its me alicia again. remember i wrote yesterday? about my conversation with dr. barry? well when i got home i was really triggered. i think talking about all that stuff about wanting a mom and wanting to live with eileen or dr. barry really triggered me. i was sad and felt like crying. i was also mad that it could not happen. everything was just getting to me. i felt horrible.
i rang eileen to tell her i was feeling bad, and that i felt sad. she didnt pick up so i left a message. i asked her to text me and told her i was hoping to talk to her. that was about 1 o’clock. she didnt ring or text me back. i waited and waited all day and felt more and more upset and trigggered. i felt like maybe she was tired of hearing me go on about being adopted and not having a mom. i felt like maybe she wasnt gonna be there for me any more. and i cried and cried because everything felt so overwhelming and hard.
eventually carol anne made me go to bed at about 8 PM. she tucked me in and settled me down for the night. she talked to me and promised that eileen would respond, and if she did she would tell her that i was sleeping but she said she’d arrange for me to talk to her today. so i accepted that. i went to sleep feeling so sad. it was nice that carol anne cared about me and tucked me in and wanted to be there for me but i was still so sad, i just wanted eileen.
eileen did respond, carol anne said she texted at about 9 PM. she apologised for not getting back to me sooner. carol anne told her i was sleeping and they arranged for me to call her at 11:15 this morning. so i did. i spent 25 minutes on the phone with her. it was great. we talked about me being triggered. i told eileen that everything was just too much for me and getting to me. she said she understood.
a friend had given me the idea that maybe eileen could adopt me for the hour and a half that we spend together each week. that maybe she could be a therapist mom. and that maybe sometimes we could do things together during our sessions. i liked that idea a lot so i asked eileen about it. she thought it was a great idea and agreed to it! she said that even when i am not out, even when I am inside, that she will be there for me. so when i go to therapy each week and sit in her office i will know she loves me and is there for me no matter what. i think this could work. she also said she would read to me and record that and send it to me. that sounds good to me. she also said that maybe sometimes we could do a meditation exercise together, or walk around her room touching stuff, or she could hold us like she did a week ago, she always hugs me and that feels so good.
she said that when we got off the phone i should do something fun like watch a movie or something. im still thinking on what i can do. i think a movie sounds like something i would enjoy. it will also keep me distracted and take my mind off stuff for a while.
i feel good after talking to eileen. im less sad now. she helped me feel better. but she always does. hearing her voice helps me feel grounded again.
alicia age 9
i talked with dr. barry today. it was a hard conversation. i admitted things to her that were so hard to say. im only 9 and i find it hard to get words out and say what i want to say. it doesnt sound right most the time. mostly i just sound so dumb. dr. barry is so nice to me. she always listens, like i am the only person in her world just right then. she makes me feel like i matter. she listens, and she hears me, really hears what i am saying. i love her for that. well i love her for so many reasons but that is one big reason. anyway. ok i am rambling. back to today. i told her i’d had a hard therapy session last monday. and we talked about what my dad said about me just being a job to eileen and her. she asked me if my dad said that because of something else, like had their been another conversation before that one where he said that. there hadnt been. he just said it to be mean. liz did have a disagreement with him last week and they ended up yelling at each other. dr. barry said maybe he was stewing about that and so said those things because he was angry with us still. i dunno. all i know is he said them and it really hurt and upset me. i dont want to be a job to dr. barry or eileen. i want to be someone who matters to them, i want them to think about me when i am not there. i want them to love me. as hard as that is to admit. i just want to be taken care of so bad that it hurts. dr. barry said she understands. i told her sometimes i fantasise about what it would be like to live with her. i told her i feel bad for doing that, that maybe i am crazy or wrong or something. it feels like that like i am a terrible person, because, who in their right mind wants to live with their psychiatrist, and wants her to adopt them? who wants their psychiatrist or therapist as a mom? me. i do. i admitted that to dr. barry today. she said she thought i was brave to admit that to her. and she respected me. i was like wow. she just said she respects me because i told her i fantasise about living with her and her family. i thought for sure she was gonna say allie you are crazy. or bad. or fucked up. or insane. i didnt ever think she’d say i was brave or that she respected me. i told her its a running joke in our system with everyone, that they all think its really funny that my passion in life is to have dr. barry adopt me. but i dont think its funny. she agreed it wasnt funny at all. she even said lots of children want someone other than their bio mom to be a mother figure to them. i never knew that! she said that maybe i should do some more work with eileen around all this. i think we need to do tons of work. i have a lot of issues around this and they arent going away any time soon. i just want a mom! preferably dr. barry or eileen. but that aint ever gonna happen, because as much as i hate it they are my treatment team, my therapist and psychiatrist, and they arent allowed by law to adopt me. and even though i am a kid in a grown up body, our body is an adult, so too old to be adopted. it makes me want to cry. curl into a ball and cry. it also makes me want to scream. ball my fists up and punch someone or something and scream about how unfair it all is. at least dr. barry listens, and gets me, really gets me and why i feel like this. i’m glad i got to spend half an hour with her today. there needs to be more doctors like her practicing because she is so awesome and amazing and she really cares about her patients.
