Jump to content
Mental Support Community

Transference Vs. Feelings in the Here and Now


Recommended Posts

I have spoken about being terminated last August. I get that I have abandonment fears, etc.

But can't I have emotions that were real in the moments about being with a therapist for 7 years, and then getting terminated? Aren't those feelings that I felt valid, and not just "simply transference"? Some of it may be transference, but if I didn't have issues, then terminating with a therapist could still be painful, and my emotions wouldn't be pushed off as transference. I want to validate that I can have transference but still really be upset about termination without someone taking that away from me. I know no one can take it away from me, though. I don't know if that makes sense or not? Thanks!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi, Tsunami,

I'm sorry that somebody tries to invalidate your feelings by saying "it's transference" :(. (Who does?) Transference is a term to name a process which, among other things, leads to some feelings, but it doesn't mean that your feelings wouldn't be real (that's also what my ex-therapist told me, but it's also in some articles - I'd like to find them out again to share, but I don't remember now where I saw them...). You can't ignore them just because you know that there is or might be some transference involved. I'd love to tell you a hint how to face and overcome the abandonment fears, but it seems I can't, because I still struggle with mine (I terminated in October 2011). I've done some rather silly things (trying to communicate with my ex-T, being sad or angry that he doesn't reply, ... ) and I'm still not recovered, although I had some times when it seemed I already was.

Edited by LaLa3
small changes
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Just by the way (as this thread is not about me): I consider this concept to be interesting, but it's not my case. I don't even feel I need to be with him, I just would like to know if he's OK (I mean... "healthy and not suffering") and I'd like to know how he feels about me and what he thinks about me now, because when I don't, I can't help but "fantasize" about the possibilities (and I imagine mostly quite sad and/or very negative things). I tell myself it doesn't matter what he thinks or feels and I know it, but sometimes I just can't not feel sorry that "it ended like this - he hating me and me often not wanting to see him ever again". I'd love to have a "normal" end - as of the kind as it seemed to be shortly after the termination, when I felt so good about it.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Lala,

I am new to posting this much here, although I have been here for a bit. I hope you will share whatever it is that you wanted to share, because I think this is about all of us. Just because I started the thread, I want everyone to feel free to veer from the topic, as sometimes happens, or to share one's story about the topic. I think it is all good as long as we are all pushing forward.:)

I get triggered on another site by this one person in particular. She reminds me of my xTherapist at times. She said something pertaining to if the situation is transference, and is simply being triggered in the present, . . . .

This is where I am having trouble. Simply? Plus, if it is being triggered in the present, okay, I can deal with that. However, there is also a here and now, and emotions are added onto a past trigger or are just there from the here and now if the therapist/client are in a reenactment and the therapist is doing the same thing that has been done before.

I am having trouble validating how I feel myself, and it is maddening. My therapist now has said that validating my emotions is one of the main goals basically, because I get confused inside and have to look elsewhere at this point to make sure my emotions are valid, that I was hurt and in pain, and that I was angry and enraged. So, I guess I grew up in a non validating environment and have not yet overcome. I am getting better at feeling my emotions are valid, but it is still a struggle.

Then there is that my past termination, just when I think I have a hold on it, it comes back with a vengeance, and I am angry/enraged again. My therapist told me that I have a right to be angry, so I'm trying to go with that.

I often wish I could see my xTherapist just so I can get things straight and I don't have to wonder. But if he thinks it is all transference, then his job is done. :( I don't want therapy again with him, I just would like to figure things out. Oh well, I guess. I feel really sad now.

I have just kind of rambled on, I hope I made some sense somewhere:) lol

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Does it feel like the person "has" a part of you, and that you need to be with that person to feel that part or to get it back?

That can be the feeling of transference, and it can produce very real pain feeling split apart like that.

I don't deny that it is transference, I just think that the pain was also caused by what he did/didn't do. Your question is intriguing, and I don't know the answer. I know I still feel controlled by him because I have emotional flashbacks from being terminated that pop up. I don't remember, or have a lot of difficulty recalling the times when we were connected.

