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I'm so sick of therapy... Why can't I ever get anything useful out of it? Can anyone explain any way they've benefitted? Ideally something not involving CBT or distorted thoughts?

ive seen my current therapist three sessions... Not a lot, I know, but so far she's just said the same things over and over... Therapy probably won't help my mood, just how I cope with it; basically that I'll be miserable no matter what but I should get things done anyway even though I'll hate it. That I can't wait to feel better to do things. Lower my goals and expectations. 

None of this helps me actually get anything done. I used to think that if I could make a dent in my disgusting house, check some things off my overwhelming to do list, play more with my 4 year old, any of the things I avoid that rack me with guilt, that I'd feel a little better, less like I'm wasting my life, and less utterly bored. But I'm not so sure... She's right that when I get things done (on the rare occasions that happens) that I don't feel better, no sense of accomplishment, no building of motivation. 

But by and large I still can't get my ass off the couch, and why would I if nothing I get done helps? Or even if it does, 95% of the time I still don't know how to just get up and do it. I think about trying to do something, then burst into tears because I just can't. 

So nothing she says helps at all. Yet another crappy therapist? Half the time she just watches me cry because I don't know what to say in therapy. I think she just doesn't know how to help me. Yet my pdoc keeps insisting therapy will help me, everyone says it. Ugh just don't know what to do.

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The only therapy I've had is talk therapy.  No CBT/DBT.

Have you told your tdoc you feel this way towards therapy with her?  Maybe she thinks everything is ok, and doesn't realize that it isn't. 

Maybe you both aren't on the same wavelength.  She might not realize she isn't helping.

 

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I think I've said as much... I feel like she expects more from me, like specific things that bother me but all I can say is "I'm bored to tears and miserable." She just stares at me like that's not enough to go on... I try to explain its still hard for me to get things done and she just repeats the same stuff. I don't know what else to say, I feel like an hour is too long... Just not much else to say besides I feel like shit.

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Have you tried going in with a list of things you'd like to be able to do? Even if they're small things, like taking a shower (which I have issues with regularly). Then maybe you can tackle each individual thing on its own? Or maybe the list would give her a more holistic view of what problems you're having? I really like lists, and they've helped me communicate with doctors when all I could do is sit there blubbering. 

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You need to be up front that this therapist is not helping you. You are, after all paying for this service so there is no need to put it gently or spare her feelings. There is rude and there is blunt, you want blunt. Own your feelings, ie don't say "you make me feel bad", better is "I feel bad when you do this."

Edited by notloki
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22 hours ago, heilmania said:

Have you tried going in with a list of things you'd like to be able to do? Even if they're small things, like taking a shower (which I have issues with regularly). Then maybe you can tackle each individual thing on its own? Or maybe the list would give her a more holistic view of what problems you're having? I really like lists, and they've helped me communicate with doctors when all I could do is sit there blubbering. 

It's basically the same reason for everything I avoid... I don't feel like it, I'm too tired and too depressed. And she knows that, she basically says do it anyway.

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17 hours ago, notloki said:

You need to be up front that this therapist is not helping you. You are, after all paying for this service so there is no need to put it gently or spare her feelings. There is rude and there is blunt, you want blunt. Own your feelings, ie don't say "you make me feel bad", better is "I feel bad when you do this."

I've basically said I don't know how to do what she's asking me, but maybe I do need to clarify what the goal really is. I honestly don't know. I thought it was to feel better (the "mood part" she says) but she's trying to help me function I guess... But I want to feel better! I just don't see how I can maintain making myself MORE miserable by "functioning" when I pretty much can't do it. Maybe is an exercise in acceptance... I just don't know if or how that's helpful.

just frustrated... Almost finished TMS, in therapy, and tapering up on Lamictal (again), I feel like I'm hitting this as hard as I can and nothing helps :(

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I used to think I was close... I guess I probably am a little bit better than a month ago, but sadly it doesn't feel much better, it's like my perspective is skewed. I'm still functional, barely... A little break from it all sounds great but I have two young kids at home and no one else to watch them so it's not even a possibility. Right now I'm fully invested in these treatments, I'm just scared of getting to the point when they should kick in (which in the case of TMS should have been by now) because I'm afraid failing all this will be a crushing blow... I feel like I'm running a marathon, I just can't keep going like this forever, if I don't get help soon I'm gonna crash and then what?

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If you don't like your therapist after 3 sessions, get another one. If you try three therapists and don't like any of them--and you feel bored and disliking if people in general at the moment, then stick with that last one for a minimum of 3 months to see if you can start to see any shift in you: your mood, your functioning, your habits, etc.

