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Anybody Desperately Want To Tell About Trauma But Can't Unless Asked

Discussion in 'Treatment & Therapy' started by infoonptsd, Dec 1, 2015.

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  1. infoonptsd

    infoonptsd New Member

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    I hope this is not completely crazy, but I have read so many posts about the horrible thoughts about having to disclose trauma details to your t. I am dealing with almost the opposite.

    I have several 'issues' that I am aware of from an emotionally/verbally abusive step-father to an adult that I trusted in HighSchool as a maternal figure that later showed she had other ideas for the relationship... and then what is daily becoming more of a certainty that I have repressed very early abuse (I have always had terrors but am not hearing his and my voice in my head and it isn't pleasant exchange of words)... I have NEVER told details of ANY of this stuff. I have mentioned to two people that "something" happened with this person I trusted and that was the extent. I am plagued by images, short video in my mind of the ones I remember and now these voices of what I suspect.

    I am working with a t and have found that I can not tell him ANYTHING if he doesn't ask directly. I have told him this and he is good at trying to ask me questions. The problem is, I also can not tell him what to ask. I know it may sound completely crazy, but it is like I am not allowed to just freely tell things but I am allowed to answer honestly. He has gone back and forth about 'processing' trauma and then I think I am so quiet about things going on that he doesn't think they are and starts to think we need to go another direction. I get so upset when I hear him talk about not addressing the trauma specifically and get very depressed and want to give up hope about ever getting relief. It is like I KNOW I have to get these details out but I can't tell him that. I think he is also worried I can't handle dealing with the trauma directly because of my panic attacks, but I don't know how to change any of this. He talks about trying to do it with as little detail and trauma as possible and I have read about all these new methods to deal with PTSD without detailed processing, but I want it so bad.

    Does this make sense to ANYONE? I know I would be HIGHLY embaressed to say the things I would have to and I hope it isn't something sick making me want to... but I am so worried we will spend years tiptoeing around the details because he thinks I am scared and I am desperately wanting to spill the beans. I wish I could tell him this, but it isn't allowed.
     
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  3. scout86

    scout86 I'm a VIP Premium Member Donated

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    Yes, it totally makes sense. Or, rather, it's totally familiar. It doesn't, actually "make sense". I also haven't figured out what to do about it (yet). Practice? I'd say, mostly, "give it time".
    You don't HAVE to know how, HE does. That's his job. But, worrying about that is pretty common too. (Check out the "similar threads" listed at the bottom of this one.)

    How about writing instead of talking?
     
    digger, DogwoodTree, shimmerz and 3 others like this.
  4. infoonptsd

    infoonptsd New Member

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    Thanks Scout86, glad to hear I am not completely alone in my craziness.

    I hate that I feel like I am deceiving him part of the time because I know the information in my head would make his job easier, but it is just like I am not allowed to say. My greatest desire isn't large sums of money(although that would be nice) it would be for someone caring (t is the only support system I have, so I guess I am saying him) would symbolically hold me down and force me to say all these 'secrets' in my head. I think just getting it out might do load for me. It is freaky to know the content that needs to come out is not of a nature that I want to discuss, but the desire to get it out almost over rides that.

    Thanks for helping me know I am not some kind of creep for having a desire to talk about this kind of stuff. I am almost an old lady and guess I have hid it so long, I just want relief or company.. I don't know.
     
    scout86 and C j like this.
  5. scout86

    scout86 I'm a VIP Premium Member Donated

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    Well, you've come to the right place for company!

    My T & I have talked about talking about stuff a few times. About a year ago, some stuff had happened. He knew this was an issue. After a bit of dust settled I told him I was ready to talk about it. He looked at me for a second, smiled (kindly) and said "I think...not." and totally changed the subject to something like "so how are your dogs doing?" The point being, you need to lay a good foundation. He told me that rushing in to stuff, or BEING rushed, can re-traumatize someone and do more harm than good. He likes to say "As fast as you can, but not faster."
     
  6. Zef

    Zef Well-Known Member Premium Member

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    Just wanted to say you're not the only person dealing with this. I seem to need some sort of permission. . .like t specifically asking. . .before I can get my mouth to work. . .sometimes permission isn't even enough.
     
