Therapy resumed and everything got worse

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I wrote a few days ago about the crushing sense of overwhelm I’m feeling at the moment. My wife and I went away for a few days at the weekend, which was much needed. We just headed down to the coast and camped for a few days. It was hot and sunny and the camp site was rugged and mostly quiet. I made fires and we went for nice long walks in the countryside.

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We ended up cutting the trip short however, as my grandma’s health took a turn for the worse. She’s got a lot of chronic ailments and hasn’t been well for a long time, but this time it’s particularly worrying because her nurse thinks she has had a stroke. Her other illnesses are all manageable, to an extent, with pain medications and other drugs. But this is frightening.

On Sunday, we went to see my grandparents. Mainly, we wanted to check how my grandad was doing and cheer him up a bit. He’s 84 and still manages to do all my grandma’s care by himself, aside from the District Nurse who visits every few days to check on them. It has all got too much for him now. And I can see why. The physical complaints are one thing, but to see her like this is devastating.

My grandma is a bright, intelligent, caring woman, who has a great sense of humour. I’ve always been close to her. We have a lot in common, even down to the fact that I look exactly like her when she was my age. I think I feel even more connected with her because she was also abused by her brother when she was little. We’ve never spoken about it, but my mum shared this fact with me back when I was 11 and she found out what my brother had done to me.

I’ve always looked up to my grandma. We share a love of books and poetry and writing. She didn’t have any academic opportunities, but she has always delighted in mine. So to see her without her mental faculties, without what makes up her personality and what connects us, was really painful. I felt this gut wrenching fear that I’ve lost her already. The doctors haven’t confirmed whether it is a stroke, and they’re not planning to run any tests right now, but it’s difficult to be optimistic and see this change as something that could reversible.

When I saw her, she wasn’t really with it at all. She would occasionally become present for a moment and then get lost in her own world again. She kept coming out with completely random sentences that were unrelated to anything we said to her. She was like a little girl in an 80 year old body. There was something endearing about that, but it was heartbreaking at the same time.

This was just the last thing I needed, to add on to everything else that’s happening at the moment. On top of the stuff I mentioned a few days ago, my wife’s uncle is on trial for child abuse this week. The proceedings wrapped up today and we are expecting there to be a verdict tomorrow. I have so many feelings about this, but that’s a whole separate story that will make this post far too long if I write it all here.

I felt like I could manage, however, because J got back from her leave this week and I knew I’d have therapy again. But I went to my session on Tuesday and didn’t have the chance to talk about any of the things that have happened while J was away. She wanted to talk about anorexia, and I am too pathetic to say no and tell her what I need to talk about instead.

The session was really hard, because J spoke about how my anorexia makes her feel. She’s scared of where it’s going and she’s worried about me. And by default, I just felt shit about myself because I’ve caused her to feel that way. I know she wanted me to say I would change my behaviour, but I wasn’t willing to give her that.

When I got home, I also felt disappointed. Actually that’s an understatement, I felt hurt that J chose to pursue her own agenda in our first session back, even though she knew about a lot of what’s been going on for me while she was away. She didn’t ask about any of that. She didn’t check whether I wanted to talk about any of it. She brought up my food issues because that’s of concern to her and she wanted to discuss it. That left me feeling like she isn’t bothered about all the crap I’ve had to cope with in the last few weeks. Like it’s not of interest to her.

Today, I decided that I’d get over this and make sure that I chose what we discussed in our session this afternoon. I knew I should explain how the session yesterday made me feel and I worked up the courage to do that. After spending the morning feeling anxious about this, I got a text from J to say she needed to cancel our session. It was for a good enough reason, but I was absolutely gutted – and angry.

I feel really disappointed that today, again, I couldn’t speak about what’s bothering me. I have waited and waited and felt this pressure build and build, and I’ve coped because it was only a little longer and a little longer. My mood just spiralled this afternoon. I felt utterly miserable. Even though I know that J only cancelled because of a medical emergency with her husband, I felt rejected and ignored. It was a painful reminder that there are always going to be people in her life who are more important to her than me. It touches on all my abandonment insecurity, my constant fear that something will suddenly change for her and she will just drop me. Because that’s exactly what happened today.

