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#14971 - 05/05/03 01:07 AM male or female therapist?
tone Offline
Member

Registered: 04/22/03
Posts: 41
Loc: Canada
I need some advice guys. I am looking at getting some therapy. I don't want to go with a female therapist because I feel partly embarrasment to tell some things to a women and it makes me feel uncomfortable. On the other hand I would like to see a male therapist, despite the fact that the abuse was from a male. So I'm thinking that maybe I want a male therapist because I would put myself under the control of a man and subcontiously i like to be controlled. Does this make any sense. I am really mixed up on this.

_________________________
Exchange On a visit to England by Ghandi
Reporter:"what do you think of Western Civilisation,Mr.Ghandi?"
Ghandi: I think it would be a good idea.

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#14972 - 05/05/03 01:29 AM Re: male or female therapist?
Ken Followell Offline
President
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 12/30/01
Posts: 990
Loc: Bradenton, FL
Tone,

Both the therapists I have seen have ben male. even though it is men who have abused me. So I understand the mixed feelings you are having. I have also been to a couple retreats where there have been female therapist and they were great.

I would recommend meeting with several therapists without regard to their gender and see who you have the best "fit" with. If you are more comfortable with a male then my all means see that person, but do not discount what a female may have to offer you.

Find the right person to be your therapist, I think you will know them after you meet with hime or her. Good luck in your search.

Ken

_________________________
Ken Followell

Everything works out right in the end. If things are not working right, it isn't the end yet. Don't let it bother you, relax and keep on goin
- Michael C. Muhammad

"I get up. I walk. I fall down. Meanwhile, I keep dancing."
� Rabbi Hillel

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#14973 - 05/05/03 01:39 AM Re: male or female therapist?
Sick Puppy Offline
Member

Registered: 03/30/03
Posts: 300
Loc: Nowhere Land
It's a hard problem. With me I always think a female is going to f*ck with my head (this is what my mom did, among other things) and so I can't trust her, but with a male I am scared to be alone in the room with him because I think he will rape me. I guess it's just to weigh the pros/cons of one gender against the other and then see which one is best.

_________________________
And one day we will die
And our ashes will fly
From the aeroplane over the sea
But for now we are young
Let us lay in the sun
And count every beautiful thing we can see


Neutral Milk Hotel - In the Aeroplane Over the Sea

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#14974 - 05/05/03 02:45 AM Re: male or female therapist?
liminal Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/21/02
Posts: 40
Loc: Detroit Metro
Before i started therapy i did not want a male therapist at all, but ended up with one. I was pretty cynical and skeptical at first. My current therapist is also male and now i can say it doesn't matter anymore to me which gender my T is.

It may be good to consider going with the gender you are most uncomfortable with, as you won't have much choice but to work on the issues associated with that gender.


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#14975 - 05/05/03 06:46 AM Re: male or female therapist?
zadok1 Offline
Member

Registered: 11/05/02
Posts: 188
Loc: Ohio
my therapist was a male and openly gay. in fact he is a leader in promoting homosexual rights. i wouldnt have been totally comfortable telling anyone everything i have done, but i forced myself to. i went into therapy knowing they could only help if i was honest and open, and i promised myself that. sometimes it was very hard, but i always kept that promise.

the bottom line is that male or female, the therapist is simply a guide. the burden of healing is on you. you have to do the work to recover. you alone. holding back, and lying will only slow that down. i think find someone who feels comfortable and understanding, and kind of look at them as asexual if you can.

JMHO
Jeff

_________________________
The world is a dangerous place, not because of those that are evil, but because of those who do nothing about them- Albert Einstein

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#14976 - 05/05/03 07:21 AM Re: male or female therapist?
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
Tone:

All the guys have come up with some good points to ponder.

I was choosing male T's long before I even remembered my CSA. Maybe that's who was available.
But I don't think I would have been as comfortable
with a woman becuz T's deal with my feelings & my mind, and to echo Josh & his experience my mother,
tho she was also my prime sex perp, was also my prime emotional abuser & in a way that was worse &
she really f*cked with my head. My pdocs have also
all been male.

