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DBT Session 3: Even more Distress Tolerance

So much on my mind this week!

DBT group was better this week. I told the group leader that I was fully triggered and they understandably said "We asked you if you were okay and you said yes" and pointed out there was no way they could know that the hospital is a trigger for me. Which I have only mentioned a few times and it is written in my file. So yes, there was totally no way that anyone could possibly know that. And in the future, I'll have to speak up and say "Can we not talk about hospitals?" I accept that I need to take care of myself, but the "but we had no idea" is kinda bullshit.


As for the "but you said you were okay." I explained that I couldn't ask for help, because when I've needed help I've been refused or in the case of medicine I'd been laughed at or mocked for it. So I don't ask, because I know I can help me, that I'm not going to let me down or reject me, but I can't let myself be vulnerable to ask because I can't deal with the humiliation of rejection or with the potential of being mocked.

The group leader told me she wasn't going to argue with me about that. Which I said "What do you mean? Because it's not an argument."

"I don't think that this is the time to argue with you about that. You believe that, so let's leave it there."

....? I don't even know what to do with that. I've debated examining it, but I'm going to write it off as simply a way to end a conversation.


We are still in distress tolerance, and I didn't find much of the new units helpful. I'm not saying it's bad. It works, but we've been over it in ERPS. The content makes sense:

Take care of yourself

Don't feel guilty about taking care of yourself

Examine the situation in the present (don't bring the past and future into it)

Distract yourself (visual, sound, movement, touch, etc)

Soothe yourself


Check the facts (only look at what you know, and don't make up what your don't know. e.g My friend went out without me. THEY MUST HATE ME. No, they simply went out.)


Know the things that make you feel good

Focus on one thing at a time (I knocked over the plant. I RUINED EVERYTHING. FUCK THERE IS DIRT EVERYWHERE AND LIFE IS TERRIBLE! No, just clean the dirt up.)


We learned most of this in ERPS, so I didn't really see anything new. Just an expanded version of what we already did.

Like in ERPS when I have my episodes or I question the tool, I find that no one really knows how to answer my question.


e.g We discussed how small things can make us super upset. Like spilling a glass of milk. You might start to torture yourself over the spilt milk. I'm so clumsy, why do bad things have to happen, I am so awful, I wasted milk etc etc. Instead, you put it in perspective. It's just a glass of milk, it's no biggie to clean it up. I've cleaned up milk before and I can handle it! And this works great for one or two things.


I asked. "But what if many things happen at once." I gave the example of the previous week and how I was triggered multiple times. What am I suppose to do then? I can't slow down time. I can't process all of it. I just shut down and start hallucinating.

"I can see that would be difficult."

There never seems to be any answers for the situations I want to conquer. Or maybe it's perfectly okay to melt down then. I don't know. I've always been told I am dramatic and an over reactor, so I don't what reaction is appropriate because all of my reactions are apparently wrong.


Even with the workplace harassment I'm experiencing I had to go online and ask groupthink how I should feel about it (I deleted the post and many thanks again for the help and support). I was scared and upset, but I was afraid to say anything because I was worried I was over reacting and I would look weak and dramatic. Turns out, I wasn't over reacting. Once I talked about it, and people in-charge and my co-workers took it seriously, I felt better because my feelings were right. I felt better because for once I wasn't silent about it. I need to learn how to take my feelings seriously and trust my instinct. Maybe I'll learn that here.

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