    Brokensoul88, infoonptsd and scout86 like this.
  7. WillyKat

    WillyKat I'm a VIP Premium Member

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    What you've said makes perfect sense to me. So no, you're not completely crazy. Unless of course we all are and since we are speaking on an online forum about PTSD, that's a distinct possibility.

    We have a lot of blocks to what we've experienced. One of them is that no one wants to hear about our story. So we sort of wait and hope someone comes along and drags it out of us. But no one does until we find a shrink that understands us.

    What really matters is that your story is coming out. The exact process I don't think matters very much. Working in therapy, you can start processing the material, which integrates it into your normal memory, which helps defuse all the content that lives in your active memory and causes so much fear and stress.
     
  8. infoonptsd

    infoonptsd New Member

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    Scout86,, that is TOOO hilarious... My t just said today "as fast as you can, but as slow as you need to".... LOL

    Zef, thanks... I can relate. He does ask some things and I notice I STILL only give tiny bits even though he opened the door. Its like I need him to say..... "no, no... there's more then that... Tell me the rest" I know I would do it if he said it as a directive like that. Obviously this is NOT something I am telling him to do nor would he even know what or when there IS more. Horrible how I set him up.. sigh

    WillyKat... I reserve the determination on 'crazy'. Without PTSD, I think I fit that group.. LOL. I like the way you say "drag in out".. that is exactly how it feels. I hate hearing people talk about "I have to be able to do it myself".. I understand the thought behind that, but I know if I what on myself, which I might have to do... I will throw myself under the bus and just suffer before I can through it out there. In the beginning, my t would say "you know best" and I finally told him that was absolutely NOT true and my past proves it. He has finally stopped saying that!
     
    WillyKat, C j and scout86 like this.
  9. dnp

    dnp Active Member

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    For the first couple of years I could only write things down, I couldn't say anything. Do you think this would work for you?
     
    C j likes this.
  10. infoonptsd

    infoonptsd New Member

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    Mine isn't about the talking itself. I can carry on any conversation and even answer his questions when they are hard (as long as it doesn't have to do with him because I am afraid to say something that could be hurtful in regards to issues between him and I at this point). Otherwise, I will ANSWER anything, I just can't volunteer the information. He has to asks me for it and sometimes I make myself hold back some because it might not be exactly what he asked for if I add to much. I think part of it is in feeling like I am attention seeking if I say to much. Not for sure on everything, but I think for me, writing would even be worse because it would be like I was preplan for attention. I might have a bit of a problem and need some therapy ;)
     
    scout86 likes this.
  11. joeylittle

    joeylittle ˁ˚ᴥ˚ˀ All howl, no bite Administrator Generous $250+

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    @infoonptsd - I have this challenge too. On really bad days I tell my therapist he needs to ask questions, and then I make sure and give him feedback so he knows what was especially helpful (or not).

    Something he does that works well for me, is when I get quiet he will ask me what I'm sitting with, or thinking about. I just have to be willing to answer. But it keeps him from needing to suggest that there might be more or less to something - which I do think is important, at least in trauma disclosure. The therapist - if they are good - will not want to subliminally be prompting you to have thoughts or feelings you might not have, you know?
     
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  12. infoonptsd

    infoonptsd New Member

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    Yes, I have noticed he tries to really watch what he says to prevent 'prompting' since some of my issues have been blocked and I only have bits of some stuff. He is really good at what he does, I just hate being such a pain when he's trying so hard to help.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 6, 2015
    joeylittle and scout86 like this.
  13. watundah

    watundah I'm a VIP

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    Yes. Always. She drives the bus and asks tons of questions and I try to respond as verbosely as possible. I withdrew as a child and talking was not easy and spewing my guts is not my norm. Unless I am jazzed up because something big happened in the week between sessions, then I can chatter. But when it's time to get the shovel out and dig deep, help! I used to feel bad and she used to urge me to take more ownership but realized that we really need to work on this together. I do send off email when I have an epiphany right after session because the intensity often dissipates over time and then I blow it off and never bring it up.

    I have found a lot of comfort from this board, learning that this openness is a big challenge for quite a few of us. We were encouraged to hide our feelings, or shamed for them, and so on. Bottom line, there are no rules. Do whatever works best for you, your therapist is there to help and it's not our job to please them (how often do we forget that?). Be kind and patient with your self. You're doing great.
     
    scout86, barefoot and C j like this.
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