On the other hand tho most of my sexual abuse was by women, I could not stomach the thot of a male massage T, and I have a very good female one. Perhaps this is becuz my last, & only overtly physically violent, incident of CSA was being raped by 2 gay men, a couple.

Yet I have a male chiropractor, whom I really like tho I'm still a bit nervous with him at times. Of course I only take my shirt off in his office...

Yeah I'm rambling. I hope you can weigh out all the pros & cons, Tone, and just find the T that is best for you. Maybe this will help:

http://www.malesurvivor.org/resource/consumer.htm

Victor

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#14977 - 05/05/03 09:37 AM Re: male or female therapist?
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
I had a male for one to one therapy - he was superb, and now I'm in a group that's mediated by a woman, and she's just as good.

Don't worry about being graphic to a woman counsellor, they've heard it all before I promise you ! :rolleyes:

Just go with whoever make you feel comfortable, as Zadok says -
Quote:
the therapist is simply a guide. the burden of healing is on you.
It's YOU doing the hard work.

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#14978 - 05/05/03 09:51 AM Re: male or female therapist?
PeteT Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/03/03
Posts: 28
Loc: Michigan
Tone:
My CSA was by a man. My T came highly recommended by the the company's T that I revealed my SA too. My T was also abused by a man and that help me because he understood what I had been through. It was important that the person that I was to reveal my most inner secrets too knew how I felt inside. He also was a minister for a number of years before he went into his own private practice so I felt I could trust him.
The main thing is you have to fine a person your comfortable with. Someone who can guide you, but knows what direction to take you in. Remember though your the one that has to do the actual work and you are paying him/her to help you. If you don't think you are getting the help that you are paying for, first of all tell him/her and second you always have the option of finding someone else.

_________________________
Pete

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#14979 - 05/05/03 10:25 AM Re: male or female therapist?
James_dup1 Offline


Registered: 04/13/02
Posts: 1332
Loc: Wyoming
Tone,
I think Pete brought up an important fact in looking for a "T", finding one that you can open up to and tell things that you may not have ever said. See I also was (we just move and I'm still looking for a "t" I like) seeing a "t" that had also lived through CSA, however mine was a female. I felt able to open up to her because on my first visit she told me about herself and in doing so she could have just as easily been talking about me and how I was feeling at the time. Now it may not be important to find one that had been abused the way we have, I think the important part is..
1. Can I trust this person
2. Can I learn to trust this person
3. Does this person have a real concern for my recovery
4. Do I feel comfortable with this person

IMHO.....the gender of the "t" isn't the issue... the true issue is can we as adult's that lived through CSA truely open up and trust someone. In finding someone male or female that we can feel able to trust is the first step in the road to recovery. After all how many of us dont trust anyone not even ourselves?

Ok now Im rambleing so I'll stop here. I hope this helps.

Good luck my brother wolf.

James

_________________________
I have more issues than Rolling Stone!


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#14980 - 05/05/03 11:21 AM Re: male or female therapist?
Marc Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 256
Loc: Tucson, AZ
Guys,

Along these same lines, I know especially as a survivor of Physical, emotional and sexual abuse; your trust becomes REALLY f%$ked up.

How do you know when you trust the T? I've been seeing mine now for two months. He seems compassionate, intelligent, insightful; In the back of my mind I think that, "I've seen all this sh&t before" and "there's a lot of bad therapist's out there, what makes this guy any different?".

I don't want to rush my therapy anymore 'cause I know that's not good and I know that I need to REALLY deal with my trust issues in a big way.

How long should I wait 'til I know that I've got "the right one".

Tone - I've had four "T's" throughout my life. All have been male. I don't think I look at gender as the decision as to wether they are a good choice. I feel that I know myself enough to realize that my relationship with my dad and the physical abuse has left me with 'authority' issues on that side so I choose males don't know yet if this is good or bad though.


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#14981 - 05/05/03 01:17 PM Re: male or female therapist?
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
Quote:
How do you know when you trust the T?
Tough question, but I know for me trust had to be built gradually over relatively long periods of time. MY CSA came up after a session, within the last 2 years, in which I had been discussing with my T other sexual issues. I had just started having flashbacks. I trusted my T enuf to tell him about that the next week. But it took awhile before I got even to that point. I don't know how. Just kept going & talking...

