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If you have had councilling have you found it helpfull ?

(24 Posts)
Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 09:00:07

I started councilling yesterday. I've been suffering with Axiety for a while and I thought it was all centered around having my son really early but the counciller dredged up so much stuff I have not thought about in years but have not been able to stop thinking about it since and had several nightmares last night.

Is this normal ?

colditz Tue 29-Sep-09 09:03:19

Yes. And this is very normal, the dredging.

Imagine something disgusting is poisoning the well. YOu have to dredge it out but for the short term, disturbing it will make the well worse ... in the long term, you need to get rid of the source of poison.

GooseyLoosey Tue 29-Sep-09 09:11:24

I really didn't find it helpful - as you say it made me think of too much stuff, most of which I felt was not really relevant to my anxiety. It made me more of a mess rather than less. I suspect this kind of thing very much depends on the person doing the councilling and what your relationship is like with them. I didn't like the woman I saw at all. I would try it again if I were you but be aware that it might not be the right solution for you.

monkeysavingexpertdotcom Tue 29-Sep-09 09:13:10

Can be useful - CBT (short, doesn't go too much into the past but tries to change your thinking patterns, so I believe) can be good for anxiety. IMHO.

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 09:17:12

I am sure that what she dredged up is completly relevant to how i feel i just didnt realise that it would be iykwim.

At the beginning of the session she said it was going to be CBT then at the end said it'd be 'person centered' whatever that means.

thirtysomething Tue 29-Sep-09 09:17:53

It's normal to feel worse before you feel better. You are only drudgding up stuff that's in you anyway - so if it doesn't get brought up and dealt with it just festers there sub-consciously and impacts you anyway....

Colditz has described the process really well....it's definitely worth sticking with as in the long-run you will accept/acknowledge your past and feel able to choose the impact it has on your life or choose how you want your life to be. However it could also be that you're just not quite ready to face this stuff right now ? I think timing is crucial in counselling as you need to be ready to do the self-awareness work and commit to the process.

Do you mind me asking what sort of counsellor you are seeing? (Person-Centred, psychodynamic, CBT etc?)

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 09:27:53

All this stuff (really bad school bullying) is 15 years and more old. I have always known it has affected me in some ways, my self esteem isn't great and i run away from things but i didnt think it'd be making me anxious all these years later.

I guess it is a combination of things.

The poisoned well thing is a good way to think about it, i have never felt quite normal.

monkeysavingexpertdotcom Tue 29-Sep-09 09:33:58

The two types of counselling are very different - is she using both?
Yes quite normal to feel worse before feeling better. All the c**p has to come out and it's painful - which is why lots of people don't do it.

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 09:40:59

I dont know. She asked me at the beginning of the session if i knew what CBT was and then explained it to me and then at the end of the session, after the dredging she said she thought a person centered approach woud be better suited to me.

thirtysomething Tue 29-Sep-09 10:04:30

The person-centred approach will be better for longer-term work than CBT as CBT focuses on definable goals in the short-term.Are you getting it on the NHS?

MadameOvary Tue 29-Sep-09 10:11:08

Your counsellor should be aware of the effect that this could have and be able to support your through it. I know this is easier said than done though, as you only have a small amount of time with her, and are then left thinking about it.

I thought of it as stirring up long-settled mud when cleaning out a pond. Its messy and you cant see a damn thing, but the end result is usually an improvement. Not as good as the poisoned well analogy though!

I am a big fan of counselling/therapy. I think the mind needs attention just as the body does sometimes. But you need support as well while you are going through it as it is difficult.

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 10:11:11

yeah 8 sessions apparently. I've got to go every 2 weeks.

MadameOvary Tue 29-Sep-09 10:12:53

Also remember that you are very brave to be asking for this sort of help, and be kind to yourself. smile

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 10:15:37

I think last night i could have done with a really good talk and my DF isn't much of a talker. The scenes of torture from last nights waking the dead inspied me to try and get it out, so i told him i had had cigarettes put out on my face when i was 14..he looked utterly horrified said "really" and then went back to his Iphone hmm

I guess it is had to talk about, I have not really spoken about it before.

