Forum Replies Created
April 15, 2021 at 7:41 am #377778
Thank you Anita, you have been very helpful to me for a long timeApril 14, 2021 at 7:45 am #377684
I’m not explicitly told it’s my fault but it is implied. When I attempt to vent to my roommate she frequently cuts me off and offers suggestions which I hear as “your wounds are invalid and is your fault, if you just thought these thoughts or did this self care thing you wouldn’t feel that way” this is the response I get often from friends, and my supervisor. My therapist is probably the only person who actually hears me (validates) then offers suggestions after making sure I feel understood. Most people don’t listen very well they want to fix. I used to get caught in this trap being from a math/science/mechanics kind of mindstate where all problems can be fixed and have concrete solutions. Not saying they’re aren’t concrete solutions to people problems, just that the process is not as simple as replacing a component or adjusting a chemical in my brain, been there done that. People need compassion, especially highly self critical people like myself. It’s so rare for someone to listen without offering up their egotistical self-help style advice. That’s all my heart wants is to be validated again not told it’s my fault for being wounded. I’m also not trying to absolve myself of responsibility if anything I probably place too much of the blame of myself alreadyApril 14, 2021 at 7:33 am #377681
i hear you I do have a therapist and I am a therapist. I coach people down the exact path you and Anita are both laying out here I.e. cultivating the nurturing adult to care for the wounded child. I have seen it work on my clients and myself…
I’m facing a complicated situation with my problems as I see it. I’ll try to explain as clear as I can.
Being a black therapist in a city where there are less than 5 (male) total means that I am easily identifiable. Why is this a problem for me? I want the same protection of anonymity that people get from their AA or NA groups, but in reality there’s a high likelihood I could see a client which could lead to me being reported for using cannabis or whatever else I do that doesn’t fit the mold of how a therapist “should” act. I’m sure you might be thinking that is an unlikely scenario but my whole life has been unlikely. All that to say I have limited options for support groups if any at all I’m looking for something right now…my emotional health was probably at its peak before I went to grad school and was in a men’s group for about 6 months. The reason being I knew I had support at least once a week I could count on and I didn’t have the pressure of worrying about my livelihood being threatened by by being vulnerable. This is really a huge issue for me, the answers to my problems are really simple: get support+be vulnerable=a stronger inner compassionate adult to care for my woundedness. Execution In reality it’s way more complicated than that for me because of my profession and my race. I’m not trying to be like oh poor me blah blah blah, but seriously I’m not sure people understand how perfect I have had to be to fucking survive in America. (Pardon the language but I’m tired of being told my worries are invalid)April 13, 2021 at 4:31 pm #377648
Thank you for your responses. I’m not religious. I gravitate towards the Buddhist philosophy if anything…
I’m pretty sure I’m just reaching a breaking point with my lifestyle. I feel the need for another, not necessarily a partner just another person or people to hold space for my grief. The isolation is my biggest enemy. And I’m tired of being told it’s my fault I feel this way, i just need to change my perspective or do this or that. There is nothing more I can do.April 13, 2021 at 10:39 am #377611
Im stressed and dont feel like i cant handle all the responsibilities in my life by myself. Im screaming because i know i need to get up and show up for people but my whole body is telling me i need to rest and regroup and i feel an intense sadness of having no one to support me in my loneliness. Its hard to put into words but the feeling tells me i need love and to be told im doing a good job. I guess i feel like im unlovable, unworthy, and just failing to wake up everyday and do the 9-5 thing rightApril 13, 2021 at 8:03 am #377599
Thank you Anita,
Believe me I’ve given up hope, the suffering is the frustration i feel at attempting to get my needs met and failing over and over. Maybe that is me hoping for a life where i dont cry myself to sleep, and wake up screaming at myself to get out of bed. I canceled my day today and just feel overwhelmed with work, and the fact that it feels hopeless for me to have any outlet for my grief.April 8, 2021 at 3:12 pm #377383
I’m always shocked at how much work you put into your posts. I am shocked that anyone would take that much time out of their day to focus on me in such detail. I truly appreciate it. To be honest I don’t post here as often anymore because i feel like you work harder than i do on my own problems and that makes me feel guilty that i have made such little progress with myself in the years i have posted here. However i am very grateful you give me and others who post here that level of attention.