Quote:
Tone - I've had four "T's" throughout my life. All have been male. I don't think I look at gender as the decision as to wether they are a good choice. I feel that I know myself enough to realize that my relationship with my dad and the physical abuse has left me with 'authority' issues on that side so I choose males don't know yet if this is good or bad though.
Marc, I've also had four T's, all male, all spread over the last 13 years. I have authority issues with men and with women, of different kinds
For me it was a matter of what would probably mess with my mind the least based on what had messed with it the most in the past. Thus I deliberately chose male T's.

Depends on the person, situation, & lots more.

Victor

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#14982 - 05/05/03 03:35 PM Re: male or female therapist?
Marc Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 04/25/03
Posts: 256
Loc: Tucson, AZ
Quote:
I just started having flashbacks. I trusted my T enuf to tell him about that the next week. But it took awhile before I got even to that point. I don't know how. Just kept going & talking...
So if I understand you Vic, it just kind of happened?


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#14983 - 05/05/03 04:19 PM Re: male or female therapist?
Nathan LaChine Offline
Webmaster
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/22/03
Posts: 5381
Loc: Washington State
Tone,

I have never seen a T and I do not plan on seeing one. My only advice is that you listen to your self and find a T that you feel safe and cared for. I would not getto hung up on the sex of the T I would go with the one that makes you feel safe and that you can trust to help you heal.


Lots of love, young wolf pup Nathan


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#14984 - 05/05/03 04:41 PM Re: male or female therapist?
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
Quote:
So if I understand you Vic, it just kind of happened?
Seemingly so. But really I don't believe in coincidences much.

I think my mind was being set up to clear this SA crap out:

1) by 11 years of therapy which cleared out the layers of crap on top of it;

2) by all my years of living with the agony of dissociating & suppressing from it tho way deep down I felt something was wrong & even had a fair idea what it was;

3) by gradually working up to talking with T's about deeper & deeper as well as more & more sex-related issues;

4) by the last visit of my mother after which my wife & daughters pointed out to me that she evidently hadn't changed much in her emotionally incestuous & narcisstic ways (tho they used different words);

5) by 9-11;

6) by hearing more & more about CSA, like when I went online to deal with my sex addiction; and

7) by the love of my wonderful wife & daughters.

All this & more just made me ready (as I could be, tho sometimes I wonder) to remember, face up to having been SA, and becoming a true survivor.

So no Marc I guess it didn't really just happen. It's just that I did nothing specifically to make it happen since I didn't know what I was supposed to be making happen in the first place.

Understand?

Good, then explain it to me! \:D

Yet as I said deep down inside I knew & I think all those years of therapy, psychiatry, running from doctor to doctor (and DOC to DOC), etc were ways of trying to sort it out & get it out. Just it was buried so deep & the clues & feelings so covered up it took awhile. A long while...

Victor

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#14985 - 05/05/03 04:51 PM Re: male or female therapist?
Tom S. Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Nashville, Tn
Tone;
If you have liberty to choose and the ability to actually participate in the selection process of your counselor, consider yourself truly blessed, and simply go back to who ever you find yourself able to TRUST. Keep it simple and stop trying to analyize the situation. Don't worry about man or woman any more than you would old or young or short or tall, etc. And for God sake don't let something like a PhD or some other meaningless credential confuse your perception.
Do you choose friends based on this same process of factors outside of the individuals control? We can choose how we act and react, but we cannot choose age, sex, race, etc. Consider what is important, and go back to whoever does not try to touch you or insist on what to discuss, let alone how you are 'supposed' to feel about it. Look them in the eyes like you would a 8 year old and see if you can simply TRUST them.
I personally have been praying for a couple years now for just the opportunity I've described. I know govt run health care in Canada is much different than corporate insurance/govt run programs here in the good ole' US, but damn, I would never have thought you can actually shop for a counselor like a pair of shoes. I'd jump at the opportunity to be able to just go back to a LCSW I saw once, instead of whoever happens to be assigned by my insurance carrier for 4 visits. I would really love just one time the opportunity to talk about being felt up by a 'theraputic counselor', irregardless if it was a man or woman.
Your dollar may be devalued against mine, but if I knew I could have an opportunity like yours, I'd consider getting a snow mobile and moving north.
Tom S.

