An Open Letter to my Former Counselor

So this blog is definitely still for a class project. But here’s the thing, the class is a writing class, so there’s really no limit on what I can do with my project. And I’ve found these Friday musing posts to be very therapeutic for me. Using this blog as a creative outlet for all my internalized emotions is sort of helping, so I hope I won’t get dinged too many points for deviating from my original plan. Anyway…

It has not been a good week in bipolar land. Actually, it has been arguably one of the worst, most emotionally charged weeks I have had in a very very long time. Not because of any outside factors (well I’ve got a lot of homework but nothing worth crying about), but just because that is how my brain is wired and it just decided that this week was going to be a bad one. I was discussing exactly what was going on in my brain to someone and they said, “You really need to start seeing a counselor.” And immediately sirens went off in my head and I quickly responded, “I can’t. The reasoning is stupid and I know it’s stupid but I can’t.” And the reasoning is stupid, and I know it’s stupid, and everyone I’ve ever told says it’s stupid. But the fact of the matter is that I just have a really hard time trusting counselors.

So here goes. Hello, former counselor. I’m just going to call you Mrs. Smith here. You probably don’t remember me. The last time you saw me, I was 16. Since you probably don’t remember, let me paint you a picture: I was the temperamental blonde who wore too much eyeliner and just desperately wanted someone to talk to. I don’t remember what we talked about the last time we met exactly, because at the time I didn’t know it was going to be the last time I saw you. But I can imagine I was a crying mess. Because I was just starting to realize that something was very very wrong in my head and I didn’t know what was happening. And that’s what we were trying to figure out when I would come to your office. You gave me a stress ball that was shaped like a little rubber pig for me to squeeze when I was upset.

But then you left.

I guess I never stopped to think about all the things that you had going on in your own life. I bet it was quite a lot. After all, we’re all human and life isn’t easy for any of us. I know it couldn’t have been easy listening to the problems of troubled teenagers all day long. But I was a terrified kid with an undiagnosed mental disorder. In hindsight, I know I may have been selfish, but I was only 16. As an adult I can think of all the things I wish I had done differently, but none of those things would have even occurred to me then– I couldn’t even drive yet. Maybe I should have asked how you were doing and we could have talked about you for one day, all day. I would have, if I would have thought it could have made you stay.

But that didn’t happen. You just didn’t come back one day. I thought you were just really sick at first, so I kept coming back and every time they would just tell me the same thing– that you just weren’t there. But I was just a dumb kid, why would they tell me what was going on? And I don’t remember exactly when, but at some point I realized that you weren’t coming back. And I never saw you again. I don’t remember everything that I felt, but I remember feeling really hurt, and wondering if I was the reason you left. If it was just because I was too much and you couldn’t handle me anymore. I spent way too many nights lying awake, sobbing, asking myself if once again, I wasn’t good enough. I’ve done that many nights since for a lot of different people, but you were the first.

Ever since, my life has been a revolving door of people that have decided that I’m too much for them and they couldn’t stay anymore. I don’t blame them I guess, I am a lot to handle. I guess I wouldn’t blame you either, if I was the reason.

I’m turning 23 this year and realistically I know that there is no way that you left because of one unstable teenager. But the 16 year old inside of me still wonders that and if there wasn’t anything I could have said or done to make you stay. Realistically I know I couldn’t have been the reason you left, but after all these years I never asked and I still don’t want to know because I’m afraid of what the answer will be.

And I thought writing this down would make me feel better but the truth of the matter is it has just made me lonelier, because even when I get it out and see it on the page in black and white I KNOW IT’S SO STUPID but I just don’t trust the way that I used to anymore. Because  I am absolutely terrified of walking into another counselor’s office, getting comfortable, vomiting my secrets all over the place, and being left again.

So Mrs. Smith, I know you probably don’t remember me, but no matter how hard I try, I can’t forget you. I hope you’re happy, wherever you are.

I still have that rubber pig.

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