Therapist dodging almost everything I throw at him.

Postby Tyto » Mon Jul 27, 2020 10:06 pm

Hey.

I'm fairly young to the mental health community, I've only been in therapy for around 2 years now. I wasn't wanting to go there, but after venting a little to one of my teachers (I was 15 at the time), she elected for me to be sent immediately to go get help. If that help was from a counselor or something of the kind, I would've been fine with it. But apparently a Psychiatrist AND therapist was required to sort stuff out.
In the two years I've spent with those two, very little has been sorted out.

I've been as honest and transparent as I could be with them, the things I didn't want to touch on (history with sexual abuse, times with paranoia etc etc) I made clear that we can come back to it when I feel more comfortable with them. They respected my wishes for about maybe a month before drilling into that aspect of my personal life.
This has caused me to distrust my therapist, I don't want to open up to them if they're on some personal crusade to evade my personal boundaries, despite me saying it will take time to cross that bridge.

Eventually, my therapist chalked it up to an Autism diagnosis. I don't disagree with it, but I'm very much at odds with its effect on my personal life. Everyone around me (family, close friends ect ect that know about the diagnosis) are starting to treat me as less-than. I'm not unfamiliar with being seen as stupid or 'gifted' as we call it here in my country :roll:
After that immediate diagnosis, my therapist has been shutting me down with whatever I might be suggesting to him in regards to my mental health.

This is purely my personal opinion, but many friends of mine in the mental health field, as well as people I've consulted with generally in the talks we have, have recommended me bringing up DID. I talked it through with said friends and I agreed to bring it up to my therapist, as DID did actually sound like some if not most of the things I was experiencing (and still am experiencing). My therapist immediately said to not overcomplicate my situation, and to best understand that everything I was experiencing was drafted back to Autism, or some regular human process everyone goes through.

I enjoy my therapist, he's a pretty nice person overall, and not a bad person to talk with about ambigous topics not aimed at me. But the way he shot down my suggestion made me feel like my opinion didn't matter, either.
At this moment in my life there are some very basic things I cannot do, or can do but with extreme difficulty. I'm confused and scared, and I want to know whether my therapist is good for me, or if I'm good for me with my therapist at that wheel. I realize this has become somewhat of a rant post, I apologize for that. But I don't want to go through these years without the proper help I need in order to function as an adult.
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#1

Postby Candid » Tue Jul 28, 2020 8:28 am

I'm sorry you've had such clumsy management in therapy, Tyto. No therapist should be crashing into no-go areas with a client, labelling him autistic, or determining what he can and can't say about his own mental health. Your teacher's well-intentioned interference was the first step in forcing you to go where you weren't ready to go. And a psychiatrist in the mix, as well! In my experience the majority of them make snap judgments then reach for the prescription pad.

Maybe it's time to start being non-compliant.

Tyto wrote:the things I didn't want to touch on (history with sexual abuse, times with paranoia etc etc) I made clear that we can come back to it when I feel more comfortable with them.


Presumably you don't yet feel more comfortable with them, and I'm not surprised it made you distrustful when both of them started asking questions. It sounds as though they're from the Freudian school of thought. Ripping through a client's personal boundaries is the opposite of good therapy, which aims always to understand and validate a client's own perspective.

Everyone around me (family, close friends ect ect that know about the diagnosis) are starting to treat me as less-than.


Naturally. And that doesn't help with your sense of self, does it!

After that immediate diagnosis, my therapist has been shutting me down with whatever I might be suggesting to him in regards to my mental health.


It infuriates me that 'therapists' like this are allowed to practise. You're a human being with your own understanding of life, not a broken machine to be fixed. When this kind of 'treatment' starts, you're on the road to having one individual therapist's goals and values forced upon you.

I'm not going to go into suspected DID, except to say that it's extremely rare and there's a lot of doubt as to whether it actually exists. It limits its manifestation to people with a high IQ coupled with Adverse Childhood Experiences, a term you might like to google.

My therapist immediately said [...] everything I was experiencing was drafted back to Autism


This is a 'therapist' who made a snap judgment and isn't about to let it go, like a dog with a bone. He ought to be struck off, because he's no longer listening to you. Everything you tell him goes through his filter.

I enjoy my therapist, he's a pretty nice person overall, and not a bad person to talk with about ambigous topics not aimed at me.


See how he reacts when you tell him you don't think he's a good 'fit' for you, and you'd like him to refer you to someone else.

I want to know whether my therapist is good for me, or if I'm good for me with my therapist at that wheel.


I think you know the answer to that. You were pushed into 'therapy' you weren't ready for and immediately fell into the hands of two ghouls with their own agendas. They have actively disempowered you.

