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Re: Books as comfort littleone

Posted by fallsfall on June 7, 2005, at 10:28:09

In reply to Re: Books as comfort Tamar, posted by littleone on June 5, 2005, at 22:04:21

I have done the read everything on the planet thing, too. I live near a university, and I used to have 10 psych books out at a time - always.

Over time I have come to believe that I felt the need to read these books because I didn't trust that my therapist was skilled enough to help me. I felt like I needed to read so that I would be able to know what additional things he might need in order to help me. After a while, though, it became clear to me that I wasn't going to be able to be my own therapist - that no amount of reading and studying (and I was reading the texts that were written for therapists - not the selfhelp kind) was going to allow me to tease apart the confusion that I had. At some point I decided that doing my own therapy wasn't something that I could do - no matter how much I read.

At that point, I started to trust my therapist to do my therapy. I stopped trying to figure out what I "should" tell him, and started just being honest. I stopped trying to figure out what he was trying to do, how he was thinking about me. I stopped trying to manipulate him into seeing what I wanted him to see - and this helped me to let down defenses which actually allows him to see the truth more easily.

I even stopped going over every little detail from therapy here on Babble, I accepted that he would figure it out and that he would do what was needed to help me. When I stopped trying so hard to be the perfect patient and figure it out all myself, then things started working better for me in therapy.

But the books did comfort me. They made me feel like I was in control. They gave me something to "do" (I was "doing something constructive" if I was researching psych stuff). Even though much of the time I was just watching the words go by without really understanding what they were saying. When I travel I (still) bring "In Session" with me. So if I miss my therapist I can have some Psych comfort. I didn't bring it to Chicago for the birthday party - I was afraid I was going to have to carry all of my stuff on my back on Sunday afternoon, so I wanted to reduce the weight, and I figured that meeting Babblers might bring me emough comfort.

Some of the comfort things I use now include: I hear my therapist in my head. I carry a rabbit's foot (very soft and inconspicuous). I carry a picture of my therapist (sometimes I like to look at it, sometimes I like to hold it). I play computer games when I need to be "busy" - instead of reading. I also have started to do a little yoga and meditation and find those helpful.

There is a great book, "The Woman's comfort book" that talks about ways to nurture ourselves. You might find it helpful, too.

Comfort is a very individual thing, what works for me won't necessarily work for you. But I bet that you will be able to find other ways to comfort yourself as you move forward towards healthier living.

 

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