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Thread: Why I Need Therapy

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    FORT Fogey misskitty's Avatar
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    Why I Need Therapy

    OK, so I got this idea from the Koffee Klatch thread. I'm sure that some members here have had therapy from a psychiatrist, psychologist, or self-help group or better yet a great friend. Some members may feel that they could use some therapy because of events that have occurred in our lives; whether recently or long ago.

    It's possible that many of us have learned great coping mechanisms and tools which may be of help to others. Or, it may just be a good thing to air your thoughts and let that be all the therapy you need.

    Everything in this thread is private and confidential and should not be shared with others outside of the Fort. It is not and should not be thought of as a replacement for getting medical attention.
    -------------------

    I'll start. I was born a twin. A fraternal twin. Since the moment I saw the light of day, or should I say the light of the hospital lights, I have been compared to my twin. And to make it worse, to my older sister as well.

    My Mom did the best she could with what she knew. I realize that. But going through life, being dressed the same, having my name mixed up because we were all similar, and being compared to this day has definitely eroded my sense of self. For most of my life, I never felt I had a self. Society compounded the problem; teachers, doctors, friends, strangers.

    Finally, I feel like I'm getting to know who I am, what I like and don't like as an individual, and not part of a couple or team. It's been refreshing to say the least! I can't imagine what it would have been like to feel that way since I was born.
    Live simply ~ Love generously~ Care deeply~ Speak kindly

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    FORT Fogey ScoutMom's Avatar
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    I had two older sisters. The oldest was the smart one. She always got straight As and never had to study very hard to do it. She went straight from high school to college. Classic first child.

    My middle sister was the one with personality. She always had lots nad lots of friends, was in all the clubs in high school, and was very self-confident.

    Then there's me. I wasn't the smartest and I wasn't the one with the great personality. I was just me. And I always felt somewhat inferior to my sisters.

    Oldest sister got married right out of college, and her three children, and is still married after 40+ years. Recently obtained her Master's degree and works at a well-known college. Three daughters all graduated from college and may not make the most money, but have good, solid jobs.

    Middle sister moved to Oklahoma about a year after high school. Started going to college at night. Got her Bachelors and a great job. Worked her way up the ladder until she was very high up. Married a great guy and had her two boys. Unfortunately, she died from cancer three years ago.

    Then there's me. Went to work right out of high school, did a little college at night - about one year's worth. Got married young and divorced 10 years later. Then got married again and have one son. Been married for 20 years, but honestly, sometimes I feel like hubby and I are just not in sync all the time. So I'm still feeling somewhat inferior.

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    FORT Fogey PGM35's Avatar
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    Quote Originally Posted by misskitty;2697869;
    -------------------

    I'll start. I was born a twin. A fraternal twin. Since the moment I saw the light of day, or should I say the light of the hospital lights, I have been compared to my twin. And to make it worse, to my older sister as well.

    My Mom did the best she could with what she knew. I realize that. But going through life, being dressed the same, having my name mixed up because we were all similar, and being compared to this day has definitely eroded my sense of self. For most of my life, I never felt I had a self. Society compounded the problem; teachers, doctors, friends, strangers.

    Finally, I feel like I'm getting to know who I am, what I like and don't like as an individual, and not part of a couple or team. It's been refreshing to say the least! I can't imagine what it would have been like to feel that way since I was born.
    Same here! I am sure I've mentioned it before. The problem is that my sister is the one always "in my shadow". I never did anything on purpose to make her feel that way. I never compared myself to her, I was just me. It was everyone else that seemed to do that. I walked first, she didn't til almost 1 - 1/2 I think. We both took driver's ed but when we got "our" car, she never wanted to drive it. She is technically older ( by 30 sec) b/c it was a c-section, so not sure where the comparisons came from. I guess people think twins should be the "same".

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    FORT Fogey misskitty's Avatar
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    Scoutmom: You should be very proud of yourself. You are an honest, caring, loving and genuine individual. I know what it's like to be born in a family of achievers..it always seems that the pressure is there. But you have the choice to let go of that pressure that you put on yourself. Give yourself the freedom to be who you are. And that includes a person who may still be finding out about herself along the journey. I think you're great!

    PGM: Hey fellow twinster! Even though my twin was older and was always seen as the stronger one; physically, mentally and emotionally, I think it's been hard on her to keep that up. It was ok for me to crash and burn, but I think she thinks she isn't allowed to. She has done very well career-wise but has sacrified her social skills in order to do that. I, on the other hand, have given up my career, and have worked very hard to improve my social skills. Funny how things work out.
    -----------
    Just getting back to the KK thread, my Mom used to chase us around the house with a big wooden spoon. Scared the crap out of us. The confusion and difficulty came when we would get punished for anything and everything. Like not lining up my slippers in the right place. It was like living with a Bully. You never knew when you were going to "get it" and what it was even for?! I hated walking on eggshells while I was growing up.
    Last edited by misskitty; 11-29-2007 at 02:33 PM.
    Live simply ~ Love generously~ Care deeply~ Speak kindly

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    FORT Fogey ScoutMom's Avatar
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    Thanks for the kind words, misskitty. I know you're right. I should stop comparing myself to my sisters. Some things are just easier said than done.

