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Coach Jen K.
Coach Jen K., LCSW, CPC
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1812
Experience:  Licensed Master Social Worker. Certified Life Coach
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I had been in therapy for several years with the same therapist.

Resolved Question:

I had been in therapy for several years with the same therapist. I am a therapist myself.Recently, he made responses to me about my mother that were inconsistent with anything he had ever said before. He did not seem to be listening, when I told him I had forgiven my brother for raping me. Coming to this point should have been a landmark cause for celebration, but my therapist was very uninvolved when I said this to him.

A former client of my therapist took up office hours in his suite, with very little warning. I should have never known of her existence except that the three of us worked together in a ministry to suicide survivors at my home church. During that time, the woman edged her way into working with the group of people she wanted to have, a I lost my opportunity to observe my therapist in a group setting.

The week she took up office hours, I saw her in the waiting room, following my session. She was cold and unreceptive to my attempts at polite conversation.

I cried in front of my therapist. I asked him why he did not tell me. I wondered why he left weeks go by, knowing he would be working with her, and said nothing, but simply allowed it all to just drop on my head. I wrote him a letter, thanking him for everything he had done for me, trying to get away gracefully. My husband has had to pick up the pieces. I am grieving.

One of the most hurtful things that happened, even though he apologized on the spot for hurting me deeply, was that he said the woman, a much younger person than I, had passed through a spiritual door that I had not yet found. He said she had come through the process much more quickly than I and that her training was better than mine. Perhaps these things may be true, but I am left here hurting and not sure where to go with the unhappy feelings this has generated for me. He also told me I was competitive. When the woman wanted to work with a certain group of people, I immediately consented, to keep the peace. My family finds the charge of competitiveness absurd and totally foreign to my nature.

I felt demeaned, because when I expressed my frustration and anger at him for doing this and being covert about it, he said that he had been sure there was more anger inside of me that needed to come out. But I was angry at him, not about the past.

I had actually said to him some time before this, that I felt it was the time to put the anger aside and come to terms, accepting what had happened to me, and move on into a productive life, serving others, writing, and counseling. He did not seem to be able to hear this. He further demeaned me by saying that I was "scratching at the door" that day, the day that he had told me the other woman had passed through already.

I am in grief, looking to see my therapist in places where he might be possibly, shopping, etc. I have had my husband tell him I am taking a break from our sessions. Have you any wise counsel? I am going on, with a heavy and sad heart.

ept
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 2 years ago.

CoachJenK :

Hi. Welcome. I am a Licensed Master Social Worker with more than 20 years experience working with individuals and families on a variety of issues.

CoachJenK :

I am sorry to hear of this but i must say it seems as if his boundaries are a bit diffuse and this has caused you much hurt.

CoachJenK :

Your feelings and reaction to it all are completely normal and I am sad to hear of the pain this has caused.

CoachJenK :

This is your therapy with him and having a triad now with this woman in the office makes it extremely difficult for boundaries to be maintained, but in order for you to feel safe you need those boundaries and it is up to him to keep them.

CoachJenK :

Your feelings of transference are also normal which is why you are looking to see him in various places out in the world.

CoachJenK :

But we cannot let this experience be a replication of past hurt and abuse that you have suffered.

CoachJenK :

I know you may not be ready right now to get back into therapy with someone, but I would suggest that sometime soon you think of doing so in order for all of this to be processed.

CoachJenK :

I see you are offline. I will wait for you to come online so we can chat further.

Customer:

All three of us are Christian. I know we are supposed to be tenderhearted and forgive one another. Our willingness to forgive is in view as a measure of how much we are aware of our own forgiveness from God. I believe I am forgiving him for not handling this with honor. I am just so stunned that he has not called to try to work things out and get back on the right path together. The thought of paying him high fees and submitting to his leadership, while we undo the mess he has created, is less than appealing. I feel if I go back, I might be slapped again. And while I must forgive, I am not even sure he owns his responsibility in this matter.

Customer:

Sometimes I feel I ought to go back and just try to talk it out, but I do not think I am the one who should do the talking or initiating. I do not want to spend the rest of life waiting for him to do what what I would like him to do, which is, pick up the phone and try to find a way back to a decent, respectable relationship. He may well be fearful of my husband's anger at him for having done this.

CoachJenK :

i will e back at m computer in a hlf hour. can you wait for m?

Customer:

It is crushing to hear you have been compared to another who is now out of therapy. The insult of hearing about the other woman's training being superior is stinging. I had long ago faced that I would not be sharing his office, and I now work from my home, for low wages, in a church community. I have a viable ministry to abused women.

