Posted by: Marie | August 28, 2012

(699) And now I’m changing my mind – Part 4 of 5

Post #699
[Private journal entry written on Wednesday, October 5, 2011 about a conversation between my therapist and me – continued from previous post]


(I shrugged like a obstinate nine-year-old . . . )

Me: That’s not going to happen . . . I have to just accept that this is the way it is . . . that I am not capable of this kind of relationship . . . just like I’m not capable of being a professional basketball player . . . I don’t have the height and physical prowess and natural talent to be a professional basketball player . . . or even a viable player in a local league.

On the Walkway by Martin Chen

In the same way, I don’t have what it takes to be in that kind of a relationship. I never have and I never well. I will never be a basketball player and I’ll never have emotionally satisfying relationships with men. I have to accept both of those things as simple facts of life . . . I have to deal with it and get on with life.

Of course, it helps that I have no desire to be a basketball player . . . but, I’m just saying . . . there are some things that can’t be helped . . .

I don’t have the mental stability and sexual attractiveness and self-love needed to be in a healthy romantic relationship. Even with a lifetime of therapy, I don’t think I ever will. I just have to accept that about myself. The most I can hope for is to be depressed less often . . . to not want to die everyday.

Edward: (After a thoughtful pause) In the moment you formed the belief James is going to leave – just like every other man in your life – what did you decide about yourself?

(I avoided the answer, which is: This situation is further proof that I’m too fucked up to be fixed. Instead, I said . . . )

Me: I was reminded that emotional connections with quality men are not going to part of my life – that I can either keep my emotional distance and have constrained relationships, or I can continue to reach out for connection and continue to watch men walk away – really, run away – from me in disgust, which leaves me with no relationships with men of any kind.

Edward: (After a pause) Isn’t that the conundrum of your childhood?

Me: Yes . . . and it’s the conundrum of my adulthood! It’s my current experience!

(We sat silently for a few moments as I put a few puzzle pieces together in my mind.)

Edward: Can you see that you took a few brave steps towards opening up and reaching out to a few carefully selected men, and now you have been triggered by one instance of what looks like a man taking a step back away from you – and you have decided to pull back and put back up your protective walls?

Me: Yes, I can see that. But, it is way too painful to stay open . . . to have hope that gets dashed over and over again. It is too painful to hope. I’m not willing to allow myself to have hope.

(Long pause)

Me: Maybe the reason I’ve been in a depressed state the last couple of weeks is because I got triggered by the interaction with James . . . I didn’t know what caused me to go back into that hopeless place . . . but that makes sense . . .

(Another pause)

Me: If I experience this much internal turmoil and drama over trying to establish a platonic relationship with a married and “safe” piano student, how am I ever going to tolerate dating? There is no way I will ever be able to handle dating!

Edward: I think you are making an accurate assessment of how difficult it will be for you to date. There will be many, many routine interactions that will trigger you in a major way. It will be a difficult journey.

Me: And that’s why I’m not interested in dating . . . it is not worth it. It is far less painful to not date.

Edward: I think either option will be painful for you, at least for a time . . . but, eventually, dating will become easier for you as you work through the issues that come up for you within your dating experiences.

Me: I’m not interested . . . I’m not willing to date.

Edward: Would you be willing to instead say “not now” and reconsider the possibility later?

Me: No. I don’t want to date – not now, not ever.

(Yet another pause)

Me: It’s like what I see in my students . . . there are some kids who catch on quickly and there are other kids who really struggle to make progress – and the latter will never be really accomplished pianists in the traditional sense. But, that is okay because it really is not about being accomplished. It is about the joy of expressing their unique “soul music” in their own way. I’m willing to continue working with them as long as they are willing to continue because any progress is a good thing.

It’s the same thing for me and men . . . I’m never going to be someone who can date . . . so, I’ll just let it be okay and I’ll stick to the kinds of relationships I can handle . . .

Edward: Is it not true that you believe all of your students can learn to play . . . just some quicker and some slower . . . ??

Me: Yes, I do believe every single one of them can learn if they are willing to do the work.

But, at some point, most of the ones who struggle get frustrated and give up when the desired accomplishment is no longer worth the struggle . . . and I think that’s where I’m at right now . . . I’m choosing to stop struggling to create emotional connections with men. I have no more hope.

Edward: Is it okay if I hold the possibility of you having healthy relationships with men in the future – is it okay if I have hope for you?

Me: Sure, I don’t care – that’s your job. What you think and believe doesn’t change what I’m thinking and believing.

[Continued in the next post . . . ]


  1. Wow, this is quite a session

    • It was one in which I was thinking and figuring out stuff more than experiencing emotions!

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