I have been thinking about you all morning, hoping that you are doing ok.
It's ok to be nervous. Linda will not reject your note. From what you have told me about her, I think it's impossible for her to do that! She wants to be there for you. And your note is very well written and does not contain anything that would make her want to blow it off.
It may help you to look at your fears instead of at Linda. What do you fear would happen if Linda did ignore your note? How would you feel? And what do your feelings mean about you?
I don't think Linda will ignore the note. But I think she might just say that she doesn't feel that way and I shouldn't worry about it. And that won't resolve anything. Part of me doesn't want to talk about it at all, or talk about anything with her, really. But if I continue to feel this way, I won't be able to keep going back to her, and I am guessing that we need to talk about it to try to resolve it. But I can see her just saying "that's ridiculous - I don't feel that way at all." and that's it. And if that happens, I know I'm not going to be able to say "wait, we need to discuss this." I don't imagine she understands ow intense these feelings were (and are, although a bit less).
But I'm also worried about if we do talk about it. I already feel like I might throw up.
So if she just blows off the note with a statement or 2, I will feel like I went today for nothing, and I will feel like I can't go back to her and I will continue to feel the way I do until it resolves itself. I will also feel like she misunderstands me, which will be bad, because I need someone who "gets" me - who even can pull out things when I don't say them or even if I don't know they are there. You do that more - just chatting online - than she does. That's okay, because I think she understands in different ways, but if that is gone (or if I feel like it is), I won't trust her.
Also - frankly, it will disappoint me because I spent my whole childhood having my feelings ignored, even he important or intense ones, and it would be just like that, I feel.
You ask what these feelings mean about me? I guess they mean that maybe I expect too much from Linda and that I am afraid she will react to my feelings the same way my parents did (even though it wouldn't be er intention), and then I will have to deal with the feelings on my own, and my first instinct is to avoid her.
I really don't know.
It's ok to push the issue some with Linda. This is something that is bothering you and should be addressed. Telling Linda how you feel may help her see that you need to talk this out. I would be truthful with her and tell her that you may not be able to come back if you don't have the chance to talk this out with her. Make sure you point out that this is not so much about how she feels about your attack, but about how you feel about yourself.
I understand that you feel very anxious about this. You are confronting a big fear of yours which is about rejection and your transference onto Linda of all the feelings about your attack. It's powerful and can feel overwhelming. But you are in control. You will not lose it. You may feel upset but that is all.
You can also tell Linda that you need insight into this issue and you want her help to get it. Every therapist understands that and they know that means some deeper work needs to take place.
You made a very good point- your feelings were ignored when you were a child and this fear you feel is comparable to that. You do not want to feel ignored again, because if you were, you would feel like you did when you were young and wanted your parents to care about how you felt. It's a good insight to have when you talk with Linda. You want her to give you what your parents would not, and if she does not, it will confirm what you feel about yourself, that your feelings are not valid or ok to have. And that will not feel good.
You are not expecting too much from Linda, you are just trying to get your needs met through therapy, which is completely normal. You and I have talked about how Linda is older and the fact that you pick older people in your life to substitute what you did not get from your mother and father. Linda is one of those substitutes so it's easy to see her in the place of your mother. Your desire to have Linda meet your needs is strong because if she does, you will not have to live with the thought that your feelings are wrong. You may not be able to control those feelings/transference, but being aware of them can help the impact of Linda's response to be less.
When do you see Linda today?
It's always good to be prepared!
That is ok to do. Let her guide you as to what to do. She will know how to handle this.
Let me know how it goes. I'll be thinking of you.
Wow, Shay, that is a lot! I'm glad it worked out better than you expected. I think the letter you wrote helped a lot. It gave Linda a chance to see what you felt. Telling her to read it through without stopping was a good idea too.
I thought that she might be open to not doing the EMDR again. Your reaction says that the EMDR brings out too many of your memories and feelings for you to cope with at one time. When you think of it, you just started getting in touch with your feelings a short time ago. Although you have made huge gains since then, you are in the middle of dealing with the worst of your situation. Bringing out more of those memories and feelings before you have a chance to develop coping mechanisms is traumatic. It's better to wait till you feel ready or to let it go altogether. Like I mentioned, the studies so far on EMDR show that it is no more effective than traditional therapy. Until it's proven otherwise that EMDR is better than therapy, it's good to stick to what is known to work.
Since Linda is new to EMDR, she might not have been prepared for your reaction to the therapy. That is probably why she didn't recognize that you were in distress afterwards. The rocking and hands over your ears are both signs that you were overwhelmed and needed help. She may have thought that you just needed time to cry it out.
When Linda asked you what you needed from her, you said you did not know. What do you think about it now? Any idea of what she could do or could have done to make you feel better? You are not used to identifying your emotional needs so this question might be troublesome, but it's worth thinking through. It will help you get practice in identifying what you need from others.
I'm glad this all worked out for you! I was thinking of you all through it and praying it was going easy for you. When do you see Linda again? How do you feel about it?
Now you can relax and enjoy your day tomorrow! Do you have any grand plans for your day by yourself? (And by grand I mean jammies, movies and good eats!)
Good night, Shay. Sleep well!
The only thing I think Linda might have tried is to stop the EMDR when you began to get upset. But since I was not there, I'm not sure she could have or that she even knew what you were feeling. Because of that, I don't want to second guess her decisions. But that is something I might do if the person I was seeing was getting to distressed. Sometimes you need to move away from your feelings for a while until you feel calmer and the therapist can offer support and suggestions to get you either to talk about what you are feeling or to help you find ways to cope so you feel less distressed.
