Uncertainty

I’ve been trying to post this for three and a half hours, but WordPress and Firefox aren’t playing nice. Every time I try to post, it gets stuck saving and won’t let me publish the post. Anyone know how to fix that? For the moment I’m posting from my phone, but that’s annoying as hell.

*

I’m feeling very sad and alone today. Roommates are gone for the weekend, which is nice, and my weekend is going to be crazy. Saturday morning, I’m collecting signatures for my AG candidate, and in the afternoon, I’ll be collecting signatures for my gubernatorial candidate, who will be in town. Sunday morning I’m collecting signatures for my AG candidate again, and in the afternoon I’m going to a house meeting about a NARAL initiative in Massachusetts. I’m going to be exhausted…but it’ll give me a respite from the crap in my head.

I’m still on the fence about what to do about the therapist situation. Part of me wants to go without one for a while—to see how I do, to prove to myself I won’t fall apart without one. Also because it’s just too exhausting to keep starting over. Even the idea of looking makes us want to go back to bed and burrow under the covers where it’s safe and warm. There’s some merit to the idea of at least seeing if we can do okay without a therapist because maybe then we won’t be so terrified that we’re dependent on them.

On the other hand, if things do get bad, then we’ll be trying to do the therapist search in the midst of a crisis, which probably wouldn’t go so well. That could be disastrous, especially since S and her agency seem really gung-ho about hospitalizing people. S has been a little pushy about getting me to see a therapist connected with her agency, and I guess we could give that a try. We could at least ask if they have anyone who works with DID. But I’m a little concerned that they would insist I keep seeing their therapist, even if it wasn’t a good fit, just because they’d be connected with the same agency. That’s a fight we don’t need.

I could try looking for a new therapist on my own, I guess. I found a few online who say they treat dissociative disorders, though I don’t know if that includes full blown DID. But phone calls fucking TERRIFY me. I never know what to say, and I trip all over my words, and I end up feeling like such a fuck-up that I want to cut. I think it’s that I don’t know the proper protocol or etiquette for calling a potential therapist for the first time. How much do I say? Do I just ask if they take my insurance and if they’ve worked with DID patients before, or should I ask about their treatment approach, philosophy, availability, etc.? How much information should I leave in a voicemail? I want there to be clear rules, and there aren’t. That terrifies me to the point of paralysis, for some reason. I’m not sure why.

I’ve also thought about devising our own therapy program for us, but I might be deluding myself. I mean, how much progress can we make without insight from someone outside of us? Sure, writing is helpful. We could work through the Coping with Trauma-Related Dissociation book that’s currently buried under dirty laundry on our bedroom floor, but is that enough? And would I really even have the motivation to do it without someone pushing me to do it? There’s a reason it’s been buried for months.

I wish I knew what to do.

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10 Comments

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10 responses to “Uncertainty

  1. Bourbon

    Do the potential therapists have email addresses? I find emails are the best way to start off conversations with them because it means you don’t have to deal with phone anxiety and you can put as much (or as little) as you want to write. All those questions you put above are important and you have every right to ask as much as you want or need to. Their view point on how to work with DID is very important though, and whether they are going to work for integration from go or let you decide what YOU want for your future. I think you’re right doing it before a crisis is a good idea. I know you want to prove to yourself that you can live without a therapist but I guess I see that as a person suffering from asthma trying to prove to themselves that they can live without their asthma inhaler. Extra support isn’t a sign of weakness- in whatever arena of your life. Wishing you the best with all this! x

  2. I was going to say the same as Bourbon started out with….when I was on the hunt for therapy (and was in crisis) I started with email. I told them what I was dx with (CPTSD, anxiety and depression), asked their fee schedule and asked for their field of interest/ focus. Remember you’re looking for you and they are the ones who should be providing info, not seeking it. Anyway. Email is easier for me too.

    I’d say keep busy (which you certainly are!) doing what you love and working in the field and start looking for someone new as you can. It’s scary either way so might as well not stress over it. Xx.

    I had issues with Firefox and WordPress before as well. I had to switch to Chrome to get it to work again.

    Much love. Xx.

  3. Like Grainee I have gone to using Chrome. It is not a difficult switch.

    Calling therapists is tough, I agree. With voice mail I tried to stick to giving my name, contact info, how I heard of them and what I need, my “condition”. The worse thing is that when they tended to call back when I might not be in a private or focused place. Email does have advantages. It was not ever an option for me, I was just given phone numbers.

    The really cool thing that happened with my last crisis was that my G.P. referred me to a person within her practice for a one time visit who then suggested a couple providers from a list who might be good matches. The first person did not work out. At my fourth appointment, I told her I needed to switch. By then I had done some research, talking to people in my rather small community about their experiences. I spend that last session going over the list and she actually helped me, along with my G.P. make a switch to someone I was thrilled with. You are in charge, but sometimes if you play your cards right the “professionals” will behave and be professional about getting you what you need.

    Kudos on the political involvement.

