Why go to a psychologist: support vs frustration

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Why go to a psychologist: support vs frustration

Visiting Trendy-U Lilia Kim, writer, screenwriter of cinema and tv, wga wes

From time to time I get noticed in discussions like “I have been going to the therapist for three years, nothing has changed in my life. Our therapists do not know how to do anything, as in America – as Lilya Kim writes – there is a whole team of them ”.

Sometimes I keep reading to understand which expectations of a person have been violated. And most often the wording is broad and boundless: to improve personal life, increase income, improve health. From the fact that a person went to a therapist for three years, I remind you.

An American therapist (they do not always work as a team – I had a program for correcting complex PTSD + post-bariatric observation, so they are so dumb with both protocols) at this moment would ask to specify each item. And at first I worked with expectations.

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“What exactly do you mean by“ improved personal life ”?

An American therapist would not start doing anything without agreeing with the client about realistic, concrete, measurable expectations. What particular door, what wonderful garden, does this particular Alice want to crawl through at the present moment in time? (the image from “Alice in Wonderland” – where she wanted to get into a beautiful garden, but was either too big or too small for the door to it).

Quote from Alice in Wonderland.  She opened the door and saw a very narrow hole behind it ... Alice knelt down and looked into it - in the depths there was a garden of amazing beauty.  Oh, how she wanted to get out of the dark room and wander between bright flower beds and cool fountains!  But she could not even stick her head into the hole.  - If my head and went, - thought poor Alice, - what's the point!  Who needs a head without shoulders?

About “personal life” I would find out to the utmost specifics – that it is difficult to go on dates and meet with someone, because the client lives with a mother who cheats him / her every time she prepares and intimidates with the consequences after returning. To bring someone home is impossible even to think, and if you stay somewhere overnight – mother’s saw is accelerated to lamentations about how unhappy her abandoned grandchildren will be. And the general wording “personal life will improve” – ​​turns into a specific one: we must be determined to move out of the mother, both physically and psychologically – and not bend over to her complaints / threats / blackmail until it becomes clear to both of us that we are two separate adults …

Why do I need a psychologist.  Illustration from Alice in Wonderland. "Few people find a way out, some do not see it even if they find it, and many do not even look for it."

And then planning will begin – will the mother cooperate, will it be family therapy – or the mother does not cooperate and the client walks alone. The task of the therapist in this case will be very clear: to help the client to separate from the mother, who, by inertia, lives life through the child much longer than necessary – up to 35 years old, for example.

Why visit a psychologist and what to expect from therapy.  Quote from Alice in Wonderland, You need to run as fast just to stay in place, and to get somewhere, you must run at least twice as fast!

Now that a specific door to a specific garden has been found, the American therapist will give Alice two pieces of mushroom: support and frustration. Aki balancing opposites of a single process (everything in the world consists of them – from atom to love).

How to choose a psychologist.  Support and frustration

The psychotherapist’s support is:

  • education of the client in terms of what happens to him… Explaining what exactly the mechanisms of mental adaptation to life in his particular case faded, why and what usually helps. These are different lectures and books, so that the client understands how such cases arise, develop and unravel. Those. he began to orient himself in his problem;
  • analysis of the situation – transformation of a complex of non-specific emotional experiences into a fact-map of the problem – what exactly causes discomfort;
  • working with the client’s internal narrative – his convictions about what is happening, so that he suddenly understands that what is happening can be perceived and evaluated in a different way, to perform other actions and naturally – to get a different result;
  • making a list of possible solutions to a specific problem (in the example – how to move out of the mother physically and psychologically in order to be able to meet with other adults);
  • support in the implementation of the decision – because the client lived to be 35 years old with his mother, not only because of her.

And now about the second half of the mushroom, i.e. therapeutic process, which is as important as the first: frustration.

The problem is not that Russian therapists do not give clients this second important half of the process. The problem was perfectly described by Anastasia Rubtsova – that the therapist in Russian is perceived by the majority of clients as “a caring mother of a very small and, moreover, a sick child.” Which is the second half of the mushroom – i.e. therapy – categorically spits out.

Frustration in this example is:

  • finding out that the client only wants to remove that partwhere mom interferes with his sex life – but leave the one where you don’t have to pay rent, clean and cook;
  • what from other adults he expects to be treated in the same way as his / her mother. And that the idea of ​​“sex changes only to sex” – he / she is furiously indignant, because by default he / she has the attitude “let me let you take care of me, solve all my problems, and you will love me unconditionally” – and every time another adult refuses to become a mother, “oh my God, my mother was right!”;
  • make a list of qualitiesexpected for execution from a potential partner – write it down in the column to the left. Then, on the right, start writing what the equivalent can offer in return. Because adult relationships are win-win.

The therapist should not feel sorry for the client and tell him that he is always right. His task is to help the client accept reality as it is, because the refusal to accept it has never helped anyone to make it different. Manage expectations. List possible solutions. Check them for realism. And keep the resolve to act in the execution process.

Ukrainian and Russian therapists, if they have received a classical education, know what they should do. The problem – for almost 20 years now – is that their clients believe that the therapist is the kind of mermaid who has the top from the ideal mother and the bottom from the goldfish. And you can “tell” your personal life, financial well-being and health in three years.

How to choose a psychologist.  Quote from Alice in Wonderland. "If each person did their own thing, the Earth would spin faster."

No, a therapist is a person who inspects your inner narrative with you, makes a list of solutions and helps you stay on course for new, unusual actions for the sake of a new, unusual result.

UPD means real psychotherapists, with appropriate classical education, supporters of evidence-based medicine, ideally – the positive results of whose work you have seen with your own eyes. Namely, they themselves noted in the behavior of the person recommending those positive changes that they would like for themselves. As for books and lectures, AB has books that simply explain, in my opinion, any condition. From depression and VSD, to children and parents.

Lily Kim

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