ways of communicating between psychotherapist and client

ways of communicating between psychotherapist and client
by jen kiley (inspired by a fellow post-scriber)


lady antebellum – need you now

a symbol for support and caring but no emails

when i was seeing my former therapist she encouraged me to write emails to her as often as i wanted to and to call her to leave messages knowing that it was for my benefit and that she would not necessarily answer or return my phone calls. it was meant for me to be therapeutic. she also gave my new therapist permission to forward my correspondence for her. we all discussed the 2 year rule and my former therapist said that after that time we could test out becoming friends when the time was up and that meant meeting for tea and emails and friending on facebook and whatever else felt right. that’s why i am so confused that everyone including my former therapist suddenly put an abrupt stop to any communications (emails) at the behest of my former therapist. it makes no sense. we were close. it was real. it wasn’t in my imagination. she inspired me. she became my muse and she knew all this and approved. and right now she also knew i was so utterly vulnerable because of my friend’s death so suddenly. i’m still reeling from losing her and losing both of them in less than five months time. then my doc’s husband died four days after my friend. i am very close to her also. we have a very special relationship. i don’t feel like i did anything wrong by trying to let my former therapist know i still cared and was being blocked from writing to her. none of it makes any sense to me except that now i feel a need to cut her out of my life totally and thoroughly. which is eventually going to effect me in a really painful way. now i am just feeling anger and hurt. the manuscript that i am working on revolves around what happens in a therapeutic relationship and it is semi- autobiographical. my former therapist is at the center with me sharing my story as i speak to her in my head and write it down on paper. it’s more expansive than i can truly explain. it’s like a patch work quilt of ideas and feelings and experiences and more, my former therapist was my inspiration to start this project to begin with and important to its completion. if anything good will come out of this entire experience is that i may just get closer to my new therapist and get past the anger and really work with her. but even there, my new therapist and i were having serious and a fun time with my (our emails).

i suggested to my former therapist to consider doing something like live chat through something like Skype. i know there would probably be confidentiality problems. i did a Skype session with a former therapist awhile back and we are expecting to do one this week sometime. emailing is very cathartic. I know it was really cathartic for me but i am moving forward and letting it go (amazing for me) and set up a work sheet where each day or as i am inspired i will record on my laptop on a therapy work sheet, all that transpires between our sessions and she may just get more phone calls which until now have been few. i have just a touch of phone phobia when it comes to being personal and major separation anxiety problems that’s why the need for the contact with email, which i could do when i felt a need to connect but the work sheet should hopefully satisfy some of those requirements but it won’t be the same, my therapist won’t be sending me short cute notes to let me know we have connected. a comment on my most recent post helped to bring out all these thoughts and feelings and reflections. i still don’t know how i will get over the betrayal. i don’t take very well to that happening to me, especially when there is no sense to be made out of it. she is probably right about the kindness and compassion and the role she played as my therapist and me as her client but she never really understood the transference because she never wanted me to talk about it. we spent too much time working on my agoraphobia rather than in the office dealing with all the other emotional and traumatizing issues. the commenter is very genuine and kind and i thank her again for listening. i do think it was time for me to have the therapist i have now. nothing i do seems to make her want to go away and i have been really pissed off at her where i never could be with my former therapist. she did work on teaching me to open up my emotions and now i feel the pain and tears fall from my eyes again which stopped when i was a kid and smart enough to know crying just got us beaten. now it seems to be okay and everyone accepts me when i do lose it or i cry. amazing. serendipity. what will the future bring and will we all be alright. ~jen~

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