I love you so much, dr. Barry!
Alicia age 9
HI ITS LIZ.
THIS WEEK I GOT TIME IN THERAPY. I ACTUALLY CAME INTO THE SESSION. USUALLY CAROL ANNE COMES AND THEN IF ONE OF US NEEDS TIME WE JUST COME OUT DURING THE SESSION. BUT I HAD BEEN WORKING HARD THIS WEEK PROCESSING LAST WEEKS SESSION SO I DECIDED THAT IW OULD JUST GO AND KEEP WORKING ON THINGS. SO THAT IS WHAT I DID.
ITS SO HARD. EVERYTHING KINDA SWAMPED ME. MY EMOTIONS GOT SO OVERWHELMING. THEY SEEMED SO UNMANAGEABLE. LAST WEEK AFTER THERAPY DURING THAT WEEK I NEEDED EILEEN SO BADLY. I FELT LIKE I COULDNT COPE AND I NEEDED HER REASSURANCE AND THAT CONNECTION. I REACHED OUT A FEW TIMES TO HER. WHEN SHE DIDNT RESPOND QUICK ENOUGH I PANICKED, BUT THIS WEEK IN SESSION WE REALISED, THAT ACTUALLY IT WAS THE 5 YEAR OLD PART OF ME PANICKING. SHE FELT UNABLE TO COPE. SHE FELT LOST AND ALONE AND ON HER OWN. SO WE WORKED WITH HER DURING OUR SESSION.
EILEEN KEPT REASSURING HER THAT SHE WAS THERE FOR HER AND THAT EVEN WHEN SHE WASNT ABLE TO RESPOND SHE WAS STILL HERE, BUT SO WAS I. I HAD NEVER SOOTHED HER BEFORE. THAT FELT WEIRD AND UNCOMFORTABLE BUT EILEEN HELPED ME TO THINK OF THINGS THAT I COULD DO TO SELF SOOTHE, THINK UP THINGS ME AND MY 5 YEAR OLD SELF COULD DO TOGETHER. AT THE WEEKEND SHE HAD WANTED TO TEXT EILEEN IN A PANICK, SAYING SHE WAS GONNA DIE IF SHE DIDNT RESPOND TO HER. I DIDNT ALLOW HER TO TEXT EILEEN, I QUICKLY PUT A STOP TO THAT THINKING EILEEN WOULD THINK WE WERE OFF THE WALL AND WOULD NOT APPRECIATE THAT KINDA TEXT.
