Friday, August 26, 2005

Freed Up

Okay, I take back all the negative things I said last time. I was not being abandoned. I was being "freed-up".

I am so proud of myself today. I was brave in my session today and brought up how I left the session in shock...wondering how, when I was brave enough to ask for a change to accommodate my needs, I left feeling like I had been dumped like a hot potato. His response: "I did meet your request to change appointment times very enthusiastically with a response that meant cutting our sessions from twice to once weekly". I was confused and asked him why he was so enthusiastic...explaining I was feeling like I had burdened him too much by remaining depressed for so long and that that was why.

My Pdoc explained he felt that it might be a good idea to shake things up a bit. He thought it was a valid trial, just like a new medication trial, to see how the amount of therapy impacted my mood. He also mentioned that he tends towards being a passive therapist...meaning he tends to sit and listen to the patient vs. taking the lead and making decisions for them. He said he would not change that, and likes that about himself, but he wanted to try a little less passive approach to see how it went.

I have to agree with him on both counts. While I am still really stressed about going from seeing him twice a week to only once a week, I think his decision for us to try therapy one day a week is a sound move. Also, the reason he is a great therapist (and the absolute best I have ever encountered) is that he is an incredible listener (what he labeled as "passive"). He has this innate ability to listen and to allow the patient to make their own decisions. That is not to say he does not step in and help when we need it, or push when we need it, but he understands indecisiveness and amotivation are symptoms of depression and cannot be overcome by making the patient's decision for them. There is nothing worse than a therapist who tells you WHAT to do and WHEN to do it. I need to make my own mistakes, thank you very much.

I asked him if he was honest with me and told me the truth all the time? I wanted to be sure that I could trust him when he tells me I am not overwhelming him with not getting better. I worry I burden him. He said, absolutely he was honest with me, and he believes he would always tell the truth, even if the news is bad, (although, he said he would find a constructive way to bring that up). He said the only time he might not tell me the whole reason behind something is if the reason was a personal reason, or troubles he was having...he said that would be irresponsible of him to use my time, or to impact me because of that.

At the end of the session my pdoc asked me how I felt the session went. I told him I felt really good about being able to bring this up, and that I was glad he was open to the feedback. In fact, the second I saw him in the waiting room, I knew he would be and I knew I could safely discuss all I was feeling. I tend to get overwhelmed by change and I think my thinking was coloured by that. I also think one of the biggest reasons I was feeling so scared was because I feel so safe in his office. I translate that safety into a belief that I need MORE safety (i.e. more appointments).

In fact, when I am extremely depressed sometimes I fantasize about laying on the floor in my Pdoc's office...just being in a safe place, where I can just be, and not worry incessantly like I do in the outside world. My Pdoc made it clear today that we can always review the number of appointments we have together and we can always talk about these sorts of fact he said they are some of the most important conversations to have. I am going to try really hard to make this change a positive one.

1 comment:

Polar Bear said...

Good job, Aqua!

I'm so glad you managed to work through this with your doc. I think it's great that you have such a supportive and understanding therapist.