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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
Chaotic_ Offline
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After Counseling Breakdown - September 19th 2017, 09:29 PM

This thread has been labeled as triggering, particularly on the subject of self harm, by the original poster or by a Moderator. The contents of this thread might therefore not be suitable for certain sensitive users. Please take this into consideration before continuing to read.

So, I had my counseling session and today we were working with my relationship with my fiance, and my parents. It was all well and good, until after I got home and for some reason started crying and I couldn't stop.

Like they're any pressing issues that I can resolve with my fiance, thankfully he's incredibly understanding most of the time. There were just a few tweeks my counselor asked me to make and it felt completely doable.

Then we got to my parents and I just feel like I have this grudge against them because they're always focused on my sister and not on me. My sister is the reason all of my depression issues started. I can remember being 14 and seeing my sister have one of her breakdowns and realizing if I acted similarly I would get attention as well. Apparently my similarly wasn't good enough and it mostly just annoyed my parents and they got angry. Apparently I didn't notice all the negative attention my sister got, just that she did and I rarely did.

But anyways I guess I felt like I kind of bashed my parents in my session and now I feel bad about it. I feel bad because they aren't awful, they just have so much going on between my sister who is 30 and still doesn't have her shit together and raising my two nieces because my sister lost custody of them. It's interesting because my counselor had me look at it through a different perspective and I don't know....I'm just so torn I guess. Like that pain I felt and feel is real, I know there's a way through it, whether that's with or without change on my parents side but I feel bad for bashing them, when I guess they really just did what they could with what they had. I'm an independent and sucessful person, they don't have to constantly check up on me, I just wish we had more depth, but am I not partially to blame for that, as well?

We also didn't get to two of the issues I had e-mailed my counselor about which was kind of frustrating because I felt they took priority. One of them being that recently I've been lightly scratching myself, which isn't huge because it doesn't leave a mark it's literally just a temporary feeling of pain to bring me back to reality when things get hard but I feel like it's important to discuss because this is how my cutting started before and I don't want to go down that road again, but if he won't address it and I'm passive to address it, I don't know...

And we've been working with evidence based feelings. So, if I have a negative thought come into my mind I have to find evidence to either support or it disprove it. Thankfully, it's mostly stuff that I can disprove and that's been helping with my negative self-talk a lot but there are times where I just get depressed and there's no reason other than I have depression... and we didn't address that either.

I'm considering writing another e-mail readdressing these issues for the next time we meet, and the obvious new one but I don't know how to clearly write it, Probably because my emotions are heightened. I'm just worried if I sleep in it, it'll go away and I'll never address these issues with him.
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Re: After Counseling Breakdown - September 20th 2017, 10:57 AM

Thank you for writing. I appreciate your story.

I bet your parents would be grateful to have a good relationship with you. That could help them deal with your older sister. Dealing with her must take a lot out of them.

Sorry you felt bad talking bad about them to your therapist afterwards. Shows that you have real feelings and they're in the proper place, which makes you a good person.

I hope you're also seeing a doctor. Talk therapy can help, but when I read the part about scratching and cutting that's when I think there's got to be an underlying medical problem, which is what depression is. Finding the right medication fixed me. I'm still me, just not so f*n depressed all the time anymore, which I had gotten so used to I thought it was normal.

Not all medications work. You'll know when you find the right one. And you'll know when one isn't working, or when one makes things worse, or has bad side effects (just stop taking it if it has bad side effects and go back to the doctor and ask him to try again with something else. It's a guessing game until you find the one that works for you.)

I like to print out my emails and bring them to my therapist session. Yes I still go to a therapist. The doctor got me on the right meds. Now I see the talk therapist to help me with the rest of life. I'll write down any topics I want to talk about. (Then I'll forget to bring the printouts, or what I wrote down, so this doesn't always work. I'm not perfectly organized. I'll keep a list on my phone, then forget to look at it.)

Wow your sister lost custody of her two children. She must be really bad off for that to happen. Is it just mental illness? Or has she also lapsed into drug use? (That happens a lot with mental illness patients. They try to fix themselves with drugs, instead of going to a doctor, and of course that only makes it worse. Means they now have 2 problems to fix. Still it's fixable if they really want it.)

Also helps me if I have someone I can go to and talk it out with. I have my goto person. She's a good friend who knows how to listen. And she knows what to do when I'm depressed. Usually I just want to be around someone, and she's OK with that. Sometimes I'll even have her stay overnight, just so I don't have to be alone. I sleep much better knowing there's someone else around.

And I used to overthink things a lot. So much of your story sounds so familiar to me. Hard not to do that. Medication helped a lot. Then the therapy stuff was able to help. Talk therapy didn't really help until I got on the right medication. (Can't talk my way out of a medical problem.)

Blessings. Thank you for your story. I really identify with it.
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Re: After Counseling Breakdown - September 20th 2017, 09:41 PM

"I guess I felt like I kind of bashed my parents in my session and now I feel bad about it. I feel bad because they aren't awful, they just have so much going on..."

Please know that the counselling room is a place where you are meant to be able to say whatever is on your mind, even if it is not 'socially acceptable'. People can and often do feel things that contradict facts that they know, like you did. That's okay. The truth was that you needed your parents' love and attention, and they weren't able to provide it. However valid their reasons were for being unable to provide that, the fact remains that you needed it and didn't get it. It's okay to grieve for that, and part of that grieving means feeling angry.

All emotions pass, including anger. So honestly, let it happen. Feel the feeling, and you will process it, and it will fade, or turn into something else.

It might also be helpful at this point to remember that there is a difference between feelings and actions. If you feel angry, that is okay. But it doesn't mean you have to act angrily. Remember that you can choose how you behave towards your parents while you're going through this stage. You may need to be a little more distant from them for a while or you may need something else. Closeness to them. A closer relationship with someone else, like an aunt or uncle. You are the best person to figure out what you need.

Figure out what you need in order to navigate this without damaging your relationship with your parents, and give it to yourself. The feeling will pass.

You also said that you're worried about not knowing how to clearly write how you feel but also not wanting to sleep on it because you'll lose the immediacy of what you want to convey. Perhaps it's worth writing it when the feeling's fresh, even if you write it badly, because then you've captured the essence of the feeling. Keep it - don't send it yet - and then look at it after you've slept on it, and can edit it as you feel you need to. It's just a suggestion, but I think that's what I'd do.

Also, as a final note: if you're attending counselling and having this strong a reaction outside of the counselling room, the counselling's working. It's effective. At the moment you're feeling worse, so it might not feel right now as if it's doing anything helpful. But stick with it - you're processing some difficult stuff, which by definition means it will pass.

Good luck, and use the forum here to vent and to process some more if you need to. It's what we're here for
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