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Does counselling/therapy really help?

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Cornflowerblue

Active member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
38
Location
UK
Hi all, I would be grateful for some insight into your personal experiences with regard to the efficacy of counselling/ therapy please.

Did you have Counselling and did it help you with your issues? What was involved in the sessions? I’m about to start receiving counselling/therapy and I don’t know what to expect. I need to manage my expectations about feeling better. I need to understand the possibilities and limitations of this type of treatment.

I had quite a difficult childhood/adolescence and I’m only now realising that what I went through may be causing the mental health issues like anxiety im experiencing today.

I’d really appreciate your input , thankyou.
 
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sab1978

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 10, 2020
Messages
182
Location
Canada
I’ve found it really helpful. Telling your story to a therapist is very powerful. As much as I felt that I’d made sense of things on my own, the dysfunctional behaviours in my life told me otherwise. I’d just about guarantee that your childhood is related to your current issues.
 
C

Cornflowerblue

Active member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
38
Location
UK
I also feel I’ve made sense of things on my own but in my case I’ve reached conclusions that make me feel more anxious and helpless. I hope therapy will help me overcome my demons, I’m hoping so...
 
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sab1978

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 10, 2020
Messages
182
Location
Canada
I think we can confuse moving on with our lives with being healed. They are sooooo different. I’ve moved on...on paper, my life is perfect. But I am far from healed. My inner turmoil is evidence of that. It helps me immensely to talk with my therapist about my past. It also helps to come on here and realize how many people are struggling the same way you are ❤
 
C

Cornflowerblue

Active member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
38
Location
UK
You are so right . I too have reached my goals so to speak, perfect on paper , all boxes ticked but the inner turmoil remains. I didn’t realise I needed to heal. The suggestion feels self indulgent, the urge was to carry on and not dig up the past.
 
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Coolname

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 3, 2019
Messages
663
Location
UK
Hi all, I would be grateful for some insight into your personal experiences with regard to the efficacy of counselling/ therapy please.

Did you have Counselling and did it help you with your issues? What was involved in the sessions? I’m about to start receiving counselling/therapy and I don’t know what to expect. I need to manage my expectations about feeling better. I need to understand the possibilities and limitations of this type of treatment.

I had quite a difficult childhood/adolescence and I’m only now realising that what I went through may be causing the mental health issues like anxiety im experiencing today.

I’d really appreciate your input , thankyou.
Hi

I have had 3 different types of counselling / therapy and I have benefited from all in different ways. Some allow you to get things off your chest, some help you to identify and address specific issues, some are about more in depth emotional work.

The rules that apply to all types are;
  1. You will only get out what you put in.
  2. Be honest with your counsellor / therapist, you will have nothing to say that they have not heard before.
  3. If you are not comfortable with the therapist / counsellor then say so at the earliest opportunity and seek to change them if necessary. It is your time and it should feel right for you.

Some common types of counselling / therapy are;

You posted in the PTSD thread. PTSD often stems from a single incident or a set of distinct incidents. EMDR is relatively new and is gaining a good reputation for PTSD.

Person Centered counselling is good for getting everything off your chest while being supported and advised. Liking and trusting your counsellor are really important.

CBT is about identifying distorted thoughts and feelings today and learning how to challenge the beliefs that create the distortions.

In the UK, the NHS often also offer CAT. This is a talking therapy aimed at taking the best of practical cognitive work and mixing it with the best of traditional psychoanalysis. It is often heavily tailored to the individual. I found it excellent in helping me identify and process my repressed emotions in a constructive manner.

There are many other types of therapy or counselling out there. Getting assessed by the NHS is often a good way to identify what is best for you.
 
S

sab1978

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 10, 2020
Messages
182
Location
Canada
You are so right . I too have reached my goals so to speak, perfect on paper , all boxes ticked but the inner turmoil remains. I didn’t realise I needed to heal. The suggestion feels self indulgent, the urge was to carry on and not dig up the past.
Oh, the urge the carry on...it works for a while and then your subconscious screams at you to deal with it all. I don’t think there’s any way around dealing with it if you want to live a peaceful life.
 
C

Cornflowerblue

Active member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
38
Location
UK
Hi

I have had 3 different types of counselling / therapy and I have benefited from all in different ways. Some allow you to get things off your chest, some help you to identify and address specific issues, some are about more in depth emotional work.

The rules that apply to all types are;
  1. You will only get out what you put in.
  2. Be honest with your counsellor / therapist, you will have nothing to say that they have not heard before.
  3. If you are not comfortable with the therapist / counsellor then say so at the earliest opportunity and seek to change them if necessary. It is your time and it should feel right for you.

Some common types of counselling / therapy are;

You posted in the PTSD thread. PTSD often stems from a single incident or a set of distinct incidents. EMDR is relatively new and is gaining a good reputation for PTSD.

Person Centered counselling is good for getting everything off your chest while being supported and advised. Liking and trusting your counsellor are really important.

CBT is about identifying distorted thoughts and feelings today and learning how to challenge the beliefs that create the distortions.

In the UK, the NHS often also offer CAT. This is a talking therapy aimed at taking the best of practical cognitive work and mixing it with the best of traditional psychoanalysis. It is often heavily tailored to the individual. I found it excellent in helping me identify and process my repressed emotions in a constructive manner.

