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Is this normal for Ts?

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Is this normal for Ts?

Postby exul » Sat Jul 07, 2018 5:01 pm

Hello everyone, I'm here with my extremely long posts. Again.
I don't know if I should write this here since it's more related to experiences with therapists than DID. Let me know if I should remove this.

I honestly can't handle seeing my T anymore.
I don't know if this is some kind of technique she uses to try and make me feel better someway, but if so, it isn't working. Everything I tell her, everything I say and/or experience, she doesn't give me true answers or explanations anymore. She just keeps telling me that "that is a normal thing everyone has", and leaves it there. The confusion and the amnesia for my past seems to not concern her anymore, and she dropped the hypothesis that maybe with EMDR I'll get a better understanding of the situation, maybe because I told her that I did that with my ex-T for months and it didn't work a bit.
Every time I tell her about how I feel bad/anxious/drained/depressed, she tells me to go deeper into the reasons why when I'm the one that doesn't understand them either, and she tries to give explanations through what I tell her about my daily life, but none of them truly gives solutions or even resonates with me.
Every single time I get angry at myself and when the session ends, I feel way worse than before and the bad thoughts are so intrusive I can barely handle them.
I'm too afraid to address this to her because the next session will be the last before I move to another country for university, but I'm starting to ask myself if this is normal.
I mean, this happened with all three of my past/present Ts.
So is it me? Did any of you experienced things like this, or do you think/know if this can be considered an attempt to make me feel better and "normal"? Or does this mean that I refuse to see something that they so obviously see? Is it a common thing for Ts to normalize and brush off everything and not give solutions or ways to cope?

I'm so afraid to search for another T when I'll move because I'm afraid they might tell me the same things.
I'm terrified that I might do something bad before that happens because I feel like I'm never fully in control of my thoughts and actions.

Thank you if you read this far, and don't worry, I'm safe right now. Just in a bad place mentally.
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby birdsong87 » Sat Jul 07, 2018 5:35 pm

what is your Ts diagnosis for you?
it sounds like either she does not treat you for DID because she doesn't think that this is actually your problem, or that she doesn't know how to treat DID because she lacks understanding of structural dissociation.
If it was us we would ask very straight forward what she thinks our problem is.
we would probably find that we are not agreeing in that point in some way.
You can't fix a problem that is not defined correctly.
Dx: DID cPTSD
L (host); Mike (caregiver); Asti (co-host, achiever); Annett (teen protector); Maya (child); Thamara (child); Danielle; and others
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby exul » Sat Jul 07, 2018 5:56 pm

Unfortunately she and the other Ts never gave me a diagnosis. The first two were against "labeling" patents, so they didn't made me do any tests or screenings whatsoever. With her I did the SCID-II (trough which she found out I had symptoms from more than 5 PDs, but said that "they weren't clinically worrisome", and blamed my BPD traits on the fact that I am still 18 yo), the DES (and she said that "I'm very prone to dissociation" but never specified or tried to understand if this is part of a DD or not), and another screening to find out if I had some kind of toxic beliefs, and my family's situation when I grew up (which I don't actually remember). And that's it.
So technically I'm sane and healthy, even if I dissociate daily (a thing she agrees with).

She repeated more than once that some of my emotional problems are related to the need to always be in control of myself, so that's why I'm afraid to ask her what her thoughts are on all the other problems: she never gives me ways to cope, except grounding techniques with dissociation, and I don't want her to blame my problems on me again without having a way to change them. Idk...
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby DozensOfDenizens » Sat Jul 07, 2018 7:27 pm

exul wrote:Unfortunately she and the other Ts never gave me a diagnosis. The first two were against "labeling" patents, so they didn't made me do any tests or screenings whatsoever. With her I did the SCID-II (trough which she found out I had symptoms from more than 5 PDs, but said that "they weren't clinically worrisome", and blamed my BPD traits on the fact that I am still 18 yo), the DES (and she said that "I'm very prone to dissociation" but never specified or tried to understand if this is part of a DD or not), and another screening to find out if I had some kind of toxic beliefs, and my family's situation when I grew up (which I don't actually remember). And that's it.
So technically I'm sane and healthy, even if I dissociate daily (a thing she agrees with).

She repeated more than once that some of my emotional problems are related to the need to always be in control of myself, so that's why I'm afraid to ask her what her thoughts are on all the other problems: she never gives me ways to cope, except grounding techniques with dissociation, and I don't want her to blame my problems on me again without having a way to change them. Idk...


