Is going to a therapist helpful?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Honora88, Jun 8, 2010.

  1. Honora88

    Honora88 Member

    How many of you go to a therapist and is it helpful?

    What is your experience? Do you see your symptoms getting better when you talk about it?

    Or do you just feel psychologically better?

    [This Message was Edited on 06/08/2010]
    [This Message was Edited on 06/08/2010]
  2. victoria

    victoria New Member

    If you have no one to talk to, I can see that it would be of great help to relieve the stress to have someone understanding to talk to. And hopefully be constructive in dealing with those around you who might be problematic. And/or be helpful in making your life easier in some way that you might be missing. It can be extremely helpful to have someone objective and supportive to talk to.... letting go of some of the stress by talking and possibly getting helpful advice can help ease pain, fatigue etc.

    If you're having pain, it can be really helpful to go to those who employ deep relaxation, meditation, hypnosis, to help with pain levels. This can take some time to be effective tho it doesn't necessarily mean weekly visits forever.

    Just 2 ideas for which it can help.
  3. wendysj

    wendysj New Member

    Hi honora88,

    I went to a councelor to help me figure some things out. I was 26 and had been sick for a few years. I was still working and wanting to still live my life the same way as before I got sick. I needed someone help me figure out how to live a happy life inside my new limitations.

    I got a recommendation from a co-worker for this councelor. She was better than I could imagine a therapist could be. She was able to teach me how to change my perspective, only focus on things within my control and be patient. She also helped me consider taking Lexapro... I did start taking it and WOW!, what a difference. My anxiety was almost immediately under control.

    Anyway, my short answer would be, "Yes, I feel way better psychologically. No, I still felt terrible physically."

    Good luck finding someone you connect with.

  4. Misfit101

    Misfit101 New Member

    I went to a therapist briefly. I wanted to root out some crap from my life. And at 52yo...theres a ton of it. This particular therapist had a very confrontational approach. That does NOT work with my personality. Im likely to tell you to kiss my behind. I exercised what i considered remarkable restraint when he screamed at me and all i did was get up and leave. Id like to try again with someone else but i dont have the energy right now. If this is something youre considering there might be a part of you that thinks it would help. Id encourage you to give it a try. You never know.
  5. rockgor

    rockgor Well-Known Member

    Therapy was very helpful for me.

    So were meds, hospitalization and the 12 step group Emotions Anonymous.

    My employer provided health insurance w/ Kaiser Permanente. Kaiser had a combination
    class/therapy session for 5-12 people. The classes were taught by psychiatric social
    workers and psychologists. The therapy was called cognitive because it aims to
    change one's patterns of thinking.

    You can sample same by reading "Feeling Good" by David Burns. The book
    includes some exercises. Dr. Burns says you have to do them, not just read
    about them.

    My depression has also lessened in the last couple years by taking supplements:
    Vitamin D3 and grapeseed extract as recommended by Jaminhealth. Have also
    been wearing the Vitamin B12 patch one day a week.

    Good luck

  6. Honora88

    Honora88 Member

    THat's horrible and unprofessional.
  7. monica33flowers

    monica33flowers New Member

    I see both. The psychiatrist for the drugs and the psycotherapist for the mind. My psychotherapist is awesome and she is the only one I can talk to who truly understands what is happening with my body and my mind. Without her I probably would still be in denial about these diseases.

    The psychotherapist truly is my beacon of light at the end of the tunnel. She also has helped me try new things that have helped my pain and anxiety.
  8. bigmama2

    bigmama2 New Member

    it totally depends! in some situations it is very helpful, other situations it is very unhelpful (thats putting it mildly).

    for people w psychological issues it can be helpful. but it is KEY to have a therapist who is knowledgable and understanding of CFS/FM. or at least they must be willing to learn about it.

    good luck
  9. AuntTammie

    AuntTammie New Member

    I went through a ton of abuse starting as a child (not from my parents, thank God), and as a result, I developed some poor ways of coping. When things become bad enough, I decided to go into therapy, and it helped me a ton. It helped so much that I decided to get a degree in counseling so I could help others with similar issues.

    So, obviously, I believe that it can be very beneficial. However, I also know that there are some really rotten therapists out there, and there are also some who are just not a good fit with certain clients. Therapy is a relationship, and like any relationship some people's personalities just do not mesh. In such instances, an ethical counselor would refer the client to someone else.

    Unfortunately, in SOME cases, Aussie's statement,
    "I think people sometimes just waste a lot of time (and money) on this stuff. Its a BUSINESS. They depend on your repeat custom and the more business they get the happier they are about it." is true. I stress the word SOME, though....and actually I would say that is true in VERY FEW cases.

    Good counselors are there because they truly want to help people; not for the money. Counseling is not a job people will get rich doing - not even close. And, during school we kind of joked about the fact that if we do a good job, we are putting ourselves out of work (but that is supposed to be the goal.....we want the client to get better....and it is not like there won't be more clients, so it's not like good therapists are actually worried about losing clients/money becasue their clients get better. Seriously, there are generally waiting lists for therapists. They are not going to be hurting becasue they helped a client to the point where that client no longer needs them.)

    Now as far as therapy and ME/CFS goes, I would say that it totally depends on why you want to see a therapist. If you think that therapy will cure your ME/CFS, then you won't get anything out of it becasue therapy will not cure ME/CFS any more than it will cure AIDS, cancer, MS, etc. ME/CFS is not a psychological illness, so therapy won't help make it go away.

    ME/CFS does produce feelings of depression, anxiety, anger, etc, though, and therapy can help you to deal with those feelings. It can also help you to learn ways to pace yourself and to accept that you need to pace yourself; to stop feeling guilty about having to slow down and to accept that you are just not going to be able to be as productive as you once were. It can help you to come up with new ways to get things done that need to be done and to prioritize what really does need to be done and what does not.....and to find resources for help meeting basic needs.

    Therapy can help with the grieving process, too, which can be a big part of chronic illness. It can help you to find new ways of gaining self worth and a sense of purpose when you can no longer fulfill the roles you used to have. And, it can simply give you an understanding, listening ear, which in itself can be very helpful, esp if friends and family just don't understand or don't believe that ME/CSF is a real illness, etc.

    And, given that stress and depression, etc can suppress the immune system and can interfere with sleep, exacerbate pain , and just generally cause symptoms to flare, in that way therapy can help with some symptoms, too. (That is NOT saying that ME/CFS is psychological, because it is NOT. It can be worsened by mental health issues, though, as can other physical illnesses. ) So, will therapy cure ME/CFS? Absolutely not. Can it help in other ways? Definitely.

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