There are many other types of therapy or counselling out there. Getting assessed by the NHS is often a good way to identify what is best for you.
Can I ask if it’s normal if your therapist/counsellor lady does not want you to talk about specifics of your early life or how family is with you now after 5be first session. She only wants to talk about mindfulness exercises and such like. She implies that when we talk about the awfulness of how things were we can’t move forward. Is that common? We have had 3 sessions. After the first she was sort of reluctant to talk about my actual family events but just wants to know how I feel today and work on mindfulness and breathing etc. which leaves me unsure of whether I should say something or not. Maybe therapists are supposed to work on healing only? I have no idea, I just feel all that validated even though she has specifically said how bad things were for me back then. She just wants to talk about strength and not discuss the past or how my family torments me now .
 
R

ramboghettouk

Well-known member
Founding Member
Joined
Jan 7, 2008
Messages
16,808
Location
london
you'd be better off going to a meditation or yoga place
 
C

Coolname

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 3, 2019
Messages
663
Location
UK
Can I ask if it’s normal if your therapist/counsellor lady does not want you to talk about specifics of your early life or how family is with you now after 5be first session. She only wants to talk about mindfulness exercises and such like. She implies that when we talk about the awfulness of how things were we can’t move forward. Is that common? We have had 3 sessions. After the first she was sort of reluctant to talk about my actual family events but just wants to know how I feel today and work on mindfulness and breathing etc. which leaves me unsure of whether I should say something or not. Maybe therapists are supposed to work on healing only? I have no idea, I just feel all that validated even though she has specifically said how bad things were for me back then. She just wants to talk about strength and not discuss the past or how my family torments me now .
Hi
I think point 3 of my post applies :) These are your sessions. Ask her why she is approaching things this way and see if you are satisfied with the answer. There might be a good reason, but if you are not convinced, then say so. I do worry that some counsellors / therapists buy into a certain school of treatment so completely that they forget they are supposed to be helping the person in front of them, and not the notional patient from a textbook.
 
C

Cornflowerblue

Active member
Joined
Aug 4, 2020
Messages
38
Location
UK
Hi
I think point 3 of my post applies :) These are your sessions. Ask her why she is approaching things this way and see if you are satisfied with the answer. There might be a good reason, but if you are not convinced, then say so. I do worry that some counsellors / therapists buy into a certain school of treatment so completely that they forget they are supposed to be helping the person in front of them, and not the notional patient from a textbook.
Absolutely nailed it, couldn’t have said it better myself.
 
M

Mary26

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 28, 2018
Messages
266
Location
USA
I was seeing a counselor once who would spend our sessions doing meditation and mindfulness exercises. I kept getting worse. One day I told him I wanted to end my life. He said let's meditate. I left him and found a psychologist who, in the first session, asked the right questions and laid out exactly what my issues were. We spent the majority of our time talking about my childhood and feeling the pain. I felt validated. I was encouraged to feel my anger (it was there whether I wanted to acknowledge it or not). I healed and haven't felt depressed in a very long time. Yes, with the right therapist, you can heal.
 
K

khuang

Well-known member
Joined
Jun 26, 2014
Messages
933
Location
Avenue Q in the US
I find that seeing a therapist has helped me in many ways. I’ve been through so much that I find it nice to have someone to talk to about my problems and to vent about stuff. High school was very traumatic for me and I need a way to vent about everything and therapy helps me there.
 
R

Ray53

Member
Joined
Nov 22, 2020
Messages
24
Location
Oxford
Hi all, I would be grateful for some insight into your personal experiences with regard to the efficacy of counselling/ therapy please.

Did you have Counselling and did it help you with your issues? What was involved in the sessions? I’m about to start receiving counselling/therapy and I don’t know what to expect. I need to manage my expectations about feeling better. I need to understand the possibilities and limitations of this type of treatment.

I had quite a difficult childhood/adolescence and I’m only now realising that what I went through may be causing the mental health issues like anxiety im experiencing today.

I’d really appreciate your input , thankyou.
Hi.
I had 5 years 1to1 therapy for PTSD and a bag full of other issues. What helped me was TA. TRANSACTIONAL ANALYSIS. The study of the 3 ego states. Adult, child and parent. It worked so well I went on to study it so I could really get into it. Check it out. Look for Eric burn on TA.
Prior to that I spent years visiting many therapists and councillors with no luck.
Finding a person you can open up with and share your thoughts is important. I couldn't find anyone. Didn't like them, didn't like their look, their office. Didn't like anything about them. One day I met Linda. I was sent to prison for 5 years. If I hadn't gone their I would not have met her. I know call her my fairy god mother. We got on well. I trusted her. She helped me find my way back to a better life with a calmer and more confident attitude.
I've found therapy can be negative if the place and person isn't right for me.
As we are all different it's impossible for me to say what's right for another.
TA has transformed my life and aided me in unravelling my spaghetti brain.
I'm still unwell but now I understand why I react to things and why others do too. It's put the world into perspective.
My Father damaged me but he didn't know he was at the time. TA has cleared my negative memories of him and how I felt. I was able to forgive him (massively important to move on)
and now I focus on our happy times and not on the darkness.
I was looking for a top up recently but I can't find anyone I'm happy to open up too.. I opened my studies. Read the lot again and surfaced to breath fresh air.
 
H

Hana26

Active member
Joined
Nov 26, 2020
Messages
35
Location
World
I can tell you from personal experience that therapy has helped / is still helping but it took both being mentally ready for therapy AND finding the right therapist for things to finally work out for me.

I saw more than one therapists growing up but I didn't talk about certain events in my life because I was either ashamed / wanted to protect those who harmed me by not "dragging them in the dirt" - that's how I felt -

It actually took me years to start realizing that these events / people involved, were what generated my traumas and that I should talk about it, from then on, I felt ready to accept therapy. It also took time for me to find the RIGHT person to talk to, some therapists made me feel uneasy or I didn't like their methods.

I found a good therapist and been making progress, it's definitely working well and I'm considering meditation on the side too x
 
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