Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Punish Me (please)

Today I barely made it to my session on time. Used to be I would leave my house an hour early and arrive with at least 15, or 20 minutes, to spare. Gave me time to grab a coffee, get my thoughts in order, and calm down from the drive into the city...(insert all sorts of expletives here focused at all the bad drivers that seem to fill up the city I live in).

Anyways, lately I am leaving the house later and later, arriving at my pdoc's with minutes to spare, if that. I do not think this is a coincidence, but I am not %100 sure why I am unconsciously trying to make myself late:

  • Trying to shed my "good girl" image with my pdoc?
  • Rebelling about "having" to go to my appts (obviously it's my choice...but I can see how in many ways the choice is only as free as my feeling that I will survive without the support)
  • Feel like what's the point of going to my appts...It's been 4 years and I'm still depressed
  • Feel like I have nothing left to "entertain" my pdoc with...God it must be so boring to have to listen to me say the same things over and over and over...
  • Maybe I am ready to leave...and just practicing...NOT!
  • (Most likely)...I want to end the therapy before I am abandoned...either emotionally...(boredom, disgust, negative judgment etc.), or physically...(pdoc moves, or something happens to him, or he decides he does not want to see me anymore because I am not trying hard enough)

This fits with my sessions opening comments...I need a therapist who is more punishing, so I feel forced to do things. "What does a punishing therapist look like", pdoc asked me. (all sorts of explicitly sexual images came into my mind immediately...I will tell you why another day)...but I digress...

A punishing therapist lets me know there are consequences for not doing things. "What kinds of consequences?", the unpunitive pdoc asked. I explained, "if I did not do what I was supposed to do, then my appointments would be cancelled, or you would stop seeing me. I get things done when I am afraid of being punished, maybe that would help me here". I was being a bit facetious, but in many ways I feel like I would try harder if I was being "managed". I am simply not accustomed to being so accepted no matter what I do, how I act, what I say, how I feel.

My pdoc says there are many types of parenting styles...The tyrant style...where the parents tyrannical behaviour places their children in a state of constant fear, and guardedness. Effective in the short term because the kids are afraid to do wrong. However, the children will likely rebel and become wild when they leave home. Then there is the opposite style, those parents who set no boundaries, and their kids run wild and get into all sorts of trouble. Then there is a more balanced style where the parents set boundaries, but also allow there kids to grow and explore.

My father was the tyrant...I was terrified of displeasing him...and when I left home I became wilder than wild. As I get older I have become my own tyrant...I use guilt and self recrimination to egg myself on, to try to force myself to do things. What I end up doing is feeling more guilty and more self hatred when I fail to move forward. So I guess I am thankful that every Tuesday and Friday I have a pdoc who attempts to "refather" me from a moderate parenting perspective.

1 comment:

Polar Bear said...

I think it's good too that your pdoc is so sensible. Stick to him... I think he can help.

You see him twice a week? It's good to have that support.