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Proper big crush on therapist(28 Posts)
Just as it says really. Yes I can rationalise it - he's the only person who listens to me, he is kind and non judgmental and affirmative and I am clearly projecting all kinds of shit onto him; poor bastard. I also know that I would never want anything to happen between us and that this is just a fantasy. Which I have been enjoying, in my own little way. But I've noticed that I'm thinking these thoughts more and more and they are making me uncomfortable. How do I stop?
He isn't a psychotherapist btw as I know that for some that's expected in that line. Was supposed to be a short term nhs fix but has gone on for longer and become more involved. Please help me kick my rational brain in.
Is it not that thing called transference?
I've only ever read about it but it seems to be quite common, I don't know how you would deal with it but I'll give your post a bump.
Thanks unborn yes I'm pretty sure it's transference - I've been googling and have found out it happens a lot in psychotherapy and some people say it can be useful when you're in it for the long run as psychotherapy is. Just a bummer that it's happened with a different type of therapy for me.
I don't want to transfer to someone else. The work I've been doing with him is immensely useful. I've had loads of counselling and interventions over the years and this time it's really working. Which I'm sure is at least partly why I'm having these feelings. But then I wonder if my reluctance to ask for someone else is because I have this crush. But then he is genuinely helping me like noone has before and I do want to get better.
It's a mess.
It's a mess.
That alone tells you that you need a different therapist OP, its helping right now but as the transference develops the therapy will become less effective because of your thought processes
Hope you manage to get it sorted though
6. Erotic transference and countertransference are common
Feelings of “love” within the counselling and therapy relationship, either from the client’s side or the therapist’s side, are not a bad thing; some would argue they are inevitable given the emotionally intimate nature of therapy. For example, a survey in 2006 found that 90% of psychotherapists reported being sexually attracted to a client on at least one occasion. Working through these feelings can help the client understand and accept their own relationship with love and desire and what was missing for them in their early life that they are seeking to compensate for in the present.
7. It is the therapist’s duty to respond appropriately
The main problem with erotic transference/countertransference in therapy is the therapist’s level of ability to appropriately address and contain these issues and feelings for their client, or when the therapist chooses to act upon the feelings they experience for the client. However, it is the client’s privilege to act out their feelings for their therapist; it is the therapist’s responsibility to do the opposite.
If it is solely your issue and your counsellor is good then you don't need to leave. He may well be able to handle this in a way that helps you to move on in life and feel loved in a safe place with someone else in real life. By allowing you to experience feelings with him while he keeps his boundaries firm.
I honestly have had a major breakthrough with him though - you know, a whole different way of looking at things, a different diagnosis that when being worked through as it is now is giving me real tangible results that are having a positive and healthy impact on me in all areas of my life.
I just wish I could stop my mind running on.
It doesn't help that he has also shared personal things with me (appropriately and in context) - it has been an emotional and gruelling process and I get that he's human too and will respond in a human way. But my own emotions are getting very big.
Thanks isadora - that is very helpful. Sorry, I was replying to justanother there. I know that what I am feeling is because what has been stirred up which has left me without my normal ballast. But I still feel these powerful emotions.
If he was a psychotherapist I would probably discuss it with him
But he isn't - this is a different kind of therapy, albeit that because of the issues he's uncovered and is working on with me the therapy itself has taken a different shape
OP have you mentioned this to him? I would do so to get it out in the open as, as others have said, this is definitely transference. You say he's a different kind of therapist (can you expand on that)? but that the therapy has already taken a different shape. If he is not qualified or equipped to deal with what he has uncovered with you - and to work through this transference, then he should be referring you on anyway, so that you can properly - and safely - work through this. If he is, then it could form another breakthrough for you in your therapy. It's not unusual at all to have these feelings for your therapist and you sound pretty clear on why it's happening, so i'm pretty confident you will know what to do if you can bring yourself to share this with him. Good luck!
Handsoff no I haven't spoken to him about my crush. He is experienced in the areas he has uncovered which is why I feel lucky to have landed with him - I have had breakthrough, epiphanal insights as a result of this. When I say that then of course it makes sense that I would latch onto him in this way. But at the same time I feel so stupid and predictable and I don't want to go off on a tangent - I want to keep my focus on the good progress we are making.
