I Started DBT

Last night was the first night with the group. Lucky for me, only four of us showed up plus the two therapists that run it. Meaning, I was relieved there wasn’t the full house of ten people + the 2 therapists.

I just met one of the therapists for the first time last night as well. And he seems really nice, but also dedicated to what he’s doing. He clearly enjoys it. Both therapists are young, which is to be expected I suppose. It’s been a while since therapists and psychiatrists were actually older than me.

The other therapist, the one I’d already known, is my individual therapist.

I’m not going to say anything else about the therapists right now because I don’t want to jinx anything. Last time I got excited about a therapist, she turned out to piss me off and frustrate me more than help me. She talked a good game on the phone, about knowing how to help those with complex trauma and that ended up to be bullshit.

But then she’s also the one who FINALLY picked up on my impulsive behaviors when I talked to her about some things that had been bothering me and she found this DBT program for me. So I’m thankful for that.

However, I do think there were plenty of other indications before that when I was in therapy with her and she could’ve caught it earlier.

I was also sitting there thinking last night while I sat at that table in that tiny conference room. “This should’ve happened a long time ago.”

In all the therapy I’ve been through, both psychiatrists (when they still had office hours and were also therapists), psychologists, social workers and two hospitalizations, DBT should have been offered to me repeatedly.

I even had a therapist once who saw the BPD traits. He’d suggested a book for me to read that mentioned some of the traits of BPD, even mentioned borderline personality disorder.

When I saw him again after finishing the book, I told him that I saw me in those traits. He nodded and quietly said, “Yeah.”  But instead of informing me of DBT and helping find a way to get it, he continued to not help me. In fact he was abusive. This I realized later though, in hindsight.

It’s hard to think about all the time wasted, the years behind me I’ll never get back. For one, my parents had no idea what they were doing, never helped me figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up, didn’t help me deal with emotions, disappointments, heartbreak. Even my joy was dowsed.  It’s no secret they were causing what they should’ve been helping me cope with.

And two,  because the professionals that were supposed to be there to help, allowed me to slip through crack after crack after crack.

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16 thoughts on “I Started DBT

  1. Sometimes I think about this, too. About all the wasted years, all the therapy that did me more harm than good. I’m 64 and I am feeling, thinking, and functioning far better than I ever have before. It feels wonderful to be doing so well, but wow — just think of what I could have done with my life if I had been given this kind of help 50 years ago! Although the biggest thing that has helped me, neurofeedback, is a brand new concept to me, according to the history I have read, NFT was actually discovered decades ago — before I was even born — but the pharmaceutical promoters derailed this non-drug type of treatment.

    Thinking about all of the lost opportunities is a real downer. I hate feeling down, so I looked for a positive spin, and I quickly found one! If I didn’t have developmental, or complex PTSD, or if I had been successfully treated decades ago, I would still be 64 years old today — only, instead of feeling and functioning my best ever, I would feel like my best years were behind me, and it was all going to be downhill from now on.

    Who wants that?? I am super grateful to be exactly where I am in my life today!

    I am especially grateful after meeting with the surgeon yesterday. The cyst he removed two weeks ago was not cancer, as I feared it would be. According to the pathology report, my body was having an autoimmune reaction to that cyst! That’s why I felt so sick, that I thought I was dying. But ever since the cyst was taken out, I have been feeling a little stronger and healthier every day!

    So it’s all ok with me right now. I’m not 20 and ready to go to college and have a great career, but it’s still ok. Because my best years are NOT behind me! 😀

    Liked by 3 people

    • Whew! So happy to hear the cyst wasn’t cancer!

      I like your perspective on the past. But I’ll be honest. I’m just not there. I talked about it in therapy today and she was really validating about it which was nice.

      I will need to work on the “radical acceptance” of it all.

      I’m angry at all the therapists in my past who didn’t see it or if they saw it (because one did) did nothing. I’m angry about it right now. Makes me want to break things when I think about it.

      It makes me think that if I’d had the help I’d needed, my life would be better right now. I’d have better/healthier relationships. I’d have a better man because I’d be a better woman/person myself and I’d live in a better place. I wouldn’t be struggling, I wouldn’t be dependent on someone else financially. I would’ve had the strength to stick up to my narcissistic family way before things got completely out of hand. And I’d have that positive outlook overall and could look back and be proud of things I accomplished and also look forward to more.

      So that’s where I’m at right now.

      Liked by 1 person

          • Thank you. And I am trying not to think about what my old AA sponsor used to say when she asked how I was doing, and I answered that I was doing good. “This too shall pass,” she always replied. And she was right. Life is like that.

            But even so, right now I am feeling pretty fine. I was just reading a book that asked “Can you describe your life in 2 or 3 sentences?” I thought for a second, and it came to me:
            1) I get knocked down.
            2) I get up again.
            3) You’re never gonna keep me down.

            But right now, I am chuckling about the line in the song that comes next!

            Liked by 1 person

              • Well, already my joyful high about not having cancer has passed. Or at least faded a bit. I am flying to Washington state this weekend to visit my daughter and granddaughter. I bought the cheapest tickets I could find, but even so, it left me with no extra money for things like getting my hair done. So, I colored my gray roots myself, today. And screwed it all up. The overall color is wrong, my roots are lighter than the rest of my hair and also too red, and I somehow missed a big swatch of gray right on top. And day after tomorrow I am going to fly to Washington looking like this.

                So yeah, it’s great that I don’t have cancer. But… my HAIR!!!!!

                Liked by 1 person

  2. I tried therapy recently. I thought with a psychiatrist I could sit and talk about my stuff and get help. She was more interested in prescribing Adderall and getting me out the door. I haven’t been back in almost a year. I have no interest in being the fastest one in and out of the office. I wanted to talk to her, but she never opened up communication for me to even attempt to do it.

    I feel like people care less and less about mental health and more about their paycheck.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Unfortunately there are so many shitty therapists. Psychiatrists around here don’t even see patients anymore like therapists do. You either see a therapist or more and more it’s social workers that are the therapists.

      Psychiatrists are for meds only around here. I mean they ask a few questions when they first meet you but 15 minutes is hardly enough time to prescribe something that gonna most likely cause more problems than they’re supposed to fix.

      The place I go though, I have to check in with a psych every few months even though I’m not on meds and have no interest in psych meds.

      I don’t like that part of it because I will never agree to meds. But the doc I saw last time didn’t push it at all. We’ll see what happens next time.

      Like

  3. I really resonate with the struggle of looking everywhere and meeting blocks or bullshit or charlatans. If we hunger and dont know how or why we are so vulnerable. .handling our emotions and thinking related with all the unprocessed hurt leads so many of us to the edge of despair and suicide.
    I find most recovery by being validated but also seeing when my thinking spirals out of control into really dark places understanding how and why and how to soothe is so important. I hope DBT helps with this. Love Deborah

    Liked by 1 person

    • Self soothing…something I really need to learn how to do. I live with someone who isn’t the best at validating or even acknowledging simple statements. It’s frustrating. Self validation is what I desire to learn how to do. Ignore what I can’t control and move away from those who don’t fulfill my needs. Lots of work ahead and still working on momentum. Thank you, I think DBT will help.

      Liked by 1 person

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