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Is this worth telling my therapist? (tw)


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Not sure if this really belongs here, apologies if not... I've never read or posted in this thread before because I don't SI.

A little background:

When I was growing up, I used to hit myself in the head, walk around with rocks in my shoes (to punish myself), snap elastics on my wrist to hurt myself, etc. I also would often fantasize of killing myself, most commonly either by jumping off the ferry into the ocean or stabbing myself through the heart with a knife (drama, I know, haha).

A few times I came very close to jumping off the ferry, and often I would sneak knives into my bedroom and experiment or "rehearse" killing myself... run the blade lightly along my arms to feel the sharpness, poke it into my chest to see if I could easily stab myself. I would try out different types of knives to see if I could find an ideal one.

All to say: I never actually cut myself or otherwise tried to hurt/kill myself, so I guess it was pretty harmless. I'm not sure if this is something most kids go through? I was a very anxious/depressed kid at times, but I had a good childhood.

Finally arriving at the point:

Almost six years ago, I was sexually assaulted by a bunch of strangers. I'm currently doing prolonged exposure therapy for this/the resulting ptsd, and lately I cannot stop thinking about walking over to the kitchen, getting a knife and cutting myself/running the knife over my skin. However, I am definitely not going to... it's just a persistent, very tempting thought.

Anyway, my question is this: are these thoughts cause for concern/significant, and if I were to tell my psychologist this when she asks how I am, do you think this would matter? Would it be pointless or unwise to bring up? I am mostly leaning toward not saying anything because I don't want to seem dramatic or cause a freak out... but I also want to be open/honest about how I'm really doing. I am one of those who tends to just say, "I'm fine" and leave it at that.

Edited by seasaltsally
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I think that it's worth mentioning. I don't think that most children dream about being dead, or about ways to kill themselves (however dramatic or not). I suspect that if you need to ask us if it's worth mentioning then it is worth mentioning (especially if you're one who tends to lean towards showing your functional side).

I've had intrusive thoughts about sharps too, and they usually end up having a negative impact on my mental health overall. They're sort of a barometer for me, because I can't often tell how I'm doing or what I'm feeling, but I can identify that SI is an intrusive thought. It took talking about it with Tdoc for me to figure that out, which is why I think that it's worth mentioning.

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I'd agree with WinterRosie that makes sense.  I completely get how something can be normal for you because it's all you experienced...I was likely depressed in high school and only recognize that looking back on it, for example, because I stayed relatively on top of things academically.  I don't think this sort of thought pattern or emotional state falls within the range of typical though and I don't think you would get dismissed as overexaggerating things.  

I think the fact that it's currently happening and may be in response to the exposure therapy also makes it worth mentioning.  Really, worst case scenario is your therapist tells you to keep an eye on it and may check in specifically on it periodically.  I'm not sure it's very likely, but I can't really see something worse happening.

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9 hours ago, WinterRosie said:

They're sort of a barometer for me, because I can't often tell how I'm doing or what I'm feeling, but I can identify that SI is an intrusive thought. It took talking about it with Tdoc for me to figure that out, which is why I think that it's worth mentioning.

Hey Rosie :) Thanks so much for your reply... what you said here really resonated with me. My T is always asking me to rate how I feel on a scale from 1 to 10 (with no set definition for the numbers) and honestly I never really know what to say. It's hard to know how I feel, I'm not sure why. It just is.

Perhaps stuff like this will help me describe how I am in general, outside of the 1-10 scale. I want to be more engaged and not just say 'I'm fine' when asked, but it's hard to know what to say. I kind of don't feel anything a lot of the time. I guess I will mention it.

 

 

8 hours ago, dancesintherain said:

I think the fact that it's currently happening and may be in response to the exposure therapy also makes it worth mentioning.  Really, worst case scenario is your therapist tells you to keep an eye on it and may check in specifically on it periodically.  I'm not sure it's very likely, but I can't really see something worse happening.

Good point... I suppose I should mention it since it might be an effect of the exposure therapy. Part of me is worried that it will become A Thing if I admit to it, but maybe that's my anxiety talking. What you say makes sense - that it might just become something to periodically check in on. Thanks so much for your thoughts.

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  • 1 month later...

You think you're not going to do it, and "it's just a tempting thought," until one day you actually do it. I'm not sure about your situation since we're obviously different people, but one day when I was 15 I dropped a glass cup on the floor and it shattered. My mother yelled at me, and I was already having a bad day so I impulsively grabbed a piece of glass and put it in my pocket(I later used the shard of glass to self harm for my first time). I'm not sure if you struggle with impulsivity or not, but you should always consider that doing things you wouldn't think you'd do can still happen. You should talk to your therapist, because utilizing your resources is extremely important in therapy. 

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