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#201152 - 01/24/08 03:11 PM My "therapist" has utterly confused me :(
Minute2Minute Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/11/08
Posts: 70
Loc: MB, Canada
I had a therapy session today and I am feeling utterly confused about what my focus should be. He didn't downplay the sexual abuses I suffered at the hands of my brother (for roughly 6 years), but he wanted to "put them aside" and focus on the physical/emotional/mental abuses of my Grandmother (as my primary parental care giver. He indicated that the impact of her actions may have been more detrimental to me because, as a "parent", she was supposed to be responsible for my care and safety as opposed to my brother who was "only in a position of power". I know that the two of them are horribly linked to my shame and sense of worthlessness, but he is of the impression that her treatment of me is more at the root of my problem than the sexual abuse. Since this was only my second session with him, I'm extremely concerned about whether his analysis holds merit. His background is mostly based in "relationships". While he has worked with several victims of CSA, that doesn't necessarily mean I trust his abilities. I don't trust anyone anyway, but I know that I have to be conscious of the relationship I build with my therapist as it will be one of the most powerful ones I develop as I learn and heal. Yes, my Gran was very physically abusive. Yes, she constantly reminded me how worthless and stupid I was. Yes, she was responsible for destroying much of self-worth and self-image. However, I get the sense that he feels the sexual abuses were more "icing on the cake of emotional destruction" rather than the cake itself because of her assumed role as "parent" so the abandonment issue is more powerful than the shame of the sexual abuse by my brother.

Does this focus in treatment ring true to anyone? I know that I will have to face the impacts of both people on my life, I'm just not sure if I'm making a mountain out of a molehill or if I should really be concerned about the direction of the therapy. I know I am guilty of over-analyzing things, but if I allow myself to "go with the flow" and it takes me in the wrong direction, then I'm pretty sure I run the risk of not actually healing. My options are pretty limited where I live, so I may be stuck with him for a while. I would just like to know if anyone has had similar experiences with a therapist.


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#201153 - 01/24/08 03:23 PM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Minute2Minute]
TJ jeff Offline

Moderator
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/07/04
Posts: 3369
Loc: Northern Wisconsin
M2M,

sorry I missed you in chat - I'd stepped away from the keyboard for just a few minutes...

I'd like to type a whole book in response to what you wrote here because much of it rings in my ears of the very same road that I traveled down just a few years back when I was in T - but I've got to get myself to work in just a short bit... - I'll try to write more tomorrow - just wanted to let you know though that "both" of the issues - the SA and gran - they both need to be worked on - yes - but it needs to be done on your scedule - not his - what you feel deep inside that you need to be working on is the thing that you should be working on - you need to explain this to your T - he needs to know what you feel inside - do not let him guide you into things that you are not feeling

got to run - but i will try to write more tomorrow

TJ jeff

_________________________
Who will cry for the little boy? - I will... - Antwone Fisher

Abuse happens in silence/isolation - Recovery happens only when that silence/isolation is broken...

TJ's History

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#201154 - 01/24/08 03:24 PM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Minute2Minute]
Freedom49 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/30/07
Posts: 2723
Loc: Washington State
M2M,
I understand your concern but I think your therapist may be on to something. You grandmothers crushing your self esteme and self worth would have made you completely vulnerable and open for your brothers attack on you. I doubt he would have been successful or as successful if you had been strong, self confident and not easily duped. At least at some point you might have had the strength to stand up to him and tell someone or to tell him to F.O.. The combination of her destroying your self confidence and self worth allowed your brother to move in for the kill so to speak. I would not be afraid to go with your therapist on this one for a while anyway and see what happens. You know that both issues are connected, and have to be dealt with anyway and you will be stronger in dealing with the CSA if your self confidence and ego are in good shape. Just a thought.


Roger



Edited by Freedom49 (01/24/08 03:28 PM)

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#201155 - 01/24/08 03:25 PM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Minute2Minute]
James_dup1 Offline


Registered: 04/13/02
Posts: 1332
Loc: Wyoming
M2M,

Have you read Ken's guide to shoping for a T? If not here's the link, you may want to read and then go back and ask the questions listed there. Even if he has worked with a "few" in the past doesnt mean he understands what is best.

http://www.malesurvivor.org/ArchivedPages/singer1.html

Just remember that he works for you. You have a right to ask why he would rather go this direction then work on the CSA first. If you do ask him questions and he gets pissy I would think about finding a new T.

