Door handle revelations

Does anyone remember Columbo? Not the guy who discovered America, I mean the TV detective. Somewhere near the end of the show, he would be just about to leave a room and then he would turn around and say “…… just one more thing” and boom, he’d deliver his coup de grace. Well, there is a similar phenomenon in therapy (so I’m told) and it’s called the Door Handle Revelation. Apparently it’s quite common for a client to reveal a key piece of information just before a therapy session ends. I suppose it serves to put the information out there, but prevents it having to be discussed further.

I was going to call this post ‘Endings’ and talk about how I felt about the end of my year of therapy, which will happen in a couple of weeks time. Then……. Boom. Ah, not for me a simple Door Handle Revelation. No, I thought I’d wait about a fucking year to get to the point. My brain is such fun sometimes. Okay, I’m being a bit hard on myself here. I wouldn’t wish to do myself a disservice. I wasn’t consciously thinking ‘Ooooh, I’ll not mention this really important thing until right at the end when we can do fuck all about it’. It just…. didn’t really come up.

My therapist (H) said ‘What emotion is associated with this?’ I said ‘shame’. Gold star for me, thanks to a year of psychotherapy, I can now recognise and name my emotions. At this rate, I’ll be able to ace those cards with emojis on that you use to help children describe how they are feeling.

So yeah, where do I go with this one?..……. no idea. Because this is real life and not (to steal a quote) a two and a half star movie. I did not collapse sobbing to the floor. I did not have an epiphany. There was a deplorable lack of stirring background music. Everything is not, to steal another quote, ‘peachy’.

Still, there is some time left with H to try and explore this one…… and there is still me and whatever comes next to try and work out how I want to live. I might have said figure out some reasons, I suppose, but that is to look back. The past cannot be changed. Looking forward seems more useful. And, as H pointed out, maybe it was necessary to go through the year of therapy in order to get to this point. It is not a disaster, just another bend in the road. As another therapist I worked with briefly (and who I hold in great esteem) said… “There is always a way forwards. It may not be therapy. But there is always a way.”

…..Oh, were you waiting for the grand reveal? Sorry to disappoint, but that’s not happening, not today anyway. Right now I plan to go and deploy every skill that a year of group education has taught me. To be specific: I am going to lie on the sofa, drink chai latte (sent to me by the self-care equivalent of Santa) and watch re-runs of Cracker.


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