Well, we didn't start EMDR tonight because we won't be able to meet again this week, and she wants to start it when we can meet the next day. So we'll start it Monday and we have another appointment on Tuesday, and the option to meet Wednesday if need be.
We went through some of the initial groundwork today, though. We had tried it before - listing like the 3 most disturbing parts of the incident, and for each, saying the negative self thought that comes with it, then if I could change that self thought, what would it be changed to, and then, on a scale of 1-10, how true I thought that new thought was, and then, on a scale of 1-10, how intense were my feelings about it right then. When we went through it before, I couldn't really answer any of it. But today I had a much easier time. But as soon as I started thinking about the first specific thing, my face got all hot and my chest got all tight and I felt like I might cry. When Linda asked me to rate the intensity of my feelings, it was an 8. She was surprised it was that high, and so was I - I've never said above a 6 when she's asked me stuff like that before. I told her that I think it's just because we haven't talked about specifics in a while. But it dawned on me on my way home - I don't think we have actually discussed any specifics about what happened since my whole "breakthrough" with Dr. M, when I started seeing this as more real. I think that's why it had such an effect on me.
We also talked about my parents, like what you and I discussed today. We talked about their reactions when they found out what happened. She said the same things you did: (1) that it would have taken the focus of them and their needs; and (2) they wouldn't be able to handle my emotions over it. Wow. You two think alike!
She also said that I might want to write a letter to them, like you said - except that she asked if maybe I would want to send it to them. She said that maybe I should write them a short note saying that I don't understand why they reacted the way they did, and maybe a paragraph with a short summary of what happened. Her point was that they don't know what happened, and maybe they thought it was a date rape and maybe I should explain that it was really violent and maybe they would react differently. I said no, because (1) it shouldn't matter. They shouldn't be concerned or empathetic - or parental - only if there is physical violence. Isn't rape enough? (2) I don't want them to react differently. It's too late. I don't have that kind of relationship with them. It would just be awkward. And I don't want them to know anything about it; and (3) although nothing they can do could help me at this point, it could certainly hurt me. They are likely to react as usual - to say or imply that they can't believe I'm still dwelling on what happened after all this time. And they very well could react somewhat indifferently again, which could still hurt me. Linda said it was just an off-the-cuff reaction by her.
She asked whether my sister had any empathy at all, and I said that yes, she did. She thought maybe I should tell her. I said no - she can't keep her mouth shut, and I don't trust her. I know her. She will tell my parents. I explained that it would not be in an attempt to suck up to or inform them, but would rather be in the context of telling my parents they didn't handle things right. Linda thinks that would be good. I do not. Linda said she just wants someone in my family to do the right thing, although she realizes why neither of these ideas may be something I would want to do. I told her about your idea of writing a letter I don't intend to send.
I felt like she almost wanted me to let my parents know (either directly or through my sister) more of what happened, because Linda thinks it was so severe and violent, and she thinks it would teach them a lesson for not taking it very seriously. But I don't think it would have that effect, and it cannot help me at all - it could only hurt. She said she just can't fathom that people who function so well and are successful and educated and seemingly nice in a lot of ways can be so emotionally harmful. She said she can't imagine leaving one of her daughters to fend for herself in so many ways.
I also talked to her about the other issue. I told her that I thought my being drawn to older women as close friends was because of how my mother was - or wasn't. She obviously agreed and said that P and others seem to provide the nurturing that I need and want. I told her that I was sure that her age (although she is a few years younger than my mom) was one of the reasons I felt comfortable with her. She agreed. I asked her if that made her feel uncomfortable, and she said no, it was fine. She said we're all just human, and she thought it was good that I liked being nurtured and "mothered" and there was nothing wrong with that. She said as long as I wasn't hurting or being dishonest with P or whoever, and as long as that is her/their nature, there is nothing wrong with being nurtured by P or other older friends. She said she didn't feel like it was hurting me, and may be helping me. She said she likes being around me, is glad to be able to help me, and is not phased at all. She said she is sorry I didn't get that when I was younger and she would have wanted that for me. So you were right. It was no big deal. But I did feel like I needed to let her know my thoughts now, since it is worrying me that she would bolt.
She told me I was a "really good kid," and before I left, she told me, "you know how you told me you always felt different growing up?" I said yes, and she said "You probably were differnet, but need to realize that you were the normal one." So that made me feel good.
Over all, I am feeling very optimistic about things right now, although after my reaction talking to Linda tonight about some details, I have a feeling that the EMDR is going to be kind of rough. But I also understand that it works wonders for a lot of people, so I think it is definitely worth a try, and I think I might be ready now.
I wrote the letter to my parents tonight, although it ended up being almost totally directed to my mom. I was able to get a lot out, but my anger kind of scared me. It seems kind of odd to me to go from thinking my parents were totally normal and great only several months ago, to have developed so much anger. But I think a lot of that might be feelings I already had - a long time ago --- but convinced myself were wrong or invalid, and now they have resurfaced. ??? Anyway, the whole exercise was pretty energy-depleting, but I felt I got some anger out and identified some feelings. But it also kind of "disturbed the water" some, and along with how I felt so strongly about the one part of what happened that Linda and I touched on today, I am feeling a lot right now, and it doesn't feel very good. But it IS good, right?? Do you want to hear what I wrote?
I'm going to try to go to bed now. I, too, hope that things will be explained a little better to me when they call from the sleep center. I only understood about 1 paragraph out of 8 pages. And Dr. M will hopefully know what she wants to do about the medication options.
Good night. Here's to no nightmares tonight! :)