One conversation on the topic of "labeling" that we had with our T in our first session when we brought up that we felt like we had more than one personality was honestly a really good mindset for our therapy. She told us that she was slow to diagnose because she likes to explore every option. My response to that was something like, "There's a difference between our last therapist doubting what we were saying and therefore not being willing to diagnose us, and you wanting to really come to understand what's going on before putting it in the box of a specific diagnosis. I don't mind it." It sounds like your T is just doubting what you're saying and invalidating your reality, and doesn't really believe you need help when it sounds like you feel you need help.
-Mike


I agree with Mike, and I'm sorry you've struggled for so long to find a good therapist. I hope you find a good one if you decide to search for one when you move!
-Elder


One thing that I don't understand is why people think telling someone they're normal helps at all. If someone doesn't feel normal, telling them they are normal is just gonna make them feel worse.
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby Devgan » Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:16 pm

Hi exul,

Yep I trust what you are going through is normal.

As I read it (and if you want you can read what follows), it's simply that you are acting again some sort of transferential relation with your T. Some relation that led to that sort of dead end you mention when you don't dare speaking out. It may be a relation from your childhood (to a closed one? Parent?) where you too had this unpleasant feeling of being stuck with a person who tells you platitudes when you'd need more help.

That you went through that with your 3 T imo is that you simply 'chose' them more or less consciously to help you play again that dead end scenario and every time do ' alittle better ' than the time before to sort out the issue.

What different action could you do today in this scenario with your current T and that you feel could help you not reproduce the not so helpful ending with your Ts?
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby Windsoar » Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:26 pm

When you look for a new T ask for one with Trauma experience...the more the better. Unfortunately I had a T that wanted to do EMDR & other methods rather than treat the problem. EMDR, etc can be a great help to aid in working threw issues but not the prime purpose. I've learned I need to interview Ts. Good ones understand cuz there has to be a chemistry too.
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby Johnny-Jack » Sat Jul 07, 2018 10:37 pm

It takes an educated and skilled therapist to treat DID successfully. I think we're talking about well under 50% of therapists. I base that on reports from my T, who gives seminars to educate practicing therapists on how to recognize and treat dissociative disorders, especially DID.

exul wrote:Unfortunately she and the other Ts never gave me a diagnosis. The first two were against "labeling" patents, so they didn't made me do any tests or screenings whatsoever.

Yes, huge difference between "labeling" someone and getting them a proper diagnosis for their particular condition or illness, mental or otherwise. Not doing any screenings whatsoever can be malpractice in some cases, either ethically or legally. For example, if medication is indicated, treating bipolar or schizophrenia with talk therapy alone could be life-threatening. An improperly treated mental illness may result in suicide.

Therapists like you describe can be limited by a predisposition or bias (possibly due to training overvaluing talk therapy), a lack of depth of education about dissociation or other symptoms, self-importance ("I can heal this person"), or more selfish motives, conscious or not, like hanging on to a client for financial reasons. Testing may lead to treatment elsewhere. I experienced the latter myself with one T.

So technically I'm sane and healthy, even if I dissociate daily (a thing she agrees with).

Actually, she may not be wrong. You're clearly not insane and you may present as fairly mentally healthy, even with dissociation. Host alters who attend to therapy often do that from habit. Until we realized we had DID, the hosts during therapy would to tend to "hold it together" to some extent because that's what we've always done. Our mother was called "crazy" by people in public sometimes so we avoided any possibility of that applying to us. None of that means you don't need a diagnosis or specific treatment.

Even if your perspective about the therapy is incomplete, it sounds like her approach has not been a win overall. By incomplete I mean behaviors that are fairly common in those of us with DID: not being able to stand up for, recognize, or express our needs or point of view, questioning our own perceptions, fuzzing out, fear of challenging those in positions of authority (especially over us), etc.

We wish for you, exul, an empathetic therapist who either is well-trained in DID or will educate themselves about it quickly. And as windsoar said, someone with chemistry with you. You deserve it and they are out there.
Dx=DID John, Johnny, Ryder hosts. Sphinx. Ulric, Gwendolyn 50s. Marc-Dominic, Aaron, Gaul 40s. Jonathan 33. Neville 20. Quato 19. Kyle 16. Calvin, Daniel 15. Faolán 14. Mick/Mxyzptlk, Gordon, Pehr, Hoyt, Flynn, Cam, Cully, Tuck, Abel, Eberly, Will 13. Nigel 12. Orval, Jack 11. Abraham, Zane, Ty, Randy 10. Brody 9. Sky, Yanni, Vince, Luke, Hank, Xavi 8. Chase, Matt, Cole 7. Andre, Godwin, Greg, Carter, Estes, Seamus 6. Michael, Caleb, Inky, Kent 5. Bartholomew, Raisin Annie, Casper, Scott, Hansel & Johann, Wats 4. Pip, Max, Little John 3. Ashár, Henry 2. Edward, Clark, Zeb 1. Adam <1
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby raptureblues » Sun Jul 08, 2018 1:26 am

I've felt like this about previous therapists and my current therapist, initially anyway. I've found there are therapists who are overly cautious because they want to make sure they've explored all options with you, who don't want to "box you in" just in case they were wrong, who genuinely listen to what you say but try to reserve judgement. The crux with that is whether they ever finally make a judgement.

