I committed to two sessions a week for two months this summer and it has had a profound impact on my relationship with Anna. I trust her more, I feel less self conscious and more accepted by her. I trust that she actually does care about me and wants to help me. I can feel her reaching out to me and I’m able to accept her care. I’m less defensive with her and I’m more willing to ask for what I need. It feels like we are on the same team and that she wants the best for me. All of this is new to me and feels incredible.
In our session on Tuesday, when we were sitting next to each other on the floor, my eyes scanned down from Anna’s face to her arms. She had both hands clasped around one knee and I noticed a small cluster of self harm scars high up on her arm. I looked away and didn’t mention it. I don’t know if she noticed. I felt an overwhelming sense of connectedness with her. A sense of compassion for the hurt she must have felt, the pain she tried to cut out of her at some point in her life. A respect for her resilience and self healing, how she turned her personal struggles into a way of helping others find their healing. It struck me that all the times I thought she might be judging me, she was actually understanding me on a deeply personal level. The strength and self knowing she has that enables her to not allow her stuff to interfere with my therapy. I felt so much love and respect for her.
I know that Anna is a very self aware therapist, I can guarantee she has reflected on this by herself if not in her own therapy or supervision, – what she will do if a client sees/mentions her scars. I know she will have carefully thought out the decision to have them be visible with me. That also makes me feel closer to her. I know that if I brought it up with her, she’d know what to say.
She asked me once if I wanted to show her my scars and I said no. Seeing hers has made me feel more comfortable with showing her mine. Not to ‘compare’ but rather because I always wanted to show her my scars so that they are witnessed and acknowledged/validated and the only thing stopping me in the past was thinking she’d never understand.
Thinking about my response to seeing her scars has made me realise that if I can have compassion for her, then perhaps I can have compassion for myself. It is sad that I’ve experienced things in my life that I couldn’t process in an emotionally appropriate way. That self harm was my ‘go to’ coping strategy. But knowing what I experienced, the self harm makes perfect sense. Rather than seeing Anna as a pathetic person who has no resilience and who made a stupid attention seeking mistake, I feel quite the opposite. I can see her strength and resilience. I can see how she tried to cope. I can see how the self harm kept her alive, for that I’m grateful. I can see that she turned her pain into something healing. Something that is now helping others. I can see that she worked hard to get to where she is and she probably sees something like that in me. That’s an enormous realisation.
Anna is going on holiday next week. I’m seeing her on Saturday then I won’t see her again for nearly two weeks. We have contracted to talk about how I feel about the break on Saturday and I plan to be honest with her. I now understand that I can share how I feel regardless of whether she can meet my needs or not. I can tell Anna I want her to stay and she won’t get angry with me. She’ll listen and validate how I feel. I can tell her I want to continue seeing her twice a week (but sadly have to go back to once a week because I can’t afford it long term)… without her being able to fix this for me. Just sharing how I feel will be healing. I’m not as scared about talking honestly with her as I used to be. This is a massive change that I want to acknowledge. I’ve had to crawl through some very painful hot coals to get to this point and I’m so glad I have.
After talking a bit about changing from two sessions a week to one, we settled in to a continuation of the last session. Anna reflected that she thought I had found it quite powerful just to be able to say what I said and have her not overreact. She said that because of how I was treated growing up, my child part would be expecting her to humiliate me or tell me off. Instead, her reaction was normalising. I agreed with her and we spoke a little about the way my mum spoke to me about sex and how damaging that was. That she always made everything about her. That she had no filter and would tell me and ask me anything and everything.
I said, ‘the session was pretty intense!’ she looked inquisitively at me. I said, ‘I’ve obviously never talked about this stuff before and the way you were with me was amazing, it felt like you came over into my circle, you looked at it all from my perspective. It didn’t feel like me opposite you, it felt like you were in it with me. it was really connecting. I like how you have adapted how you work with me, how you didn’t ask loads of questions coz you’ve learned that doesn’t really work with me…’ I looked at her and she smiled knowingly. I said, ‘you know it was kind of like a second chance… not consciously but I tried to talk about this like over a year ago and…’ Anna said, ‘it was too soon then,’ I nodded and said, ‘but you were very gentle and careful this time, and it felt good.’ She said she was glad and thanked me for telling her.
