Therapists are awfulsome. And yes, I know I just invented that word, deal with it while I explain the awfulsomeness of therapists (spell check is really going to hate me today).
In my therapy session yesterday, I was talking about how I reacted to a certain situation with someone from my past. My therapist stopped me and said, “do you know why you reacted that way?”
“No, do you?” I shot back.
“Well I don’t want to give you any ideas,” she answered. What the hell? Isn’t that why I (and by “I” I mean my insurance) pay you so much money? I mean, if you break your leg and go to the doctor they aren’t going to look at the x-ray and say, “hmm, and do you know why your leg hurts?” Probably because any doctor who does that is getting punched, or at least they would get punched if that broken leg wasn’t slowing you down. But therapists do this shit all the time. And this is why therapists are awful.
Yet in the example above, if you break your leg, you know there is a pretty big fucking problem. You don’t need to figure it out. Comparatively, the insidious thing about mental illness is that it can lie to you, convincing you that you are the problem, not some chemical imbalance in your brain, and that you are just broken, with no hope of getting better. It can be a constantly moving target, like if your broken leg suddenly turned into a broken arm or something.
In reality, mental illness is a battle with demons that happens inside your head, a war waged on a daily basis. There is no x-ray, blood test, or physical test that will reveal it, nor is there a cast to be signed when it is all said and done. Therapists can’t “fix” you in the way you set a broken bone. Rather they give you the weapons to fight your fight, the tools that will give you the ability to win more good days. And when you show up to the therapist after getting the shit kicked out of you by your mental illness, winning more good days is amazing, even if they do it by only asking annoying questions that you don’t know how to answer. And that is why therapists are awesome.
So, yes. Therapists are absolutely fucking awfulsomely awfulsome.