MadameOvary Tue 29-Sep-09 10:18:55

Arsed sad

I'm sorry you're not getting the support you need.
CAT me if you want. Do you have any RL friends you can talk to?

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 10:23:58

Thank MO I realy appreciate that

I do have friends but have never talked to any of them about it, none of my friends now knew me then as i moved away as soon as i could. I dont think they would be interested in it realy, it was so long ago.

I usually go to my parents but i dont think they know the extent of it all and they would blame themselves.

Yesterdays session really made me consider how terrified I had been at the time. I mean, I have always been aware that i was bullied but i had complelty 'forgotten' the feeling of fear and constant anxiety.

monkeysavingexpertdotcom Tue 29-Sep-09 10:28:41

What thirty-something said.
You may need more than eight sessions of person-centred, though - but I'm not a counsellor, I just thought it was a longer process primarily because of the dredging. Very sorry about what you went through.

MadameOvary Tue 29-Sep-09 10:46:53

I would say you would need more sessions too. Bullying can really destroy a person's self-esteem, and the damage done at a young age needs careful repair. It can be a long process but you've taken the first step which is brilliant.

Sadly the mind is not good at self-healing, and better at denial in order to "protect" us as adults. A good counsellor should be able to work through this.

Remember that whatever you feel is completely normal and doesn't make you weak/sick/weird etc. It would be odd if you didn't feel the way you do given what you've been through.

Dont hesitate to ask what is available beyond the sessions you have been offered, because if you do find the process beneficial there could be more that could help.

tammybear Tue 29-Sep-09 11:02:01

I agree with the others that you would need more sessions. I went to counselling for two years. At first I was very quiet and found it very difficult to bring up my past. I never had anyone to talk to when I was younger so I just hid all my worries and painful memories away. It was the first time I spoke about stuff like that, stuff going back 18 years, and though at first it does make you feel worse like others say, it does get better.

When I first tried talking to my DP about stuff, he didn't know how to react to it, and his initial reaction was "you're overexaggerating". That was really hurtful and upsetting, but when I calmed down, and explained to him what this has all done to me, he has tried his best to really listen and be more supportive.

I stopped counselling about a month ago. I feel much better now, I feel I have learnt to open up more and talk about my problems, so I know this will really help now and in the future. So I do highly recommend it. Before I left, counsellor showed me the difference to how I was when I first started to when I left, from a really shy, quiet and reserved person to a really animated and positive person. But I think it also helped that I got on well with my counsellor. Hope that helps.

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 11:22:38

Thanks Tammy

The counciller did say that if i needed any more then it was at her discrection so i guess we will have to see.

MadameOvary Tue 29-Sep-09 11:32:39

Thats great. Please try to be as honest as you can to her, because if you tell her that the sessions are helping (if they are) and she sees that you are open to the process (many are not) she will have more reason to grant you extra sessions.

Arsed Tue 29-Sep-09 11:40:29

Thanks for your advice madameovary. I do hope they will help. I've not felt to bad recently but tend to crash when i am going though stress and went though a really bad patch in apr, may and june with panic attacks and health anxiety. I thought it was directly as a result of the stress i suffered when my ds arrived but i think that probably it has been going on for years.

Thinking about it, i've done it before, i ran away from a great job because i coudn't cope with the stress.

I think this time has been worse as i have had to face up to it all. I couldnt run away from my children.

MadameOvary Tue 29-Sep-09 11:56:45

You are doing absolutely the right thing.
With effective counselling you will look back as a happier healthier person and think "Wow, was that me?"
Its a long process but it is time invested in your mental well-being so that you are able to be a happier person. It can give you greater insights into what makes you who you are (IYSWIM). Your DC will benefit too smile

twoisplenty Tue 29-Sep-09 13:39:29

Very interesting thread. I can't give an opinion as to therapy being helpful because I have only had 9 sessions, and I am definitely in the middle of the stirred up well full of yuck! But I do want to get better, I don't want to carry on being the stressed unhappy person I currently am.

So I would say that, if you felt like that on the very first session, then you must have a lot to talk about and get rid of those demons holding you back. And yes, it does take courage, but it is an interesting process as well, you know, plenty of "oh, I see!" moments with the counsellor. Good luck.

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