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But just because I stop therapy doesn't mean my mind stops working. I was good for a while at first, but then I started recovering memories more frequently, and more and more traumatic ones. It interfered with work, school, relationships, and everything else. I didn't have to coping skills to handle them. I didn't have the skills to process and understand the emotions that were coming up. My partners have tried to help, but they aren't therapists and it was unfair of me to ask them to help take care of me when I wasn't giving myself the care I needed.
And that was the crux of the problem. I wasn't getting myself the care I needed because I didn't feel like I deserved it. I didn't feel like I deserved compassion or understanding. I would listen to my partners' advice and their expressions of concern and love and understanding, but it wasn't helpful because I kept telling myself I didn't deserve it. I should just function normally, highly even, no matter what was going on. I expected to be able to handle things the way I did when I was abusing pills, and I obviously couldn't. I looked at my problems the way I looked at a machine that was broken. I wasn't fixing them for the sake of the machine, I was making the machine run again. That's not the way a survivor of abuse deserves to be treated. I deserve to have my problems taken seriously, and dealt with compassionately. And that's what I need to give myself.
I was thinking about all of this in bed this morning and I curled up and started crying. Quietly. We keep rats as pets and we recently lost one to an illness. Rats tend to get sick and die quite suddenly, and I caught it too late to save her. It was very sad, but right afterward the other rats started to show symptoms and I sprang into action. I got them medicine, supplements, gave them steam baths when I took a hot shower, and took care of them round the clock for two days until there was zero symptoms in all of them. I have never shown myself anything close to that kind of care. I don't even take days off when I'm sick unless I'm about to collapse, and even then I'll only take one or two until I can be on my feet. Maybe my body can handle that, but my mind and soul can't, and that's what this pain is attacking.
The first time I went to therapy, the therapist kept trying to get me to talk to my inner child. The child that was abused. I couldn't externalize like that. The pain I was feeling felt so immediate. But when I was laying there crying I realized that I was just hurting. I wasn't permanently broken. I wasn't tainted, or dirty. I wasn't a bad person for anything I was forced to do. And everything I'm doing now that I'm angry at myself for is simply because I'm hurting. And it wasn't just me that was hurting, it was the scared and confused little boy that was being hurt but didn't have anybody to take care of him. And I started bawling and apologizing to him.
Yeah, maybe it's about time I go see a shrink again.
So I've started fighting with the insurance company. Again. And I squeezed a phone number out of them, this time not for a drug rehab facility, and left a voicemail to set up an appointment.