I Broke Up With My Therapist Da Da Dum!


I have no idea if that’s how you spell that whole oh wow theme but I tried and…..HI GUYS!!!!! 

I’m not going to get into the whole yadda yadda of what’s been going with me, just know that I’m ill and maybe that’s my life now, I’m honestly not sure at this point. Moving on to the title of my post because, what!? Yep.

Did you know you could do that, break up with your therapist I mean? I knew you could, I’ve always known but I’ve only had two and I would have found it impossible to extricate myself from such an emotionally entangled and multilayered, indefinable relationship. Well…until I did it.

What happened? Why did I end our therapeutic relationship?

It’s actually quite simple as far as the basic reason and I hope that it may help any of you who find yourself in a similar predicament to realize that it’s okay to go. Actually it’s more than okay to go. BUT I have a suggestion about how I went about later that you should take into account so pay attention to that.

It came down to differences in philosophy and basically who we are as people. The differences were so HUGE that the chasm could not be crossed. I thought that perhaps we could build a bridge across that gap, after all I’ve gone to her for what, two years? There was no bridge. Let’s talk about why it wasn’t possible.

The first therapist I had, I had for over a decade and there’s a very good reason why we were able to work together for some long even though we had very different fundamental approaches to life. When I use words like “philosophy” or “fundamental” or whatever, I’m not talking about just specific ideologies like religion or spirituality even though that can become a factor in therapy. You can actually fill in whatever you want those words to mean for you. It can be lots of things, trust me! I learned the hard way.

Anyway, going back to my first therapist. The reason we could work together for so long came down to two things: communication and HER. When she said something that bothered me I would never be able to confront her in the moment because that’s not how I work anyway. I always have to go and think about something for a while, get my thoughts together and then confront no matter who it is. With her I would think about what she said that irked me and figure out what I wanted to say to her, she in turn would listen, make sure she understood exactly what it was that was upsetting for me and then we’d talk about it until we worked it out. Now, a lot of therapist do this but the next part is what makes the difference and it’s something only the therapist can do…

She Changed Her Approached For Me.

Over time through honest communication and RESPECT for my feelings and thoughts and who I am as a person, she tailored her therapeutic approach so that I could fully engage in therapy without doings that made me uncomfortable. She didn’t incorporate ideals that I didn’t believe in. Instead she would ask me how my personal belief system would handle a certain situation and she would tell me to do that. Keep in mind that she had her own philosophies and ideologies but the therapy wasn’t for her, it was for me and she was able to put her over 40 years of experience to use and still use all of her clinical knowledge to treat me while making me feel safe. But that was on her, only she could choose to do that, I couldn’t have forced her. All of the ups and downs and bumps in the road we had (they’re all documented here in past blog entries), they led to us having a once in a lifetime relationship.

What went wrong with my new therapist?

To rewind for a brief moment, my first therapist passed away and gave me to the new therapist beforehand because she knew it was coming. This is a HUGE factor into why I stayed for so long. I thought that she must have known something I didn’t; she couldn’t have made a mistake. I stayed and stayed and stayed even though I knew…I knew it wasn’t working. I knew it and it burns me up that I didn’t put myself first and get the hell out of there a year ago. I’m actually getting angrier the more I write about it. I wasted two years of therapy. Two years! Grrrrrrrrr…

Don’t get me wrong. She said some things in therapy that were extremely helpful! I would be like ‘Whoa! What!? Oh man! I need to go and think about that for like a month!’ So when things like that happened I would think that maybe if I gave it more time we’d be okay. We weren’t going to be okay.

She would NOT change her approach for me.

We had communication hiccups too and we did the same thing, talked it out. But, when she would want to do something either to me or with me or have me do something as part of therapy and I would say no because I wasn’t comfortable with it, instead of accepting my refusal she would frown at me and ask why I wouldn’t do it. If I casually expressed a personal ideology in conversation that was different from hers she would challenge it and then I would have to spend part of therapy defending something that had nothing to do with therapy. When I say no to something that should be enough.

She was very forceful and in your face which at times I could appreciate especially when she really wanted me to hear what she was saying but, it could be startling and come off as aggressive as well. I would be talking about something and in the middle of my sentence she would shoehorn in ‘because of your…’ and it was disconcerting. Are you telling me? Shouldn’t that be a conclusion I come to?

The deal breaker was when I became very, very ill. I needed to talk about what was going on and how to deal with all of the anxiety and how being so sick was making me feel. Well uhhhhh…her fundamental belief is that illness isn’t real. Every week was the same: How are you? I’m really tired as usual, I’m not feeling well. Tell me what’s going on. *I tell her*. You know I believe everything stems from emotion so next time try asking it what information it’s trying to tell you and then send light into it…

I couldn’t get any comfort there. I couldn’t just go in and say that everything sucked and have her listen. I couldn’t talk about how scared I was, how unsure my life was because, even though scientific medical doctors are diagnosing and treating me, she doesn’t believe I’m sick…she doesn’t believe anyone is sick. 

I realized very suddenly that I hadn’t made any progress in therapy. I was going every two weeks now, and there was just nothing.

