How to get Dr. Irene's Advice: Look here!

Ask The Doc Board

The CatBox Archives

 

(Archives)

4/14 Interactive Board: Codependent Partners

3/23 Interactive Board: He's Changing... I'm Not...

3/1 Interactive Board: D/s Lifestyle

1/14 Interactive Board: My Purrrfect Husband

12/12 Interactive Board: What if He Could Have Changed?

10/23 Interactive Board: Quandary Revisited

8/24 Interactive Board: Quandary! What's Going On?

7/20: Dr. Irene on cognitive behavior therapy and mindfulness

6/12 Interactive Board: Unintentional Abuse

11/7 Interactive Board: Is This Abusive?

12/29 Interactive Board: There Goes the Wife...

11/4 Interactive Board: A New Me!

10/8 Interactive Board: Seeming Impossibility

9/8 Interactive Board: My Ex MisTreats Our Son

5/1 Interactive Board: I feel Dead - Towards Him

4/26 Interactive Board: Why is This So Hard?

4/19 Interactive Board: I Lost My Love...

4/7 Interactive Board: Too Guilty!

Doc@DrIrene.com

Comments for Choosing a Therapist & Emotions

Comments for Choosing A Therapist & Emotions

Material posted here is intended for educational purposes only, and must not be considered a substitute for informed advice from your own health care provider.

Courtesy of Dr. Irene Matiatos   Copyrightę 2000. The material on this website may be distributed freely for non-commercial or educational purposes provided that author credit is given. For commercial distribution, please contact the author at Doc@drirene.com

B1: Submit

S1

Hi Char and Dr. Irene!

Just wanted to say something that I learned about emotions: our problem is many times that we "react" (un controlled response) instead of really feeling our emotions, and CHOOSING to act upon some decision. When it feels yucky, we react with our old ways, instead of saying, to ourselves and others: this felt yucky. I did not like that. What can I do now? And then decide: maybe leave, maybe say to the other, that I didn't like that, etc. :)

A therapist can help a lot, if when you talk with her/him and tell your stories and emotions, he/she gives them a name and reason. "Here you were angry because you felt... and thought...", "This upset you because...". It helps to become aware of what happens to you and what you do inside yourself.

Good luck! You sound full of purpose and energy! B.

B1: Submit

S1

I had trouble expressing and dealing with my real emotions for years because I continually trusted the wrong friends and therapists -- people who made me feel ashamed and unsafe (just like my original abuser). Finally, I got really really angry, and I have dropped the shamers and abusers and sought more understanding friends and therapists. Now I have found that sometimes my emotions that were repressed in the past just about explode in connection to current events that recall the original event or feeling. For instance, someone failed to show up for appointments with me twice in recent weeks, although she apologized and had semi-decent excuses. But I was just absolutely FURIOUS with her because (I can sense this now after beginning to learn to trust my inner voice) her behavior recalled all the times in my past when someone I trusted bailed out on me. Thankfully, I vented to myself (and one other person) and not to her. In other words, I didn't get abusive with her. But I was cussing her out in private for days. That's how angry I was about all the past situations in which I was abused but didn't acknowledge it and allowed it to continue. I think it took many years of support groups and therapy to feel my real emotions and connect them to the proper events. Now I often even feel the emotions in real time!

B1: Submit

S1

hi all, this is char.

thanks very much dr. Irene, and the other posters. I agree strongly that it IS very easy to get stuck in the same old anger and pain, and that it is very important to move on. the difficulty is in doing that.

what happened with me is that I went to my first session with a therapist and as I was parking my car to go in, I burst into tears. there was this HUGE feeling of relief and this awareness that I have been 'hanging on' for so long. the thing is, I DID NOT KNOW THAT I HAD BEEN 'HANGING ON' FOR SO LONG. it was absolutely wonderful to feel like I was beginning to relax, and at the same time frightening to realize that these feelings have been there and I DID NOT KNOW IT - consciously, that is.

