thread for people who are not recovering

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mourningdove

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2016, 03:43:39 AM »
Thanks, Meursalt! I hope you find some relief, too.  :hug:

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Wife#2

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2016, 12:31:13 PM »
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How are YOU doing?

I wouldn't know where to begin, but thank you very much for asking, Wife#2.  :hug:

Plumping up some pillows, blankets and throwing down some mattresses - to help make your landing easier. We all free-fall sometimes. Just know that there are people in this world who give a d**n how you feel and what you're going through. You matter and regardless of how bad you think/know it is right now, we'll be here beside you.

Sure, we clicked on this thread because we're having our own setbacks. That just means we really do get it. When you're ready, we'll be here.  :hug:

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Kizzie

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2016, 09:30:51 PM »
Right here too Mourningdove and sending you (and everyone) much support  :hug:   

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Joeybird

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #18 on: September 30, 2016, 02:06:59 AM »
To everyone who feels they aren't recovering -- setbacks are horrible, but they aren't unusual. The good news is that they are temporary.  When I'm in one, I try to stay away from thinking gloomy things, and sometimes I can. I've been in therapy three years now, and I'm so much better in many ways. But every time I come up against the wall of knowing that I won't go back to the person I used to be, it takes me a couple of day to recover.

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Biscuits

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #19 on: November 14, 2016, 12:04:35 PM »
Hello

I dont know if this will help anyone or not, but I think its useful to ignore the claims lots of therapies, and sometimes therapists, make about how long it should take to get better. Its something I've seen myself from experience, and which I was amazed (and slightly depressed) when I saw it in black and white in Pete Walker's book - recovery can take many many years, especially when we are all trying to recover in a system of treatment that is barely at the point of truly recognising it, still arguing over what it is and whether it exists.

I guess the following is a list of daft rabbit holes, stuff that's worked and things to avoid I wish I had known many years ago  :doh: May not apply to anyone else at all, maybe some of it, maybe all of it.. hope its helpful.

I have been having therapy and medications of different sorts since I was 21, and I am 38 now. Ive had three or four years of CBT, three years of Schema Therapy, 2.5 years of Client Centred Counselling and 2 years of Coherence Therapy (a trauma centred therapy which is a bit experimental and ironically, was meant to be "brief"  :bigwink: ). The biggest piece of advice I can give is to trust your gut on what it is you need to do. CBT is very "heady". Its all about thoughts - but with CPTSD and the disconnection from feelings, most of the time you may not know what you are thinking or feeling. So if you need to go down more into your body, follow that. Have the courage to tell your CBT therapist that working in thoughts and behaviours just is not working right now.

Client centred was very good, because it allowed me to just "be". Very validating, helped me to explore and deepen. No challenging, no behavioural plans which I had no clue how to connect to my emotions. Schema was an inbetween - a lot of stuff from the past, though ultimately we were working with a misdiagnosis of BPD, which I do not have. This caused more damage than it provided healing.

Coherence really ended up just being someone nice to talk to. Again there was more deepening, validation and allowing to be. Out of my own research I found "focusing" by Eugene Gendlin, which really, REALLY helped with making sense of all the nameless pain and emotion I had struggled for years with. Its like mindfulness, but does way more than mindfulness as it is more directed rather than all-accepting, which can ultimately be fruitless.

If you are feeling stuck, listen to your gut of where you think you need to go. It may be your body, not your head. It may be you need to go towards anger, not acceptance. You may need to rage, not meditate. Seeing all of this stuff validated in Pete's book was both validating and frustrating - things I had learned the hard way to be true. If you have not read it, I would highly recommend reading his book Surviving To Thriving. There's some bits of it that don't really work for me, and other bits that are extremely helpful.

At the moment I am stuck on fighting the inner critic in order to give way to grieving, as the critic part is just as fierce as ever. His recommendation just for this stage is essentially CBT type thought challenging, and thankfully as the other therapies have freed up emotions and the ability to name them, this step feels possible now.

Recovery is like a rubiks cube. If you feel like you keep twiddling the same face and are getting nowhere, switch tactics, and try to take as many paths at it as you can. And .. beware of panacea, beware of "5 step processes", beware of anything that claims its easy. There really isnt an easy way - there's only the combination that works for you.

