In January 2019, I started seeing a therapist. I had seen therapists in the past, but this time I chose an Asian therapist who was female. Never again I’d see a white therapist, to whom Asian experience was diminutive in the universe of psychotherapy. I never had difficulty finding Asian medical doctors in the Bay Area, but Asian psychotherapists weren’t as plentiful. It was important that I’d see an Asian woman, who would be familiar with what it was like to be one in the U.S.
I found one who was experienced and specialized in psychoanalysis. I called her and told her I needed to talk about what happened with my ex, but ultimately I needed to talk about me, my pains from the past, way back into my childhood.
At the end of the first session, she told me I was sad and lonely. I pictured an elderly woman sitting in a studio apartment with three cats because that was the general perception of sadness and loneliness. It was always women that carried the perception of life’s misery from aloneness. I should have felt offended, but thought perhaps I had to accept that I had indeed become that woman, minus the cats. I asked my therapist what made her think I was sad and lonely. She said I was sad because I was disappointed and hurt by someone I had trusted and lonely because I had isolated myself from friends and family. I said no, I was angry, not sad, and I wasn’t lonely, I just didn’t want to talk to friends or family because they wouldn’t understand, I would rather be alone than being pitied by them. She said we’d talk more next time.