Lonely Child

It absolutely drives me crazy that I continue on this path in life and I want it to STOP.  Emotional exhaustion.2B8A306D-EEC3-451C-B4E5-72356F719629

All my life, I have been focused on others, usually a mother figure, and knew that it was because my mother and I were not close.  Mom was mom, I knew I was her daughter but no love expressed or shown, only one hug in my life that I remember.  Sad, so sad.

I would always connect well with older adults, men or women, as I welcomed their advice and direction. It’s with those that showed me care and concern though, the motherly women figures, I became attached.  I want more of their time, their advice and above all the care they gave me, the hugs.   This pattern continued over and over until time passed or I was hurt by something in the relationship and my view of them became disillusioned.

B3A64380-6F30-4C99-AA61-18391435F291Realizing the same thing did exist and still of my former counselor.  Transference.  According to what I have read, transference is typical and actually normal as it causes the client to relate with the counselor, as there is a trust that is built, which is what is needed in a therapeutic environment.  I get that but did not want this to happen yet again but it did.  

21322BA5-94BB-47E4-A4E2-DD75EBACAA0DThankfully, before she left her practice, we discussed my pattern in life many times and how this affected me.  I am unsure with her leaving, if she realized that I would struggle as much as I have.  I do.  Probably so, as she knew me quite well.  I really get tired of this and thoughts that continue though.  Nothing bad, nothing sexual but thoughts of I wish I could talk to her as I am unsure about this or that, questioning if she even thinks of me or remembers me now, hope I run into her, etc.  Make it stop.  Make this pattern stop.  Frustration of this seems to be a daily task, feeling the loss of an emotional attachment, the grief that is felt but more-so the abandonment yet again in my life, feeling lost in the I need you, I don’t know what to do, etc.  Normal.  Being a child not receiving the care and concern, this pattern exists, like it or not.

Tonight as I did some research and found some links, I was amazed that I am not alone.  This is way normal for many.  Go figure. Here I thought something was wrong with me and that, too, is a normal response to this pattern.  What is wrong with me, besides of feeling somewhat obsessed is the fact I did not get the love I needed as a young child and this enabled coping skills for me by seeking out those that will care and love me.

534C191C-A93A-4F2B-AB29-D73862F42095These websites gave some tips on how to stop this, usually in a girlfriend/boyfriend situation but can be interchanged also.  The link below is a post from Obsessed with the counselor’s reply.  Obsessed could be me writing this and I had to actually question if it was me but the date it was written was too early in our counseling together.  I understood Obsessed.

Also recommended that further thought be made as to when this all started in youth and examine this pattern. Acknowledge this and to not ignore the thoughts and feelings.  To be and feel the attachment and have the fear of abandonment is rooted here besides childhood emotional neglect that I have mentioned before in my writings.  I get that but finding that root has been exasperating but I am determined to be healed in this area.  I’m tired.

Life is interesting.  It’s hard at times.  I have learned through this and other areas within counseling and research that knowing I am not alone, healing begins and I adapt better.

Just knowing I am not alone.  It’s like a gift.

This is an area that in between counseling sessions, it is our due diligence to do further research to help ourselves.  Counseling sessions end after fifty minutes or so but can continue if you desire.

Learning more on transference and reading of others experiencing the same tonight, this was on my timetable and free plus nice to know I am normal.  Normal due to my situation.  Adult problems are childhood issues.

While I miss her as my counselor of four years, I probably will continue to think of her but maybe now not as much and have input how to help me overcome this pattern.  I know this is an area I have dealt with most of my life so I will struggle at times, with God’s Grace I will get through this.  No matter, I wish and pray the best for her.  I was blessed to have had her in my life and she will always be a part of my testimony.  Many times, I wish she would read my writings as she brought me to this point.  Although I hurt emotionally at times, I am not in the pit of hopelessness I was four years ago walking through her door.

My hope one day is that I can stand on a platform telling my testimony of emotional healing and God’s Grace upon my life through troubles and trials with her joining me to my right, holding her hand up in appreciation and praise to God.  God knows the desires of my heart and maybe one day this will come to pass.  I have hope.

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Most important is that only the Lord can fill the void within us with His Love.  ❤️

 

https://www.goodtherapy.org/blog/dear-gt/help-i-cant-stop-thinking-about-my-therapist

 

Talk Therapy

E6E1AFF8-2975-4BC1-A816-7D9FB63713F2Oh how I miss my former counselor but feel blessed with my present ones.  They are all so different with their techniques and process of therapy. I know at this time in life, this is were and what I am to do. I’m just unsure where it all will lead.  One day (session) at a time.  It seems we just talk, or I talk.  Just that is a growth in me though because years ago I normally would not talk much in sessions but listen, grasp the words from her while understanding my past and present, glancing into the future.  It was as if she turned a light on for me.  In looking at and organizing my storage box of four years recently of my notes and of my own research done, we covered a lot of trauma, abuse and emotional baggage.  Not easy.  Being aware and becoming enlightened, brought life to my spirit, soul and body.

