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Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC
Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Hi Kate. :) been a while. A lot has gone on. :).

Customer Question

Hi Kate. :) been a while. A lot has gone on. :).
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC replied 1 year ago.
Hi Shay! It's great to hear from you. I was just thinking of you this past week wondering how you are doing. What has been happening?

Kate
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Well, a lot. New house, new (old) firm, new pt job, even a new car. So many changes. I hate change, generally, but these all seem to be good ones. I have been overly busy with the 2 jobs and being chair of the bankruptcy bar. I am getting behind on my work, so I need to cut down on the trustee stuff or do something. I am in Ohio this weekend for my Dad's retirement party. Everyone is here - my sister and her whole family, my brother and his family. It's been 5 years since all of us were together. I mean, all of them are together frequently, but I'm usually not with them. Just went to my 8 year old nephew's basketball game. Hilarious!

I still going to Linda - more like every other week lately. I still going to rose for EMDR every week. And still going to dr m at least once a month. The EMDR was not working too well and just making me miserable all the time. So I took a few week break and rose and Linda go together and decided that the guilt/shame/self-blame thing was blocking my tall therapy (which was why I was sent for EMDR on the first place), but that it is also blocking the EMDR process. So they decided I should do EMDR on childhood/family issues, n/c they think the shame is deeply rooted and was there before the incident. So - they are now coming to the same conclusion you had right off the bat :). The EMDR does seem to work for the childhood stuff and it's not very upsetting unless my mind keeps sliding to the incident. She does a good job of explaining the significance of certain things and drawing connections to what happened, how I reacted, how I feel, etc.

I went through a period (when I took the few weeks off) when I was really frustrated, because neither rose not Linda could understand what I was trying to tell them - basically, that pretending or visualizing things that are not true does not work for me- and I happened to have a med aptmt with dr. M. I told her I was frustrated and what I had been trying to tell them, and she understood and told me how to tell them and offered to tell them for me. She has been very helpful, even aside from the meds. I made a long aptmt with her and decided to tell her the whole thing. I did that on Tuesday.

I have been frequently feeling like exploding and can't get any relief. Dr m put me on a new sleep med, which helps. But I had been having urges for a long time to cut myself and I was convinced it would give me some relief, & I finally tried it. I told Linda, & she asked a bunch of uncomfortable questions. She wanted to tell rose, and I said no and that she couldn't tell dr m either. She apparently spoke to dr m right before my appointment Tuesday. She said she didn't tell her that, but I asked her specifically, and she admitted she told her not to sit and stare at me and to "support" me as I told her everything. That made me mad and made me feel like I couldn't take dr m's reactions as genuine. She told me all this when I spoke to her after my appointment with dr. M. And she started asking me about cutting, if i was feeling that way, if I was tempted to do it again that night. I old her i wished i had not told her. The. I had an appointment with rose Wednesday, it went okay, but brought some things up. I spoke to Linda on the way home. We talked for a few minutes and she said to go home and go in my bedroom with my dog and music, and try to just put things out of my mind and thin happy thoughts. I instantly started crying and said "do you realize you just said something my parents would say?" She got all alarmed ands sled what I meant. I told her she just basically td me to forget about it and don't be upset. She said that's not what she meant. I just told her I had to go, because I was really upset. I am supposed to see rose on Tuesday when I get back. I don't have a set appointment with Linda right now. I'm not sure what I'm going to do. I feel out of control a little.
Expert:  Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC replied 1 year ago.
Wow Shay, you have been through a lot since we last talked. Congratulations on your new part time job and your position as chair of the bankruptcy bar. A new car and home too? You really have made a lot of changes. I agree, they are good ones but even good ones can still bring on the stress so I understand how you are feeling. Cutting back should help.

It sounds like you are enjoying your weekend with your family. Getting together can be good or bad but it sounds like your experience has been a good one!

I'm glad that Linda and Rose helped you get to the root of the issue with the EMDR. I agree, the shame was deep coming from all you had to go through as a child. Focusing on helping you work through that shame first can change how you experience the shame about the incident. After all, you are going to react in a way that you learned to react as a child. We all do that. What we learn as "normal" as a child is how we approach our emotions as an adult.

You mentioned feeling like you wanted to cut yourself and eventually did. I think that might have come from some of the pain you were looking at in EMDR. Cutting brings "relief" from strong emotions that hurt you. It is a coping mechanism that is used for quick relief. But as you probably know, it eventually just brings on more shame and guilt. How you felt is very understandable considering that you are facing some of your deeper pain. I can help you with ways to avoid cutting by replacing the feeling with other coping mechanisms. Let me know if you feel you want to explore that here or if you already did with Linda.

I'm sorry that things took a bad turn with Linda. It sounds like you feel Linda broke some of your trust by telling Dr. M and wanting to tell Rose about your cutting. And Linda also telling Dr. M to respond to you when you talk to her. You feel she crossed some boundaries with not leaving it up to you to share what you wanted with Dr. M and Rose. Also, you didn't feel Dr. M's response to you was genuine then if Linda prompted her and I imagine that you were counting on it to be. You already talked to Linda about it, which is great. But it sounds like her response to you only hurt you further and brought up some painful memories from the past. It is no wonder you feel upset.

