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TherapistMarryAnn, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 5809
Experience:  Over 20 years experience specializing in anxiety, depression, drug and alcohol, and relationship issues.
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This answer was rated:

Hi Kate,++++++++++++++++++++
No problem!
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hi Kate,
thank you. London does sound exciting, I have been thinking about it some today. I may wait 'til the end of term, or the last week of term anyway, Poppy is meant to be having activity week, but she isn't keen, and has requested holiday leave for then which I wasn't happy about to begin with, but now it's worked out well with these thoughts of London. I just need to see when Sam finishes college, it's usually earlier than schools anyway.
I have had no electricity today, if I had I would have started to check out places to stay. But there is plenty of time. It just won't be at a time when we all need it the most, when D gets his letter, but I'll have to arrange something else for that time, friends or another port of call.
The weather is beautiful today, a real hot one, though not as hot as you may get. K told me it was 98f yesterday, I'm not sure what we are today (actually it's 23 C), but we work in centigrade anyway, so I get confused. I bathed Poppy's pony's mane and tail this morning, got well hot, then took him for a walk. I was glad to have a shower and put on a SKIRT!! Unheard of (Poppy said WHAT are you wearing mum?!?)
I was glad I slept well last night, K was concerned I may have a bad night after my session, but I was quite exhausted. The sunshine does brighten the soul, and awaken the mind, but both mine are seriously flagging now. I'm at Poppy's music theory lesson, pleasant surroundings, piano playing, kids playing tennis. I was a bit more focused with Kitty this afternoon, no glaring mistakes, just forgetting to attach files to emails before hitting send, but no harm done:)
I am home now, supper and chores done and dusted. Kids are out, nice evening. D home via the pub, then out again. I am home alone. I'm not doing good feeling muddled and scared.
I don't know how long D was in the pub, but it was at least an hour bc he was there when I passed to pick Sam up. he can in in good spirits, well I mean foolishly, childishly high, and behaved like a big kid at the supper table, winding the kids up about this fridge freezer he is getting. I believe it's a double doored model, much like yours no doubt(!!??!)- they are known as American style in the shops. He continued like this through supper, the kids enjoying it to a point, then a friend of Poppy's arrived and he told them all a joke, which was funny I admit, and the kids laughed lots.
But my head is screaming, I cannot do this anymore. I want out, he wants in with all his might, making this FF thing so so big for the kids, it has an ice dispenser etc. Jokes. At least he isn't fighting with them.
I have come to my room to try to calm myself, listening to gentle celtic music, it's lovely, but I'm feeling really screwed up inside, sick. I have got the papers out to see what else I have to do. There is a form 'Statement of arrangements for children'. I have to fill in some of the form, and D has to sign in agreement of the arrangements as stated. That means I'll have to talk to him about it, I don't know how I can do that.
I've missed you today, I forgot we wouldn't have power.
PS do the moderators ever say anything to you about how many answers per thread? JA have stopped my sub so I don't know how long I can keep going with this account.
Hi Rose! I missed you today too. I'm glad to hear from you.

It sounds like you have a possible trip in the works! That's great. The chance to get away is always nice.

Why didn't you have electricity today?

It has been warm here so far this year. It does not bode well for a cool summer!

It's good you did better at work. But just from reading your post, I can tell you are feeling down and tired. You are carrying a huge emotional burden with this divorce and having to face Dave with it. Deciding when to send the papers and thinking about how he might react are both very stressful and can take a toll on you.

His ability to make the kids laugh does not mean he is good husband or father material. He has a talent at manipulation and making the kids laugh is part of that. He wants to try to create a picture that says everything is ok at home with the family. Because to face the truth is too much for him. He doesn't want to know that he has to change in order to make his marriage work, so he uses what he has to try to "fix" it and make it seem ok.

The most important thing is how you feel about it. What it means to you that Dave does manipulate. When you look at that and work to fix it, then what he does will not have any bearing on you.

The moderators never discuss anyone's account with the experts so I never know what goes on. I only answer questions and contact them if I need help or if you may need help. But that is it. I'm sorry they keep making you change your accounts. I am not sure why they need to do that. It is confusing! Let me know what happens.

TherapistMarryAnn and 2 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Thank you Kate,
I have just been emailing Adam in Customer Services, tears falling fast, I'm scared I'm losing you, my last two questions I asked have been locked. I just don't get it, don't. This is my last question, I've been trying to do it right, I'll just have to try harder. I am feeling so low, now the lid is going on, I wonder if he'll let me have another account

I can't see why he wouldn't let you have another account. I know of other people that have been customers for a long time and they are still on, so it should work out. I can get involved if it gets to that point and see what they can tell me. Don't worry Rose, I'll work out.