I had a sense at that moment that it is this 'hanging on' that I've been doing which is the source of my depression, or perhaps it is better to say that it is my REACTION to hanging on - the resentment and anger I feel about hanging on, being strong, handling the problems by myself in my relationships that is causing the depression. I'm literally fighting myself internally, or something like that. so of course I'm depressed! Yes, and working way overtime!

right now I'm being somewhat clear and coherent about this, but to come to this point has taken several days. at the time with the therapist, I was not so clear or coherent. I was in the middle of these mishmash of feelings, trying to let her know what was going on with me, while at the same time trying very hard to respect the rightful needs of the therapist to get the 'business' handled, and also try to allow her to begin whatever 'treatment' or intake or whatever you want to call it.  Let the therapist worry about this part, not you.

but it's tough. I ended up feeling more depressed than ever. I've been talking with therapists all week, I've called a couple of hotlines, I've barely been able to sleep all week, I feel like this huge volcano has opened up and I honestly don't know exactly what I need to move forward. I'm terrified. Let yourself be. It's OK to be scared... 

and since I am IN this huge mishmash of feelings, I am wanting support, validation, and a reality check to see if I'm being at least minimally healthy. I don't want to shoot myself in the foot, and at the same time I want to be able to take as much power as I am able to in the moment.  You are feeling off the wall because your anxiety level is sky high!  Try to remember that's mostly what this is, even though it feels like it's lots more. You'd feel much better with some St. John's wort or an SSRI.. You'd also be less anxious if you knew how to let yourself be anxious without being so scared of it. Since I know you don't know how to do this just yet, that's why I suggest the herb/meds.

I don't want to take up too much space from family and friends - I completely understand how helpless they feel. yet many of them do tell me that they are 'here' for me. it's just that I can't 'take care' of them right now, I can't figure out FOR them how much is too much from me. So stop trying to do their work. They'll do it,  Your job is to take all the space you need right now and not worry about how it's affecting others. OK?

same thing here. I don't' want to take up too much space from dr. Irene or other posters, I have joined the support email lists, I've been reading the yak boards, and I've found out about local support groups in my area. Don't worry about my space. Just take yours...

it is simply that after years of doing so much for others, and allowing so many people that were the very closest to me to take way too much advantage of me, I don't' know what healthy boundaries really are. especially since I am not even AWARE inside how much is too much FOR ME. You are still working too hard at protecting other. You need to stop this. I think you should look at a boundaries book:  Better Boundaries : Owning and Treasuring Your Life by Jan Black and Greg Enns and Boundaries: Where You End and I Begin by Anne Katherine are both excellent.

this is a process, I understand and appreciate that. it is one very slow painful agonizing step at a time. and I'm working very hard to allow myself to make mistakes, to learn, to be slow, to be patient with myself and with others. it is fine with me if it takes a lifetime for me to learn. but right now I'm in a 'crisis' emotionally and I need a reality check - NOT someone else fighting me and telling me I'm taking up too much space or time or whatever, which is what I'm very afraid of. this has not happened yet, but I do get the sense sometimes that perhaps I am. Please stop second guessing yourself. Just take up all the room you want. Take up "too much" space. Let yourself be. For a change.

I do not argue that I need to let go of this fear, again, of course the thoughts and beliefs are SO important, and here is where it seems like so much of a dance, ALLOWING myself to be afraid and follow it through DOES HELP. on the other side of it, there is some peace and therefore the space to see what is actually going on.

god, I hope I'm making some sense here to all of you. Perfect sense.

one other thing, getting remarks like the following from dr. Irene: <<First of all, whatever you do has to feel OK to you. Otherwise you won't do it. So, start by finding a therapist who is willing to meet you where you want to begin. A sensitive, experienced clinician, cognitive or otherwise, will. Cognitive therapy can be very emotional! If your therapist continues to push thoughts and beliefs when you are someplace else, go someplace else. Therapy is more art than science.>> is TREMENDOUSLY empowering. Good!  there is a wonderful piece of wisdom there about doing what has to feel good or I won't do it. among other things. this is what I need from all of you, and also from myself. 

and whether it's been said a hundred times in other ways, in other places, about other things, I need all of it. which is another reason I love this site so much, and just bought a ton of new books, there is so much of all of you putting yourselves out here for me to read. it makes a huge difference. it really helps.

thank you all for sharing so much and I hope to hear more.

char

B1: Submit

S1

I too am having a hard time finding a therapist. I have been to three of them. They all tell me that my husband is abusive. I know that validation is important and needed, but I want to work on myself, be given homework and not just spend the whole time whining. I want to figure out my part in things (I know that I am attracted to abusive men) so that I will be able to make the changes I need to. I don't think that I am impossible to please because I had a great therapist 10 years ago (ACOA issues), but he moved to another state. Getting very tired of therapist shopping... 

