Friday, April 11, 2014

A lot of the stuff my therapist tells me to do feels unnatural/dishonest/etc. For example, she has told me not to talk about certain things with my partner, even if those things are really bothering me. Or, some of the stuff she tells me to do feels like head games/manipulation. I am not very good at doing what she says to do. In fact, I usually don't, because it feels contrived. I'm not good at pasting a smile that I don't feel, onto my face. She says that men need to feel like they're in control. That masculine energy is oriented towards problem solving/fixing stuff. That I need to be more feely and to talk about how things make me feel. I cannot see that expressing my feelings that way is a good thing. It seems to me that he is somewhat overwhelmed with/disgusted by the degree of feeliness that I already express, which is generally less than that of most women, IMHO.

And I'm not sure what the answers are:

  • Am I fundamentally incapable of having a stable relationship?
  • Is this therapist a good fit for me?
  • Is it *this* relationship? It's really hard for me to open up and trust someone, and despite our differences, we're still fairly compatible and, except for a couple of really unpleasant areas, fairly happy together. I am disinclined to simply discard someone that I love, in the spurious hope of finding something that magically works with minimal effort.
  • Am I not expressing/articulating what I want, in a way that can be heard, rather than dismissed?
  • Or am I too pushy and need to STFU and be glad for what I have, even though it feels that that has just been drastically, abruptly pruned?
  • Am I too trusting?
  • Not trusting enough?

I am flashed back to my teen years, the dinner table. It is not my day to sit next to Mom. We have to take turns, because everyone wants to sit next to Mom, and nobody wants to sit next to my stepfather, with his arsenal of toothpicks, etc. She has just served us all dessert along with our meal. My stepfather's fork, as much a weapon as an eating implement, takes a bite of my dessert. You cannot save desssert, or anything good, for last in our family. I protest. He chuckles and takes another bite. I start in on my dessert, because if I sit there whining about it, the entire thing will vanish in the meantime. I have to eat it as fast as I can and get what's good before it goes away, but the very act of having to fight for it steals away the enjoyment of it. And in case you're wondering, no, I couldn't steal a bite of the cake from HIS plate. He'd stab me with the fork if I tried.

There are people who enjoy struggling for, fighting for what they want, and who feel gratified when they get it. I'm not such a person. I don't want to have to fight for things. At the moment when I have to assert myself, the appeal of getting whatever it was that I wanted, is reduced, especially if that was something fairly basic that other people just get and take for granted.

I don't know what the answers are. I miss my old therapist. He would tell me when I was out of line and point out things that weren't as bad as I thought, and he never told me to act coy and manipulative.

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