Anna asked if I wanted to explore anything specific from the session and I told her that I spoke to Adam a bit about not liking when he puts his hand on my head when I’m going down on him. She said, ‘wow, well done! What did he say?’ I said, ‘well we were in bed and he’d started to do it again and I moved his hand and said, ‘don’t do that’ in a lighthearted way. He then said, ‘aw but I love it,’ raising his eyebrow, I’d smiled and said, ‘yeah but I wanna have control!’ and that was it… he was fine with it and I got what I needed out of it. Anna was really pleased and talked a bit more about how we don’t have to share everything with our partners. She started talking about the language we can use when discussing these things. That we can say, ‘this doesn’t feel safe to me,’ or ‘speaking about the reasons why I don’t like this doesn’t feel safe, but I know you love me and I love you, it isn’t anything you’ve done wrong it’s just important that this boundary is listened to.’
She then said, ‘and have you talked to him about why you don’t like it when he puts his hand on your head? Because that seemed like an important part of the reason why you were triggered.’ I said I hadn’t told him. She said ‘do you know why you don’t want to tell him?… you don’t have to tell me.’ I said, ‘yes.’ She said, ‘right’ as if she was expecting that to be all I would say. I went on to say, ‘I feel like I lied to him all these years.’ She said, ‘because you’ve been triggered so many times over the years and haven’t told him?’ I said, ‘no, because I never told him what happened to me,’ she said, ‘that’s not lying though, that’s just not telling something, we don’t have to share everything with our partners. I said, ‘but when we first started going out we talked quite a lot about our experiences and past relationships and me and Adam both had never had a serious relationship before… so…’ Anna said, ‘I think the key word there is relationship though Lucy… what happened to you wasn’t within a relationship was it?’ I shook my head. She said, ‘when we start seeing someone we don’t talk about everything that’s ever happened to us…’ I said, ‘I just think if he knew I’d kept it from him all this time he’d be so angry with me and want to leave me.’ Anna started to explore that idea with me and I interrupted her and said, ‘I know that’s bullshit, I know, I can hear myself, I can hear it in my head, I know exactly what I would say if it was a friend I was talking to!’ Anna smiled and said, ‘what would you say?’ I said, ‘of course he wouldn’t leave you, he loves you, how could he be angry about something like that, this is just a tiny blip in the great scheme of all that you and Adam have together, you love each other and your whole lives are entwined around each other, this tiny thing can’t threaten that.’ I looked at Anna and she was smiling widely. She said, ‘and do you believe that?’ I felt kind of emotional and said, ‘part of me does, but that’s not the part that’s hurting.’ She said, ‘what would the other part of you say back to that then?’ A small voice said, ‘I’m disgusting and I don’t want him to know that.’ She said, ‘who’s words are they?’ I thought for a while and said I didn’t know. She asked if someone ever called me disgusting and I said I couldn’t remember… ‘they’re my words,‘
I said, ‘the memory is weird though you know, it’s like… what’s it like? It’s like you know those two way mirrors they have in police interview rooms?’ she nodded, ‘it’s like I’m standing on the other side of one of those and I’m watching it happen, and I’m so fucking angry with that girl for not doing anything, she should have done something. I should have done something!’ Anna said, ‘do you know why you did nothing? You don’t have to tell me if you don’t want to.’ I said, ‘yeah….’ I was feeling quite spacey and eventually said, ‘I think I was frightened of what might happen if I did something…’ she said, ‘of someone finding out? Of someone knowing? But who would you run to anyway?’ I said, ‘yeah I mean my mum was pissed, it was a proper party atmosphere… I didn’t even know where she was… she won’t have noticed I was gone…’ I drifted for a while then said, ‘its like all the parts of me are not connected, they’re so set apart from each other… I’m so ashamed of that part of me, she’s not me.’ She said, ‘I’m so proud of you for talking about this, and you have control over this, you can tell me as much or as little as you want, you know that?’ I nodded. She said, ‘how are you doing with this? How does the pace feel?’ I said it was fine and thanked her for going slow.
I said, ‘I should have done something.’ She acknowledged and asked, ‘how old were you?’ I paused for ages then said, ‘fifteen, fourteen maybe’. She said, ‘you were a child.’ I said I didn’t feel like a child, I was responsible and grown up, I recalled mum getting me to drive the car once when she’d had too much to drink and we needed to take the cat to the vet. Anna then gave other examples of me having to be more grown up than my years, listening to mum talking as if I was an adult friend. Trying to give me perspective on the situation while also showing me how much she has listened to over the past two years.