Trista

B1: Submit

S1

hello again, char here.

thanks so much for the response. yes, my anxiety level is really high. I've come to realize that this is probably my most immediate problem at the moment. Are you appropriately medicated with an antidepressant?

I went back to that therapist and told her what was going on with me, what I felt from the first session and she was great. she let me yak and yak and yak. she validated me, let the session go way over, was very very supportive. and, at the end when I told her I felt guilty for taking so much extra time and that I wanted to pay her more because of it, she told me to let her worry about her boundaries. ohmigod, what a relief!! it was just an immense relief and I slept better that night than I have in a while. See what wonderful things happen when you open your mouth?

so for the moment I think I have found a good therapist.

as far as drugs, I do think they can be useful, but there is another thing going on that I had not shared yet. I'm pregnant. Congratulations! No drugs for you...  I had a miscarriage last summer which was really sad and painful - I'm 39, didn't think I could get pregnant and you know about that damn biological clock... well, I don't know if I will carry this one to term, and of course my feelings about children and pregnancy and all that are another source of anxiety at this time, but I feel like I am moving forward, thank god.

I was also able to tell a couple of other therapists I was on the phone with that I simply did not feel comfortable with them and thanked them and called others, which is a big accomplishment for me. I was polite, but firm and didn't give in to feeling guilty and therefore do something I really didn't want to do. small steps, but steps forward for me. Excellent. Notice that people respect you when you open your mouth and state your position calmly and firmly? (And if one or two won't, just reiterate your words over and over, like a broken record. They'll get the point. Do Not engage and get on side topics.

my therapist gave me a list of additional support groups to attend and I'm excited about checking them out. I'm painfully aware of how isolated I feel and feel very much like I need to break out of that. Excellent!

the anxiety is the worst right now. I've been looking back and I'm beginning to realize that I haven't been sleeping well for several years now. sometimes I do okay, but especially lately, trying to sleep is very difficult. I've been taking valerian root, which helps, and is not dangerous when you're pregnant, but it still doesn't handle it.

I'm just going to share a bit here, and let dr. Irene and everyone else worry about how much space I'm taking up. :) About time!

anyway, I've been married twice and am currently in a relationship with a man that's lasted about a year so far. all my relationships have been abusive at some level, including the current one, but fortunately I'm learning not to engage so much and the abuse in the current one has actually decreased. it also helps that we don't live together.

my 2nd husband was the worst. I walked out of my marriage and straight into the one with my cuff, obviously repeating many of the same patterns.

I met h2 at a personal growth seminar. I'd started doing a bunch of them and he seemed to know so much, and I felt very much like I didn't know anything, and that I needed allot of help. he was perfect. he was very ready to tell me what was wrong with me and how I needed to fix it. he began teaching seminars himself on healing, emotional release and personal growth. ha! he's such a jerk. behind closed doors all that he taught would go out the window and he would scream and yell at me, cuss at me and lie and manipulate me. I was shocked when it started, but I rationalized it over and over. I hope this taught you to, above all else, trust yourself!  And, to stop looking for answers outside the self. 

