been going to psychotherapy for almost three years now and have finally broken
through some of the biggest barriers I had in place to protect myself. I
was raped and sexually abused when I was 12 and had kept it under
wraps for over 17 years. Now that the door has been opened I am in
crisis mode, barely maintaining a functional level at work and home. On top
of all this, my psychotherapist just told me he is quitting his practice
in less than one month. I am scared because it takes me a long time to trust
people and now I feel like Im being left behind when I need him most.
I am trying to be rational about it, that it is his job, not his life, but
that only goes so far. How do I deal when he has been the only one I would
talk to about this sensitive stuff the past few months?
Yes, it is a loss, its deeply troubling, and it leaves
you feeling very uncertain about the future. Still, you have only one option,
aside from just returning to the past and keeping everything under
wraps again: find another psychotherapist and continue the process
of your healing.
Keep in mind
here a very special principle of psychotherapy: You dont speak about
your past so that your psychotherapist can understand what happened; you
speak to hear yourself speaking the truth about your life.
doesnt really matter if the course of your psychotherapy involves only
one or several psychotherapists. What does matter is that in the process
of the psychotherapy you become so familiar with and so understanding of
your pain that you also become immune to its shame. Eventually, you will
consider your past
traumas to be just
bare facts that you can remember objectively. You can look at them without
hidden resentments, without
anger, without a
thirst for blame or revenge.
When that happens,
you will be able to look anyone right in the eyes and, without even blinking,
say honestly and
compassionately, I was raped and sexually abused when I was 12. It
crippled me for many years, but I dealt with it, and the pain no longer holds
Then you will
know that you have been healed.
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