Can you explain more about this? I'm really not sure if that it what is going on, but it is a possibility. Thank you!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi, Tsunami,

I'm sorry that somebody tries to invalidate your feelings by saying "it's transference" :(. (Who does?) Transference is a term to name a process which, among other things, leads to some feelings, but it doesn't mean that your feelings wouldn't be real (that's also what my ex-therapist told me, but it's also in some articles - I'd like to find them out again to share, but I don't remember now where I saw them...). You can't ignore them just because you know that there is or might be some transference involved. I'd love to tell you a hint how to face and overcome the abandonment fears, but it seems I can't, because I still struggle with mine (I terminated in October 2011). I've done some rather silly things (trying to communicate with my ex-T, being sad or angry that he doesn't reply, ... ) and I'm still not recovered, although I had some times when it seemed I already was.

It wasn't done to purposeful try to invalidate my feelings, I was the one that was triggered, although at times it seems this poster is pointing in my direction (on another board). My problem is that I feel that my xT thinks it was ALL transference, when the last few months were very painful, some due to transference, some due to what he was doing. Of course, I don't know what he is thinking.

Lala,

You are not alone, I also struggle with abandonment fears, and it is debilitating at times. ((((Hugs))))) BTW, I don't find the things you did as silly, I find them things you did because you were in pain. Your abandonment fears didn't come out of nowhere, you didn't decide one day, Okay, I think I'll have abandonment fears. There is no shame in how you feel. :wub:

I am trying to move on, and I am doing better, but I am not perfect by any means:) I WILL MAKE IT THROUGH!

Thanks for the replies, they were very helpful:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sorry you're feeling sad, Tsunami. :(

I had a strong and positive response to my therapist in therapy. Even now, years later, I still having loving feelings toward him. I also wanted my feelings validated. I used to be set off by the word 'transference' but not any longer. I believe now that transference is a part of all relationships and it really can offer a gold mine of information about us. Possibly your feelings are a mix of here and now and transference. Maybe the specifics of words aren't as important, though, as learning about what it all means about you. What do you think?

Take care.

Edited by IrmaJean
adding
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I believe there are gifts hidden in situations like this, because others have shown me that there are (mainly in therapy).

You are discovering you in this process.

How are you feeling controlled today? What is out of your power?

I feel like I am going crazy. I feel like people aren't posting things pointing in my direction, but that I am just paranoid and triggered and get lost in that. I feel depressed, and have, and I hate my life, with the exception of my child. I feel like I have to work so hard just to get along with people irl, it is like I don't have a clue about social skills. I hate my job, but I am so anxious, so afraid, and am afraid to change jobs because I will follow myself wherever I go. I hate myself. I hate being attached to people, so that when they take a deserved vacation, it is upsetting, I hate that. I hate having BPD, I hate being me.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I'm sorry you're feeling sad, Tsunami. :(

I had a strong and positive response to my therapist in therapy. Even now, years later, I still having loving feelings toward him. I also wanted my feelings validated. I used to be set off by the word 'transference' but not any longer. I believe now that transference is a part of all relationships and it really can offer a gold mine of information about us. Possibly your feelings are a mix of here and now and transference. Maybe the specifics of words aren't as important, though, as learning about what it all means about you. What do you think?

Take care.

I think I want a father, although I don't know why. I understand that I have transference issues, however, sometimes it feels like that word itself is invalidating, as if because the feelings come from long ago that they are no longer valid. I have issues with FEELING invalidated, so I get this is me. I don't want to be who I am. I am not happy. Thanks for your reply.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I understand that I have transference issues, however, sometimes it feels like that word itself is invalidating, as if because the feelings come from long ago that they are no longer valid.

I have a comparison: You may develop a phobia based on a particular traumatizing experience in your childhood. So when a situation triggering the phobic fear occurs, then you feel the fear and you know it "comes from the past", but does it mean that the fear isn't "real", that you can just tell yourself "I don't actually feel a fear, I just have a reaction based on a past trauma"? In my opinion, no. I think it's the same with transference. Nevertheless, it's possible to get rid of a phobia and it's possible to get rid of the painful consequences of transference. (Just don't ask me how :P.)

I hate having BPD, I hate being me. [...] I don't want to be who I am. I am not happy.

I'm sorry :(. And I'm sorry I don't have anything useful/helpful to say. (I can relate, that's all. There were times when I posted optimistic texts based on my good experiences with overcoming these feelings/states. Not now. Maybe sometimes later (?)... In any case; I'd love to watch your progress, success in the meantime ;).)

Edited by LaLa3
small changes
Link to comment
Share on other sites

All feelings are valid. That's not up for discussion, or shouldn't be.

What can shift is our interpretation. No interpretation is allowed to invalidate what it interprets, though, so anything starting with "that's just ..." is already something other than an interpretation, such as a dismissal or an attempt by someone to get you to feel what they want you to, instead of what you do feel.