I figured he knew so much about this stuff, and I didn't, maybe it was ok to be shitty and fight dirty. which is what he did. only when I did it, boy would he hit the ceiling! and I was so sure that he was THE answer to what I was going to do with my life that I just hung on and hung on. rationalizing all his shit, making the things he said about me right, stuffing my anger and resentment. he was always so SURE he knew me, so sure he knew that I was being shitty when I simply wanted comfort, so sure I was 'living in the past' whenever I was angry with him, whatever.

he always had so much for me to do for him, he played the martyr really well. and I realize now that I felt guilty about my professional success, sure I didn't really deserve it. he never worked until he began to do seminars, and even then he never did more than cover some of his expenses. he never gave me any money, but would spend plenty. and I supported him that way, thinking he was brilliant and just needed someone to support him. god, I was a fool.

as I said, everything he taught about 'going with the flow of life' would fly out the window when things did not go his way. he had such a way of speaking, such a charisma, I always felt inspired when we had some good talks or when I saw him teach. yet he would fly into a rage if I was 10 minutes late picking him up at the airport, or if I felt sad about something. he didn't want me to work very much, yet he wanted me to make a lot of money. one time I was building him a computer and cut my hand very badly. he didn't believe in hospitals or doctors, except the dentist, so I never got stitches or anything, and ended up with my hand very swollen and painful for a week or more and a fever. I literally couldn't cook for myself or carry almost anything for a couple of days and he got really angry after 2 days of caring for me.

after a couple of years he decided to write a book, which meant that he wrote the first draft and I wrote the remaining drafts, the final copy, self-published it and distributed it. all while I was working full time and he was gone most of the time traveling doing seminars and having a blast with all the new friends he met. he wanted it done so quickly, I ended up taking about 6 months to do it, which is pretty remarkable given the pressure I was under. I even had to find an artist to do some drawings for the book myself.

it was almost a fight to get him to even mention me in the book. he was the author and I got a mention in the dedication. that was it. he was always so convinced his brilliance was hidden, so he could never share the spotlight, or even thank his students for attending his seminars. Ugh.

he does not think the rules of society are for him. he does not do anything outright illegal No, he just sells out and compromises his integrity left and right. I'm sure he is under his own internal "house arrest" though... , he is actually frightened of legal authority. he wanted to get married for tax purposes, then he could say that using his expenses, he had a right to a portion of my income. but we kept the marriage a secret because he also believed that monogamy was stupid and insisted on an open relationship. Ugh! What a cad! And you had to be as lost a soul as they get to buy into this junk. Glad you're well on your way out of that place... I personally think that those things are up to the individual couple, as long as there is real consent. I know many people who are empowered in non-monogamy. but it's not for everyone.

anyway, he kept our marriage a secret so that it would not frighten away other women from creating a relationship with him. he insisted on bringing his girlfriends home, and spending time with them. and many of them are wonderful and I became good friends with them. I am very good at creating a comfortable home, and he loved that. I remember what people's favorite foods and things are and I do like to shop for people, so we would have people stay over for several days, whether other couples, friends or his girlfriends and they always were treated well and appreciated what I did. You are a lovely woman. Too giving though... 

but even with all I did to try to 'process' my jealousy or feelings of being hurt, take care of ALL the shopping, write his book, counsel his girlfriends, make his airline reservations, fix his computer etc. etc. etc. (and LOTS of etc.) it was never enough for him. I was always too 'needy' for him. and he would fly into a rage if he even thought I wanted comfort with him. I was only allowed to be with him if I was happy and wanted nothing from him.  Ouchhh...

I can't tell you how good it feels to get this stuff out. even as I'm so embarrassed about how foolish I was. I'm very happy you see it! And taking your power! Finally and about time!

I don't know how many of you are familiar with the idea that life is a 'mirror reflection' of ourselves. the idea that we create what we get and have in life. h2 used that with me constantly. every time he screamed at me it was my fault, I created it, he would say. any time I felt dissatisfied with our relationship or with getting my needs met, it was always my fault. he believed very strongly in self-responsibility, but he was never responsible for the relationship or anything negative that went on. hmm, I should say he was always responsible, he felt, for the positive breakthroughs that people had in their lives, but never responsible for the negative. crazy making for sure!!! Total crazymaking. This is not responsibility. What a mis-use of the word!

he became involved in a few tantra communities, and soon was traveling to Europe. while there he met a rich heiress who fell in love with him. soon he was spending most of his time with her and some other girlfriends in a communal home that she paid for and spent less and less time with me. and more and more we fought. I did spend a little time there, and they even spent time here in my home, all of us women became good friends. but it ended up that the women were responsible for processing each other about their relationship with h2, and he literally picked who he would sleep with that night. 

