I recently restarted therapy, and I'm finding myself quickly approaching a problem I've had with therapy in the past. Suggestions and commiseration would be welcome. You are also welcome to just armchair feelings.
I haven't been in a number of years, but bearddamnheroes has been pushing me to start again. Thing is, I often find therapy helpful for a little while, and then I stagnate. I start dragging myself to therapy as a routine, not really getting much out of it, stressing about what I can possibly come up with to discuss, worrying about wasting everyone's time. Eventually I come up with some sort of excuse to break up with my therapist (which I tend to feel really guilty about, and try to do in such a way as to not hurt the therapist's feelings...).
I've only been back in therapy about two months now, and I'm starting to feel myself hitting that wall. I was particularly interested in going to this psychologist because her website was all about CBT, and finding specific strategies to deal with problems. I figured that might be more helpful than the general talk therapy I've done in the past. And in many ways, it has been. We've discussed several big problems I've been having, and we've developed methods to deal with them.
At the moment, going to appointments has primarily felt like a way of forcing me to keep up with our previously-discussed strategies. "Ugh, I have to do that thing before my next appointment, because she's going to ask me if I did." But beyond that, I don't have much more to bring up. And she has a tendency to wait, and ask me things like "what else would you like to discuss today?" And I get uncomfortable and stare into space for a while, and tell her, "Um. I don't know?" I'm starting to find myself looking forward to her going on maternity leave in a few weeks, because it will give me an excuse to stop going.
She has encouraged me to start seeing a psychiatrist for the first time in my life. Despite the fact that I've been on and off antidepressants for over a decade, I've never seen one before. "But bigdamnheroes," you might say, "Shouldn't antidepressants be prescribed and monitored by a psychiatrist?" And to that I say, "What are you, my mom?" Psychiatrists kinda freak me out. I don't trust them. I expect them to be cold drug-pushers and generally disinterested in actually learning about me and what I need in terms of treatment. I don't have justification for this belief beyond various sources of anecdata over the years.
So. I saw the psychiatrist that my psychologist recommended. She was ok, and definitely not what I expected. If anything, she was less interested in discussing my prescription than I wanted her to be. She mostly wanted to hear all about my childhood, and told me I should be sleeping and exercising more. I did disagree rather strongly with several of her conclusions drawn from the stories I told her (nope, I don't think my mom is awful for paying more attention to my actively suicidal sister than my vaguely-depressed-but-putting-on-a-strong-front self). But ultimately it was only one meeting, and she just doesn't know me very well yet.
I think one of my biggest problems, and this is probably going to make me sound like a total egotistical asshole, is that I have a tendency to feel like I'm smarter than my therapist. I feel like they rarely tell me things I don't already know (though sometimes it helps to have someone emphasize the point anyway). Though I will say, one of the best therapy experiences I've had was with this totally wacky "holistic healer" about a year or so ago. She said some things to me that were so off-the-wall that it forced me to really look at some things differently. (Oh, I'm holding onto the ghost of my great-grandfather who committed suicide? You're going to exorcise him from me? Ok...)
This has been a weird stream-of-consciousness post. Thoughts?