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my therapist made me feel horrible


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Please let me vent..I saw my "therapist" today for the fifth and final time. I wasn't sure if she was right for me, but I was giving it time. Well, today's session really hurt me.

First of all, I told her I felt worse since I last saw her last month. I asked her if she could give me some exercises or ideas to improve my thinking and help my self esteem. She then asked me if I was still going to AA meetings, which I am. She said that I can get that through working AA, which is supposed to help you deal with life on life's terms. Which is somewhat true. I told her that I have problems that are outside the "expertise" of AA (i.e. severe anxiety and depression). Even my sponsor and wise AA friends told me this.

Then she asked me if I was exercising. I said I was having a hard time due to severe fatigue, plus my living situation. I can't afford to join a gym. I used to go for walks when my daughter is at school, but I can't take her on a long walk with me. I live in Florida and it's much to hot, humid, and rainy. When my husband gets home from work, he could watch her but he goes to bed early due to his schedule.

Her response-- "You are making so many excuses. You are just lazy."

I was taken aback. I said I am not lazy. Then she switched the subject to how she hadn't gotten paid for any of my visits yet from my insurance, and she can't give free therapy. I told her I gave her all my insurance info and she needed to call to get it authorized. She said she didn't have the info so she stopped our "therapy" to call the insurance to verify my info and such. Meanwhile, I just sat there crying. She just said, "Don't worry I won't send you a big bill, they said they will take the claims". This took about 15 minutes.

I still didn't know what to say. Tears just streamed down my face. It was then the end of my allotted time. She said to call her to make my next appointment and we would straighten the insurance out.

I just nodded and left. I cried the whole way home. She called me lazy! Right after I told her all my fears about my financial situation not knowing how I'm going to pay my bills as I'm filing for disability she brings up how my insurance hasn't paid her.

I know I should have stood up for myself. I feel so weak. But I needed time to think about this. I want to fire her, but I don't want to see her face ever again. I will have to call her. Since all her calls go to voicemail, I will have to leave her a message. But I don't even know what to say!

Do you think I'm just too sensitive? Was she totally out of line? I mean, her brother died a few weeks ago unexpectedly, and I told her I was sorry for her loss, but I feel she was out of line and has not helped me, and today she hurt my feelings.

Thanks

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She was totally out of line.   Totally.   You did nothing wrong;   I would have found it hard to be assertive in that situation, too.

 

Two major things wrong:   Calling you lazy!  That is so ill-informed.  Does she not realize that when someone is depressed and anxious they can barely get out of bed some days, much less EXERCISE ????

 

The second thing - calling your insurance during your session and using up your time.  And also complaining to you that she hadn't gotten paid yet.  Some insurance companies are slow. ...   If she wanted you to do something (e.g. call your insurance company to see what's up) then she should have communicated that to you AFTER the session.

 

Unfortunately, just as in other professions, there are good therapists and then there are bad therapists.  She falls into the second category.  

 

YES!  Time to find a new therapist.  

 

I know it is hard, but try not to internalize what she said about being lazy.  You are NOT lazy.  Exercise could be helpful -- eventually --but anyone with depression will understand that often it just isn't possible.  (We understand here.)    Therapists should understand this too.

 

It makes me so angry that you were treated this way.  

Edited by FlamelessCandle
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One time I did have a tdoc who was having issues with my insurance but she told me after the session was completed. And she worked it out herself so no problem. Your tdoc is odd. Your insurance or you is paying for this time...not paying her to do the "business end" of her job.

 

I agree I wouldn't go again. I don't see a reason to call her and tell her you are not coming back. She will figure it out. Jump and run.

 

db

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I'm sorry you were treated this way ... the therapist was way out of line, on many levels.  I would definitely try finding another therapist.  It sucks when they voice about how insurance is a main priority (in so many words); she should work it all out on her own time.  And yeah, I agree with others, to not go back, or to even call. 

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Wow! Thanks everyone to the QUICK responses....it really means a lot to me...it's odd....you are complete strangers to me YET you understand me.

 

Your support really lifted me up tonight. I hope I feel better soon so I can offer some encouraging advice to others here...

 

Thanks again. You all are great.

 

Footprints :)

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Completely unprofessional. I'm sorry you had to endure that. If it were me, I would call and explain why I was never coming back to her, that her behavior was unacceptable, and that she's lucky I don't report her ass. But then, I can be pretty vindictive :P. I hope you can find a different therapist with a better and more helpful attitude. It's taken me several tries to find one I'm compatible with and who I feel is actually helping me. Don't give up, they're out there. 

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Yes with someone as outrageously unprofessional (and uncaring) as that, I think it is better to just stop seeing them, and not call to notify or explain.  If you need to call and cancel your next appointment, just say that, "please cancel my appointment."

 

That is also the best chance you have at getting them to think about their behavior and improve it for the next client.   If you try to explain, they will just argue with you, blame it all on your MI, and not learn anything about their own behavior.  If you just go away, there is a chance they might think to themselves "did I say or do something wrong?"

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I agree with LABoforanges. That was insanely unprofessional. Telling you you're lazy? Unacceptable. The "this isn't free," and then calling mid-appt? No. She is what is known in the profession as a giant twat. Run, run like the wind.

 

I almost wonder if it is something you could report?

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ugh, what a terrible experience! I concur that you are not lazy. Depression makes it hard to do anything, never mind exercise. If it were me I would call (since you wouldn't have to talk to her-yay vm!) and leave a brief message stating that she is unprofessional, not helpful, and that you are going to look for a therapist elsewhere. Or something along those lines. I'm glad you have support on here and in AA! :)

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