Fundamental differences. But you know what? Guess who’s fault it is? I’m pointing at myself. Yep. I should have asked her outright what kind of practitioner she was and if she was willing to adapt the way I would need her to. The answer would have been no and we could have gone our separate ways long ago.

So, I left and it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Apparently some people have ended the therapeutic relationship by voicemail, some have simply never shown up for their next appointment. I was going to do it face to face but my husband said it was ridiculous to spend money to say I wasn’t coming back. I decided to write a very long email. I thanked her for everything she did for me and I sincerely complimented all of her good qualities and I acknowledged that her style would work very well with lots of people, just not me. I thought it was a decent compromise because she deserved way more than a voicemail.

Here’s the suggestion I asked you to pay attention to earlier: before I ended our therapeutic relationship I had already found a new therapist. I wasn’t just left out there flapping in the proverbial breeze without a net. I had someone that I was going to begin a new therapeutic relationship with and this new therapist had been recommended to me by my psychiatrist who I’ve been with for 16 years, the one who recommended my first therapist to me. 

I feel cautious optimism but I’m going in now with the realization that I’m not stuck and that I have options. Also unlike my previous therapist, my new therapist lit up when I told her I write. She’s all about writing and when I told her about the blog she freaked out lol. My previous therapist was never interested in hearing what I wrote but my first therapist loved to have me read my writing. I’m hoping that maybe if my new therapist encourages writing, I can get back into posting here regularly again.

It’s okay to leave. Epiphanies can be awesome. 

Posted in Child Abuse, Child Molestation, dissociative identity disorder, Incest, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Psychiatry, Sexual Abuse, Therapy, Trauma | Tagged , , , , , , | 5 Comments

She Lives!!!!


Oh my goodness guys I can’t believe how long it’s been since I’ve blogged! I’m sorry but I have a good reason: I thought was dying for a while, like for real. Seriously. I got really sick, I had something serious happen out of nowhere, it lasted for weeks and it scared the hell out of me. I’m still feeling the effects of it and I don’t know if it’s really over or what to expect but my brain is fried!

I literally and I do mean literally, forgot I even had a blog until yesterday! That’s how badly my actual brain is functioning right not. 

So, please be patient with me as I see where this thing goes and how my life will be affected BUT I’m still here okay everyone? I’m still here.

Posted in dissociative identity disorder | 2 Comments

How Could You Explain DID To Someone?


Recently I was with friends, one of them my best friend who doesn’t know that I have DID, and we were discussing someone we know who has been displaying some odd behavior that seems to be rooted in mental illness. My best friend said that this person implied that they are talking to people in their head and my friend said it sounded like multiple personalities.

Of course she probably has no idea what that means other than what she’s seen on TV but it got me thinking again about how DID has been sensationalized in books, movies and TV and how it’s affected the average person’s concept of the illness and more importantly of the person who has it.

I think people are very frightened of someone with DID. I know the last friend I took a chance on telling I had it reacted badly. I don’t tell anyone anymore and I honestly worry that even my husband who is very understanding, secretly is a little freaked out by me even though he’s never said so. But that could be me projecting my own fears because even I can be a bit freaked out sometimes because I don’t fully understand myself.

I do however know that I don’t go around dressing like a lumberjack or an old lady or a child randomly and I don’t kidnap people (I just saw a trailer for a movie by M. Night Shyamalan about a man with DID who kidnaps girls for some reason).

So back to my original thought: for the average person like my friend, how would I explain DID in a non-scary, no I’m not going to kill you someday, no you don’t need to be afraid of me being around your children, way?

I was thinking of the root of my DID; where it came from, the events…well the original events, even though other trauma added to it: the sexual abuse from my uncle. I would use that, but not the details, to explain DID.

*I actually came back to this spot after I wrote my explanation because it became more personal than I expected. I don’t go into detail but I say things about trying to tell someone and not being believed etc. that may be triggering so I decided to come back and add a warning*

I would say…imagine that you’re 4 years old and someone much older and much bigger than you does something so scary and so terrible that your little 4 year old brain can’t take it, it’s too much, but you don’t die, you live. What would your little 4 year old brain do to live? 

Well there’s so much terror and fear that part of your little brain breaks off and says “Okay, I’ll handle this part.” and it goes away from the others. But there’s also anger because someone hurt you so much but you couldn’t fight back because you were so little. You were only 4 and no one helped you. In fact, one of the grown ups left you alone there. You tried to tell someone who loved you but they didn’t believe you and you’re so angry!!! But you’re only 4, your little brain can’t handle all of that anger, so another piece of your brain breaks off and says “That’s okay, I’ve got this. I’ll hold onto to all the anger.” And it goes away from the others.

But that’s not all. There was sadness…so much sadness…you were all alone in that room…you were all alone in your room because you couldn’t tell anyone…you were all alone your whole life…You were 4 years old. How would your little 4 year old brain handle so much sadness? It can’t so another part of your little brain comes forward and offers to hold the sadness for you. This one is different though because sometimes the sadness is so deep that it spills out and the little girl cries and but she doesn’t understand why.