We can start with your feeling of being invalidated: that's valid too. It's absolutely certain that you were invalidated. What's more difficult is now to assign that feeling its interpretation. Is it happening now, or is it a remembered feeling?

Who do you want to be, instead? And ... is the person you're callling "you" changeable? If you believe that this "you" is "bad" (in whatever sense), it's not hard to understand why you might think she can't change. But if you can separate the person from their actions, you start to give yourself permission to do different things, things that bring you closer to being who you want to be, while still remaining you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I want to validate that I can have transference but still really be upset about termination without someone taking that away from me. I know no one can take it away from me, though.

Is the bind you are in needing the validation to come from the person that hurt you?

I can share with you that I have plenty of pain from primary relationships that did not attach securely. When this gets triggered, I feel very crazy. It hurts. There is no rest.

With help, I have learned a few ways to take care of myself when this stuff gets stirred up. In my situation, I had to let go of hope that I would get validation from the persons that related poorly to me. I had to very carefully address how I was relating to myself in these times, and I often needed help being kind to me. I still need help at times.

I am only sharing in case any of this is helpful.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I feel like I am going crazy. I feel like people aren't posting things pointing in my direction, but that I am just paranoid and triggered and get lost in that. I feel depressed, and have, and I hate my life, with the exception of my child. I feel like I have to work so hard just to get along with people irl, it is like I don't have a clue about social skills. I hate my job, but I am so anxious, so afraid, and am afraid to change jobs because I will follow myself wherever I go. I hate myself. I hate being attached to people, so that when they take a deserved vacation, it is upsetting, I hate that. I hate having BPD, I hate being me.

I hear your frustration, Tsunami. Life can certainly be challenging and overwhelming at times. It's hard and you hurt. :( Can you perhaps hold something of the person you are attached to (a photo or object perhaps) when they go away on vacation? Maybe that would help you to feel connected?

I think I want a father, although I don't know why. I understand that I have transference issues, however, sometimes it feels like that word itself is invalidating, as if because the feelings come from long ago that they are no longer valid. I have issues with FEELING invalidated, so I get this is me. I don't want to be who I am. I am not happy. Thanks for your reply.

I hear you when you say the word itself feels invalidating. Your feelings all belong to you, they are all real, and it's good to acknowledge and respect them. Healing work can be a long and difficult road. Can you think of some ways to connect with and comfort yourself?

We're here to listen. I hope it helps to express your feelings.

Take care.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have a comparison: You may develop a phobia based on a particular traumatizing experience in your childhood. So when a situation triggering the phobic fear occurs, then you feel the fear and you know it "comes from the past", but does it mean that the fear isn't "real", that you can just tell yourself "I don't actually feel a fear, I just have a reaction based on a past trauma"? In my opinion, no. I think it's the same with transference. Nevertheless, it's possible to get rid of a phobia and it's possible to get rid of the painful consequences of transference. (Just don't ask me how :P.)

Lala, Thanks! That makes sense:) I was upset over something someone on another board wrote (another site), and I told a friend, and I was totally in the transference, ironically, I guess you could say:) I have emotional flashbacks and I get lost in them and sometimes I don't notice it until I am out of it. A lot of things with my xT are coming up, but I am just starting to be able to look past my xT to way before him, whereas, before all of my rage was centered on him. I don't know if I will ever get there, but maybe at least I can viscerally realize that all of this pain started a long time ago.

I'm sorry :(. And I'm sorry I don't have anything useful/helpful to say. (I can relate, that's all. There were times when I posted optimistic texts based on my good experiences with overcoming these feelings/states. Not now. Maybe sometimes later (?)... In any case; I'd love to watch your progress, success in the meantime ;).)

I am feeling much better, and I know that I am going to make it through. Being mindful helps me, we'll have to talk sometime:) Thanks so much for your post! :)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

All feelings are valid. That's not up for discussion, or shouldn't be.

What can shift is our interpretation. No interpretation is allowed to invalidate what it interprets, though, so anything starting with "that's just ..." is already something other than an interpretation, such as a dismissal or an attempt by someone to get you to feel what they want you to, instead of what you do feel.

We can start with your feeling of being invalidated: that's valid too. It's absolutely certain that you were invalidated. What's more difficult is now to assign that feeling its interpretation. Is it happening now, or is it a remembered feeling?

