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Stuck - Do you ever feel like you're no good at the therapy thing?

LucyLou

Confident
Do you ever feel like you're no good at the therapy thing? I can't always put things in to words or even say how I'm feeling....this has nothing to do with my therapist, she's really lovely. Today we spoke about what I wrote on here about watching something happening to myself and although I didn't go into details about it but did say it was to do with my ex, she said the same as you lot about dissociation. I just really find it hard to explain how I feel or why....She equates it to getting to the top of a diving board, getting to the edge and then stopping. She knows I do better with writing, so she wants me to write down my thoughts/feelings of why I'm finding it so hard to talk about things and how that's leaving me feeling like it's all me, I'm the one keeping myself stuck. She said shame but I think there's much more to it than that. I said how I think it's going slowly and she said I'm doing well, but I guess she has to say that....if she wants me to carry and keep paying her (maybe be me being a bit cynical there) I don't know. I feel like i go off track and babble on about different things too, that maybe aren't even relevent. She says I'm gutsy, that I won't just go along and agree with her, if it doesn't feel right and I guess she's right. She mentioned drawing but I said I can't draw and she just said how I could draw stick men/mark make with colour
 
good at the therapy thing? ? ?
from a patient perspective, i hold that as being good at recovering from car wrecks and social injustices. may i never have enough practice to achieve proficiency. i don't see it as a thing i ever WANT to be good at. i'm just doing what i gotta do with amateur hopes that healing can happen here.
 
I think therapy is supposed to be messy. If you get "good at it" then IMO you're going through the motions but probly don't need therapy anymore. If therapy is real, genuine, authentic, then I think it's sort of like the process of giving birth to yourself... And the process of giving birth is messy, raw, real, unpredictable, confusing and very alive. I understand that it feels uncomfortable tho... but yeah, I think that's the hallmark of therapy working. You know that game kids play blindfolded where they're looking for something and the other kids shout "warm" or "cold" depending on if they're getting closer or not? I think in therapy, if things are messy and uncomfortable, that's the equivalent of everyone yelling "warm, warm - you're getting warm!"

Therapists have plenty of patients who come and see them, week after week and NEVER have the courage to go near the messy, confusing stuff. They just talk about any minor frustrations they had that week and keep things simple and easy and steer totally clear of their actual issues. If I was a therapist, I'd find those patients soooooo frustrating.
 
Sounds like you are good at it! It's just a frustrating, irritating, slow, hard process!

My T says it's like turning the tap on a little bit at a time. So you're broaching the subject. And that's your window of tolerance. There is a reason you stop at the top of the diving board. Safety first.

And it makes sense that you struggle with knowing how you feel or expressing yourself. As safety first back then required suppressing all of that and disassociating from yourself. So it's a long slow hard process to reconnect with it all.
 
I found out recently that what I thought was stuck, was getting ready to handle what came out recently. Two years working on what I thought wasn't a trauma thing and suddenly boom. There it is, trauma 1B, when all I had ever done was wonder is there might be something there.

I'm working with a new T and being as open as I was with my original T has been difficult in some ways still....I was hugely frustrated a few weeks ago - about as frustrated as I have been since starting therapy.

But really - all the work everyone did was doing its thing, you just can't see it working.......
 
Do you ever feel like you're no good at the therapy thing? I can't always put things in to words or even say how I'm feeling....this has nothing to do with my therapist, she's really lovely. Today we spoke about what I wrote on here about watching something happening to myself and although I didn't go into details about it but did say it was to do with my ex, she said the same as you lot about dissociation. I just really find it hard to explain how I feel or why....She equates it to getting to the top of a diving board, getting to the edge and then stopping. She knows I do better with writing, so she wants me to write down my thoughts/feelings of why I'm finding it so hard to talk about things and how that's leaving me feeling like it's all me, I'm the one keeping myself stuck. She said shame but I think there's much more to it than that. I said how I think it's going slowly and she said I'm doing well, but I guess she has to say that....if she wants me to carry and keep paying her (maybe be me being a bit cynical there) I don't know. I feel like i go off track and babble on about different things too, that maybe aren't even relevent. She says I'm gutsy, that I won't just go along and agree with her, if it doesn't feel right and I guess she's right. She mentioned drawing but I said I can't draw and she just said how I could draw stick men/mark make with colour
I dropped out of therapy twice. I had a similar experience as you but I was given anti depressants and we never got too deeply into things. I could read most of it in books. I know some have great success. Truth be told I found no other way than acceptance of the past written out line by line. Writing what I fear and resent. Then, CBT work book. Learning skills, failing and trying again. Still have times of dysregulation and anger out of the blue But not anywhere as often and much time goes by and out of the blue I am triggered. It surprises me.However, this is my life. I can’t go back and fix it no matter how hard I try. Accept failures in emotions. Forgive yourself. You are not alone. Maybe there are other skilled professionals to walk along side of you. Lovely is not what I need. It is the hard truth… I have CPTSD and I have to learn and I get much out of the articles Andy has written on this forum. EMDR helped if administered by someone who knows what they are doing. Best to you on your journey. And it is a journey. It takes, at least for me perseverance, making amends when needed, love,acceptance and forgiveness. There is not always Justice in this journey.

