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Pre-appointment anxiety


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Every time I have an appointment with my therapist I get anxiety. It can start an hour, a day, a week beforehand. Sometimes it's just about something thats difficult for me to talk about, sometimes I feel like Im letting her down or Im not working hard enough, not sticking to my treatment plan, and sometimes its about nothing at all. Is this pretty typical? Sometimes I think I have anxiety bordering on paranoia. Anyone else feel this way before appointments?

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Yeah. I always got nervous before seeing t-doc. I can't pin-point it, really. Possibly fear of having to bring up something I didn't want to, or likely being judged was a huge worry. Which is dumb because they likely don't do that. Having to admit to something I didn't want to.

 

I think therapy is scary in general. I have anxiety, it got worse right before appointments. 

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Eh, I'm sure they expect some people to cry, I mean, it's therapy! That being said, I've cried and felt SOO dumb for it and embarrassed, sigh. I try to remember that, hey! This is their JOB! They probably hear FAR crazier shit than the shit I'm going to be talking about, so . . . some kind of comfort there, I suppose.

 

I got over it enough, but not all the way. I was in therapy for three years, so. . . maybe I should have brought that up! Maybe t-doc would have helped me feel better, re-assure me and all that. An idea, if you're not uncomfortable with bringing it up.

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I often get anxiety before therapy and I've had a couple full blown panic attacks after leaving. I've been seeing my psychologist for a year now.

When I'm anxious going into sessions I let her know right away and we talk it out until I feel comfortable. It was actually such a good feeling to dismiss the anxieties. I think being as honest as possible about it will help you.

She is not going to judge you for crying; it's normal! I'm sure half the patients she sees in a day cry. It's also better you let out those emotions in a safe environment.

And hey if it makes you feel better, once I dissociated for the full hour of our session and stared at a wall. I joked about it and we had a good laugh the next week!

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I used to get nervous - probably for the entire first year or so (now it's been ten years with the same person).    I also still cry at least every other appointment.    I think therapists are trained to expect these behaviors and/or feelings from clients.  

 

As far as "letting her down" or "not working hard enough"  remember these are YOUR therapy sessions;  you shouldn't be overly concerned with what your therapist feels  or thinks about being let down, or whether she feels you're working hard enough.  Is this something you could ask her?  Or is this too hard?  I understand if it is.

 

I hope you feel less anxious over time.  I bet you will!   Good luck.  

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I have the same fears of not meeting my tdoc's expectations.  Flameless has a really good point--these are your sessions to do with what you want.  I think its important to ask yourself what you want to be achieving and then you can ask your tdoc what he/she thinks of that.

 

But, I basically think therapy is sort of a nerve-wracking experience b/c you are, afterall, talking about things that are painful.

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I have this. It used to be terrible. From about three or four days before the appointment I'd get awfully scared and it would not go away.

I ended up telling her, and we worked towards helping me feel more comfortable about being there, and lead-up, and such things. It helped to reduce it, and it went away for a little while. Now it's back, but not as badly as before.

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I've had the same problem (using stupid ways to deal with it, like alcohol or anything to make the anxiety go away: not a good idea, it only makes the next session harder. And also the actual session.) So I would also say that talking about it is the best option, so you can find healthy ways to deal with the anxiety and reduce it.

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Thank you guys :) Im usually fine once I actually get to the appointment but I just get so worked up sometimes. I have been with this therapist for about a year and a half so its starting to get easier. My last session I was 20 minutes late and showed up in my pajamas but Im trying to tell myself its about being there. Ive been in therapy as far back as I can remember and Ive never been 100% honest with any doc, either about my drug and alcohol use, my family, my eating etc. But for the first time Im being 100% up front and I think thats the hardest part. Im really putting myself out there this time... Yikes.

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