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Thread: Unbiased help for AGRs

  1. #1
    SheLikesKitties's Avatar
    SheLikesKitties is offline OW/YM 21YR GAP
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    Unbiased help for AGRs

    In another thread I talked about early retirement and how guilty I feel. For several months I have been trying to let go of my business and get my son more involved so when I actually retire, he will be the successor manager. My son is not getting the mindset that he is going to be the manager soon, but he is only 24, and has always had me to manage the business. So I feel guilty towards my business and staff, and this guilt has translated into uncertainty and anxiety, which, I imagine, are normal reactions to a transition. I am in no way sad that I am retiring, I just want everything working OK once I am gone.

    In addition to that, the other day Nick and I had a very bad (isolated) fight, that has left me restless too.

    So I decided to visit a counselor to basically develop a plan to deal with my issues, or at least to tell me if what I am feeling is normal.

    Everything was sort of OK until he asked about my husband's age. From that point on the whole visit deteriorated (IMHO) with him talking about me playing a "motherly" role and feeling sad about that. He wanted to give me anti-depressants.

    I told him over and over that I was not sad... please someone tell me if there is a difference between anxious and sad, or was I being dense?

    Maybe I need another type of counsellor... a succession counsellor or something... it is so hard to find specialzed help in this country.

    Anyways, I am just ranting because I spent 2 hours of my life being told that I am mothering my husband.
    You know it's love when the pain of being apart is greater than the pain of being together.

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    I would find another counselor. My mom is a therapist, and I go see a counselor about once a month. Neither of these things make me an expert, but I have some insight to both sides. It seems to me that your counselor made a very quick assumption that seems to be very stereotypical.
    I am fairly certain that regardless of age, women can find themselves "mothering" their partners. My ex was ten years older and I felt at many times I treated him like a child ( mostly because he acted like one). I tend to find myself " mothering" all sorts of people because well, I'm a mom.
    I would find myself a counselor who has a different view. It may take a few tries to find the right fit, but it will be worth it.
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    theREALTrish is offline Senior Member
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    Although sadness/depression can be accompanied with anxiety, they can also be separate. It would seem that turning over your business to your son, and not being sure if he's ready, would definitely cause anxiety. What you're feeling is completely normal and doesn't rise to the need for medication. From what you've said in the past, it seems that there might be some concern about Nick being able to step up to the plate and take on more financial responsibility. Some of that may be part of his personality, and some of it may be that he is a foreigner in your country. I'm sure it would be difficult for anyone, regardless of their age, to relocate to another country and assimilate financially. Of course, that's also dependent on a lot of things.....the economy of the country, the education/career path of the person, etc.

    Was the argument that you had with Nick related to you retiring? If it was, and you expressed that to the counselor, he may have interpreted that as your husband being dependent on you. Then, because of the age difference, that interpretation could go on, in some people's minds, to mean "mothering". That seems, to me, to be a bias, stereotype of an age gap relationship.

    I agree with Brin. If you feel the need to talk to anyone, find another counselor. Keep looking until you find someone who's open-minded. Also, don't wonder if there's something wrong with you because you're having these feelings. You've worked for a very long time. You've created a successful business. It's normal to be anxious about giving that up.....even if you'll still be there if needed. If you do choose to retire, you want to be able to relax and enjoy yourself. If you can't then maybe working for awhile longer is better.

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    soul is offline Senior Member
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    SLK , what would happen if your son couldn't or didn't want to manage your company? Perhaps his lack of stepping up is because he's subconsciously concerned too. It might be you need a longer transition into retirement so that you are 100% confident in your son and the business , would that be an option?

    As for the counsellor 'the one stop shop for all your woes' they are like any other profession you get good and bad ones. Perhaps mothering is the wrong word to use, all of us as females have that neutering quality. What exactly is mothering supposed to mean? we care too much? perhaps some times we do, but that's not something to be ashamed of. Rather than get caught on that word, consider if you do try to protect Nick or your son too much. If there is anything in that, maybe that's something you can work on to reach a good compromise with, it might benefit you and them.
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  5. #5
    SheLikesKitties's Avatar
    SheLikesKitties is offline OW/YM 21YR GAP
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    I think I will find a new counselor. This guy was a flop.

