Tag Archives: Attachment based therapy

Our therapist is gonna read to us tomorrow!

this is allie. and i’m very excited.
eileens home from vacation. i texted her last night. she told me to text 2 days before we saw her to remind her to charge up her digital recorder. cuz guess what? tomorrow we will take our new book into her office and she’s gonna read to us. i am super happy and i cant wait to be read to. it will be so special i think. the book is all about feelings. and there is a heart cut out on each page, and you can feel it. i think its called the heart book but i’m not sure if thats the name of the book and i dont know the name of the author. its gonna be so cool to have eileen read a story. and we will record it so we can listen over and over to it. i’m even thinking of asking eileen if we can make reading part of therapy and maybe once every couple of weeks if she’ll read a book to us and let us record the stories. it makes me feel so loved that she is going to do this for us. carol anne says its part of the attachment based therapy. it allows us to bond even more than we already are to her. i’m just super excited. i dont think i’ll be able to sleep tonight lol.
allie

Therapy-Holidays, blending and memories from the past

Had therapy this afternoon with Eileen. Its unusual for us to have it on Friday as usually our day is Monday. It was our last session before Eileen goes on holidays. It was a tough session but also a very productive one. We talked about her going away. I told her I felt sad and didnt want her to go. I feel like she’s abandoning me. When I’m having a hard night, all my insecurities come flooding back about her maybe possibly not seeing me any more, her thinking i’m too much and she made a mistake in starting to work with us, that we’re too broken and she’s wasting her time working with us and trying to help us. Its awful. She wondered when I told her this if I was remembering a previous time when I felt abandoned by someone, or a time when someone decided that they couldnt work with us any longer. Of course there has been plenty of those times where people, professionals said we were untreatable and that they could no longer see us. Eileen said it was totally about them, not us. She said that the fact that they couldnt continue to see us was a reflection on them and their competence and not on us in any way. I told her it doesnt feel like that though when I am thinking about it, that I feel its all our fault, that we must be doing something to cause it. She said no, we arent. That perhaps the professionals involved werent able to work with us because they lacked training, did not have good self care in place, etc. She said the fact that she’s taking this break means that she will then be able to return and be fully available to us again, fully there for us in every way. Allie came out then and talked to her a little bit about her going away and then she was very brave and asked eileen if she’d read to us when she comes back. We recently got a present of a lovely picture book all about feelings from our friend Sarah. Eileen said yes that she’d love to read a story to the kids, and not only that, but she’d charge up her digital recorder and we could record her reading it to us. So then we’d have it for when we’re scared, sad etc. The kids were ecstatic with that idea. Now eileen is even cooler than she was before. When allie was finishing up she timidly asked if she could have a hug and eileen hugged her. It really helped allie and she shyly asked eileen where she was going on holidays. She’s going to portugal. After allie had finished talking to her I started talking to her about memories I was having about dublin and about when I started school. I was five when we went to bording school. I was remembering going there with my parents and them staying for the day and then having to leave. I remember playing on a bike in the playroom and my mom pushing me on it. I remember meeting another girl Pam who went on to become my best friend. But today in therapy I was remembering the first night of being in dublin, and bedtime, when me and Pam were crying, and some older girls were comforting us instead of the staff doing it. Eileen said I was blending with a younger part who was feeling the loss of our parents, as they’d had to leave to go home, and she said we were remembering that time, the being totally dependent on others, not being in charge of our own life, etc. She reminded us that we’re an adult now, its ok to remember, we’re safe, and its now 30 years later and we survived. We did some EM~DR and worked for a while with the memories. All the time I was blended with the younger part. It was hard, intense, but I did it and tried to help her by letting her know she wasnt alone, and that I was here now. Eileen said that we’d work with this part more when she returned from her holidays. To ground me and help me to feel in control again she talked to me about my OT appointment, about Karen and my recent conversation with her about applying for extra hours, and about what I was going to do while she was away. She said the main thing is we have a plan, and we have a good support network in place to manage while she is gone. I’m glad we do and I think we’ll be ok. I’ll miss her of course but I think I can manage, and she’ll be back soon enough and i’m hoping the weeks will fly by.