I shifted in my seat and said, ‘I started to tell you this when we first started working together but it was a long time ago so you might not remember, it was… we were… mum and I were meant to go to the cinema and…’ Anna interrupted and said, ‘yeah, you were in the car with your mum’ I nodded and felt good she remembered. I said, ‘we stopped for petrol, met up with these people. It was a party, like a venue… a work event or something. This guy we’d met had been giving me a lot of attention at the table… remember I told you… and I’d finally managed to get away and went to the toilet. I was there for ages I remember being there for ages, I planned on going to tell mum I wanted to go home.’ I started to feel a bit emotional at the thought of it. Anna said, ‘but you didn’t?’ in a sombre voice. I said, ‘no because… he had followed me to the toilet…’ there was quite a long silence and then Anna said, ‘did he force you to do something you didn’t want to do?’ I glanced up at her kind face and gave a tiny nod. My eyes searching deep into her face for any signs of what she might be feeling. There was a period of time when we weren’t talking but there was a lot happening. It was like she was giving space or acknowledging that I had just finally divulged something I’ve never said before. She said the next few sentences very slowly and deliberately, with a gentle yet slightly louder voice. ‘You were a child, Lucy. It was not your fault. I am so sorry that happened to you, Lucy…. did you hear that? It was not your fault.’ I was staring at the window frame and then said I felt weird and moved to sitting on the floor. Hugged my knees. The inner protector was ramping up, ‘generic therapy crap… this is what they’re trained to say… she doesn’t mean it!’ I could feel the hypervigilance pick up, eyes darting around the room. I felt myself slightly rocking, looked up at her as if to say, ‘can you hear it too? Prove them wrong! Please!’ She was looking right at me. She took a deep breath and said, ‘would you like a hug?’ I gave a massive nod. She has never asked me that before and it felt amazing. (A few sessions ago I asked her why I have to ask for a hug when I know another of her clients who happens to be my friend just gets offered them. She explained a very valid reason – it’s worthy of another post if I haven’t already written about it – and we clarified that if I’m struggling or dissociative, I want her to ask me if I want a hug). I love that she listens closely to what I need and if she can she will meet that need. She came and sat beside me slowly, twisted her body round to face mine and wrapped her arms tightly around me while saying, ‘Lucy, I see you, I’m here with you. You’re not alone. I am so so proud of you. You’re doing so well.’ I couldn’t cry, though it felt like I might burst there was so much emotion in me. I pulled away from the hug and she left her hand on my back for a few more minutes before slowly lifting it off. We sat for a while, silently and then I said, ‘I like that you’re sitting beside me, thank you.’ She said, ‘I like sitting beside you too, you’re very welcome.’
Things slowed down. We sat just breathing next to each other on the floor. I wanted to lean into her but I didn’t. After a while I said, ‘when I went back to school on the Monday, nothing felt the same, I remember feeling like there was something wrong with me, other people would boast about doing things like that and I didn’t understand why I didn’t feel like boasting, it’s like I hadn’t categorised what had happened in the right compartment.’ Anna said, ‘It’s important to remember that perhaps people were boasting about similar things because they wanted it to happen, it was a choice, they wanted to do it… you didn’t have a choice, you didn’t want it. Does that sounds right?’ I nodded.
I said, ‘I’m so annoyed with myself for not telling you what happened. I haven’t said it yet, still!’ Anna said, ‘it’s like that spiral we sometimes talk about…’ she traced a spiral on her leg and continued, ‘we’ve circled round the topic and allowed you to explore how you feel about it without sharing more than you’re ready to share, it’s important to honour that part of you that’s done such a good job in protecting you for all your life. We got closer to the centre of the spiral today and that might be enough for you, or you might want to revisit it or share more. You have control over that. It’s important that you hear me say that… it’s up to you how much you tell me.’
I was looking at the table and Anna looked in that direction too. She said, ‘I can see your keyring shining through your glass of water, the colours all merging together. It looks safe.’ Looking back I can see she was encouraging me to get grounded. I told her it was made from the fabric of one of the slings that I used to wear my children in. I reflected how safe they were when they were carried by me. Anna said, ‘you deserved that safety and security too when you were a child, every child does, but you didn’t have it.’ She said some other things and then brought us back to looking at the colours through the water.
