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shrinkykitten

"...another reason I'm intrigued with the hanged of Salem, especially the women, is that a number of them aroused suspicion in the first place because they were financially independent, or sharp-tongued, or kept to themselves. In other words, they were killed off for the same sort of life I live right now but with longer skirts and fewer cable channels." Sarah Vowell, The partly cloudy patriot.

1.25.2007

Some things that are vexing me...

1. A friend and I went to see David Eggers recently when he gave a reading of his new book. This was the first time this friend and I have hung out as a pair (we've usually had another friend with us). I wasn't happy at all with our interactions. At the beginning of the night she said something about not wanting to hear any pleas about "Africa guilt" during his talk, and that she would tune those out or something. Well, first, his book is about a survivor of one of the wars in Sudan, so that's kind of the point (to get people thinking about and concerned about issues in Africa). Secoond of all, that's part of why I wanted to go - because those issues are important to me. As we waited for the talk, she and I were talking, and she said something about being angry at her mom, and I said, "Oh, why?" and she said I didn't need to pretend to be her therapist. Ouch! The rest of our conversations just felt yucky - I felt dismissed, I felt as though my views were denigrated, and I felt as though she kept name-dropping and making a point to show me how much more she knew about everything than me. I didn't feel good by the end of the night at all.

The thing is, I like this person, and I can frame these things in a psychological interpretation that allows for empathy and understanding on my part - but at the same time, I feel badly about myself when I am with her. She called yesterday and left a message asking if I wanted to do soemthing tomorrow. And I am torn.

2. C'trix left a comment about Obama's arrogance - and something about when I met him has been rattling around my head that really seems to validate this. When I met him, I noticed he seemed very very interested in talking with young people (late teens, early twenties) and was extremely disengaged with anyone outside of that age group. When I actually met him, he only asked my name, didn't ask anything else about me. However, with all of the younger people, he asked if they were students, what they were studying, where they went to school, etc. I found myself not appreciating this at all. I'm still a voter. I am also a blogger. I was at the time a student. I think I am a good demographic to play to. Even if I weren't, I think anyone who has shown up specifically to meet him and has waited hours to do so still deserves at least some feigned interest.

3. As mentioned in my liveblogging of the State of the Union, I submitted two questions to Clinton's live chats. I tried to watch the first live chat, but had far too many technical issues to do so. This annoyed me. I then read the transcript of it and the other two after the fact as I didn't feel like futzing with it. She didn't answer my questions, and I feel a little disappointed about that. I had asked for her thoughts on Darfur and what she would do about genocides if she were elected, and I also asked about what her plans were to deal with issues related to women (aside from reproduction issues). I'm not sure how they chose the questions that were answered, but it felt like they were repetitive.

4. One of the things I liked most about Jim Webb's rebuttal to the state of the union address was when he commented on Bush's noting that the economy is so much better, and Webb said something like, "we must be living in two different countries." I don't know what it is about politicians addressing social issues that is so soothing to me, but it is. I feel calmed inside when I feel like a politician gets the social realities and addresses the huge discrepancies between the rich and the not-rich, and addresses issues that face those of us without trust funds and silver spoons.

5. Although I am happy that Bush is thinking about healthcare, there are many reasons why his current proposal is idiotic. I don't know much about his proposal of where the money to fund this will come from, but I understand that in and of itself is hugely problematic. But for me, the issues I see are twofold: tax breaks likely won't actually increase rates of health insurance and private health insurance is a headache.

First, if I get a 7500 tax break, that money will more than likely not go to buying myself some health insurance. It wouldn't free up monies to pay for insurance, and it would not make me more likely to purchase it. People who can't afford health insurance have many pressing financial issues, and I'm sure health insurance feels kind of like a luxury. Second, if you have ever looked into health insurance, it is a huge headache. There are so many plans with so many permutations (i.e., 3 gazillion different blue cross plans), and so many things to consider: co-pays, caps, premiums, limits on who you see, deductibles, preexisting conditions, etc. It is also hard to find out which is the best insurance given that plans differ so based on where you live, and demographics. It is also embarassing to ask for help if you are wanting to see if something specific is covered. For example, if I want to ensure I get good mental health coverage, I would be embarassed to ask the insurer about that specifically, and it is hard to find specific information on what is covered and for how long (I don't want to pay $200 premium a month for mental health coverage that that has a $2000 deductible, has a $20 co-pay, and that only covers 20 sessions a year - I might as well pay out-of-pocket). It's just too confusing to navigate!

