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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5808
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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Kate: I agree its a good idea

Customer Question

Oops. Wrote this A few hours ago, but accidentally didn't post it. I have to say .... I'm not mad about P's brother coming up anymore (see original post below). Some hard yard work was a good way to start the day ....

I agree it's a good idea for Linda to be more forceful. I understand it's difficult for her to see me struggle, too. But I know myself and I will avoid. She knows that, too, but I think she is afrai of pushing too hard. We talked about this once months ago, and she was glad I said something and she just said that of I really don't want to do something or need to stop, I need to let her know. I imagine she'll be even more timid after the EMDR thing and my being upset with her. But I'd rather she Push than have to go through this multiple times.

Not thrilled this morning. I was sleeping in and p decided. It to go to church and had texted her brother to let him know. And he showed up here at 8 am to help us with some yard work??? The dogs went crazy. I obviously got up, and of course I'm goin to do hard work, because I'm not going to let someone else do work on our house while I am inside. So much for down time. I'm not really happy.

I do feel differently in dealing withy parents. I can't totally pinpoint what it is. I'm not angry, really. I just see that I don't need their input or permission. It's weird. I represent my Dad's bank on all bankruptcy matters. He is the CEO, and he and all of the officers there do what I advise. But in personal matters, it was different.

And I dont talk to them as much. or to my sister and brothe I guess. But my parents seem to sense something too. They have been out of their way supportive to basically anything I say. I feel like they feel they were very close to crossing the line with Katie's funeral and stuff. Plus, my dads best friend just found out he has cancer, and I think my dad is feeling his own mortality.

I don't know. But thing are different in some way.

Off to do some yard work. Uggg.

Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

Yard work on a Sunday morning? I agree with you- ughhh!


I think if Linda knows that you need her to be more forceful with you, she will make the effort. It may not be part of her personality to choose that option outright, but I'm sure she can change how she approaches you if she is aware of it.


I think where you are with your parents is a good place to be. Being angry with them would mean you felt hurt, which you may not feel right now. You may have either worked it through already, or it's in there and you haven't gotten to the point where you have accessed it. Some people experience a time when they feel extremely angry and hurt by their parents' actions. They struggle with how it could have been and why they were cheated out of a normal childhood. They mourn the loss of what could have been. Others ignore how they feel and never really come to grips with the impact of what happened to them. Some people even idolize their parents and cannot see their parents ever at fault. But you seem to be able to recognize what they did when you were a child and see how it has impacted your life. Recognizing that is what counts in your recovery.


Do you feel it would help to talk with them about how you feel? Some people feel that talking to their parents helps them work through their feelings more completely. Since the parents are usually still dysfunctional in their behavior, the response is almost always dysfunctional as well. But the act of expressing their feelings usually helps a person, even if they can't get what they want from their parents.


If your parents are changing some of their behavior based on sensing something different from you, it may be a good sign that they might be open to anything you say to them. Expecting them to have insight and to totally change might be too much, but some shift towards recognizing your feelings might occur. It's worth thinking about.


Enjoy your yard work ;)



TherapistMarryAnn and other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Yeah - I think that Linda will do that. She seemed glad I asked her or have her "permission" before. I think as long as we communicate she will be fine with it. Because I'm sure she sees how I defend if I'm not forced somewhat to deal with the feelings.

I don't feel like I want to talk to my parents how I feel. I don't need them to know. And as you pointed out, they won't accept they did anything wrong. So it will perpetuate the situation. Their take on it will be that I am weak and emotional. I will certainly pick up on that, even of they say nothing. And it will make me mad. I don't really need anything from them. I need to just be fine with me. I do regret what I didn't get an it makes me made that it makes me needy now. But there's nothing to be done about it that includes them. Any energy I spend on it needs to be spent on me - not them. But it is a bonus that they are being either overly-supportive or really careful - because it makes I easy to concentrate on me and not feel bad when they react certain ways. But the beauty is - I live across the country and am totally self-sufficient. I can step back when I need to. I feel good about what's going on there. I am aware, and maybe I haven't processed everything, but I've made some progress and I'm not going backwards. But I feel strongly it's mine to deal with for me and at this point has little to do with them.

As I said, it actually turned out to be nice to get out for a few hours and work and sweat and get some stuff done in the yard. Now I'm going to get some work-work done. Fun stuff. :).
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I was just thinking ...if I have te tonight, I may write down the ground rules I want for going through this and remind Linda what she shouldn't let me get away with, but give her some words I will use or other things to indicate I really can't go further right then. I'll make us both a copy, then when she tells me her rules, I can write them down on that. I am trying really hard not to even think about what to say when we start so I don't just spit it out by memory. But I have reminded myself of my "safe place" and kind of practiced "being there.". (of course, my safe place is at home with my dog. She is a 120 lb horse of a thing and this weekend has developed a new habit of jumping on our laps without warning [usually she sits beside me and scoots over little by little] - so that's not really the calm I had in mind :). Plus, in doing so, she flipped P's iPhone into her coffee - I don't know where this new behavior came from, but she's going to squish one of us. It's a good thing she's sweet-tempered).
Expert:  TherapistMarryAnn replied 5 years ago.

It sounds like you are in a good place with the situation with your parents. You have thought it out and know where you stand. And if you ever want to get deeper with it you can, or you can keep your distance when you need to and protect yourself. That is great, Shay.


Let me know how writing out your ground rules works out. I think it's an excellent idea to do them now so you have time to think them through to be sure you address what you want to address.


Your safe place is with a 120 dog who flips cell phones into coffee cups and sits on people? At least you will be laughing when you take yourself there! I love it. Big dogs are great.


I still haven't had time to look up the music you suggested. Busy, busy day. But I hope to have time tomorrow. It's been on my mind all day.


Good night, Shay. Sleep well.