18 years worth of damage. That’s how long I’ve been in therapy and/or on psychiatric medication. I’ve only just, as of September this past year, found a therapist that I can begin to work with. One who seems not only competent, but somewhat helpful. So how long will it take her to undo the damage that past mental health care workers have inflicted? One year? Five? How long do I have to wait for recovery? With recovery meaning that I am able work part time or in a fulfilling volunteer position, with a satisfying social life. Is it worth hanging on for that possibility, knowing that it might never happen at all?
I am told that saying things like “I’ll never get better,” or “I’ll never feel content with my life” are self-defeating, that they are something my therapist calls “future-telling.” I cannot see into the future, so I cannot say with a certainty that I will always feel this gloomy, or so she says. What if, however, I can infer a pattern for my life based upon past evidence of its trajectory? According to this evidence, I might as well walk outside right now and into oncoming traffic.