If your account situation works out, we can always stick to one question one answer then open a new one as we finish. I think that might work better to keep you off the radar.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
OK, I'll try to sort it out tomorrow. Thank you Kate, I'm getting myself all worked up here, not really in control.
Our power was down bc the Electric Board was putting up a new telegraph pole up the road. All sorted, but no cups of tea, and no JA this morning!
I've filled in the child arrangement form. I might send it off without D signing it.
I must sleep now.
Thank you, ***** ***** holding my hand
Goodnight Kate

You're welcome! Try not to worry. It'll work out.

Have a good night and I'll talk with you tomorrow.


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Morning Kate,
it's another beautiful and baking hot day, I love being in vest and shorts. I wish I wasn't struggling so much. This morning Sam insisted on staying at home from his one lesson so he could study. He has done 20 mins all morning and spent the rest of the time stressing over the poor internet signal to his room, and trying to get a booster to work, that we bought a few months back. He has no patience and is so easily angered I have to walk away and leave him, hitting things, I can hear him crashing about from the washing line. He has apologised to me, but continues to be demanding, and gets upset with me when I am a tad stressed with him. I don't know what he will do with his future, he is very bright but worries me a lot.
I am trying to keep the tears at bay this morning, they are so close all the time. Everyone talks of transition, I keep thinking of transition phase of childbirth, being a time that feels uncomfortable, not in control, confusing. I know it's a period of growth, that something good is potentially at the end of it. But it is making me ill, feel bad, cope less, hide more, and sometimes hope less.
I see Adele after Kitty, I have no idea what to talk about today, I just feel like I'm whining talking about the obvious. Maybe I need to identify bits of me I want to work on. I don't know.
Talk later
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
ps, I have got a new email address set up, just need to open a new account, I assume. See what happens today. I'll tell you my new username, when I'm moving, but maybe you can guess it?


Good morning! It sounds like your weather is about like ours, hot and more hot. It's supposed to be a record breaker weekend. It's too early for all this!

Sam sounds like he is imitating Dave. If that is so, I understand your concern. He may just be modeling the behavior, and being that he is young yet, he may grow out of it with help. If you can, try to encourage him to continue with his therapy. He needs to understand that the way he handles his stress is not a productive one. Learning new coping skills would help him. It won't happen overnight, but if he is willing to work on it, he can learn to deal with his feelings in a different way. You may want to read this link over and try to suggest some of the techniques to him when he is feeling calmer and more open to suggestion:

It's very understandable that you feel as you do during the divorce process. It is overwhelming and difficult. You have never done this before and you are trying to get out of a very abusive relationship. You are used to the way things worked with your marriage and now you are rocking the boat in a big way. Dave has always warned you about defending yourself, making many threats. Now you are going against that. It's going to make you feel upset and anxious. Accepting these feelings is not easy. You naturally want to feel that things are not so up in the air. But telling yourself that this is only temporary can help. And you can try to find stabilizing things in your life to help you feel more grounded. What are some things that you feel help you feel more grounded? Routine often helps. Talking to anyone who is supportive. Creating a new routine and following it as much as possible. Extra time resting, sleeping and making sure you are eating well are all important. And making sure you are doing some stress relieving yourself, like taking a deep breath when you feel upset, taking time to close your eyes and imagining a peaceful scene or taking a long walk. Whatever you feel would help you most.

I think you will find something to talk about with Adele. You are under a lot of stress now and at the very least that is a great topic to bring up. Let me know how it goes.
I hope everything else works out today. Keep me up to date ;)


TherapistMarryAnn and 2 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you

Hey Rose,

I got your message. I am sorry. I hope everything works out. I will check back in tomorrow to see if you have posted.

If you can talk tomorrow, let me know how things are at home. I have been thinking about you.

Good night, Rose.


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hi Kate,
I'm soso glad to see you. I was very sad that my long post to you last night had been removed. I am asking if I can get it back again, but I doubt it. I have been fretting all morning, just a little something I could do without at the moment. I will start a new account. I hope all will be well. Sigh.
Thank you for dropping me a quickie. I write once I'm settled


I found your lost post in my old email so I am going to repost it and respond, if that is ok.

