I have been thinking some more about what happened yesterday.
I know that being unintentionally late for my session was intensely triggering. But I also think that the way my therapist responded to my lateness added fuel to the shame fire.
I suppose I was sort of stunned that she seemed so unfazed and unconcerned by my lateness. Her response that the hour is mine to use however I want to use it is fundamentally true, but it wasn’t good enough.
What does that really mean? If I just never showed up again, would she even care? Am I so disposable that she can simply wash her hands of me if I stopped coming to sessions? Do I mean so little that she could simply walk away from me if I put up resistance?
Probably. And probably for good reason. But that is not cool.
I don’t necessarily think I wanted her to be in a state of panic about me being late. I have never been more than slightly late and I’ve never missed a session (even when I wanted to) because I am very cognizant of not being manipulative or doing too much communicating through “acting out” behaviors. There are moments when I want to behave in a way that would be provocative, but I work hard to avoid that because it never truly pays off.
However, her (apparent) utter indifference was startling. And this is something that I quite often feel from her. I am sure that if I spoke with her about it, she would deny indifference and give some eloquent explanation for why she responds the way she does.
But the truth is that I wanted her to fight for me.
And she didn’t. Which really hurts.
Her presence in my life is powerful. I have given her the privilege of getting to know me and our work together has allowed her to become part of my support system – a system that is vital to my ability to remain functional.
If it means so little to her, what does that mean for me?
I feel so alone.
Why won’t she fight for me?
Why am I not worth it?
Why do I not matter enough?