Clinical Supervisor

Sorry for the long post…

It will take me a while to type this out.  I broke my wrist on Sunday.  Nothing major, just some small bone called the scaphoid. It is slow to heal. Now my left wrist is in a cast.  What more can go wrong, right?

I finally worked up the courage to phone the intake counsellor back.  When we quit playing telephone tag she said the clinical supervisor wanted to talk to me.  She said she had phoned me and left a message.  I didn’t get the message.  (I found out later my iPhone was having an issue with voice mail after the update.)  Then I played phone tag with the clinical supervisor (CS).  It did pass through my mind that it was odd she wanted to speak with me.  But my thoughts didn’t go any further than that.

During this time of phone tag to my horror she left a few messages on my home phone, one of which my sister listened to.  Of course CS says she’s so and so from certain agency and she’s trying to reach me.  That pissed me off.  Nobody knows my therapy history least of all my family.  My sister passed me the message but hasn’t asked about it. I wished the clinical supervisor could have been a little more discreet about it.  It should have been written all over my file about contact.  Cell phone only. I was really clear with my former t about this.

So finally today I was able to contact her. It just went from bad to worse.

So the conversation goes loosely like this.

CS says”can you go to the mental health clinic in your town?”  “No” I said because I know one of them personally plus I know all the office staff.  (perks of living in a small town)

CS says “can you go back to your t at the mental health clinic?” (which is government-run in the city). “No” I say, “she quit working there a long time ago”.  Besides I told her my pdoc doesn’t recommend me going back there. “oh” she says, “why is that?”.   I said “they are over burdened with clients and treatment may be only once a month.  And besides my pdoc told me they refer most of their trauma clients out.  (to places like yours I say in my mind).  “Oh” she says, “that’s too bad they don’t have anyone who does that work there.” “And besides” CS says, “it’s gov’t run, they are allotted funds for counselling.” “It’s harder for us since we are a non profit always trying to seek funds”.  She also mentioned often their people get trained in trauma work and leave to start private practices.  She also mentioned another agency I could try.

“Well” CS says, “I’m looking at your file and we can’t offer you long-term therapy”.  She said she was looking at my after care plan and it said “if I was looking for long-term therapy I would need to seek it elsewhere”.  (which I know, how could I forget) I said to her “what if I wasn’t looking for long-term therapy”?

She said “how would  I know you wouldn’t want long-term therapy once you started it.  (this where I start to wonder if I’m dreaming what she is saying or if I’m in some sort of nightmare).  I told her if I had a start date and an end date I would be fine with it.  I also said during the group there were a few issues that came up that I would like to work on. And I didn’t think it would take long-term therapy as long as I had an end date. She said to me that she couldn’t be sure of this with me (the long-term thing).   CS also said to me “Well the therapist you want to see is so nice you won’t want to stop seeing her once you start.”  So I will have to decline your request to see a therapist here.

Then CS says,  “This is usually considered a conflict of interest but since you were with us for a while I will make an exception”.  “The therapist you want to see also has a private practice”. “I will give you her phone number and you can contact her.”  I asked her if she was going to talk to the therapist to make sure she knew what was going on.  The CS said she would do this so that the therapist would know it was ok.


By this time I am stunned and at a loss for words. And it was all I could do not to burst out into tears. I who will rarely cry.
This conversation has raised many questions in my mind.  My former t said the door was always open to her.  She said therapy would only be short-term but I was welcome to come back.  Is this still true?

What has my former t and the clinical supervisor discussed about me?  I know my former t told me on occasion that the CS was wondering when therapy was ending for me.  I think my former t fought CS to keep me in therapy.

Does the CS think I’m not intelligent enough to make my own decisions on whether I want long-term or short-term therapy at any given time?  How can she make that decision for me?  Based on my past history?  Does she have that right?  And even if I got attached to this therapist, therapy is done when they say it’s done no matter how I feel.  Am I the only one like this that they’ve had/have in their agency.

Who supervises the clinical supervisor?  She seems to have a lot of decision-making power about who gets therapy?

