Another way to dodge the threats of 1:1 therapy is to keep talking. If you can monopolise the discourse, you can steer it away from challenging subjects. You can keep the conversation on trivialities and away from specific admissions and examples, and their terrifying implications. This is difficult to pull off, because the whole point of the strategy is to avoid the humiliation of self-exposure, yet here you are waffling on about yourself.
The trick is to keep it only superficially about yourself, say, your philosophy of life, and try to lead the topic away to politics or something. You have to accept the embarrassing fact that you’re a tiresome bore, but it’s better than revealing what a nasty, selfish little shit you truly are. (I realise I’ve just written this whole paragraph in the 2nd person, to distance myself from it.)
Because of the free ranging nature of our therapy, Phillip is cool with this, but Abi won’t let me away with it. Abi’s job is to stop me doing anorexia. Right Now.
If I’m challenged to confront and explain my disordered thinking and behaviours, I try to take us on a long journey of digression; I escape into great, long-winded, obfuscating anecdotes, swooping allegorical asides, that carry us far, far away from the issue at hand. It gives me time to collect myself, to calm down, to think about what I’m going to say next, so I can remain guarded and careful, so I don’t blurt something out. (Isn’t that the essence of talking therapies? Blurting something out and then dealing with it?) I guess I do something similar in this blog. Think about it: When was the last time I dealt directly with anything truly difficult? Like my children. When was the last time I even mentioned food?