We had about ten minutes to go and just like she always does, Anna brought me back to ‘today’ by asking about my week and any plans for the weekend. I got my third hug of the session on the way out and sat I’m my car for about fifteen minutes with the occasional tear making a bid for freedom.
I only discovered what shame feels like about 10 months ago. I mean, I’ve felt shame my whole life, it was most likely the first emotion I ever experienced as a screaming baby who’s gnawing need would forever go unmet by her parents and it continued to pulse through my veins every day since then… but what I mean is, I can pin down the exact moment I was able to name the feeling. To say, ‘this is shame I am feeling.’
I was in session and talking to Anna about some photos I’d seen on Facebook of my cousins visiting my mum at her new house. My mother had chosen to move 500 miles away from me and I was yet to receive an invite. I’d told my brother that I was feeling left out and isolated, even though I know my mum and my cousins are toxic and no good for me, I felt like I was missing out on this great thing. I was missing my mum (or rather the idea of her) and was sad that she had chosen to live so far away from me. My brother said something like, ‘why would you still care about all that? I thought you were over this!? You’ve been in therapy for over 5 years!’ (I would like to interject here and have it be known that my brother and I have a very close and supportive relationship, we’ve since talked about this exchanges and he’s apologised for being so harsh. He was worried about me and wanted me to remember how far I’d come and how he’s I’d been working).
As I relayed the situation to Anna she asked me what came up for me when my brother said those words. I said my usual, ‘I don’t know what this feeling is but it’s filling me up, it’s bigger than me. It’s like I’m drowning, I can’t breathe and I want to scratch it out of me…’ Anna asked a few more questions and in a moment of total clarity I said, ‘it’s like he was shaming me for wanting to matter to her, still… it’s shame! I feel shame! Oh my god it’s suffocating!’ Anna nodded and repeated, ‘the shame is suffocating, overwhelming, as if it could drown you…’ She congratulated me for naming it for the first time and explained how the feeling really is bigger than me because it triggers very young memories. I feel physically smaller when I’m feeling shame.
From then on shame has been a main player in my sessions… it comes up a lot! I still struggle to recognise it from time to time and by the very nature of shame it makes me want to hide, retreat, dissociate. But it’s where the work is.
Today I was confronted with a very uncomfortable situation. I’d basically been accused of missing a target that was really important to me. In the great scheme of things it isn’t that important but what happened, the way I was spoke to felt horrible. I was going to do what I always do which is not talk about it and just try to get over it but instead I tried something new. I relayed it to my very wise friend (https://girlintherapy.wordpress.com) who listened to me and validated that it was unfair. She asked me what the core emotion was and I slowly worked my way towards the realisation that it was shame. It’s an illusive, slippery fucker, shame. Sirena helped me find somatic experiencing movements that could help me discharge my rage and shame then encouraged me to be gentle with myself and find a soothing activity. She then suggested I could write about how I feel, with the possibility of sending the letter to the organisation involved. I took her advice, I went for a run, I had a bath, I wrote an email. I felt better. This things really helped. But what helped the most was her compassion. It helped me be compassionate with myself, which defused the shame. It was burning a hole in my chest but instead of leaving it there I let it move through me, then it left.
This is new. Noticing shame, talking about it, feeling it in my body. Doing something physical, something soothing, something practical. Watching the shame dissipate. Compassion is the key. And bloody good friends.
When I started working with Anna all of my weird crazy behaviours became exaggerated… I wasn’t even aware of what was happening but basically I pushed every button, crossed many boundaries and in her words, ‘tested her to the max’… she says I was so certain she would leave me that I laid it all out on the table in the first couple of months like a challenge… ‘this is as bad as it can get so if you’re going to leave, you better leave now!’ That made me chuckle and squirm because it felt familiar, and embarrassing. One particular instance around session 20, I sent her a long text message which went along the lines of, ‘everything is awful, nothing’s getting any better, life is bleak and black and all things are dark and hopeless and I don’t know if I can keep myself safe tonight but I’m worried that you’ll terminate our work if I can’t look after myself…’ In my head I was freaking out because the previous night I’d been triggered during an intimate moment with my husband, had a flashback and then cut myself. All this came out of the blue and hadn’t happened for years… I was worried that if she knew I’d hurt myself she would stop working with me. A few hours after I sent the message she phoned me. I was completely shocked and didn’t answer. She had been very clear about the fact that she would never reply to a message unless it was about session timings and we would only speak on the phone if I asked for a call. I quickly sent her a message saying I was fine and that I would see her at the next session. I then sent a few more texts apologising if she thought I was trying to manipulate her with my initial text and then finally the following day I couldn’t take it anymore and I asked her to call me. She arranged to call me the following day and when we spoke on the phone she was reassuring and brief. She gave me a ten minute boundary and instructed me to not get into the depths of the issue on the phone. I asked for reassurance that she wasn’t planning on leaving me and she assured me that she had no intentions of leaving and that she would be there at the next session to talk to me about all this.
