject you. Your therapist was openly rejecting you so obviously you had a hard time sharing. By leaving her and finding a new one who accepts you for who you are, you did the biggest favor for yourself.

    Good Luck!

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    splitandtrying2bme
    Participant
    Topic Author

    . The only way to move past the shame of opening up is continuing to open up and share with the people who you know wont reject you.

    Hey strong! This line is so so so true. And it can take time to realize this…and it can be so scary too..but nice to know that there is someone else out there knowing this experience..thanks

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