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Re: Therapy and termination

Posted by Solstice on November 13, 2010, at 12:42:02

In reply to Re: Therapy and termination, posted by Annabelle Smith on November 12, 2010, at 22:55:47

Annabelle -

I think the anxiety you experience is interfering a lot. I've had periods of intense anxiety as well. A chronically over-stimulated nervous system can make it hard to even really participate in therapy. If you don't take medication to treat the anxiety and/or OCD, you may want to consult with a psychiatrist and give it serious consideration.


> I just wanted to post a follow-up to let you guys know how things went today. Solstice, thank you so much for your reponse to my post this morning. That really helped me get through the day.
> I came in chaotic and stayed chaotic nearly the entire time-- what happens is that my hands go numb, I feel light-headed, it is hard to speak, and I basically feel a sense of panic and embarrassment. So, it makes it hard to be fully present and that leads further to the feeling of chaos and unreality. I think the session "was." My therapist and I tried to talk about leaving it as it was and accepting it-- both of us knowing that things felt to be unsaid and unexpressed will haunt me when I leave but that we both know that.
> I just get so angry with myself that I can't say what I need to say when I am there with him. Because of the anxiety I mentioned, when I try, I usually rush through it and can't really focus on anything of any importance, so it feels as if nothing was said. Often I leave a session and can't remember what happened-- it's a fog.
> I have heard from a pretty reliable source/person that this chaotic/obsessional phase of therapy is not even the most difficult and painful part. She said that yes, this is very very difficult and actually, I know that a lot of suicides occur in the first few weeks/months of therapy, but she said that until you get into the really painful stuff from your past and allow yourself to relive it and re-feel it in therapy, then you can't get better. Is this true? I haven't even been anywhere near that phase yet.
> 3 people (my above mentioned friend, the therapist with whom I just terminated, and a psychotherapist that I corresponded with via email this summer) all told me that they thought my attachment to my mother (or my mother's clinging approach to me) was really at the core of a lot of the intense anxiety I feel. Around the age of 9 (I think) I used to have intense fears that my mom was going to die. I developed a whole line of rituals that I would to to keep this from happening. I know now that is probably OCD - type behavior. But I would have to tap things and eat even numbers of chips and turn the water off and on, etc. and each time, I had to end on an even number, so it is like it never ended. I began to be driven so crazy by it and yet was so embarrassed by it that I came to the conclusion (in my child mind) that I had a demon and tried many times to follow the example of the disciples in the gospels and exorcise it from myself. That only worked for about an hour. And then, of course, it was back. These people tell me that my feelings of the void ahead of me and of annihilation are coming from an enmeshment with my mom.
> I am supposed to graduate from college in May. I come from a really small town where most people never leave. My travelling across the state to a big and diverse city and to the university I am attending now was a huge deal. I felt liberated, like I had a new chance to create myself. Now that is almost over, and I feel like I absolutely cannot function as an adult. A lot of people will just look at me and tell me to get into the real world, to grow up and exit my fantasy. But I can't. It's not that I don't want to work. I am a hard worker; it's that I feel like I will cease to exist when I leave my university and everything that is safe here-- including and now, especially my therapist. I am so afraid of going back home. My brother is 24 years old and still lives at home-- my mom still cooks him dinner and washes his clothes and is upset when he is out all night. I would die there. I think literally.
> I really don't know how to function on my own. I have been trying to apply to graduate schools and go straight into that, but my wise friend (who is in the divinity program at my university-- the same program I want to do) told me that it would be best to make sure I am taking care of myself and figuring things out on that front before launching into Divinity school.
> If I left my city at graduation, I would only have 5 months left with my therapist. I feel like I will die without him. I wonder if it is worth staying here longer-- even postponing grad school-- to work with him and figure these things out. Or am I just too much in the obsessive phase and not seeing things clearly. Maybe he won't and can't be my messiah. But I need someone to be.
> I am so scared. Tonight, all of this pushed me towards feeling really suicidal again. I don't have a gun here, but I know my dad does at home. I keep telling myself that I need to just hang in and that maybe things will get better. That could be a load-- I don't know that they will get better. What I feel is despair. I know that there is so much life to live-- I have made out a list of all of the things that I want to do: like learn new languages and travel and write a book and fall in love one day and take a big risk. But it is so hard. I don't know if I can do it, if I can make it.
> Thanks for letting me talk here.




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