I hear that OP but, whichever way you look at it, your 'crush' is going to get in the way of making progress with your other stuff. You're already focusing on feeling 'stupid and predictable' (which you absolutely are NOT btw). Even without knowing the details of what the other stuff is, the feelings this has all evoked in you is all part of that in some way. If you get it out in the open, and the therapist is worth his salt, then it shouldn't take you off on a tangent at all, but rather enrich the therapy. What's the real fear behind telling him how you're feeling?
If he is a counsellor of any sort he really shouldn't be sharing his stuff with you much at all. If he is working within his limitations he needs to be aware of how you're feeling and be the one to hold the boundaries firm for you both. If you have any doubt that he can do this it isn't safe for you to continue. However if you feel he is able to be boundaried and the work is there. Maybe have a mini review and make sure your goals are on track and your work is focussed to help you avoid moving into crush stuff... if that makes sense?
What is he if not a therapist?
Of course there is always the possibility you actually fancy him in a normal girl boy sort of way? And you would fancy him if you met elsewhere? It does happen.
If so, you have no chance of getting a ratonal head on. Your rational head gets left behind when basic instinct gets involved.
Ofcourse he could be able to reccomend a colleague. If your not planning on acting on it and you don't think he feels the same do you think it could actually affect your professional relationship?
I actually fell for someone as an inpatient. I'm now married to him and pregnant, so I'm probably not one to give advise on such matters.
That made I larf....
Were you the Doctor and them the patient?
Handsoff you are very perceptive (are you a therapist? (you don't have to answer)). I suppose the crux of it is that what's stopping me is that I'm embarrassed. And the reason I'm embarrassed is because even though I know it's transference it still feels real to me, so I guess part of me is responding in a real life way (ie embarrassed) rather than in the context of therapy.
Unborn - congratulations on your baby!
(I hope you understand though when I say I will not be going down that route.)
Itsnot both patients. Not the same as doctor/patient but still quite discouraged. I got kicked out the hospital because of it.
OP, this happened to me.
I killed it stone dead by telling him.
I think a little piece of him died inside having to have a cosy chat about me (38 and married) having 'thoughts' about him (65 and married).
Talking about it was literally like taking a great big pin and popping a ridiculous balloon that didn't really exist in the first place.
(I still cringe for him now, having to have that conversation).
Howareyou thanks so much for sharing that. These feelings really are ridiculous and actually just imagining having that conversation and the outcome you describe puts it in perspective.
Personally, I think that the fact you are making so much progress is the important thing.
For me, I have a trauma history and issues related to that which meant that forming a straightforward attachment to my therapist was complicated. I appreciate this may be different from your situation as you talk about a shorter term therapy, whereas I am in long term psychotherapy - but actually I don't think it's helpful to attach rules about what should or shouldn't happen according to type of therapy or length. The heart feels what the heart feels.
I can only say, that falling in 'trust''/becoming securely attached to my therapist felt an awful lot like falling in love. It was only when I really examined my feelings that I understood the difference - I didn't actually care about my therapist's personal life/feelings/social life etc...so it wasn't a genuine attraction.
I can honestly say that our therapeutic relationship is better and more effective for not 'hiding' this secret from him (which turned out not to be a real thing anyway).
That totally rings true. I do care about him in that I connect with the experiences he's shared - which he has only done to normalise my own experiences, but as I know he's been through similar I can feel empathy for him. But thinking of him as a fully fledged participant in a relationship, with his own thoughts and feelings and desires ..? Nope, not interested. I just feel an impetus for something to happen that is an expression of the thoughts I have, as though they have to go somewhere. But actually when I think about the mechanics of that - even for eg if we were to kiss - then that involves him having agency, and that's not what I'm after.
Ha! It really is all about me!
I have very little experience, but I know that I deliberately chose a much older therapist in the hopes that I wouldn't become attracted to him - so I was aware before I started therapy that it might become an issue.
I ended up 'feeling' like that anyway, but in fact I think it was an expression of unmet needs from my past. All I can say is that talking about it made it go away - before that it was the elephant in the room, I pretended to myself that I only went to therapy to see him. The truth was, I went to therapy because I was messed up. The 'fancying my therapisst' narrative was just easier to accept than my past...
I hope that make sense.
Also - I started 'short term' therapy for depression and had no idea how complicated my issues were..
OP... 'in training' ..just completed my qualification so a novice!
Think Howareyou may have hit the nail on the head 'though!
Keep us posted how it goes. When are you seeing him next?
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