Saturday, August 8, 2009

Lying on the couch

I'd like think of myself as a pretty honest person. Except, when I get down to the bare bones of it, I'm often not. I don't engage in acts of malicious deceitfulness. But...... I will tell my friend that she looks great in that new pair of pants (even if she looks like a trussed up ham). I will tell my facebook friends that their latest addition to the family is 'absolutely adorable' (even when in reality the child has inherited his dads monobrow and resembles somewhat, a frog thats just been given an electric shock). I consider these social lies, and though they trouble me from time to time, its in my nature to try and avoid hurting the feelings of those I care about.

And then, there are the lies of omission. Like the fact that I am spiralling down into a pretty dark place at the moment, but I try to greet my friends and family with a smile and a 'I'm doing fine'. They say they want me to be honest if I'm struggling, but what they really want is for me to tell them I'm ok. (A post on that later).

Finally, the lies I'm struggling with at the moment. The lies on the couch. I'm finding that I am not being incredibly truthful at times with my therapist. Some are lies of omission, some are partial truths and some are out and out lies. And I'm not comfortable with it. The deception makes me feel horrible and guilty. So I've been trying to figure out why I do it. A couple of reasons might be...

1. Two months in, and I am still trying to build the trust. And its so hard, I guess because I feel like there is something inherently distrustfu about a relationship where I will never truly know the other persons true feelings or opinions 100%. Unconditional Positive Regard can be quite an ego boost... but it is also kind of creepy.

2. Time limits. This is where quite often the lies of omission are coming in. At the moment I am in therapy twice a week for 50 minutes. And I seem to have a heck of a lot of stuff I need to cover to hold me over to the next session. Quite a change from the beginning, when I spoke about 3 words a session. And so, I think, if I tell her about this particular incident or feeling, we'll be stuck talking about that for ages, and we won't have time to address this issue or feeling which I think is more important at the moment. But then after I feel guilty, and worry if the first issue becomes a bigger issue is she going to ask me 'Why didn't you tell me about that before?"

3. Quite simply... I don't want her to think I'm really crazy....or weird ie. (D) What do you do to soothe yourself when you wake up from a nightmare? (Me) *thinks, well first thing I do is grab my childhood doll, but I'm 26 years old, and I'm not telling you that!*

4. I don't want her to feel bad. Or like she is helping... so even if I'm feeling worse, I don't like to say.

5. Confronting questions. She asks about things I normally would never have to talk about to other people. About secrets that my heart is just not ready to let go of. But I fear if I tell her that I don't want to answer the question, she will either pursue it harder or will be angry at my resistance.

6. Confusion. My head gets so crazy and messed up and emotional, that sometimes I don't answer right, and then I'm afraid to go back and correct myself, because she might see me as inconsistent or dishonest...

7. Fear. If answer her questions about suicidal ideation, will she want to hospitalise me?

Well, those are just a few thoughts on why... but I guess, at some point or another I am going to have to find it in me to be completely honest or I will sabotage the whole process right?

Is it necessary to be 100% honest in therapy?

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