Yesterday I went to group therapy. Again I took half a xanax in order to cope with the huge amounts of fear I was feeling.
This time I talked for a while, pretty well at the start of the group. I said I had PTSD, which I got from being abused as a child, and that because the abuse happened when I was so young, I have some kind of odd symptoms. I said how I was having some trouble staying present in the group. Then I talked about how I fell into dissociation, or de-realization, after the group the first time I went, and how I’m trying not to have that happen again, which is why I sometimes leave the room. And I said I was afraid of the group.
People asked me some questions, which was nice actually, because I’m surprised that anyone is interested. One woman asked me what it was like to feel two-dimensional? I didn’t have a really good answer…I said it’s kind of like if you’ve had a shock, like been in a car accident, how you feel after that. And I talked about how when I’m in that state, I get stuck, and can’t function very well. For instance if I go to the kitchen to get something to eat, I get stuck staring at the wall and don’t get any food.
One fellow said he could relate to what I said, but didn’t provide details. It was OK. I did feel more present having talked about myself. The conversation then veered away to one of the participant’s anger with his family. There was a lot of space though – I could have kept talking, but just found it difficult so I didn’t.
I ended up leaving one time, towards the end of the group. I find pressure builds up and I just must leave. I went to the washroom and hung out in a stall for quite a long time.
When I came back, I listened for a while to the young man talking about his family. Then I said that I could really relate to being silenced and then going home and imploding, which was what he was talking about. Then I wasn’t sure that was what I was ‘supposed’ to be saying, if that was helpful, so I said, is that what I’m supposed to be saying? Is it OK?
Then there was this whole discussion about there being no rules about what can be said. Which I thought was ridiculous. Of course there are all kinds of rules, they’re just not being talked about. There are rules in every social situation.
I totally lost my fear at this point and argued that there were rules…it was kind of interesting. I just didn’t care what anyone thought, and said what I thought.
I went home partly dissociated. I just don’t know what the solution to that is. How to stay in one piece through the stress of group therapy. Because I did talk, but still, I ended up dissociated. Not as bad as the first time though.
Thanks for all the comments on my last post. They really helped. I’ll respond, but am not feeling good. When I’m better.