E9F4DB66-DDBC-42E9-BE3E-23F237FB8225Seeing this photo yesterday on a post (info noted below), it is so me whether words were spoken or just my many thoughts tossing around in my mind, I was everywhere.  This is a great post and page to follow on Facebook. Hope you enjoy. Thank God for counselors and in my case, Christian counselors.

Perhaps if you are in a place that needs direction, consider making an appointment with a counselor.  The stigma of counseling is still a major negative with so many but it is your life to make that final decision and not care what others (family or friends), the church, etc., think or say.   I know I am a better person today and happier.  God is still and always will be my focus.  I was just at a place I needed someone to see me, hear me, and understand me.  Just that brings healing to a wounded heart and mind.  Life happens!

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I feel He opened doors for me to have my specific counselors. That’s God!  Honestly, I don’t know if I would be here right now otherwise as all hope and desire to live was pretty low many years ago.  So, I have come a long way and by the Grace of God.

He knows my name (your name) and He knows where I was/I am (you are).  Trust Him.

8571872E-63A2-4FCE-9BC3-8455241DDB9DWith my former counselor of four years, and this may sound selfish, but I really feel He prepared her with all the education required, training, etc., just for me.  He knew I would need her.  I did!

Hopefully, my writing will encourage you if discouraged and push you toward finding a counselor.  This is part of self-care and needed, not selfish as you are worthy.  Do this for you.

Or perhaps express my appreciation of those in this field as a counselor/therapist helping others.  Thank You!  This field is not one to take lightly.  A small fortune to go through the years of education, training, internships, continuing education, building your business, etc.  Let’s not forget the emotional toil it takes to listen to person after person of heartbreaking, life situations that brought them to through your door.  Your own self-care is needed and required.

As you can tell, I support counseling.B4B00A52-0CB6-4198-B075-42DFD60F6C85

“I don’t know…I’m rambling.”
“Sorry, I’m all over the place today.”
“Does any of this make sense?”
I often hear these types of statements from my clients.

E9F4DB66-DDBC-42E9-BE3E-23F237FB8225I love this image because it accurately shows my process as a therapist. As a client speaks, I listen and categorize and organize what is said with the information that I already know about them, or for new clients, things that I am getting to know about them.  I’m rarely “lost” or overwhelmed with information, and any new information that doesn’t fit into an existing ball starts a new one.

▪️Credit to Re-New Psychological Services, LLC

 

Dangling

B3FB919E-FF34-41CA-8ACC-E34E35CBA3CEJust sharing my life and present situation, as I try to adjust from one counselor of four years to another. I have to remember and remind myself that they are not the same.

I find it funny now that I often got irritated with my former counselor if the previous week’s session was not touched upon again. Let’s pick up where we left off at please, as I was still dealing with the thoughts and issues from the previous week. Most of the time, we did or she realized and understood the chaos it caused me, if not. Other times, we would cover many areas and panic came as I held up my hand, fingers hanging down and moving; she knew and understood when I felt I was dangling. No doubt she found me irritating but she hung in there with me. Too many issues in front of me to deal with and the chaos would come to the forefront. Stop the dangling!A7F0E4A9-8DE5-4D12-9C04-A0ACA8464D8B

Now, as I am with a new counselor, rarely do we pick up from the previous week’s session. With that, I had to ask her some questions recently. Although, I knew her ways were and will be different, I get it. I have grown through this transition although it has not been easy but I am not going to remain stuck.

So what if we don’t pick up on last week’s topic. Part of me is even shocked with that comment although I/we carry on. Asking questions of the counselor helped me get a better understanding of her, how she manages my records, etc. That’s just me. I have to have order somewhere in my mind but coming to the final conclusion, she is there to help me and I know my records are secure. Let’s move on.

D9046ADA-B82D-4B95-8D6A-33B2E1D883A9As a client, we are allowed to ask questions. Also, prior to meeting with a new counselor, we should do our own due diligence and research of him/her. End result is to trust and go forward. Then the role is reversed, as the counselor asks many questions and gets to know us with our private, personal, deep-dark secrets and a relationship is built between a counselor-client of trust. 51F8BCD1-4F15-44DA-B8A7-C1BD08B7F593It’s pretty awesome, especially when you can open up and share. Healing begins within you.