The therapists that never make a decision and are always brushing off questions about what they think with "what do /you/ think" and constantly trying to normalise symptoms out of fear that they're pathologising things are the ones that are difficult.

My current therapist initially made me feel like I was being brushed off, or that my experiences were being treated as symbolic/metaphorical, but when an alter fronted in a session she immediately took action, contacted my psychiatric nurse to make sure she knew what was going on, and every session since then she's made it very clear what she thinks and where she stands. My doctor is "anti-diagnosis" in the sense that unless it's required for medication or to access certain treatment, she doesn't think it's good to get a diagnosis "just for the sake of it". I don't know if she'll change her mind if my therapist contacts her about it, but I do get where she's coming from.

It's frustrating because even if my current treatment is going well, if that treatment suddenly ended, my current diagnosis doesn't accurately reflect my issues at all, so if I couldn't get a diagnosis review before seeing someone else, I'm not in a good position.

Basically the tl;dr is it's normal to feel like this about therapists, sometimes the cautious approach they adopt isn't a bad thing necessarily but it depends on what action they take. I'd say it's worth sticking with a therapist until it becomes clear whether they'll take action / take you seriously when it counts. Also if a therapist makes you consistently feel bad, and brushes you off if you raise it with them, then I'd suggest finding someone else at that point.

I hope you can find the right therapist in the end!
Dx: BPD / OCD / MDD / seeking formal DID/OSDD diagnosis

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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby TheGangsAllHere » Sun Jul 08, 2018 1:49 am

Johnny-Jack wrote:It takes an educated and skilled therapist to treat DID successfully. I think we're talking about well under 50% of therapists. I base that on reports from my T, who gives seminars to educate practicing therapists on how to recognize and treat dissociative disorders, especially DID.


I think you (or your T) are being overly generous. I think that well under 50% of therapists are capable of recognizing and diagnosing DID, let alone treating it successfully. It's a very self-selected group of therapists who even choose to attend a seminar about how to recognize and treat DID. I'd say only a tiny fraction of the Ts out there are capable of treating it successfully. (But I'd be happy to be proven wrong!)

Johnny-Jack wrote:Even if your perspective about the therapy is incomplete, it sounds like her approach has not been a win overall. By incomplete I mean behaviors that are fairly common in those of us with DID: not being able to stand up for, recognize, or express our needs or point of view, questioning our own perceptions, fuzzing out, fear of challenging those in positions of authority (especially over us), etc.


Wow--this is really well-stated, Johnny-Jack. And a T with some experience and skill knows how to help someone become more comfortable and feel empowered to express themselves.

Exul, I hope you don't give up on Ts completely. There ARE good ones out there who can help you.
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Re: Is this normal for Ts?

Postby Johnny-Jack » Sun Jul 08, 2018 6:29 am

TheGangsAllHere wrote:
Johnny-Jack wrote:It takes an educated and skilled therapist to treat DID successfully. I think we're talking about well under 50% of therapists. I base that on reports from my T, who gives seminars to educate practicing therapists on how to recognize and treat dissociative disorders, especially DID.


I think you (or your T) are being overly generous. I think that well under 50% of therapists are capable of recognizing and diagnosing DID, let alone treating it successfully. It's a very self-selected group of therapists who even choose to attend a seminar about how to recognize and treat DID. I'd say only a tiny fraction of the Ts out there are capable of treating it successfully. (But I'd be happy to be proven wrong!)


You're absolutely right and my T actually says pretty much what you did. I was avoiding including her more depressing comments about how smugly confident yet clueless many seminar attendees are, even afterwards. Like a therapist of 25 years saying "I've treated a multiple before so I already knew all that." (a multiple in 25 years. How many did she miss!?!) Smug is probably my word but that's the gist of it. Oops, well, I did just include the depressing comment but it's probably not news to anyone here.
Dx=DID John, Johnny, Ryder hosts. Sphinx. Ulric, Gwendolyn 50s. Marc-Dominic, Aaron, Gaul 40s. Jonathan 33. Neville 20. Quato 19. Kyle 16. Calvin, Daniel 15. Faolán 14. Mick/Mxyzptlk, Gordon, Pehr, Hoyt, Flynn, Cam, Cully, Tuck, Abel, Eberly, Will 13. Nigel 12. Orval, Jack 11. Abraham, Zane, Ty, Randy 10. Brody 9. Sky, Yanni, Vince, Luke, Hank, Xavi 8. Chase, Matt, Cole 7. Andre, Godwin, Greg, Carter, Estes, Seamus 6. Michael, Caleb, Inky, Kent 5. Bartholomew, Raisin Annie, Casper, Scott, Hansel & Johann, Wats 4. Pip, Max, Little John 3. Ashár, Henry 2. Edward, Clark, Zeb 1. Adam <1
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