After my intense, in-depth post about my family dynamics, I wanted to follow up what came about as a result of therapy. In the small self-important hope that it may help someone else who resonated with any of it. That, and I journalled about it but something about blogging it online seems to get it out better, ha.
After holding back tears from the ‘amount of things’ I know I still need to talk about (aka. pedos and creeps, let’s save that for another day, boy, he has no idea what’s coming). I sat and kind of sighed about the fact that I had to bring something up once again that I thought once I’d ‘cried about’ it would be done with but I was finding that it wasn’t working quite that way for me. Was I doing therapy ‘wrong?’ As usual, my therapist has a good explanation for me that satisfies and quenches my doubts. ‘Therapy is about your life experience and as you continue on in your life the same issue can come up in a different way, you’re changing as a person so the same issue may then need to be discussed taking that into account. Some issues also have many layers to them that need to be uncovered.’ Ah, makes sense. And from a different angle it was. It wasn’t the angle last year of getting the pain out, realising I can’t change my mum. It was from the angle of who I am now and the new dynamic in the house with my sister.
I told him again of the comments she made when I was sick, of my experience last week of me calling her and her not coming to me. How she spends more time with one sister more than anyone of us. Of how I only learnt things were different for me once I got out into the world and made friends with people the same age as my mum and realised they actually hung out with their kids. After a while he asked me what is it that I used to do or feel like doing when I’m faced with these situations. ‘I feel like calling her out on it, not to start an argument, but to let her know that it’s not OK or normal, but if I do, I get called argumentative.’
‘And do you think you’re wrong?’
‘No, I don’t think I’m wrong, but I think it’s useless’.
He laughed and said I summed it up perfectly.
It felt nice to know that it’s not always BPD making me ‘think things’ or ‘act up’ and if there’s something I’ve learnt and am still learning time and again in recovery is that often, we usually have a damn good reason for feeling the way we do. It’s just what we do with it. I am starting to find that my dynamics with my therapist are good, I talk, bring up loads of shit and he always seems to have some miracle ‘psychologist trick or phrase or line of thought’ that helps me to totally see things in a new way and learn. In fact, he’s probably getting used to the sight of me going ‘ah’ then pausing and tilting my head, finger on chin, deep in thought – almost a little comically obvious in my demonstration that I am ‘pondering’ on what he’s just taught me.
‘I want you to think about how much of this has to do with her, with her as a person and how much of this you think has to do with you?’
After 50 minutes of hashing it all out, it dawned on me almost instantly. This has to do with her. It has nothing to do with me. All this time, I have been getting upset and reacting and struggled to realise that this isn’t my stuff.
‘Yes, it affects you, but it doesn’t have anything to do with you.’ His golden phrase that I made a mental note to write down once I got home so that I could use it to separate myself when/if I do get upset in similar situations. The beauty of this, I realised on my journey home was, I could apply it to so many people in my life that manage to piss me off by way of association (you know like nugget head in-laws or annoying nitpicky colleagues, I’m sure your mind has already come up with examples of your own). I don’t need to react to their shit, to their life situations, I don’t need to ‘call them out’. Yes, maybe at times, I need to assert myself, but I don’t need to take on all the emotions because It’s not about me.