It’s hard for me to read through these post’s sometimes knowing i come back here with the same problems time after time and seem to go nowhere with it. My lack of progress is making me feel hopeless.
I understand my mom did a poor job of loving me. Believe me when i say im not waiting up for it either. I don’t know if it’s really doing me any good giving my attention to that relationship anymore. Not saying she and my father didn’t have a profoundly negative impact on my self worth, i just don’t know what to do with the information that my parents loved me conditionally anymore.
I really would just like to get my needs met at this point and it feels hopeless after putting so much effort year after year. i mean maybe im not trying my best i dont know.April 8, 2021 at 5:42 am #377361
Hey Anita, I hope you are doing well
I haven’t been great since i last posted. Still giving in to my addictive behaviors, I’m very stressed with survival worries related to my finances. I’m going to be able to pay my taxes thankfully since they extended the deadline by a month. But it doesn’t feel great knowing ill be 29 this month and ill have nothing to show for it. I’m pretty close to my breaking point. its hard to even type this out. I was seeing a woman last month and it only lasted a couple dates because at one point when she asked if i was doing okay i unexpectedly broke down in tears. The question caught me off guard but really was just another indication of how i’m doing and how stressed and hopeless i feel. Im just not sure how to move forward anymore. All i think about is money and when im not thinking about how i can make it out of paycheck to paycheck lifestyle the weight of loneliness sets in and…i dont know im not great. thank you for checking on me.January 29, 2021 at 9:29 am #373686
I’ve come up with a plan to take back power over my life. I would be interested in your feedback.
- I need discernment with my pain-This means being able to determine if i’m just triggered and feeling hopeless or if what I am experiencing is truly a powerless situation. I’m confident that the vast majority of the angst i experience is being triggered or re experiencing past truama. This insight came about through our communication over the past week.
- I need to improve my self soothing-This means furthering my abilities to soothe the wounded child in me from the nurturing adult/parent within me.
- I need power over my monkey mind-This means better coping and impulse control. Im thinking meditation can help with this sitting in discomfort while creating a grounded mind. The times when i’ve felt like i had control over my automatic thinking and habits were easily the times in my life i’ve felt most confident.
- I need a girlfriend-I need to be brave and learn to tolerate the discomfort of building attachments. I need to stop pretending i can do everything alone. I need to drop the individualistic conditioning of my culture and acknowledge i am human with human needs. I have proven to myself I am a desirable partner, believing nobody is capable of loving me is no longer the issue, its now the fear of someone loving me
- I need to own my job– I’m getting robbed working for other people. I have been on the fence about doing therapy long term. However as i get more comfortable and confident in my skills i know i have something people need and i have been doing this long enough to see good results with people. The practice i work at now has tripled in size and this has only made things more complicated for keeping my caseload organized. i’m not getting my money’s worth. Office space is cheap where i live, im the only black male therapist in what feels like a million miles, this is a no brainier. My goal is to have this going by the beginning of 2021 when i’m fully licensed which also opens me up to even more earning potential.
Let me know what you think. I have to get my life together, sooner than later preferably.January 27, 2021 at 12:02 pm #373582
Thank you AnitaJanuary 27, 2021 at 11:30 am #373577
I am so glad you suggested it may be re-experiencing. I have not looked at my episodes in this way and it makes perfect sense to me. I see this as my self trying to process past trauma. Often when i’m having these episodes my life story viewed from the perspective of a powerless victim is running parallel in my mind to the emotional experience happening in my body. Trauma is stored in the body. Therefore my taxes, relationship attempts, or any significant hardship turn out to be triggers for past trauma. The trigger being the feeling of powerlessness, such as i felt as child. The implication here is that i have not actually processed my trauma and reconnected with my authentic self that was suppressed as child?
I think it is interesting and personally extremely frustrating that I can’t figure this out on my own. It’s not like this is new information to me. I just cant see it objectively as an outsider can. Honestly i don’t even trust anyone’s objective opinion except you and my therapist. Probably because niether one of you make me feel like i’m crazy for being the way i am, whereas other people just don’t empathize very well.January 27, 2021 at 10:10 am #373575
“Your intent in crying a lot at any one crying episode was to rip off the band-aid instead of slowly pulling it off, but seems like what you accomplished is to re-experience the suppressed pain, exhaust yourself (experiencing a temporary relief at best), but release/ resolve very little of the suppressed pain, if any.”
