DEAR ADELE

013

I haven’t sent this yet. I can sometimes be too blunt and harsh. If others with softer souls have suggestions to improve it, you are welcome to share.  It’s more likely I won’t send it at all and just needed to express my feelings. I may just cancel. I tend to speak up quietly by not exposing myself further to that which turns out to be more hurtful than helpful. 

Dear Adele,

You had said in our first meeting that you wanted to know if I’m in disagreement about something. Of course the reason I am there is because my voice was stolen a long time ago and it is one of the things broken I cannot get back. So being asked to do something I am unable to do, and is the basis for needing therapy, is not doable. But I did say I’d try.

In our last meeting, which I cannot call a session, I felt like a by-stander or as if I’d just stopped by to say hi and have coffee. You seemed to create your own chaos since you drove off the premises to buy yogurt when you knew you had an appointment even if they were late.

You are doing exactly what a previous therapist had done, leaving me sitting alone in your office, as he did, except you weren’t answering a phone call you were getting a treat for you dog. I don’t know which is worse, but both are unacceptable and inexcusable. That is not OK with me. I am not a friend stopping by sitting at your kitchen table. I expect at $120 a visit, unless an emergency has occurred, that a therapist is ready to work. If not, call to cancel, or apologize when I arrive and re-schedule.

I felt as if I had to keep bringing you back to the reason I’m there which it to work on my issues. Many precious minutes were wasted while I watched you play with your dog and listened about your past skating, singing, performing and surgeries. If brought up in context to a point being made that would be helpful but I don’t see how hearing all these details about you were advancing the therapeutic process.

You have helped me through a bad time, and I thank you for that. I would like to know you are there in the future if the need arises because when I was in such deep pain and confusion you were on tract and phenomenal. But I need that each time. I need to feel assured you are able to be ready and present, not playing with you dog or inserting extraneous information unrelated to the work I need to do.

I do not feel I need the next appointment we scheduled.  

Patricia

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19 thoughts on “DEAR ADELE

  1. So sorry to hear of your experience. How frustrating to have to jump a hurdle to face a mountain! Your letter is straightforward and honest (not harsh) and I believe stuck to the heart of the issue. Her response could let you know if you are with the right therapist. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I feel like this is perfect. Straightforward, to the point, and all about feedback. I left many a therapist who had boundary issues without addressing it and wish I had done so at the time because I feel it would help them grow (if they were willing) and at the very least provide me closure.

    You have every right to send that and I think it is wonderful you have asserted yourself. It is your truth – and you do not need to fear being blunt – it was reasonable, and you are not responsible for her feelings or response.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thank you Loretta. I have such great respect for you.
      Your advice is spot on. You stopped me from making what would have been a very big mistake with Stevie. I can still remember it, “Absolutely not!” when I was going to offer unsolicited advice. (as if I knew anyway)

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I think you should send it. I believe that sending it will be a great oportunity for you to empower yourself and speak up. The letter/email is great and you haven’t said anything wrong. In fact you have said exactly what a counselor should be doing (especially at $120 an hr!) Her role in that moment isn’t to have a chat with you, her role is to support you. As someone who is in counselling I would be horrified if my counsellor did this.
    Also speaking up as soon as it happens makes your voice more powerful and effective. I wish you all the best 🌼

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, she didn’t apologize. She kept saying how people aren’t perfect and that days like this happen. When I came home and especially when sleep wouldn’t come, I thought about the fact that no apology was forthcoming…just excuses, defending and doggie playtime.

      Like

  4. I agree with the others. Send the letter. It is honest, clear, your points are valid and expectations reasonable. You deserve therapy for the money you pay….your therapeutic relationship shouldn’t be treated as a friendship that she gets paid for.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I am so glad you sent it and asserted yourself. It was not blunt at all, you told her how it felt for you and even thanked her for her other sessions. It is a very constructive letter and your clarity and honesty shines through. Very brave and so you should be very proud of yourself 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  6. It’s a huge bummer that she would behave like this in a session. But you turned it into an achievement for you. You recognized that it wasn’t a good situation, and you protested–not in a harsh way, but in a clear and straightforward way. This is a really big deal. Years ago, I started working with a therapist like this. She was incredibly disorganized, talked too much, and wasted the very expensive session time. I often left seething but was too afraid to speak up about it. It probably took me a couple of months to stop going, even though it wasn’t working. I think you can be really proud of yourself for speaking up about your needs and how she didn’t meet them. I hope she responds well.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. It’s been five days since I emailed her so my guess is that won’t be a response…which says a lot about what kind of person she is, and what kind of character she possesses…Neither at the caliber that I really need.

      Like

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