I feel that it is to your best interest to make the most of counseling, the time between sessions, to do research, read and trust the Lord to bring healing. Isn’t that why you are in counseling anyway? It is not just the counselor’s responsibility, it’s yours, too.

Pray not only for yourself to receive the therapeutic guidance from the counselor but for your heart to be open to receive and your ears and mind to hear. Pray, too, for the counselor to be open for the Lord to speak to them for and to you. There just might be some WOW moments and light to a dark corner of your life, at times.

A3B1CAEF-F72F-485B-8DD8-D1EA9B453A5ECounseling is not easy. Depending upon what you both are dealing with in these sessions, it is downright hard. Many times with my prior counselor, I have wanted to get up and leave in the middle of a session, other times never come back but I did because I was determined to move forward.  It was no surprise to her, as we discussed those facts often. Thankfully, she was mean enough to put up with me and I appreciated and loved her more for that reason.

So now as my new counselor and I get more familiar with one another, trust deepens and healing continues. I am looking forward to what lies ahead and how our counselor-client relationship will develop and if she pushes me (my buttons) to be the best person I can be. I think she will.

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If you are considering a counselor, hopefully this will help give you a glimpse of my experience. It is worth taking care of YOU, you have to. Wish you the best! ML

Journey of Life

947F91A9-B1D8-49C6-8138-5C2EEA15DF62Here I am, home from my counseling session and so thankful of having such great counselors as I deal with life. I would not be where I am today had it not been with each one.

Mental health awareness has been quite visible lately in the news and on Facebook of not denying or keeping your head in the sand that it does not exist. It does. Look around and listen to the news, there is mental health issues of all levels around us. Some being hidden by a mask or fake smile and those that are down right out there and may cause issues.

Why is there such a stigma of counseling and sadly in the church making people feel shame in going? Many years I secretly went to counseling almost an hour away to avoid my church and members from knowing I needed help. You know, those that will say I did not have enough faith in God. Those that will bring shame, which is why I went out of my way to go. No more!8DDBBD6E-CF15-41B4-BEFC-5BD3D2AC9032

I found myself, as I was leaving my counselor’s office the other day and several women were in the waiting room. I couldn’t help but think about them and wonder why they were there, too. Did they feel shame being there or did they just accept that they, too, need help. For a moment, and to be honest, I felt a judgment of them, just as many would and have in the past and/or in our experiences. Wrong! I captured that thought quickly realizing I just walked out of a counseling session. I am no better than them and we all need to support one another. It’s that stigma that latches on.  I’m sure others have had that of me.  While that quick lesson allowed me to see both sides, I politely smiled and wished them a good day. As we make these appointments and deal with life, that is self-care and much needed for me, you and others.  It’s okay!

We all have issues. Even counselors, doctors and so forth. I totally recommend seeing a counselor for issues or just to stay in tune with life and healing for yourself of past, present and for the future.  In my case, it started with marriage but nowadays it is to help me grow and heal some much-need broken places in my spirit, soul and body. I am a better person with counseling. Not having a spouse to relate to and cry on his shoulder or my close friends that do not live near, I have my counselors. Yes, counselors.

For this period in my life, I started with one to help me get over my last counselor of four years that left due to health issues.  We were dealing with abandonment issues in my life, yet I was abandoned by her. While not her fault, still it was and is still hard some days. Talk about a double whammy! Plus, I have another counselor to help me move forward in life, not so much focus on past counselor. Both have been good for me in my journey right now.  It’s been a good thing.

A2D1DCB8-345F-4FBF-9E47-A34CDC8843BAJust with my last appointment, she said that a poem reminded her of me of my past counseling experience, which I will share. Perfect. Again, I have had the best and thankful for what each one has done to help me grow, understand life, and even understand myself.

So, if you are considering to go see a counselor, do it. Give it time so each one can get familiar and build a relationship.  If after a time and there is no connection, change your counselor but do not quit taking care of you. There are some really good ones out there. Just know YOU MATTER and YOU are worth it.DE7BECC3-28B7-4B8B-83B3-C9265B356DA0

Just FYI, there is a lot of information on Pinterest regarding mental health, groups on Facebook and Google searches, too.

I Am Worthy

I Am Worthy!12BE7E16-A8D2-49AE-8B6F-B93188D0496F   You Are Worthy!

It has taken me years to get that in my thick skull to understand and feel I am worthy. I am sure I have wrote about this before, at some point.

At times regretting it took so long to get here but on the other hand, a relief that I am finally here. I am ME. The Lord knew me before I was even born, He had plans for me and what I was to face in life, never leaving me but loving me, just as I am.

