Dr C has never held a conversation with me since she joined the therapy group three months ago. I’ve tried to engage with the coldness several times, but it’s difficult to connect with a Therapist who appears distant and downright friggin rude at times.
If I’m trying to interact with someone, but there’s a distance in the dynamics, the experience can transport me back to childhood where I regress within that same sense of exclusion I felt as a child. This has taken me years to understand and I want to stand up against it rather than sink into one of those detached silent episodes.
I already talked about this in the group last week, including how I feel about this odd character, Dr C, but it evidently made little difference. Just because she triggers something from my narcissistic upbringing, doesn’t mean to say she’s not being a snotty cow.
Yes, Cat was sharpening his claws on Friday and that little bit of agitation can feel like the last straw to a mountain of supressed anger from the past. My focus was on Dr C, but she was still looking downwards, even after I started to speak.
Me: “When we enter this therapy room on a Friday, our Therapist, Frankie, welcomes everyone with a smile while you, Dr C, sit there with your head almost between your knees, I often wonder if you’re actually sucking your toes down there.” I have her attention now.
Frankie: Her small stature shifts uncomfortably in the seat. “Yes, but remember we talked about what this represents for you, Cat… the distance, your parents…and how that causes you to retreat.”
Dr C: Mumbles beneath a large hand, now covering half her face, only the eyes are visible and she’s beginning to creep me out. Her English is perfect, but it sounds like she has a sweaty sock stuffed in her mouth. “Yez, go von,” she says in a very neutral-I-don’t-care-tone, which only riles me further.
Me: “The distance I sometimes feel in this room may well remind me of my parents, but your face is still on the floor and it’s rude. I try to feel some sort of connection, but I only seem to hit a frosty front and it’s difficult to find trust in there.”
Dr C: Says nothing, her eyes in a Therapist squint, searching for a deeper meaning within me, but I am adamant that she needs to own part of this.
A couple of other group members shared similar experiences, so it was a relief to realise this is not just my perception. While they talked, I was fighting to compose the misplaced anger.
Me: “When I shared during check-in this morning, you didn’t look at me once, it’s not the first time, and I feel you must have some sort of problem with me…”
I wasn’t looking for their feedback, just as well because I didn’t get any. Nothing could change what I said… actions speak louder than words. Dr C was a little vague, “Maybe you have a point.”
The most important thing for me is that I was honest and my self-esteem is no longer at risk of suffocating in silence. Who cares what the snotty cow thinks.