Tuesday, January 29, 2013
Mark has been going to a new therapist for a few months now. When he first started with her, she said it sometimes takes people months to feel comfortable enough to really talk to a therapist, so don't worry about taking this slow.
So after work yesterday, I walk through the snow storm to get to his therapist's office (it's close by and no sense moving the car closer to the office from where I park near my office) to meet with her and Mark after his session. She lets me in the room and immediately starts in:
"Well, if Mark won't talk about his problems he'll never be able to deal with them. So I guess I agree, he shouldn't be in school (note- this has been a sticking point with her, that he's being tutored through his senior year). In fact, he shouldn't go to college and should never even think about getting a job. After all, if he can't learn to deal with the downs of life, then he'll never be able to do anything." She looks at Mark. "Is that what you want?"
Mark says, "I told you I plan to go to college."
She looks back at me. "You'll have both of your boys living with you forever. Or is that okay with you? I guess that'd be fine, they can be there to take care of you when you're old."
I was pretty much speechless, but I did say, "My older son works full time. It's not like he doesn't do anything. And Mark knows it's either go to college or get a job." (Note: Older son just moved back in with us to get back on his feet after wife dumped him and left him with maxed out credit cards)
She goes on, "I told Mark that these days people can live completely in their houses, especially if they're in a city and can order food in. Work from home over the internet. You could do that, right, Mark? Record your music and then send it out there."
Mark, through gritted teeth, "I told you that wouldn't work. Music fans wouldn't accept that."
"WEll, that's all you'll ever be able to do because you're not willing to work through your problems. Just stay inside and don't deal with people. That's the only way to keep from having problems you can't handle."
At that point, we decided to end the therapy sessions with her. I really and truly felt judged, degraded and bullied.
When we left, Mark said he had already answered all her questions (I guess she'd been going on like that with him for some time before I came), but then posed them to me again 'like she was trying to get you on her side.'
Listen, I know it's not the best situation with Mark having such anxiety about going back to his high school that we've made the decision (and by we, I mean my husband and I, Mark's school, and his doctor) that he'll not go back. Ever. He won't even participate in the graduation ceremony. He is a clinically depressed teen with anxiety issues. We know this. We also know that he needs to at least try for a fresh start, and that means college in the fall. He'll still live with us for the first two years and commute.
But, damn it, he didn't need to be bullied by someone who's supposed to be helping him.
I don't know if that was her 'strategy' to try to get a reaction out of him, but the reaction was anger and mistrust. Even if he went back to her, he'd never open up to her after that.
So now he's had two therapists, one who was too passive for him (who he did open up to, but felt that the therapist wasn't helping him find coping strategies) and one who was too aggressive.
There has to be a middle ground, right?