I don’t quite know how to quantify how much you’ve helped me since I first walked into your office almost a year ago. I know that a lot changed for me all at once that month. I started antidepressants, and went to my first 12-step international convention. So it’s hard to pinpoint any direct source of all the positive change I’ve felt, how much is working with you, how much is recovery work, and how much is the drugs. But, fuck! What a difference.
You asked the hard questions. I didn’t want anyone to question my decision to stay with my husband, I said because I didn’t want their judgment… but I think the truth was that I knew I would crumble if anyone asked.
Such a direct, pointed, yet simple question. You asked, “What’s stopping you from getting a divorce?” And within two months I’d moved out. Within 3 I knew for certain I wanted a divorce. I hadn’t wanted anyone to ask, and yet somehow it was ok when you did. I think maybe I felt safe.
When I wanted to numb my feelings with a random boy I barely knew, you said what I needed to hear. “Your recovery would be at risk.” You’re very good at saying what I need to hear, not what I want to hear.
So it’s hard to say exactly how much was you, and I know that it wouldn’t have meant shit if I hadn’t been willing to do the work myself. But, still. I really can’t put into words how much your help has meant to me. I know on some level you’re just doing your job… but at the same time, it’s clear you care. Not only do you want to help me, but you care about me. You want to see me succeed!
Maybe there are many other therapists who would take the same, or similar, approach that you have. But I got you. And I am desperately clinging to that life preserver you threw.
I don’t know why my fear of abandonment was triggered so strongly by the insurance issues. Especially because I know that I could, and would, pay out of pocket if it came down to it. I can’t put a price on my mental health, and I’m grateful to be in a position where I don’t have to.
I’m positively terrified by even the slightest hint of losing you as a therapist.
Yet, I’ve just recently come to look forward to a time where I will feel well enough that I don’t need your services. One day, I will be ready to take off those training wheels. Which is terrifying in its own way, but in a good way.
But for now, I am clinging to that life preserver with everything I’ve got. And any tug that might make me lose my grip paralyzes me with fear.
So, I guess that’s how I feel about you, and our work together. I am eternally grateful for your kindness, compassion, and yet decisive way of telling me what I need to hear.
Thank you for all you do,