Opinion: I Went to Therapy and Now I’m a Democrat – What Gives?

(Lexington, KY) Hello. My name is Derek Jetson and I am a 47 year old man. I’ve spent most of my life living in the state of Kentucky and according to my doctor, a state of depression. I was recently diagnosed with both seasonal depression and a mild case of anxiety, and since I want to make sure that I am doing everything I can to remain healthy for my family, I decided to follow the guidelines laid out by my provider. Meaning that for the first time in my life, I went to therapy. Unfortunately, I was not properly warned about the side effects of such treatment and have found that after months working with my counselor, I have become a Democrat. What’s up with that?

Let me give you some more context so you can fully understand what is happening here and why I am writing this opinion piece right now.

For the majority of my life, I have lived by a simple set of rules that has kept me sane and disciplined in this toxic and fallen world. I drink coffee every morning, black. I vote in every election, red. And I have worn the same shirt to work every day for the last 25 years, vermilion. These might seem like small things, but they kept my life on track.

But then, I go to see a therapist, Dr. Haskins, and everything changes. I start putting cream in my coffee, I start voting blue, and I try wearing a different shirt to work because mine was apparently ‘offensive.’ Not because my therapist told me to do these things, mind you, but because I wanted to. All my life I was doing things my way, at least I thought, only now I realize that I don’t even know what that means.

Therapy showed me that I am not the center of the universe and that the best gift I can offer others is my empathy. Who would have thought?

It’s just, I miss certain things about my old life, like being a Republican. I can’t really explain it because I felt much worse internally back then, but there was a certain level of enjoyment in getting into arguments with my daughters and acting like nothing could phase me. I loved getting on Twitter and yelling at the people advocating for abortion access and workers rights. Now when I try to go back to these things, I just feel hollow and empty. I have a good relationship with my daughters and there’s less tension at the dinner table. Could therapy really change someone that much?

If someone can explain this to me, I would love to hear your thoughts. My therapist says that what I am experiencing is called growth, but I don’t think that’s the case. I just can’t think of another explanation. Was I wrong this entire time? Who do I even blame for my life this far, if not myself?

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