There are crucial moments during therapy that somehow transform the relationship between the patient and the analyst. For me, this relational aspect of therapy is the most important factor in helping the patient familiarise themselves with the lighter and darker aspects of their psyche. Uncovering your true nature is a never ending long drawn out process but sometimes the fast forward button is engaged and we both seem to leap forward. These moments are seldom planned and just seem to happen naturally in their own time and space.
I was talking away on the couch, just like any other session, when my therapist interrupted me politely and told me that he needed to use the bathroom. He apologised and told me that in 30 years as a therapist he had never done so before and how it was very unorthodox of him. Left on my own in the room for the first time I began to project. Am I literally ‘dumping’ all my problems on him? Gosh, I feel honoured that he felt comfortable enough to leave the room to use the bathroom! Is he using the toilet as an excuse to simply get away from me?
When he re-entered the room again we began to discuss my previous projections and we laughed and joked together about them. It did not pain me to laugh at myself and where my mind liked to run. I felt special, and joined in union with my talking buddy. We had reached a new level of closeness and I was deeply touched by this event.
Sometimes you can walk into therapy with a bunch of issues that you want to discuss, and then, something happens during the session, and words and theories are left behind. They vanish completely, and in the silent space, a new dawn is created and hope shines forth like a diamond.
We need others. We need others to love and we need to be loved by them. There is no doubt that without it, we too, like the infant left alone, would cease to grow, cease to develop, choose madness and even death ~ Leo Buscaglia
2 responses to “Intimacy – Moments On The Couch”
I had a similar moment when I asked my analyst while he suddenly seemed distant, he said, he had just become aware of his own misogyny and jealousy. I said, go on. He said, “the thought came into my head, ‘why has a girl got a better car than me’ “. I really felt I could trust him after this and our work went to a new level.
Thanks for sharing Philipa, it is quite incredible when the relationship moves forward from an unsuspected moment, and new trust is developed.