DURING OUR SESSION WHEN I REALISED THAT ACTUALLY MY 5 YEAR OLD SELF NEEDED REASSURANCE, BECAUSE BACK ALL THOSE YEARS AGO WHEN WE WERE IN THAT BORDING SCHOOL IN DUBLIN AND SHE WAS ON HER OWN, SHE DIDNT HAVE ANYONE TO CARE FOR HER, SHE DIDNT HAVE ANYONE TO TURN TO, SHE HAD TO JUST GET ON WITH IT NO MATTER WHAT WAS GOING ON, I FELT GREAT COMPASSION FOR HER. EILEEN ASKED ME IF I REALISED THAT IT HAD BEEN 30 YEARS SINCE ALL THAT HAPPENED, DID I ACTUALLY REALISE THE SIGNIFICANCE OF THAT. COULD I PUT DISTANCE BETWEEN THEN AND NOW. I TRIED, IT WASNT EASY BUT I MANAGED IT.
AFTER DOING THAT HARD WORK WITH THE 5 YEAR OLD PART OF ME, I FELT OLDER, WISER, LIKE I COULD AGE. I AM 16. EILEEN SAID IT FELT LIKE I WAS OLDER THAN 16, SHE SAID I HAD MORE RESPONSIBILITY THAN A 16 YEAR OLD. I ASKED HER TO PUT AN AGE ON ME. SHE SAID 22. SO I WENT WITH THAT. I SAID I’D PROBABLY AGE UP SOON. SHE TOLD ME NOT TO DO IT IF I DIDNT FEEL LIKE IT, TO NOT PUT PRESSURE ON MYSELF TO DO IT. I SAID I’D HAVE TO ASK PERMISSION OF THE MOST HIGHS IN OUR SYSTEM BEFORE I COULD AGE. BUT THAT THEY’D PROBABLY GIVE ME PERMISSION SINCE I’VE BEEN WORKING HARD IN THERAPY THESE PAST FEW WEEKS. SO PROBABLY IN THE NEXT WEEK I WILL AGE TO 22. IT FEELS RIGHT. I FEEL LIKE AN ADULT. AND I CAN TAKE CARE OF 5 YEAR OLD ME IF I AM OLDER, WISER.
THERAPY IS HARD FUCKING WORK. THATS WHAT I THINK. I’M GLAD I HAVE A SPACE TO DO THE WORK, THAT FEELS SAFE AND THAT EILEEN IS ALONGSIDE ME ON MY JOURNEY.
its alicia. in case you didnt know i am 9 years old.
yesterday i had some time in therapy. the bigs decided i needed to talk. i like coming out to talk to my therapist eileen. but sometimes the things i need to talk about make me so sad.
like her adopting me. like the fact that i dont have an outside mom. we have a bio mom but she doesnt see me, recognise me as a person. she doesnt accept me for me, or even see me. its so sad.
so i came out in therapy. and i told eileen that i just want her and dr. barry as my two moms. i told her i will live with her for half of the week and dr. barry for the other half.
eileen: that would be nice wouldnt it?
me: yeah, i just need a mom. just be my mom.
eileen: i get that allie. i really do.
me: so why arent you being my mom?
eileen: i really hear your struggle, that no inside person will do.
me: crying, its not fair! i’m so tired of hearing about dr. barrys kids, of hearing how much she cares for and about them. nobody cares for me like that. why? am i so bad that nobody wants me?
eileen: you are not bad allie
me: do you think i am crazy? carol anne thinks i have an attachment disorder.
eileen: i’ve never heard of attachment disorder, i dont see you as a child with this or that disorder, i just see you as a little girl who is struggling with the fact that she never had a mom and she really wants one.
me: please adopt me, please? did you know i was thinking at the weekend, about what it would be like if i lived with you? i was thinking what we’d do together, like we could watch movies, or tv, and i was thinking, i wonder what eileen would cook for me? would she make rules? is that crazy?
eileen: no sweetheart it isnt.
me: dr barry made me so mad when i was in the hospital. because she told me she had to go home one evening to blow out the candles on her little boys birthday cake. but i want to do that. i want a birthday cake and a mom who wants to blow my candles out and let me make a wish, cheer for me, i want that too.
Eileen, squeezing my hand, I know. I hear that allie.
Me: My dad says i am just a job to you. that you get payed to listen to me. but that you dont think of me for the rest of the week. that i am just a job and not to forget it.