You may want to try talking to Linda again and letting her know that what you say in therapy with her stays there unless you directly ask her to share. It may be beneficial to have Rose, Dr. M and Linda talk to each other in order to help you, but in a way it hurts you too. Sitting down with Linda and talking out where you want the boundaries to be would help stop the potential for more hurt.

Also, it may help to realize that there is some transference going on with Linda. She probably did not realize that telling you to try to forget about the issues for a while would remind you of your parents. She most likely meant that you needed a break and some time to work this through. But it triggered pain for you. When you think about it, it helps to tell yourself that Linda is not the same as your parents. She wants you to feel better and wants you to express your feelings. She is safe to be with. In other words, she is very different. By reminding yourself of that when you feel upset, it can change your feelings towards her and help you feel more open.

Kate
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Just to be clear - she did not tell dr m about the cutting. And I have wanted dr m to talk to both rose and Linda - dr m and rose worked together for years. Rose and Linda go to the same church and have Bible study together. I wanted dr m in the loop because she was able to understand me and explain things to me so I understand. That way, I can go to her if i start getting frustrated. But I don. Know if she has talked to rose. Rose never says anything. Dr m asked me who to call first, and I said rose, but I wasn't sure why. I told her I thought rose had more direction. But rose likes to just do EMDR. Sometimes we talk, but then it seems like she wants to make sure we get back to the EMDR. Usually, when I go in, she says right off the bat "we are doing EMDR today. Take a minute and think about what picture you want to bring up". That's okay, and I appreciate the structure, but sometimes there is something really bothering me. Also, Linda had told me that hey scored to have rose focus the EMDR on childhood stuff. The session before I took a break, she wanted me to focus on when my parents found out and their reaction. But rose never said a thing when I went back in and she just wanted to do the EMDR. I had to tell her to hold up and talk to me about it. And she still didn't say much.

I understand what you are saying about the transference thing with Linda. I will try to keep that stuff in mind when I get upset with her. I know she cares about me and wants me to feel better. But sometimes I feel like she cares too much and can't stand for me to be upset and sad and so wants to put a temporary bandage on things rather than fixing it. ??? I understand that and understand that sometimes that needs to be done, because therapy cannot progress if I am always in crisis mode - but I don't feel like I've been in crisis.

I don't think things have turned bad with Linda. I was just upset and her attempts to maker feel better were making me feel worse. Dr m said I feel so bad about all this because I haven't "let go." I know I need to stop all this. I just can't seem to get a grip.

Any suggestions on coping would be good. You are right that I just felt more guilty and ashamed. But I won't be dealing with it with Linda. I don't even want her to mention it again. She told me not to be sorry I told her and she wouldn't ask me about it all the time, but she needed to understand what got me to that point. But I don't want to talk to her about it, so I won't.

And yes - this trip home is good. My Dad's arty was tonight it was a surprise and it actually worked. I think he was touched. As one of my HS friends had said on fb, when I asked in what other town would a person's retirement be front page news, this is a small town, and he is sort of a big deal here. It was quite the event. Fun, though. :)
Expert:  Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC replied 1 year ago.
Shay,

I understand your feelings about Dr. M, Rose and Linda sharing. And that is good. It can get a bit muddled at times it sounds like, but in the end if it benefits you, then it's good to keep it that way.

I know you and I have talked before about the emotions you are experiencing and how learning to cope with them can be difficult because of how you were raised. You never learned as a child how to cope or manage emotions because all the energy was focused on keeping your feelings down or ignoring them. So now that they are free to come out, you don't have a "tool box" in dealing with them. That is ok. You will get there.

One of the first things you can do when you feel like you did with Linda is to realize that although feelings are important, they can sometimes mislead as well. It's easy to feel overwhelmed by them when you feel upset. They can seem to take over and you don't know what to do or how to react. Everyone feels that way at one time or another. The next time you experience what you felt about Linda, try taking a deep breath and tell yourself that although your feelings are legit and important, you need time to calm down. Breath deep and try to allow your thoughts to take over for a bit. Think the situation through, write it down, talk it out with someone else, etc before you decide how to react.

Also, when you want to share something emotionally powerful with Linda, Rose or Dr. M, decide ahead of time what you want out of the situation. Are you looking for support, advice, just to talk? What kind of reaction are you looking for? Then as you tell them what you feel, add what you want. For example, when you told Linda about the cutting, you might have said "I just want you to listen". That way, you can express what you need that will help you to feel better. And Linda can provide that for you.

I'm glad to hear that things are going so well for you on your visit home. It sounds like your Dad is quite popular!

Kate
Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5402
Experience: Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks, XXXXX XXXXX to you soon :)
Expert:  Kate McCoy, M.Ed, NBCC, LPC replied 1 year ago.
Anytime, Shay! It was so good to talk with you again and get caught up. Let me know how things go for you. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

Kate

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