Some goals my therapist has suggested and the beginning of the process


So I’m going to post a bit about what my therapist and I talked about in Monday as far as goals and some things to think about in dealing with this. One long-term goal she’d like for me, is for me to be able to cry. I don’t cry at least not for myself. It’s weird I can cry when watching something sweet like a long-lost relative reunion show or Extreme Home Makeover when they help someone and it’s really moving. But when it comes to crying for myself it doesn’t happen. I can’t cry for me or about how I’m feeling. She says normal people cry and I should be able to cry and feel safe so we’re going to work on that. I’ve noticed that she focusing a lot on me “feeling safe” to experience emotions etc. I guess because it wasn’t safe when I was growing up. Also she gave me 4 steps to take care of feelings when I become aware of them, some of which, those of you who read this blog are familiar with yourselves:

  • Label the feeling (sad,mad,scared or happy)
  • Ask: what triggered it?
  • Ask myself: is this a familiar feeling? And say to myself “it’s ok for me this, it’s normal”.
  • Lastly: What do I need to do to take care of myself?

She says part of the problem is that I don’t know how to care of myself in the sense that I don’t know how nurture or comfort myself. I have to say that’s a really weird thought to me. It sounds weak like ‘Oh boo hoo I need comfort! Wawww I need nurturing!” It feels silly and I have no idea what she’s talking about. She said when I feel sadness I’m supposed to comfort myself in some way. She suggested thinking about what my grandmother would say to me if she were alive, but that was not good because something horrible happened to her that was very traumatic for me and when she said that I dissociated during the session. Anyway she had mentioned if I feel angry to ask myself if I need to talk to the person I’m angry with. That wouldn’t work because the person I’m usually angry with is the person who abused me. She said if I feel fear I need to find out what to do, which we’ll work on. We’ll be working on all these things and then some but she wants me to get to the point where I can tolerate feeling normal emotions without dissociating.

I’m curious about one particular aspect. For those of you in therapy, what is the goal of your therapist when it comes to DID? Is it integration of your personalities or is it co-consciousness instead? I’d love to hear from anyone on that subject.

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About CimmarianInk

Abuse Survivor Diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder PTSD and Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID) also known as Multiple Personalities
This entry was posted in bipolar disorder, depersonalization, derealization, DID, dissociation, dissociative fugue, dissociative identity disorder, fibromyalgia, headaches, Medication, Meds, Mental Health, Psychiatric Drugs, Psychiatric medication, Psychiatry, Social Security Disability, Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Some goals my therapist has suggested and the beginning of the process

  1. roseroars says:

    She really gave you a lot to think about and do. Don’t feel like you need to accomplish all of that before you see her again. Just go at your own pace and don’t become overwhelmed. I think she wants you to create new patterns and pathways and that takes time, so relax and be gentle with yourself.

    You wrote, “…I’ve noticed that she focusing a lot on me “feeling safe” to experience emotions etc. I guess because it wasn’t safe when I was growing up.” – yup. Safety is a HUGE issue, and one I forget. I’m impatient sometimes and want to “Bring it all on, baby!” and get it over with and then I get flooded with memories, emotions, sensations, etc., and it’s not a safe space to be in. I think safety also means physically being in a safe space so you can allow yourself to work on issues or do your therapy homework.

    My therapist allows me to choose my goals, explore them, and decide if they are healthy and worth working towards. At this point integration is not a goal. Simply existing in a healthy way and being safely co-conscious is. It just depends on what you feel is best for you, and you can change your goals whenever you see fit, but I think it’s important that your goals are good for everyone inside you.

    Take care of yourself and don’t become overwhelmed with all that she talked about in therapy. Just relax and go one bitty step at a time. Go at your own pace while everything sinks in.

    Lisa

    • CimmerianInk says:

      Yea it was a lot and it all sound unpleasant! lol! I think she’s thinking long-term and I don’t know what long-term means. Is it like 6 months? A year? I have no idea. The crying is going to be HUGE for me and I’m not remotely ready to tackle that full on. I believe that she thinks as we work through the issues it will come in time. She does want me to choose my own goals, but I keep focusing on dealing with the issues I have now about myself that stem from what happened to me in the past. And my abuser lives here in town with me (my mother) and is still in contact with me so I’m trying to figure out how to get her out of my life as much as possible. The trouble is I feel a responsibility as her only child to make sure she’s taken care of in practical ways. My therapist says she gave up that right when she abused me. I’m trying reconcile that with my natural disposition to be a responsible child (adult child I should say). *Sigh* Ugh! etc. Thank you for your comments and thoughts and I’m going back to catch up on everyone’s blogs so I can get to know you guys better. You all have so much going on and have been through so much!