25C9C74C-4032-4844-912D-F00358AAFA33So many times, I looked to others for my worth waiting for a compliment or to know they cared in some, small way or the hugs I craved. When received, my hope and worth in life became alive and joyful. Somebody cares for me. Sadly, short lived. The memories of that moment of high feeling that may last for days, comes down to trying to conjure up the memory or that same, sweet feeling and hearing words said directly to me. While I can remember, it is not the same. Sadness overcomes my soul for I need another fix. Somebody please tell me you care for me, hug me please as my mind is screaming, pat my arm so I can feel that touch again and burn it in my memory, I am desperate for connection.

I would never share those thoughts or words with anyone, always knowing I was desiring and screaming on the inside. In hopes one day, I would be loved by somebody and find my worth.

Thankfully, I had a counselor that heard the cries within and speaking of them with her, I no longer had to carry them alone. The Lord truly knew my heartache and allowed her to intervene. To share them brought embarrassment and shame but brought healing each time.

0917CC9A-78AD-4BC9-9154-22ED5C8E3B30The cage I was in of desperately wanting love and worth of others can only come from the Lord.  Releasing others from their attention and love that I required and hungered for only comes in small doses but receiving at times sometimes unexpectedly is so much sweeter.

I know without a doubt that joy, my sense of love, feeling special and worthiness is all from the Lord.554B51EB-EC85-4756-89E0-6041796A6FB7

When I don’t feel and know that within, my attention has wavered to people, not God. I always knew that deep down, but I thought it was easier to get and receive from those I can see and touch.

His Love is forever and ever.  It is where my love is focused upon that determines the outcome.

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870 Days

652B2586-29F0-48E6-A4E4-AB1FB25A3117I can honestly tell you, I dislike a part of the code of ethics between a counselor and client relationship.  I totally understand that the counselor’s personal life is private while the client shares their life and deepest, darkest secrets.  That’s fine because that is why you are there in counseling.  

While I do understand the boundaries during the process of counseling, I also understand it after counseling has ended between both but I just don’t like it.  The connection is no more, as if it never existed.

As I started counseling over four years ago, it recently ended due to health issues of my counselor.  Jokingly, although some seriousness in me, I have wondered maybe I caused her to have burnout. Possibly!?

With our time together, I found her to be one I could confide in and be honest with and that is exactly what you want in a counselor, a connection. While she maintained boundaries in her profession, I still considered her closer than my own sisters. I could talk to C16F158F-ACF3-4CF3-B616-32E1C8C0E1E6her in complete confidence, truly feeling she cared for me not only as a client but as a person. To be listened to, heard and understood, brings healing.  I have to say, she was one of the best.  I feel blessed to have had her in my life, when I needed her the most.

The word, had.  I had her in my life. Now I don’t. It’s that code of ethics that comes into play. Again, I really do understand but I really don’t like it. Okay, I am having a temper tantrum, and I’ve had a few.44590330-BB3A-43DD-86EE-727802A14440

At one time, a brief comment was made between us that no friendship relationship while counselor/client. Okay, fine. It was when she made her decision to close her office, it all became real and quite upsetting. Hoping now, at least we can become friends on Facebook to stay connected, was my hope. Nope!

Okay, now with that, a real temper tantrum because not only can we not be friends on Facebook, but no contact for three years. Three years!  As of today, that will be 870 days, but who is counting? Ha 6062824E-20AB-4CA3-93C2-A01347B364F0

Again, I do understand and I respect her in this matter. I just don’t like it. It’s like the song, ‘It’s my party and I’ll cry if I want to.’ Well, this is my blog and I’ll complain if I want to, while working through it all and having fun, too.  Getting through the grief.  It would not surprise her to know I have a countdown timer on my iPhone.  I also have one of my retirement date, which is definitely more days than I want to be reminded.  It works for me.

In three years, I guess the reasoning is that the facts spoken within her four office walls will be forgotten, she will forget me and I will forget her and life goes on as if we never knew one another.  Can that really be true?

For me, not possible. On my end, she will always be a part of my testimony. While I am adjusting to the abandonment part of this situation, I still have my moments of grief and missing our talks.

So, perhaps this will help somebody know of what to expect when considering counseling.

Even though we both go our separate ways, I feel the Lord led me to her at the right time. He prepared her in this area for me, others clients also, but He knew I would need her many years before I even entered her door.  That’s God!

8E1FED02-9CEB-4A34-A7AE-D82DB646EA89The Lord knows and will put the right people in your path.

I really miss her.  Sometimes I hope she reads my writings, perhaps to know I care and appreciatative but be encouraged, too, because she helped me be who I am today.

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