Therapy or Self care?

comfort zone

New Here
dear trauma community, I would like to check in about what I experience as trauma addiction, again. two days ago I was bitten by a dog and this really shook me up and I lost my temper, got really angry, and felt ashamed. Today, I went to CVS to see if I could return some dental floss. I was able to do it but it was stressful and increased my stress. Then a little bit later I thought I might like to plan to go away for the weekend, Labor Day. I started inquiring about a particular event that was last minute and unlikely to work out easily. This was overstimulating also.

When I worked with a therapist that was skilled with helping me with trauma she would coach me. She talked about laying low when my trauma is activated and I am in a hyper arousal state. She talked about avoiding any high risk situations. I found this very helpful I think I spent fewer hours and days, in a state of High stress, when I had her help with this.

I am interested in not harming myself and adding to my own suffering. I don't have a therapist right now and I'm looking for one. Can I take care of myself without a therapist’s help until I find one? Maybe reaching out for help here would be good.
 

shimmerz

MyPTSD Pro
It is training yourself to see signs so that you can catch something prior to it becoming a 'thing' (aka crisis).

I used to drop things. Usually in the kitchen. I had no idea why. I just thought I was being an idiot. Turns out this was a warning sign that my body was reacting to something. Turns out it was a consistent pattern. So I taught myself to get out of the kitchen and sit down or distract myself in some way. It also helped me to see that maybe I needed to incorporate some 'wellness tools' so that I was letting go of stress regularly. Wellness Recovery Education really just shows those who want to see it, how we are responding in the moment. This allows us to have more control. It is a system that I have seen and experienced as working very well.

This is an online presentation of a Wellness Recovery Education session. It may be helpful to you. I expect it is alright to copy the link here (?) due to the fact that it is posted publicly.

 

arfie

MyPTSD Pro
i think of "self-care" as something entirely different from "self-therapy." self care is a vital part of my therapy. self-therapy is fuel to quote the adage that a doctor who has themselves for a patient has a fool for a doctor.

but "therapy" covers quite a bit of ground and not all of my own therapy is from paid professionals. for starters, pros are not always available for quite a variety of reasons. peer support has provided my most reliable therapy network since my very first pro put me into his group therapy and encouraged us all to think of him as a high dollar reference book that never leaves the library -- to look to one another for the support and insight to heal.

I don't have a therapist right now and I'm looking for one. Can I take care of myself without a therapist’s help until I find one? Maybe reaching out for help here would be good.

yes, maybe reaching out here while you look for a therapist can be good. for my own therapy nickel, pros and peers are the best med cocktail in the pharmacy.
 

coraxxx

Sponsor
I found Dialectical Behavioural Therapy and grounding exercises very good while awaiting and finding a good T. It doesn't do everything and doesn't replace being with people but it does bring a certain insight within yourself and helps to identify signs you're getting unhinged. Journaling also does. I can notice the thought patterns better when I'm writing and certain things I know are signs it's not doing too good and I should just pace down and try to keep quiet.

Something DBT does well is the whole part about identifying feelings by their external manifestations. I tend not to notice I'm getting angry or afraid so giving myself a physical self assessment (are my eyebrows frowned, am I sweating, am I trembling, is my chest compressed... These signs appear before I snap so it's useful to keep track of them). It gives some time to see it coming and progressively identifying what triggers them too. Then the grounding part is more about finding ways to redirect yourself in something neutral around you and try not to spin into trigger mode.

I don't think therapy and self care do oppose at all, good self care and better coping skills are important within or without therapy
 

comfort zone

New Here
It is training yourself to see signs so that you can catch something prior to it becoming a 'thing' (aka crisis).

I used to drop things. Usually in the kitchen. I had no idea why. I just thought I was being an idiot. Turns out this was a warning sign that my body was reacting to something. Turns out it was a consistent pattern. So I taught myself to get out of the kitchen and sit down or distract myself in some way. It also helped me to see that maybe I needed to incorporate some 'wellness tools' so that I was letting go of stress regularly. Wellness Recovery Education really just shows those who want to see it, how we are responding in the moment. This allows us to have more control. It is a system that I have seen and experienced as working very well.

This is an online presentation of a Wellness Recovery Education session. It may be helpful to you. I expect it is alright to copy the link here (?) due to the fact that it is posted publicly.

Thank you shimmerz, I feel moved by your response and feel some connection with this community. I read and contemplated what you shared, and the WRAP slides. Some parts were uplifting and supportive. This woke me up from a trance, I guess. I also am reminded of ways I know how to support myself.

i think of "self-care" as something entirely different from "self-therapy." self care is a vital part of my therapy. self-therapy is fuel to quote the adage that a doctor who has themselves for a patient has a fool for a doctor.

but "therapy" covers quite a bit of ground and not all of my own therapy is from paid professionals. for starters, pros are not always available for quite a variety of reasons. peer support has provided my most reliable therapy network since my very first pro put me into his group therapy and encouraged us all to think of him as a high dollar reference book that never leaves the library -- to look to one another for the support and insight to heal.



yes, maybe reaching out here while you look for a therapist can be good. for my own therapy nickel, pros and peers are the best med cocktail in the pharmacy.
Hello Arfie,

This is so true. I have not been reaching out moderately. I isolated.

This week I did call for free peer counseling in my city, found additional warm line resources that are available more hours, reached out here, and made 3 calls. I'm happy to receive your msg and I appreciate feeling connection, thank you.

I found Dialectical Behavioural Therapy and grounding exercises very good while awaiting and finding a good T. It doesn't do everything and doesn't replace being with people but it does bring a certain insight within yourself and helps to identify signs you're getting unhinged. Journaling also does. I can notice the thought patterns better when I'm writing and certain things I know are signs it's not doing too good and I should just pace down and try to keep quiet.

Something DBT does well is the whole part about identifying feelings by their external manifestations. I tend not to notice I'm getting angry or afraid so giving myself a physical self assessment (are my eyebrows frowned, am I sweating, am I trembling, is my chest compressed... These signs appear before I snap so it's useful to keep track of them). It gives some time to see it coming and progressively identifying what triggers them too. Then the grounding part is more about finding ways to redirect yourself in something neutral around you and try not to spin into trigger mode.

I don't think therapy and self care do oppose at all, good self care and better coping skills are important within or without therapy
Reading your post is helping me feel grounded. I can relate to what you said, " ...Journaling also does. I can notice the thought patterns better when I'm writing and certain things I know are signs it's not doing too good and I should just pace down and try to keep quiet."

For me, I sometimes have awareness that I feel over stimulated. I sometimes have willingness to quiet down. For example sometimes at bedtime, I'm willing to go to bed, and be present with how I'm feeling. I think this is one way that I am able to parent myself and feel compassion for myself.

Also, thank you for talking about DBT.
 
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