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Is all CBT a joke, or does my therapist just suck?

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Re: Is all CBT a joke, or does my therapist just suck?

Postby LowneWolfe » Sat Jun 27, 2015 4:57 am

I came across this site looking for this very topic...too bad it's a year or more old thread. Oh well my $0.02 anyway.

I've looked into cbt and I can't see the point in it...I mean if your problems are internal and maybe you just can't stop yourself from spiraling down into negative thoughts once you have even a minor negative stimuli ok maybe...but when your problems that totally destroy you on a daily basis are real, totally external, and beyond your control I just don't see how this method can work.

Considering what my problems are I see like this; You've got no arms, you can't move, you can still feel perfectly fine, someone comes up and begins stabbing me in the leg over and over. cbt says I should simply not think about this as I normally would...ok I'm still getting stabbed in the f* leg you dolt...no amount of happy thoughts or ignoring the situation or trying to "think differently" is going to change that or stop the flow of blood and pain now is it? Nor is simply discussing the matter going to stop it. Only one thing would stop it, stopping it from happening, but in my case this isn't possible.

Granted, it's not really that basic of a process but that's how it always came off to me; ignore the issue and act like it isn't an issue and when you see the issue come up think about it differently. This might work for some but for those with real external problems that are beyond their control that negatively impact them daily if not every second...I just can't buy into it, did try.

Now have I seen a counselor who used this method? No, but I have read up on it...didn't feel like wasting time/gas/money considering what I've read about it, plus if just talking could help me it would have LONG ago. Always makes me feel way worse discussing my issues.
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Re: Is all CBT a joke, or does my therapist just suck?

Postby Ada » Sat Jun 27, 2015 11:06 am

LowneWolfe wrote:I mean if your problems are internal and maybe you just can't stop yourself from spiraling down into negative thoughts once you have even a minor negative stimuli ok maybe

Which happens to a huge number of people. And the way you've phrased it here. Seems to me like you're trivialising it. When it's actually a very real, valid and painful process. And something that helps is worth its weight in gold.

LowneWolfe wrote:but when your problems that totally destroy you on a daily basis are real, totally external, and beyond your control I just don't see how this method can work.

I do think you're over simplifying it yes. No one's saying CBT is the best therapy for everything everywhere. No one on the planet would say it's the best for being stabbed. :lol: If I have cancer I want appropriate treatment. Not CBT. It doesn't do much for bipolar or schizophrenia. It's not a magical all cure.

LowneWolfe wrote:Granted, it's not really that basic of a process but that's how it always came off to me; ignore the issue and act like it isn't an issue and when you see the issue come up think about it differently. This might work for some but for those with real external problems that are beyond their control that negatively impact them daily if not every second...I just can't buy into it, did try.

From personal experience. I think it can be easy to get confused about what's internal and external. If I am terrified of dogs. That seems to me obviously external. The way to deal with it is just to avoid all dogs everywhere. Avoid places that might have dogs. Avoid leaving the house because people often walk their dog on the street. That's all external to me. My problem would be simply solved if people banned dogs.

Or. I could try CBT to gently challenge some of those fears. Which ones are reasonable. [If the dog is frothing at the mouth. There's no good reason to go within 100 feet of it. :shock: ] Which ones might not be so reasonable. [Having a panic attack over the neighbour's Yorkie dog. Being "just" a strong wooden fence away from me.]

As I see it. The one of the good thing about CBT is the helpfulness test. Is this thought helpful to me? "My co workers are bullying me." That's a helpful thought. I can go to HR or confront them or change jobs. "My co workers are spying on me to gather evidence to get me fired." That's not so helpful. Sometimes it'll be true. Sometimes it'll be a sign of some problems with paranoia. Sometimes it'll be guilt because I'm spying on them. But if the thought brings anxiety with it, if the fear overwhelms any common sense about what could be going on. It's not helpful. I can't take any constructive action based on it. So I see CBT as being one approach helping me understand what I can do. And what I need to let go. Which is not ignoring or whitewashing. It's not being unsafe. It's about bringing my healthiest reasoning to the issue.

CBT from outside seems like "common sense." "Of course that dog won't hurt you." "Of course your co workers aren't conspiring against you." But common sense takes time and work to bed in. So that it's the default way of thinking. And so that you ARE still keeping yourself safe. That the thoughts and feelings are proportionate.
We think too much and feel too little.
 More than machinery, we need humanity.
 More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness.


Charlie Chaplain in The Great Dictator
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Re: Is all CBT a joke, or does my therapist just suck?

Postby remusmdh » Mon Jun 29, 2015 1:15 am

Here is my two cents on CBT from being to about a half dozen of them and all state mental healthcare places ramming it down my throat over about a twenty year period: no one therapy method is for everyone nor able to cure everything/anything for that matter.

I have multiple PTSD triggers n flashbacks now from multiple CBT "specialists" I was sent to. Not a one of them every helped me in the least. I was even told once to go kill myself if that was my intent while he laughed in my face about the flashback I was trying at that moment to tell him about.

But I have friends who have been helped greatly by CBT'ists. I'll never go to another one of them unless by court order or some such, but that is because they are just not right for me. They trigger me and have no skills for coping with such. But for depression and anxiety, there is little that is supposedly better than them.

But DID, prolonged trauma PTSD? ahahahahaahah, run, run fast.


(notecard from one of the Others: there is a chance at some point down the road once He is stabilized enough we may take him to another CBT specialist for their POV on how to move forward in other areas, such as His social anxiety and suicidal thoughts. But not right now.)
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