50 Minutes of Therapy

[25/365] On the couch (Explored)

[25/365] On the couch (Explored) (Photo credit: pasukaru76)

Therapy.  A word the evokes different emotions.  For some it’s a warm feeling.  For others it instills fear.  For others it indicates weakness.

Therapy–the 50 minutes per week that a person might choose to spend with a social worker, psychologist or psychiatrist–isn’t a new concept.  It is, however, something not everyone is comfortable doing.

I have met a lot of people in my line of work:  those who don’t need therapy, those who need it and get it, those who need it and don’t get it (for various reasons).

Who admits they have gone to therapy?  The media makes it appear that everyone goes, especially if you live in New York City or Los Angeles.  But what about in Massachusetts, where I live?

Me.  I’ve done it.  I was hesitant at first, despite having friends and colleagues who ARE therapists.  I went later than I should have, in retrospect. But hey, at least I got my ass there, sat on the couch (chair) and used lots and lots of tissues.  There she was in front of me, a person I didn’t know much about (except what I saw in her online profile–yes, it’s like online dating, I know).  I didn’t even know she had kids until maybe 8 sessions in.  I still don’t know how many she has.  She was there because it was about me.  Just.  About.  Me.  When else do you get that kind of dedication from anyone in your life.  It’s customary, even with our BFFs to whine for a while but you’re SUPPOSED to ask THEM how THEY are doing at some point, right?  Not at therapy.  It’s all about you.  So freeing, really.

It’s also such hard work.  Yeah, you can cry and whine and use profanity all you want, but in the end you have to face your fears.  Figure out why you are sad, angry, depressed, unmotivated, insecure and whatever other emotion the talented therapist helps you identify.  The questions you are asked can be jarring.  Can’t I just explain it to you in the nice little package I’ve put together in my head and present that to you with a bow on top and you’ll tell me what to do?  Nope.

And the 50 minute thing.  It sucks.  It’s just enough time to really get deeply into one aspect of your issues and then they have to let you go.  I asked why it’s only 50 minutes when 90 seems better.  She said it’s because that’s how much insurance will cover.  I think it’s because a person can only take so much whining and crying in front of them before they need a break.  Plus they do have to pee at some point.  If they are really human, that is.

Did therapy help?  Hell yeah.  Did I stop going?  Yup.  Have I felt like I could go back since then?  Yup.  But then I felt better the next day.  I know what to look for, though, in myself.  And I’m not afraid of it.  I grew to enjoy it.  I learned so much about myself and those around me, too.

Have you experienced therapy?  Willing to share some nugget of wisdom you learned?  Or maybe a comment about what you got out of it?  Please comment below.

By the way, going to yoga also helped.  Just sayin’.

P.S.  If any of this resonates with you, please go ahead and be a gutsy mama and go.  Sign yourself up for therapy.  Need a referral, let me know.  I know lots of folks in that field (just one of them was mine, the rest I’ve met through my work).

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