he is there now, in that communal home paid for by the rich heiress, teaching seminars every now and again, with a small community following. Yuk yuk yuk! This guy sounds like he's out to lead a cult, females only please.

and he has new girlfriends show up every now and then. picked out mainly from his seminars. he even joked one time that every seminar he would make a 'connection'. how sickening.

what was also crazy was that he still wanted me around to do things for him. I paid his bills, kept his address in the states, did the taxes, all sorts of things. I was his 'home base' when he came back to the states. yet he called less and less, rarely emailed me, and hardly let me know his schedule. the last year we were together we just fought almost constantly because I felt like I wanted a minimum of time and attention from him if I was going to also do all these things for him. he would literally have a 'to-do' list for me and that was primarily what we would communicate about. he wanted me to do a film for one of his seminars, rewrite his book, help him write new ones, send him a monthly package of mail and periodicals, buy his clothes, fix his computer etc. etc. I even would answer some of his phone messages when he didn't feel like it. even do some counseling when he wasn't in the mood.

it was nuts. but heck, he had a great deal. a woman who would do all this and make no demands on him, give him an open credit card, leave him free to come and go and yet always be welcome, never have to pay a salary, or even express appreciation for what got done. many of his male friends were envious of him. I was considered a model for some of his friends to find for themselves. and h2 liked to use me as a model for his other girlfriends to let them know how well life worked according to what he thought it should be.

through all of this, I was hanging on to some 'future' out there that I thought that eventually I would process myself into. eventually I thought I would give up enough of my emotional baggage to create this utopian community family that I would be a part of, one that would be full of love and sharing and intimacy. I truly believed there were things 'wrong' with me that I needed to fix. Yeah: him. "Fix" as in get rid of.. I felt guilty constantly for not meeting other people's expectations and constantly second-guessed myself, 'understood' everyone and decided that I had to take care of them to make up for what they didn't get in their childhood or in their lives. Ouchhh! 

fortunately I'm beginning to see my own arrogance and manipulation. I'm beginning to see how I allowed him to do all that because I felt that I deserved it. not that he didn't do anything wrong, he did. but I was a part of it by believing myself that I wasn't worth anything. fortunately I'm beginning to shed some of my guilt. fortunately I'm beginning to see how my resentment and anger is carried over from the childhood abuse I suffered, how I have continued these patterns throughout my life. Yes...

I think now that it is this guilt that is creating so much of the anxiety I'm in right now. there are a couple of pieces of unfinished business I have with h2 that I have not completed. I need to get them done Why? Because you promised? You owe him nothing., but I think I'm also fighting the resentment of doing one more damn thing for that creep Listen to your resentment. Stop doing for "that creep" as you put it.. so it's like being between a rock and a hard place. and one that I have created myself. I realize that. something that I have to finally give up, for sure, somehow.

I also feel a tremendous amount of anger and resentment that he is living this life in Europe getting all his needs met the way he's wanted to, being this total jerk, while I sit here depressed, in debt up to my ears, unable to work and lonely as hell. again, these are my feelings, I know I'm creating this myself. and it is what I need to give up. Right now. This second. Not one more iota of work for him.  Cancel his credit card. Explain later.

I feel bad for his girlfriends in Europe. I can imagine that when they finally wake up and move on, they will have a lot of healing to do. I have already blown the whistle on him with a few people. but I have not been really public about it. and I wonder if I should. hmm, reminds me that several years ago, people in his seminars and community used to think it would be great if he got on oprah. I think now that if he ever did, I would write the tell-all book about him. :)  And why shouldn't you? You'd be earning back a bit of what you'd spent on him.

