If there is one simple reason why I didn't marry The Man from San Antone it's that his family had a pervasive attitude that I could not reconcile: Without Me You're Nothing. I couldn't see any way for me to comfortably have children in that environment. So I ran off to New York City to marry Buzz Kill instead which was the right decision even though the marriage to Buzz Kill ended badly.
At the moment, it seems to me that my shrink also thinks: Without Me You're Nothing.
She firmly believes that I need to be in therapy twice per week to be emotionally stable. I've come to believe that is bullshit because even though she is a great therapist and I would never have gotten where I am today without her consistent support -- I'm the one who does the work of therapy. Most likely, I would have been okay if I had dropped down to one session per week a long time ago.
When I think of all the money that I've spent out of pocket to be in therapy, I have to remind myself that if I'd have traveled the world and the seven seas, I'd have driven everyone around me crazy. And truly, up until I got divorced, the depressions were crushing, but I don't blame the marriage. Even if therapy and a shit load of psychotropics were the main reasons I was able to stay married for so long, I'm glad I did because it was the best thing for Velvet.
It's not like Buzz Kill was abusive or anything. He's profoundly annoying, but he wasn't a bad husband except for all the financial irresponsibility that precipitated the divorce. He's paying me on time now, though, so who knows? Maybe we'll be friends again some day.
Since people play out all the issues they have in the larger world in therapy, I can't blame my therapist because I completely bought into the idea that it was best for me to see her twice a week. I'm not even sure I can blame her for not listening to me about not being able to afford that much therapy until I hadn't paid her for six months.
I can, however, be pissed because she seems to believe that without her, I'm a quivering, insecure mass of emotional goo.
Everyone is a quivering, insecure mass of emotional goo occasionally. And I was such a vibrating mass of unacknowledged rage that I was stymied. Hell, I wouldn't have gone to grad school at all if my therapist hadn't convinced me to register because my mother was against me spending the tuition money on myself. She said that I was putting my needs ahead of Velvet's - which is an express ticket to eternal damnation in my mother's book. Eventually, my mother saw that Velvet would actually benefit as a result me going to grad school, but she was opposed to it at the time. If it weren't for therapy, I would have surely followed my mother's instructions, resented the hell out of it and made everyone within 100 yards miserable.
Nevertheless, I am the one who went to class and got the degree. I am the one who has had a million and three conversations with my mother. Actually, my mother deserves a bit of credit, too, because some people get entrenched in their bullshit and never recognize the validity of other people's perspectives. Over the years I've come to see that as much as my mother might want to duct tape my mouth shut her own self, she'll protect and defend me like a Rottweiler.
And even though my therapist was immensely helpful with parenting, I'm still the one who dealt with Velvet. My therapist has never laid eyes on Velvet, although she did recommend Velvet's therapist and that man has been invaluable.
You know, when somebody makes a statement that her therapist isn't the one who parents her child although her therapist recommended the child's therapist - we can safely say there has been enough damn therapy in that house.
Thank G*d that I have no debts beyond my student loan and mortgage except to my therapist (and The Man from San Antone is taking care of that). Even if Buzz Kill and I had put all the thousands that went to my therapy into a sensible retirement account - most likely we'd have gotten screwed out of the retirement funds like so many responsible Americans.
At least I have all this self-actualization and individuation to show for that vast sum. The best news, though, is that after my session on Monday, I ran into my former riding instructor. I hadn't seen her since before my shoulder surgery - and while I was recuperating, the stable where I took lessons on West 89th Street closed down.
She'll be teaching out on Long Island very soon, and I'm going to dust off my helmet and start riding again. As it happened, until I took riding lessons, I thought that my mind was completely severed from my body so that I effectively had no mind-body connection. Not so. Through riding, I began to see that my mind and body are so acutely connected that I couldn't tolerate it. Riding changed all that.
Well, riding and The Ashley Madison Experiment - but since I don't discuss sex on the blog, that will have to remain another story.
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