The Case For The Defence

Friday 6 September, 2002

This week has been all about building Karaj’s case against the accusations from Robert’s wife. After she found his personal journals last year, she complained to the governing body, the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy (BACP). The whole experience was a lesson for everyone in how to deal with accusations and personal challenges. For instance, Karaj received the official complaint through the post in April this year, but did not open the envelope until he had formulated a plan of action for himself. Even before the complaint, Karaj insisted this was a serious issue and one which we should all contemplate and look deep inside ourselves for our position and our solutions.

The date for the hearing was set for 20th September. We had already put a lot of work in, but now we had only three weeks to prepare a case for the defence. One which would honour Karaj’s principles as well as showing respect for all parties. He had received professional criticism from one of his peers, but nothing deterred him. He was focused, he had his own procedures and he had our support. We worked hard all this week to finalise as much as we could. As with everything Karaj did, there was a therapeutic aspect to our work and, as a result, we all learnt more about ourselves, each other and about the process.

Sunday

I saw how I act the joker and set myself up to be mocked. I go along with it and become the centre of attention as a jester for people to make fun of. Is this what I want? No.

Worked well with Simran correcting documents while the other three men worked together on the allegation responses. Priya and Karaj worked together sorting documents and preparing the submission, as well as preparing the work for George’s INSET day tomorrow.

Worked steadily and built up momentum over the course of the evening on the BACP work. Again, saw the importance of a systematic approach. With numerous documents and numerous changes being made it is vital to have a methodical approach and record everything.

Monday

Ishwar returned from his INSET day with George. It went very well and Ishwar took to it easily. He is now seeing what Karaj has been saying all along. That he is capable, that people do listen to him and that he can take this experience further and use it to change his role in his work.

When Karaj arrived, the three of us chatted about building on achievements – the BACP case, the INSET day. Recognising achievements. One thought I had as the supervision came to a close was that families often don’t know where we are but they want to keep us where they are. The group members know where we are and we want each other to grow.

For the rest of the day, from 15:00 to midnight, with two hours for yoga, we worked further on the BACP case. I started off calmly because I knew we’d pick up speed. And we did. I was very involved and worked well – so I was relaxed, not anxious. See the difference. At the end of the night Simran made the point that the use of client statements is a tricky issue because the clients may only be writing such things in order to please the therapist. With this, Simran has opened up a whole new avenue which needs exploring.

Summary of the day: I’m back into feeling my body through the physical exercise, physio and yoga. Tired but survived very well. Slowed to Ishwar’s pace to begin with – this is the trick. Felt anxious and inadequate before yoga but decided to take control afterwards and as a result felt empowered and effective. After Simran’s insight, we finished the day with talk about the rigidity of the BACP submission, the need to introduce some flexibility and an olive branch in order to allow things to move forward, and even Heisenberg’s principle in connection with clients’ motivations and the use of their statements – the more you look at these things the more everything changes.

Tuesday

Intense work all morning from 07:30 until 13:00 in order to get the docs ready for Karaj to take them to London. I then carried on working on the submission until one o’clock the next morning for our visit to the lawyer’s tomorrow.

Wednesday

Completed the second submission for the lawyer. In my calmness I saw how I otherwise take people’s anger and anxiety personally. Here I could remain calm because I knew what I was doing i.e. in control. At their offices I was immediately impressed. I felt the same inferiority I’d had at the banks, surrounded by suits and important people. Karaj on the other hand sat and analysed people as we waited and was quite comfortable with himself because he is in control. I settled down once we met with the lawyer.

Back at the house, I welcomed Harriet, Ishwar and then Simran for this evening’s supervision. I looked at the diary plan and my to-do list, but found it difficult to come up with any agenda items. It’s as if my stuff isn’t important. The conclusion of the session for me was that noticing people (their positives/attractions or negatives/repulsions) means you’re in a game. Look for their humanity and you’ll be okay. Don’t take life personally; just think why these things are happening to you (analysis). Don’t hang on to things or you will lose the jewel of being who you are now.

Thursday

Karaj talked to me about the other two people who had worked closely with him, but who had walked out. He told me I am where they were just before they left. Karaj’s attention is divided at the moment (because of the BACP case) and it was the same back then too, when each of the other two had walked away. Be aware of this. When it gets stressful and Karaj isn’t around, that’s when I am likely to walk.

Friday

Feeling tired and cannot get up early to do my exercises. Putting pressure on myself to get up and do an hour when 15 minutes is enough to start with. During our early morning chat, Karaj tells me I really need to observe and notice my envirionmrent rather than be self-centred. People are self-centred because they are children who never grow up.

Karaj and Simran worked together on the BACP submission. It’s easier that way because then I don’t get so involved in Simran’s anxiety or Karaj’s challenges. Karaj challenged Simran firmly and I tried, with some success, to remain unaffected by it. Don’t take things personally. Even when I was challenged I remained firm with what I knew I had done, and kept calm because of that. If I am sure of myself, I can remain steadfast in the face of challenges.

I had difficulty in focusing fully in the afternoon – just like yesterday. Don’t blame the tiredness.

Karaj told me to communicate what I was doing, but when I did so he told me not to disturb him. I took this personally but did not lose it altogether. The fact that Karaj came back to me in an instant and explained in a calm way what was happening shows that he recognised what I had tried to do. The whole session was a check-in after all the work which has been done over the last few weeks. I talked about what I have learnt recently from the BACP work: be systematic, don’t rush into things, use the support of those around me, and verbalise: communicate.

We (Karaj, Dev, Simran and myself) worked all through the night to complete other important work before we all dispersed for the weekend. I took a couple of early comments from Karaj personally, but not much. I felt very tired at around 04:00 but by 06:00 I was wide awake. Simran and I worked well and I was impressed with Simran’s hawk-like sharpness. He picked up all the fine details and kept my hurry up driver in check. In turn, I was aware of being sucked into his detail, so together we were able to maintain a healthy balance and momentum.


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