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Chaotic_ Offline
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Abandonment Issues - October 21st 2017, 05:43 AM

So I have issues with abandonment, and I'm always worried that people are going to leave. This includes good professionals that I find. So obviously now that I've found an amazing counselor that's made a difference in my life, I'm terrified that's my 'problems' will be too much for him. (Doesn't make sense, but then again what does &#128517

I've opened up to him little by little. I started going for just 'anxiety' then dropped the depression a few months later, recently I've also dropped the suicidal ideation I face and he's been super cool about it all, so naturally I felt the need to tell him more.

We have a thing where I can e-mail him because, because of my anxiety it's hard to get me to talk in person. He doesn't typically respond unless he can tell I need reassurance. So I emailed him about other issues and he responded with: "I'm glad you know I care and you can trust me with these things. There's really a lot that needs said, but not over e-mail."

For some reason this trigger my abandonment issues and I fear he's going to let me go as a patient. I want to send him an e-mailing telling him this, but I don't want to be that desperate patient.

So I'm not sure what to do.
It's just really overwhelming me tonight.

I have an email written up, I'll post below. I know this long, but I could really use advice, encouragement or whatever you got:

I'm worried since I sent that last e-mail, that now I'm too much. I know on my end this has to be a trust thing, and I also know this is just my fear of abandonment showing face. But I think these things are important to get off my chest and discuss at my next appointment. I also know that even though I'm working on it, I don't always say what I need to say, so I'd rather send it and have said versus feeling bad because I was too afraid to bring it up in person.
   
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mzzm Offline
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Re: Abandonment Issues - October 21st 2017, 06:42 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chaotic_ View Post
So I have issues with abandonment, and I'm always worried that people are going to leave. This includes good professionals that I find. So obviously now that I've found an amazing counselor that's made a difference in my life, I'm terrified that's my 'problems' will be too much for him. (Doesn't make sense, but then again what does &#128517

I've opened up to him little by little. I started going for just 'anxiety' then dropped the depression a few months later, recently I've also dropped the suicidal ideation I face and he's been super cool about it all, so naturally I felt the need to tell him more.

We have a thing where I can e-mail him because, because of my anxiety it's hard to get me to talk in person. He doesn't typically respond unless he can tell I need reassurance. So I emailed him about other issues and he responded with: "I'm glad you know I care and you can trust me with these things. There's really a lot that needs said, but not over e-mail."

For some reason this trigger my abandonment issues and I fear he's going to let me go as a patient. I want to send him an e-mailing telling him this, but I don't want to be that desperate patient.

So I'm not sure what to do.
It's just really overwhelming me tonight.

I have an email written up, I'll post below. I know this long, but I could really use advice, encouragement or whatever you got:

I'm worried since I sent that last e-mail, that now I'm too much. I know on my end this has to be a trust thing, and I also know this is just my fear of abandonment showing face. But I think these things are important to get off my chest and discuss at my next appointment. I also know that even though I'm working on it, I don't always say what I need to say, so I'd rather send it and have said versus feeling bad because I was too afraid to bring it up in person.
Hi cass,
I can relate to what you are saying because that happened to me as well. i used to think that people are just gonna abandon me but I ACTUALLY GOT ABANDONED when i was 14.i was left in a hotel in a different country which changed my life completely. like everything just went upside down. i moved to a different and stuff like it was really bad. but in that moment when i got the call and got told that im being abandoned i realized that it didnt affect me. it changed everything around me but like when i looked at myself in the mirror that evening i realized that i dont need anyone to survive. i came in this world alone and i am gonna go alone.

so in my opinion you are just scared to be alone. if thats the case you have to sit alone take your time and ask yourself some hard questions like why are you feeling like this?, can you survive alone? and, do you need other people to survive or even to stay happy? cuz from what i have experienced is that happiness comes form your inside.
i hope that helps
   
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Re: Abandonment Issues - October 21st 2017, 08:24 AM

He's not leaving you; he just prefers talking in person, face to face.

There's a lot of communication going on, other than words, when with someone, you can read their emotions better, their body language, which you can't do with email.

With email, all that �� and �� and �� and is lost, and that's all important for a counselor to see, as it tells him a lot, and helps him properly understand you. (The emoji faces didn't come out right!)

That's why he wants to see you in person.

(It's challenging being a life coach councilor therapist whatever person, with a very sensitive patient, as the smallest slip in words can send a patient spinning, which was never intended, and if he was face to face with you he would have noticed right away and would have immediately corrected himself; but with email he doesn't get that nonverbal feedback, so it's risky, which is why they prefer face to face conversations.)



(There's also an interesting dynamic, like a paradox, where if one feels a safe person is very close by, they become more confident to venture out independently. It's an attachment dependency that leads to independence.

Like a very young child, wants to be close to its mom, and becomes frantic if mom is not nearby. But with mom around, the child feels safe and ventures outwards, and becomes independent. Kind of a paradox.)

I saw a video where the presenter said they had success with very sensitive patients by teaching therm Mindfulness. I'm not a doctor or counselor, I'm a patient. They showed us that video.

Best wishes! Very encouraging you can write here your feelings, and articulate them well, and express them, and you are aware of them, and seek to understand them. Very encouraging. I feel good positive things will come your way.

(All those question marks above were supposed to be emojis, various emoji faces expressing different emotions. I guess they didn't come out right. Interesting when I can't see the emojis, isn't it? Now I wonder what those feelings were! Is the person happy? Sad? Anxious? Relaxed? Can't tell!)
   
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Re: Abandonment Issues - October 21st 2017, 08:23 PM

It's great that you've opened up to your counsellor bit by bit, and I understand worrying that your 'problems' will be too much for him. However, most professionals will be able to help you, and if not, it's not because your 'problems' are too much but that perhaps you would benefit from working with someone else. But it seems like things are going well at the moment, so try not to worry too much about it!

I understand that your counsellor's response to your email triggered your abandonment fears. But maybe, rather than abandoning you, he is trying to set some boundaries (which are healthy and needed in the therapeutic relationship). In this case, he'll reply when he thinks you need reassurance, but the other contents of your email, can be discussed in the session, which may be more beneficial to you. These boundaries will make sure that you aren't 'too much' as you say.

I get you with the not saying what you need to say! I'm wondering if maybe you can make some brief notes about what you want to discuss and take it with you to your session. And if it helps, show your counsellor as well so that he is aware of the things you want to talk about.

I do think that it would be beneficial for you to talk with your counsellor about how you fear him abandoning you. If you feel you would be 'too much' sending another email then try to hold off and make sure it's at the top of your list of things to talk about instead.


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Re: Abandonment Issues - October 22nd 2017, 03:57 PM

It is quite rare for a therapist to leave there patient. It does happen but that tends to only happen if the patient is not receiving the proper help or if the patient developed an unhealthy attachment to them. By unhealthy attachment I mean, they start feeling romantically attached or they do something that makes the therapist feel uncomfortable and the therapist is unable to get proper boundaries in place.

From what you have described, it doesn't sound like you are dealing with any of that. If the therapist felt that you were messaging too much he would bring it up and work on a plan such as telling you "Instead of messaging me x times a day try and message me x amount during the day". It is very rare for a therapist to just abandon the patient without trying to work through any issues that might be causing them concern regarding the therapeutic relationship.

I think that this would definitely be a good thing to bring up with your therapist because he could, likely help you understand that he is not going to abandon you. He might even give you examples of things that might lead to him thinking you would benefit from seeing another counselor.

Best of luck.


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