I wrote a blog a few weeks ago, about feeling very emotional to see my counsellor hug and kiss someone, whilst knowing she never offers this to me. I know now, I went straight to that place of toxic shame, to think that there was something ‘wrong’ with me, that makes me an ‘untouchable patient/client’.
Since, writing that blog, I of course have continued to process this and start to see this from a different viewpoint. I realise, being an abuse survivor – who has been abused so much, that my counsellor needs to model appropriate behaviour, especially with regards to physical contact. To protect her and me.
It is sad to reflect on the fact that no other significant person in my life, has modelled appropriate physical contact with me. Each person has used, abused and mistreated me.
So, whilst I would truly love to have hugs and my hand held by my counsellor, I am in fact, now truly thankful that she doesn’t. It was hard to talk about this, but I needed to. And she handled it really well, and in a really sensitive way.
I know that for her sake and mine, I need really appropriate boundaries modelled. And this includes emotional and physical boundaries.
She did confirm that the person she hugged, was in fact a supervision client. She supervises therapists, for their own counselling, as counsellors. And she confirmed she did feel awkward that this therapist, wanted to hug and kiss on the cheek. So, I do know I assumed this person was a patient like myself. And I was wrong.
She told me it was good that I was able to raise this and talk about it. And to understand and work out myself, what is really the issue going on. And the main issue, was my toxic shame issues surfacing.
My counsellor doesn’t get everything right. She isn’t perfect and nor should I expect her do be. Any more than I can be perfect. No-one is. But the fact that I can raise issues with her, face my shame with her, was really good. Tell her I felt jealous and hurt and how I rarely ever feel envy, but it was definitely something I felt then. And she was really glad I did. And she confirmed that envy was in fact okay. Because it meant that I recognise that I am now worthy of people hugging me and showing me comfort – that is not with any malicious intent. So that was interesting to hear.
And something else I noticed, is even though this huge issue arose, and I felt this toxic shame -I also got over it pretty quickly. I didn’t react at the time. I didn’t send her an email telling her I was upset. I didn’t text her. I just waited it out. Processed it more. It didn’t affect any further counselling appointments and I dealt with it really well. And I know I could not have done this, even a year ago.
And that shows healing and growth.
I’m very thankful to have someone in my life, who cares about my wellbeing, wants to model healthy boundaries, and does try to do what is needed for my benefit.
God knows I need that in my life. Because I have never had that in my life.
And I am truly thankful.
~ Lilly Hope Lucario
All blogs written by Lilly Hope Lucario and subject to © Copyright Protected.
All rights reserved.
No part of any entry/blog, may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, including photocopying, screenshots, copying & pasting, recording, or other electronic or mechanical methods.
This includes adaptations in all forms of media.