    I do not know if men are more prone to judge than women.

    The fight with Nick was about a garlic breadstick. I do not understand why it escalated to a horrible fight that seemed irrational IMO. I wonder if he has underlying issues that just bubbled up.

    I scheduled a one hour meeting tomorrow with son about business. He needs to step up to the plate if I am going to retire. On the other hand my assistant manager is thinking about taking English classes, so in case my son or I are not available, she can deal with English speaking customers. She is actually Plan B is son does not get as involved as he should, but that is only half a solution, because that means that I have not finished raising a responsible son and he will need more pushing. Grrrr.

    Nick is working a lot, and likes what he does, so no problems on that regards.

    I am in the waiting list for a counsellor that is a retirement counsellor. Hopefully he will be better than the last one.
    You know it's love when the pain of being apart is greater than the pain of being together.

  6. #6
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    I think it's best to find someone new to talk to. It's not good to have someone who is judgmental or biased giving you advice.

    Yes with anxiety it's normal to feel sad because the anxious feelings you have can be making you emotional but usually depression/anxiety are there own symptoms and forms of dealing with them are different than sadness.

    You are making a huge lifestyle change in the next upcoming months and have a lot to prepare and go through leading up to it. I think it's perfectly normal that you have some reservations leaving your business and having your son take over at such a young age and him not fully being able to grasp the responsibility he is about to take on. Anyone would feel nervous/anxious.

    I think its' a great thing to talk to someone and hopefully you find someone who is more open and will listen to you instead of trying to tell you how you feel and why and not get hung up on the AGR your in being that really has nothing to do with the issues of your company or your feelings at the present moment.
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    Quote Originally Posted by SheLikesKitties View Post
    ... I decided to visit a counselor ..... Everything was sort of OK until he asked about my husband's age. From that point on the whole visit deteriorated (IMHO) with him talking about me playing a "motherly" role and feeling sad about that.
    It seems that the term 'counsellor' is getting used in a broader sense now, but that sounds a long way from the Rogerian model. He sounds more like a Freudian than a counsellor - analytical and interventionist, assuming there is likely to be a real underlying problem quite different from the one the client reports.

    He wanted to give me anti-depressants.
    Again, not like a counsellor as I know them (or does the term have a different meaning in Panama?). While people qualified to prescribe anti-depressants might have counselling training among other skills, they don't usually practice primarily as counsellors, as that requires a significantly lower level of qualification and therefore earnings.

    SW

  8. #8
    SheLikesKitties's Avatar
    SheLikesKitties is offline OW/YM 21YR GAP
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    Quote Originally Posted by Slow Worm View Post
    It seems that the term 'counsellor' is getting used in a broader sense now, but that sounds a long way from the Rogerian model. He sounds more like a Freudian than a counsellor - analytical and interventionist, assuming there is likely to be a real underlying problem quite different from the one the client reports.
    The guy is a psychiatrist, so he did study medicine. Through my life I have visited both psychologists and psychiatrists, depending on what they advertise is their specialization. This guy advertised only as counsellor.

    I was hoping he would help me analyze my feelings and also the disturbing fight over the bread stick. It may sound funny or unimportant, but the fact that the object of the fight was so trivial, compared to the magnitude of the fight is what left me baffled. The reaction was similar to him finding me in bed with another man.

    He (the doctor) treated it as if it was a pillow fight, while I wanted to know if it was something to be considered domestic violence.

    Yesterday I talked to a friend and colleague of mine who happens to have studied psychology, and she gave me very good advise about developing a succession timeline together with my son, but, that I should do this next year, because now I have to deal with the holidays and my mother-in-law's visit and it's better to start fresh next year.
    You know it's love when the pain of being apart is greater than the pain of being together.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by SheLikesKitties View Post
    The fight with Nick was about a garlic breadstick.
    At the risk of going off topic and of lowering the tone, I think I can envisage a Freudian's interpretation of the symbolic significance of a garlic bread stick to a man ....

    SW
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