[everybody is doing quotes, so here is mine]
Quote: In this time of economic uncertainity, it's easy to see who is actually concerned about providing health care, and who is in it for the money. Tom S.

_________________________
' None are so enslaved as those falsely led to believe they are actually free '

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#14986 - 05/05/03 05:24 PM Re: male or female therapist?
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
One thing this topic does make clear is the difference in the way we get to see therapists.

If we go through our respective health services we seem to get a poor deal whicever side of the Atlantic we're on.
You get to battle your way through insurance companies and then seem to get given a therapist for a few sessions.
We get a few sessions with a 'general' therapist through our free health care ( it sounds good but the reality can be very different ! )

Over here, in a smaller, more densly populated country charities provide a great deal of mental health care.
Where I live in Shropshire we have a charity called Axis ( which I now volunteer for ) which provides about 5 or 6 very skilled therapists, who specialise in adult survivors, for a county that's only 1400 square miles with a population of 283,000.
Other charities obviously pick up some survivors as well through doing work with drink, drugs etc.

So I count myself very lucky, the wait to see a therapist is short - a few weeks at most - and they work evenings.
Also they just ask for donations from clients so if you're broke you get free therapy, although most people pay something; even if it's just the cost of the coffee.

The UK has many other similar organizations for survivors, and being dedicated, and run by survivors, they tend to do a good job.

The problem with the US. is the size of the place, it would be hard to set up a system like this in rural Montana !

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#14987 - 05/06/03 12:05 PM Re: male or female therapist?
Tom S. Offline
Member

Registered: 04/15/03
Posts: 161
Loc: Nashville, Tn
Dave;
I don't mean to be contradictory, and perhaps I don't fully understand, but rural Montana has a far better system of dedicated health care providers, of all modalities, than does any American inner city. Any resources in urban areas are having the life blood sapped right out of them. You could wait with broken bones for days to be seen in an ER in some large cities, due to the extreme over extension of available personel and resources.
No one is willing to agree with this, and all the reasearch is kept from public view, but if the facts and figures are examined, and the rate that providers are being paid vs actual costs, you would discover that a gross majority of health care, be it in hospitals or home based, is NOT paid for in this country. That equates to charity in most instances in my area of middle Tenn. I give wherever I can, even like the time I spend here on this site.{I can't do much harm here !}
I stated this earlier and I want to be heard, that the largest hospital in the entire state of Tennessee, closed about 4 years ago, and remaining solvent hospitals were required to take over it's smaller subsidiaries in the other cities. It's GONE.
Even though I am personally blessed with the only real health care insurance left in Tennessee, the provision of 'therapist' as you call them, is horribly left with trash that can't find employment in any other area. And what remaining functional counselors left won't bill for insurance, because the rate of reimbursement does not cover the additional expense of accounting and clerical necessary for simply getting paid. And that leaves 'therapy' like other forms of health care, to only the wealthiest who can afford to self insure and pay cash at the rate of $95+ a session as they go. For everyone else, it's simply dangerous to go on blind faith and trust some person claiming to be a professional counselor even if they can produce some kind of dime store degree. Anyone in this area considering therapy needs to check every resource available including the board of liscensure and the sex offenders registry before walking in and turning over any degree of control to a counselor, be it in a clinic or mental health center, or under a shade tree.
If you could find a group, there is a degeree of safety in the numbers, providing you could find a group, let alone one with a facilitator who has any sense of focus.
No, I'm sorry fellows, but I don't think you guys know just how blessed you actually are.
Tom S.
Quote: In this time of economic uncertianity, it's easy to see who is interested in providing health care, and who is in it for the money.

_________________________
' None are so enslaved as those falsely led to believe they are actually free '

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