I have officially finished Dialectical Behaviour Therapy. This, of course, means that I am living a shiny new recovered-person life, living in a normal flat with some normal friends and generally having a ball. Spoiler: it does not mean that. It means that the 2 years I was allocated for getting better are up. I am in some ways quite a lot less mad than I was when I started, but still a significant distance short of sane.
This is both good and infuriating: good that I self-harm less, that I’m now 4 months into a crisis-free period (this is a record, I have awarded myself a gold star, see below), that I sometimes know how to put words to some of my emotions, that I have learned to call the Samaritans when I need to, that I occasionally choose to see other humans.
Infuriating that at the end of a time which I thought would fix me, I am still living in a badly-run, unsupportive supported housing project; that I have had to spend a significant proportion of my therapy time working to restabilise after crises triggered by the sudden withdrawal of other support for funding reasons, or problems with my housing project; that using that time to restabilise has meant I haven’t been able to begin more in-depth work with my therapist; that I am unlikely to get another chance at long-term NHS therapy in order to do that work because there is less and less funding and more and more need; that the whole therapy process has had to run on someone else’s timetable.
So I find myself in a weird grey area. Not dead, but not better enough to be ‘normal’. When I started therapy, those were the only two outcomes I envisaged. Fortunately, my care has been transferred to a different team within the same service so I’m not being left to fend for myself, but it is a big change and I am not a fan of goodbyes.