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    My take on Psychotherapy for fm and depression
    Marylyce posted:
    I am wondering if anybody has similar thoughts on therapy like I do. It seems that they tackle your way of thinking (cognitive behaviour) and tell you to get in touch with your feelings. I feel sad or anxious more then I care too but it seems like the therapist gives me more worry thoughts. Last time I had a session I cried uncontrollably as she told me 2 stories from people. One was about a patients mother dying. That hit me the hardest. That made me worse cause I fear the loss. Does anyone get more worried or get depressed more after seeing a mind doctor? She told me you have to be conscious of your negative thoughts in order to change them to positives but I find myself thinking all day and getting upset with my thoughts and feelings. I don't let them go.They just give me more to think about. I just don't seem to be benefiting enough. I think I don't understand therapy and should ask more questions . She tries to help with the pain but I don't think she is trained in this nature of pain. Kind of a personal issue but I thought this would be a good safe place to bring it up.
    maggiethedoglover responded:
    Hi Marylyce,

    I am not in psychotherapy but it sounds as if it is counterproductive for you. FM is real, not in your head. I don't know all of the details of why you were referred to therapy so maybe I am missing something. I would have a frank discussion with my doctor about the reasons behind the referral and possibly end it.

    What does your therapist say when you tell her how you feel? Remeber, you are the one paying her through your insurance so she works for you. Question her methods if they are not working for you!

    Maybe you just need a new anti-depressant. Vitamin D3 also helps.

    Good luck!

    Soft hugs,

    Life is a shipwreck but we must not forget to sing in the lifeboats - Voltaire
    mymyrt replied to maggiethedoglover's response:
    Dear Marylyce, Maggie is right on the money, I'm not clear if you're seeing a psychologist or psychiatrist. In either case, you should NEVER FEEL WORSE when you leave that person's office. Having worked in the mental health field for many years, I have seen the damage that can be done by either or both professionals. It sounds as though you are seeing a social worker or a psychologist, and many times, more times than not, I'm afraid, we as patients become fodder for the mill (gossip), both personal and professional. It takes time to build trust with any therapist/doctor, and you sound very fragile, very closed off due to timidity and shame, and this therapist should never heap others' sadness, shame, fear, in fact, should not share anything of her other patients' situations. I'm sure (I hope) that she isn't using names as there are HIPPA laws to protect all of us. You need to find someone else to help you. You also need to contact your insurance company to voice your feelings about these sessions, as this person is getting very well-paid while you are feeling worse. If this person is not prescribing meds, then she is not a mind doctor. You also do need, as Maggie said, to tell your doctor about this. Are you on antidepressants? I'm sorry, I'm not familiar with your situation, you may have posted this already. And of course, I am not diagnosing you, I am going on work and personal experience.

    I hope you can get the correct help soon. Don't continue seeing this person because she is the wrong one for you.

    Good luck, I know how hard this is. Been there, several times.

    Hugs and feel better.

    Knowledge is power.
    cwalker608 responded:
    Hi Marylyce,

    I'm a licensed psychologist so your post caught my attention. It's not uncommon to dig up disturbing feelings in therapy. But a good therapist will help to provide some closure to each session so that you don't walk out of there feeling worse than when you came in. I'm mystified over why she would have told you those stories. Did they seem to have a point? If not, that's a red flag about her general skill level. Chronic pain is a really specialized area of psychotherapy. Even as a fibromyalgia sufferer and a clinician, I don't feel qualified to treat chronic pain.

    What are your therapist's credentials and areas of expertise? How do you feel about her generally? If you have a good working relationship with her otherwise and feel like she may be helping, then perhaps this was just an isolated bad session. If you feel good about your working relationship with her, then I would recommend that you talk with her about this issue at your next session. Find out how comfortable she is working with chronic pain and whether she is willing to learn about fibromyalgia (you might even suggest books or websites that you think will give her a good understanding).

    Being a psychologist has been a detriment to my acceptance of my illness. I recognized some of the symptoms 15 years ago when I was in graduate school. But I convinced myself that I was imagining things. Even when my symptoms began interfering with my functioning, I still believed that they were stress-related. I even convinced my MD that all I needed to do was to manage my stress better! I was dumbfounded when my anxiety level started creeping up inexplicably and none of the cognitive-behavioral exercises were working. It took me a while to recognize that it wasn't just an issue of mind over matter and that something really was wrong.

    I do think that therapy can be helpful in reducing stress and improving quality of life for fibromyalgia patients. But it would do that for cancer patients too. It won't get rid of their cancer cells, though. Neither will it eradicate whatever dysfunctional neurological process is causing our brains to misfire so badly and be oversensitive to every possible sort of stimuli.

    Perhaps this isn't the therapist for you. Or perhaps psychotherapy isn't part of your fibromyalgia treatment toolkit. Keep searching for what works for you.
    fibroinsd responded:
    I am certainly not a therapist...but I do know people that have gone through it...and it does seem that at first they say things like "This isn't working for me"....or things...similar to what you have said...and then after all "clicks.."...So, since I don't know how long you have gone...or more about is hard to say...

    The thing is, that I would say to your therapist...exactly what you said here...What you said is important...and I think could be part of the therapy...It could be that she is bringing up things that are uncomfortable for you...and those things need to be dealt with..

    Or, it could be that this is just part of negative thinking that needs to change...

    I find it interesting that you said you "fear the loss"...and I assume you mean of losing your mom...that sounds like something important for you to talk to her about...

    I know it isn't an easy process, but it is I would tell you to hang in there...and really try to figure out what is going on that gives you negative thoughts and fearfulness...We all have things, that I think could be helped with please don't feel alone..

    And, yes...I don't think your FM is going to be "cured" by therapy...but you might find better ways of dealing with it..

    I give you tons of hugs...I know this isn't easy...but hang in there!

    Let's put the fun back in dysfunctional !- Mary Englebright
    jrae922 responded:
    Hi Mary,

    I think everyone has given you some great thoughts already, but I wanted to put my two cents in. I just recently met with a psychiatrist for the first time in my life to help me with medication management. It sounds like you need to be on an anti-depressant if you are not already on one; if you are, perhaps you need to switch it up. Rheumatologits and family doctors are not always the best resource to prescribe and manage your medication (I found out the hard way).

    I have been in and out of psychotherapy all of my life. It can be very helpful IF you have the right therapist. I have seen some that were very good and some that were simply not helpful. You should feel better after a session. And remember, you are using the opportunity to reduce your stress and anxiety - not to make it worse. Please let your therapist know that you do not feel well after sessions and perhaps she can change her approach. Remember that you are in charge here - stand up for your needs.

    I do hope you feel better soon and please keep us posted.



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