How do you come to terms?


How do you come to terms that the people who are supposed to take care of you, to love you, to protect you, abandoned you?

I’ve carried this anger, rage, hostility, hurt, sadness, disappointment all my life. I’ve attended numerous groups, coping with change, anger, depression and anxiety, body image, building compassion, I’m sure there are more, but I can’t remember them at this moment.

Until yesterday when I started another new group. A person who I’d never met before, reminded me of my family of origin. The way she looked, her mannerisms, even similar way of what she wore. In all my time of doing group therapy, this is the first time this has happened. I can’t help but feel it is the universe (for those of you who are of spirit belief such as myself) suggesting that it is time for me to start to deal with my feelings, so I can put this to rest and truly work on healing.

Feelings, they scare me. The idea of digging deep within myself, and discussing what really hurts, followed by whatever comes up, whether it be tears, fear, gut wrenching heartache, makes me fear that if my emotions are allowed to come to the surface and I am vulnerable, that those emotions will not stop, and that I will be left with the clean up, however that looks.

We talked about this yesterday and I learned that even though I feel this way, this won’t happen. Our bodies go in ebbs and flows. However, I think this is just going to take some time and learning to trust for me to feel safe.

Image result for The universe will tell you

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Bad Reaction


I have had a set back a big one with my eating disorder recovery. I realize its a journey and there will be times when stuff like this happens, yet the difference is now I could see what was causing it, but I didn’t stop it.  I did admit in my eating disorder group what happened without going into detail as I didn’t want to trigger anyone. The facilitator said that its hard when a “wave” happens when we are trying to find a tiny piece of positive to take away from moments that are difficult.

As our session continued we talked about Body Image and all the different ways it affects who we are. I felt very intense emotions. We then went onto to talk about ways to make sure your child has a great body image. I shut down. I just couldn’t give any answers that would be positive because I struggled to even think what a positive body image comment would be.

I left feeling very angry, not wanting to talk to anyone; I just wanted to be alone.

When I got home, I was bitchy, obviously reactive still from our session. I started to work quickly in my garden, clearing my tomato plant leaves that are dead, checking the remaining plants, picking up pine cones and dead branches as well as planting my daffodils for next year. It always feels good when I am left alone in my element.

I guess that is what you would call being compassionate; something I am not very good at. I’m still stuck at the “you deserve it” voice code.

So how does one become compassionate with themselves? How does one accept that what is going on is a moment and that it is ok to go back to things that are old behaviors and are fine to use but not stay in? How is it ok to acknowledge how and what you are feeling, especially if you struggle with expressing your feelings? It’s not easy to put things into perspective, when your emotions are so intense that it is hard to remind yourself that this moment will pass; especially when it goes longer than “a moment”.

I know last night and today I have felt a lot of doubt. My thoughts and feelings definitely have wanted to give up. The one thing that came to mind is that I deserve to feel the way I do and the other was “go ahead, no one is going to know but me”. So you can see how difficult it is when there is no balance.

One of the things I often forget to do is BREATH. When I’m in the moment where I am triggered, I am so engaged with that thought, that breathing is the last thing I think of. I know that it has been suggested that I take a moment and take 3 deep breaths because it will help my mind and body to relax and to calm down.  Now if I can just remember to do that!

I don’t know about you, but I talk to myself; sometimes it is encouraging and empowering; last night/today “not so much”. I haven’t found a positive tool to go to when I talk to myself in a negative way. I don’t like talking to myself in front of a mirror,  I just know that as I learn new and continuing coping skills, I too will learn to love myself.

Bright Lights Home


Last night on Dancing With Stars, yes its a guilty pleasure once in awhile lol, I enjoyed watching Bindi Irwin and Derek Hough performing a contemporary dance to “Every Breath You Take”.  I found myself welling up in tears as Bindi recounted her memories of her father Steve Irwin. Let me tell you from the moment they stepped onto the floor, you could feel the raw honest and innocence being presented.

Half way through their dance, they flowed across the floor to which lights lit up around them and I “got it”, Bindi and Derek were dancing to her dad! I instantly started to cry because I thought of my own dad and how much I have lost without him here and how much I miss him and the significant loss that has impacted me.

Thank you Dancing With the Stars, Bindi and Derek for opening this path for me with the Bright Lights Home.

