My coworker is seeing my therapist with his wife for couples counselling.

This bothers me.

If I’m honest, that’s partially because I think of A as mine and only mine. I don’t like the idea that anybody else has her time, ever. Most of the time I can pretend that’s true (although what exactly I think she does with her time outside of session I don’t know. She clearly doesn’t just sit in her office waiting for me to return). But it’s kind of like a slap in the face or a cold shower – a wake up call of sorts – I can’t avoid the fact that she sees other people when it’s someone I know.

This coworker is someone who trusts me and tells me everything and that’s the other worry for me – that he is going to want to tell me all about his sessions. He also is a difficult person and I know A won’t put up with his shit. He wants someone to tell him he is right, and she won’t do that for him constantly. I don’t have the energy to hear him make jokes about her or tell me how much he hates her.

If there is one thing therapy and the therapeutic relationship has taught me it is that you never, ever, undermine another persons counsellor without very careful consideration of what you’re saying first. The relationships are powerful, they are valued, and they are personal.

I can’t hear him complain about her and that’s just a line I’ll have to draw with him.

Finally, there’s a 3% part of me that believes A’s amazing boundaries will falter. I intellectually know they won’t spend their time talking about me. But that doesn’t stop me from feeling like they might. Like they’ll spend all their time discussing how awful I am or my work habits or commitment or something. Or that she’ll tell him all my secrets. 

I know that’s a direct result of knowing my parents discussed me behind my back and feeling like family were plotting. I know it’s an important thing to bring up.
I really don’t like that they are seeing her and the worst part is I actively referred her (to his wife, who I think is basically a saint). So this is a problem of my own making. It’s literally a situation I created.

I also briefly considered that this is an attempt of mine to sabotage my relationship with A – try to get her to mess up or to use my coworker as an excuse to not have to feel anymore or to not have to see her anymore… it’s a vague notion I have but can’t seem to get any more out of it or get any further. We are at around the 5 month point where a lot of the emotional trust has been built and processing has to start happening. All the stuff I try to avoid. 

The more I connect with her the more I feel she is about to betray me and the more suspicious I am. The closest people in my life were always the ones I couldn’t trust, and they’d pull me in nice and close only to rip away at me again. 

Fascinating things to consider. Some real things to address. It has taken all my energy today to NOT ask him when their first session is.

I don’t want to share. Back off coworker, get your own therapist. 

PS – I realize how irrational parts of this are. I wanted to get out my feelings. 


25 thoughts on “I DON’T WANT TO SHARE

  1. So not irrational. Really, not irrational at all. I don’t want to share Bea. And actually, often times I like to pretend age just lives in her office, hanging out, answering my emails, waiting for me to come back to my sessions. In all seriousness though, I’m glad you are planning on speaking up. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I would not be able to stand a co-worker seeing my therapist. I know I’d experience all the fears and resentment and concerns you mentioned. (Glad to see that Rachel is STRONGLY encouraging you to speak up!)

    Once, years ago, I overlapped at my therapists’ office with someone I knew a little but not very personally (actually, she was my son’s special education teacher). It was okay because I couldn’t imagine we’d be talking about anything that connected. (I doubt she went to therapy to talk about my son, for example.) But even that shook me. It’s been a contributing reason to why I’ve resisted E’s invitations to join a women’s therapy group. What if I run into someone I know? Yuck.

    I hope you’ll follow up and let us know what comes of this.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I think it was your last post you talked about boundaries/deal-breakers we all have (such as phone/text for you) in therapy – this, this right here is one of mine. I would absolutely lose my mind if I “knew” anyone my therapist also saw. I could not do it. The sharing would elicit so much in me, I doubt I could tolerate it long enough to work through it.
    So I am struck by your maturity or openness or acceptance on this – out of curiosity, did he find her through you? Regardless of how reasonable you sound about it, this is a hard situation! My best for you moving forward in this. I hope you will talk to her about it, as much as needed.

    Liked by 2 people

    • It was my last post and I honestly think it might be mine too!

      This is entirely my fault, I gave her information to his wife. I guess I thought she would go alone? TBH, I don’t think I would mind that much but I WORK with him.

      I did not think that one through at all. Like, at all. I mean, he used to be my boss, so at least he isn’t that anymore? I am going to request he doesn’t share, and hope he respects that. And then just try to forget…

      At least I know it isn’t tonight (he vaguely mentioned them going on a Thurs) and I will be able to have this chat with her first.

