I’m going through an intense treatment program right now that lasts for 2 years when all is said and done, sometimes longer. Thus far I have been relieved to have certain character flaws pointed out to me because I know I have them and seek to change the ones that cause me problems. I don’t like feeling broken and for 8 years I waited for my turn in this program seeing it as a relief agent that will “fix” my “brokenness”.
As it turns out it’s a lot more challenging than I thought.
Part of the program is to be challenged, sometimes in very uncomfortable ways. Ways that, by design I’m sure, put your mind in tough situations and force you to think through. One way this happened for me is the therapist changed the verbage of their questioning in such a way that I was going to have to have a confrontation. I am not one to engage in confrontation. In fact, we were discussing that when I have an acquaintance or friend and a confrontation occurs I usually don’t engage and then seek to sever ties. However, with someone I’m in a relationship with I will engage in confrontation with them. This is a problem.
The therapist could have simply said, this is a problem and then given me a set of instructions to begin working on it. Instead they chose to highlight the behavior and then work with it directly by forcing a confrontation. I don’t like being mentally badgered and in the moment I was angry and felt attacked, but after some reflection I understood what happened, I protected a flaw.
I came by it fairly honestly. I was moved around a lot as a child and was never given an opportunity to make friends. We rarely stayed in one spot for more than 6 months. The one or two friends I had we moved away from and that was that. Instead I was always around family. I learned that family was always, friends were temporary. The major adults in my life practiced this. I went into my teenage years confused about who I was and had already learned to keep my insides in, hidden, protected and sometimes despised. I ended up making one really good friend and I fell in love with him. That didn’t end in the fairy tale I wanted. I ended up walking away from him too, my wife at the time knew I was in love with him and to try and keep the peace in my marriage I did the hardest thing, I walked away from my one friend.
Then prison comes and virtually everything is temporary. I’m almost designed to cope with that. Prison is unique in that you can have intense bonds with people and then once they or you get out that bond ceases. It can leave one feeling very hurt and betrayed. So, in an effort to not feel that I stopped letting people in. To protect myself from being hurt. Like I said, I came by the flaw honestly but its not easy to have to confront such a thing.
In fact, it’s terrifying. However, I’ve given up on so many wonderful opportunities to experience love in its many forms for fear of being hurt and I don’t want to live like that anymore. I want to love wholeheartedly. I want to be loved and it’s not the easiest thing in the world to destroy walls that protect ones heart, but I know I’m ready. It’s time to reclaim my life and accept that my childhood may have defined me once, but I have a choice now and I’m reclaiming my life.
When therapists attack. Thank God they do…
Feel free to contact me, a little human contact is always welcome
Ruth Utnage fka jeff 823469 C-601-2
PO Box 888
Monroe, WA. 98272
or via Jpay email service (you have to use my birth name, but, please do not call me by it, my new legal name is Ruth)