Customer:

I can come back at 8 pm Can you?

Customer:

I'll check back at 8. Thank you.

CoachJenK :

Yes perfect.

CoachJenK :

It is completely crushing and inappropriate for him to have compared you.


 

Customer:

I know, it is ridiculous. I wanted to have gone out with his blessing, and now this has happened. Unfortunately, there is, as you know, an emotional bond. We had been in therapy for eight years.

CoachJenK :

yes and that is why it stuns me that he would behave in this manner. I do believe that some closure with him would be helpful for you to move on.


 

Customer:

I am highly functional, but lived in a home with several people who are way outside the parameters of normal: sociopathic borderline, and sexual deviance, drugs, blah blah blah.....I can become paranoid, but have learned good monitoring skills, I do suffer from some PTSD, but it well under control, again I can read my signals well and so can my mate, and I live in a stable environment, great husband and kids. Paranoid Schizophrenia runs through my family, we are aware, and I am not medicated, neither diagnosed, but just aware of what is in our history and very watchful of mostly learned patterns of thinking. Nothing that would disqualify me from being a helper to other needy people, but enough suffering to be able to empathize and console and guide. Both of my parents were way out there and so was my brother, aunt, and several grand parents..... O wow!

Customer:

What would you suggest? Do you think initiating a time to talk would be appropriate? My counselor may be afraid to contact us, since he was stung some time ago by another woman who filed sexual harrassment charges against him. I sometimes think the only way that contact could occur is if I initiate it myself.

CoachJenK :

I do believe that a session of closure would be good.


 

Customer:

My husband feels that D. has probably not given this a second thought, but simply gone on with things, and that is a hurting thought. This man is the first man I ever fully connected with and then I experienced a great healing and benefit in my marriage, and recovered far beyond what D. thought could happen. It is very painful to be in such a funk, and I feel that I am approaching the zone where others might say, "Just get over it".

CoachJenK :

It will help you to heal and grow from the experience.


 

Customer:

And then, but this would be really hard, I thought I might ask him, humbly, what it is that he means by this spiritual door. He might really clobber me with that one.

CoachJenK :

This is more about his boundaries


and how he stepped over them.

Customer:

My first response was pain, then anger then I ran away from him.

CoachJenK :

all of that is normal...your reaction but now you are in pain that is interfering with other aspects of your life and processing this with him will be a step toward healing it.


 

Customer:

Yes I know that although it is not in the line items of the codes of ethics, that it dances closely along the lines of ethics violations. I am painfully aware of the seriousness of what he has done. He has managed to mangle me and nearly undo what work we did those years together. I love this man very much and he has been a total jerk.

CoachJenK :

things got muddy for sure. but now it is time for you to walk tall and begin your healing


 

Customer:

How should I begin this? My family is Sicilian and there are no models in our life to look to . Everyone who offends is simply forever wiped out (ignored and vilified forever).

CoachJenK :

book the session with him and let it be all about you and your feelings and how you feel and get some closure that it is time now to move on from this relationship.


 

Customer:

I have forgiven him, but I do not not really know how to process this with him.How much can he be relied upon to facilitate this process? What if he acts like an idiot and holds that it is all my problem?

CoachJenK :

there is that risk based on his previous behavior so it must be a risk you are willing to take if you see him and if you cant then that is okay too and you rely on yourself to move through this space of grief.


 

Customer:

I am a believer in reconciliation and know that in some cultures when there is offense the parties meet until all grievances have been aired and there is peace. I have seen pictures of people who fought one another in war sitting smoking pipes together.

CoachJenK :

ok well I believe you can make the choice as to how you want to proceed or not with him. It is about you and what you need.


 

Customer:

I am not really sure what it is that I want from him. It is very disappointing that he seems to not care. I would be silling to take the risk to find out if he really did care or not. His actions are a terrible ending to what should have ended very well.

CoachJenK :

this is a therapeutic relationship and he has helped you but sometimes even those relationships


run its course.

Customer:

and some therapists are not the greatest at bringing things to a close, so maybe I need to help myself and rely on inner strength and spiritual helps to get through

CoachJenK :

that is an option too as I mentioned above.


 

CoachJenK :

You have those skills so rely on them


 

Customer:

I have been doing well at it. Today is a bad day, some tears. Do you have anything else to add that would be helpful? Just for so, since you are on the outside, what would you do if you found yourself in a ridiculous situation like this?

CoachJenK :

If it were me, I would schedule the session to express MY feelings and then to let him know i was moving on from that relationship.


 

Customer:

My last questions are about how to conduct myself in the meeting, what may happen in a meeting like this, how much healing may or may not take place in such a meeting and over time, and anything else you want to add before we say good night. You have been very kind.

