succumbing to peer pressure

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

Therapy affects everyone

One of the things Becky and I talk about is the fact that when you change as a result of therapy, that change inevitably affects the people around you and the way you interact with them. When you show up differently, when you refuse to fit into the box you used to fill with your friends and family, they have no choice but to wiggle around the boundaries of their boxes. Sometimes negatively, sometimes positively, that's sort of the double-edged sword of therapy.

What I'm getting at is that for all the general greatness of my folks, and for as frequently as we say I love you, we're still not all that touchy-feely with the emotional stuff. We're not very good at talking to each other about what upsets us and hurts our feelings. Mom and Dad certainly try to be there for me, but they often mis-guess at the things that are really going to hit me like a ton of bricks and the things that are barely a blip on the screen. It's still trial-and-error with them, but lately they've been really nailing it. Partly because I'm consciously and intentionally being more honest with them but I think also as a subconscious reaction to the work I've been doing. They've been great about each of my recent conference experiences, making a point to remember to call or e-mail with a little message of good luck and relax and we know you'll do great and we're thinking about you. And just this morning Dad included a little "how are you? don't stress about the roommate thing, and go drink a molson for the Canadians" (who moved away last week and whom I already miss desperately) in his usually rather impersonal daily e-mails linking to newspaper and journal articles.


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