Linda is allowed to sit next to you if you feel it would help. Some therapists will even hold your hand, though it is up to each therapist as to how comfortable they feel about that. Ethics are pretty strict and some people may see touching in any form a ethical violation, especially if the therapist and client are male and female. But asking her to sit with you is certainly reasonable.
You're welcome for yesterday! I understand how it feels and I was happy to be there with you until you were ready to go.
If you rule out any possible physical cause for your headaches, then the cause is almost guaranteed to be the stress you have been under. You were going on little sleep and trying to cope with work demands along with feeling distressed by your emotions. Something has to give under that kind of stress and it's common to begin to experience physical symptoms as a result.
Your haircut sounds fun! I'm always curious to see what a hairstylist will do when you let them have their way, but I'm way too chicken to find out.
I'm glad you have a day to enjoy yourself and relax. Even if you do go out, picking out new jeans is fun and not stressful (unless you can't find your size then it gets annoying!). Enjoy your day!
It sounds like Linda did what she could during your session and you felt ok with that. And the experience helped you both know that EMDR is probably not the best option for you now.
Linda sitting next to you may have had an effect, especially if you feel it did. Listen to your gut feeling about it. That will tell you a lot. You know what helps and what doesn't. And sometimes Linda sitting with you will help and sometimes it will make you feel worse. It's just a matter of finding out when that is.
It may help to pay attention to how much stress you feel you are under and when the headaches start to appear in relation to the stress level. You may want to try using a scale of 1 to 10 and rate yourself everyday to help you get more in touch with your stress level.
Have fun today!
It's can be very frustrating to not know why you have migraines. Not knowing why can be even more discouraging than not having many answers on how to stop them. But although it has not been proven yet, it's ok to make the assumption that stress can play a big part in migraines. It doesn't hurt anyway. By tracking your stress levels and seeing how they correspond to your migraines, you might discover a way to control at least some of them.
It sounds like you have been through a lot of testing for your migraines! My sister had to have scans for her migraines and the doctors have found the area of her brain that she was experiencing the headaches. I will ask her more details about what they found in her scans and see if she can shed some light on her experiences for you.
I'm glad that you and Jamie had so much fun! Retail therapy can really help :) It was so kind of you to treat her to some clothes. I bet she was thrilled.
You have been sleeping a lot- that is good to hear. You needed it. When you first started to work on your feelings from the attack and from your past, you were spending most nights coping with nightmares and not sleeping well. Combining the days full of intense emotions with the lack of sleep can take a toll. Although it is normal to go through tough times when you are working through your emotions, it can add up and cause you to crash after a while. That is why I think it's great you are getting this time to take care of yourself and sleep as much as possible. It can often be good therapy in itself to spend time sleeping, resting and enjoying yourself.
You mentioned that right after the EMDR you wanted Linda to rescue you. What do you feel would have helped you? Not being there, it's hard to say at what point she could have stepped in, but your feeling that she needed to rescue you says that you felt she could have done something. What you feel she could have done depends very much on what you needed at the time. And everyone is different so it's ok if you feel you needed something that was out of the ordinary or seems odd to you. This is about getting in touch with your deepest emotions so anything goes.
EMDR is supposed to let you re experience the trauma then reframe it so you do not see it in the same way as you did before. It is not a traditional therapy and has a lot of controversy about it so the effectiveness has not been studied a lot yet. It's not really supposed to give you flashbacks per say. More of memories which are then re framed for you through therapy.
Linda may want to talk about the letter again, if she feels is was unresolved in any way. But if you bring it up, then she probably will want to explore your feelings about it. You may want to talk about how you felt during it if you think that might be unresolved for you.
No nightmares last night! That is good news.
I hope church goes well for you today. I just got back myself and it was nice. Usually is though.
Enjoy your day!
It sounds like you may have felt abandoned when you had your reaction after EMDR. Like Linda brought you to that state but did not follow through with taking you out of it. Does that sound accurate? It is perfectly fine that you feel that way. This is not about blaming Linda for what happened. It's about recognizing your feelings. If we can pinpoint why you feel the way you do about what happened, we can better find the source and resolve it.
I agree that Linda probably could have reached out to you and tried to refocus you back on where you were instead of letting you stay in the past. It had to be terrifying to feel you were back in the past with no way to move yourself out of it.
It can be comforting to know that this will not happen again. You may have flashbacks on your own, but in therapy you will be able to have control over what happens. It's good you decided to avoid EMDR and are staying with regular therapy. It will be much safer, I believe.
I like your idea of writing a letter to Linda. It helped a lot last time and therefore it's safe to assume it will help again. If you need help, I'm willing.
I suspect that you are exhausted, Shay. I know I've said before that therapy is hard work, but it is. You are digging up 20 years of repressed feelings and facing them for the first time, directly. That in and of itself takes a lot of energy. Then you are coping with nightmares, flashbacks, sleep studies and work. You took a big trip recently to see your parents (lots of new stress there since this is the first time you faced them since therapy) and you dealt with the untimely death of a close friend. I had to take a deep breath just writing all that! Who would not be exhausted doing those things?
Your idea of giving up praise team is great. You need time to focus on yourself. And if C tries to keep convincing you, he is only going to end up with one exhausted team member who doesn't really want to be there. You cannot do everything all the time. Something has to give. And with rejoining your old partner at work, you will have your hands full working on that as well. C should understand that, hopefully. Plus, your concern about you being a stronger singer is valid.
Good night, Shay! I hope you have another night without bad dreams.