How becoming a therapist ruined my hopeless romanticism

How becoming a therapist ruined my hopeless romanticism

(Early 2000s music edition)

I’m a little late to the game as the “When We Were Young” Memes are no longer trending.  As I remember scrolling through the memes, I wondered why Something Corporate or Postal Service was not part of the lineup. I was one of the hundreds of teenagers in the early 2000s that had an EMO phase. One was partly to “fit in” and the other fed into my hopeless romanticism (the words just spoke to teenage me). Earlier in my teen years I was also a hardcore boy band lover. As I think of this I’m reminded that becoming a therapist ruined my hopeless romanticism. I thought it would be fun and light hearted to share with you what goes through my therapist mind when I listen to some of these songs I used to belt out as a teenager.

Complicated by Avril Lavigne

Why’d you have to make things so complicated?

(They didn’t, it’s your interpretations of their actions)

I see the way you’re acting like you’re somebody else gets me so frustrated

(Not being able to control others, makes YOU feel frustrated)

Life’s like this, you

(No, this is only one perspective and your perspective of life)

You fall, you crawl, and you break

And you take what you get

(Empathy without boundaries is self destruction)

And you turn it into honesty and promise me I’m never gonna find you faking it

(These are unrealistic expectations. No one is perfect)

No No No

(Yes, Yes, Yes)

I’ll Never Break Your Heart by Backstreet Boys

From the first day, that I saw your smiling face.

Honey, I knew that we would be together forever.

(This is not romance, this is unhealthy attachment . No one knows for a fact you will be with someone forever)

Oooh when I asked you out, you said “no” but I found out,

Darling that you’d been hurt, you felt you’d never love again.

(Someone needs to respect boundaries here. Clearly, this person is expressing their need for time and space before getting into a new relationship)

I deserve a try, honey just once,

Give me a chance and I’ll prove this all wrong. You walked in; you were so quick to judge

(Well all judge. That’s what keeps us safe when experiencing or meeting someone for the first time)

But honey, he’s nothing like me

(Yes, please heal from your previous relationships so you do not project it on future relationships.

I’ll never break your heart

(Using the word never is a distorted thought process. We will disappoint when we decide to be in relationships with people.)

I’ll never make you cry

(Where are they supposed to release energy?  People need to cry to release energy. It’s therapeutic.)

I’d rather die, than live without you

( You are not connecting, you are attaching if you actually think this. )

I’ll give you all of me, honey that’s no lie

(Codependency, that is the truth)

Hero by Enrique Iglesias

I can be your hero, baby

I can kiss away your pain

(Fixing other people’s problems will just keep you frustrated. You do not know what they need, only they do. Pain dissipates by getting to the root cause that only the person that is feeling the pain can do something about it (ie. therapy, boundary setting, expressing needs)

I will stand by you forever

(This is an unrealistic promise. We don’t always see and experience the world the same way even in the strongest relationships)

You can take my breath away

(Your breath is the first thing that gets taken away after experiencing trauma and the last thing you get back)

Would you swear, that you would always be mine?

(Unhealthy attachment, we are no one’s possession.)

Or would you lie? Would you run and hide?

(Lying is a protective factor. Running and hiding means you feel unsafe in a situation)

Am I in too deep? Have I lost my mind?

(Gaslighting yourself means you have been around people who didn’t validate your feelings growing up.)

I don’t care you’re here tonight.

(You do care or you wouldn’t be questioning. )

I still love these songs as I am very fond of my younger years and remembering belting out these songs on the karaoke machine (I wouldn’t be Filipino if I didn’t notate that this was a signature Filipino tradition at family gatherings growing up).  I may cringe at times listening to the words now as an adult therapist but know it was all developmentally appropriate why the words spoke to me as a teen. I didn’t have the frame of reference that I have today. Don’t even get me started with books and romantic comedies. That’ll have to be part of a future post.

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