my friend and boyfriend think i need therapy. (they're probably right.) they made me promise i would at least get an assessment. so, my friend helped me make an appointment with her dr., and the night before i basically had a panic attack because i was so scared of going. that appointment ended up not happening, since i had a standby appointment, not being a regular patient. i'm still really scared of going, partly because i don't want to talk, partly because i'm afraid something is wrong with me, partly because i don't want to get put on medication. mostly, i'm scared that the dr. won't be able to help me.
if you have gone to a psychiatrist, did you find it helped? how was your experience? does anyone have any advice about how to calm myself down so i'm not so scared?
it has been in my experience that counselors and shrinks(sorry to put it so roughly) will degrade you. My friend goes to see a counselor because of her aggressive behavior and her counselor actually screamed at her. I have always found that having a friend who will let you vent these bad emotions to them helps to be happier. I am depressed too so I know how it feels to have so much agony and pain and nowhere to get rid of it. Another thing that helps is sports, like karate. Karate will help you release negative energy from your body by focusing the mind on the way you move. Plus it is a relatively easy sport. I hope I have helped you some.
Posts: 2 | From: Austin, Texas, US | Registered: Feb 2005
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I'm afraid I have to disagree completely with SquirrelyGurl (except about the excercise). I don't think the negative experiences she sites are at all typical, and frankly if a couselor screams at you there's something seriously wrong with their counseling and they should be reported to somebody.
Using someone you are emotionally involved with as a therapist is generally a bad idea. There's certainly nothing wrong with talking to friends about issues you're having, but constant reliance on them can put a strain on the relationship. Often they are too close to you to be particularly helpful when you're struggling through a serious problem or trying to change something about yourself. Talking to a therapist can be very liberating. They are confidential and objective and can provide a lot of insight.
As for medication, no reliable therapist is going to put you on medication right off the bat. Medication is only helpful with certain problems, like chemical imbalances. Otherwise it will only mask the problem, not fix it. So it's unlikely that the therapist will put you on medication (certainly not after a first visit) and even if they do suggest medication, you don't have to take it if you don't want to. (Also keep in mind that there's no shame in being on medication, and that it can certainly be helpful in a lot of cases if it isn't treated as a miracle pill)
As for your fear that the doctor won't be able to help you, you'll never know unless you try. This person is trained to help other people work through problems, they'll probably at least be able to provide you with a new perspective and some food for thought. And if they don't help, you'll be no worse off than you are now.
I would definately give it a try. I have a box full of positive therapy stories. Try not to worry about it so much. I wish I could be more helpful about ways to calm yourself down. Anyway, Good luck!
[This message has been edited by spinnersis (edited 02-12-2005).]
I agree with Spinnersis. In addition, when you first speak to or meet a therapist, you can check out whether you feel you can work with him/her. Ask about the things that are concerning you - e.g. their attitude to medication, what methods they will use, what is expected of you, confidentiality, cost (if any).....
I don't know what the system is in Canada, but in the UK only psychiatrists and GPs can prescribe medication, whilst psychologists counsellors and psychotherapists generally use talking methods and cannot prescribe drugs. Here some therapists require a referral from a GP, but there plenty who will see you on self-referral, including those in private practice and therapists employed by charities. I suggest you start investigating the options in your country, so that you have the information to enable you to identify how you would like to get help. A school or college counsellor or a GP are some places where you could initially go to for advice.
------------------ Londongirl Thirtysomething and not actually counting (And I really don't know what I weigh)
[This message has been edited by Londongirl (edited 02-12-2005).]
in canada, i'm pretty sure only psychiatrists and other people who have gone through med school can prescribe meds. i figured out a way to get my mom to help me get a referral from my family doctor without her really getting clued in. (i'm probably going to a hospital that has a deptarment that specializes in youth.)
and i've managed to calm down a bit myself. but thank you still for the other advice!
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