Hey everyone, I’ve been lacking in my blog posts. I usually make a post at the end of each semester, but this past semester has been intense and I don’t know if I need to retake one class (I need at least a B in my core classes). I was going to post a therapy update at the one-month mark, but haven’t had the motivation to do it. I’ve been keeping up with my wedding countdown posts, though. The new semester is about to start for me so I might just be posting about wedding planning stuff. But anyways, here’s the long awaited therapy update.
I started looking for therapy again after a meltdown on my birthday caused so much distress that I almost ended up in the hospital. It was the worst birthday ever and is going to be the last time I celebrate my birthday since my birthday is now littered with the memory of my mental illness. I had another meltdown a week later. It was becoming an emergency that I NEEDED mental health help one more time before I committed myself to inpatient treatment at a well-known mental health institution in my state for comprehensive treatment and proper diagnosis.
I found a therapist I wanted awhile ago (back in August/September), but my company changed insurances and she was out of network. As well as looking for someone in my insurance who taught coping skills and had evening appointments, I also wanted to look for someone who may treat Borderline Personality Disorder (which I feel I have) and/or Asperger’s Syndrome (another thing I feel I have). Only one person responded back to me, and she owned a business with other therapists working under her. While I don’t have the owner as my therapist, I have someone who’s working well.
I’ve been in therapy for two months now. My original goal was to learn coping strategies for distress. Turns out I have even bigger issues to work on.
- I have emotional regulation issues
- I have difficulty processing my emotions other than anger
- Something is severe (she mentioned it when my parents were in therapy with me, but I can’t recall what is severe)
Based on other questions she asked my parents, I am convinced I have Borderline Personality Disorder even though my therapist hasn’t said it. I feel like she’s scared to make the diagnosis because a lot of therapists are afraid of BPD patients. I shouldn’t have to go to Philadelphia, PA for effective treatment like a BPD patient at my church has to. We don’t even live in Pennsylvania, dang it! Many therapists also feel like BPD is untreatable, which would explain why therapy never worked for me the first three times.
Right now, we’re focusing on me learning to regulate my emotions with the “Name It, Tame It, Reframe It” skill. I find it embarrassing that this is a method that is taught to children because I’m an adult and emotional regulation is supposed to be mastered by the teenage years. I am also learning how to process my emotions, which will make the “Name It” part of “Name It, Tame It, Reframe It” easier to implement. I hope we can later focus on coping skills and the possible Asperger’s symptoms later.
Surprisingly, my brain is actually taking in the skills I’ve learned so far and my brain sometimes tells me to use the skills, but I wonder if my brain is only doing this short-term. I don’t want to be in therapy for the rest of my life.
I could say the scariest thing about this attempt at therapy is that when my therapist asked me if I’ve seen a psychiatrist before and I said no, she asked why. I thought she was going to refer me to one, and seeing a psychiatrist will restrict me on some things in my life. Luckily, when she said “I definitely want” after that therapy session, it ended with “to talk to your parents to get more of a history.” I feel like if I get put on a medication for my mystery mental health issues, I will never be able to get off them. For me, being put on medication is the same as succumbing to my mental illness.
Maybe I’ll learn why my brain is so severely messed up compared to my immediate and extended family members and can get proper overdue treatment. Hopefully it’s not too late to be treatable.