  4. everyonesgottagrub

    Hi Hope! How did everything pan out for you? I, myself am a fan of therapy. I won’t get into all of the nitty gritty details of my past but I have had a couple absolutely incredible therapists. From a broken childhood to abusive ex’s, I found therapy to be a way to get reassurance, guidance and support. NO one can ever have enough support! I owe my life to them. Find a therapist you truly connect with. Go with your gut feeling. It’s so hard to tell over the phone or email but trust your gut. If you hate the phone, that’s understandable! Start with emails, and express what your intentions are. Read up on therapists too, what their philosophy is. Everyone is different. Let me know how it goes. 🙂 Hoping and wishing the best for you!

    • No real decisions yet. I’m not good at decisions, so often my outcomes are simply the result of lack of action.

      I’ve had some really great, helpful therapists…but not lately. This was #4 in three years. There are several barriers–I have a somewhat rare diagnosis that many therapists aren’t comfortable treating, I have crappy insurance, and I live in a mostly rural area. But at this point the greatest barrier is that I just don’t feel like I even want to bother trying to trust someone new. It seems okay at first, but eventually it blows up in my face and leaves me even more dysfunctional and hurt than before. It just doesn’t feel worth it.

      Of course, I may change my mind five minutes from now…but probably not. I know I should look for a new therapist, but I’m just too tired of being burned.

      • everyonesgottagrub

        Aw that sounds really frustrating. My heart hurts for you. I hope that you are able to find a new therapist that you like and trust. It is so hard to find – but once you do, you know you will be so relieved. When the time is right, you will find what you’re looking for! Through all of these barriers, you will succeed. I know it! Have you ever considered therapy over skype or facetime? Therapists that I used to see, who are now three hours away, will do this and it help. It’s not the same as being face to face, but it at least keeps things up to date, real, and helping me with the right support and ear.

        Is that a possibility?

  5. I have an article on how to look for a new therapist. I’ll post it to the group. I hope you find one soon. I think you do need one. It sounds like you are in a lot of inner turmoil. XX

  6. I have been pretty lucky with the therapists I have seen, with the exception of the first one that I was connected to through my church (that went REALLY badly). I was connected to the next 2 through the local rape crisis team and women’s shelter. That might not be a bad thing to check into. The one I am currently seeing, took some work to find because I also live in a rural area and I wanted to find someone who did EMDR therapy. I found someone an hour away but it has been good so far. One thing he said to me in the beginning though was that it was my time and if I came in wanting to go a different direction than what he had planned then that was ok. I deeply believe that internally, we know what we need best, but as a previous therapist said, we need someone to witness it. I think if you know what you want, program wise, you should find a therapist that will support that. Ultimately, YOU are in charge of your therapy.

    • Yeah, I’ve not had good luck with religious therapists, but then I don’t do well with dogma of any type.

      I’m still not sure what I want to do about therapy. I’m dealing with pretty serious depression and some PTSD/DID stuff, and conventional wisdom is that I should be in therapy. And there have been times in the past when therapy had been very helpful.

      But I kind of wonder if I’ve passed the point where it’s helpful. I’m not sure that point exists–I may just be trying to convince myself it does so that I can justify staying stuck. But I also feel like I’ve invested a LOT in trying to find a therapist I can work with, but I haven’t had good luck over the last 4 years. There are lots of complicating factors, but I really have tried.

      I think what it really comes down to is that I need to figure out whether I think it’s worth it to keep trying to trust. Right now I’m still pretty hurt about what happened with A, and a lot of me just wants to say screw it, we’ll deal with life on our own. But historically, that hasn’t worked out so well. But I’m not in the same place I was back then, either.

      I can go back and forth like this all day/week/month/year/life. It drives me crazy because I feel like everything’s just undecided. I don’t feel like I can make a decision either for or against going back to therapy.

      • Yeah I get that, Sometimes I wonder if I will ever be able to find a normal life. And honestly, I’m using my last shred of hope to try this new therapist. If it doesn’t work… well… life as it is doesn’t hold much interest to me anymore. It feels too hard and hopeless. But I’m trying.
        I don’t know exactly what the situation with A is so it’s something you’d have to trust your gut with, but it sounds like you were able to tell her honestly how you feel in the letter you wrote and that she acknowledged some of where she went wrong. Is it possible that you can set new boundaries with her that she would agree to? Sometimes it’s ok to get pissed at the therapist… who better, really? It ends up bringing us to a new place. Sometimes that is ok, but I understand if it is not.
        I would say that when entering a new therapy relationship you bring up the things the happened and make sure that right from the start they know what you want and that you have these expectations. And make sure that you get the sense from the therapist that YOU are the one in control of the session. A therapist doesn’t get to tell you how to feel or what to do. They get to poke and prod a bit but it’s only so that YOU get to figure out where you are going next. You are the one who does the work… they suggest and listen. Your gut is the only one that matters. And it might be a long process finding the right therapist, but do it because you deserve it- you deserve the chance to feel better, and people like us, sometimes all we have is the push to keep fighting for that. So keep fighting… 🙂 And you can vent here anytime!!

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