CoachJenK :

conduct yourself as you always do. i truly cant predict how it will go but the meeting is for you and your healing and your closure. The healing will come over time and hopefully you can gain some peace starting with the meeting.


 

CoachJenK :

The last thing I want to add is that to keep the loving and open heart that you have.


 

CoachJenK :

Sometimes God puts people in our lives for a reason and just for a time in order to help us with what we need and now God may be saying you can continue to grow on your own.


 

Customer:

Thank you. I must talk to him so that I do not become bitter. I am going on alone. I just did not think it would happen this way, but it is do-able. All is broken here on earth. It was hard to see him make this nasty blunder, wallow in it, put it on me and walk away. It was hard to let him be human and not superman. Blessings to you. L.

CoachJenK :

blessings to you. Please take a moment to click on the rating tab to offer a rating of my work. My goal is excellent. Thank you in advance.


 

Coach Jen K., LCSW, CPC
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1812
Experience: Licensed Master Social Worker. Certified Life Coach
Coach Jen K. and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Hi Coach JenK

Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 2 years ago.
Hi Linda. Welcome back. Please tell me how you are doing?
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

I am coming back in to let you know that I have ended my relationship with D. My husband had gone to see him and speak with him about how we might be able to make it possible for me to finish up whatever work D. still felt I needed to accomplish there.


 


During the visit, D. told Chuck that he and E. had a very special kind of connection with one another. He also said that he felt close to her.


 


It became clear during their meeting that it would be best to just get out of the way and leave things in God's hands. D. said that I had spoken rudely to him at a luncheon we had attended with some other counselors. The truth is that at the luncheon, he became upset because he wanted to conduct a debriefing session and could not get us women stopped talking. I was the last one who said anything, he was looking at me when he lost his temper, and another woman owned fully that she had asked me a question. This is playing in his mind as me being disrespectful and rude, but it was another woman who responded; she, like I, was embarrassed and taken by surprise at his brusque and impatient demeanor.


 


So, he either does not remember well or lied, and threw me under the bus in front of my husband, who clearly remembered the incident.


 


So, I am sad, but no longer rollercoastering and hoping for things that are not there, have disappeared, or were never there. If transference explodes it is less than pleasant.

Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 2 years ago.
I am proud of the work you have done around this. His behavior seems completely inappropriate and I believe you will make better strides with out him. Things got very muddy and that is not supposed to happen.

Your husband sounds wonderful that he went in to advocate for you. Do the work you need to and if you desire to find someone else when you are ready to dip your toe back in the water, I am all for it. That was your place to feel safe and I am sorry it was not that for you.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you. The day I ended things with a brief letter, I received very unexpectedly several new clients and students, and quite a few Bible verses of encouragement came to mind. That week several of the people I serve moved forward and it was a very rewarding time.


 


I asked you, another male counselor, my husband, and also one of my children, who happens to be a counselor, about this problem. All of you concurred that it was correct to get away, the sooner the better. Usually one counselor is enough and proper, but I felt a need to check with people of both sexes. All were quite clear about what needed to be done.


 


I also sent a few emails, about how my emotions were so overloaded by what was happening. So, I think I have gotten it all out, at least as much as D. needs to hear from me.

Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 2 years ago.
I am glad to be in the company of the other wonderful people in your life in terms of our opinions lining up.

It is interesting that all of these wonderful things transpired for you once you released the energy around him and let yourself move on.

Keep moving forward, focusing on you and your wonderful work with others.

You have many blessings, Linda.
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Yes, I do.... Now to put to work the counsel I have been giving to clients these past years. (Tee Hee)


 


I'm focusing on the present, even to the point of making a list of things to attend to each day, so as not to be overtaken by blocks of time that are spent wishing D would be something or somebody he apparently is not or can't be. Most days are good, and I think I am coming up, although there seem to be pockets of depression like feelings. But on the whole it is good. Energy spent there means I am missing out n something else.


 


Thanks for helping on this. I am glad you have helped.


 


 


 


 

Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 2 years ago.
It is my pleasure to be a support for you. I am here anytime you need. Keep your forward motion...it looks good on you!!!
Coach Jen K., LCSW, CPC
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1812
Experience: Licensed Master Social Worker. Certified Life Coach
Coach Jen K. and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you! Have a great night!

Expert:  Coach Jen K. replied 2 years ago.
And you as well.

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Coach Jen K.
Coach Jen K.
Social Worker, Professional Coach
648 Satisfied Customers
Licensed Master Social Worker. Certified Life Coach