I Have Mommy Issues
That’s exactly what I’m going to say. The first thing when I walk into my new therapist’s office for our first session. “I have Mommy Issues.” Oh, dear. I am laughing at that, but there is truth in it.
I know I also have “Bio Dad Issues,” “Non-Bio Dad Issues,” “Sister Issues,” “WHOLE FUCKING STUPID FAMILY ISSUES!” And probably lots of other “Issues,” as well. Many other categories of “Issues,” comprised of things that are outside of my nutty family. Yet, because my family is (and was) so nutty, it made me be nutty in certain, damaging ways in response to both my family, and some of those other categories of “Issues.” And those nutty ways were kind of the same!
Welcome to Therapy 101. Perhaps more like Therapy 1,000,001, because that may be the minimum number of things I’ll have to talk about. If I can talk at all. I also have a lifelong “Issue” with Alexithymia. I’ve only had one form of long term therapy, and the woman wasn’t exactly “helpful.” She certainly denied the above. Also, I am older now (and possibly wiser?) in that I know what I need from therapy and a therapist. At least in part. Maybe?
So, all of that above. The nutty, family stuff? That would be roughly Family Systems Theory, and can be used heavily by analysts. Which is okay. But kind of not. I can see my “Mommy Issues” in there somewhat, but I don’t always like theoretical frameworks that are too rigid. Plus, I am so, so tired of debating the “real” and “true” nature of penis envy. Yes, I am a castrated female! Every time I hear that, I immediately think of a Castrato, singing in such a wretched tone, it makes my ears bleed. You’ll have to forgive me. I’m reading a 20+ year-old book, by Harriet Goldhor Lerner, at the moment. Even still, you can’t paint every family with the same brush.
If all the greats got together (in heaven or hell or Nubia or wherever they are right now) I’d have to say my family ended up like this:
Picasso was sitting in a cafe when he saw his pal Modigliani walk by and waved him over. They heard a ruckus and Pollock was getting kicked out of a bar (again.) He was already banned from where Picasso and Modigliani were, so they went for a walk. Then, Picasso told them of his new inspiration. “PAs Family!”
Pollock’s place was closest, but he hadn’t paid his phone bill in ages, and needed to make a call. So, they went to Modigliani’s, which was next on the route. Pollock made his call, and sure enough, his supplies and tools were delivered. Modigliani made a call to another artist who he thought could add some nice touches. Monet.
They sat down, and Pollock opened up what everyone thought were his brushes, paints, palettes. They were a bit puzzled, though, because he didn’t actually use any of those. Instead, there were huge amounts of Opium, LSD and Cocaine.
Pollock and Picasso nearly beat each other to a pulp to get to them first. Modigliani stared curiously at the packages, and thought, why not give them a go! Then, in walked Monet, completely agog at the scene. He looked at Pollock’s “supplies,” and immediately decided he’d have none of it! He wanted to keep his lines picturesque and soft…maintain his precision… Which he didn’t end up doing too much of at all, really. He could barely get past the three others to even see the canvas!
I can’t paint to save my life. I’ve tossed out all my art supplies. However, not in the manner of Pollock for illicit substances. Perhaps my prospective therapist will have some surprisingly, talented, artistic flair. Or if not, they’ll at least be good enough at their job.