Tag Archives: building trust

Therapy Challenges: I’m giving the wrong impression

Saw TM today. We talked a lot about the disconnection from last week, and what was the same or different about it vs. other times. We also talked about the self-harm and went into a bit of an over-view of the narrative I had done. I had been present most of the session until we talked more about the narrative, maybe? I’m really not sure. I know she asked me to track something, but for the life of me right now I don’t know what it was. Maybe it was dissociation? or triggers? or moods? I would call her to ask, but I’ve already spoken to her about a schedule change, and then called and left her a message asking her not to read the narrative I had left with her… I think that calling her another time would be pushing my boundaries a lot.

Boundaries. Oh yeah, we had kinda talked about reaching out and having that be ok. She had mentioned that sometimes it’s still necessary to reach out when we are struggling because we are all human. She says humans sometimes need other humans when we are in a tough spot… I’m not sure I can justify calling in general, but maybe…

Still not sure what she had wanted me to track… maybe it will come to me later. I know she wants me to work on coming up with other coping skills since the ones I have are getting quite worn. I dunno. It was so hard to find ones that worked even a bit, I’m not quite sure what else to put on my list. She’s focusing on finding a “pattern interrupt”, but I’m not sure how to create one. Things are already different from even a year ago. I find myself at a loss for new suggestions.

TM called just now in response to my message. I think I put her on alert more than I mean to. I know she doesn’t know me all too well, but I have a feeling she thinks I’m more of a risk to myself than I actually am. I’m not sure how to put her mind at ease. She wanted to make sure that the narrative didn’t contain anything that may hint at me being unsafe. I’m not sure how I gave her the impression that it might, but it certainly doesn’t. It’s only a description of what happened 3 years ago. I think I will need to have a conversation around safety. The only issues we have talked about have been in the past. I did admit to the ever-present suicidal ideation, but nothing about any immanent threat. Maybe I should take in that likert scale outline I came up with and flesh it out with her to help find a quantifiable and qualifiable way of talking about safety. It might also help with communicating about the self-harm urges and the flashbacks… I dislike being seen as such a liability when I’m not actually there. I get that it was appropriate at one time, but I’m not in that place anymore. It’s kinda bringing up that feeling of her having pegged me into a certain diagnosis. I don’t like it. There’s too little room for growth if I’m always battling the stereotypes. :sigh: I dunno. Guess I will need to wrap that into the safety conversation. I get conflicting readings from TM. In one moment, I feel like she gets where I’m coming from and is willing to work with what might be helpful. In another moment, I get the impression that she is waiting for me to fall into a specific pattern… Maybe that’s why she keeps using the term “pattern interrupt” when I would say “stepping out of my comfort zone”…  I’m not sure what her field of study was to get her LPC credentials, but her vocabulary is very different from what I am used to for a bunch of stuff…

De felt I was too dramatic. I never intended to be, but I guess I came off that way. Maybe being so worried about coming off as dramatic to TM makes things look worse to her than they actually are. Maybe me insisting that I don’t want to be too focused on the “distractions” of the self-harm thoughts and the suicidal thinking makes it look like I’m trying to hide the level of severity. The truth is, I know that stuff is just distraction when dealing with the trauma gets too overwhelming. I know how to keep it in check, and how to reach out when it gets too dangerous… I know she has no reason to belive that. I have to figure out how to build that trust with her.

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Imploded emotions

I think my inner world has imploded (or exploded?) and now is flat… I went from really struggling with everything to just being here, existing. I did some art, wondering if that helped even things out? I want to show De (because she would make more sense of it than TL) but that can’t happen, so I will have to try to explain things to TL… I hate having to go back to origins of things. Samantha Jane made an appearance in the art, as did Dotty. I will have to explain them both to TL. Dotty might be an easier explanation than SJ. Not sure how to safely and accurately explain her without getting some seriously questioning looks from people (and she comes out more when I talk about her. I want to make sure TL will be safe to bring her to. Not sure how that will go. It’s fun trying to explain inner children as separate beings but not truly separate, and still not sound totally loopy to the person hearing the explanation. I think there’s also a measure of protection in not wanting to explain SJ to TL)…

I suddenly really miss De again. It wasn’t even that great of a therapeutic relationship (we seemed to stall around the Duckboy stuff at some point), but she didn’t outwardly judge, and she felt safe. I so need that safe feeling again… and I need to not have to spend energy on explaining histories again. I’m spent on that. I wish TL had all that history stuff and I didn’t have to go through it all again now. I get that she needs to get her own impressions, and she needs to learn, but I need to move forward.