At the next session she started by saying she wanted to address the messages. She was very formal and stern seeming, she laid down some pretty solid new boundaries around texting. She called it ‘hammering in the posts’. She made it clear what I was and wasn’t allowed to say and that she wouldn’t reply to any texts other than session time arrangements. She told me that I was harming myself by sending those kinds of messages in full knowledge that I wouldn’t get a reply, it was a re-enactment of getting no support for my cries for help as a child. That made sense but it was so excruciating. She then talked about the frame of therapy and how she needs to keep herself well and that means having sessions in a protected space and time… she said, ‘your messages are encroaching on the rest of my week… I didn’t think you’d need the text support for this long…’ among other things. She tried to help me understand that in order for her to be able to help me, we needed the boundaries. She explained that boundaries are a caring and loving thing to do, not a rejection but a way to maintain health in a relationship… presently I can see how that is true however back then I was swimming in shame and triggered rejection wounds. I was sure she hated me, that I was ruining her life and that she regretted ever agreeing to work with me (though she ensured me that wasn’t the case). I couldn’t look at her, I couldn’t sit still. I wanted to peel my skin off and set my bones alight… I was in pure agony.
I have held the shame and pain of that session close to my heart for nearly two years. I drew about it to try to express to Anna how her delivery and choice of words had built a wall between us but I never showed her (see image at the start of the post). In the session yesterday I finally told her how I’d felt. I awkwardly blurted out how painful it had been to hear her say that she basically felt burdened by me. I don’t know if I missed something but I feel like she wasn’t fully absorbing what a big deal it was to me. She did say it was great that I told her, she encouraged me to keep going when I wanted to stop, she felt like it was a good sign of progress that I was being honest with her and not keeping it bottled in. But something inside me felt full of doubt and fear, certain that she must hate me. I feel like I lost the connected, bonded feeling and just became very isolated. I told her it had frightened me when she called me after I’d sent that text, that she had broken her boundary and that unsettled me. She explained that part of the boundary we set when we created the contract around texting and phoning was that if she felt I was at risk of harming myself she would call me or my named person on our contract. I said, ‘well maybe I needed you to believe that I was going to be okay and felt like you over reacted..?’ she said, ‘I didn’t know you well enough back then to take that risk, it was my duty to make sure I followed up, I was very concerned about you because of the way you worded the message which is why it’s really important you don’t send texts where you’re expecting me to read between the lines… it has to be clear communication… does that make sense?’ I said it did.
I said that when I was working with my last therapist it felt like I was a box of fireworks that had accidentally been set alight and he just sat me down in the corner of the room to fire off inside myself, sparks ricocheting around the room, with him sitting unscathed occasionally offering compassionate glances. He would let me email him as often as I wanted and he never reacted to the evocative things I wrote in them. I interpreted that as ultimate acceptance, ‘unconditional positive regard’ as he kept referring to it… but I wonder now if it was too passive… a bit neglectful… lazy? Working with Anna has been starkly different. She opened the box immediately and my sparks hit her and it scared me… it maybe frightened her too… she showed me how my behaviour and the things I said could impact her. She wasn’t going to let me ‘misbehave’ while she turned a blind eye. She was going to let herself care enough about me to really see me and I was going to need to bare that in mind if we were to form a healthy connection.
