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Compulsion vs Acceptance & Approval

Discussion in 'General' started by willing, Apr 5, 2007.

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  1. willing

    willing Active Member

    An observation.

    In the last two weeks I have been doing some in depth therapy sessions as we are going back to visit the traumas. During this time I have felt extremely uncomfortable, vunerable and above all ashamed at my seemingly childish behavior. I have developed a strong need for my therapist that is probably too needy. I am afraid that something is going to happen to her and I am going to end up stuck in the emotion of this forever. The other thing is that I am doing things like crying and getting angry that make me very embarassed and self-centered. When I get self centered my bad voice comes to the forefront and says I am a pathetic piece of work. A whimp and a baby. And I am taking up others valuable time with my insignificant problem. I mean really there's a war on, tsnamis and rape and genocide, global warming, Who are you to complain. STOP! The vicious attack continues. So when I am here and I try to stop I am resorting to other methods or compulsions to get out of the pain and make it stop. Eating, smoking, extreme desire to drink and use again after 18 years of sobriety and more recently cutting (I can't believe I just actually wrote this). My therapist knows this. I try to stick with the least destructive which is eating but...well, the compulsion overcomes me. So, my therapist had me recognize really what it is I am feeling in trying to escape the pain and it is that I am scared that she won't accept or approve of me for what I am doing and thinking. Now I know I just took the long way to get to the point but it is a profound point for me. When I get scared I am afraid of abandonment because people won't approve of me.

    Major stuff for me.
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  3. batgirl

    batgirl I'm a VIP

    I think I know what you mean about the therapist Patty. I got overly attached to the psychiatrist I used to have (3 years ago), I guess it was transference for me. He was an older man and I wished he was my father. I used to worry incessantly about not seeing him anymore, him dying, etc. Actually I spent a LOT of time thinking about him, although I was quite embarrassed about it and never told anyone. When he retired it was really hard on me. It took me a couple of months to get over it.

    Crying and getting angry is pretty normal for PTSD. At least for me. How you deal with it is the important thing. Please don't cut! I'm shitty at giving advice but try to find something to do that's not harmful to yourself. I mostly draw, paint, and write in my journal now, rather than tearing up my room, throwing things and being abusive to my family. And I've started doing exercise, as energy permits.

    There's always going to be wars and crap going on, but you are important too. I really doubt you'll be abandoned by your therapist for being honest. But I understand the feeling, totally. Take care.
  4. Marlene

    Marlene I'm a VIP Premium Member

    Agreeing with Evie...there's always going to be 'something somewhere' happening. To put off or give up or therapy because something bad happened somewhere is really just an excuse not to go forward. You're worth the time and the effort. Right now a little selfishness is necessary for you to start and continue healing. Focusing on yourself isn't a bad thing...it's absolutely needed for you right now.

    I understand you fear of abandonment-been dealing with it for years...working on it/through it now for myself. You need to cry and get angry and let those emotions out that you've kept pushed down for so long. Don't be embarrassed. Hell, I've cried more in the last six months that I have in the last ten years. And I feel tons better for it because I'm bring all that old crap up, dealing with it, putting it away and moving onto the next thing.

    When I first starting going to my therapist, I was scared that he would tell me that my traumas weren't bad enough for PTSD like my first therapist (even though she sent me for the evaluation that led to the PTSD diagnosis...go figure!) But after some time I feel comfortable enough now that we talk about things I've never talked about before. But one thing you need to remember...your therapist is not there to approve or accept you. She's there to teach you to approve and accept yourself. Therapists are guides, helpers, supporters...whatever word you want to use. But we have to do all of the hard work that it takes to heal. There's just no getting around it. All of the pills in the world and all of the hours 'on the couch' are meaningless if you're not willing to bust you butt working for your healing.
  5. moki

    moki Guest

    I understand completely. My therapist is a man, and that is a big deal to me. men are the ones I have trouble with, i so need one to really care and nurture me, so i've noticed myself thinking about him more often, and maybe expecting more out of him too. I have to keep very very aware of those feelings, and tell myself to keep my feelings in the real world, not my fantasy world. very hard sometimes.

    Your feelings and troubles are as important as anyone else's in this world. Every person on this earth deserves the same worth and dignity, and I guarantee you that you have the same worth and dignity and reasons to mourn and be afraid as any other individual on this great big planet.

    Abandonment is a biggie, no doubt. Remember that everytime you tell your therapist something, no matter what it is, you can applaud yourself for being honest and open when every cell in your body is telling you to hide. I don't have the abandonment issue even close to being resolved for me, but I do know that therapy is for the brave, the courageous, and ultimately the enlightened. It is the hardest thing I have ever done.
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