Being professional doesn’t mean being prying or invasive. Bo’s brand of professionalism means openness to individuality, observing without preconception, listening without being silent, supporting without condescending, disagreeing without judgment. He isn’t afraid to let his patients see a bit of himself but he withholds just enough to maintain the patient/therapist relationship. We booked several more sessions without hesitation.
During the course of my relative’s therapy, he brought me into the treatment in a gentle and accepting manner. When he suggested that I might, too, benefit from a few sessions, I decided to comply. I knew I was a powerful influence in my relative’s life, and if I could learn anything that would aid me in supporting her recovery, I was willing. I also knew that I had some “minor” anxiety problems, a few mildly phobic tendencies, and still felt myself to be in a grief-stricken mode, having lost my mother seven years before. Even I knew I should be coping better than I was.
I was really nervous when I went to my first session as a patient instead of in my “protective bear suit,” but by this time I could see the help he had given my relative, and I had also admitted to myself, painfully, that I had a few issues that should be brought forth instead of buried and denied.
That first session took me totally by surprise. I fully intended to talk about my role in my relative’s life, the positive and the not so positive aspects of our extremely close relationship, and how I might best help her to recover. Instead, I couldn’t STOP talking about me! Poor Bo. Where does he get his patience? I told him very personal things, going back to my childhood, my adolescence, young adulthood, motherhood, and on to “who I was” at this point. I told him about my thought processes, my egoist tendencies, my total and complete adoration of my mom, and the devastating effect her death had had on me. I brought up my fears, my deliberate false fronts which protected my tender core from everyone who tried to get close, and I admitted that I hated growing old. I told him that I did not like who I was at this point! I just missed who I “used to be.”
I will go into no further detail about my issues. Suffice it to say, Bo Sebastian got it all out of me! After that first session I cried for hours. It felt very cleansing and I couldn’t wait to see him again. My other sessions proved equally productive and I began to notice subtle changes in myself. My grief began to lighten. I seemed to be more accepting of my unavoidable aging processes. I was worrying less, getting out more, and communicating better with my loved ones. I found that I could still play, now and then and being so serious every minute was not a plus. My future took on a brighter outlook and one day I just “realized” that my self-image to this point had been very fragmented. It became apparent that as I grew physically from one stage of life to the next, the old me didn’t come along! There was no growth process! I just stopped being who I was and became someone else! The “real me” just got covered up and I simply assumed the identity that everyone expected at the time. The only thing I carried forward was the grief and loss I felt because I deeply missed the parts of me I thought of as “dead and gone.” Bo Sebastian helped me find and resurrect those long gone parts of myself and with his hypnosis and therapeutic talents, he showed me how to blend all those fragmented parts into one cohesive whole, an individual with strengths and weakness based on a lifetime of experiences, all gleaned from the many individuals I had been. He helped me to see that every “persona” I had ever worn was equally important to my natural progression and that I had never “lost” any one of them! Most importantly, he helped me realize that my mother was not lost to me either. I still had all the wonderful parts of her, inside of me. I now understand that she remains the central core of who I am. I am the indisputable product of her existence, her influence, her value system, and I am the fortunate beneficiary of her tremendous capacity to love unconditionally. It was those very traits that lead me to Bo in the first place.
Bo Sebastian has a great many gifts, but if I have to name the one that probably drives all the others, it would simply be his “ability to love the unlovable.”
As a sidebar, may I add that my relative, who continues therapy with him, has reached a new level of mental and physical health that she has not enjoyed in her entire lifetime? Thank you, Bo…”