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Thread: My counselor canceled our appointment

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by frugalone View Post
    I've never come up with an action plan because it terrifies me. I've been told by counselors that I should "think about what I want my life to look like." It terrifies me. I don't know how many times I've been down this road before, and I don't know if I can do it. We had the "how it affects me" chat last year in counseling.
    You need to do the work. You say you've heard it before. There is a reason for that.....do the work. No counselor can fix it for you. They listen. They guide. They coach. But YOU have to do the work.

  2. #22
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    Every failure of therapy is not the fault of the client not doing the work. And of course there are cases were people are successful in improving whatever they were working on despite the therapy they have gotten more than because of it. Some therapists just suck in many ways. Other times it's not exactly anyone's fault, it's just that the therapist's world view may be so alien to the client's worldview and vice versa, that there never is any real bridge between them, no real empathy (despite trying). Those are the therapists that guide but in the OPPOSITE direction of one's own intuition, guide but in the opposite direction of one's own heart. I don't mean one's self-destruction, and I think most of the time we know the difference even if it takes a little self-examination (exceptions might be when in deep despair).
    If you want something to get done, ask a busy person. If you want them to have a nervous breakdown that is.

  3. #23
    Senior Member JaneV2.0's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by frugalone View Post
    ...
    My life feels like this: No matter which way I turn, no matter what problem I try to solve, there is a wall in front of it. It's not just the stuff w/spouse: it's my job, my own problems (because I am not without them--my depression did not come from living with him--I've had problems all my life), etc. etc. I have a feeling this poor counselor is not going to be able to help much at all.
    Depression can be paralyzing; then problems pile up; then you get more depressed and more paralyzed--and the cycle continues. Soon even the tiniest move seems insurmountable. You need more practical help than a therapist can likely provide. Have you tried a local mental health facility that has peer counseling or other services?

  4. #24
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    It sounds like your DH qualifies for SSI which is for people that can't work but did not earn enough work credits on their own record. I worked in that field and it can take a long time. If you keep getting denied and keep appealing eventually it will go before a law judge that will hire a vocational expert to help him make the decision. If you win you will get back pay. As Jane noted there may be limits to it. If he had his 40 quarters then he would get back pay for the entire time it took to wait. A lawyer will take a third of it. I have seen many people do it themselves if they can fill out the paperwork properly and gather the medical records. Also you have to appeal timely or you will get thrown back to square one. Typically our clients only got between 300-500/month on SSI. SSDI pays much better. However after 2 years they qualify for Medicare even if not the correct age and there may be other benefits too. If you left him he could qualify for section 8 housing, food stamps, etc. There are also places with para-legals that can file the paperwork for less then an attorney. I would make applying mandatory. People only change when the pain of staying the same is more painful then actually making a change. Also no one can do the work for you. WE had a saying that if we were working harder then our clients we were failing them. They are adults and need to do the work.

  5. #25
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Teacher Terry View Post
    People only change when the pain of staying the same is more painful then actually making a change. Also no one can do the work for you. WE had a saying that if we were working harder then our clients we were failing them. They are adults and need to do the work.
    As I read these posts, I kept thinking that I've learned "pain is not a stopping point".

    At this point I see nothing to lose with sitting down with DH and, as Float On said, putting things in "I" terms. Perhaps you'll find the combination of words that either clarifies the situation in your mind -- or in DH's. If it accomplishes nothing, you've spent a little time but are you any worse off?

    Ditto with the free counselor. While the first meeting may not have inspired, perhaps talking with her will identify common threads or insights which now are hidden behind layers. In the end, it's free except for your time. Until you can find another counseling resource, I don't think getting what you can out of this one really hurts.

    I agree with the others that at least applying for disability income is worthwhile given the length of time it takes. Is it possible DH was ever covered under a private disability policy with one of his construction employers? Do either of you belong to any affinity groups ("American Construction and Home Engineers Society") from which you could get benefits even as simple as a discount for counseling or a free hour with a lawyer/paralegal? Does Your County offer anything like that? Is that kind of research something DH could do at home while you work?

