I kept a running list of all the sessions I had with Zooey. I recorded the dates of each session, whether they happened in her office or on the phone, and whether or not an office session was extended due to some sort of “crisis” or if a phone session was due to an urgent or emergency issue. Today, I went over that list and did a little math to determine the ratio of each type. Here are my results:
82 sessions total (100%)
69 regular office sessions (84.1%)
2 sessions with Wife included (2.4%)
13 extended office sessions (15.8%)
13 phone sessions total (15.8%)
1 phone session with Wife only (1.2%)
9 planned phone sessions (10.9%)
4 “emergency” phone sessions (4.8%)
17 “irregular sessions” (20.7%)
That means we literally spent 1/5th of our time on unscheduled crisis management. Maybe 1 out of 5 interactions seems like a lot, but it’s also important to note that not every unplanned session had the same duration as a full 45 minute session. There were also a few shorter phone calls (5-15 minutes, some planned, some not), both scheduled and unplanned text interactions, and several e-mails that we sent her (non-emergent and always with her explicit permission).
Also, in the final 3 months of therapy, I only had one session that went over time and one crisis phone session. Zooey stated that I wasn’t getting better and new issues were coming up. Well, maybe, but as I just stated, the amount of crises I was experiencing was decreasing. So, to me, that is evidence that I was indeed getting better and also learning how to manage my symptoms better.
Why is this important? Well, maybe it’s not. But Zooey made such a clear effort to point out how much time we’d spent in crisis together that I ended up internalizing it in a very shameful way. I walked away from treatment feeling like total shit about myself for needing so much “extra” care and attention.
But when you crunch the numbers, it wasn’t nearly as bad as it originally seemed. I think it’s a pretty big deal that 80% of the time, we just had regular therapeutic interactions as planned. Especially considering that I was uncovering a lot of intense trauma and dealing with the sudden realization that I have Dissociative Identity Disorder (as well as the emergence of parts interacting with Zooey regarding their own issues and concerns). These are not small issues, people!
So, honestly, Zooey can fuck off. This wasn’t about me being too much or needing a specialist or needing more attention and care. This was about me needing someone who knew what the hell they were doing and could handle sitting with the difficult shit I had to bring to the therapeutic space. Turns out that person was NOT Zooey, but you know what? That’s not my damn fault. Zooey did say that she was “not enough” for me, but she always said it within the context that she wasn’t enough because I needed more. No, lady, you just weren’t enough. And I’m sorry that you couldn’t handle that.
So thanks a lot for then taking that out on me….your fucking client. Real nice.
P.S. I also think it’s kind of sad that I kept such a list. How awful must I have felt about myself to keep a literal record of how much extra time I was taking out of this woman’s life???