Bright Lights Home

Get Out!


images (3)I’m  tired of feeling so much anger and rage inside that it spews out like venom.

I’m tired of feeling like I don’t have control even though I am told I can get control.

I’m tired of feeling exhausted from all the crap that has been flying around me the last 3 or 4 days. ENOUGH ALREADY!

I’m tired of feeling the pain and heartache of things I didn’t ask for nor had control of.

I’m tired of feeling short fused, to the point that I want out of my own skin.

GET OUT BORDERLINE PERSONALITY!

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I started to work on trust with my therapist and it brought up some very painful, uncomfortable feelings for me. I realize that if I want to get through to the other side of life, I have to work through this, but to be honest, having an argument, seeing my therapist and my psychiatrist in one day and then today was my eating disorder group, too much has been stirred up.

Plain and simple GET OUT!

Moods

What is Psychotherapy


I’ve had several years of psychotherapy or “talk therapy” and it has helped in various ways. I’m presently involved with trauma therapy (which some will say PTSD) which has been painful but I know that in order to help me process locked emotions that have been within me for a very long time.

Below is an article on the topic.

Psychotherapy is treatment for mental health problems in which a  mental health professional helps you change how you think, feel and behave using methods based on psychological, biological and social theories and research. Research shows that changing one’s thoughts, feelings and behaviours reduces or eliminates symptoms of many mental healthy problems and improves quality of life. Psychotherapy is also used successfully to help people cope with or overcome life problems, such as adjusting to a health issues or overcoming discrimination, bullying or abuse, to name just a few. However, this article focuses only on mental health problems.

Psychotherapy is sometimes referred to as “counselling”, sometimes as “talk therapy” and sometimes simply as “therapy”. While these terms tend to be used interchangeably, the term “counselling” has also been used more broadly to describe supportive conversations between a health professional and the client.  These might focus on regular medication intake, housing issues or helping navigate the health system. These types of counselling, while helpful, would not qualify as psychotherapy because they are not meant to treat mental health problems.

Psychotherapy is one of the best treatments for mental health problems. This statement is supported by 50 years’ worth of research. The question is not if psychotherapy works, but how.

How does psychotherapy work?

Researchers have different views about how and why psychotherapy works. The “active ingredients” in psychotherapy can be broadly grouped into specific and common factors. Knowing about these “active ingredients” can help choose a psychotherapy service that is a good fit for you.

Specific factors

Many researchers say that psychotherapy works because it offers carefully assembled interventions tailored for specific mental health problems. An example of an intervention would be when the therapist teaches the client how to challenge worrying thoughts by comparing them to facts. A different example is when the therapist and the client explore patterns in the client’s relationships across time. Another intervention would be when the therapist teaches the client strategies to become more aware of their emotions.

These interventions are called “specific factors” because they differ from one psychotherapy to another. A “psychotherapy” to another.  A “psychotherapy” is understood here as a group of interventions. Researchers who study specific factors compare different psychotherapies (e.g., cognitive-behavioral therapy, psychodynamic psychotherapy, etc) to each other to find the most effective psychotherapy for a specific mental health problem.

Common Factors

Other psychotherapy researchers believe that therapy works because of “common factors” that are shared across psychotherapies. According to these researchers, most psychotherapies can be helpful for most problems because the effectiveness lies in the art of how psychotherapy is done, not which interventions are used.

An example of common factor is positive, honest relationship between the therapist and the client, who are working toward the same goal. An example of a common factor is a positive, honest relationship between the therapist and the client, who are working toward the same goal. Another common factor is when the therapist and the client develop a shared understanding of the client’s problem and the way it can be changed. Yet another is when the client is given an opportunity to practice and master new skills that help overcome their problem. Research supports the importance of common factors. For example, studies consistently show that a strong therapeutic relationship between the therapist and the client leads to better outcomes in various therapies and problems.

In addition, some researchers have shown that, when some aspects of research design are improved, psychotherapies might not be as different from each other in their effectiveness as those who study “specific factors” believe they are.

How do I choose a psychotherapy that works for me?

Choosing a psychotherapy service can be overwhelming at first. So it can be helpful to use a guide such as some approaches used by therapists. One approach therapists use to decide how to work with a specific client is called evidence-based practice (EBP). EBP specifies three types of information that can help decide on the appropriate psychotherapy: 1) client characteristics 2) research evidence, and 3) therapist’s clinical expertise. EBP has been recommended by the American and Canadian psychological associations and is also used in the field of medicine, where is originated. Although the principles of the EBP were designed to help clinicians, they can also be useful for clients who are deciding on the best psychotherapy service to meet their needs.

