Thursday, August 18, 2005

Therapy progress

Today’s session with V was emotionally draining. We talked about emotions – we’ve been talking about emotions and emotional myths for a while now. It feels like such unfamiliar and dangerous territory. I guess I don’t allow myself to feel much, and when caught in an intense moment, I then frantically try to dump the feeling as quickly as I can. Sometimes dysfunctionally, and sometimes more skilfully. But that’s a crap shoot for now.

I told V that I felt that all those times I dealt with situations skilfully were for her. I wasn’t doing it for me, so much as I did it because I know she doesn’t want me cut/OD/act out, and so I try something different. I guess I’m afraid that once she’s gone, for whatever reason, I won’t have a reason to be functional anymore. She said that was ok for now. But that eventually, she believed I would do it more for myself. That was our goal, anyway. It made me feel a bit better, hearing that. For how long, I don’t know. We just don’t have such guarantees in life.

I guess I can accept that.

As an example for how thought processes actually affects our behaviour, we looked at the time I jumped off the building last year. It’s hard to review those thoughts and feelings I had at that moment. I still don’t know if I would have reacted differently if the same events happened all over again. I can sort of see how my thoughts had led me inevitably down that path of self destruction. I can still almost taste the desperation and panic I felt at that time. God, it still hurts….. But as far as being able to process the events more skilfully so that I held off from succumbing to my impulse, well, I think maybe I am more able to do that today than I was a year ago…. At least I like to think that.

Does that mean DBT is making a difference to my life?

I like to think so….. Well, at least I hope so.

10 comments: said...

god, i feel the same way. i feel like the only reason i'm compliant in therapy is because i don't want to lose my therapist. he told me today that we can't work together if i keep making plans or taking actions to hurt myself. he said that he couldn't work with me if i couldn't commit to staying safe, because he couldn't be honest with me if he had to be concerned that i'd hurt myself if something he said upset me. he's very good, isn't he. and then he said that he wasn't a good therapist for me if working with him made me want to hurt myself. he got me on that one too. oh he's so frustrating. he turns the tables on me all the time. but i like it too, the way he challenges my way of thinking and uses my own words and values to point out the faultiness of my thoughts. i like the way he thinks. he's so quick. therapy is an amazing process isn't it. dynamic.

Yuki said...

Polar Bear, It sounds like you are making great strides forward!!!! Good for you!!!!! I'm so proud of you!!!! I can totally see a change already!!! Yeah!!!! You're doing really well!!! Good job!!!! It's draining. But the rewards you reap will be much greater!!! Yeah!! You're recovering!

Yuki said...

Tinka, Yeah, your therapist doesn't sound very compassionate. If you're BPD, then he's definitely not compatible. In LA, I went to Maria Smith and she was awesome. I hope you find the right person. (I couldn't comment on your blog.) Stay safe!

The Mass Defective said...

Sounds like learning the DBT skills is helping you. I'm proud of you, but more importantly, I hope you're proud of yourself. Take care of you!

Barb said...

Are you in a DBT program? I have yet to pick up the phone and schedule an in-take interview.

I've heard nothing but positive things from people who have been through DBT, though. I hope it's helping.

borderline savvy said...

I definitely see DBT working in your life. I can see it not only in your outlook changes over the past year or even 6 months, but also when you talk to me and remind me of DBT skills. You're doing a terrific job, Polar Bear! It sounds as if there is some marked improvement in how you process your emotions, and I'm betting that if the same circumstances were to come up again, given all you've learned and how much you've grown, that you wouldn't jump. Did you tell her you are going to go to the DBT group? I hope you are still planning to. It has helped me tremendously. Right now I'm working on radical acceptance of not getting the job, and I know that that will help me enormously.

I'm so proud of you!

JC said...

I give you props for even doing the therapy thing. Good on you! Hope that things continue to go better.

Anonymous said...

You sound like your making a lot of progress. Im so glad its helping you.
I hope things are o.k between us. I havnt heard from you in awhile.

Take care

Polar Bear said...

I'm glad you've got a good therapist. Yes, I think it's helpful when he challenges you like that. I do agree with him - you have to be committed to therapy. Otherwise it won't help you.

Thanks, Yuki.

It's hard for me to be proud of myself, actually. But I'm working on that too :)

I hope you give it a try, Barb. I've been working on it with my therapist for a year now, and I hope to join the skills group in October.

You know Suzanne, I also do see changes in you since you started DBT, and that wasn't so long ago! I think it's a great programme. I've told V I want to join the group, so she is writing me a referal for the October group :)

Thanks, JC.

Of course things are ok between us. Sorry Billy, I've been busy lately. I'll pop by soon!

Polar Bear

Anonymous said...

No No, dont apologies. Theres nothing to apologize for. Its just another one of my paranoid delusions. Please forget I said anything.