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Thread: Anyone have experience with psychoanalytic therapy?

  1. #1
    Silver Member Pretzel's Avatar
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    Anyone have experience with psychoanalytic therapy?

    Hi everyone,
    I wanted to share something here that I wonder if anyone has opinions on - especially if you're either a therapist or patient in pyschodynamic or pyschoanalytic therapy, it would be great to hear from you. My current experience is that it's not working for me, and I wanted to explore the frustrations I have with it, and find out whether I'm the only one that feels this way or if there's something I'm doing wrong in terms of engagement or if it just needs more time. I have recently started therapy (about 4 months ago), and I don't feel it's been effective. My therapist hardly speaks, there are prolonged silences, I fill them, but I'm left wondering what my therapist thinks of what I said and where it's going, I feel every week things come out, and my therapist makes the odd link, but usually I feel he's really just reaching and taking really big leaps and I often don't agree with what he comes up with. There are very obvious formulaic things he says (relating most things back to my mother), and because I studied a foundation course in psychodynamic therapy, I cringe a little when he does all the formulaic things and the fact he never answers any of my questions ever and as a result comes across as non-human to me. A big part of why I'm frustrated is that I studied the foundation course in the hope that this could possibly be a career move for me, as i absolutely loved the foundation. But now in practice, with myself as patient, I've gotten very disillusioned with it all, and that makes me sad.
    I could go on with further examples of why I find the approach has not been effective. Most recently, I was disappointed to learn there is no cancellation policy AND that he wouldn't fit me in at another time to make up for it (given he charges anyway, no matter how much notice you give him). He told me (after i told him I was sick a couple of weeks ago) that he has no availability at any other time. Whereas at consultation, when he said he'd charge me anyway even if I'm sick or give notice, I asked as a compromise if we could find another time for the session to take place so my money is not wasted and he said yes. This didn't happen in practice. The following week, I decided to move on from this but he insisted we talk about it as the first time we exchanged text messages. And he was reading a lot into the whole exchange. Really, I was just frustrated that I'd wasted my money. But he was talking about the fact that it might mirror the relationship I have with my boyfriend because I expressed such high disappointed when I felt "Dropped".
    Is it me, or is this all very absurd?

  2. #2
    Platinum Member Wiseman2's Avatar
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    How did you come across this practitioner? Have you been evaluated by a physician to rule out underlying issues that may be treated with medication, lifestyle changes and supportive Cognitive Behavioral Therapy?

    Unfortunately it sounds like your goals in this were undefined and not met due to poor rapport, poor communication and lack of trust in this practitioner and this method. It's fine to move forward and get better second options and evaluations. However you need to define what's troubling you and what you hope to address, accomplish and improve upon. Therapy is not an internship in something you are flirting with as a profession.

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    Platinum Member DancingFool's Avatar
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    Disclaimer I don't know anything about the therapy.

    That said, so much raised an eyebrow here it's not even funny. It sounds like you have a therapist who is more interested in making money than his job of helping people. The last bit in particular.....your own therapist is gaslighting and manipulating you and blatantly so.

    It's not just you, it is absurd and highly concerning, alarming really. I'd drop him cold and find another therapist.

  4. #4
    Platinum Member reinventmyself's Avatar
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    I can only add that I was very fortunate to find a therapist that fit well for me. He was engaging and challenged me. I saw him for quite some time and then decided to take a break.

    A year later I wanted to return and seeing I could only see him after work, he didn't have any openings. He recommended an associate of his and as much as I liked her, our sessions felt flat in comparison and I didn't feel like I was getting anything out of it. I gave it several weeks and decided to end it.

    I don't doubt she would have been a fit for the next person, she just wasn't a good fit for me.

    I did have a couple opportunities to return to my original therapist at a later time and the comparison was pretty glaring.

    I think it's much like most relationships. Some fit, some don't.
    I wouldn't write off the whole process, but chalk up to needing to find someone better suited for you.

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  6. #5
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    It sounds like a bad fit between the two of you and he canít perform the duties youíd like him to in order to benefit from your sessions. Iíd try to find different doctor with whom you have a better rapport. Iíve never been in therapy, nor do I know much about it, but it sounds to me like probably neither one of you is in the wrong, it just isnít a fit.

  7. #6
    Platinum Member Jibralta's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by DancingFool
    It sounds like you have a therapist who is more interested in making money than his job of helping people. The last bit in particular.....your own therapist is gaslighting and manipulating you and blatantly so.
    I agree. I'm amazed that he tried to spin his own failure (to uphold his own word) into some failing on your part. I think this guy is a creep.

    I've actually had a lot of therapy. Probably six years' worth total, often multiple times per week when I was going

    I've personally found therapy to be effective, but I was also very invested in the process. I was pretty much hell-bent on exploring and resolving my own issues, no matter what the therapist said or did.

    Another thing: I've found that the therapist makes a difference. If I don't respect them, or if I feel that they don't respect me (or they're getting me wrong), I don't stick around. I've had two great therapists and two not so great therapists.

    I recommend trying it again, with a different therapist.

  8. #7
    Platinum Member ThatwasThen's Avatar
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    I agree with everyone and think you'd be doing yourself a favor by dropping this guy and finding yourself someone who you fit better with. To be honest, he sounds inept.

  9. #8
    Platinum Member catfeeder's Avatar
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    The therapist is supposed to work for you, not the other way around. You don't 'fail' therapy, but the wrong approach or therapist can fail you.

    Not every therapist will be a good fit, so fire the guy and find someone else to try out.


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