What am I doing wrong? Any success stories with humanistic, person centred psychotherapy?

Lostvoice

Learning
I have been in therapy for approximately 2 years now for CPTSD, it is humanistic, person centred psychotherapy.

There has been some slow progress, but I’m constantly made to feel guilty for asking too much of her.

Yesterday she told me that she feels she is using so much psychological energy on me for nothing! And that when I’m in this state of mind I am very wearing on her.

I am trying my best, but maybe this isn’t the best method for treating cptsd?
Does anyone have success stories with this kind of therapy?

Thank you in advance!
 

Friday

Moderator
Any therapy is only as good as the therapist using it.

Ditto @whiteraven … That’s a bizarre statement for a therapist to use.

Humanistic Psychology is one of the major schools of thought, (Maslow, of the famous hierarchy of needs, and Carl Rogers, whose Rogerian psychotherapy has become cannon in client centered therapy across many modalities are just 2 of a seriously hotshot list who developed this school)… means that practitioners of it can specialize in anything from Autism to Xenophobia. Or not have progressed in their education and training into a specialty, yet.

Does this therapist specialize in Trauma & PTSD?
 
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Lostvoice

Learning
@whiteraven

I’m not entirely sure how to describe it, I see her for 2 hours twice a week every week. She lets me lead the sessions as the whats been most present for me and is working with me on how i respond to things and people in the here and now.
It’s not very structured. And there is often tension.

@Friday i think they are trauma informed and have done independent studies in trauma but she is not a specialist
 

whiteraven

MyPTSD Pro
@whiteraven

I’m not entirely sure how to describe it, I see her for 2 hours twice a week every week. She lets me lead the sessions as the whats been most present for me and is working with me on how i respond to things and people in the here and now.
It’s not very structured. And there is often tension.
That's kind of how my therapist works. I don't find it very helpful at this point--I mean, we deal with things that come up, but we don't really delve into them at any deep level.

Can you talk to her about moving to a more structured therapy or even to another therapist that has a stronger approach to trauma? Have you talked to her about all of this?
 

Lostvoice

Learning
@whiteraven

Yes, many times we have discussed what is and isn’t working but it’s like we just go in circles rather than forward sometimes.

The difficulty is in that we have a dual relationship and I’m feeling guilty all the time for impacting on her life.
I developed an unhealthy dependency.

I am afraid that if I tell her I don’t want to work with her professionally that I’ll lose her as a friend too.
 

whiteraven

MyPTSD Pro
Yes, many times we have discussed what is and isn’t working but it’s like we just go in circles rather than forward sometimes.
Yeah, I have been in the same position. Do you have other (non-professional) support--family? friends?
The difficulty is in that we have a dual relationship and I’m feeling guilty all the time for impacting on her life.
I developed an unhealthy dependency.
Ok, so this is where you really need to start rethinking this relationship. She is a *therapist* and should be trained to manage her side of things. It's not up to you--the client--to worry about how you're impacting her.
I am afraid that if I tell her I don’t want to work with her professionally that I’ll lose her as a friend too.
If she is acting like a friend, she is being completely unethical, and I wouldn't trust her to do her JOB as your therapist. Therapists are NOT friends.
The fact that she is allowing dual roles means she's ethically shitty and not a good therapist OR a good friend. Run away. Run. Don't walk.
Yes, this!!!
 

Sideways

Moderator
I am afraid that if I tell her I don’t want to work with her professionally that I’ll lose her as a friend too.
There's alternatives. For example:

(1) asking for referrals to a structured therapy program, like a CBT or DBT. They definitely have their place, and if you haven't already done one, it may be worth a try;

(2) scaling back the appointments, for example to fortnightly or monthly. This gives a lot more space for that emotional space between appointments, so that one stressful appointment doesn't land squarely on top of the last one and so on.

(3) asking for alternative therapy ideas. Did you end up trying EMDR? Have you thought about alternatives like an art therapy program, equine therapy or music therapy?
 

EveHarrington

MyPTSD Pro
Yeah but no.

If your therapist is your friend she needs to lose her license. What she’s doing is 100% unethical. I don’t know if you are in the USA but she can lose her job for doing this.

There is a lack of boundaries here and boundaries are crucial for healing trauma IMO.

This woman is failing at her most basic professional responsibilities and chances are she’s making your healing more difficult and prolonged.

There are other stories here of people who had therapists who were their friends. One of those threads was very long and seeing how the issue went in for years, I don’t know if the client was ever able to break free. (I’m not always here, so I don’t know if she got any resolution. Others likely know the post I’m thinking of here.)
 

OliveJewel

MyPTSD Pro
I think your issue has nothing to do with humanistic, person-centered therapy and everything to do with the dual relationship. If your friendship depends on you being her client that’s not a friendship. There are lots of success stories with Rogerian therapy. Ask how many success stories there are with dual relationships. Do a search for “therapist is my best friend”. I agree with the others—your therapist hurt you and getting away would be priority number one if I were in that situation. I’m sorry they did that to you.
 
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