Something happened in the fourth and fifth session that broke through some of my defenses about therapy. Well not really during the sessions but after the sessions. It’s put me into a big funk along with everything else that is going on.
In the agency where the group therapy is they require us to fill out a questionnaire at the beginning, middle and end the 10 week group therapy. The questions are about how you felt during the last week and are rated from never to always with everything in between.
In the fourth session we had to do the questionnaire for the second time. One the of the questions something like ‘how often you’ve thought of suicide in the past week’. I answered without thinking ‘frequently’. Apparently that caught the attention of the facilitators. After the session they asked if I would stay behind for a moment. They started questioning me about the suicide thing. I started to get all defensive about it. It’s been my experience that therapists can be fairly reactive about this and I was ready for it. Except that didn’t happen. I was caught off guard with the way they approached it. They asked me questions about what was going on for me and how could they help. I explained what suicide was for me and all that surrounded my way of thinking about it. In the course of the conversation one of the facilitators said she lost two brothers to suicide. After about 45 minutes of talking with them they asked me if I would phone one of them if things got too overwhelming. I said I would even though I know I would not.
As we were talking I could feel my defenses slowly disintegrating. I could feel by they way they were treating me that they were coming from a place of concern and compassion for me not a place of fear or a place of protecting themselves or it’s their job to ask.
After the fifth session they called to me just as I was about to walk out the door. They wanted to check in with me to see how things were going for me. They also thanked me and told me they appreciated my honesty about suicide and the few other things I told them.
I found their concern hard to deal with and it brought about a vulnerability I’ve tried hard to keep walls around. It opened some of the wounds I was feeling with my old t. I thought I was over it all but I guess not. The problem is I need to find a way to deal with it before I drown in it all. It put me into a funk I haven’t been able to shake.
The facilitators of this group are nice, too nice. They both gave me a hug.