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Stuck in place

716dayslost posted 3/14/2021 16:15 PM

I have been happily divorced for 7 years. I was ion a relationship with my ex-wife for over 30 years, with the last ten filled with her as a WW.

Post D, I was in counseling that helped me tremendously. That was ended over a year ago. I did not feel I was prepared or ready to not see a counselor, but it was not my choice. At the time, I just had some really negative dating experiences. A few months later the covid hit. Since that time I have really been searching for answers for what to do. Covid has been an excuse, but not the real reason I have been stuck for over a year. I do not know if I can open up to a counselor again; I cannot seem to connect with someone to date; I do not have my life together to be ready to date (I realize this is a shield because I have fear).

What brought this to head is the past few weeks I have had to help several friends/family though serious personal and medical struggles. (it has been a lot, including three with cancer). I am looked up to as someone that has all the answers and solutions (I do, for everyone but myself, lol). I am not in any dark or negative place, just want to have some direction in my life.
It feels like I have had blood taken from me and I have no avenue to get a transfusion for myself. Feeling drained and ironically alone though.

I do feel that I perhaps need professional help, but I am not sure if I can trust in counseling yet. I am sharing this here, because I do not have any other outlet.
I am interested in suggestions, encouragement, especially those who have experience in therapy. Thanks

AnnieOakley posted 3/14/2021 17:31 PM

716,

I read your thread from last year and Iím sorry to see that you are still dealing with the fall out from your therapist.

I agree the CV19 has definitely placed my dating life on hold. Iíve mentioned in several responses that 2020 was going to be MY YEAR! Ha. Hard. Stop.

Iíll give you an example and then bring it back to you. My older sister died very unexpectedly from a stoke 8 years ago. Her spouse (HS sweetheart) was of course devastated. After a few weeks he started grief group counseling. Which was a surprise to all of us. Kind man, but rather quiet. My sister was always in charge of their social calendar. After about a year he decided to become a grief counselor himself. Which was a HUGE surprise to us. He did it for about 3 years. Until he met a widow, in one of the groups. They have been together since.

Helping others helped him with his grief. He didnít avoid it, in fact he talked about my sister for years as a counselor and our family still talks about her often.

People look up to you as someone that has good sound answers and solutions...can you put that to use in a volunteer situation like a hospice or something of the like where you do not have a personal connection? Not saying that hospice volunteering is easy, I understand that. Youth or elderly groups that need volunteers? Helping others gives most of us those feel good endorphins.

And you never know who you may meet in the course of volunteering, someone with other likeminded interests such as yourself? A friend or family member, etc.

716dayslost posted 3/14/2021 17:47 PM

Annie, thanks.

I agree that I have received positive things from my helping others. Plus, things I have done have done good for others. It is not something I seek out, but rather I feel that God uses me in this way. I am not anything special, rather I just answer the calls and react to situations.

The good I feel in helping, is great but it does not address things I struggle with. Being without counseling has been challenging, but it feels incomplete and unresolved. I do not have the answers or complete understanding of why my counselor stopped therapy. The explanation was "downsizing" of patients, yet my counselor still accepts new patients now. Also I did not receive any hand off or guidance as to what is next. No referral. There was nothing wrong that I was aware of and I even was given a few months advance notice.

So the reality of my situation is that I was in counseling dealing with rejection and betrayal, and then in fact ended it feeling rejected and betrayed. Main reason why I have fears to try it again. When people in my like need me, I do not abandon them. Yet I feel abandoned by others. It seems like this is a sticking point for me now.

MelisssaZZZ posted 3/21/2021 04:59 AM

I think a lot depends how you look at things and maybe try to see the therapist so called rejection from a different angle.

If he or she so to say discharged you that means that they thought you are well enough to deal with everything on your own and they felt they could not help you anymore. I think this can actually be seen as a positive step not a negative one.

716dayslost posted 3/21/2021 09:26 AM

Thanks Melissa, I agree with you if that was the case. However, that was never stated nor implied in any way.
I am an optimist in life and look positively at things.
If this were a physical doctor who was downsizing in the middle of treatment, they would have referred me to another doctor and shepherded the transition. Plus I would have analysis of my status. My therapist never gave me any insight to that or a reason why other than downsizing.
I think I have two things unresolved. One is to have closure on my previous therapy. Two, while I lead a good life now, can counseling help me live a better life? I should talk to an experienced counselor/therapist to get their opinion, but it is difficult for me to attempt again.

MelisssaZZZ posted 3/21/2021 10:15 AM

Hmmm. From your other post it seems you were seeing therapist for a while. Closure is overrated 😂. You can always call and ask the therapist if that is so important... but most likely they did not see how they can help you anymore and so to say you graduated :).

Maybe try something more lighthearted. A dating coach/ life coach? Someone to advise on specific problem you want to solve -like ideas on organising your life so you have a space for someone else. Or advising on dating - letís face it you were married for a long time so I am assuming not too much recent practice :). And they will so to say translate the negative experiences so you understand them and can learn from them. Dating is a discovery..

And itís always easy to see solutions for others problems.. but not our own - thatís not unusual. Donít feel though like you cannot ask for others views...

Sounds like you need a friend to connect to...

Anna123 posted 3/21/2021 10:21 AM

Maybe she felt like she had nothing more to offer and didn't want to admit it? I don't know why she wouldn't give you a better explanation, that just seems wrong. But just like we learned as BS's, we can guess till the cows come home and we will still just be wasting time and valuable mental real estate guessing.

Did you feel that your counseling sessions were more about you being able to share what your thoughts and feelings were, or was it about her input and guidance helping you navigate your life?

716dayslost posted 3/21/2021 11:41 AM

Thanks Anna, I would say that my counselor was an experienced professional. She has been in the field for over 30 years and is also a professor at the local University. Also she never hesitated to be brutally honest with me, until this. imho, this was out of character, and not so professional and I am left wondering what happened and why.
You are right, I will never get any answers from the source, like my WW. SI was great for working through those unanswered questions then.
I went to a couple counseling sites and one wanted to match me to a counselor right away and pre pay a month of therapy. I am not ready for that yet. I need to just have a conversation with a professional that sets the groundwork for what I should do next.

[This message edited by 716dayslost at 11:43 AM, March 21st (Sunday)]

BearlyBreathing posted 3/21/2021 15:15 PM

716,

I think your therapist handled that VERY poorly. I am so sorry.
And she absolutely contributed to your feeling of abandonment.
I have had three therapists since D-Dayó each very different from the other and each providing me a different value at a different place on my journey. Please consider trying again but maybe with a slightly different goal.

I am sorry you feel stuck. Covid has not been easyó like Annie O, 2020 was going to be my year.

Keep seeking answersó that you recognize you are stuck is actually really good.

Rooting for you!

716dayslost posted 3/21/2021 19:45 PM

BearlyBreathing, thanks.

What is so odd about it is that nothing like this happened before and there was no incident to point to that changed things. I felt I was still getting benefits from counseling, and the last session I told her that I still needed help and she did not respond.
Thank you for your encouragement. I probably should be seeing a counselor, as I always looked at this as not healing a wound, but like going to the gym for your physical health but emotions and mental health. Yet I am stung and find it so hard to get past what happened. It feels too heavy. That is why I would like to start with just having a conversation with a professional to get an assessment.
It is holding back me completing my life that is generally very good.
As you said, a journey. :)

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