Last night I decided to make a therapy room on Animal Crossing. I had enough bits and pieces of furniture to play with. I turned my beach chair into a Freudian couch. I am really pleased with how it looks.
I have sat in a room like this (minus the Freudian couch) every week for the past decade. It has become comforting, a space for me. A space where I am free to spill my mind without being judged, a space where it feels safe to connect with another human being, and a space where somebody sees the real me. At times though it has almost been the end of me. That is why I added the scull “welcome” sign, which I think a lot of people would understand for their own reasons, whether they’ve had crap therapists, have been taken into the scary depths of their past and their mind, or have been damaged by therapy in other ways. For me, therapists have lured me in with the promise of unconditional love and understanding, with everything I’ve ever longed for in my life, then spat me out mangled while they move on with their lives unruffled. Honestly I’m not sure whether therapy helps or harms me more. In my last session I commented how I withdrew from everything such as study and friends since starting therapy. I also became clinically depressed. It has not made it easier to connect with people, rather the opposite. When I was studying I came across a sociological paper arguing that therapy makes people narcissistic, or along those lines. I’m not sure I’ve become “narcissistic”, but I do think that perhaps therapy has set an unrealistically high bench for other relationships. Therapists give us their undivided attention. They seek to understand us and help us. We don’t get to see them in their real lives so we cannot collect the necessary information that will either erode our love for them or allow it to develop into a more balanced and mutual attachment. So we are left suspended in the moment of loving them indefinitely. We don’t get to see them warts and all. We don’t see they are a flawed human being just like us. No other relationship is like this. People get bored, tired, grumpy, selfish, judgmental and self-absorbed. Therapists bring the best parts of themselves into the room, and it’s easy to view them as some kind of superhuman.
Despite all the harm therapy has caused me, I continue to open up to professionals. There is one professional in my life right now who I love in particular. He’s funny, smart, caring, empathetic and bossy when he needs to be. I have been seeing him for years and I feel he knows me better than anyone. I don’t know what I’d do without him. Therapy has been such a big part of my life. It is my refuge, and I am delighted to have a therapy room on Animal Crossing now (not that any of my residents would need it on my happy, idyllic little island). I would have used the big upstairs room and divided the room into a waiting room and therapy room using partition walls, but these are only unlockable when you have Happy Home Paradise installed.
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