The therapist I wanted to see was concerned about what was opened up for me within the group and said it wouldn’t be right or ethical to leave me hanging with this stuff all stirred up.  Apparently the clinical supervisor doesn’t think the same way.

You’re on your own kiddo.

I did phone the therapist I would like to see at her private practice and left a message on her voice mail.

Now I wait once again.

The CS said “you must be disappointed with this decision”.

Disappointed, no, Crushed, yeah…

This entry was posted in Abandonment, Attachment, Control, Conversation, Family, Hurt, Psychiatrist, Relationships, Therapist, Therapy, trauma, Trust, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

10 Responses to Clinical Supervisor

  1. I can only imagine what a nightmare conversation that was! I was simply shocked by reading it! I’m glad you’ve gotten it partly sorted out, but what the heck? So, is she going to “let” you see this therapist for free or is she referring you to her private practice where you would pay? Did you agree to short term therapy?

    I would be horrified to know what people know that much about your personal situation and therapy needs outside of your therapist and how they choose people based on short term vs. long term needs. I understand they can help more people short term than long term, but really…what is the quality of care then?

    • lostinamaze says:

      I’m still thrown by this. She is referring me to her private practice where I will have to pay. But I’m not sure I will hear from her now. I’m now wondering what kind of conversation went on between them. It’s kind of unbelievable what has happened.
      I did agree to short term but she didn’t believe that I would hold to that.

      I agree with you on the short term. I think that they don’t want to get bogged down with long term clients. Keep pushing people through to help people as much as you can in the short term. But to me it’s a disservice to clients in the long run. It tends to open stuff up which never really gets dealt with fully.

      They told me when I started therapy the clinical supervisor would be reviewing my case with my therapist on occasion. They do this with all cases. I just didn’t know my honesty in therapy would come back to bite me.

      • I just can’t believe this has happened. Like what a royal screw over. It makes me wonder why the therapist offered to see you in the first place, before she had talked it over with someone or maybe sought out some more details. I mean, lost, this is just disastrous in my mind, let alone for you who is actually going through this. Are there any other options for you to pursue at this point? I know you mentioned in your post you have to seek assistance outside of your home area.

        • lostinamaze says:

          There are some options. The problem is that I feel it is all rather daunting right now. It also entails a fair amount of travel to see potential therapists in the city which is an hour and a half away. There are only two therapists in my area (that I know of) one of which I know. I think I’ll wait though until my feelings settle before trying again.

  2. Oh, gosh, this makes me so angry! I can’t believe they treated you this way. So sorry 😦

    • lostinamaze says:

      I can’t believe it either. Never in a million years would I have thought this would happen. I’m not sure if I can reach out once again to try to find another therapist. It feels more like punishment than finding help for myself. ugh…

  3. Ellen says:

    Personally I’ve decided to pay for therapy as I can’t deal with the system. Well, that’s one reason. Even in Canada, where going to a psychiatrist would be covered by our insurance. But to get long term actual therapy, I think you have to pay. Short term solution focused therapy is popular with insurers and agencies, because it is cheaper. If you don’t want cost to be part of the equation, I think you have to pay. It’s not so terrible. It’s what I’m spending my extra money on. No expensive vacations, no fancy furniture.

    Also means you get to select exactly who you want to see. Not to be sneezed at.

    Sorry, I know this is not what you want to hear. But it’s been my experience. Good luck.

    • lostinamaze says:

      I realize now what you say is true. It just takes a few knocks on the head for me to really get it, it seems. I work a few extra jobs one of which I could dedicate the money to therapy. It would take a bit of wrangling with the money but I hope I can pay for a private therapist. Now for the task of finding one!

  4. Amanda says:

    I wish their were better healthcare options for you right now. It is not okay or fair that you were treated that way. I am glad that there are still some options for you, but I am sorry for the way it all played out. Just take some time to allow all of this to settle and pick back up and get back on to make sure you have the care you need.

    • lostinamaze says:

      I will take some time. When this kind of stuff happens it just makes me want to give up. So space is good. My experience in the mental health area is that it’s hard to get care, at least good care. But I will try again, hopefully something will work out.

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