The bad thing that happened was so bad that lots of pieces of the little girl’s brain had to come forward to take the weight of her feelings because she was only 4 and then she was 5.

Some of the pieces got names like Nikki and James  Other pieces just are and they’re okay with that. They did their job. The little girl lived.

-That’s how I would explain DID to someone. I don’t think it’s scary. I think it’s a logical way for a child’s brain to handle a ridiculously horrifying experience. In my case, added trauma later in life added more alters but the core process is the same. It makes sense to me.

Posted in abuse, Alters, Child Molestation, DID, dissociative identity disorder, Incest, Multiple Personalities, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Rape, Sexual Abuse, Trauma | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 8 Comments

Tea


I’m thinking about tea. My autoimmune disease has been flaring very badly for over a month. I just had surgery five days ago, but right now, I’m thinking about tea.

I’m drinking a cup of Sleepytime Tea, you might know the blend. My mom used to give it to me when I was a child. You know what I’m wondering? Why did my mom need to give me Sleepytime Tea all the time? It’s soothing; it’s meant to calm. People drink it in the evening to wind down, to help with sleep. I was a child, why did I need it?

I’m just having a random thought while drinking the tea I remember my mom giving me. My feelings are coming back. They’ve been coming back for maybe two days? I remember that I had a mom now. I’m sad again but I can probably do things that I enjoyed again too so that’s a positive. It is, it really is.

It would be nice if I didn’t feel like death though. My body is getting worn out from my lymph nodes being swollen and my lungs hurting when I breathe; my ribs hurt and I feel like I have the flu every day all day long. I’ve lost weight. I get hit with fatigue like a freight train. The medication I was given to treat the symptoms hasn’t worked. I don’t know how long it will take to recover from the surgery so that’s in addition to what was already going on. 

I’m going to drink my tea.

Posted in Child Abuse, Child Molestation, depression, Incest, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Sexual Abuse, Toxic Parents, Trauma | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

Need Help With Some Statistics For Next Week’s Therapy


I realized today that my therapist insulted me during our session this week. Well, not me specifically but my culture. About 99% of the time I identify as just a human being and I don’t feel the need to separate myself from others by race or nationality but my therapist made a statement that sexual abuse is rampant in my culture as if it was so different from everyone else’s. She tagged on some statement about talking to someone of my race and finding out they had a friend or something who had three children with someone but had never married the father and how that was so outside of her experience and I felt like my mouth wanted to fall open.

It was insulting. Sexual abuse happens in all cultures, which she agreed with when I stated that, but she was implying that it happens differently and in some sort of more insidious way in mine. I feel that I can’t let that assumption stand. I also just remembered that she’s over 70 years old which I didn’t know until two weeks ago, so maybe she’s dealing with generational issues *insert eye roll here* ugh.

So, do you any of you know any statistical numbers on sexual abuse in different cultures or something like that or places I could get that data? I’d like to have some facts to show her that kids are pretty much victims of hell everywhere sheesh!

Posted in Child Molestation, Incest, Sexual Abuse | Tagged , | 10 Comments

Wow My Brain Is Really Ummm… Crappy Right Now


A brief post is better than none right? My therapist thinks that I’m kind of starving myself of anything I really need (not just physical stuff but things that I like) and that includes blogging which is why my posts have been suffering. I decided to jump on any inclination I had to post, even if it was quick, so that in part, we can stay connected and of course to keep my journaling intact for my own state of mind and reference and to get my mind garbage cleaned out. I honestly believe that I’ll come out of this funk, actually I know I will.

My quick post will be to comment on the fact that I realized a couple of weeks ago that I forgot my mom died. Let me repeat that: I forgot my mom died. And no, I don’t mean time passed and healed some of the pain, I mean I forgot. I not only forgot she died, I forgot that I had a mother in the first place. You should have seen my face when I realized that I had  a mother and she was dead…yeah….

I’m pretty sure I’m having dissociative issues in the extreme! I have some ideas why but that’s for another post. But hey, I posted!!!! Fist bump! Do people still do that? Whatever, I’m doing it!

Posted in abuse, Alters, Child Molestation, depersonalization, dissociation, dissociative identity disorder, Incest, Multiple Personalities, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, Trauma | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments

All Stopped Up


I think there must be such a thing as emotional constipation. That’s what I’m going to call this. I am completely stopped up! Emotionally. I am frozen. I can’t do anything I like or enjoy and it’s not even depression. I’m not eating enough but it’s more like I forget or I lose my appetite but it’s not intentional. I’m not knitting, or blogging, or reading books or playing games. The biggest shock to me came yesterday though after therapy when I realized that I haven’t thought my mom in…days? A week? I don’t even know! It’s like I forgot about her or I forgot that I forgot! 

I think I’ve shutdown something inside of me or lots of things inside of me in a way I haven’t done before and I didn’t even realize it. It’s actually really scary now that I see it.

So I’m sorry that I’ve been gone. I’ve got some therapy homework to do that will be extremely dark and unpleasant but maybe it will wake me back up again!

Hang in there with me guys!

Posted in dissociative identity disorder | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments