So happy coming out day...
If its happy for you...
and seriously why would there even be a day.
Did the planets align ever soo nicely or some libido based act occur in the cosmos??
Surely the largest question should be do you really have to come out at all, isn't it your business to do whatever you feel fit.
I guess I would like to see some research figures for the proportion of people that come out today compared with any other day of the year.
All day I have seen arguments for and against coming out day and I'm sure there would be a split between readers of this to.
Does it therefore make it wrong to come out another day?
Of course not, do as you please.
But just do what you want to.
Never be forced to do anything.
Over the last few weeks I have been a busy bunny promoting Bi Visibility Day which included standing on a town hall roof waving a flag around, along with an early morning radio interview. (I keep meaning to download this for posterity).
I've talked at a lovely event called Polyday in London, met some fantastic new friends and ended up starting a new Facebook group called Polyamoury BAME UK. If you know anyone this group might help please pass it on.
Then yesterday an event in Witney publicising World Mental Health Day. A talk about Hypno-Psychotherapy and Mental Health of LGBTQIA+ communities.
Needless to say a bit of back to normal client work was much needed today.
Just before I had a client I got a message from a friend saying it was coming out day and it was an excellent opportunity to publicise a charity I am trustee of, given I had been reading less than positive reports about the event as a whole I had to really consider it.
My client was running a bit late so I had time to tweet about the day from my phone, just saying our support charity was available this evening and our contact details. I used a coming out day meme on a rainbow background for effect as photos get more social media engagement than just writing.
My involvement in Bi Visibility Day really hammered home the message about poorer mental health amongst us and could it be because we aren't that visible and even suffer internal discrimination
But the worst part is we come out everyday to new people.
Yes I'm married....Yes I'm still Bi....No I'm not greedy
Why do people assume just because you presently reside inside the consigns of a heteronormative relationship that your Bi-ness fades away and you will end up heterosexual?
Its not like a temporary tattoo...
Bull and Shit would be my answer.
I firmly believe in the fluidity of sexuality but for me wherever I am, whoever I'm with, I am still Bi.
So if someone comes out to you, don't make them come out 365 times this year...
Its bloody boring.
So next June you will find me, amongst other places presenting at the NCHP conference.
Details here....Conference 2018
I'm talking about therapists being aware of the terminologies used in the GRSD/LGBTQIA+/Alternative Sexualities community to prevent therapeutic barriers.
Not only is this a completely ridiculously huge and unfathomable honour to be amongst such esteemed company but it also caused me to stumble a little at a very early moment.
I got asked to write my bio, that elevator speech, that Hiya I'm so an so aren't I bloody FAB-U-LOUS Darliiiinnngggg bit for the website.
Well that was where I stumbled.....
Faced with an empty page, words did not tumble from my fingers as there are now but writers block firmly took up residence inside my head, wrist, hands and eyes.
While talking to a friend about it I realised that actually I know a bit about stuff, nope I haven't been a therapist since year dot and I don't have quite such an impressive resume as some but in my own world I know my shit or shizzle as the Dogg might say.
I know and acknowledge my own personal experiences, I realise and point out in my regular supervision sessions my awareness of self to enable me to become the best therapist I can while joining my clients on their journeys.
But we don't blow our own trumpet very often, if at all and this 'homework' and the reflection it caused in me had the knock on affect of assisting a client of mine.
I now know how seriously difficult it can be to cram a few sentences with how bloody fantastic we are and so a clients homework was set of listing 5 great things about themselves.
I have heard it used as asking a client to start every morning by looking in the mirror and saying a good thing that happened or a good thing about themselves.
Maybe you should to try it?
Write that elevator speech, just a few lines but learn to appreciate how fantastic you are too.
I'm beginning to realise that although a tutor of mine always said I had excellent visualisation and metaphor skills, I never really believed it but that actually I really do.
I have realised that I can possess the ability to think of metaphors that translate when reflected upon but to some may appear outlandish.
On my very first weekend, I literally went to space in light trance and that's where it started. I worried about searching for a modality, what type of therapist am I? I was worrying about all the wrong things, the incidentals because what matters is with appropriate supervision, training and effort the art of performing therapy is a truly beautiful thing.
I draw from everywhere, everyone and my initial modality leanings have over time expanded into integrative therapy.
What I have learnt is rapport matters and whatcha know I'm bloody good at that.
So I sat down to write and did get it done, all while half joking I need an over inflated feeling of self importance to find the right words to measure up.
What is the point if we aren't continually learning about ourselves and others.
Embrace who you are because what you thought were faults, you may eventually realise is your USP.
Can you hear that?
Well neither can I, isn't it brilliant.
During my supervision today I spoke about how 2 of my clients had individually unintentionally, encouraged me to internally philosophise about the beauty of silence and how it has its place in the therapy room.
As an only child I grew up not saying very much to people, I spent my time programming rudimentary computers and thinking while being really shy and introverted.
Now however I still have children living at home, 1 of whom is still very young so its not too quiet at home anymore!
I still like my own company, time to reflect and bounce ideas around on the inside of my head, I make the most of any time I have to do it.
It also reminded me that I had recently watched a television series where famous people are given therapy.
I do not however watch it anymore for the 'celebrity' contained within but the therapist. Anytime I can observe another therapist work, I do as for me its a lovely way to see the style of others.
So I was watching the latest instalment where for the record the 'celebrity' was emotionally absent for the whole programme. There in body but not in spirit.
Well every time I sensed a silence was coming the therapist filled the gap with the same stock phrase and I was surprised how much I reacted to it.
I asked myself why is that gap being filled?
Because its for the telly?
Or because silence can be uncomfortable for the person who isn't in charge of it?
All these recent revelations have caused me to think about why we don't value silence.
Its awkward, jarring, not what we are taught to be comfortable with, we can't control what we can't see.
Then again it may be as therapists we don't feel we are giving clients value for money if we don't fill the time with the chatter.
Therapy is not cheap and in today's austere times we must be doing our best to facilitate clients, just not at the expense of the silence.
While training I remember being told not to be afraid of the silence but it is not until we experience it ourselves and see it in practice that we can recognise our own fears of it and challenge our behaviour towards it.
So this week I have been challenged by it and am better and more rounded by it. My very own big boob lady moment watching a client in process while being completely silent and it didn't feel strange at all.
If you are looking for a get rich quick scheme then being a therapist isn't the profession to enter. It will push you, pull you in ways you never thought possible.
Its not just a job but a way of life and expanding of thinking, everyday I keep experiencing things that push me, challenge me and its bloody amazing.
So don't be afraid of that silence, remember you don't need to control everything, embrace that chaos and revel in it, not that you might listen to me just yet.