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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5839
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Kate: I was just feeling sorry for myself because I felt

Customer Question

I was just feeling sorry for myself because I felt unhappy in general. It was nothing specific, but I did feel just made because I have to do any of this. THEY should be the ones in therapy.
I think you're probably right that my strength and defenses are just down and I'm tired and not able to cope very well. That whole thing with Linda really took a lot of my energy, and I feel like I'm still somewhat on "high alert" with her. some of it may have had to do with telling D. Yes - I was pleasantly surprised by her reaction, and did feel supported. Maybe you're right, that in my mind, that equated to: "it must have been bad." I don't know.
The thing that was embarrassing was that I was out of control. I felt like during it, I was totally absent from current reality (and that's fine - I was by myself), and when I "came back" (so to speak), I couldn't calm down, I wasn't sure how long I'd been on the bathroom floor, and I didn't know why my head hurt. I'm not sure why P just walked in the bathroom - maybe she knocked and I didn't hear her - but I couldn't speak. I was crying really hard and couldn't catch my breath. It kind of freaked her out - she didn't know what was going on. But I had told her several weeks ago about the fact that (at hat time) I had experienced 2 flashbacks before. And we talked about it after the disaster EMDR appointment with Linda. So she kind of clued in after a few minutes and asked me if I'd had a flashback, and I nodded. But she was freaked out by the whole thing. I think that's why she called Linda - yes, she wanted to know if I could take the other pills, but I think more, she just wanted to see if there was something she was supposed to do. I was just embarrassed by the fact that I was disoriented, hyperventilating, crying on the bathroom floor and acting all crazy. I'm sure Linda could care less - I'm sure she has seen people REALLY flip out before. She called this morning and we just talked for a few minutes.
But I feel like it was a major occurrence last night. My whole body hurt all night - I don't know why. I know why my head hurt - because now I have a big bruise on my temple (very attractive :) - Jamie told me this morning when I walked into the office that I seem to get an inordinate number of black eyes considering I have a desk job and clearly no abusive husband.). And my stomach is killing me. I am a mess. I seriously feel like I just went through some major physical event. Weird.
The insight you're talking about - do you mean the fact that I don't think I caused it o happen or what I was saying about the responsibility I feel coming from my childhood experiences of being responsible for everything, even others, as well?
If it's about the fault thing - I really haven't felt in a while that I actually caused it to occur at all. I made poor judgments, but I can accept that - and I really do feel like they had something planned for somebody. If I hadn't been drinking, etc., it probably would not have ended up being me - but that's no consolation, really. My self blame issues are more about how I participated and chose to react during it, and what I did/didn't do afterwards.
I totally forgot to even mention to Linda yesterday during our session about the thought I had the other day that maybe the reason I feel so responsible for what happened and am so worried about trusting people is because I was always responsible for whatever happened relative to me - whether I actually caused it or not, and so I feel responsible for what someone else does if I made a mistake of trusting them. (Kind of like vicarious liability, I guess). We really didn't talk about anything major or specific at all during my session, and I didn't bring that up. We did talk about my telling D and her reaction, but otherwise, Linda was just reading me some stuff and asking what I thought, and going over some ideas of some things she would like me to do. Anyway, I need to try to remember to tell her I want to talk about that Monday.
And, yes - I know that Linda and P were both fine with helping me. And I would do the same for them. But I would probably freak out, too, if P was acting like I was.
Plus, yesterday I didn't want to talk to you. Well, I did - but I didn't want to need to and I was trying to avoid it. It made me mad.
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

Shay, I agree wholeheartedly, those guys are the ones that should be in therapy. But I don't think what you are doing here with your own therapy would be enough for them. They would need some very intense help, along with jail. Plus I am not sure they would have the strength or insight to do what you are doing.

Your whole body might have hurt last night because of your reaction to the flashback. Do you recall what it was about? If it was about reliving the trauma, then that would explain your physical reaction. You would naturally tense against that, and you would use your whole body to react. Plus you mentioned that your stomach hurt for a long time after the attack so that could be why it hurts now.

I meant about how you feel responsible for whatever happens to you whether or not you caused the situation, just as you mentioned in your last paragraph. That was a breakthrough because before you felt that no matter what, if you were in the situation, it was your fault.

I think Linda will feel that your insight is very helpful. It has a lot to do with any issues you have with trusting because you would have to be very sure you could trust someone before you allow any type of friendship or any other relationship with them. It would mean questioning everything about them. It would also mean shutting off your feelings to protect yourself from them until you are sure it is ok.

What made you feel that you didn't want to talk with me yesterday? I think I understand, but I want to be sure.


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Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Yes - the flashback was like being in the situaton again. But I don't think I was actually doing anything. If I had moved around much at all, considering where I was sitting, I would have bruises all ovr the place. I think that my head must have just fallen forward and hit the toilet, but I'm pretty sure I wasn't moving around at all. But I would guess that I probably tensed up my whole body, which may be why I hurt, or maybe that and the stomach thing are just in my head. That's a possibility.

What is your understanding about my not wanting to talk to you yesterday?

Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

I wanted to ask you about it because I didn't want to put any ideas in your mind first.

Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Oh. Well, I have realized (especially when pointed out by the JA folks and also you said something the other day about you and I often talking through the whole day) how much I talk to you and it is becoming a dependency, and I was mad at myself. And that made me be pissed at you (for no good reason) and try to push you away or distance myself. Then I was pissed at myself for posting to you last night when I was feeling down. I have no self discipline. What was your thought?
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Does that tick you off?
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.
There is nothing wrong with us talking all day. It depends on what you feel you need. And it is not so much a dependency as it is a need, and it's only for now. You will not always need to talk with me. A dependency is when you cannot give it up for any reason. But once you are better, you will no longer need me or Linda. And no, that does not make me angry. What you are experiencing is normal.