Connection When Needed Most

Tuesday was group night again.

I didn’t want to go. I didn’t want to see anyone. I didn’t want anyone to see me. To even look in my direction. I’ve been feeling horribly depressed. I barely ate, barely slept. I was tired of people. Isolating, because I’ve been in that “don’t trust anyone” place.

There were reasons for not wanting anyone near me. For wanting to disconnect from everyone. I’m not going to go into detail, as I already spoke to my therapist about it in yesterday’s session, and don’t want to get into it again. In short, I’ve been feeling abandoned and rejected by my uncle (the one who used to live with us- a significant attachment for me) for a while now already. I also lost two friends over the course of the month, all because I practiced my “no” and they didn’t like it.

Therapist told me that it’s a pattern with me. I tend to surround myself with the wrong people. The problem is, I attach too quickly. I’m so hungry for connection and intimacy that I jump in prematurely, and end up getting hurt. She said that I take on the helper role, which is true… I like the protector role too. I’ll do anything to make someone happy, to help them however I can. But the minute I’m unable to deliver what they ask for, or I need them (it’s hard enough for me to ask as it is), they disappear out of my life. I don’t know how else to do it though. I want to help others. I want to be there for them. I want to be reliable. I want to protect and save everybody (as if I’m a superhero and can actually do that). But it often comes at the expense of myself. I haven’t quite figured out how to balance it. It’s easy for me to give. But not easy to receive. It’s easy to give someone a hug. It’s hard to accept one. The list goes on.

I told Therapist that I genuinely feel like there’s something wrong with me. That people leave because I’m doing something wrong. She asked whether I’ve ever thought that maybe it’s not me, but rather something to do with them? Sometimes I do, but it doesn’t last long and I revert back to blaming myself. I’ve been slacking in the self-compassion department lately as well. But I guess it’s bound to happen from time to time.

Back to Tuesday evening. I ended up dragging myself to group. I knew it would be good for me. But I determined to keep my walls up. Sure, greet everyone and throw in a few smiles here and there, but not allow any deeper interactions. Well, that was the plan anyway. I can’t remember anything from arriving at the clinic and leading up to the start of group. Next thing I know I’m sitting in the chair next to D’s (the OT leading the group that night). As I’ve mentioned before, sitting next to her gives me a sense of comfort. She’s my “safe person”. But that night I didn’t want to feel the attachment and connection. So why was I sitting there? Maybe subconsciously I really actually wanted to feel it.

From the beginning, D seemed tuned into me. While I was trying to withdraw, it was like she was having none of that. Instead, she drew me closer. And little by little, my defenses came down. I felt a very strong connection with her that evening. She broke through. She connected. And I couldn’t help getting drawn in. She made me feel comfortable and secure letting her into my personal space. That’s extremely rare for me. I don’t want to write the details here, it’s stored safely inside. In case you didn’t know, in my previous post where I said that there was only one other person I’d allow close to me in the state I had been in, I was talking about D. It seems she really can reach me where others may not be able to. That night, she picked me up off the cold concrete floor and wrapped me in a warm blanket. And I knew. She cares.

Yesterday’s therapy session was an emotional one, but I’m so glad that I had that session. It was very good timing. Therapist is amazing, and she was so good with me. Thankfully, during this bad time, I had been able to keep our connection open. When I didn’t want to let anyone in, she was the only one that I still held onto and didn’t want to close myself off to. Being allowed to send her texts and emails between sessions really helps. It’s basically just “checking in” sometime during the week, or when I see an image that I think she’d like. I don’t tell her about anything that’s going on, or my emotional state (most of the time at least). I keep that for our sessions. Now it’s 11 days (excluding weekends) until I get to see her again. Why do I still count down the days?

Therapist is the healthiest attachment I’ve ever had. She doesn’t give up on me. She has my best interests at heart. She helps me fight when I feel I just can’t fight anymore. But most of all… She believes in me, even when I don’t.

Connection. Terrifying. But worth it.

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23 thoughts on “Connection When Needed Most

  1. Sounds a bit like me to a certain extent, always worrying about what other people think, always wanting to make sure others are happy first but in the same time neglecting myself. It’s a really tricky thing and as you say, hard to balance right. I still find it a bit strange that I can completely open up to my counsellor (therapist!) and talk about anything, but I can’t yet do that with loved ones for fear of them seeing a “weak” me. Great post as always, keep believing. Wishing you a nice weekend 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s easier to speak to our therapists than to our loved ones. I think it’s because we know we won’t be judged by our therapists, but there’s a chance of perhaps being rejected by those we love the most. Thanks for your comment. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Your therapist does sound very special, Rayne. With regard to helping others, do you know about the concept of triage? ER physicians and medics on the battlefield have to figure out what is possible more than who is the most injured and needy. They put them in three groups: those who can be saved if they get immediate help, those who can wait, and those who (no matter what help is given) will not survive. Therapists, too, need to manage their own strength and resilience. If they give to everyone, they themselves sink and can help no one.

    Sometimes people who don’t think well of themselves also choose toxic people who want something from them because they don’t believe a healthy person would want any part of them. Hang in there.

    Liked by 4 people

    1. I like the triage concept. I’m definitely one of those who draw toxic people in, and let them in, because I don’t think a healthy person would ever want to get close to me. Working on that though. 🙂

      Like

  3. I relate so strongly to similar patterns. I often offer to help when I really shouldnt. I am so glad you have two healthy connections now, Rsyne. You really are facing old patterns. It may be sad to have lost connections but maybe the deoression has anger inside it too as they didnt respect your boundaries and being let down like that hurts. But letting toxic friends go is better even though you grieve when they go as it sparks old abandonment feelings. Love to you D 💖

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I understand how hard it is to make connections. I don’t actually trust anyone. I have no family and the friends I do have I have no real trust in. No one is ever there when I really need them. I have come to terms with that. It sucks but it is all I have ever known. Never stop fighting Rayne.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. It’s understandable that you would blame yourself for being the one with the problem when your friends disappear after you a draw a boundary. After all, who’s the common denominator right? (It’s a familiar question that I’ve asked myself often.)

    But when those people disappear like that, try to remember (I know it’s not easy) that it leaves room for others who will actually respect your ‘no’s’. And good for you for drawing those boundaries and sticking to them even though you lost them. Good on ya for being strong. It’s important to show that self-respect, not only to them, but to yourself as well.

    Also…glad you had a good group session too.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. i’m so glad your therapist is always there for you. I feel similarly about my therapist. The connection with her is so very important to me. I crave it when we are not together. She also allows me to text and email in between sessions. It helps a ton. xxx

    Liked by 1 person

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