How do I explain to my psychologist that I'm leaving?

Feelings and emotions regarding depression, anxiety and other health issues.

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SuperBlaster
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2016 8:50 pm

How do I explain to my psychologist that I'm leaving?

Postby SuperBlaster » Mon Jan 04, 2016 12:29 pm

I've been seeing my psychologist for 9 months, and I'm ready to move on although feeling saddened over it. I like him a lot, and always looked forward to our sessions, but I've very slowly come to realize that we may not have been good match. I started seeing him in March and immediately got a good vibe from him (his good looks undoubtely playing a part), which from what I've read online is important when choosing a psychologist. By the summer however, I started having doubts about whether we were really accomplishing anything.

My depression to date hasn't improved very much since seeing him. I eventually came to realize that I was brining up the same three subjects/issues every session, and that it just wasn't going anywhere. It seemed stupid to be seeing him weekly like I have been, and I always wondered why he didn't suggest we cut back on sessions. In November I finally brought up the possibility of leaving after we spent almost an entire session the previous week saying nothing to each other. He didn't seem surprised and didn't discourage me from ending things, but suggested that maybe I could find things that we could still work on that we hadn't resolved yet. I did, and things still don't seem to be going anywhere. I finally decided that I want to try working with the therapist who has been doing my TMS treatments instead, who seems to have a very different approach.


The fact that the psychologist I have been seeing is a seriously handsome guy and that he's a doctor with multiple degrees from a pricey university as opposed to being "just" a therapist like the previous person I worked with years ago I think may have blinded me to the fact that I wasn't being helped all that much, and I should either left in November or brought up my concerns much sooner. I do really think it is just a matter of a bad match rather than any lacking on his part, because I have always gotten the sense that he is good at what he does, but there just some lack of "connection" or understanding between the two of us

100footpole
Posts: 477
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2014 1:26 pm

Don't worry ... he'll understand

Postby 100footpole » Tue Jan 05, 2016 8:41 am

Tell your psychologist that you think you have plateaued with him, and want to try a different type of therapy. I'm not sure what brand of therapy your psychologist is using with you, but you might want to look at other brands - CBT - and ask him for a recommendation.

I wasted the price of a new car on a psychologist that was not helping me. I still have resentment toward that individual, and it has made it difficult to trust therapists again. You are paying for these folks to help you get better, and part of that is to make peace with yourself. I was in the same rut with my psychologist, and when I went to my next one they set up a plan to ween myself off therapy.

You should set up a hard and fast transition plan ... say no more than 3 or 4 more sessions before you move on for closure. If you get push back on this then cancel your sessions and move on ASAP ... your psychologist is being co-dependent.

Once you see a different therapist you can always re-consider your choice. Because of my history, I definitely believe you should try someone different / something new.

SuperBlaster
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2016 8:50 pm

Postby SuperBlaster » Tue Jan 05, 2016 5:09 pm

The psychologist I have been seeing is a CBT therapist. The therapist I want to see (an LPC who does my TMS treatments) is also a CBT therapist. I actually just had my first session with him as a therapist today, but my next (presumably final) session with my psychologist isn't until next week so I have yet to tell him what is going on. The LPC seems to have more of a "hands on" approach from what he's told me, whereas the psychologist I have been seeing takes a more passive approach. He's brought up a few times over the past nine months about how we needed to finally get down to business and create a concrete treatment plan, but it's never come to be. I just don't understand why things haven't worked out with him, and this has only added to my depression. He's obviously quite intelligent, he's well educated, I trust him and I like talking to him, but it just hasn't come to anything.

100footpole
Posts: 477
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2014 1:26 pm

Postby 100footpole » Wed Jan 06, 2016 12:30 pm

Congratulations on making what sounds like a good transition based on my experiences.

Have you ever talked with a really successful salesperson for a corporation? They are also intelligent, likable people. But, they are not un-biased, as illustrated with many a Dilbert cartoon :twisted: . I don't think that salespeople intentionally enter that mind set, and in fact a few times I have talked to people who have made it back alive, who regret "doing business" and "wheeling and dealing". I've also talked to people whose careers plateaued early because they weren't game players.

I think this phenomena is also true for psychologists and psychiatrists. At some point you become MORE successful by making decisions with your patients that seem more comfortable and supportive. The therapeutic practices I liked were more regimented. I think an ideal practice would have two or three practioners, and would transition clients between them. Caring and supportive is a definite must for initial contact, but IMO a therapist should be like a mother bird constantly pushing you to fly.

SuperBlaster
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2016 8:50 pm

Postby SuperBlaster » Tue Jan 12, 2016 7:48 pm

I broke it off with him today. I said I felt like we covered everything, and there wasn't anything else I thought he could do for me. Again he didn't seem surprised or concerned at all. He asked what was next for me (nothing really). He half-heartedly tried to make small talk for a minute before smiling ironically as if to say "we really don't have anything to talk about, do we? ". He wished me luck and told me to take care. I was out of his office in less than 10 minutes. I teared up a bit as I drove home. Now that it's officially over, and I've been reflecting on the last 9 months I'm pretty cynical about the whole thing and wary about talk therapy. It was overall a disappointing experience, but I think I was expecting way too much from it.

100footpole
Posts: 477
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2014 1:26 pm

Postby 100footpole » Thu Jan 14, 2016 9:22 am

Tell us how it goes with your next psychologists.

Your experience with talk therapy SO echoes mine ... I really think that maybe that psychologist is not a good person ... more of an enabler. But, he might have made a big difference in someone else's life ... Keep trying, keep in touch.

SuperBlaster
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Jan 03, 2016 8:50 pm

Postby SuperBlaster » Thu Jan 14, 2016 9:15 pm

I don't know if it was codependent exactly. I feel like I may be making this guy out to be worse than he really is. I have little experience with therapy/counseling and honestly can't really say what he was doing wrong or right. I was naive to be expecting my life to be changed just by talking to someone for 40 minutes a week. I know I was expecting more insight into my problems from him because of his lofty education and "15 years of diverse experiences", but anyone picked off the street could have told me what he did. There was also never a sense that we were working toward any goal. He began every session with "So...What's goin' on?", as if he expected to be bored with whatever banal problem I was dealing with that week.

100footpole
Posts: 477
Joined: Fri Oct 03, 2014 1:26 pm

Postby 100footpole » Fri Jan 15, 2016 9:41 am

Think of yourself as a sports free agent with a long career ahead of you. :lol:

Think of your psychologist as a coach.

It is your job to process and integrate the coach's instruction. It is the coach's job to understand what they are coaching and to give you advice and exercises to get better. If the advice or exercises aren't working it is the coach's job to change it up. Your job as an athlete is to follow the coach's guidance, your job as a free agent is to get the best coaching you can.

When you wrote:
I feel like I may be making this guy out to be worse than he really is.


You kind of imply that there was something you could have changed.

Keep in mind that this relationship is a professional one ... not a personal one. Think of the difference between "therapeutic massage" and "erotic massage". For therapeutic massage you are paying money for a benefit. For "erotic" massage you are paying for some kind of simulation, which society at least denigrates, and which may be illegal.

When you feel:
I started having doubts about whether we were really accomplishing anything.


with your psychologist ask them what they think should be happening. If they don't have goals for the therapy ... well then in my mind that psychologist is giving you an "erotic massage". If you don't think the psychologist is effective than they are not giving you the "therapeutic massage" you need. Ask them to try something different.

It's your money. You need to be getting a benefit ... not a paid friend.


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