I’ve recently been faced with the challenge of navigating divergent histories within a shared narrative.
It’s the reason I wonder what my ex-bestie tells people regarding our falling out; I have the feeling it’s something along the lines of, “I don’t know”, even though I made it extremely clear exactly why I was unsatisfied and unhappy in our friendship. It’s the same reason I suspect my mom tells people that we didn’t get along when someone asks if she has any kids, instead of “I hurt my son so much that he refuses to have anything to do with me”. Sure, each explanation might be close to the truth, but they’re far enough away from it that I’d consider each one a lie.
Continue reading “unreliable narrator”…
My therapist is still getting to know me. Now I have books to read and worksheets to fill out. It’s somewhat strange; I’ve been putting myself through self-help for years, but I’ve never traced it so far back to my childhood. I don’t like to blame my parents because I see how Darren and Pat have survived far “worse” but it’s getting more and more obvious that there’s trauma in my childhood that still affects me to this day.
- Apparently, I’m moderately depressed, and “moderate” is not normal.
- We’ve figured out that my unassertiveness is the result of conflict avoidance. Even if I practice a situation in my head where I say something that may bring up conflict, I often can’t follow through. I feel helpless to fix this, and this leads to a self-defeating attitude.
- This stems from my childhood. I’ve almost never argued with my parents (there were two times in my life I felt strongly enough to stand up against them, both ending in me submitting because there was no reasoning with them). I’ve always felt like I wouldn’t be loved unless I got good grades and did everything I was told. In other words, it was an extremely conditional love.
- This means I care about what people think of me, and I define or evaluate my self-worth through them. Knowing this pisses me off because philosophically and pragmatically I don’t agree, but can’t do anything about it.
- Every time I’ve been in therapy, I’ve cried at least once. This happens whenever I bring up specific aspects of my relationship with my parents.
- Hearing my therapist say, “Wow, that’s bad” brings me a comforting validation to what I feel.
- Aside from being slightly verbose, my therapist is great. He’s a non-judgmental, ethical, open-minded intellectual. He’s also a good listener.
It’s a full seven days between sessions, and at this point, my pschologist is just starting to know me. In between, I can never stop reflecting. I’ve always believed that I know myself well, but these sessions are probing ideas and memories I haven’t thought of in a while, and opening up completely new areas of reflection.
And while I could write for days about these thoughts and epiphanies, I simply don’t have the time, so I figured I’d briefly touch on them in point form.
- I need to respect my psychologist in order to accept help from him. i.e. If he was a Freudian and I was a Jungian, I wouldn’t be able to agree with any of his methods.
- I get very anxious when I’m in his office. This is because I don’t like to admit to myself that something’s wrong with me, but when I’m in there, it’s a very tangible reminder that I have mental problems.
- I’m very conflicted on several issues.
- I don’t want to lose my emotions because I need to suffer to create. Yet the emotions are bad enough that I don’t want to have them anymore (or have them in moderation at least).
- I want to love and be in a relationship, and at the same time I cling to being single because I’m scared of being hurt (in addition to the fact that the freedom is intoxicating). I do this by pushing others away from me or cutting them off.
- This stems from two significant childhood memories, where I felt betrayed in friendship, as well as my relationship with my parents.
- I want to be settled and have some stability (in terms of schedule, relationships, finances etc.), but the struggle to be settled is what makes me grow and be stronger.
- Many of these issues can only be resolved from decisions I should make. (i.e. No one else can make the decision for me)
- Turning to Taoism, which is very paradoxical in itself, has only helped so much.
- Without my creativity, or my desire to express myself, I’m nothing.
- I don’t want to “blame” my parents for confidence problems or perfectionist tendencies, but I’m slowly starting to find out that they’ve affected me even more than I thought before.
- As a hedonist, my greatest fear is losing my joie de vivre. If this happened (and it has once), I would consider killing myself. This is because the joys of life balance out all the bad and makes it worth living.
- I’m dependent on other people for happiness. I don’t see my friends often enough for me to be satisfied, and it’s a simple fact of life. They all have significant others, and I’m the only one left single. I don’t blame them for not spending enough time with me, but it makes me very sad.