Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I Hate When the Counselor is Right

Tonight I had a private session with the counselor that has been working with W and me. It didn't start that way. It started as a joint counseling session, but I was in such a state and such a mess that it turned into just me and the counselor with W bowing out.

I dumped all the shit that I wrote in my last post, about my withdrawal, and we talked just about that for an hour. Interesting that the counselor wasn't a bit surprised by the problems I'm having based on things I've said about my upbringing and the way my family continues to function. She acknowledged that it is extra hard for me to deal with certain situations because of the insular type of family in which I was raised. It is difficult to move beyond what I know and what makes me comfortable.

For those without my background it might be difficult to understand why certain things are difficult for me. The counselor said that she is not at all surprised that I don't speak up for myself. I was taught in my family that it is not okay to speak up for yourself. I was taught that you work hard to get along with others even if that means subjugating your own interests, needs, desires. I do that very well. Then I get mad when others don't do the same for me, and I wonder when it is going to be my turn. I'm afraid to speak up for myself for fear of losing friendships so often others don't even know that I feel put out by giving in to their desires. On the rare occasion when I do speak up it takes very little from the other person to make me back down, do a 180 and give in to whatever they want.

Tears, many tears, flowed during tonight's session. I think I gained some valuable insights though into the problem, and we were able to celebrate certain small victories like my inviting a friend to go Christmas shopping with me for a day. It's a small thing, but it is huge. The counselor reminded me that my friend was probably as excited to be invited as I was to do the inviting. She asked me if I believed that, and I said no. She said she knew I'd say that, but that she wants me to know that lots of other people are just as insecure as I am. Lots of people out there are grateful to be invited somewhere. People aren't out there waiting to reject me. God, I wish I could believe that. I so much want to believe that. Maybe someday I will.


Fusion said...

I was taught that you work hard to get along with others even if that means subjugating your own interests, needs, desires.

I did that all the time with my wife, never did make her happy though. and now I've been working to break that habit. It takes time to change TS. Keep trying.

Jaded Bunny said...

There should come a time when people stop living in their childhood, acknowledge their parents screw ups, take responsibility for their own actions and start living their OWN lives.

We all have only this one go 'round. Shame to screw it up so badly.

For whatever reason.

Bunny said...

I also have believed that you go along to get along and am finally learning to stand up for myself and what I want. I can do it in some situations but not in others.

I pray for us both to have the strength to stand up for ourselves and have fulfilling relationships outside our families.

Trueself said...

Fusion - Yes, it does take time, and the good news is that I'm chipping away at it little by little.

JB - Yes, it is a shame when we go through life screwed up. Then again, we're all screwed up in one way or another. That's the part I too often forget, that others aren't better than me. They're all screwed up too. No better place to learn that than in the blog world where we open up the worst of ourselves as we work to become better.

Bunny - I join you in that prayer.

SeaRabbit said...

I'm just out of 3 year's of therapy for similar problem... I often feel as the outsider... and really, I am... in my opinion... ;-)
I wish you will find a way to accept yourself as you are and to be happy with it... it is not an easy task...;-)

Trueself said...

Searabbit - Welcome to my world. Nice to know there are others out there with that same feeling in that I am not alone. However, I hope we both (and all others like us) fine that way to accept ourselves as we are.