What to do when you hate the treatment protocol for your disease?
(**Trigger warning for all the mental health things.**)
Over the last 10 years, I’ve spent a good 8 years on and off in weekly or bi-weekly therapy. When I first went (Therapist 1) it was to relieve symptoms of depression and figure out what the hell was going on.
It was like opening Pandora’s Box.
Skip to 3 years later. The first 2 years were mostly positive but nothing too interesting was figured out. Then I really started to talk about how things were growing up. The transference got out of control because I finally got in touch with my anger, and holy crap did it start to flood out like an open fire hydrant. She (therapist 1) couldn’t handle it - as my therapist she was taking a big brunt of my anger (heightened by the transference, but we had issues between us that had never been properly addressed that were legitimate reasons for me to be angry). I felt like I was loosing my mind. I had several suicide attempts. I also couldn’t afford her fee anymore because the modus operandi was always to have extra sessions when I was feeling vulnerable and this led to months of enormous bills that I simply couldn’t afford and had no idea how I was going to pay.
Then on my 4th or 5th attempt and 2nd visit to the emergency room, she terminated me. On a phone message while I was in the hospital (I got the message while in the hospital). I was referred to a community service where they offered sliding scale payments that previously she had said she wouldn’t refer me to because you didn’t get to choose your therapist to find a good fit. But now that I was poor (money wise and probably seen as a less than ideal client) I guess she felt that it was good enough. I had one last anti-climatic session with her where nothing was really addressed.
So I started with therapist #2. Thankfully, I was assigned to someone with a lot of experience who is known to be good. She was competent and caring. But I felt so abandonned, angry and betrayed by the previous therapist that i couldn’t engage in the process anymore. What if I dumped a whole bunch of time and money to be abandoned again? (FYI - I was physically abandonned by one parent, and emotionally abandoned/neglected by the one who stayed and raised me). What the fuck was the point of all this talking if I never had a corrective experience? Sure I had insight, but not an experience to draw on that was different from what I had experienced growing up.
So I tried with the new therapist. For almost 3 years off and on. I’ve been off now for almost a year because the whole thing was so stalled and felt so useless that I stopped booking appointments. I was so tired of talking and trying to make connections to why I was feeling a certain way and what were the triggers.
But recently, I’ve been feeling really isolated and lonely. Pretty much the exact same way I felt when I first went into therapy all those years ago. It feels like zero process has been made. I’m medicated now that helps to stave off the suicidal feelings, but there is no one now that knows my internal life because I don’t have any close friends that I’ve talk to this stuff about. Whenever I’ve tried, people have always reacted poorly (people who say there is no stigma in having depression/mental illness can go shove it, I’ve rarely had a good experience with showing friends even a smidgen of what really goes on). I’m social, I go out, I have a good friend group - but no significant other (I’ve been single for a very long time) - no one that I feel like I can really talk to. But I’m loath the idea of paying someone $100 to listen to me. And the whole process of interviewing a bunch of people and telling my life story over and over again until I find someone I like...ugh...why can’t initial consultations be free?!? Or reduced in price? Free initial consultations are pretty standard in all kinds of industries.
So hence the title - considering going to therapy to help heal the wounds from old therapy with a new therapist. The whole idea makes me tired and want to take a nap.