Karen answers Elizabeth A

Comment by Elizabeth A. on November 23, 2008 3:17 am

Dear Karen,

I was thrilled at the end when you and the doctor hug. All through the book I was frustrated with his not caring to hug you. My therapist hugs me, what’s the big deal? I never thought this was a big deal until reading Switching Time. Now I feel uncomfortable and had to address it in therapy wasting a whole two sessions talking about it. Did your doctor believe himself higher than God or was he just a cold fish?

Elizabeth A.
South Bend, IN

Dear Elizabeth,

For someone like me and you, we ususally can’t understand and see what the big deal is? Therapists are trained to believe this act could harm the therapeutic relationship.  Maybe in some cases it could. I’m not sure.  For me, this was a nagging frustration that I believed hurt more than helped at the time.  I never felt worthy enough.  Not being hugged, a simple touch, left me feeling sad.  Now, years after the therapeutic relationship ended, I can see why hugging could’ve been a bad idea, especially since I had within me many alters who may have taken a simple hug in the wrong way.

Being hugged during the midst of therapy could’ve been taken as an attack, put an awkward strain on the therapy, caused feelings of abuse, or maybe even taken as a seduction attempt.

Looking back, I am glad Dr. Baer didn’t hug me during therapy.  Why?  Because if he did hug me, I may have stopped therapy altogether and not healed.  I’ll never know for sure.  However, what I do know is that he didn’t hug me and I stayed in therapy through to the end.  Maybe those things are connected.  Dr. Baer felt he knew what was best for me, before I understood his reason for not hugging me, and although I may have felt hurt, he did what he thought was right.

It’s important that you continue to discuss your concerns and thoughts with your therapist.  I am not a therapist and can’t give advice, but from what you have shared, it appears to have become an issue that needs to be addressed.

Dr. Baer never acted like he was higher than God.  Dr. Baer treated me with the utmost respect, and through him I have learned appropriate and ethical boundaries that will continue to help me as I continue my journey through life.

I wish you the best as you continue your healing,

Karen

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