6. Last night on Jon Stewart, someone said something about Hillary Clinton being the next president of the US. It was a joke - but boy did hearing that give me chills. I would love to see a woman be president in a way I cannot even explain.

7. I failed to notice at the time of his speech (but noticed last night when part of it was replayed on Jon Stewart) that Bush, when introducing Nancy Pelosi as the first woman Speaker of the House, said that he was the "first President" to be able to announce a female speaker. That annoyed me - it made it seem as though he had done something to bring that about - as though he gets some prestige and makes history himself for this. Asshat.

8. I saw my new therapist for the third time this week. She began the session by noting that she wanted to make sure that therapy went at my speed and didn't want to push me to talk or disclose things before I was ready. When she said that at the beginning I was a little confused as to why she said it (our first two sessions were "history gathering" sessions, and I did my best to answer all of her questions - I felt like I was really trying to talk and tell her what she wanted to know). At about the middle of the session, she then said she felt "stuck" because she wanted to respect my pacing, and wanted to not push me to disclose before I was ready. Because she used the word "stuck" (session 3, by the way, is very early to feel "stuck" as a shrink), and because she repeated the issue of pacing and my opening up - I started to feel self-conscious and a little badly. Near the end of the session, she repeated this all again. At that point, I felt very self-conscious, very badly, very concerned about *why* she kept saying this, and concerned that she might not be patient enough to wait for me to let her in.

For me as a shrink, I usually figure it will take many sessions (up to 20) to get a good handle on the client and to develop a good enough rapport that the client can take more risks in trusting me. But, I think I also (because of how I work) don't really expect my clients to be completely open and forthcoming in early sessions. I expect them to unfold at their own pace and to let me in at a rate that feels okay to them.

With this shrink, the process has been a little hard as I came into in in a very bad place. However, she wanted to spend our first three sessions asking questions and getting information - whereas I wanted help in maybe feeling a little better (as in supported) so that I could navigate the job search stuff and at least not get any more depressed. We also had 2 weeks between our first and second sessions - so there was a break there. I also, I think because of how distressed I was in our first session, didn't ask her questions about her work as a therapist in our first session, so I didn't really have a chance to hear her talk about herself as a shrink or watch how she handled those questions. Usually that is helpful for me in ascertaining what the shrink is like.

So, now I'm worried that she might not be a good match. And the problem is, I don't really want to (nor can I afford to) go and pay for a session to sort this through. She has also been late every single session, which annoys me (she does make up the time, but I feel like that decreases my control over the time and over what happens in therapy as I don't know exactly when we will end). If I could easily afford therapy, or if it were covered by insurance or something, I would definitely go back and talk to her about these things. But I need groceries more than I need to discuss this. I left her a phone message, so I'll see what happens.

9. I bought two wool sweaters at a thrift store to take home and felt to make into hats and mittens. When I got them home, I ended up liking them too much to felt and cut them up. This is annoying! One sweater (I am wearing it right now) doesn't fit well (too huge), it is extremely unflattering, yet I cannot bear to cut it up as it is warm, long, and cozy (it's a medium grey men's cardigan). I decided I wanted to make a faux fur hat, and rather than buying fabric, I am considering cutting up a thrift store coat that I never wear. It is too big - but it is a deep raspberry faux fur, and so it is super duper cute. So, on the one hand, I never wear it, but on the other, I *might* and it seems a shame to cut it up (esp. if my pans end up not working out well).

Does someone want to come over and help me decide what to keep, what to toss, and what to make into something else?

10. I had a dream the other night that Lucy and I made plans for her to come here to go see a movie with me. It made me happy!

2 Comments:

At 3:43 PM, Blogger Eddie said...

Yay for Jim Webb! (I got to vote for him, you know.) :D

 
At 6:19 PM, Blogger Lucy said...

I want to come over and help sort your cool clothes! (or see a movie :) )

I'm sorry you ended up feeling bad with your friend. It's frustrating when you like someone, but can't enjoy spending time with them. I have a friend kind of like that at home. Actually, another friend used to be like that, but now that I've known her longer it seems more obvious that she doesn't at all mean things the way I first interpreted them, so I can enjoy her company more. I hope you have people you can have fun with, anyway.

I hope the therapist works out, too.

 

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