Q. I’ve been diagnosed with PTSD, depression, and anxiety. I’ve been given Lexapro and Baclofen to help. I am very good at avoidance and numbing. Right now I’m at a point in our therapy where I need to be willing to acknowledge feelings and accept having them. It is creating a huge amount of stress in my life. I feel worse than I did when I started. I’m supposed to try to have compassion for myself, but it disgusts me to think about that. I also SI, and have been doing it alot this week to try to gain some control of the chaos in my head. I haven’t told him this (he knows I’ve engaged in SIB prior), because I don’t want to disappoint him. What he says makes sense, but I don’t know if I have the ability to see myself as a person worthy of love and stuff. In a perfect world, I wouldn’t exist… but I have 2 children and I have to figure this out for them. My question is: do I need more treatment (like an inpatient sort of thing), or if not, how do I get him to help me?
I do not know if you need inpatient care but you do need to be more open with your therapist. He is not able to help you fully if you are keeping information from him. He needs to know the information that you have just provided in order to best assist you. He cannot read your mind and by withholding information you are doing yourself a major disservice.
You may be at a place in therapy where real change is about to occur. This could explain your resistance and your desire to self-injure.
Any good therapist would not expect change to occur overnight. Your therapist likely (if he is a good therapist) does not expect you to have the full ability to see yourself as a person worthy of love. Change takes time. Therapy takes time and it can take years for someone to change or correct their thinking.
You say that what he says makes sense to you. Based on your letter, the therapy does seem to be having a positive effect. You have two children who need you to be well, as you recognize. It’s time to open up to your therapist and let him know what is truly going on with you. Being fully open with him is the only way he can help you. There is no other way. Thanks for writing.
Am I Getting Worse?
Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW
Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW is a licensed psychotherapist and Assistant Professor of Social Work and Forensics with extensive experience in the field of mental health. She works in private practice with adults, adolescents and families. Kristina has worked in a large array of settings including community mental health, college counseling and university research centers.
APA Reference Randle, K. (2018). Am I Getting Worse?. Psych Central.
Retrieved on May 24, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2008/03/23/am-i-getting-worse/
Last updated: 8 May 2018 Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 8 May 2018 Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.