Here are some therapist and client characteristics that, according to research, affect outcomes in psychotherapy. You might want to consider them when choosing a psychotherapy service that meets your needs.

The therapist

Research suggests that the person who is delivering therapy has an impact on the treatment’s success. Most effective therapists are empathic, accepting genuine, able to speak with you directly about any misunderstandings that happen between the two of you and able to see strengths in your cultural worldview. They are also highly skilled, but not rigid, in the therapies that they provide. They will challenge you or invite you to step outside your comfort zone.

You can monitor to see whether your therapist has these qualities. If you are not “clicking” with your therapist, it can be very helpful for both of you to have a conversation about this.

The client

You, as the client, are the most important ingredient of change in psychotherapy. You are the one who does most of the work. Studies show that clients with better outcomes understand their problems similarly to the way their therapist views them, but are also open to changing these understandings. They are motivated and have optimistic but not idealistic expectations toward therapy (unless they have depression, because negative expectations are part of the disorder).

Reviewing your attitudes toward psychotherapy can help you assess if this is a good treatment for you.

Finding a “fit” – It’s worth making an effort

Psychotherapies and therapists vary in their styles of work — and your preferences in how you would like to work matter. You might meet with several therapists before you find a good fit.  A good fit means that you feel respected and supported by your therapist and ‘buy into’ the psychotherapy approach enough to work hard and step outside your comfort zone. You might decide to choose a psychotherapy that was successfully studied with a problem like yours.

While choosing a service might not be easy, it is worth the effort — psychotherapy is, after all, one of the most effective treatments available for mental health problems. That is particularly true when you find a good combination of specific and common factors that match your needs.

Written by Karolina Rozworska, MA

I must admit, I found this article very interesting as I never had any of this information on my journey to finding a therapist.

He’s Dead …. next


I heard those words, just like that, for the first time in my life. It hit me hard.

I’ve always said my father passed away, I guess it just sounded softer than “he’s dead”. My last couple of blog entries have been about loyalty and betrayal. I even had a moment of tears well up, when asked what was I feeling, I said that I was feeling tired, tired of the confusion, tired of feeling sad, hurt, angry and any other emotion that doesn’t come out very often.

It’s hard to see that the only person I would be betraying is myself, I’ve always felt the complete opposite.

I’m working on accepting what was said to me and I know that at some point, I will go forward for me.

Borderline Personality Disorder and Transference


A couple of days ago I posted an entry called “Loyalty”. https://sexyonthedarkside.wordpress.com/2015/09/08/loyalty/ … if you haven’t had a chance to read it already.

I met with my therapist today as I really needed to do some inner core work on my confusion surrounding my loyalties and doing things that I would enjoy, but if I did, I feel like I am betraying them/that.

During my hour long session, I was realized that my past with my father’s death, being caught in the middle with my grandparents and my mother and the reality that deep down I am afraid that I am a failure to my core belief emotionally. I also believe I am not good enough. This is classic emotional regulation issues with people who have Borderline Personality Disorder.

Moving forward to present day, I was to begin a free week of martial arts, to see if I would like the style of the art. I froze and didn’t go. The anxiety and fear set in and caused my inner critic to make the decision for me because I believed I would be letting my former team mates down and that I wouldn’t be good enough at the new school.

I know, it doesn’t make sense to the one reading this, but this has been my way of thinking all my life trouble is, what I experienced as a child, doesn’t fit with my decisions as an adult.  The challenge now is to challenge those thoughts by stopping what I am doing and attempt to look outside of myself and really ask myself if what I am thinking truly makes sense. If it does, carry on; if it doesn’t, ask why.

Blogging, I will be doing this a lot more as it helps me to process (as I am right now).  I also want the ability to read what I have written to see if I can point out too myself my thoughts and what my emotions are causing me to react a certain way.  This is not going to be an easy process, after all I’ve had over 40 years of living with thoughts that I thought were “normal” and “rational”. Now, as I am doing this inner work, as hard as it is to face my demons, my therapist has assured me that what I am doing now, will be a whole lot easier than a lot of things I have had to deal with.

She knows I will hold to it!