After reading Zooey’s email response, it seemed like she was trying to set a boundary, but was simultaneously refusing to be explicitly clear with me about it. I felt like her email was a cop-out and that she was STILL not taking responsibility for her own actions and decisions. I also knew that if I didn’t ask for clarification, I’d agonize over what, exactly, she meant.

So, true to form, I wrote her back and simply asked for clarification:

Thank you for responding, Zooey.

This may be redundant for you, but I do want to be perfectly clear on this: are you telling me to not ever communicate with you again in any way?

I understand the restrictions on personal relationships post-termination. In person and in a previous email, you said that you welcomed updates about my life. It would seem you are perhaps backtracking on that, so now I am admittedly confused.
I think it would be best if we were both explicitly clear on the boundary you are setting. Otherwise, it will probably drive me crazy to try and guess what is or is not okay.
Thank you,
This was her response, which made me both laugh very loudly and cry a bit:

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NOW You Care About Ethics?

Zooey responded to my voicemail by emailing me. Here is what she said:

I received the voicemail you left on Friday. In response to your questions regarding contact between us now that we have terminated, I want you to know that my profession’s code of ethics prohibits personal relationships with current or former patients. Please be respectful of this. I encourage you to explore and work through your feelings with your current therapist.

I am admittedly emotional about this. She initially said that she “welcomed updates about my life”. She emailed me back last month. She didnt give me any parameters to follow. And as I’ve already pointed out here and here, she was certainly unethical in her termination process.

But I think I am actually relieved. Now I can really begin to let her go. It will continue to be painful and awful and messy. But at least she has given me the gift of FINALLY setting a boundary on this. And although it’s irritating that she just now figured out that her profession has an ethics code, at least this wil give me a chance at closure. 

Better letter than never?