Eileen: you arent just a job to me. i think of you often throughout the week…when i hear a certain song, or see something that reminds me of you, or hear something on the tv…
me: eileen i dont want to just be a job!
eileen: of course you dont. of course. i hear that and i want you to know you arent just a job to me!
then i cried again. because of the unfairness of it all.
Eileen just hugged me. and told me i’d be ok. things will get better. but i said only if she adopted me, then they would.
alicia age 9
i really, really need to do something about my sleep pattern. i am not sleeping again. i was up at 4:30 AM yesterday morning, so you’d think by 9 PM last night I’d have been exhausted. and i was. i went to bed, and fell asleep without much trouble. i didnt even read my book. but i woke at 2:30 and that was it. i couldnt get back to sleep. i got up because i didnt see a point in lying there and just thinking, in my eyes thats a dangerous thing to do. so now i am up, drinking tea, contemplating having a shower, i have an early apt today, a 9 AM apt to see my nutritionist. today is weigh in day for me. i’ve been mostly good this week with what i’ve eaten. so i am hoping it will show on the scales. i am thinking my body only needs around 5 hours of sleep a night. its looking more and more like that since that is all i seem to get and i am able to function on that much sleep. i should probably engage in more sleep hygiene things. eileen wants me to take my tv out of my bedroom. i said i’d think about it but i am not wanting to do that. i love my tv. she says the magnetic field is messing with my brain. she also wants me to put my phone and computer out of my bedroom at night. again, nooooo. what if there is an emergency? i need my phone. i will put it on silent, that will have to do.
Do you find it hard to sleep? Do you have any tips or tricks? I’m all ears so tell me what works for you!
HI, ITS LIZ. YESTERDAY I WAS VERY TRIGGERED. I TRIED ALL DAY BUT THE FEELINGS WERE LINGERING. I DIDNT KNOW WHAT WOULD LESSEN THEM. IN THE END I TEXTED MY THERAPIST. THIS IS WHAT I SAID. EILEEN, I FEEL OVERWHELMED, I DONT KNOW WHAT TO DO, I CANT PUT WORDS ON IT, I JUST FEEL INCREDIBLY SAD, I’VE TRIED EVERYTHING BUT NOTHING IS WORKING, I REALLY NEED TO TALK TO YOU, CONNECT WITH YOU, LIZ. THAT WAS AT 5 PM. I HEARD NOTHING AND SO I LAY DOWN AND TRIED TO SLEEP. I KEPT MY PHONE NEXT TO ME JUST IN CASE SHE RESP9ONDED, I WAS HOPING SHE WOULD. THEN AT 8:30 A TEXT CAME IN FROM HER. IT READ, HI LIZZ, SORRY I COULDNT RESPOND EARLIER, HOW ARE YOU DOING NOW? INSTANTLY I FELT A LITTLE BIT BETTER. SHE HAD RESPONDED AFTER ALL. I TEXTED BACK AND TOLD HER THINGS HAD CALMED A LITTLE AND THAT I WAS OK AND WAS RESTING NOW BECAUSE OF LACK OF SLEEP THE PREVIOUS NIGHT. SHE TEXTED ME BACK AND TOLD ME TO HAVE A GOOD REST AND TO TAKE CARE OF MYSELF. I WISH WE COULD HAVE TEXTED MORE. BUT I AM HAPPY SHE RESPONDED AT TO ME LEAST. THAT VULNERABLE PART OF ME FELT HEARD, VALIDATED, AND THE TRIGGERED FEELINGS DISAPATED.
To my readers…Do my posts about therapy, and dr. Barry bore you? Or do you enjoy reading them? I am really interested in some feedback. If readers want to continue reading that stuff. I know I said I would only post it to my updates list, but then I thought, I havent asked for feedback or if people find those posts useful and enjoy them and reading about my appointments. So, do you? Please let me know! Its hard for me to know or gage that. Feedback comments on whether you would like to continue reading those sorta posts appreciated!