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Sharing memories

Compass307

New Here
How do folks share memories with their therapist? Are you talking them out? Joirnaling? Emailing? My issue is how sporadic and overwhelming my memories are. I don’t know what to do when they just kinda show up! As always, just looking for insight!
 
In the past when I've found saying it out loud particularly difficult, I have written the memory down and hand that to my T to read. That could be on paper, a note on your phone, or even a post here. It could even just be one word. To help steer the talking in a direction of the memory. Sometimes for the really hard memories I would hide my head in my sweater like a turtle because I was afraid to see their reaction. Whatever helps!

Or sometimes I might tell my T "I have something that I need to talk about, but I'm not sure how", which breaks the ice a little and let's my T know, at least generally, where I'm at. My T will then ask questions, which I tend to find easier to answer than just speaking about the memory entirely on my own.

Alternatively, getting it out suddenly in a sort of blurted word vomit could be another approach. If all of it isn't understandable, it's ok. They can always ask questions to clarify and help you to talk about it.

Other times my speaking becomes really slow, because things start to get foggy and it's like I have an internal wrestle between wanting to avoid the memory, and wanting to talk about it because I feel ready or feel like I need to. That's ok too. One word at a time.

For me, this is all in-session, because we don't usually have communication outside of appointments. I also think I'd find email sharing of difficult memories challenging, personally, because a big part of my anxiety around it is the anticipation of a 'negative' response from my T, and being able to have the real-time, in person feedback and validation after sharing in a session is a big help.

I hope that you can find a way to share what you need to with your T in a way that works for you. :)
 
Echo that journal or journals in most of my rooms to get it on paper. A quick email on the fly if something comes up. Then I prioritise and write out a list before the session of what we can get through. I've started breaking it into two sections, the feelings and responses so we can process with EMDR along with the memory or situation. Many years ago when I began T the thoughts and memories were like floods and cyclones. I thought it would never end. Do what you can with the time you have. Things start to settled very slowly. My mantra just keep going.
 
First off - It's the thing you learn -----"and then trauma" in your story, you don't have to talk directly about it to your T unless you can. They don't need all the gory or embarrassing information in detail. Just give what info you have to to paint the general picture. If detail is needed your T will ask.....

So talking to my T - is one part of therapy. There are other parts to - somatic, EMDR, etc. Usually talk therapy is sot of "stream of consciousness", because without fail - the things I am struggling with will become clear to my T. (not so much to me because after 45 years - its my everyday)

My journal here also plays a part. Because I may not remember things that bug me between sessions, and a quick review may jog my memory on things. (Partly because I work really hard on suppressing rumination so I can just sort suppress things until I forget they were bugging me)
 
Well said! I found that to be the case as well. It’s almost like saying the gory and embarrassing info out loud is more for you than them.
It sure as heck is. And there is no use torturing yourself with that stuff. By the time you get to where you might talk about that stuff - your perspective will have changed and you will want to talk about some of that....
 
The best way I’ve found to talk to T’s about difficult things is to flat out tell them “I don’t know how to talk about this, and could use some help in learning how to, managing the fallout, etc.”.

2 birds, 1 stone.

As it’s not only the thing I’m having difficulty with, but also the difficulty in and of itself.
 
The best way I’ve found to talk to T’s about difficult things is to flat out tell them “I don’t know how to talk about this, and could use some help in learning how to, managing the fallout, etc.”.

2 birds, 1 stone.

As it’s not only the thing I’m having difficulty with, but also the difficulty in and of itself.
Thank you so much! Very helpful insight
 
How do folks share memories with their therapist? Are you talking them out? Joirnaling? Emailing? My issue is how sporadic and overwhelming my memories are. I don’t know what to do when they just kinda show up! As always, just looking for insight!
I don't seem to be able to just turn up to session and talk about them...I have to email about them ... my old T made me read it out loud to him. For the really difficult stuff he read them out loud and then asked if he'd read it out correctly. My new T is online, and I basically email him then he brings it up in session. Though, as I've been discussing on my own post (or others suggested), this latter way (although easier) may not be the best way for processing
 
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