Insomnia’s back again, and I am short on benadryl tonight, so it will be another night of poor sleep. I’ll be a hot mess again by Friday’s session if the lack of sleep continues. I do really badly without sleep…


Not much to say of late

Been quiet lately as I have nothing much to say… waiting for Friday to roll around in hopes that this time I will find some connection with TL. I think I may bring it up to her (the lack of connection) and see what she makes of it. I’m half-heartedly trying to find another therapist, but it’s difficult in these parts. Finances limit me to an agency with a 6 month waiting list (where I had seen De), the agency through which I see TL, and one with a 5 week waiting list (where I had seen D)… I could go to the agency-which-shall-not-be-named, but it’s horrible and I’d rather stick it out with TL, or take the huge wait lists before I try there. Heck, I’d even rather be inpatient then go there (which is saying a lot because inpatient down here is pretty horrible)… so TL it is for the moment. Here’s hoping Friday comes fast, and I get something more out of it. I figured out that the thing that really bothers me about TL is the way her questioning and probing comes of as accusatory. It feels like an attack, though I’m guessing it is not meant as one. Maybe if I tell her it feels like that, we can get somewhere? Maybe some connection will happen, and maybe I’ll start to like her more? I dunno. I might just ask to switch if it doesn’t work with her.


Another first

For the first time I can remember, I’m resentful of therapy. I don’t want to go today. I don’t want to open up. I don’t want to trust her. I don’t want to do this… but then again, I don’t want to do anything right now, and I’m in a helluva bad mood this morning (no benadryl for the first time in a while, which meant no sleep, lots of anxiety, and a whole heap of resentment). Ugh.  Someone shoot me?


Learning is tough

I hate myself right now. I had the opportunity to ask for help, and I stumbled. She asked what I needed, and all I could say was to know if she had earlier time this week. I couldn’t admit to struggling. I couldn’t admit to floundering with everything. I couldn’t form the words needed to be able to ask for extra support, even if it would not be something she could provide…

I can’t do this. Daily I fight the urge to down all my pills, or slice my body to shreds. I talk myself out of careless driving, and other destructive actions. I was too scared that she would suggest the er. I was too scared that I’d wind up hospitalized… I don’t want to wind up hospitalized. I don’t need physical containment, but I know that’s what it would sound like. I need support in figuring out how to turn the overwhelming into something I can handle. Except I don’t know how to say that. I know how to say I’m falling apart; not how to say I’m totally overwhelmed and need help with emotional containment… I still have learning to do. And learning sucks.


fog

yesterday’s appointment with TL was much better than the first.  There was a ton of anxiety leading up to it, but I sat it through and met with her (albeit about 30 minutes late because there was a miscommunication amongst office staff).  I was able to give her the stuff I had meant to read her that first time around, and then we talked about some more history (specifically, the brief, cliff-notes version of the stories behind the flashbacks).  She was able to make me feel a bit more comfortable in sitting with her.  I can see her being a bit intense at times, but hopefully we will fall into a balance there.  She was quick to tell me that we didn’t have to talk about what it was that was bothering me, but I found my voice enough to ask for a few more minutes to build up to talking. She seemed to take it in stride.

The hour went by too quickly again, but I let her keep the list.  I hope it helps some. We also switched up the schedule some.  I was going to ask if she had anything earlier in the day (because waiting all day builds too much anxiety), and she was hoping for something earlier also, and on a different day.  We settled on middle-of-the-day Thursday, though that will mean a week and a half between session at a time I should be asking for shorter times between session… Oh well.

I left there emotionally raw and super tired.  I came home with enough energy to fix the bed (had started washing the sheets earlier in the day) and collapse into it.  I took something to help me calm down and sleep, and I am still feeling the effects at 1:30 the next afternoon… I guess this is ok for now.  I guess being drugged-up and only partially feeling the flashbacks is better than the alternative of full-on flashbacks all day… I really need things to change though.  I really need something helpful to get me through all this because it’s exhausting in so many ways…


Spent

5 days of relentless flashbacks that get progressively worse, these last two days I caved and took ativan to help the intensity. They are still here, but in the background somewhat. Did things I never do: called a crisis line (not just the chats) more than once. Admitted the flashbacks to mom. Sent texts to a resource I never seek out… I have gone through my gamut of healthy coping skills. I have tried them again and again. The memories that are coming up need to be voiced to someone trained to hear them, to know what to do with them, to help me set them aside.

These need to end soon.  I’m so spent. Someone on an online support forum suggested contacting TL and asking for an earlier appointment. Aside of the fact that she pretty much made it clear she won’t see me before my time on Tuesday, I’m not sure what she could do to help. I don’t think she has experience in this. and if she asks me what I think would help, I am not sure I could tell her anything other than to hear them, and help put them away. she better not ask me how to help put them away because I have no idea…

I hate when memories have their own time-table. This stuff was supposed to be saved for a time when I have longer with a therapist, and for someone who knows what to do with it all. For when I have more accesses to supports… but flashbacks and memories have a life of their own. Fuck.

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