  2. meredith says:

    Wow!! Your therapist has some pretty intense objectives for your starting point! I not only FEEL like crying for you… I am. (You can have my soggy tissue if you’re not ready, yet, to cry for yourself.)

    Lisa’s insights are right on. If you have goals that resonate well with your own gut, you’ll experience more satisfaction with your therapy, and external issues about whether to integrate or not will resolve themselves in their own, gentle way. You can’t force anything. Not tears, not feelings, not integration.

    All things come with understanding. Understanding takes time.

    Wishing you a time of rest,
    ~meredith~

    • CimmerianInk says:

      Don’t cry! Oh my goodness! Thanks for offering the soggy tissue 🙂 Time is an enemy for me. Like Lisa I am very impatient which doesn’t work with therapy. Part of the problem is I have no idea what to expect in the future or how therapy is going to go. My therapist realizes though, that my having no idea what’s going to happen makes me anxious and scared (I guess scared? Trying to label an emotion lol). Something that she realized as we’ve started going over this, is that she can’t push me, not that she was trying to, but she didn’t realize and couldn’t anticipate initially how I was going to react to something she said or some memory we talked about etc. So she herself has told me that we need to go slower, and that she needs to follow me and let me lead her where I want to go. I want to say how much I appreciate how supportive you all have been. I’d be in worse shape without your thoughts and insights from yuor personal experiences 🙂

      • meredith says:

        Well. Once again… WOW! I’m glad your therapist finally came to the table for you (it’s her job to realize and anticipate the stress of this journey, by the way… sorry, but I FEEL ticked off that she dumped so much in your lap right off the bat. It sounds as though you’ve been pushed enough over time <:0 ).

        I think it's very normal for DID folk to want time lines, but the irony is that our minds are rather suspended in a nonlinear condition of time. For example, I'm going through menopause…. and puberty. I know better than to see a med doc at this particular point because any test results will likely come back with conflicting information. I know this from experience.

        But I push, too. Don't get me wrong. It's just that this usually drops me to my knees… and then I can't go out to play.

        Oh, one more thing… I needed to have a good cry, this morning. So I'm crying for me while I cry for you. It's a win/ win situation.

        ~meredith~

  3. castorgirl says:

    I concur with the others… be really careful about pacing yourself. I went into therapy expecting to be “cured” within 6 months. There was no way that was going to happen, but when we put time pressures on ourselves, it’s easy to rush things and forget that any issue you’re working on could have a ripple effect amongst the system – what feels like a small thing to you, could be a tidal wave to another part of the system.

    Getting yourself as safe as possible is a huge step in your healing. While I can understand why you don’t want to cut your mother out of your life, can you establish firm boundaries around how, why and when you interact with her? Can you set up systems around your mother, where she is cared for with as little input from you as possible?

    I understand what you mean about the crying… I learned that it was safe, or expected of me, to cry in certain situations. So, I learned to look for the cues around me as to whether it was alright in any situation to cry. But it was never about crying for anything to do with me. We learned to stamp all those emotions down when we were young, because they were so unsafe to exhibit in any way. Learning how to understand and experience those emotions in a safe way is difficult, and will take time (as well as errors, times of being overwhelmed etc). So go gently…

    I also get the “boo hoo” and “toughen up” internal speech… Try asking where that voice/message is coming from… There’s a huge difference between attention seeking and getting normal, healthy needs and wants met.

    As for goals… for me, I’m wanting to work towards a more balanced approach to life. Where I function on a daily basis in such a way that I can experience life… feel joy… feel sad… feel safe… Where there is balance and open communication within the system. Where there is no self-destructive behaviour or self-sabotaging. This is my long term goal. I know that in order to reach that, I have many mini-goals along the way, so I’m trying to take the healing journey in stages/steps, rather than aiming for the ideal and setting myself up for failure.

    Take care,
    CG

  4. Kathleen says:

    My therapist wants integration we r just starting to give meaning to my voices in my head and I rooms for most of my alters but it seems more are coming so weird it makes me seem crazy

    • CimmarianInk says:

      Hi,

      The goal isn’t actually up to your therapist. I read that some parts may intergrate on their own, but for myself, my goal is co-consciousness not full integration because I’ve had parts for so much of my life that I would miss them.

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