Hope this helps,
James

_________________________
I have more issues than Rolling Stone!


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#201174 - 01/24/08 05:31 PM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Freedom49]
Lazarus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/01/07
Posts: 851
Loc: Below the radar, USA
M2M,

I know the choice your T is asking you to make is difficult, and it may not be necessary to chose one over the other at all. However, I have to agree with Roger;

Originally Posted By: Freedom49
...both issues are connected, and have to be dealt with anyway and you will be stronger in dealing with the CSA if your self confidence and ego are in good shape. Roger


While reading the other posts I hadn't thought of this, and it makes sense to me. What do you think?

Regards,

Lazarus

_________________________
"That which does not kill us, surely makes us stonger." - Neitsche

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#201231 - 01/25/08 12:18 AM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Lazarus]
Minute2Minute Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 01/11/08
Posts: 70
Loc: MB, Canada
After taking some to time to reflect on my session, and having discussed it with my wife (no ring on her finger after 20 years together...hmmm...commitment issue?), I may have inadvertantly stumbled onto the very idea that you touched on Roger - the abandonment and crushed self-esteem at the hands of my Grandmother may have opened the door for the predatory behavior of my brother. I was already "broken" when he started his abuse. And to some degree, I have been thinking more of what she did than what he did. This was only my second session, so much of what's in my head is still something of a dog's breakfast. I guess I have to try to go with the flow until things start making sense. I will have to be patient and see where these sessions take me, and where I take myself. And thanks for the advice TJ: I will try to take care that I am guiding the session, not him. I didn't feel that he was guiding the discussion, but I was unsure of what he actually picked up on when I was talking. I have very little in the way of options for therapy in my community, but that doesn't mean I'm not willing to travel to get help better suited to my needs. In many respects, the support and information I've received from this site has been a godsend. No, it won't replace a professional therapist, but I have found a safe place that I haven't found anywhere else.

I thank you all from the bottom of my heart.


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#201376 - 01/25/08 07:24 PM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Minute2Minute]
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
M2M,

TJ Jeff says he will get back to you in greater detail, so I'll leave that stuff to him and just stress a general point. It's really important to be communicating with your T. If he suggests something that doesn't seem to apply to you or doesn't feel "right" in some way, just come right out and tell him.

A good T will appreciate your candor; it makes it easier for him to help you if he knows you will speak up if something seems to be off-base. We may have similar issues, but what works for us will also depend on our own unique backgrounds and personalities. And by speaking up you not only help your T help you, you also empower yourself and regain part of the control over your life that you lost all those years ago.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#201443 - 01/26/08 01:51 AM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Minute2Minute]
Eric5 Offline
New Here

Registered: 12/31/07
Posts: 27
Loc: Pennsylvania, USA
See where this goes. I think they may want to get the grandmother memories dealt with before going deep into your other wound so you can have a stable mental platform from which to really feel the heartache without distraction.


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#201627 - 01/26/08 08:44 PM Re: My "therapist" has utterly confused me :( [Re: Eric5]
Lazarus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/01/07
Posts: 851
Loc: Below the radar, USA
I totally agree with Roger and with Larry.

Advice No 1 The most important thing in therapy is that You have to be completely honest; about your feelings, about your history... you have to give every piece of information you can if your T or anybody else will be able to offer reasonable advice. If you hold the least little thing back, it could be the keystone that causes the entire facade to crumble. You will never know which piece is important and which is not, but with out the whole picture, nobody can tell what may help you best.

Advioe No 2 Also know that no one is perfect; not you or me, and not our therapists. You will have to help them figure you out, and if they are sill clueless, you may have to find someone else. But you'll never know if Therapy can help you unless you adhere to Advice No 1.

Respectfully submitted,

Lazarus

_________________________
"That which does not kill us, surely makes us stonger." - Neitsche

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