Empathy, or being able to “put yourself in somebody else's shoes,” is a hallmark of good therapy. ~ https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/50-sig ... 0therapist.
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#2

Postby Tyto » Tue Jul 28, 2020 10:33 pm

Thank you Candid. It does very much bother me that a stranger over the internet is a better source of comfort for my mental health than two mental health clinicians who're supposed to be in one of the highest chains of psychiatry in New Zealand.
Then again, there's a reason we have the highest rates of suicide in the world. Either way, I am very thankful for your response.

Candid wrote:Your teacher's well-intentioned interference was the first step in forcing you to go where you weren't ready to go.


I agree. My teacher is the person I feel least resentful towards for this experience. Outside of this particular experience, they have been a wonderful mentor and friend of mine for many years.

Maybe it's time to start being non-compliant.


I'm not exactly sure what this means, sorry. If you could elaborate that would be awesome :).

It sounds as though they're from the Freudian school of thought. Ripping through a client's personal boundaries is the opposite of good therapy, which aims always to understand and validate a client's own perspective.


Couldn't agree more. I believe one of my therapists is an existential coach, helping people with problems having to do with the nature of existence, and their relation to it. Which is fine, but not what I need. I need help.
Perhaps I should bring it up with their higher staff? If they're doing it with me, they're likely doing it with other clients.

Naturally. And that doesn't help with your sense of self, does it!


No. :(

It infuriates me that 'therapists' like this are allowed to practise. You're a human being with your own understanding of life, not a broken machine to be fixed.


I am curious. What would be your definition of a 'good therapist'? Would it be the ones who abide by empathy? Or would a good therapist be what I need at the time? Or both? Forgive the curiosity, the only experience I've had with therapy are those two people.

It limits its manifestation to people with a high IQ coupled with Adverse Childhood Experiences, a term you might like to google.


I cant say much on the high IQ part. I like to say I think differently than others, I can't say if I think better than some. Adverse childhood experiences I'll comment on by saying yes and leaving it at that.

See how he reacts when you tell him you don't think he's a good 'fit' for you, and you'd like him to refer you to someone else.


What should I look for?

Empathy, or being able to “put yourself in somebody else's shoes,” is a hallmark of good therapy.


Nevermind the above question about what you think is a good therapist I forgot you wrote this, lol.

Thank you for your answer, Candid <3
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#3

Postby Candid » Wed Jul 29, 2020 9:32 am

Candid wrote:Maybe it's time to start being non-compliant.

Tyto wrote:I'm not exactly sure what this means, sorry. If you could elaborate that would be awesome :).

It would be a good experience to take the reins. You're allowed to say "I don't want to talk about that" in any situation. Your guys sound a bit intimidating, but keep in mind that you're the client. They're supposed to provide the service you want.

Perhaps I should bring it up with their higher staff?

You certainly have the right to do that. However, as in a work situation, it's politic to discuss it first with the person with whom you have a problem. In your position, since you're getting it from both of them, I would take it up with the therapist because "he's a pretty nice person overall, and not a bad person to talk with about ambigous topics". You could simply say: "This isn't what I expected from therapy and it isn't helping me. Are you able to refer me to a talk therapist?" There's nothing wrong with this, because continuing down the wrong road is a waste of their time as well as yours. Should he demur or try to fob you off, you might be brave enough to say that directive therapy is doing you harm.

And beyond that, my Kiwi friend, you go to the higher authority or simply stop attending.

I like to say I think differently than others, I can't say if I think better than some. Adverse childhood experiences I'll comment on by saying yes and leaving it at that.

And that's your right as the client. There's a difference between a client and a patient, and right now you're being treated as a patient. You've asked for a service and you got the wrong one, not what you wanted.

I'll add here that I presently work for an agency that provides free counselling for anyone who's been sexually assaulted, whether it was yesterday or 40 years ago. I'm a survivor of Adverse Childhood Experience as well as of rape, and (naturally) a veteran of both good and bad 'therapy'. The right therapist for you will create a relationship of trust and stay with you until you decide it's time to unburden yourself.
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#4

Postby Tyto » Wed Jul 29, 2020 11:12 am

thank you.
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#5

Postby Archtech » Mon Aug 24, 2020 1:38 pm

There comes a time when you have to move on from your therapist, this happened to me.
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#6

Postby GalmOne » Mon Aug 31, 2020 3:42 pm

Yes, it looks like it's time to find another one. Unfortunately enough, therapists aren't like "physical" doctors, you can't get feedback on how successful they are, and sometimes end up into the hands of someone incompetent, malevolent, or just misoriented; it can even just be that they don't understand you, as a person, at all.
That's really the hard thing in mental health... I hope you'll soon find a better therapist, one who'll actually be able to help you.
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