It was a weird session. Productive on one hand but on the other hand there were a lot of thoughts I couldn’t/can’t process.
We talked about my issue with “guilt”. The feeling that is constantly present due to some recent events, the feeling that makes me want to cut, the feeling I chose for my emotion analysis and of which my therapist says that it’s not an actual emotion but rather something we are being taught.
As even I am aware that the events that make me feel guilty were not serious if viewed objectively we tried to find out from which event in the past I know this feeling of “I should have done more!”. A thousand situations floated past my inner eye, we then picked one of them.
A bed, a relative, me – petrified. The guilt from back then because I could never make him happy. The guilt from today because I didn’t fight. Guilt he should feel instead of me according to my therapist as he didn’t respect my boundaries.
My therapist talks about other children, about her 4-year-old son who already stops cuddling and who closes the bathroom door. I was older than that. It was okay I didn’t want to…wasn’t it? But he never used violence – just a guilty conscience. She says it’s not only bad when you’re in pain but that grown-ups have to see when they are going too far. Things I know but can’t apply on myself.
I should have done more, I should have done more, I should have done more.
Guilt crushes me, I am there, then I am gone and I only want to cut.
My therapist decides that there’s no use in staying with that situation and that we should rather focus on what to do now that we know that every little thing activates the feeling from back then.
Now I have to write down when and how often I feel guilty (all the time?!). That will be a lot of work, after all I am reknown for apologizing all the time and/or thanking people and both feels like cowering to me. I don’t thank people with my head held high but always in an obsequious way and my boss writes emails titled “Don’t apologize for doing your work ;)”. Colleagues correct me when I sound too obsequiosly, I say sorry for saying sorry too often and I wanted to start this post with an apology for writing so lately (therapy is on Saturdays) although this is my blog and I can write what- and whenever I want to.
I strongly believe that my apologies make me a nicer person. And that nobody is going to like me anymore when I stop saying them (and yes I was aware that this is pretty infantile even before my therapist pointed it out). I always feel like I’m not giving people enough; so an apology is the least I can offer.
My therapist suggested that I should look for a model: Someone I know who simply says “Thanks!” – just once and casually and who only apologizes when they actually have done something wrong. At least I know exactly who will be that person already 🙂