All afternoon, I tried talking to myself. I tried to convince myself to be an adult about it. I told myself that she does care about me. That she rarely cancels. That it is perfectly reasonable for her to prioritise her family over her work. But none of that made the young, distressed part of me feel any better. The urge to self-harm was there for hours before I caved and did it. I questioned why I even wanted to, but that didn’t reduce the craving. And in the end, it didn’t help of course.

Right now, I really don’t want to go to my session tomorrow. I don’t want to talk about how I’ve been feeling today. I am ashamed of the impact this has had on me. But I don’t think I can go and see J without her noticing that I am upset with her. Plus, at the moment I don’t even know if we will have a session tomorrow. This all might even be delayed into next week now.

I really didn’t anticipate that I would feel so much worse for J being back this week.

 

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16 Comments Add yours

  1. ((((hugs)))))
    It sounds overwhelming. I get that wait for therapy. Then a sense of rejection, abandonment, loss… All piling up.
    Laura how about this. Maybe J thought you looked poorly and in pursuing her agenda she was trying to take care of you. If she is concerned about your health she would be failing in her duty of care not to talk about it.
    No. You were not too pathetic to say what you wanted. You were understandably caught on the back foot. Xx

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Laura says:

      Thanks Serena. I do know that J brought up this subject out of concern for me. It just felt hard because there was no time to speak about anything else, and I have so much going on. Hopefully today will be better. x

      Like

  2. I hope, at the very least, that you recognize your own admirable courage in being so open here about issues that many of us deal with and far too few of us talk about. I applaud you for that.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura says:

      Thank you for that compliment. I see it as necessary, rather than brave, but it made me feel good to know that you think I am courageous.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Alexis Rose says:

    Thats a lot of stuff going on. And reconnecting after your therapists vacation is a big part of that too. Hopefully you will have session tomorrow and go into the weekend feeling supported. ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura says:

      Thanks Alexis. Yeah the restarting therapy thing is always a bit tricky. I guess it will all level out by next week, as long as I can talk about it today. x

      Liked by 1 person

  4. manyofus1980 says:

    laura, you have a right to your feelings, you should never feel shit for the way you feel. its totally understandable that you would feel this way. you had a hell of a lot to deal with. I hope you will have a session tomorrow. xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura says:

      I appreciate the reminder that it’s OK to have my feelings. It’s just hard not to be ashamed of having such a childish reaction. I’m seeing J later, so hopefully I can manage to talk to her about some of this. x

      Liked by 1 person

      1. manyofus1980 says:

        Oh great. Happy you get to see her later 💝🙂

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Terri R. says:

    I agree with everyone who has posted. Your feelings are valid and don’t ever be ashamed of them. Maybe next time at therapy, when J says, “let’s discuss…” try really hard to say, “but I have this that I really need to talk about”. Remember, the therapy is for you and what you are having trouble dealing with which leads to the other issues of why you are there. You have so much going on and they are heavy. Thank you for sharing with us and trusting us in the blog world. Blessing on your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura says:

      Thanks Terri. I am always aware of my lack of assertiveness and I know therapy is the best place to start working on it. It’s a scary risk to take though!

      Like

  6. bethanyk says:

    I am so sorry to hear about your grandmother not doing well. That has to be so upsetting. Your camping pictures were great. How frustrating that you cannot discuss what you want during therapy. Part of therapy SHOULD be you having control. I just don’t understand why your therapist is being this way.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura says:

      Yeah it’s horrible to see her so vulnerable and so different to her usual self. It was a bit of a nasty crash back to earth after the lovely days we had camping. I think my T took over that session because she is worried. And I understand that. It just left me feeling missed / ignored in a way, which was hard to deal with. I need to be better at taking control I guess.

      Like

      1. bethanyk says:

        I really hope the next session is better.
        I imagine it was awful to see someone you love so much doing so poorly

        Liked by 1 person

  7. this is just so much for you to deal with at once. I agree with what all of the others have said and and am here if you want to talk.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Laura says:

      Thank you. I’ve been reading all your posts in my inbox recently, and haven’t got around to leaving you my comments. But I wanted you to know I’ve been thinking of you and following all the stuff you’re dealing with too. Laura

      Liked by 1 person

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