Who do you want to be, instead? And ... is the person you're callling "you" changeable? If you believe that this "you" is "bad" (in whatever sense), it's not hard to understand why you might think she can't change. But if you can separate the person from their actions, you start to give yourself permission to do different things, things that bring you closer to being who you want to be, while still remaining you.

My therapist tells me that my therapy is a lot about validating my emotions. He said that in people with BPD, that often it forms from being in an invalidating environment. Thanks for the reminder.:) It's interesting that you mention "that's just" as invalidating, because that will trigger me in a heartbeat, and has. Good point on the I was absolutely invalidated, thank you, and it was a memory, an emotional flashback, and my self-hatred was a part of that.

The me is changeable. I have dissociated self-states, a child-part that doesn't do well with abandonment, a saboteur (or self-hatred part), and well, me:) I know I can change, I had a session today, about which I might start another thread. Thank you so much! I appreciate you!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

AND I want to add, I am so sorry if something I said was hurtful to you. :(

Finding, I am so sorry if anything I said even appeared to hurt me, I found your posts very helpful! I promise that if you or anyone says anything I find hurtful, that I would say, when you said _______ I wasn't sure what you meant? or something like that. And I hope if I ever hurt someone else, that they will do the same.

As a matter of fact, today when I got on, I specifically went to your post and I read this: "I believe there are gifts hidden in situations like this, because others have shown me that there are (mainly in therapy)."

This statement really made a difference! Last session, my therapist said he was going on a four-week vacation, which I will talk about in another thread but anyone can talk about it here, too. I was really low last night, and I saw my therapist today and he validated all of my feelings and fears about him going on vacation, and in the past this has been difficult due to abandonment fears. Today, after we met, I have confidence that I will make it, so you were right, there is a gift in this vacation, it is to show me that I can do this and I can handle my unruly emotions. So, I wanted to thank you:)

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tsunami, I am so very sorry for your pain :( :(

this is another approach to try:

can you say "I hurt," or what ever feeling you are feeling

without hating you for hurting or having that feeling?

I think that is a good idea. When I express that part of me, I hope it isn't scary for others. It is something I am working on in therapy, I call it my saboteur, or self-hatred part. It doesn't have the stronghold that it used to have, I try to use mindfulness meditation when it emerges. The problem is, it hates my feelings of neediness and other feelings. Basically I think its function is to invalidate me from within. Thank you for caring.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Is the bind you are in needing the validation to come from the person that hurt you? Yes, definitely at times!

I can share with you that I have plenty of pain from primary relationships that did not attach securely. When this gets triggered, I feel very crazy. It hurts. There is no rest. ((((Finding)))))) I hear you loud and clear!

With help, I have learned a few ways to take care of myself when this stuff gets stirred up. In my situation, I had to let go of hope that I would get validation from the persons that related poorly to me. I had to very carefully address how I was relating to myself in these times, and I often needed help being kind to me. I still need help at times. Me, too! It is difficult letting go, but I know you are right! I also need to be kind to me, you have been very helpful. I so appreciate you sharing your story! I love that you have taken your past and are now helping others:) I want to do that, too. Take care, Finding.

I am only sharing in case any of this is helpful. It was absolutely helpful, as are all of your posts. I appreciate you.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Whew!!! so glad you are ok, Tsunami :) I was worried I'd triggered you!!

I have parts too. Today when I feel I hate myself, I take that as a waving flag that I really need to tune in and take care of myself. Sometimes that means getting help.

In relating to others it can sometimes feel that we are the problem, that we are all wrong for the situation. Then there is no ground to stand on, and the mind goes on overdrive and won't stop with trying to hack away at ourselves to "make things right."

Taking a step back in those times can help. When I ask for help, it is usually so I can get help taking that step back and gaining some perspective. Then I can listen to the feelings, the thoughts, without being swallowed up by them. Being truly heard, by myself or with the help of others, allows me to get unstuck, and the feelings and thoughts shift.

Let us know if we can help during your therapist's vacation!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tsunami, you mentioned that the phrase "that's just ..." bothered you, earlier in the thread, which is why I used it as an example. I'm good, but I'm not clairvoyant. ;-)

I think it's valuable that you're willing to explore these validation issues by talking to others. You're going to get all kinds of opinions, simply because we're all different, and just sorting through your responses to those will help you to better interpret what you feel. It's not meant to change what you feel, just to give you the chance to decide what you want to do with what you feel.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

×
×
  • Create New...