I dropped out of therapy twice. I had a similar experience as you but I was given anti depressants and we never got too deeply into things. I could read most of it in books. I know some have great success. Truth be told I found no other way than acceptance of the past written out line by line. Writing what I fear and resent. Then, CBT work book. Learning skills, failing and trying again. Still have times of dysregulation and anger out of the blue But not anywhere as often and much time goes by and out of the blue I am triggered. It surprises me.However, this is my life. I can’t go back and fix it no matter how hard I try. Accept failures in emotions. Forgive yourself. You are not alone. Maybe there are other skilled professionals to walk along side of you. Lovely is not what I need. It is the hard truth… I have CPTSD and I have to learn and I get much out of the articles Andy has written on this forum. EMDR helped if administered by someone who knows what they are doing. Best to you on your journey. And it is a journey. It takes, at least for me perseverance, making amends when needed, love,acceptance and forgiveness. There is not always Justice in this journey.
Addendum. Sketching is a skill you can learn. I took two series of classes and I do well. Some is muscle memory as you progress. You will never regret taking a class. It truly is skill and anyone can learn. Youtube has video classes as well as Skillshare.
 
this may be appropriate to add here, maybe totally off topic but as I read this thread and thought about my own” skill” at getting the most out of therapy, I have to remember a theory about the effective use of the new psilocybin therapy that has been approved by the voters where i live. Early in the discussion about the efficacy of the therapy, there was a theory floated that the reason it worked was because patients have a near total lack of what was termed “ego” during the process, and therapists can use the open door thus created to ask deep, dark, dangerous questions with a measured hope that they are getting answers unaltered by a patients pride, the life long desires to put up a presentable front, the instinct to hide what might get them shunned by the tribe.
I thought about that alot when i heard it.
Aaron sorkin had Alan Arkin playing a therapist to Martin Sheen in an episode of The West Wing (US tv drama). “if you want to screw around here it doesn’t bother me, its your money, its about to become my money” was the line that I remember.
If I am not good at therapy, I think for me and speak of myself here, if I am not good at therapy it is because I am hiding what I need to get out, it is because I am filtering what i let out, it is because therapy is being stymied by my own ego and my willingness to “ screw around” when there is work to be done.
So, hows that working out for you? My therapist would ask.
I admit, I am guilty of making my therapists work hard at getting the deep roots up. And sometimes, it was hard because I made a decision a long time ago that those roots were permanently buried, and once pulled up and laid bare, they were just roots buriied a long time ago by a twelve year old kid. Nothing worth hiding with such zeal. How silly for the sixty year old man to waste his money protecting the ego of that twelve year old!
Anyway, thats what i think of when assesing my “skill” at good therapy.
 
oh god yes. I've told my t more times than I can count that I feel like I'm flunking!
Then she reminds me it's not a test.
It's trauma therapy
It's supposed to be confusing and you are supposed to have times where you can't figure out what you are doing right or wrong

The trick is to stick with it so you can learn how to manage what's making you feel like you are failing.
 
Addendum. Sketching is a skill you can learn. I took two series of classes and I do well. Some is muscle memory as you progress. You will never regret taking a class. It truly is skill and anyone can learn. Youtube has video classes as well as Skillshare.
Unless you’re dysgraphic. (Like dyslexia, but in reverse, it’s being unable to translate outbound information onto a 2D format, instead of 2D information piling on top of each other).

Or have certain types of TBIs, medical conditions (muscular, neurological, nervous system), or injuries (I haven’t been able to even write -with either hand- since I injured my back, much less anything requiring even better fine motor control… and I’m an artist), or, or, or.

😎 So I’d agree mooooooost people can learn how to draw. But like any skill? Nothing is something everyone can do.
 
Nothing is something everyone can do.
I think I could do nothing but never get the chance. I might be the exception- where do I sign up if there is a study being funded? Just my luck, I would probably be in the control group. Lucky get to do nothing peoples.
 
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