      Ah, what a situation. I genuinely didn’t expect to be so upset but it appears I may be finding another boundary myself!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Did your therapist know that she got the information from you, when she agreed to see them? If not, perhaps she never would have agreed to it. I just see conflict of interest written all over this one. Seriously PD, they can see ANYONE else. ANYONE. Your therapist can still back out of it. Therapy is your safe place. YOUR SAFE PLACE. (why am I cyber yelling at you?) I think I just feel so strongly that this could be really upsetting, and unnecessarily so. She can always tell them she is full, and can’t see them ongoing, or whatever. She can get out of it. Even if you gave the contact info, it isn’t too late. If you realize this is a boundary for you that really is an issue.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I don’t think she knows – I meant to bring it up on Wed but didn’t get the chance. I will see her Tues and I will bring it up… because you’re right it is a thing for me.

        Haha also don’t worry about cyber yelling at me – as we’ve both mentioned we are pretty similar 🙂 so it is DEFINITELY (now I’m cyber yelling back) something I will address with her.

        I promiseeee and thank you for your fierce protective nature!

        Liked by 1 person

      • I would just be unable to let go of the thoughts “what if they talk about me? What if? Etc..” There is a reason why it is unethical for therapists to work with people who have a relationship, (unless it is a very small town, rural area, special population, etc). Dual relationships, conflict of interests, are not taken lightly. Given how you have described A, I doubt she would have said yes if she knew of the dual relationship up front. I know my therapist never would.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I think it will be handled and handled well by her – it just obviously brings up anxiety. I have two sessions next week so I will probably tell her about this on Tues, along with the blog and then use Wed to focus on some coping strategies (eye roll to self) for going home.

        Fiancé is away for two weeks now and I am painfully aware of my limitations when living alone so I wrote the letter and I’m going to try to table these emotions until I can address them Tuesday. There’s nothing I can do until then.

        It’s times like these I curse her boundaries!! (But still love them)

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ah, got it. I bet she will be glad to hear about it on Tuesday. I am so glad you wrote about it on here. To have time to process prior to your next meeting.
        What kinds of limitations? When are you leaving for your parents?
        The boundaries are tough! But so necessary. (even when they suck)

        Liked by 1 person

      • I leave the 7th of Sept and I’m living alone till then.

        I have to be careful to get enough sleep and not overwhelm and emphasize self care… basically my safety net is missing. My fiancé is my safe support person and not having 24/7 instant access to him makes me anxious. It can be a time I turn to unhelpful coping mechanisms.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Ah, I see. Yes living alone is pretty hard. A lot of time with the mind.. and not that safe person. I hope the next couple of weeks go okay, and I enjoy reading your posts (so I hope you will write about everything that comes up).

        Liked by 1 person

  4. “The more I connect with her the more I feel she is about to betray me and the more suspicious I am.”
    Just hours ago, I was literally having this exact discussion with my therapist. Not about the coworker, but about the fact that we are also at the 5 month (exactly!) point, and I’m finding myself feeling quite resistant because this is the point where J started to pull away (and where T and I are starting to build some kind of actual intimacy) and that’s scary. as. hell.
    I’m sorry about the coworker situation… I agree that it would be best to draw a line with your coworker of no talking about therapy. It’s important for their therapy and your therapy (but mainly your therapy. This is a time when you can focus on yourself and self care… it’s a time when you get to be ‘selfish’ (though it’s not actually selfish, I think you know what I mean!)). xxx

    Liked by 1 person

    • This is where I start to push buttons and resist and get angry and tell her she sucks – traditionally. It’s the point where I need incredible amounts of reassurance and repeated instances of “I am here for you and this relationship matters to me. You matter to me.”

      Thank you for your kind words – it’s my own fault and I do hope that it helps him – as that would mean I don’t hear him complain anymore 😉 but it is a situation of my own creation.

      I’m glad to have someone on the same timeline as me – these 5-10 months are so hard for me I find, nice to know I have a buddy.

      And yes I know what you mean – it’s an exercise in self care to be focusing on myself, and self care isn’t selfish in the negative way!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yes, we are timeline buddies 🙂 – the eight to nine-month mark will be terrifying for me, as it is when J decided to (and then did) ditch me. If I can make it past that, well, I know everything won’t be perfect, but I’m sure I will breathe a huge sigh of relief.
        Do you think you can tell your therapist “I’m really feeling the need for your reassurance right now” ? – I know that may sound hard / vulnerable / insert your choice of negative emotion, but that’s something that our blogger friend Rachel has recently taught me, and I’ve found it useful with T in the past couple weeks.

        Liked by 1 person

      • I was just thinking that (great minds?) and I believe I will probably print a version of this out and have her read it. I need her to know that I feel like pushing her away and that I need reassurance but I don’t trust the words.

        It is a good suggestion, Lily, and Rachel teaches me so much too. My heart is so full with our little WP collective. I’m so glad I found it.

        Liked by 1 person

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