Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Head shrinkage

New therapist, new book. Both improved!

A few weeks ago I had a horrible session with the therapy dude. He made a serious judgment error and completely lost my trust. He threw back at me all of my life issues (father's death, lack of real life support, personal rejections, etc) and said, "these are all the little stories you are using for not dealing with my OCD."

I felt 2" tall leaving his office, completely belittled, humiliated and beyond help. I reached out for help and got my hands slapped. As soon as I drove away, I was a mess of tears and dark thoughts. How I got home is a mystery to me. I hope he's reading this.

Later I thought, "Little stories? Excuses? WTF? These are my life circumstances. I'm not in denial about my OCD and that I need help. That's why I'm here in your fucking office feeling incredibly scared and fragile and requesting help, ffs! And you rip me to fucking shreds. You fucking asshole." Now I really hope he's reading this.

After some supportive words from friends (blows kisses), I get my nerve back and I go see a new psychologist.

Enter, Ms Shrinkychick! Kind, understanding, knowledgeable, etc... instant trust. Whew! I've seen her now a few times and though I'm terrified about what I'm going to be facing at least I feel that she's on my side.

Wow. Writing this has been good I think. I didn't realise the full extent that that bad experience had had on me.

(wipes tears)

Ok, back to writing.

Ms Shrinkychick recommended a book which I went out and bought right away cos I'm sooo obedient (snort):

I read Chapter 1 in the parking lot and cried like a baby (again). The authors wrote (along the lines of) 'this may stir a lot of anxious feelings but that's ok, let them be there. Just keep holding on the book and moving your eyes and read a bit more." I found that incredibly comforting. The authors really do understand the terror and that encourages my trust.

It's another ACT (acceptance and commitment therapy) book, similar to one I read previously though geared strictly towards anxiety disorders. That is much more reassuring to me as OCD is way beyond 'normal' life worries - the Happiness Trap was a good intro but I often felt it was not geared towards my experience.

It scares the crap out of me though, learning this new way of being with my anxiety - instead of not responding to its warnings as I do. Intellectually, it makes sense to me. Emotionally, I feel as though I'm risking my life. Seriously. I feel that I may actually die if I do not listen to what my OCD tells me to do.

It's like how I imagine doing a skydive. Intellectually, I know there's a small chance of dying but really it's safer than most activities. But! Emotionally, I imagine standing at the door high above the ground, looking out, with all the 'warning' emotions and survival instincts screaming, 'Don't jump! don't jump! Are you fucking crazy!!??'

This pic (swiped from here) sort of captures how I feel:

I'm in a plane about to either jump or get pushed! Holy fuckeroni!


  1. My first impulse, other than to smack that first "therapist" (fucking asshole indeed), is to want you to be friends with Death. Read enough Pratchett, and the whole idea, indeed Anthropomorphic Personification, is rather friendly.

    Having once looked my own death in the face, my fear of dying is just this tiny little part of me that says, "well, I have a lot more to do yet, don't rush me, and we'll be friends."


  2. I can't think of anything intelligent to write here marnie, so I'll just go for supportive and send cyber hugs for another successful session very soon with the lovely Shrinkychick. Right after you get back from sky-diving and pack away the chute nice and carefully. Mwah!

  3. Thanks for sharing, Marnie. It's helpful for me to get a small glimpse into the way things look from your point of view and how you feel when OCD comes up for you.

    May your collaboration with Ms Shrinkychick be very fruitful.

  4. Ms Shrinkychick (such a cool name, imagine that) sure sounds like she is better suited to your needs. That other arsehole deserves a big slap in the chops or worse...I volunteer!
    (I hope he's reading!)

    Aeroplane = height = danger = death = freak me out I get the idea of how your OCD must impact your life. Keep up the reading and visits to Ms Shrinkychick - wonder how her Dad coped in school with that surname??!!!

  5. Sounds like there was only one little story going on and that was in his pants - what an inadequate anglo saxon reproductive organ.

  6. Zhoen, yes courage is key, indeed. I'm trying to find mine.

    Thanks, Ann and lol... actually I'm thinking a sky dive might be sort of therapeutic, eventually.

    Thanks Judy... I hope it's grapefruitful!

    I think you sort of get it, Rob. Wanna come sky-diving with Ann and I? ;-)

    lol, Jane...

    Thanks people but to be fair, I don't think the first therapist set out to chop me down. I think he just completely misread me which can happen between people... unfortunately it happened then! Or fortunately.

  7. Ms. Toast Burner, the first therapist may have not set out to chop you down,but if he is a qualified therapist,he should NEVER misread you or anyone..that could have life or death consequences in some cases!! I'm glad you found Ms.Shrinkychick! I suffer from severe anxiety, and understand the need for a GOOD therapist!! take care!!!

  8. Thanks Lonewolf and you're very correct.

    Anxiety is a bitch, isn't it? I wish you well with your therapist. You take care too. :-)