Don't get attached to a therapy or approach. Its easy to find something that helps, and believe it is the One True Way, become evangelical about it. It helps with motivation to stick with it, but it can also make you ignore what's NOT working and become too invested in "selling" it to others, perhaps even make forays into becoming The Guru (looks at self in mirror :| )

Oh, and if you're a perfectionist or people pleaser - be careful not to try and be "good at therapy" and get an 'A' from your therapist :D Its the one place you really need to be emotionally honest, be free to screw up, be lazy, be whatever. One quote I remember reading - "therapy doesn't really begin until the client gets angry with the therapist". Worth bearing in mind :)
« Last Edit: November 14, 2016, 12:19:00 PM by Biscuits »

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Manchesterford

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #20 on: November 14, 2016, 01:06:25 PM »
Sending love to all. I often feel much the same.  But please remember that everyday you wake up is a day you are recovering,  it isn't a quick process,  and every day is a step.

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Dee

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #21 on: November 14, 2016, 02:53:08 PM »

I posted earlier in this thread, feeling like I wasn't recovering.  Looking back, that wasn't true.  I was in a hard spot.  The other day I told my son he could chose to reply to the numerous and irrational texts from his dad or he didn't have to.  The choice was his, he didn't even have to read them.  I also told him I am not telling him to not see his dad, but I want him to know it is a choice.  Then I stepped back and realized that a year ago I would have been in a panic feeling like I needed to please his dad, in fear of making him angry.  I would of also tried to get my son to do what his dad wanted, again in a panic mode.  I'm not doing that now, it is huge progress.

Biscuits - I laughed when I saw the comment on perfectionism and people pleasing.  The first time my therapist gave me a book to read, I read it twice in a week and made notes.  She explained that isn't what she wants.  I still try to please, but she sees through it.  In fact, she has worked with my dietitian to communicate they are not looking for a good student.  My dietitian now asks if I did something for me or to  please her.  I am doing a few months of IRT (image rehearsal therapy) and I was given a paper to write imagery of a safe place.  I of course typed it, reviewed it, edited and edited.  She read it and went on and on that it was very, very good.  She hasn't got the message yet :)  It will be nice when the day comes that I understand I don't have to prove myself.  I suspect that is going to be harder because that goes back to guilt and shame.

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Biscuits

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #22 on: November 14, 2016, 03:49:12 PM »

I posted earlier in this thread, feeling like I wasn't recovering.  Looking back, that wasn't true.  I was in a hard spot.  The other day I told my son he could chose to reply to the numerous and irrational texts from his dad or he didn't have to.  The choice was his, he didn't even have to read them.  I also told him I am not telling him to not see his dad, but I want him to know it is a choice.  Then I stepped back and realized that a year ago I would have been in a panic feeling like I needed to please his dad, in fear of making him angry.  I would of also tried to get my son to do what his dad wanted, again in a panic mode.  I'm not doing that now, it is huge progress.

Biscuits - I laughed when I saw the comment on perfectionism and people pleasing.  The first time my therapist gave me a book to read, I read it twice in a week and made notes.  She explained that isn't what she wants.  I still try to please, but she sees through it.  In fact, she has worked with my dietitian to communicate they are not looking for a good student.  My dietitian now asks if I did something for me or to  please her.  I am doing a few months of IRT (image rehearsal therapy) and I was given a paper to write imagery of a safe place.  I of course typed it, reviewed it, edited and edited.  She read it and went on and on that it was very, very good.  She hasn't got the message yet :)  It will be nice when the day comes that I understand I don't have to prove myself.  I suspect that is going to be harder because that goes back to guilt and shame.

Lol aww I think thats cool they do that :) it sounds like your therapist really understands you, that's so awesome. I think one thing that helps with stopping it is exhausting yourself. Imma guy, and used to work for the oil industry. Its a place that either holds people up as utter perfection incarnate, or puts them on the floor as a piece of *. Its very weird like that, cutthroat I guess and very narcissistic.

If your face fits, you are more likely to get into the shiny group, but if it doesn't, you're never going to. I was the face doesn't fit type, and it was just so exhausting trying to be shiny, that in the end I just said "* it, I am out of energy for this". It was kind of liberating, I didn't have to try anymore. Its maybe harder when you are in an environment that rewards people pleasing because the good feelings it gives keeps you going back I guess. When the well is utterly dry, it forces you to go and look for sustenance somewhere else I suppose. Its just very very hard to find what that source is (or maybe, recognise when you've found it? Not sure).
« Last Edit: November 14, 2016, 04:03:59 PM by Three Roses »

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woodsgnome

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #23 on: November 14, 2016, 04:38:46 PM »
Biscuits--what a fantastic summary of recovery road (or whatever we choose to call it en route to...something beyond fill in the blanks (recovery, self-discovery, plodding along, etc.). Sometimes it feels nothing like recovery is 'supposed' to. Maybe the 'supposed to' part needs tweaking? Maybe even take the name 'recovery' off the street sign?

