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Is This Transference?

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From Australia: So I’ve been seeing my current therapist for about 8 months now. I have MDD or Dysthymia, depending on who you ask. I really struggle with being open, and straight with her, I generally deflect all questions with irrelevant answers that I think she wants to hear, or what I think SHOULD be heard. I understand it takes time and all of that, I’m also not convinced that I will ever reach the point of truely confiding in my therapist.

I find that I really struggle between sessions with her, I long to be her vicinity. I get so fixated on the next session and how far away it is and it’s just like an added downward spiral. Is this what you would consider ‘transference’? Where does all of this come from and is it normal? Is it a part of the process of therapy, do they aim to get you to become so dependant on then that you feel you have no other choice but to cling on so to never lose them?

I just don’t really understand. I want so badly to be able to talk to her right now, and I’d really love to get a hug. But that’s overstepping the boundaries. Sharing any of this would be too much. Why does all of this happen?

Is This Transference?

Answered by on -


It sounds to me like you are working on developing trust with your therapist. You both do and don’t want help. That’s normal. Most people both want to change and are scared to change. Most people go through a period of testing out their therapist to make sure the therapist can hear their fears without judgment.

Therapists don’t want you to become dependent. They do want you to become a collaborator in your treatment. It sounds to me like you are working yourself up to that point.

If you’d like to move things along, I do suggest you share your letter with your therapist. The two of you can then talk about the pace of treatment you need in order to feel safe.

I wish you well.
Dr. Marie

Is This Transference?

Therapists live, online right now, from BetterHelp:

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2018). Is This Transference?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 30, 2020, from
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 8 May 2018 (Originally: 11 Jun 2017)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018
Published on Psych All rights reserved.