Dealing with Bad relationships

May 9, 2019

Dealing with Bad relationships

‘I don’t want to see you.’
‘There is no point keeping on trying.’

Being a psychologist doesn’t mean I get to change someone’s life.
The best lesson I learn from work, especially in a forensic environment,
is not to be the hero or the controller.

Trust is a fragile thing.
There can be some progress we have made together,
and then within a day or two,
the patient has broken some rules, big or small,
and everything is back to zero.

Many refuse to see me shortly after they have entered conflicts or made a mistake.
I can either believe these patients have no hope.
Or doubt my skills which are ‘not good enough’ to maintain the relationship in the rocky times.
I can put the idea of ‘risk’ first and back off,
thinking that I would not input anything when they are in the violent and non-compliant state.

Or I can try to understand how they are feeling.
I try to learn this is the behavior they have adapted all the years when they feel
they have to be defensive.
They may be fighting against the others,
but more importantly they are
blocking against themselves from
feeling vulnerable and hurt.

When we believe there is no solution to a problem,
when the person becomes unapproachable,
or the conflicts become ridiculous,
I always return back to the basics –
work on the relationship.
Work on trust.
There is little we can progress if we simply stick with the right/wrong.
The key to reconnection is respect and patience.
Work on communication.
Amend the relationship.
Eventually people will talk again.

Sometimes I do have to back off,
as they need space to not feel too intimidated.
However I do make sure I let them know I care,
and I do not shy away from fear or dislike.
I explicitly show my genuineness and care.

And then we take it from there.

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