Yes! this is what is happening re-experiencing not resolution. I don’t know what else to do (Which makes me feel bad saying that seeing as im a therapist). I guess the emotion isn’t actually getting resolved. When i said i listen to what it is telling me i meant using my emotion as a guide. So sadness is telling me something i need in this case connection. But then i dont get connection because of the way i am and now i feel like im stuck in a loop…January 27, 2021 at 8:08 am #373566
Okay, so I don’t intend to prolong the pain in those acute moments. That is something I used to do however because it felt “right” to me to punish myself. I try not to do that as much, although it does still happen.
What i mean by digesting my emotions is like the opposite of what suppression was to me. Instead of pushing it down i let it surface and be felt from the beginning to its end, trying to keep myself in a state of mindful awareness while experiencing the emotion. I would liken it to ripping off a band-aid instead of slowly pulling it off. I just want to get the pain over with so i don’t fight it (supress it) and let it run its course.
The exception to this is during times when it is not appropriate to digest an emotion for example when i’m doing therapy with people. I have to notice it, supress it and process it outside of working hours. I cant be crying on the floor of my office while my client is too.
My hypothesis is that i currently have a backup of emotion (and needs) demanding attention that i continually suppress, again for survival or else i may loose my income. This is why i feel being a therapist may not be right for me, because i don’t process my emotions regularly anymore. It was nice having coworkers who were supportive or being in school and having classes where we would process things. I don’t have that community with covid anymore, therefore it just sits on my heart, until the levees break.
I really dont feel like working today. I’m contemplating canceling my day right now. I just can’t focus. I cant manage to get any work done at home, i’m currently a week and a half behind on my notes, im tired, i’m lonely, i feel like shit, and really don’t have a good reason to keep trying anymore.
January 27, 2021 at 6:47 am #373559
- This reply was modified 2 months, 3 weeks ago by noname.
I mean that when I notice myself about to cry or feel overwhelmed with emotion i let it be. I digest it in order to go on with my day or else it will pop up at inopportune times. I didn’t used to do this. I rarely used to cry. If i felt myself near the point of tears i would attempt to suppress or distract from it with my various addictions. I learned this when i was trying to stop cutting. It would be so uncomfortable all i could do is sit with it, listen to what the emotion is trying to tell me, wait (and breathe) until it had passed. are you saying that is not helpful?
I want to make sure i digest my emotions not suppress them. When i focus on my breathing the feeling goes away for me too, although it takes a while, not as long as it used to, but it still lingers. If i had a breakdown like i did yesterday morning for 20mins 5 years ago i would be inpatient right now because it would just keep on going. im confused
Also, you are spot on with what i need most i fear most. I don’t know which is worse for me waiting for someone to text back or going through a week like im having now. Being in relationships feels dangerous to my survival in the sense that if, a breakup occurs > im an emotional wreck > i cant do my job > i dont get paid > i dont survive.January 27, 2021 at 3:29 am #373554
Thank you for believing in me. I need it. Yesterday was tough. I woke up and spent time meditating, hoping to practice some distance between my thoughts/feelings and reactions to them. I’m going to keep meditating daily because I know it’s the single best practice I’ve come across to train my mind.
It was about 1130am yesterday and I had a crying episode, when I had to be ready to see a client at noon. I screamed, cried, and begged for my fire to come back. I had the urge to physically self harm, of course I didn’t but I don’t get that specific urge in that way very often anymore. Where I used to cut now I just try to feel the pain to completion. I know I have a long way to go but damn has it been tough just getting to that point. I finally picked myself up off the floor about 1150 and washed my face put in eye drops and somehow was still able to do therapy for the next 5 hours.
I only slept about 5 hours last night waking up around 430am this morning. I couldn’t sleep because my body is so damn anxious. I know I need to do better with regulating but I feel like there’s only so much I can really do before the biological effects of social isolation set in. My anxiety is telling me clearly we don’t want to be alone. It’s 630am right now. I don’t want to be alone. I’m so used to being able to solve problems but this loneliness feels so unsolvable. Please forgive my pessimism. I feel beat.
I feel like there’s something you, my therapist, and my life are trying to teach me that I’m too incompetent to comprehend