Did you know that resistance and ambivalence in therapy are normal?
Resistance often takes on the connotation of a bad word in therapy, when it’s actually a really normal process and experience.
And it doesn’t mean that the client is doing therapy wrong, or purposely trying to be difficult or sabotage the process. But if healing and getting better were easy and straight forward processes, you probably wouldn’t need a therapist to help you navigate it in the first place.
When people come into therapy, they come in with beliefs, behaviors and coping strategies that have gotten them through to now, but are often not healthy, or adaptive or based on present circumstances. That’ doesn’t mean that changing them is going to be easy.
It’s scary to let go of old ways of doing things, and sometimes there are beliefs that interfere with that change. Like believing you don’t deserve to heal, or that you are incapable of change. These types of beliefs get in the way and cause us to resist change.
Not only that, but when people come into therapy, they often have good reasons for why they do what they do, and often part of themselves doesn’t want to give those ways up. What I often see in this case is part of the client really wanting to tackle the trauma and understand what happened to them, while another part doesn’t want to have to face the feelings or the reality of what happened. This ambivalence is understandable and needs to be acknowledged and worked through.
You are not a bad therapy client for having these experiences. Understanding and working through these experiences are a vital part of therapy for all of us.