Therapy talking about holidays

so our therapist eileen is going on vacation in two weeks. we’d been panicking a lot about it. so today at the start of our session i told her we needed to discuss it. and guess what? she said she’d been thinking about it too and wanting to talk to us about it also.
so we talked about when she goes, and what we could do to cope with her being gone. she said we could email her and she’d probably be checking email every few days, but not responding to any but she’d read whatever we sent to her. so that was good to know. as email is one of the ways we connect with her it is good to know that option is still there even when she’s out of the country.
we talked about her doing some recordings. and she is going to do one where she talks us through a guided imagery exercise. we are going to use disneyworld as our safe place. it will be good to have a recording of her voice talking us through that. comforting, you know?
she’s also going to do one for the kids, and another one where she reminds us to use our coping skills, and she’s going to list them out. We discussed all of them today during the session. we actually have a lot when it comes down to it! She also told us to think about things like what would eileen do, say etc when we’re anxious or overwhelmed. So we’re going to try that, too.
Dr Barry has also said that maybe when Eileens gone we can come to her twice a week instead of once a week. And since Dr Barrys kinda like a second therapist, that will be good. At least then we’ll get to spend a couple hours each week with her and be able to talk about whats going on for us.
Today too we discussed breathing and grounding techniques we could use, Eileen gave us some ideas for when the younger insiders are overwhelmed, like if taylor gets hallucinations or she starts to hallucinate blood on her to try to change the color from red to something else, or if she’s hallucinating to pretend she has a remote and can change the channel.
Eileen also told us to try to fill up the two weeks when she’s gone with things to do. So that we’re busy every day. That way she said the time will go quicker and she’ll be back before we know it. I think thats a good idea and am going to try to do some nice things for us while she’s gone, so that we sorta are having a holiday too. We’re going to go see inside out, and maybe go to the beach, to get a facial etc.
It was a good session. Its always hard to talk about holidays but I’m glad we did.

ITS ME, ALL GROWN UP?

YESTERDAY I WENT TO THERAPY. YES I DECIDED THAT RATHER THAN END IT AND DIE, I’D CHOOSE TO GO TO THERAPY AND SPEND TIME TALKING WITH EILEEN. SO I DID.
WHEN I GOT THERE I HAD TO FILL UP A FORM TO ALLOW THE ORGANISATION WHO FUNDS OUR THERAPY TO SPEAK WITH EILEEN AND OTHERS INVOLVING OUR CARE, THAT WAS EASY. THEN CAME THE HARD PART, WHERE I ACTUALLY HAD TO TALK AND TELL HER WHAT WAS GOING ON. I TOOK A DEEP BREATH AND WENT FOR IT.
I TOLD HER I’D BEEN SUICIDAL ON SUNDAY NIGHT. THAT I WANTED TO DIE. THAT I COULDNT TAKE ANY MORE OF MY THOUGHTS, OR OF LIFE IN GENERAL. THAT MY HEAD WAS SWIMMING AND I HATED HOW I FELT AND I WANTED OUT OF MY HEAD. SHE LISTENED. AND SHE ASKED ME TO EXPLAIN MY THOUGHT PROCESSES A LITTLE BIT MORE.
I TOLD HER THERE WAS TWO OPPOSING VIEWS. AN OVERWHELMED PART OF ME, AND A NUMB PART. SO THEN SHE ASKED ME
“CAN YOU STEP BACK AND BE SEPARATE FROM THE TWO PARTS? THESE ARE PARTS OF YOU, TRY TO STEP BACK AND ALLOW YOURSELF SOME SPACE AND THEN WE CAN HEAR FROM THESE PARTS”
SO I DID THAT. ALL OF A SUDDEN I SAW A ROOM. IT LOOKED LIKE A LONG SQUARE ROOM, WITH A COUCH IN IT, AND GLASS WINDOWS. I COULD SEE MYSELF STANDING ON ONE SIDE OF THE GLASS, AND THE TWO PARTS OF ME WERE INSIDE THE GLASS. I TOLD EILEEN THIS AND SHE SAID WE’D GO WITH THAT. SO WE DID.
WE DID SOME EMDR, AND SHE HAD ME TELL HER WHAT I SAW. WHAT I SAW WAS A LITTLE GIRL, ABOUT SIX YEARS OLD. SHE LOOKED LOST AND ALONE. SHE LOOKED SCARED. HER EYES WERE GLASSY AND SHE WAS CRYING. EILEEN ASKED ME IF I WANTED TO GO AND COMFORT HER AND AT FIRST I DIDNT. AT FIRST I TOTALLY RESISTEED IT. BUT EILEEN PROMISED THAT SHE’D BE WITH ME IF I WENT INSIDE THE ROOM. THAT IF THINGS WERE TOO OVERWHELMING I COULD COME BACK OUT AGAIN. SO I DECIDED TO GO IN, GO OVER TO HER, AND PUT MY ARM AROUND HER. LIKE I SAID SHE LOOKED TO BE AROUND SIX. SO I WENT IN AND I FOUND HER AND BEGAN COMFORTING HER. I FELT LIKE SHE NEEDED SOMEONE OLDER TO REASSURE HER, AND THAT PERSON WAS ME. THEN EILEEN SAID
“THIS IS YOU AT A YOUNGER AGE, YOU ARE HER ALL GROWN UP”
OH MY GOD. I WANTED TO CRY. ALL OF A SUDDEN I FELT A HUGE LOSS. LIKE LOSS AS IN I FELT HER SENSE OF ALONENESS AND HER NEED FOR LOVE, FOR CARE, FOR CONNECTION. AND I SAID TO EILEEN
“I SHOULD HAVE HAD THAT GROWING UP! AND I DIDNT. AND IT HURTS. I DESERVED TO FEEL LIKE MY NEEDS WERE BEING MET. INSTEAD THEY WERENT AND I WAS BEING HURT.”
EILEEN REACHED OVER AND TOUCHED MY ARM.
“ITS OK LIZ, SHE SAID SOFTLY. ITS OK TO FEEL THIS WAY. YOUR DOING GREAT. YOUHAVE A RIGHT TO FEEL THIS WAY.”
I REALLY WANTED TO CRY BUT I DIDNT DO THAT. I FELT MYSELF BECOMING ANGRY BOTH BECAUSE I WANTED TO CRY AND DIDNT WANT TO ALLOW MYSELF TO DO IT, AND BECAUSE MY NEEDS HADNT BEEN MET GROWING UP. I TALKED TO EILEEN ABOUT MY FAMILY FOR A WHILE. ABOUT HOW MY LITTLE SISTER WAS ALWAYS SHIELDED FROM EVERYTHING AND HOW I WASNT. HOW WE HAD TO CARRY THE WEIGHT OF EVERYTHING GROWING UP, ABOUT OUR DADS DRINKING, WHEN THERE WOULD BE ARGUMENTS AT HOME, WHEN THE ABUSE CAME OUT AND IT WAS KEPT ALL HUSH HUSH, EILEEN AGREED.
“YES SHE SAID. THAT IS A VERY VALID POINT. SHE WAS SHIELDED FROM SO MUCH, AND YOU WERENT.”
WE DID SOME MORE EMDR THEN AND WORKED WITH ALL THE FEELINGS THAT ALL THIS INFO BROUGHT UP. IT WAS A HARD SESSION. BUT I HAVE TO SAY I FELT ALL THE BETTER AFTER IT. EILEEN SAID I DID GREAT AND WE GOT A LOT OF HARD AND IMPORTANT WORK DONE. I TALKED TO HER ABOUT HOW WE’D DISCONNECTED LAST WEEK. SHE SAID ITS THE NATURE OF RELATIONSHIPS AND SOMETIMES IT HAPPENS BECAUSE SOMETHINGS RUNNING IN THE BACKGROUND, BUT THAT THEN WE FLAG IT AND IT GOES AWAY AGAIN AND THE CONNECTION COMES BACK. I SAID I HATED IT WHEN WE WERE DISCONNECTED, AND SHE SAID SHE KNEW THAT, AND HAD GOTTEN EMAILS DURING THE WEEK FROM YOUNGER PARTS ABOUT IT TOO.
I’M REALLY REALLY GLAD I DIDNT KILL MYSELF AND DECIDED TO GO TO THERAPY INSTEAD.
KLIZ

