Do I Need Professional Help?

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  A4U 10 months, 2 weeks ago.

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    The truth is I don’t know what to do. I understand everyone goes through periods of conflict, distress and such but how do I know if it’s time to see a professional about all the problems? I feel as if many of my unresolved issues today originate from the traumatic events I suffered as a child. I’ve spent many, many years suppressing these mental blocks, thinking “things will get better”. But now I’m not sure if it did?

    Before I get into it, I do want to mention that my parents split up when I was six. I grew up in a household filled with emotional abuse – my father would often emotionally blackmail my mother. My childhood is filled with memories of constantly being on edge, worrying about my mother. And I guess, for this reason, I became overly protective of her. As a kid, I’d steal her ID so she couldn’t get out of the house. I also developed a fear of going to school because of this, that I literally begged my family to let me stay home. And thinking it was just a child’s temper tantrums, my father would physically hit me. There’s no way I can ever forget those feelings of utter helplessness.

    It’s also worth mentioning that being the middle child, I had to suffer all the blows my siblings didn’t have to. I was never my father’s favorite and my sister was simply too young to understand anything. So yeah, you can probably guess, I’m incapable of forming close relationships with my siblings.

    My parents had never tried to talk to me about their divorce, not until when I was 14. By then, the damage was already done. I never got to learn how to deal with my feelings and how to confront my issues. And I guess I thought that if I avoided all of it, that somehow it’d become easier because sometimes we just don’t get closure, you just move on, right? And I’m beginning to realize that the consistent pattern of behavior such as not being able to hold on a job and not being able to form close relationships has something to do with this? I recently quit my job on the very first day.

    I’m always thinking of leaving everything behind and start from scratch but if I don’t solve the root cause of all my problems, what good does it do? How do I stop failing?



    Having a professional therapist to talk to can be a great help in untangling one’s thoughts and emotions. It sounds like you’re in a place where your open to that and ready to do the work to help you move forward. Trust your intuition.

    Your post reminded me of a book I read long ago – ‘Learning to Fall: The Blessings of an Imperfect Life by Philip Simmons’

    “From our first faltering steps, we may fall into disappointment or grief, fall into or out of love, fall from youth or health. And though we have little choice as to the timing or means of our descent, we may, fall with grace, to grace.”

    I believe that to be a truth. The moment we are born we are falling. We can fall arms and legs flailing around in fear and panic or like a skilled sky diver arms and legs spread out enjoying the ride.



    Dear Brooklyn:

    Quality psychotherapy reads like a good idea to me. We don’t really move on from a past that  injured us because that past is recorded in our brain, the  injuries are still there. We don’t shed our brain, as we shed  our skin, so the past is there.

    I decided many thousands of times  to “start from scratch” to start  anew. Just shake it all off me and start, and do it right this time. It doesn’t work that way. I failed every single start-from-scratch.

    You have to work with the brain you have. You don’t have the option of a new, clean-slate brain transplant. So the past is there waiting for you to be more and more aware of it, understand it better, understand you better, learn, heal.




    Hi Brooklyn,

    It sounds like you are suffering in many ways and I’m sorry for your pain. Therapy can go a long way to help you understand and heal from your past. Seek a therapist who is NON judgmental and experienced with formative issues, inner critical voice issues, self esteem issues, attachment style and inner child healing. This will help you achieve a much better understanding of the triggers that keep you stuck and in pain.  A good therapist can help you heal from your past, take personal responsibility for your future (you have the power!), and give you a pathway to greater self love. Inner child healing may sound woowoo, but it is very powerful. In essence, if you see yourself as you were as a child, knowing what you know now and all you experienced, what would you do differently for that child? Truly imagine that beautiful, innocent child and in your heart and mind give her the love, kindness and understanding you deserved from your parents. You can never be abandoned if you are always there for you with love & support. All parents are imperfect, some far more than others, but they came by their disfunction honestly as we all do. Don’t let their personal struggles and poor parenting keep you stuck. You cannot change the past, but you can dramatically change the now and by doing so, create a new future.  It is never too late.

    Wishing you much self love and healing.

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