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Unread 03-13-2017, 05:47 AM   #1
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Default What should I tell the counselor?

Every Monday this psychologist from my health care provider calls me to check in and see if I have done CBT activities. This week my goals were to step up my half marathon training and look for a job. Mostly what I did was stay in bed.

I feel like telling her that she should not bother calling me anymore. That I know all I need to do is look for work.

I actually feel guilty when she calls. I don't feel like I can tell the truth. The truth is I am swirling in the darkness. I did send her emails to this effect.

Maybe this is a technique counselors use. That is, not really taking too much about the fact I am still extremely depressed.I don't know because I have never experienced suicidal ideation until this year.

When I am positive and upbeat this seems to "please" the counselor. But when I have had a bad week she makes me feel I have somehow failed her. I HATE this dynamic.

I wonder if I should tell her what I am think about hating these check in calls because I am not progressing.
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Unread 03-13-2017, 06:15 AM   #2
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Default re: What should I tell the counselor?

Sometimes, it just takes a while before we are ready to talk about our stuff. We sort of have to "warm up" to it. It helps when we go more often but most of us can't afford this. Be forgiving of yourself about this. You are not harming anyone and you will tell her more when you are ready.
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Unread 03-13-2017, 06:29 AM   #3
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Sometimes, it just takes a while before we are ready to talk about our stuff. We sort of have to "warm up" to it. It helps when we go more often but most of us can't afford this. Be forgiving of yourself about this. You are not harming anyone and you will tell her more when you are ready.

She just calls to "check in" on the phone so it is not like therapy. I don't know what the hell it is. Maybe she does it because I called my health provider's crisis line after hours and said I had suicidal ideation. That got reported to their behavioral health unit and she started calling me. If I see her in person my copay would be $160 -- I can't afford that -- but when she calls it is free. She also invites me to email her any time.

But nothing is changing. I feel like I almost want to lie to her just to keep things going but not have to deal with the whole feeling of failure which is the last thing I need at this time.

I will probably tell her the truth today.

Yeah, deeper stuff...but CBT is "short term" -- who knows...maybe today she will tell me I have used up my phone chat quota.
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Unread 03-13-2017, 10:11 AM   #4
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Default re: What should I tell the counselor?

I can relate to your feelings I know it's hard, but telling her the truth really is the best solution.. and sharing how you feel about this whole situation. It's not easy, but I think it will be worth it.
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Unread 03-13-2017, 11:06 AM   #5
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I can relate to your feelings I know it's hard, but telling her the truth really is the best solution.. and sharing how you feel about this whole situation. It's not easy, but I think it will be worth it.


Meh. I can almost hear her pouting over the phone if I did not do what I said I would do. I feel crappy guilty and stupid for spending the week in bed. I feel guilty as all heck. I am afraid to go for another job because I got fired from the last one. She will just use CBT which is aversion therapy and just tell me - again - that I have to get out there. I am so down and out. She's kind of a butt kicker.
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Unread 03-13-2017, 02:22 PM   #6
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Default re: What should I tell the counselor?

The psychologist said I was trying to control the anxiety by staying frozen and not doing anything. She said this actually feeds the anxiety and increases it. Her "homework" was once again to start looking for a job even though it made me feel anxious, and to get out of my apartment every single day. She also mentioned buspirone but I don't want to go the medication route especially because I read that some people have increased anxiety on buspirone. No thanks.
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Unread 03-13-2017, 02:47 PM   #7
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Default Re: What should I tell the counselor?

Quote:
Originally Posted by DechanDawa View Post
The psychologist said I was trying to control the anxiety by staying frozen and not doing anything. She said this actually feeds the anxiety and increases it. Her "homework" was once again to start looking for a job even though it made me feel anxious, and to get out of my apartment every single day. She also mentioned buspirone but I don't want to go the medication route especially because I read that some people have increased anxiety on buspirone. No thanks.
I think looking for a job and getting outside every day are good suggestions from her. What do you think though? Does her "homework" align with your personal goals? It's always best if you and your therapist are on the same page.
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Unread 03-13-2017, 03:14 PM   #8
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I think looking for a job and getting outside every day are good suggestions from her. What do you think though? Does her "homework" align with your personal goals? It's always best if you and your therapist are on the same page.


Yes. The goals are fine. I guess I don't understand all the anxiety. She said it is building up because I am feeding it by staying isolated. I have to trust her. You see, it is more about the management of anxiety. That's my problem, not the goals. I took diazepam on and off for over 20 years to manage my anxiety but now they won't prescribe it. So it feels really weird and it is frightening for me to not be able to just pop a diazepam. I was one of those people who always carried them with me. I also hid stashes all over the house so I wouldn't run out. I think this was...addictive type behavior. She's trying to teach me coping skills and that's good but I am also kind of freaking out. I am sorry. Really sorry, guys.
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Unread 03-14-2017, 08:13 AM   #9
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Default Re: What should I tell the counselor?

Personally I am shocked at these goals. Seems like a case of biting off more than one can chew to me. Is this her gauge of what is possible for you to accomplish or is she herself motivated by pressure to get you back to work. Is this reasonable? Doesn't sound like it to me. I can see talking about returning to work but I see this as being more of a goal to seek out upon completion of the therapy program. I've taken CBT and that doesn't sound like a realistic, measurable, and incremental goal to me; unless you are nearing completion of the therapy. Just how far are you through it? This really troubles me. On the other hand, if she does consider this doable I want to extend to you my hugs of celebration as this would indicate a significant improvement.
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Unread 03-14-2017, 10:43 AM   #10
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Personally I am shocked at these goals. Seems like a case of biting off more than one can chew to me. Is this her gauge of what is possible for you to accomplish or is she herself motivated by pressure to get you back to work. Is this reasonable? Doesn't sound like it to me. I can see talking about returning to work but I see this as being more of a goal to seek out upon completion of the therapy program. I've taken CBT and that doesn't sound like a realistic, measurable, and incremental goal to me; unless you are nearing completion of the therapy. Just how far are you through it? This really troubles me. On the other hand, if she does consider this doable I want to extend to you my hugs of celebration as this would indicate a significant improvement.


It is not really a program. She is a psychologist from my health care provider who calls me once a week. She is too expensive for me to see in person...$160 per visit, but the phone calls are free.

She feels that working will get me out and I won't be isolated anymore.

I guess she sees it as a life goal. It is needed for my survival. So whether or not I am capable of it is not up for discussion. I kind of feel like I am handicapped by not feeling very strong mentally but I guess I can hide it.

I don't know if she thinks this will make me happy or less stressed. If she does then I think she is a bit deluded about my so called recovery.

I don't think working is going to solve my problems. I probably won't be able to get a great job to start...and the lower the job level the more stressful it is.

On the other hand...I see it as a first step...to escape isolation.

Work has never been the most important thing in my life. More important is getting out in nature, doing art, appreciating other cultures, volunteering for a good cause, friendships, travel, exercise, and spirituality.

I would like to get some of those things back. The psychologist calls me and we talk about CBT skills and managing my anxiety. Right now my anxiety has been through the roof. I really don't know what is worse...depression or anxiety.

I think my main goal might be to accept that I have a very stressful life and it will probably remain so until I am dead. Along the way I still might like to have a few enjoyable experiences. So whatever I do to get out of isolation is good.

Thank you for caring. You are a sweetheart!
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