Therapy was an emotional roller coaster yesterday

Yesterday we had a tough therapy session. We were feeling very emotional during most of it. It happened that Eileens mom became ill yesterday morning, so at the last minute Eileen had to cancel so she could take her mom to the doctor. She said she’d call us back later in the day to reschedule, and true to her word she did and we saw her at 4 PM.
She was asking me what was with me and how I was doing but I couldnt quite get my words together to talk. I just kept dissociating and spacing out.
Eventually Liz said she wanted some time to talk. So Liz came out then and I stepped back, but I was able to listen to what was being said from inside. Liz is really depressed. She told Eileen she doesnt care about anything. That she feels like there is a huge weight dragging her down. Eileen could feel it too, and she said she felt really lethargic and sleepy all of a sudden, and that she felt like there was a sorta disconnect between us.
She sat directly infront of us so she could look at us and her and Liz kept on talking. Liz said she felt like she was going to burst into tears, and Eileen sais it was ok to do that, but Liz wouldnt. Eileen kept asking her what she thought would happen if she allowed herself to get emotional. But Liz was very unresponsive.
She told Eileen about the dream we’d had. And how we’d argued in the dream, and eileen asked if in the dream Liz was angry at her, but Liz said no, you were angry at us. Eileen thought that was very strange. She asked Liz if she thought she’d get angry at us if we got emotional, but Liz said no.
We were going to work with the pulsers but Eileen had left them somewhere when she’d last used them outside of her office, so instead she had us cross our arms over our chest, in a hugging manner, and do a tapping exercise to bring up the feelings of sadness that Liz was feeling.
We never did cry. We came really close a couple of times. But we were just unable to allow it to happen.
Eileen walked us around the room to help us to come back into our body. She said she noticed that we were really really dissociative and she kept asking which part felt that way, why they were feeling like that, what they were trying to block etc. It was a very tough session.
I felt like we did not get a lot accomplished in yesterdays session. It wasnt like our usual sessions where we talk freely. Its not because we dont trust her, we most definitely do. It was just that we were feeling very intense emotions and were just scared of what that meant for us.