Have Relationship Questions? Ask a Counselor for Answers ASAP
Hello, I am Rafael. Thanks for asking your question - I'm here to support you.
Grief and fear of abandonment could be devastating experiences literally shaping people’s minds and life.
Is that the answer I paid for - or do we keep talking?
Let's chat here please
I cannot imagine how overwhelming it could be to undergo so much pain around motherhood and having the person you loved so much depart.
Oh thank you. XXXXX am very upset with myself.
Each one of these experiences could impact so powerfully a person’s life to cause depression, withdrawal and the self0sabotage out of it as you report.
And just don't know what to do. This has come to a head with me emotionally.
How do I deal with this?
But here you have been a victim of painful circumstances in life and not a perpetrator. It is understanding and compassion what you need to nurture within yourself and not anger.
I would love to meet someone and have a partnership. I have this pattern.
Sadly most people, out of fear from stereotypes and prejudices do avoid getting professional counseling support to truly work on their own healing process. When this happen we keep holding in fear plus fear, sadness and frustration from several life challenges, so we get depressed.
Yes, I have anger built up inside. I am looked at as successful. Well appointed home, attractive, good job and am financially secure. Telling you this so you can understand that I am a clean living person.
The patterns is there and dominant because you have not allowed yourself to truly heal from past experiences, that’s why they keep shaping your psyche, mood and behaviors around relationships, from the one you have with yourself, to romantic ones.
How do I heal myself?
Many times people, when being skillful and capable at multiple levels, could easily “compensate” emotional emptiness and lack of fulfillment, fears and sadness with growth and success if external areas of life
And, what you just wrote is very true. Thank you.
Taking good care of everything else is very good but, it should not and could not replace the work we need to do in ourselves at that core level.
I have two good friends. One is a Psychotherapist and one is a Psychiatrist however, I don't want to talk to them about this for fear of jeopardising my relationship with them.
People could use from self-help books, to meditation, self-improvement practices, spirituality to counseling and psychotherapy.
Self-help books would not do it for me because I need a face to talk to and bounce ideas and feeling off of.
Ideally a friend nor relative could-should provide such type of professional support, because of potential ethical and competency issues. Dual relationships are illegal and unethical, it does not help to create the alliance necessary for real healing process.
Are my feelings valid? It has taken me all these years to come to this conclusion about myself. That's a start but I am frightened.
And, is my problem 'healable?"
Books are ok, but without the actual work, beyond intellectual understanding is necessary. From exploring to identifying, venting and processing of feeling and development of coping skills and assertiveness, counseling becomes the ideal tool to work on yourself with right support.
Beyond all this pain and wounds, there is a bigger Self inside, one that could and need to emerge, stronger and wiser from these life issues. It is possible but only with your commitment to truly learn to respect, love, understand and support yourself.
Sounds like this will take a long time and a lot of work to get where I want to be.
Yes, it would not happen in a couple of weeks. It is not easy either but tough. It is also necessary and worthy.
I suppose, as I wrote earlier, realising this is an issue I need to deal with, is the first step. But, I am confused and don't like that feeling. Am I crazy?
But you would find that in the very process you would be able to start developing healthy and really effective ways of relieving your feelings, to of supporting yourself with assertiveness and real affection, instead of further numbing and avoidance.
No you are not crazy at all! You are absolutely normal, and this is a natural feeling we all experience when being in situations like this. We are terrified of being vulnerable so of suffering even more. We do not want to eve see at the pain we get inside, even less to expose our hearts to others. But this is necessary, and needs to happen with the right support, getting a supportive ”container” psychotherapy offers.
Good words - numbing and avoidance - that's what I do. I will meet a nice man who is very keen and before you know it - I have found (sometimes with a lot of searching) something wrong with this man and it's over and he's upset, all the while I am ripping him apart in my head. Not tall enough, not rich enough, not smart enough. How frustrating. Those poor men.
You see? That’s what happens whenever we hold in what is overwhelming and pending, acting everything out instead of working on healing, so to own our life and power, taking responsibility of what we choose and create. You neither them deserve such torment.
Do you recommend Psychotherapy over counselling? I don't think going to a Psychiatrist is necessary - I think their process is different.
Pain appears not to make you suffer even more but to push you to awake to reality waiting for you to do something wise about it.
Yes, I want to be wise and thoughtful through this process because it's going to be a very personal one for me. I would not want to share this process with my friends and family.
Psychiatrist are medical professionals trained for prescribing drugs. Psychotherapy is not their scope of expertise nor practice unless they engage in further education-credentials.
Psychotherapy is a deeper version of counseling, none are areas of psychiatry.
Until I can get an appointment or even find a good psychotherpist, can you recommend steps I can take in the interim?
