Okay so Dr J "got it" very quickly the other day but I've been mulling things over and keep going back to the time when, near the end of Ben's CAMHS treatment, when I felt as if the therapists were simply opening can after can of worms rather than actually helping to move things forward.
Now, this wasn't there fault. It had probably just reached the natural end of what they could do for Ben. Together he and I have always been very good at devising our own ways of moving forward, for example the Contract and our regular walks / talks. Bringing in a third party that doesn't know us is almost like an educational exercise - of them, not us. And in the process it means that Ben is having to go back to places that are quite dark - places he may wish to move on from and never re-visit. So, if this is the case, any therapy could work against Ben rather than in his favour.
Okay so we are very fortunate that Dr J "gets it", especially in a therapy world where so many people just don't "get" modern evidence based eating disorder treatment. But she is never going to "get it" as much as we do, purely and simply because she is a third party. It's not her fault, but that's the way it is.
Of course in the Bad Old Days Ben - and other young people with eating disorders - need treatment. Lots of it. But in our case especially I wonder whether we can actually work on these outstanding issues ourselves rather than needing to involve a therapist?
I'm in two minds about this. Part of me says, yes, we need Dr J's services - and I am extremely impressed with her, she's great! But another part of me says we probably don't. We can do it on our own, just as we've been doing since Ben was discharged from CAMHS in February.
Dr J did say that some people find it more helpful to "dip in and out" of her services rather than sign up for a set number of sessions. Especially, in Ben's case, later in the year when he nears the time when he will be thinking about whether or not to give university another try - this is when her services might be more appropriate or useful, working on the social skills and giving him a "toolbox" to cope with the myriad of different challenges he will face at university. And by that stage he will hopefully have moved on from the various eating disorder fallout issues that still remain.
So I need to have a chat with Ben about it, about how he feels. Although our session the other day revealed a variety of outstanding issues that still need addressing, I also wonder whether Ben was actually dealing with some of these in his own way, quite successfully. And it's something that, if monitored over the next few months, might happen naturally.
This is what I've been mulling over since I wrote the last blog post.
Watch this space...