Should I follow my ex-therapist on Instagram or is that creepy af?

405 Views Updated: 12 Apr 2018
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I saw a therapist weekly at my college's health center from the very first week of my freshman year until about now, the end of my fall semester of sophomore year. I’ve been in and out of therapy for years (with little real success in finding someone that I actually liked and could talk to) until I found this one. It was different from other times in therapy for so many reasons. Our sessions, even in the beginning, were never impersonal and clinical. She was always so open with me and, for the time in my life, I was able to to begin working through some of my problems. Even from the very start, I felt like I connected with her as a person, not just as a therapist, and that was endlessly helpful in being able to talk things through and be comfortable. She found out she got another job and then, about a month before our last session, let me know that she would be leaving. I was devastated and we both spent our last few sessions crying and talking about how intense this therapy was. Before all of this happened, I ended up accidentally finding her personal Instagram account last March and suddenly knew all about her personal life. I knew it was wrong and an invasion of privacy, but I regularly checked it to see what she was up to. What hurts the most is at our last session she said that I reminded her of herself, and that "while I don’t know much about her and the relationship is one-sided” I could probably assume the type of person she was and I could probably assume how similar we were. In reality, i’d been looking at her Instagram for months and had a pretty good idea of who she was—and that, if she wasn’t my therapist, we would have made good friends. I know I probably shouldn’t, and I know this would definitely put her in a conflicting situation with ethics and boundaries with therapy, but I really want to follow her on Instagram. It’s not like we’ll ever see each other again (she’s taking a job on the other side of the country), so I don’t necessarily see the harm. Also (maybe this is bad but—) I cant bear the thought of someone I’ve connected with so much, even a therapist, just vanish from my life. (She gave me her personal email to send her updates about my life if I wanted to, so I guess it’s not like she’s "vanished,” but...I don’t know). I don’t know if I should let this go (although I’m worried I can’t) or if I should just press the follow button and see what happens.

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