Therapy: my dissociation habit

Note: no one may care about this but me.  I’m totally okay with this.

Just got off Skype with my therapist, Ann.  (I figure her name’s common enough I might as well use it.)  I had a rather startling realization during the session — that my dissociating from reality and hiding in what I call “Fantasyland” when I’m severely depressed is actually similar to the way other depressed people might use alcohol or drugs.  It’s something that temporarily helps by letting me escape the pain, but is terrible for me in the long run because I can’t function in the real world when I do it.  So I’m going to try to reframe it so that it’s not my safety net anymore and is instead something negative.

Another useful thing from the session is making an Evernote notebook of reminders about good things in my life — a digital “happy box”, basically.  Something to look at when I’m having problems with depression or anxiety.  Pics of the Valkyrie and my family, cute cat pics found online, screencap of my last semester’s grades, a file of stupid jokes, etc.  So I’m going to set that up today after I get some homework done.

And finally, Ann said that when she was back in school a prof told her class that on average, a person thinks 8 negative things when looking in the mirror (not necessarily about one’s looks, either).  Prof said it takes 3 positives to counteract a negative, so I’m taping a list to the bathroom mirror.  It’s one of those ideas that sounds dumb but actually works.

I hope that when I get my MSW I can be at least half as good a counselor as Ann is…

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