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How To Manage Intense Painful Emotions Between Therapy Sessions?

Discussion in 'Therapy' started by Awakening, Sep 13, 2011.

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  1. Awakening

    Awakening Well-Known Member

    Do you call your therapist?

    Or do you try & muddle through?

    Mostly I try to muddle through, then by the time the next session comes around "I'm fine", in fact often I genuinely forget about the emotions or indeed most of the week prior if I've been extremely stressed. All I remember is that it was 'hard & painful' but I can't elaborate further so I don't get the help I need.

    Sometimes I email the therapist, but when she brings up what I've written, I know I've written it, but the words mean nothing to me. Someone else could have written.

    She's tried art therapy with me but it doesn't really gel with the cynic in me.

    So now I'm in intense painful feelings and don't know what to do.
    olaja likes this.
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  3. KK3966

    KK3966 Member

    They have ppl you can talk to on the phone inbetween appts?
  4. Awakening

    Awakening Well-Known Member

    I can ring my therapist directly as in I have her mobile number but I've rarely done it and when I have it's not been successful. I mainly email or text her - to which she won't respond, she will wait to the next session to discuss. Phone calls she will generally respond to but it varies between 24 hours - 4 days.
  5. The Albatross

    The Albatross Product of decisions rather than circumstances
    Premium Member

    I use "stop thought", distraction, or redirection. If it persists I write about it then go do some self care. But I try not so much to out run the emotions... more like trying to take charge of my thoughts and saying, "Okay I hear you, I acknowledge you, but I am doing this now.", and try to push it out of my mind so that new thoughts can come in.
    BloomInWinter likes this.
  6. sandy

    sandy Member

    My T wants me to phone her. She has always said we are in this together and that I should contact her as often as I feel necessary. She doesn't like it when I "white knuckle" it alone. She would rather talk me down over the phone than take the first half of the next session "grounding" me so that we can deal with what is happening in my life.She has been consistent in returning the call within the same day. I like knowing I can call however I feel intrusive and like a nuisance, so I don't always call. I still think I can handle things on my own, after all I've been doing all my life, right? :rolleyes:
    Junebug likes this.
  7. LizBeth1

    LizBeth1 Active Member

    Hi Awakening. Tell your T about this next time you see her. She should give you tools and strategies to use in between sessions for when this happens -- having tough feelings come up in-between is inevitable, and learning to manage it is the biggest part of the learning... she should get you started on this.
  8. anthony

    anthony Master of none!

    Sounds all perfectly normal... and yes, you just cope and muddle through until the next session. If you didn't have these reactions between sessions, I would tell you that you need a new therapist, because you should have fallout after therapy with PTSD if therapy is done right.
  9. SimplyComplex

    SimplyComplex Well-Known Member
    Premium Member

    Wow that is good to know! I thought I was a drama queen and kind of pathetic
    intothelight, Junebug and doglover like this.
  10. Roline

    Roline Active Member

    Sandy, you are so lucky to have the full support of your T, and to have the ok to contact her when you are struggling.
    I have asked mine, but as I'm seeing her privately away from the hospital setting, she doesnt get back to you. So much so the GP refurred me back to the crisis team this week as I have found the emotions and thoughts so distressing. But, ... I have joined this forum and have finally admitted the Abuse this week, so maybe things are starting to shift, but it's just sooo ****** painful!

    Anthony, It's also good to know, and reassuring, that it is 'normal' to have these reactions between sessions. I thought it was just me doing it wrong again
  11. kimba

    kimba Well-Known Member
    Premium Member

    My T doesn't mind me calling which I do on occasion. She won't return the call unless I specifically say I need her to and then she will ASAP. I am going twice a week right now and feeling a little overwhelmed by it all so it is probably a good thing. I also don't want to burden anyone else but when I feel like I can't handle it, I will.
    anthony likes this.
  12. anthony

    anthony Master of none!

    That's the key Kimba... therapists have other clients, they have their own life, they also have a duty of care to their clients. The problem is, if you have a client who becomes dependent upon you and starts ringing you multiple times a day / week, then that is a bad thing. If you have clients who only use such offers when absolutely necessary, then any good therapist should get back to you. If you abuse it... then I would expect they don't get back to you, because from their professional viewpoint, you are building a dependence upon them which is a negative quality for therapy.

    So well done... and good to hear therapists who do get back to patients after making such offers. I think they shouldn't make the offer if they don't mean it.
    KP the nut likes this.
  13. KP the nut

    KP the nut Tigger is back!!!!!
    Premium Member

    Mine always warned me about the fallout between sessions. He also said I could call him and discuss it. Sometime I did, if I felt badly impacted by the fallout. One occassion was nightmares and a common theme - that actually led to a big breakthrough.

    However for the most part I muddled through. I would make a note, acknowledge it and try and put it in my imaginary container. Those were the times the forum was amazing, such support, friendship and imformation.

    This is not a journey we have to do alone.
    Roline likes this.
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