Hey Kate, thank you, ***** ***** I can put my feet up at last. Sam. He does need to continue with his therapy, I must address it again. I left him at lunch time hopefully studying. When I next saw him he was helping D move the new fridge into place. When I came up the stairs Poppy was sitting crying, I crouched down and put my arms around her. Both Sam and D told me she didn't deserve comfort, I should hear it from them. All I wanted to do was make her feel better, not find out what happened in the first instance. She had apparently been asked to help wash and dry parts of the fridge. Sam dropped something and it broke, I don't know what happened after that, but Poppy didn't want to help anymore and went to sit down. I can imagine there was lots of abusive language, Poppy said she was spoken to really badly by both Sam and D for not wanting to help, and she was so upset she was sick. It took a while for her to settle down, but I didn't get to the bottom of it all before she went to see a friend (I think she wanted to get out of the house for a while.) Sam continues to help D move the FF, and has to do things D's way, even though Sam's suggestions are more intelligent. Once the FF is in place D goes out and I have supper ready for the kids and me. Sam is unable to eat. He says he's not hungry. He is up, pacing about, looking in the fridges for something else to eat (he says he feels bad he can't eat what I have prepared, but I say it's fine, have what you fancy) He makes some toast. He cries. I say please tell me what's wrong. He says he's just had a shit stressful day. I say what has happened? Nothing specific. Really mum it's nothing , I'm just stressed. He's just not coping well. He has an exam tomorrow. He's been out for a couple of hours, just back with some friends. I'm sure there will be cannabis. He's just come down to ask me if I can pick him up from college tomorrow after his exam. I wasn't thrilled about a second trip to town tomorrow, but I relented quickly before he escalated again. I wonder if Concerta has side effects like this, I'd better check it out. Thank you for the stress link. Wow, there's a lot there (for me too!)I'll email it to Sam too so he can read it. They had a talk about stress at college a week or so ago, he said he related to so much of what was being said. I will definitely encourage the counselling again. I am worrying now about the extra stress that the divorce papers will put on the kids. There will be no way that D will keep them to himself, or just want to talk to me about them. At least Sam has 3 weeks before his next exam, and only one subject at college until his exams are over, and a week off (half term holiday). I shall put the signed forms in the post tomorrow, without D's signature on the children's arrangement form. Mark can send it to him with the divorce petition. I feel terrible that I'm not discussing it with him, and that he will have a real shock when it comes in the post. I really feel I should tell him. I think Mark is expecting me to. K says not to if it will make me more stressed, or likely have a bad reaction from D (what else can I expect?) Work with Kitty was good, went smoothly today. I had a quiet session with Adele, it's all very vague in my memory. But we talked a bit about my emotional tool box being rather empty, I wasn't given a very good set to use in my childhood, and that is why I am struggling so much now. She said I am very high on...something to do with hyper vigilance..... and low on self-soothing (as you have told me), the rest I forget. She said she was thinking today of referring me for a 12 week course of specific therapy to build on self worth and other stuff that I forget (that is so annoying). She was very encouraging that I should sign and post. She said last week as I was sitting on her cushions talking about me in my room, and that I stay in my room and don't sit in the lounge, and then we talked about D not being there, and she watched me change from being tightly closed into myself, to taking a deep breath and spreading myself out as if he was giving me room to breathe and I felt I could move about and be comfortable and relaxed. I'd forgotten I did that. Adele was lovely, I struggled to express myself, but she seems to know what I want to say. She hasn't told me that our time is almost up. I asked her in an email last week how many sessions we could have, but she didn't read my email before seeing me last week, and I didn't ask her directly. I don't know if the NHS has a limit on session numbers. I guess I should ask her again. She gave me a big big hug at the end of our session, she didn't want to let me go! She said I'm doing really well, and being brave. It was still lovely sunny and warm when I left Adele, and I didn't feel I wanted to go straight home (if I had I would have caught the row at home), so I sat on a bench on the lawn of the therapy house, surrounded by mature trees. I'd like to say it was peaceful, but chainsaws rarely are, but it was peaceful in a way, with the surroundings, and I just sat, for half an hour, sometimes with tears, sometimes just with a blank mind, enjoying the new young leaves on the copper beech and oak trees. Monkey puzzle trees are bizarre, they are not one that I'd wish in my garden! D is out Morris Dancing! there's always plenty of beer, and he's taken my car:( Poppy's back now, I need to talk to her a find out if she's OK from what went on earlier. Tomorrow I see my chiropractor. I do believe that I am feeling some benefit at last, I have been able to bend over more easily, and can almost pick up a basket of washing without making an unpleasant noise!! Really really tired. I can't believe it's that late. Goodnight Kate, and thank you again :) Hope you are OK Til tomorrow Rose

It sounds like Sam and Poppy both were suffering from the abuse Dave dishes out. Here is how it should have gone instead:

Dave- Can I have some help with the new FF?

