I’ve been reflecting more on yesterday’s post. Some of you asked if I was truly feeling “stuck” or perhaps something else? I think you’re onto something there. It feels like being stuck, but I’m not sure that’s the most accurate way to describe what’s happening.
Which is a couple of things, really.
First of all, as someone pointed out – this may very well be a test that the System is using to gauge the true reliability and trustworthiness of this therapist. I would defnitely agree with that. They have many reasons to do so. I certainly don’t blame them, but it tends to cause a lot of interference in session when I am trying to speak as Andi and receive all this frantic input from Others, causing me to question virtually everything I say. I don’t know how long this “testing period” will last for. And I sincerely hope this is a test the therapist can actually pass. Somtimes we set up tests because we know people will fail them. It’s a way to prevent them from getting closer to us without actually having to talk about it or work through it. We just get to throw up our hands and say, “See! You couldn’t do this after all!”
I don’t want to do that again.
Also, because there is so much conflicting emotion around the very idea of being in therapy, I think that is where a lot of my frustration comes from. I am not always the strongest Part when in that office. Or, I am, but I’m up against more than one Insider – which puts the odds against me. It’s so hard to push through all of that noise and chaos to even figure out what I’m feeling or thinking on my own. I think that’s where a lot of my confusion and helplessness comes from. And I also believe that my intense fear and need to defend myself comes from the Parts whose job it is to protect the System. They are ensuring I don’t get hurt (even if that ends up leaving me feeling utterly abandoned and alone). Or, the increased activity of introjects – who are working overtime to protect the secrets (and our abusers) – may be creating an additional strain on the conversations.
The introjects don’t want me talking about it. The traumatized parts don’t want to piss off the introjects. I don’t want to agitate the traumatized parts. But I do want to talk about all of these memories that keep coming up and the dynamics of my family relationships.
I’m sure you can see how this is a problem.
Lastly, an email group I participate in for individuals with (or supportive of) Dissociative Identity Disorder recently brought up alters that are non-verbal. I only know of one alter that truly does not speak. Her name is Lucy. She’s a toddler and she communicates only by whispering to Anna, who’s about 7 or 8. It is incredibly difficult to identify (and thus meet) Lucy’s needs. There are also Parts I am not connected to or co-conscious with. Therefore it’s possible that the additional interference I experience actually comes from Parts that entirely lack the ability to express themselves verbally. Which may be why I end up in this panicked and confused state where I can’t seem to find any words to express what’s going on.
And, for the record, very few things agitate me more than being inarticulate or feeling misrepresented.
During last session, the therapist actually alluded to this. We kept going back and forth in a rather futile attempt to find common ground, but it seemed to just keep getting worse. At one point she just said, “Today, words are not enough. I think, actually, that the words are getting in the way. You need something more. I don’t know what that is right now, but maybe we need to accept that we just aren’t going to find each other through words today.”
Which, admittedly, was a little triggering because it reminded me of a similar incident with Zooey when we were in a similar place. She said that “although words are sometimes not enough, that is what we have available to us in therapy, and so that is what we need to use to figure this out.”
Yeah. That didn’t end up so well.
I don’t know. This isn’t terrible or awful or indicative of any major failings on either of our parts. It’s just uncomfortable. And it really feeds into my fear of becoming “too much” and having her jump ship on me. I think I’m mostly worried that if I can’t find my way out of this strange state of being defensive and afraid all of the time, this will end up being a self-fulfilling prophecy.
Which then makes me wonder – is that what happened with Zooey? Did I become so afraid of becoming someone she couldn’t handle that I became someone she couldn’t handle? Did I create the very scenario that led her to abandon me because I was so afraid she would do just that?
And, if so, how do I prevent myself from repeating that pattern with this therapist?