Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Therapy #3: My fleeting mind

Today was my third therapy session since I decided to address my "sophomore year event" in therapy. Therapy has gotten a little weird though, at least from my perspective.

For the second week in a row,
I have spent the days in between sessions going over what happened and trying to process it, but the second I step into that room, it's like I've taken a quaalude. It takes me forever to string words together, and I end up forgetting the question and/or losing track of my point. I don't know if it's that I am choosing my words so carefully that I forget what I'm saying. Or if it's that I don't even know what I'm trying to say. All I know is that whenever I begin talking, my mind just goes blank, and then - poof! - the 45-minute session is over.

The minute I become aware that the session is about to end, I snap out of my haze. I get a surge of emotions and once again I am aware of the things that I wanted to address in the session. So bizarre. And so frustrating.

I did begin to touch on a few of the things that have been on my mind during today's session, the first being the ups and downs I've been experiencing. I'm pretty petrified of talking about "ups" and "downs" and feelings of "lack of control" because that's how I ended up in the psychiatric ward only three days following that night. An experience that reinforced my feeling, my fear, of not having control of myself. Control over my "disordered" thoughts. My "disordered" feelings. That is, of course, unless I downed a slew of pills.

Once again, I find myself really nervous about being diagnosed as bipolar. I'm trying to make sense of the intense emotions that come flooding out when I least desire. Trying to make sense of what happened that night. What that experience meant to me and why. If what's happening in my mind were to be attributed to a mental disorder, how would I ever make sense of all this? How would I ever learn to trust my feelings and thoughts surrounding that night? How would I ever learn to trust myself again?

My kooky cats
Perhaps that's why I keep clamming up in therapy.

There is a part of me that is a tad - let me emphasize, a TAD - nervous that I am bipolar. Eeck, I am fighting my desire to delete that last sentence. Wow, that is difficult for me to admit.

I was told by so many people during that difficult period of my life that I was, in fact, bipolar. I have had to work hard to remove their claims from my mind. Could they have been correct? [Cringe] I started taking Zoloft (SSRI-antidepressant) a few weeks ago. Could starting this medication have reignited my bipolar tendencies? Could it be that my bipolar swings have merely been in remission the past 5 years? My dad is bipolar - thankfully, it's been under control for years now - but they say it's a genetic disorder. Could I actually be "just like [my] father," the accusation my mom tossed at me growing up when I acted unfavorably? I never understood whether the insult was intended for me or my father. I guess both, haha :)

I don't think it's necessarily the thought of being bipolar that I fear the most. I think perhaps I'm mostly fearful that I would lack the strength to believe myself if a doctor were to suggest that I have this disorder. That I would lack the strength to stand up for myself and claim my emotions as mine.

My emotions regarding what happened that night so many years ago have caused me much distress and confusion. The emotional response in me was strong. Really strong. It was nothing that I'd ever experienced. Those emotions did not feel like they belonged to me. I had absolutely no control over them. They controlled me. Caused me to leave school. I tried to rationalize them, but I've never been able to accept that my event warranted the extreme emotions and tainted thoughts that I experienced following it. The extreme fear that encompassed my every move. The paranoia. The depression. Ohhh, the depression.

I am a very reflective person, always aiming to make sense of my emotions and things in my life, but I am truly stumped by the magnitude of my emotions surrounding that night. Those dirty and conflicting emotions that prevent me from letting go of what happened.

To my credit, I have accepted that the dip shit knowingly violated my body. That sneaky, conniving bastard. You see, I am no longer that naive 19-year old girl. That naive girl who trusted too much, who always saw the best in people. The girl who stuck up for A.T. when others noted that something was a little off about him. I had to let her go.

Have I fully accepted the new me? No. But maybe, just maybe, if I can make sense of all this, I can learn to like her, too.


  1. Your Kooky cats are pretty. I bet the rotten on on her back it a stinker. LOL

    I'm glad you are trying to deal with the emotions from that night. I know how hard it is to talk in front of a therapist. Monday will be my 5th visit. I also become sort of blank when I am there. Before I get there and after I leave I am overwhelmed with things to talk about but somehow the connection between brain and mouth gets severed while I am there. I am beginning to think I am distracting myself mentally with all the crap bouncing around in my melon.

    I have a suggestion and it's something that I am going to try. During the week each day I am going to write a very brief description of what I want to talk about on a piece of paper and when I go I will hand her the list and let her choose. I don't know if it will help me but it's worth a try.

    Melanie, keep up with the therapy. I hear it will get easier and clearer.


  2. Hi Jaime,
    Thank you so much for the encouragement. I, too, have been thinking about writing stuff down for therapy - maybe even printing out some of what I write here. Or, at least just having it there for me to reference in case I blank. I know what you mean about the disconnect between the mouth and the melon, haha. It's much easier for me to write about these things than talk about them, that's for sure! I'll report back how it works this week. Good luck with your session as well! xxxx

  3. P.S. The kooky cats say "thank you"! I've become a little bit of a crazy cat lady since my husband moved :)