    I feel for you, frugalone. You and DH have been pummeled with double- and triple-whammies. I get that, after a while, it seems impossible to get up again. But it does not sound like you can continue for long on the current path. Time to make at least the progress that you can.
    If Americans expended even a fraction of the energy on civic engagement that we spend on consumer ideology, our democracy would be much healthier. Can you imagine people camping out to vote? -- Charles Roberts, Amherst, Mass., Nov. 25, 2006

  6. #26
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    Thank you, Yppej.

    Quote Originally Posted by Yppej View Post
    Closed means you have to be a codependent. Others cannot attend.

  7. #27
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    In 12 step parlance, a closed meeting means that you qualify for membership in that group. So a non alcoholic should not go to a closed AA meeting.

    With Al-Anon, a qualifier is being affected by the drinking of someone you know or love, so a closed meeting would require that, which is not hard, since almost everyone is affected by someone else's drinking.

  8. #28
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    Do you ever imagine how you would feel if all of a sudden you were on your own with a new job you really enjoyed and your DH was no longer a worry to you? Imagining that, does it bring a great sense of relief and a sense of other possibilities? I know it sounds odd, but often we stick with our misery because it is familiar and change is so very scary. I have found that when things seem very depressing (and I have my own little drama at present) that if I spend a great deal of time thinking about a better outcome, even if it is only "pretend", that it helps me from spiraling further downward. The "what ifs". That and taking small practical steps to turn things around - maybe just one small effort a day. There was a time in my marriage when I had to take long walks just to get away from DH at a point when he had some destructive habits. One day, I came home from a long walk and said that I was moving on - for my own health and sanity. He knew I was serious and that he would need to make big changes to go forward with me. And he did. I am sorry you are feeling so down and I truly hope YOU can turn things around.

  9. #29
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    I am not sure what you mean. We have a local mental health center with day programs where you're in group therapy part of the day, doing team building exercises at other times, going to the supermarket (to learn practical skills) at other times. There are different levels of these programs. I was in one 30 years ago for several months. You can't attend one of these and hold down a job. My friend Mary is in one right now, actually.

    I called them to see what they would charge for counseling (I used to go to a therapist there, separately from the aforementioned program) and they're charging about the same--$90 a visit.

    I'm not sure what peer counseling is. I'm going to Google it.

    Quote Originally Posted by JaneV2.0 View Post
    Depression can be paralyzing; then problems pile up; then you get more depressed and more paralyzed--and the cycle continues. Soon even the tiniest move seems insurmountable. You need more practical help than a therapist can likely provide. Have you tried a local mental health facility that has peer counseling or other services?

  10. #30
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    Oh, I totally agree. I had a crackpot for a therapist for a very short time years ago. She was convinced my panic attacks were as a result of too much sugar in my diet. Every time I went, I got a weirder and more uncomfortable vibe from her. Finally, I called her on the phone & said I was not coming back. She said, "You can't just quit therapy like that."

    Watch me.

    Never went back. When I tell people about her, they are generally outraged on my behalf at some of the things she said to me.


    Quote Originally Posted by ApatheticNoMore View Post
    Every failure of therapy is not the fault of the client not doing the work. And of course there are cases were people are successful in improving whatever they were working on despite the therapy they have gotten more than because of it. Some therapists just suck in many ways. Other times it's not exactly anyone's fault, it's just that the therapist's world view may be so alien to the client's worldview and vice versa, that there never is any real bridge between them, no real empathy (despite trying). Those are the therapists that guide but in the OPPOSITE direction of one's own intuition, guide but in the opposite direction of one's own heart. I don't mean one's self-destruction, and I think most of the time we know the difference even if it takes a little self-examination (exceptions might be when in deep despair).

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