Definitely come up with goals for therapy! Otherwise, what's the point? Your therapist should be helping you with this! Write down all things about your mood, your habits, your health, diet, life, etc. that you wish were different and then circle the top three that your mind keeps going back to the most. Those are the ones you want to focus on. (Or, they are the ones your subconscious wants to focus on.) Those can be the basis of your therapeutic goals. I'll take a guess here: You want your aching sadness and guilt to lift (ie you'd love to feel joy and desire again), you want to have the energy and motivation to move and get things done (to clean your house, go on a walk, prepare food besides cereal, and be present with your kids again), you want to connect with friends. Those are just examples. Those are some of my own goals. I have accomplished some of them. And I do feel better for it!

You do have hopes and dreams, otherwise you would not have written this post. Remember to focus on that. That is YOU talking, pushing past what your Depression would say if you lied back down and let it have its way. I absolutely agree that this feels like running a marathon. It is f'ing exhausting! 

I really wish your therapist had not told you that your mood was not going to shift as the result of therapy. It is not true. The combination of therapy and medications is FAR more effective at alleviating depression than either one alone.

Other thoughts: In the worst episodes of my depression, sometimes my goals were broken down to what I could accomplish in the next 5 minutes. I had to figure out a way to get out of bed in the morning. Otherwise it was going to be Groundhog Day every day. I focused on what would motivate me enough to help me sit up and put my feet over the side of the bed. Usually, it was that I had to pee. Ha! Then, I figured out that I like checking Facebook first thing and if I do that for 5-10 min, I wake up enough and feel slightly better enough that I will get out of bed. I also learned that as painful as it was to drag myself out on a walk, it helped me tremendously if I listened to podcasts or audible books--and the simple act of walking for even 20-30 minutes was enough to make me feel slightly better. Which was better than nothing at all.

my favorite recent book: "Get Me Out of Here" is a woman's memoir of she worked her way through severe depression and borderline personality disorder. I particularly liked her accounts of how she interacted with her therapist and how that shifted her thinking--and her mood.

my am I chatty this morning

I'm also wondering what your reaction was to the SSRI meds you are no longer taking

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As far as goals... I want to feel better! I want to stop sitting on the couch and crying everyday... I could be more specific, like play with my kids more, keep a cleaner house, eat healthier... But it all goes back to the same underlying problem, I don't FEEL like doing anything... It's a motivation and mental stimulation issue. I'm too sad to do anything. And tired. But I think I've also realized... I thought that being more productive would make me feel better, but I don't think it does... Or not much. Some days aren't so bad and I get some stuff done... I still feel like crap. So I don't know what my goals are besides being happier and she basically told me she can't help my mood and nothing I can do will help it either, that meds/TMS has to do that. I guess right there I gotta call bullshit and should probably find another therapist but who knows.

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Just now, climber47 said:

As far as goals... I want to feel better! I want to stop sitting on the couch and crying everyday... I could be more specific, like play with my kids more, keep a cleaner house, eat healthier... But it all goes back to the same underlying problem, I don't FEEL like doing anything... It's a motivation and mental stimulation issue. I'm too sad to do anything. And tired. But I think I've also realized... I thought that being more productive would make me feel better, but I don't think it does... Or not much. Some days aren't so bad and I get some stuff done... I still feel like crap. So I don't know what my goals are besides being happier and she basically told me she can't help my mood and nothing I can do will help it either, that meds/TMS has to do that. I guess right there I gotta call bullshit and should probably find another therapist but who knows.

 

Maybe by listing the things you used to be able to do and would like to be able to do again, your pdoc will get the idea. Going in and saying "I feel sad all the time" is so general (no offense!!!) that they may not "get it", you know?

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Everybody is different. What works for one or a group may not work for another. 

I definitely understand where you are coming from, because I honestly couldn't find any real value in therapy. I've been nearly my whole life and, just the other day, we hit on something: i think too much about how I should feel about something instead telling the therapist or myself how I actually feel. That feel great and cathartic. Maybe that could be issue for you, too? idk

I wish you the best of luck in finding the therapist you deserve. 

There are some resources that are just a Google search away that can show you therapist in your area and their personal philosophy on approaching the therapeutic process....

Maybe you can find one that you would think would be a good match. I hope you do. 

 

Edited by squideyes
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On 8/23/2016 at 11:23 AM, climber47 said:

I think I've said as much... I feel like she expects more from me, like specific things that bother me but all I can say is "I'm bored to tears and miserable." She just stares at me like that's not enough to go on... I try to explain its still hard for me to get things done and she just repeats the same stuff. I don't know what else to say, I feel like an hour is too long... Just not much else to say besides I feel like shit.

Yes! This is me with my therapist! I like her well enough, but I'm not accomplishing anything. I want to change, but I don't know what or how. She agrees that I'm in a tough place, and-- that's all. I don't know what else to do. :-\

I'm sorry you're feeling this way. 

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