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I started working with a trauma-informed therapist a year and a half ago who quickly picked up my broken self and cradled her tenderly, all through a computer screen.
With a smile like Miss Honey from Matilda, she has made me feel seen and cared for since day one.
While her warmth at times feels like too much, and my eyes look everywhere but at hers, her way of being has always been kind.
It feels as if she takes her time gently sewing up the holes in my heart and being sure to check the patches every once in while to make sure they are still intact.
I remember during our first session feeling the little girls inside me pulling at my shirt in excitement, begging that I would pick her to be our therapist. So, I did just this, and it was truly the greatest decision I’ve ever made.
Over the last year and a half, my therapist has met all of me—the studious adult who reads nonstop and has an addiction to work, the four-year-old who cries and cries and doesn’t speak much, the seven-year-old with a life mission to find a mom, and the eight-year-old who cleans everything and tries to hide our truth so we look perfect.
No matter who shows up to session, my therapist is ready, and it truly amazes me. When I’m little, she calls me sweetheart and talks to me like no grownup ever did—like she wants to know what’s wrong and how she can help. When I’m an adult, like today, she helps me to say no and navigate work, school, and other adult experiences. I’m truly in awe of her ability to meet me every session where I am without criticism.
A year and half ago, I was at a point in my life that I was ready to be done with it. My psychologist had abandoned me, and the pain of it all crushed my heart and the hearts of all the little ones inside me. I would cry everywhere I went—grocery stores, school, and work. My voice was so faint that I would cry at Starbucks when asked to speak up in line.
I lost so much—my confidence, my smile, and my love for life.
Fast forward to today, and at an appointment with my psychiatrist, I’m told my voice is different.
I’m told I sound louder, older, and happier.
I giggle and talk about how lovely my Thanksgiving was.
I smile as I talk about my research studies and how I can’t stop writing.
I show teeth while smiling that my psychiatrist has never seen.
I feel good.
I feel more than good.
I feel I’m beginning to fall in love with my life again.
I never thought I’d see my 30th birthday. I’m looking forward to it this March and many more to come.
If you’ve ever been harmed by the mental health system, do know that it is never okay.
Do know that while they may not listen to you, there is a growing community around the world that will.
Join Drop the Disorder.
Join Survivors Against Borderline.
Find authentic trauma-informed therapists like mine.
There are good therapists out there who can help you heal.
It may just take some time to find Miss Honey.