For me, setting an intention is key. My first infusion, I set a simple intention to be present and humble during a couples therapy session with my SO (significant other). During the infusion, I did not really notice anything direct, but when I came out of it, I did find myself ready to be more compassionate about my SO’s feelings. For me, having been a very black and white, right or wrong thinker? It is a big deal for me not to try and frame everything in logical terms. I realized that I was more focused on defending my actions than listening to my SO’s feelings and understanding them. I also realized that this way of response left my SO feeling unheard. Another person’s feelings cannot be mashed into a “logical” mold, or at least that is what I am beginning to understand personally. Feelings are feelings. They should be left as they are. An important piece I took away from a session with my therapist is to try and understand “what was or is the other person thinking?” When I came to the therapy session, it was super hard not to try and rationalize my SO’s feelings, but I was finally able to sit and listen. I was further able to acknowledge that the feelings were probably scary, sad, and overwhelming. I was able to understand that feelings could change. I was able to let my SO that I didn’t like the fact that I had brought them to a place where they felt those feelings, and I wanted to figure out how they could feel safe and trust again. I doubt seriously that I could have done that without the shift in thinking that occurred. I think the ketamine gave me an hour where I could decide to explore and feel safe about what had happened, my role in it, and that I wanted to move forward in a gentle compassionate way. It was no longer about winning or losing, or maintaining the relationship, my focus became being present and compassionate. I felt very vulnerable, I was able to voice that in a genuine way.
I won’t say that I set a concrete intention every time, but I have found it to be helpful. My hope for everyone that tries this idea is that they receive something meaningful from the attempt.