Therapy. Ugh. What a stupid concept. Sit there and talk about my problems. Bleck. Who even does that? That’s stupid. Why should I pay someone to listen to me? Fuck that.
All thoughts I had for years. (Wait for the punchline guys, trust me.)
But really….it’s so much more than that.
My journey into the world of therapy began in high school. Guys, lets be real. I’m pretty fucking guarded. My life was (and is) full of pain and betrayals, I’ve got no reason why I should trust anyone on this planet. And I didn’t. But sometimes, you stick it out long enough to find those truly good people. Like…I feel like I can maybe trust you…? Let me test you and see who you really are.
I went through therapists like a kid goes through shoes. As soon as you buy them a pair, they’re ready for the next one. Seriously guys, I had no tolerance for therapists who thought I was full of shit, or didn’t take the time to understand me, or didn’t engage me and encourage me to talk, or just simply, the ones that were fine, I just didn’t connect with. There are so many reasons why you might not click, and that is so, so, so perfectly okay.
A social work intern at my high school in my junior year was the first “therapist” I really connected with. (Shout out to Andrea with blonde hair, I still remember you!) I really connected and bonded with her. And I am EXTREMELY fucking loyal. So like, once I decided I was okay with you and I could trust you, that’s it.
The only problem with Andrea was that she was just an intern, which meant once the school year was over, she was gone too. So, womp womp. That was rough, but I knew it was coming so I survived. I only knew her for a few months, but that experience showed me it was indeed possible for me to have that sort of connection with someone on a potentially therapeutic level.
From then on, it was a a shit show of trial and error (and error, and error, and error….) to find that connection again, to find someone even with just the potential to be a good fit for me.
I stuck it out with each of them for a few months, but nobody felt right. I didn’t connect with them, they weren’t understanding me, whatever the reason was, I just never felt good about it. Certainly not good enough to actually…whats the goal here? To be open and vulnerable? Trust them? Ew. Definitely not that. I’d probably been to about (and given an honest shot at) 10 different therapists between my high school and college years.
Fast forward to 2015. My family moved halfway across the country, I had left and been on my own for a bit, but decided to move and follow my parents.
Now, 2014 was, so far, my most painful year yet. (We’ll get into why soon enough.) So when I moved in 2015, I was just really struggling and thought I’d give this therapy thing one last try.
Guys. Sometimes, life just gives you a fucking break. In my case, exceptionally rarely, but holy shit. After years of failing to find someone I could trust enough to open up to, it took me one try here.
Finally, I found a therapist who I’m pretty sure is the perfect fit for me. A self proclaimed “asshole”, blunt, equally as sarcastic as me, calls me on my shit, isn’t going to fucking baby me (but empathetic and serious when it calls for it), it just worked.
IT’S BEEN 6 YEARS. This person has been putting up with me and my bullshit for 6 years now. I’ve known her longer than I’ve known my husband. We joke and say that if I had to choose between my husband or her, I’d pick her. He agrees. She’s been with me through a lot of shit, a lot of trauma, a lot of life. She’s just been there.
I’ll probably talk about my journey in therapy a lot, so buckle in.
Honestly, I really am a hot mess, and she’s kept me alive for a long fucking time. I’m still working on the “being vulnerable and open” part, but I’ll get there someday.
Don’t get me wrong, our relationship isn’t all sunshine and rainbows, we have our rough weeks. We have our ups and downs and like any relationship, it takes work. I just really see the value in doing the work and maintaining it.
Our journey is 6 years old, but it still feels new and scary. I don’t do vulnerable. I don’t like pain. I’d rather be numb. But I’ll tell you, going to her office twice a week, sitting across from her for those 3 hours a week, it feels like hope. It feels like I’m doing something. It feels like I’m working on myself.
Take the chance. Keep trying. I am so glad I did. I’m so glad I kept fighting for myself and didn’t give up, didn’t settle. I’m telling you, I wouldn’t be here.
It’s okay if it takes time, or if you feel like you’ll never find a connection. Don’t give up on yourself. You’re worth the fight.