I've spent umpteen years on the road myself, always sure I'd find the eureka moment when it would all end. As Biscuits said, "If you feel like you keep twiddling the same face and are getting nowhere, switch tactics, and try to take as many paths at it as you can. And .. beware of panacea, beware of "5 step processes", beware of anything that claims its easy. There really isnt an easy way - there's only the combination that works for you."

I would add another quality worth considering--be ready and willing to be surprised. I had this perfect picture of how it should all go, and so aware of what all the risks of everything was (I'd look those up first!) that I'd freeze in place (well...I am a prototypical freezer in Walker's typology; but no excuse just because I have those characteristics). The trick is to work with what's there and then see (the gut reaction part) if your direction still seems like the right one. And it may be, for quite a while, achingly confusing and it'll feel like 'giving up' time...again. The risks are fraught with the unknown, but what I sense in the confusion is there might just be, must be, something or a combo platter of things that will help me ease out of the pain.

One of my own biggest surprises was finding this forum. As in...what, we're allowed to talk about this...we can...there are others plodding this forsaken path too...? Since then, just that one stumble has opened the mind/spirit to consider that maybe there is help in unforeseen places, perhaps unexpected out-of-the-blue places.

Way before I found the cptsd diagnosis, I used my employment (actor amongst other better-paying gigs, lol) to cover over a lot of the pain; and thought yeah, I'm over what I was feeling. Wrong!!! The Inner Critic, though, also loves that word...so let's try another...Patience. And along with it a way to laugh about it--for us perfectionists, that also works wonders.

It's all edgy, though. The hurdles seem to just get moved further down the track. That's if we over-analyze. I don't want to just 'go with the flow', though. But I do feel the need to press on. My descriptive word for this is...Perseverance .

Back to surprises--if I don't define with certainty what 'recovery' is supposed to be, the best surprise of all would be to get there and not know it, but feel it. And feelings!--oh how I've been so far from them, stuck in numbness for so long.

Thanks again, Biscuits...and Mourning Dove and everyone on this thread, for opening up an important aspect tied to those nefarious 'gut instincts' spoken of. None of us are there, in the sense of feeling complete. Sadly, I guess it doesn't work that way. Not so sadly, we might discover the real 'me' that's always been there; the better 'me' that reflects the truth beyond the lies and setbacks we grew up with.
 
« Last Edit: November 14, 2016, 04:53:50 PM by woodsgnome »

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Three Roses

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #24 on: November 14, 2016, 05:44:33 PM »
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One of my own biggest surprises was finding this forum. As in...what, we're allowed to talk about this...we can...there are others plodding this forsaken path too...? Since then, just that one stumble has opened the mind/spirit to consider that maybe there is help in unforeseen places, perhaps unexpected out-of-the-blue places.

The shock, relief and validation I felt when I discovered there were others like me - thanks woodsgnome

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Manchesterford

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #25 on: December 08, 2016, 01:00:25 PM »
Today I am reminded of how broken and hurting I am.  Its been two years and I just want to feel better. I want the strength to move on from this.

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Riverlad

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #26 on: December 09, 2016, 12:46:51 AM »
A huge thank you to everyone on this thread. Although it makes me cry it is so validating for me to hear of the honesty of your struggles. Sometimes it is crushing for me to converse with people who solidly wear their mask (in my own life). Here on the forum people may be at different stages, sometimes needing support, at others giving it, however to realize I am not alone today is enough. Can't thank you enough.  :thumbup:

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Three Roses

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #27 on: December 09, 2016, 12:52:12 AM »
 :hug:

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Kizzie

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Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #28 on: December 10, 2016, 04:27:15 PM »
....and another one  :hug:

Re: thread for people who are not recovering
« Reply #29 on: December 10, 2016, 08:30:25 PM »
 Its hard for me to feel like I'm offering support when I don't often get support or I feel like anything that I might say is grossly inadequate or sounds shallow so though I've read many posts I may only lurk around without responding.

I appreciate this thread. Reading it helped me feel a little better, which I've been working on all morning (trying to make myself feel like myself again and not just a jumbled mess). Reading everyone's comments about how they're at different places and seeing people who might be close to my place in trying to healing helped stop the topple I've been in.