Group is difficult

Group was difficult this evening. I had a lot of difficult interactions with Ron. And it’s hard when I’m hurting a lot from the memory from last week, and then he is not sympathetic to me. So it’s hard.

Part of the problem is I don’t quite feel free to bring my therapy experiences into the group, so no one then can help me with them. It’s a little unclear as to what is grist for the group, overall. Today there was a lot of back and forth between Ron and myself about how to respond to other people – he felt I deflect things without absorbing and ‘going deeper’. And he felt I don’t let people react to me, but rush to reassure that I didn’t mean what they’re thinking I meant.

The other problem is I’m in parts, and I don’t really know how to bring that into the group. Because the group is stressful, parts get activated, so I’m kind of letting them speak through me, or translating, in a way. I never find this works out very well. All the most problematic aspects of these parts manifest, and none of the pain and really, some good qualities they have, none of that makes it through for some reason.

I find for therapy to help me, it’s better for me to simply switch into the parts. This half switching drives me crazy.

So between struggling with the therapist, not talking about a major emotional experience I’ve had, and parts going haywire – a f’ing difficult evening was had.

Today I’m grateful for the bright late fall sun, and the walk with a friend I had because of it.

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7 comments
  1. attached said:

    Hugs, Ellen

    I’m sorry for the difficulties you experience in group and the feeling that Ron seeming to tell you what you were doing wrong without acknowledging how you were struggling (at least that is how I read it). I hope your session with Ron went better.

    • Ellen said:

      Yes, that is how it felt to me. I had a good session actually, and a good discussion about the group and now I feel a lot better about it. Ron actually thought I was working hard, when I just assumed he didn’t like me. Go figure. Thanks Di.

  2. glad you were able to do a little mending with him. sorry it went so badly in group. when i did group last year, and again this summer, i def. felt that there were things that i could not bring to the table. it was hard keeping zipped up… and my one-to-one counselor in the program said i should go ahead and share…but i just couldn’t. so i’d sit there with things zooming around my head. sometimes it made it hard to pay attention. not really as bad as parts, at all, just saying i can empathize in my own, little way

    • Ellen said:

      That does sound very similar actually, thanks for empathizing Catherine. In your own little way. 🙂

      It’s not that I’m so special – I just have an issue that is not that common so I feel different, but then I find out, everyone in my group also feels different…..Groups are difficult but today I can see the value, how I’m learning things through the group I would not learn otherwise.

      take care

  3. Ruth said:

    I am glad group is helping even if it is difficult. I think Ron’s purpose for having the group is to bridge some areas that might not happen one on one. Parts are frustrating when it does seem to be a complete switch. I would feel like I was neither here nor there. I am not sure if I explained that very well. Deepest sympathies. I agree with Ron you are working hard and like any hard work it takes a lot to keep going. Hugs.

    • Ruth said:

      Oops that is supposed to read “Parts are frustrating when it does NOT seem to be a complete switch.”

      • Ellen said:

        I’m finding group really interesting, when I’m not hating it anyway. 🙂 It definitely goes into interpersonal areas that individual therapy doesn’t go to.

        The half switching is a problem for me. In social / work situations, it is more functional than complete switching, for obvious reasons, since my parts are all child parts, so that’s what often happens to me. It makes me seem immature and scattered though. And for therapy, it’s better to deal with the part directly.

        Thanks very much for encouraging me Ruth! Hugs to you also.

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