“Before every session, I take a moment to remember my humanity. There is no experience that this man has that I cannot share with him, no fear that I cannot understand, no suffering that I cannot care about, because I too am human.
No matter how deep his wound, he does not need to be ashamed in front of me. I too am vulnerable. And because of this, I am enough. Whatever his story, he no longer needs to be alone with it. This is what will allow his healing to begin.”
Profound, and profoundly moving, words from Carl. And yes.
If you are looking for a therapist, look for one who seems to embody these words. Avoid anyone hiding their humanity within the ‘expert’ or ‘professional’. Look for someone who is not judgmental (even if you are judging yourself). Look for someone who your intuition tells you may be willing and able to offer you authenticity, empathy and loving presence, welcoming and receiving you just as you are right now (even if you cannot welcome and receive yourself).
It is, indeed, in our shared humanity and in relationship that healing begins.
Thank you to Frank Ostaseski on Facebook, and our own John Clapham, for bringing the writer’s attention to this quotation.
Palace Gate Counselling Service, Exeter
Counselling Exeter since 1994