Therapy Archive

Therapy Update

Posted February 28, 2019 By kmarrs

We’re still in the early getting to know each other phase. But my first impression is holding true. Her office is really cozy and just feels like a safe space. Ruby herself is friend shaped and I feel really comfortable talking to her about anything.

Which is really great because a few sessions ago I opened up about the trauma in my life. The fact my step father was a bully. The bullying at school. My mom being a narcissist. The fact my first boyfriend was 8 years older then me, coerce me into sleeping with him regularly, and in all ways took advantage of my youth and inexperience and desire to please this older man whom was the first person to pay attention to me. We pulled words to what he was: a pedophile and a rapist.

Anyway we talked it all out and she is starting to piece together why I am the way I am.

BPD makes sense. Eve from a young age.

Being asexual makes sense. (Some asexuals are born that way. Some become asexual after trauma.)

The current project that I’m working on is tracking my emotions and recording what they do to me physically. Like how anger makes you tense up? Where do I tense?

I bought a little notebook and am planning to track for weeks beyond what she is asking of me. If I want to get rid of my anger response, for example, then I need to know what anger does to me so I can counter act it.

Also, I’m realizing, with help, that the 90% of my life that I feel stressed, the emotion attached to that is fear. Fear of failure. Fear I won’t get everything done. Fear I won’t have down time to just relax. My stress is a fear response and my stress is killing me.

So yeah. Therapy is going great and I really like Ruby. She is the best! I feel like that’s an understatement. But she is just really comforting and a really super effective therapist. She calls me on my bullshit. All with understanding and heart behind her words. And all while wearing fun socks, and no shoes.

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New Therapist

Posted January 17, 2019 By kmarrs

We’ll start with the old. I saw my old therapist, Cindy, off and on for some 12 years. I was pregnant with my middle little when we paired up and I started DBT. It was right before I got pregnant that I was diagnosed with BPD. And he’s turning 11 in just a few days so almost 12 years seems pretty on the nose.

And Cindy was/is great. She specializes in BPD and DBT and I adore her. I would not have the skills I have now, if not for her.

But I’m at a point in my life where one of the primary things I want to talk about in therapy is my identity of being queer. (Which is how I choose to sum up my sexuality and gender identity.) And Cindy is not afraid to talk about me being queer, but she has no experience with it personally or with people in her life so she had no practical advice to offer. She had great listening skills, but I need a little more.

So I did a literal google search for trans therapists that are local to me and I found Ruby. I don’t know if she herself is trans. I honestly can’t tell even after a session with her (which is fine) but I do know she has a Master’s in Gender Studies and gender queer people in her life, beyond her own experience. (She did say she is queer. It just hasn’t been defined out. Which again is fine. I don’t need her life story beyond the generalization that she’s qualified in this topic and issue.)

Additionally, she’s also fully versed in BPD a lot like Cindy is. So I’m not completely sacrificing whatever help I need with BPD, just to have someone whom can relate to gender issues.

Anyway, as of now I’m going to start seeing Ruby every Monday after work. My first session was this past Monday, the 14th of January. And I want to talk about it. Not the details of what we talked about, though I will sum it up, but instead the general feel of it all. Why Ruby is the perfect fit for me.

She was just coming in from being outside when it was time to start our session. So we go into her rented office and she starts going around the spacious room and turning on a dozen floor and table lamps. No harsh overhead florescents. Nope. This isn’t a sterile office, this place has a living room feel. There are comfy places to sit with an abundance of pillows and blankets. Rugs on the floor. A play area for children. Huge, wall conquering book cases filled with books. This place just immediately felt like home. Which, as nervous as I was, it put me at ease.

After she turned on all the lights, she sat in her own comfy chair, bent down, and took off her boots revealing fun cat socks. Like. There are just no words. I picked her off this long list of therapists that I found because she was friend shaped. I was delighted to discover that she specialized in what I needed her to specialize in. But the initially what made me go to her website, off the list, was that she just looked warm and friendly. Warm. So warm. So to have her kick off her shoes, which is honestly my person aesthetic, was revoltionary. I didn’t know therapists could do that! From now on, any new therapists I try out, if they don’t kick off their shoes, then they just aren’t for me.

The office. The no shoes. I just felt really safe.

Moving on, though I could spend another 5 paragraphs talking about the no shoes and fun socks…

I’m pretty secure in my gender identity now so while I wanted someone who specializes in it, it won’t be the main focus of therapy. We talked about that some. Most the session was just a brief outline of who I am. Standard first session shit. But we did discuss the goals.

My main objective is to deal with my anger issues I’m finally admitting I have. I… when I’m frustrated by my kids or spouse I turn red with anger and before I even realize I’m doing it, I start yelling. All the fucking time. I don’t want to yell anymore. I need to replace it with something, I don’t know what because the kids don’t listen. But I don’t want to yell anymore. It’s just not how I want my home life to go. So over the next however many weeks and months, Ruby is going to help me learn skills to stop the yelling, and parenting skills as to what I can do in place of it to get the kids to listen.

Cindy probably could have done that for me. But now, with Ruby, when gender issues are on the forefront of my mind, I can bring them up and we can tackle them as a team. It’s not the primary objective of therapy, but it’s still a thing that can coexist.

