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Re: How I should have acted to begin with

Posted by Daisym on July 29, 2006, at 0:55:02

In reply to Re: How I should have acted to begin with pseudoname, posted by antigua on July 28, 2006, at 22:38:42

I think it is much easier to point to "lack of scientific information" to prove something, rather than disprove it. What I mean is, those who don't believe in recovered memories cross their arms and say, "prove it" and if you can't to their satisfaction, they can say, "see -- not reliable, no proof." But someone who has recovered memories can't exactly say, "NO, you prove that I don't..." (this is clear as mud, huh?) I guess it is the over generalization and zealot attitudes on both sides that I would quarrel with. All I can tell you is that as a professinal woman, with an MS, a reasonably dubious mind, a stable life and no drug or alcohol problems, recovering the memories I have, and experiencing the flash backs has been a mind blowing experience. I mean, I always "knew" but I didn't know the half of it. And once this started happening to me, believe me, I researched it. My therapist teases me about how much time I spend in the University library stacks. I tend to think about teething children and runny noses. Every mother in the world will tell you that children who are teething have runny noses. But it still hasn't been scientifically proven.

I'm interested in what you consider main stream therapy too. From my research, trauma work includes remembering, processing and working it through with a trusted "other." You begin to sort out what is true and what was embedded in you.

I have to tell you that while I am a great believer in CBT, I don't think it is typically effective with csa survivors. Parts of it are, but the overall experience lacks the trust and relationship rebuilding that is usually needed. I know that CBT has many studies (often paid for by insurance companies) that show efficacy for large numbers of therapy patients, but individual therapy is so much harder to scientifically measure and standardize. So the research is slower to come and less "impressive" in some ways. Why then do so many csa survivors talk about the healing they received from the relationship they had with their therapist...psychodynamic in nature?

In my fellowship program, we looked at PET scans of traumatized children and you could see the rebuilding and changes that occur when relational therapy and play therapy techniques were used. It is fascinating to see what a difference, at a brain stem level, a caring individual makes.

I'm glad you identified yourself, btw. And yes, we've had some interesting discussions in the past. I'm not saying that there haven't been cases of false recovered memories and bad therapy that encouraged this to happen. But I think any therapist who is intent on "do no harm" would know that abandoning someone who begins to talk about this stuff would be so harmful and retraumatizing. This isn't a place for amateurs, I think as a therapist you must be oh so careful not to lead, not to suggest and to titrate things so that the patient isn't overwhelmed and pushing too hard.

It's late and I'm not sure I'm making sense so I'll stop. I think my final thought is why would someone want memories like these? This has been the most painful thing I've ever done in my life.




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poster:Daisym thread:670899