I've written here before about never being the villain in your own story and I have been thinking about this a lot lately. It's a fascinating concept and one that speaks to how little self awareness we often posses. This hero/villain phenomenon plays a particularly interesting role in psychotherapy. As a therapist, most of the time, unless you are working with couples, a family system, or a larger treatment team, your work is pretty much based on the reality of your patient. What they report is the truth we have to go on. I can say that for experienced therapists it becomes clear when a patient is strongly curating their story, but this then translates as a narrow perspective and our job becomes to offer a wider focus. Sometimes that wider focus involves an awareness of fact vs. feeling, or as I like to say, ""Fact + Feeling,"" as there are almost always multiple truths. Other times a wider focus provides more of a corrective experience around how hard it can feel to not be able to consider a wider focus and be stuck in a fixed and very narrow reality. Ouch. I've been there on both sides of the couch. I had a mentor who used to constantly remind me that everyone just wants to be held. When in doubt, find a way to let the patient know that you are holding them (metaphorically speaking of course). And this reminder has always been of value, whether with a patient, my partner, or my kid. I suppose in being held, we feel that we must be the hero. Could we possibly be the villain and still feel deserving of being held? Yes. Most definitely yes. Even if we feel we don't deserve it, you don't have to feel like you deserve something, to need something. YOU DON'T HAVE TO FEEL LIKE YOU DESERVE SOMETHING TO NEED SOMETHING. That might be the real gem that grows here. This hero/villain idea speaks to so much more than I can write here. Splitting, being fixed in a more psychotic and less neurotic way of thinking, so many things. I'm revisiting a lot of these ideas. Working on a way to write more and invite you to explore more of the mind with me. a way to do this is coming. Hold fast.

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