I have always assumed my therapist has a ‘no touching clients’ rule. I assumed this, because within the last 5 years I have been seeing her, she has never held my hand, or hugged me. And I know about therapy boundaries, and ethical codes of conduct. So, I know some therapists still choose to hug etc, but some don’t. I assumed the latter, was the case for my counsellor.
This week, however, while I was sitting in the waiting room, I realised she does not have this rule, for all her clients. I saw her hug and kiss a woman on the cheek. I could tell by the conversation, this woman was not a friend, because she hadn’t seen her for a while. And if this woman was a friend, she wouldn’t be at the counselling centre making an appointment.
It shocked me, because this was not something I ever expected to see. And it made me realise, I had assumed she had this ‘no touch’ rule, which made me feel better, about her not hugging me, or holding my hand, like I know other therapists choose to.
Of course, I have been wondering since, why she chooses not to have physical contact with me? What’s wrong with me, that makes me someone she would not touch? Bearing in mind as well, that she was a GP for years prior to becoming a counsellor, so she is very used to touching patients.
Obviously there is something about me, that I don’t realise – makes normal people not want to touch me. And it seems only toxic, abusive people want to touch me.
It is very painful to realise this. I must be repulsive in some way that I don’t understand. I always shower prior to appointments. I wear clean clothes. I’m not repulsive in my appearance. So, I can only assume it is my personality, or my character that is the issue. Or, maybe it’s my past and someone like me, really is damaged goods? And that makes normal people find me physically repulsive? Maybe, she just really doesn’t like me, and that is why?
I also realise, that whilst jealousy and envy, are not emotions I normally ever feel, I did feel this, when watching this physical embrace and gesture of physical contact. There have been so many times when I have been crying and upset, when I truly needed a hug, or the comfort of holding my hands. But, they have never been offered to me.
It makes me feel really hurt, ashamed, damaged, dirty, disgusting and very emotional, to realise this.
It’s been really upsetting me, since the appointment. And it not something I can talk about with her. Partly because it’s really embarrassing, and also………… I don’t think I want to know the reason why.
It might make me feel even worse, to know why.
Some things are better left unsaid.
~ Lilly Hope Lucario
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