I do recommend you to work on yourself with psychotherapeutic support and on embracing your whole experience. Many times if not most, family and friends –your support system- play or should play an active role in this process.
I would not talk to my sibling about this - I think they have their own issues and wouldn't be very supportive. My friends? Perhaps but I would need to be cautious by opening myself up to some of them.
Choose activities you could engage in which could allow you to get relief in healthy ways, and those leading you to create and promote real fulfillment instead of fake one. You know yourself and what works for you, then set a few activities and stick to them. From arts to working out, social sharing with a good friend at a deeper level, a group, spirituality, r anything using your mind, heart, body or spirit that works for you.
Absolutely, being selective and cautious is a requirement for every healthy and mature relationship. Not wise to expose ourselves and vulnerabilities to uncaring or abusive people.
Also, why am I so judgmental about people? Is that a self protection mode?
I didn't even know I was so judgmental until this scathing email from the man I just broke up with. We were friends for years and he wanted to take it further and I, again, sabottaged it badly...
I feel better - even with this session. Glad I took this route for now.
Yes it is. That’ a way for you to prevent further pain , the problem is that being that way you end alienating yourself and others, undermining potential for mature and fulfilling relationships.
Please feel free to contact me as necessary. I will be here to support you. Please look for a professional psychotherapist with an integral approach.
Integral approach? Please explain.
Psychotherapist not limited to an orthodox approach in rigid ways but one who considers you as a whole human being, not limited to behavioral change for example or excessively focused on the past, but one embracing past and present, behaviors and feelings, values and beliefs too. Traditionally more humanistic approaches, but improved by contemporary-integrative psychology.
I ask that before I even have a session? By the way, I live in Canada. An hour from Toronto and psychotherapists are not plentiful around here.
Absolutely, you need to call a couple and ask them about their approach and therapies offered, expertise on attachment, depressive, anxiety and grief disorders.
Yes, I will do that. Thank you. After my husband died (my son died 6 months before that) I went to a counsellor who told me that my husband willed himself to die because he likely wasn't happy in this life. So, I have to be very careful an dmust choose a good one.
Look for professional psychotherapist, counselors or psychologists with credentials in psychotherapy –clinical psychologists are not the same as psychologists with education-credentials in psychotherapy. Those are the professionals you need.
I am very sorry for that. Such is unacceptable, even abusive and unethical. Please be careful since in this profession, just like with any other filed, you would find good, mediocre and bad professionals.
I suppose we have a 'timed out' session here and may be running out of time?
It is sad but you would find people without real education and credentials in psychology and psychotherapy working in the field. And many who do not have skills nor sensitivity-empathy to offer good support.
There is no time limit here, it is supposed to be brief since it is not online counseling but I am still adjusting to this interface, a new one to me, only worked face-to-face and online before as a psychotherapist but not under this modality.
Thank you for your trust and openness here. Please take consistent action and feel free to contact e back as necessary.
Just, to go over my thoughts here...I am to look for a god therapist. In the interim, do good things for myself. Join a gym, look for ??? I am confused
Yes, understandably a different arena for you. You are clear and concise in your delivery, which is very good.
Engage in activities where you could use body, mind, social self or spirit in productive and enjoyable ways, to feel better and get real relief.
Oops - good therapist - not god therapist. Typo obviously.
Thus it could go from working out, to art class, a group sharing hobby, etc. a meditation or TaiChi class, etc.
Anything healthy and or productive.
Yes - that will be good for me. You have helped me out so very much.
At least I don't have a drug or alcohol problem.
I am glad I was useful. You’re very welcome.
And in talking to you, I feel I can get over this and become healthier...it's doable. Whew.
If I want to contact you again, how do I do that? I wouldn't overwhelm you or bother you.
Where are you located? Meaning, is there a time difference? I am assuming you are in the US?
Absolutely, please do not use psychiatric medication as possible, since it would be recommended by physician s and mental health professionals. I just do not recommend it unless under emergencies or risky situations.
I am not allowed to provide any contact information here, but you are free to look for it. I do work both face-to-face and online.
I am not a pill taker. Never have been. As soon as my husband died, the ER doctor gave me a prescription for antidepressants - didn't take them.
That’s wise as it is to get adequate support. I support you and feel hopeful about your process. Please stick to it.
For me to look for you? Do you do skype therapy? I just feel your advice is professional and clear.
Yes I do.
All right. I 'Google' you ?
Here, feel free to post your questions directed to me and I will reply ASAP though this format – message or chat but in a shorter fashion.
Okay. Good. I will let you go now. Do you have any other advice?
Be totally truthful with yourself, clear about your core and needs and expectations, set your priorities and take consistent actions while developing further understanding, patience and compassion towards yourself and process.
Okay. Thank you. I will keep in touch via this medium. My head hurts !
Thank you and take gentle care.
Have a good day...