Poppy and Sam- Ok

Poppy- I'm a bit tired.

Dave- That is ok. Just help as much as you can and maybe you could rest then help us move the food in the new FF when we are ready.

Poppy- Sounds good, Dad. Thanks

Then on from there. But that is not what Dave does. What Dave does is dominate and abuse. You mentioned yourself that Sam had many good suggestions as to how to accomplish the job. What could have happened instead is Dave could have seen Sam's efforts and made a choice to incorporate some of them into the move. Then Sam would have gained self confidence and felt like a man. And Dave would have showed Sam how a man handles such situations. But instead, that is not what Sam got. Both kids were abused and end up in tears and frustrated. Worse, Sam is learning that it is ok to yell and scream at Poppy, making her feel ganged up on. It's a nightmare situation each time Dave is involved.

You were right to comfort Poppy. She may not have done her part, but she didn't deserve how she was treated in response. Dave should have tried with her then gave her a fair punishment that did not involve verbally abusing her. That is appropriate. And Sam was hurting because of being yelled at by Dave and demeaned. So he turns to drugs and his friends to block it all out.

I see why you feel the divorce will add stress to the kids' lives, but it is also a blessing in disguise. They will no longer be in Dave's direct path, which would help a lot with how they feel. They would finally have the freedom to be themselves and start working on what is bothering them, without additional abuse being heaped on them all the time. The longer they are with Dave, the worse off they are.

Telling Dave ahead of time is up to you. Only you know what it is like with him. But I agree with K, at least in how it looks from the outside. It's only going to upset Dave knowing those papers are on their way and he will target you with his feelings. It may be better to let him get the papers then prepare yourself for his response. Any chance you can get him out of the home once the papers are served? Or at least start the ball rolling? Do you think having someone there who can take Dave in or a relative of yours might help? Having some sort of plan will help your anxiety and provide you and the kids protection if he does go off. And don't forget, calling the police would handle both problems at one time. You can protect yourself and get Dave out of the home. So if he does anything remotely abusive, call immediately.

It sounds like your session with Adele went very well! It is common to forget what you do in therapy because you are so busy with thinking everything through and trying to work with your feelings that you are more than distracted. You could ask Adele if you can tape the sessions, that might help. And it would be good for later if you feel upset. You could also take notes right afterwards so you catch the main points.

I could not agree more with Adele about your hyper vigilance and low on the self soothing. You are too used to being abused and it has caused you to live on the edge all the time. Working on increasing your emotional tools is going to go a long way to helping you recover from what you have been through. The stress link could be a good start for you, if you want. You can try one thing (don't overwhelm yourself!) and incorporate it into your day. If you feel you need more time, do it for a week or so, until you feel you have mastered it. Then move on from there. I can help you find more ways to fill that emotional tool box if you want.

I agree with Adele, it is hard to let you go! I enjoy our talks so much. And I feel like we haven't chatted in ages. I hope things work out for you and we can keep going. I think they will.

I hope you are having a good day today. I will be on for a while in case you can talk. If not, I'll check back later.


TherapistMarryAnn and 2 other Mental Health Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
you are amazing. Thank you for finding that post! How weird was that, there was nothing in there that shouldn't have been was there?
I began a new account and left you a question, but it has been locked. Can I try again? If I can't have a new sub then I will have to cut right down. But I'll see what happens first. I'm going to reply over there, but will copy your post if that's OK.
Feeling very muddled today, muddled and anxious
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Can you give me a heads up when you're ready please :) redpapillon


Thank you! Amazing is nice ;)

It is odd that your last post was lost. I am glad we were able to recover it, though. I really wanted to respond to what you had wrote.

I think your new account will work. It may just take time to set up.

I am ready when you are!


Customer: replied 5 years ago.
I am feeling very despondent. My new account has been disabled. I am allowed to continue with this account, but not have a sub.
I will start a new Q on this account. Back in a minute
Grrr, how frustrating! I am sorry about this. If you keep having issues, let the moderator know again. They should be able to help. I'll be here for you however long it takes, so don't worry!
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hi Kate,
thank you, ***** ***** know, I have been in touch today, I expect that's why it's disabled. I will just be on pay as you go from now on :(
OK, new Q coming.....
Ok, I'll look for it.
Customer: replied 5 years ago.
Hey Kate,
I just wanted to say thank you for making me feel good, agreeing with Adele for not wanting to let me go, enjoying my company, our chats. You are very special to me :)

You're welcome, Rose! I feel the same way.

Talk with you soon,


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