all the love I had for him is dead now. I wouldn't live there in that community with him if my life depended on it. I want nothing at all of what he has created. thank god. there is no pull for me to be with him anymore. I do want to get beyond this resentment and anger. and I am trying, I think. I hope I am. I want to move on with my life and be done with all of this. and maybe I will write that book someday, but as a way of letting other successful women know that they are not alone if they have done things similar to what I have done. it is so embarrassing to talk about this. I feel like I should have 'known better'. You knew what you knew and did the best you could with what you knew. No shame in that. Shame on those in your life who took advantage of you, because they did know better.

well, thank you for providing this space and all the time and energy that dr Irene and everyone has put into this board and other places, the books, the email lists and boards, all that. I certainly don't expect any replies to all of this, it just feels good to share. You've led quite a life Char. I think you should write your book regardless of whether or not be become a household word. What an incredible book: you were so lost, you let the man with the answers brainwash you; the awakening feelings and pain leading to your eventual recovery... Wow!

thank you. 

char

B1: Submit

S1

Char,

I have found an excellent therapist, who I trust immensely. I found her by calling a domestic abuse clinic for a referral--be sure to say you are dealing with abuse issues. My therapist is good at getting me to recognize my emotions right away, so I don't let them fester. For example, when talking about something that happened with my STBX, she will say, "How did that make you feel?" Then we will explore my emotions and discuss my reactions, and whether they were appropriate based on my feelings. I think a good therapist is crucial--I know I would have had a hard time dealing with my separation and impending divorce without her.

B1: Submit

S1

hello again, char here.

thank you so much for your comments, dr. irene and everyone. one thing i wanted to clear up right away is that h2 does not have any credit cards of mine. i'm not supporting him in any way financially anymore. we got that all taken care of last april and the divorce will be final in a few weeks, thank god. Thank God. the last ties with him i was talking about had to do with his email. he is using a mailbox on one of my accounts. i introduced him to email and the web and all that in the beginning of our marriage and he uses it constantly now to keep up with his community.

and since our divorce won't be final until early january, we are still married for the year 2000 and he wanted to file taxes jointly for this year and using his expenses, get a larger refund and split the difference with me.

so, the two things i have left to do are to spin off his email into it's own separate account and tell him my decision about doing taxes together. i've needed the time to come to terms with my decisions, to balance the anger and resentment with feelings of guilt and pain. it's like the pain has needed to heal some, i've needed some distance to see what has been really going on so that i would feel good about my decisions. if i don't feel good about them, if i am not as clear as i want to be, then that is the place i can be manipulated - heck where i would want to be manipulated - until i get clear. i don't know if that makes sense or not. Lots of sense. It's true!

i'm becoming more and more aware as time goes on, as i continue to read this board, my books, talk with my therapist, etc. etc. my own responsibility in what has occurred in my life. this is distinct from blaming myself. Excellent. but i am beginning to step back and understand a bit better what my goals have been, what i've been trying to achieve and seeing the mostly unhealthy way i was going about that these last years with h2. Taking stock is soooo productive! And just in time for the New Year! Actually, the official start of the New Millennium!

so, i have to say that the comment that i was 'lost' and 'brainwashed' is a bit uncomfortable for me. I'm sorry...  i don't know, maybe we all are to some extent. but for me, h2 spoke so clearly, i thought, the ideals of 'power with' as opposed to 'power over' that i believe in, and yet his actions were so at odds with that. at the same time, i worked so hard to have an open mind, to give up preconceived ideas and embrace the new and unknown in an attempt for real growth and enlightenment that i ignored my inner voices telling me that i was in a toxic space. h2 was so sure of himself. so clear that what he was saying was right, that it was in line with these ideals, and the dream i thought he espoused was so much my own dream, so much of what i wanted my life to be, i simply did not want to lose that. i hung on for dear life because i thought it was my life.

i was wrong. and thank god i realized it before i did die, i certainly felt like i was heading that way. i had such a hard time believing that he was actually manipulating and lying to me. i didn't want to believe my dream was nothing but ashes.

so what that means is that i won't be doing taxes with him for this year. and i don't feel guilty or bad about that. i realize i won't get the tax benefit anymore than he will, but truthfully, i would rather the government get the extra money than any of it go to him. Giggle! and i will either spin off his mailbox into a new account or cancel his mailbox by the end of the year, depending on whether he gives me the correct info i need. Snicker!

