It would seem a bit of a 180° turn, to go from someone who works behind the scenes of film and TV shows to becoming a psychotherapist. It’s not a dramatic story, but over time I’ve found that my strengths have always been interpersonal, particularly when talking about weighty matters. Friends have always valued what I offered in our discussions: impartiality, a different perspective – something more than just sympathy or advice. Combine this with my artsy leanings, my active life as a fiction writer, and the simple fact that I’ve had more than one person say “You should be a therapist”, I decided that it was something to look into.
Actually, it was something I mostly talked about, rather than looked into. It was my partner who happened upon the website of the institute that I ended up enrolling in. The more I looked into it, even though it had been a very long time since studying anything relating to psychology or psychotherapy, the more it felt right (or at least, worth the risk if it didn’t turn out to be something I liked).
And, slowly, I came to this place: a year-and-a-half later, an almost-renovated office in the basement, business cards and website in the works. I’m still enrolled in the program (halfway through my second of three years) and hope to take on clients part-time in the next month as a therapist-in-training. Of course, I’m still going to be working in film until I’ve completed the projects that I’ve started. I have no clue how the transition will go: slowly, quickly, easy, bumpy. Not sure.
That said, being a psychotherapist, I am discovering, feels natural. I have no hesitation sitting in the therapist’s chair and sharing time and space with someone who needs to talk. It is an obviously challenging career, but one that I feel better-suited to than what I am currently doing.