At our session yesterday I told Anna that at the end of our second session she looked me in the eye as I was leaving and said, ‘you don’t need to do this on your own anymore, Lucy.’ I told her I felt two things when she said that. A small part of me lit up with hope and wonder, gratefully ready to receive all the help and care, while a much more powerful part was furious. I said, ‘it was like who does she think she is, she doesn’t know me, she doesn’t know what my life is like, I am completely on my own, I walk out of here and I have to deal with this all by myself, I only have her one session a week… what a generic, shitty thing to say!’ I stopped and scanned her face. She had a curious, open expression and seemed intrigued by this insight, I asked if she was hurt by what I was saying or if she felt anything negative at all towards me and she said, ‘no keep going, this is really good…’ so I continued explaining how maybe a part of me took her up on the challenge… ‘maybe I thought okay – you wanna show me how I don’t have to do this on my own? I’m gonna give you a window into the bleakest, most desperately alone moments of my life and see how you handle it…’ she didn’t say much but she was listening. I wonder if she was reflecting on how unhelpful her statement of support had been, or maybe she was hating me… who knows. She talked about how this really shows us that we can be hurt by people, we can hold anger for them, but we can also have a relationship with them and like other parts of them… something was lacking, I think I wanted her to apologise for it all, to really connect to what I was saying rather than give a general overview of the therapeutic learning. I told her I wished it had never happened – that I was ashamed of my behaviour back then and I know better now but back then I’d never experienced her kind and caring nature, I just saw her as harsh and very boundaried. Anna talked a little about how I wasn’t able to take in any kindness when we started working together and that she needed to establish safety within our relationship, then build trust, then introduce care.
Writing out my thoughts on the session is helping me process it all. I don’t feel as anxious about it now and I can see that Anna probably thinks it was a great session and would be very surprised to learn that I had such a massive kickback from what was discussed. I no longer feel an urgent need to check that we’re okay. I will wait and see her the day after tomorrow and check in with her then.
I unintentionally opened up a very delicate and painful topic with only fifteen minutes to go. I didn’t know the time because we’ve agreed for the clocks to be turned away from me so Anna can hold and manage the time frame. I was prone to clock watching which would make me censor myself.
I told Anna that after weeks and weeks of not feeling overly emotional about anything, I cried a lot yesterday afternoon because it suddenly dawned on me on a deeper level that I care so much for her and she’s not mine… that I don’t know her outside these sessions, that I can’t just speak to her whenever I want, that she’s ‘just my therapist’… yes I’ve felt this before (and I felt it with my previous therapist) but this was different. It was a terrifying grief. I’m guessing it was a younger part that has only recently come into my consciousness. I know this is a familiar part of the process of healing from attachment wounds and I have read so much on this issue, but yesterday it hit me like a bolt of lightening and floored me.
I flippantly brought it up as I’d actually forgotten all about it (another reason I think it was a younger part of me that felt it… the ‘apparently coping adult’ in the room was quite happy talking about other stuff) so I mentioned it and then it couldn’t be properly explored and had to be packed away for another time. Anna started talking about how it’s a really important topic and perhaps when these things come up I could make a note of it and bring it up in session. I was getting more and more annoyed and said, ‘that’s what I’m doing! I’m bringing it up now. Why is this pissing me off so much?’ That’s when Anna let me know we only had fifteen to go. I said, ‘oh so what you mean is I should have brought this up at the start of the session and she said, ‘no, because what we’ve spent the past 40 minutes talking about was really important, but perhaps we could continue talking about this on Tuesday.’ She suggested I was pissed off because one of my perfectionism triggers is when I feel like I haven’t made the best use of the session. I think it also bothered me because earlier in the session I’d brought something up that she’d done that hurt me nearly two years ago. Things were feeling shakey inside. I don’t feel like she fully acknowledged either topic. Maybe she didn’t understand how much they meant to me…
I don’t know exactly what I’m feeling right now but it’s not anger… it’s also not grief or longing. I feel panicky and anxious and triggered. I feel like I want to self harm. I will work hard to not hurt myself but there’s a big draw to a well worn ‘coping strategy’ that I know will stop this ache. I need the connection with Anna to help me process the old relational traumas. I need her to help me co-regulate… and to reassure me that we’re okay.
I don’t know what the right thing to do is. Do I text and ask her for a phone call to get the reassurance that we’re fine and she’s not annoyed with me? What if she can’t give me a call? What if we’re not fine? What if she doesn’t reply? Do I hold it together and wait the 3 days until our next session and practice resilience? She’s always congratulated me for asking for a call and getting my needs met rather than torturing myself til we next see each other but maybe she would expect me to hold this by myself…? I’m so confused and mixed up and wish this session hadn’t happened.