Ask Dr. Schwartz
Psychotherapy and Mental Health questions
When to Leave Therapy?
This is complicated...I started psycho-analysis with my therapist over 6 years ago. She diagnosed me with Major Depressive Disorder without Atypical Reoccurance. I have also been diagnosed with PTSD by my Psychiatrist (am on 30mg Cymbalta daily) and Internist. Basically I had a sad, difficult, traumatic childhood with terribly abusive, neglectful parents, where physical and sexual abuse were daily happenings. There is one particularly bad event in which I disassociated. So for almost 40 years I reflexively disassociated, and my therapist and I have worked with that to the point where I don't do it as often nor as completely. I am very high functioning and have been married for over 15 years to a very successful man. We have 3 children, 1 from my previous marriage.
In a nutshell, I want to end therapy. I have discussed this with my therapist for the past several months and she is adamant that we continue our sessions twice a week. BTW, I pay out of pocket. I feel like I'm in detention. My moods are so improved that I don't have suicidal thoughts anymore, etc. I offered to stay in 1xweek, and she said in order for our work to continue it had to be twice a week. I think once a week is a solid commitment. Anyhow, my husband is starting to believe she (my therapist) has a crush on me, for many reasons. I'm saddened and confused by her rigid 2xweek rule. So, I left her message and said I was taking a break. I know I need to be in therapy still. Also, a huge dilemma is that we work over the phone as I moved out of her state about 5 years ago. And since I received such poor parenting I decided it's best that I see a therapist in person. Thanks in advance for your professional input.
THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION WILL NOT BE DISPLAYED UNTIL YOU HAVE INDICATED YOUR AGREEMENT WITH THE DISCLAIMER PRINTED JUST BELOW. CLICK THE 'I AGREE' BUTTON TO AGREE TO THESE TERMS AND SEE THE RESPONSE.
- Dr. Schwartz responds to questions about psychotherapy and mental health problems, from the perspective of his training in clinical psychology.
- Dr. Schwartz intends his responses to provide general educational information to the readership of this website; answers should not be understood to be specific advice intended for any particular individual(s).
- Questions submitted to this column are not guaranteed to receive responses.
- No correspondence takes place.
- No ongoing relationship of any sort (including but not limited to any form of professional relationship) is implied or offered by Dr. Schwartz to people submitting questions.
- Dr. Schwartz, Mental Help Net and CenterSite, LLC make no warranties, express or implied, about the information presented in this column. Dr. Schwartz and Mental Help Net disclaim any and all merchantability or warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or liability in connection with the use or misuse of this service.
- Always consult with your psychotherapist, physician, or psychiatrist first before changing any aspect of your treatment regimen. Do not stop your medication or change the dose of your medication without first consulting with your physician.
Helping guide families through time after love one has passed away in the hospital - Rhonda - Apr 30th 2009
I am a RN and work in Intensive Care Unit. I am looking for people to respond to a erasearch quetionaire on how we can better meet the needs of supporting family meembers in the healtcare seting. I have also lost my dad and still find myself picking up the phone and dialing his #, missing him. My strength seems to come from my belief in an afterlife, that he is in heaven and I will see him again. WHat are your thoughts on this? If you would like to participate in respond to my research and help us improve what we do in caring for families, please e-mail me at Donwilt@att.net and I will send you the questions. Thanks for helping me to make a difference
Dealing with Grief - Mavis Symonds - Nov 15th 2008
My mother died three years ago, I saw her the day before but not that morning. I arrived at the nursing home about half an hour after she had died. I got to hold her in my arms the day before and encouraged her to let go as she was ninety four, had lost her leg on her 70th birthday because of melanoma, she had suffered so much over the years, and had developed another lesion on her good leg. I felt angry that I wasnt there when she had passed, as I had made a pact with my mother that when it was her time she would wait until I got there (I live about eight hours drive away from her nursing home). It is now three and a half years and I often think that I will give her a call, when I realise that she is no longer here, I close the doors, take the phone of the hook, play some relaxing music and visualise a beautiful garden, I invite her in and let her know how much I love her, and thank her for sharing her life with me. I now realise that the pact we made was broken the day before she died when I held her and encouraged her to leave, I freed her from that pact in the minutes I spent with her preparing her for her journey. I believe that you do not have to be physically there, if your loved one is in your thoughts and you spend special time remembering them, inviting them in to your quiet time you will be at peace.
GRIEF AND LOSS - - May 8th 2008
I lost my mother about 5 weeks ago and I did not get to see her before she pass away but the biggest problem is I dont think she is dead I getting thinking she is coming back help!!!!!!!!