that will be the last tie i have with him. and i will be glad it is over between us.

and as far as my anger and resentment about his life going so well, even though he is such a creep. i'm not supporting him, and i honestly do not know how he is supporting himself except that more than likely the rich heiress (who is, btw, young, beautiful and talented) he is with is doing that. but even without that, just as a general principle, it is frustrating that such a jerk has so much and i feel so stuck and like i've lost so much. What does he have? An illusion he believes in at the expense of his Self? I promise, promise, promise you, this guy is not happy, gorgeous heiress and all.. On the other hand, you were able to discover yourSelf. Think of it: Would you rather be poor, plain, and content with your life and the person you are, or would you prefer a life of wealth, beauty, toys and trinkets, but devoid of inner peace? Would you rather feel a relentless sense of restlessness and boredom, even depression? Would you want to spend your energy chasing excitement, conquest, something new, anything new - to keep your inner dissatisfaction at bay? To be so out of touch that you don't recognize the source of your dissatisfaction is within... but there is no answer to that except time and my own healing. eventually i will move past this resentment and desire for revenge, too. Human nature. though i have to say i enjoy allowing myself to have this for a while. Good! i don't take it seriously so much anymore, i am attempting to have more humor about it all, and i know i need to move past it. You will. You are already moving past it. The tone of your note and your overall acceptance of Self tells me that. 

i realize that inside he must be living in his own internal hell. I should probably read the whole post before I start typing. (But, it would take too long so I don't...) and i'm sure that things are not so happy in the community he has created, and i want nothing to do with it. but he has gotten many gifts from life, from god, however you want to say it, and i feel he has misused them. He misuses life itself. His own and that of others. but that is my opinion. i will let life decide what is next for him. More good attitude.

currently i feel like i'm doing well with the therapist i chose. i did get her from the local domestic abuse organizations, and i am glad i went this route. she seems to understand very well the issues that i'm working through and i find her very supportive. Yipppeeee! after seeing her just 3 times these past two weeks, plus the support on this board, i'm sleeping much much better and feeling like i will be ready to work again soon. i'm feeling much less overwhelmed and even - dare i say it? - some hope that my life may actually turn out ok. Yippeee! (By the way, it will.) it is hard to have hope. the anxiety comes up very quickly. i still have a lot of healing to do. Yes, but you have turned the corner. As you continue to face the fear, the fear will disappear. 

i would like to write a book someday, i'm sure i will. and i do want to find a spiritual community to be a part of. one that is also an activist for change. that is my dearest dream and always has been. nearly all my life i've been a liberal activist of one sort or another, and i've always enjoyed being a part of those communities. if nothing else, these 5 years with h2 have taught me a helluva lot about what i consider to be healthy change, vs. unhealthy change. starting as always, with myself.

thank you once again for your generous sharing of your time and support. it helps so much. "It" doesn't help so much Char. What you are doing with it is what is helping... Keep up the excellent work... 

char

B1: Submit

S1

I spend most of the week thinking poisonous thoughts about my father, especially in the early part of the week after Sunday dinner. what is the best way for me to express this hatred??? i have fantasised about him dying and even urinating on his grave and am concerned that I am going off my rocker!

B1: Submit

S1

10/10/02 Dear Dr. Irene, RE: "Choosing a Therapist" and Comments by Char. I would just like to comment that I am in the process of finding a therapist also, and I'm finding it to be more anxiety- producing, than I had anticipated. Someone once told me that, "it is a good idea to find a therapist before you need one" and unfortunately, I am finding that statement to be true. Choosing a therapist feels kind of frightening to me bcuz, I desperately need therapy, but right now am feeling very vulnerable, and also aware that I'm probably not my own best advocate. Nevertheless, I think that it is critically important for me to be able to find "the right therapist", who is not only oriented in a way that will meet my needs, but also whom I like and trust, and who is also willing to work with me in therapy. Geez, how to make a sane decision when feeling insane!? Has anyone else had this experience? Any suggestions? Thank you for the wonderful and needed website. Lavay and desperately need therapy. And at thisto find a good therapist