So every Monday at 4 I’m in therapy with Ruby, who works out of what could easily be a living room, if not for the insurance agent across the hall, and who kicks off her shoes to reveal relatable socks. I’m… it’s a good way to spend my Monday afternoons.

I should have kicked off my own shoes. Next time.

And then after therapy I have a standing dinner date with my dad. Which will make for a long day, but it lets me avoid rush hour traffic in getting home (therapy is on his side of town, my house is decidedly not) and I really should spend more time with him anyways. So this is good. I get home 10 hours after I left it and exhausted, but that’s just how it is sometimes.

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New Year, Same Me

Posted January 19, 2017 By kmarrs

This is just a general update.

It took me two months to get over that cough.  And even so my lungs still aren’t quite right.  I’ve never had bronchitis hit me that hard.  But then again, pneumonia.  Right as I was starting to get better, right about Christmas, I caught a cold my daughter brought home from school, and it went right to my lungs.  I just couldn’t catch a break.  Then again with this weather yo-yoing between freezing and light jacket weather, it’s no wonder everyone is sick.  And everyone is sick.  I don’t just mean my family, I mean there are nasty bugs out there going around.

I’ve made some friends.  On Tumblr but it totally counts.  I’ve joined a group of misfits that have banned together to form a family.  Misfits is my word, but I think they’d agree with it.  I’m still in the early stages of joining.  I’ve been welcomed by the group patriarch, Simon.  And one of the group members, Savi, is my new best friend.  Or she will be just give it time.  I’m slowly making friends with the others.  It’s hard because I’m introverted, but I’ve been welcomed and that’s a great feeling.  They meet on social media and watch movies and chat every night, basically all night, because we’re a bunch of insomniacs.  I only meet with them Thursday night through Saturday night because I need my sleep during the week.  One part depression, one part med cocktail, one part fibromyalgia, one part I’ve been this way my entire life: I value sleep and need a solid 9-10 hours of it with frequent 12 hour power naps to help fill in the gaps.  You think I’m joking?  I’m not.  So I’ve made friends.  My therapist would be so proud.

Only, she’s not my therapist anymore.  It’s a long story but the gist of it is, I’m not feeling the magic anymore so I’m breaking off the relationship.  Maybe I’ll go back next time life crumbles.  Maybe I’ll find a new one.  I still have my meds doc, so I’m not without mental health help.  I’m just not in therapy.  And right now, at this moment that’s ok.  That relationship wasn’t a good fit anymore so it was time to move on.  If I was really responsible I’d get myself set up with a new one and a relationship established before my next life crash.  I know my meds doc can recommend one.  I’m just tired.  And right now, that’s one less half hour trip there, hour-long appointment, half hour trip back.  I could find someone closer, but I like the group I go to.  They are worth the travel time.  And I’m not giving up my meds doctor.  So I might as well find a therapist in the same building.

Trump.  Actually, I’d rather not.  I have not opened that can of worms on this blog and I’m going to keep it that way for now.  Let us just leave it at this: I’m really going to miss Obama.  He brought a level of dignity, class, and professionalism to the office that will be sorely missed.

School is going well.  I’m maintaining a nearly 4.0.  I still have that one B that is keeping me from perfection, but I’ll survive.  I have not repeated the incident, at least.  I’m currently in a professional communications class which is heavy on the writing.  I’m, maybe not enjoying the content, but I really enjoy my professor and this class will be a huge help in my academic and professional careers, so I can respect it for that.

Speaking of which, class starts in 15, so I’d better proof read this and get it posted.  I’ll try my best to be better at writing regularly.  I’m not saying weekly, but we’ll see.  I’m just so tired.  Work, school, kids.  I’m exhausted.

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Living Life with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD)

Posted September 30, 2010 By kmarrs

Today has been stressful. Very stressful. And I’m keeping it off my blog. Which is hard for me. However it’s the best thing to do for all parties involved. And that’s all I’m going to say about that.

The relaxing part of my day, besides laying in bed day dreaming this morning, was therapy. Times two. Both Thomas and I had therapy today. And since I’m a part of Thomas’s therapy, I in effect had 2 hours of therapy today. That’s a lot of therapy.

One of the central focuses of my therapy, aside from stress, worries and money, was Tiny Cat. She came up in Thomas’s therapy too. The central theme being we are all happier with her around.

They say pets can improve mental health. I believed it but I never really saw it first hand.

It is my opinion that Tiny Cat is the ray of sunshine this family needed. She has become someone for Pat to cuddle. Someone for the boys to play with. And she has become both for me. When I can catch her I give her a good nuzzle before I release her. And when I feel like crawling around on the floor like an idiot, she is usually willing to play a game or two. I’ve also discovered when I have her distracted during a game, I can usually pet her a couple of times before she catches on to what I’m doing and backs away.

Ok, so she hasn’t totally decide she is willing to love me. I can deal with that. She isn’t my cat. She is Pat’s cat. She literally scales Pat to get and give love from him. And that’s great. She is at least willing to play with me and that’s awesome for me.

Petting animals lowers your heart rate. It soothes you, calms you. Playing keep away is a potent anti-depressant. Don’t believe me? Find the closest kitten and any sort of string. Or a pencil works too. Anything, really.

Active interaction with animals does and will improve your mental health. So give it a try!

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