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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    And now, a brief history of why I am the way I am. My mother was an alcoholic compulsive liar and slut, my dad a heavy drinking journalist with wanderlust. Because of that wanderlust, we lived in four different countries and ten different houses/apartments by the time I was twelve. That may not be a problem for someone whose parents loved them, but mine didn’t love me. This isn’t a self-pityingly erroneous view of things, no. When I was fourteen, my mother told me “I’m very sorry, but we never loved you. Your sister, yes, but not you”. My dad told me the exact same thing twenty years later to the month. It’s not like I was surprised – they really couldn’t have been any more obvious.

    Anyway, apart from the not-loving thing, they were both reasonably abusive in their own way. There were beatings from both of them, but the emotional stuff differed from parent to parent. To my dad, I was not good enough, I was not smart enough, and gosh darn it, people didn’t like me.

    My mom, well I’m not really sure how to describe her behaviour with me (outside of the black eye and broken rib). As a small example, one day when I was fourteen, she had me take the train into the city from our suburb, and then the unfamiliar urban transit to her office in a bad part of town. When I got there, she introduced me to Umberto, a 22 year old bakery employee. To his credit, he was horrified to find out how old I was, but apparently he had seen a picture of me and had indicated an interest in meeting me, perhaps to date if we liked each other (I looked older than fourteen). What kind of crazy bitch would set up their fourteen year old daughter with a 22 year old, no matter how nice he was?

    Anyway, I am more or less the way I am because I was “raised” entirely without a support system. Never more than a year in the same place, so no building of friendships, constantly on the road with people who didn’t love me, didn’t actually like me, and never, ever hugged me. I used to read a lot of books about serial killers because having lived the sort of life that produces sociopaths, I feared I might be one. But it eventually occurred to me that I do empathize with others and occasionally cry on their behalf, so while I may have many, many neuroses, I am not cold blooded.

    And on the subject of neuroses, I fear a lot of things. I have severe acrophobia, moderate claustrophobia and borderline agoraphobia. I’m uncomfortable with sentiment and am skeptical of affection, because historically it has meant that someone (like daddy’s friend Mr. Noble) wanted to get laid. On the plus side, the suicide attempts stopped shortly after making the final break with my mother. On the negative side, I am a plus, Plus, PLUS size.

    Later on I’ll tell you what precipitated what I anticipate to be the last of many “vacations” from my sister, unless someone tells me to keep my whining to myself.
    All I wanted was a 45, a stinking 45 - the record or the gun. I'd even settle for the damn malt liquor. - Al Bundy.

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    On a cupcake mission! Lois Lane's Avatar
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    Can I just give you all a big virtual hug?

    Rattus, have you read "Switching Time" by Richard Baer. Your parents sounds as psycho as the parents in that book. I feel almost guilty that I had stopped in here to whine about some stuff that is basically inconsequential to what I have read here. I actually had an idyllic upbringing and was probably spoiled by too much (good) attention from both of my parents, who would've sacrificed themselves to save me if need be.

    I can't speak for everyone, but I don't think that any of the posts in this thread could be construed as whining...


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    Trouble in my life just1paul's Avatar
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    I'm Listening........
    - The Dean Martin Show -

    Petula Clark: You know they say you can't buy happiness.
    Dean Martin: No but you can pour it..

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    Premium Member burntbrat's Avatar
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    Wow... You guys all trump me. I'm one of eight children born to a Mormon family and I haven't talked to my father in over 15 years. I don't even know if I'll go to his funeral when he dies, which is coming up according to my other siblings. I'm saving my stories for the memoir I'll publish. Cause they're all funny when you're not involved.

    Forget your past. You are who you are now. Just worry about what you do to others in the future.
    One of these days I'll stop being sensitive. Until then, I'll continue to be devastated on a daily basis. Life breaks my heart.

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    MRD
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    Re: Why I Need Therapy

    Rattus,

    I realize I don't "know" you, but from all the posts of yours I've read, you sound like such a well adjusted, socially responsible person, likeable person and to read what you wrote just made me want to cry. How can people treat their own child like that.

    I must say that despite your upbringing, I still think you are a well adjusted, socially responsible, likable, funny person who I would love to hang out with.
    Bravo for you for shaking off that upbringing and being the great person you are now. And as for your neuroeses, I suffer from many of those as well and know a lot of others that do. So I think that makes us all "borderline normal".

    Burntbrat is right, forget the past, live in the present, look towards the future and be the best you can be everyday. And realize that best changes from day to day. The "best" bar is not so high we can't attain it. The best I can do today may only be washing the dishes, but tomorrow it may be cleaning the whole house, doing 5 loads of laundry, cooking a great meal and being a good mom or it may be just getting dressed and combing my hair.

    Read the 4 Agreements. GREAT little book that is amazing.

    Hugs and best wishes to everyone. I've been in professional thereapy for years and take nice little happy pills to help with the severe clinical depression I was diagnosed with about 25 years ago. It hasn't always been easy and it hasn't always been hard.

    And like I told my daughter's bf tonight. Don't have regrets and what ifs. If you've done something you regreted later, learn not to do it again and move on. Regrets and what ifs are just as bad as guilt. Only you choose how you will react to something. If someone trys to make you feel guilty, its really up to you to feel that guilt or not. We all get to choose how to react and sometimes not to react is the best reaction. (I bet you can all tell I've been in actual therapy a long time huh? . I've had so much, I could probably qualify for my own license to practice)
    Que me amat, amet et canem meum
    (Who loves me will love my dog also)

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