My counseling session today

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by Kjs, Feb 18, 2009.

  1. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    made me really angry. Felt like just walking out and not returning...NONE of us.

    Last week I brought difficult child in for his session. Pick him up at school, drive 45 minutes. And, ofcourse we fought all the way. Doesn't want to go. He doesn't mind once he is there, but it is getting him there. I don't even know what started it. I just know I cried all the way there, we fought. He says nasty things to me, I react with the same. In the waiting room we were still going at it. Homework! therapist and wife (who I see) came out of the back and told us to Chill...breathe. I know another mother came in with kids. difficult child and I weren't yelling, just going back and forth. That is when he threw his phone at me.

    So today I go. I was telling her about what is going on at school. They removed something from IEP, the one teacher who allowed him to come in after school to complete a test said she can no longer do that. Program director wanted therapist's number. I just would like to know what needs to be done to get that back on his IEP about extra test time. All of a suddent I have 3 people sending me emails, wanting release papers signed to talk to therapist. I told them no. As he charges well over $100 for a phone call. Spec. Ed. teacher (who difficult child does not have for any type of class) she was observing a class when she found out he was going to come back to finish and she would not allow that to happen. So now I don't know what they want.

    Anyway - I was told that difficult child and I scared the other lady in the waiting room and we are NOT to act that way. I reminded her that nobody WAS there when we got there and when the lady came in she took all her kids and put them in all these different rooms to do homework. I was again told it is unacceptable. I told her THAT is WHY we are there. If things were GOOD we would NOT be there.

    And difficult child agreed that a portion of his session could be shared. Of course it was about me and how husband and I don't get along, but more that I am the one who gets angry. So she wants to know WHAT I can do about it.

    Well I don't know. husband doesn't talk at all to me. He leaves when I get up for work and doesn't return until I am gone. When I am home it is complete silence, so lets see....WHAT CAN be done? He refuses to acknowledge that I am alive! i talk. I tell him about my day, who I talked to, things that happened, only because I cannot stand the silence. he doesn't respond, but I don't care anymore. Still I am handling everything and I get overwhelmed and ask him for help. He ignores me so much I am sure he doesn't even hear me, anything I ask him to help with does not get done. So - YEP I get angry. difficult child doesn't know how overwhelmed I feel, how tired I am, how much I want help, how much I want someone to talk to. Someone to care.

    Tomorrow husband and I go together to our appointment. It is in the evening. It is just bad, bad timing. They need to pack, difficult child needs to do some school work and go to bed. he won't go to bed if nobody is home. Can't pack his clothes if he IS sleeping. he already told me he is not doing any homework. husband is one who doesn't pack anything until just before he leaves. (I pack in advance and write lists to remind me of things). So tonight he was doing laundry..which was interupted by difficult child's ER visit. I am at work. I work 17 hours then have to stay up until evening for our appointment. which is about 20 miles away, and it is suppose to be snowing.

    I do not want to go. therapist is wonderful with difficult child, but my initial phone call was to have testing done. I want a definate diagnosis. That hasn't happened. School is on my back regarding IEP, and I am just not in the right state of mind to deal with all this.

    Then to tell me we have to be "cheery" when we come in. Well guess what. If I was all cheery I wouldn't be there!
  2. Andy

    Andy Active Member

    :grrr::919Mad: Oh boy can I feel your frustration! Here you are, no one in your home listens to you and then when you go for help, you are asked what are YOU going to do about it? difficult child and husband both need to wake up and take some responsibilities for their own well being.

    difficult child watches as your husband ignores you so why should he do something he doesn't want to do when you ask? Dad doesn't and he wants to be like dad.

    My difficult child has a great therapist. He really sends the message to difficult child that Mom and Dad are in charge of the household and as a kid, difficult child needs to obey Mom and Dad's rules even if he doesn't like them.

    I took easy child to a therapist one time when she was about 10 years old. We did not go back. He pretty much told us to let her set the household routine for the night. He also admitted that he normally does not work with kids and once our "FREE" sessions were done, he would refer us to someone who did. You can bet I wrote a letter to our Human Resources regarding that one - if an employee's child is having problems, the children's therapist better be the one utilized from the start.

    Anyway - I am sharing your frustration. It is 3:16 am and I am still up. Pretty soon one of us can start the morning post? I think I am going to try going back to bed. I hope you find a crack in that cement wall you are facing. The guys being gone for a few days will be a good break for you! Maybe your difficult child will miss you enough to start appreciating you once in a while? (It is the middle of the night - we can dream)
  3. susiestar

    susiestar Roll With It

    Sweetie, what do you get out of these fights? have you looked into the book Co Dependent No More or Boundaries (Boundaries is by Townsend and Cloud).

    Do you want to fight to keep this marriage and become happy? To stay in the marriage and find ways to fulfill yourself with-o your husband (hobbies, clubs, things that make you happy)? To just get away from these two males for a while and let husband see how things are if HE has to deal with school and difficult child?

    There really is nothing you can do to change other people's actions. Just your reactions to them. You can decide not to tolerate things and calmly walk away when they are abusing you, or you can decide to argue and yell and fight. It really IS a choice.

    I can see why they want you to not fight in the waiting room. You don't know what kind of abuse these kids have been through. Can you imagine if those kids have seen their mom be abused by a man or have been abused and then they come to the therapist and see you fighting in the waiting room? It can REALLY scare a child.

    BUT I also understand YOUR frustration. YOU want help. You want the therapist to tell husband and difficult child to treat you well, to be a good partner and child to you. That may not ever be a realistic expectation. I don't know.

    But before you fire the therapist, stop and think about how YOU would feel if you had a chld with PTSD or some other abuse-related problem and came into the therapist and saw a mom and her child fighting to the point that the child threw something at the mom. What would your reaction to that be? Also, maybe the client in session could hear you. They might have been scared. And they were there before you.

    MAybe at the therapist you should save the arguing for in front of the therapist?

    I strongly feel you NEED to head to a domestic violence shelter for some counselling. Let difficult child take the school imposed consequences for not doing homework. Put the responsibility for school calls on your husband. Let HIM handle school for a few weeks while YOU recharge. IF he doesn't want to, tough noogies. Tell everyone who calls from school that they have to call his dad and here is his cell number - you are emotionally drained and they can work this out better than you can.

    Then follow through.

    I am seriously worried about you. What you describe with your husband is emotional abuse and you have lived in it for so long your son thinks it is fine to treat you that way too. PLEASE go to the DV place for help. They are best suited to understanding what you are going through AND they are FREE.

    Sending lots of gentle hugs.
  4. Lothlorien

    Lothlorien Active Member Staff Member

    I agree with Susiestar. You should seek counseling from DV.

    What is your reason for wanting to save this marriage? Do you love him? Do you think he loves you? Are you doing it for the son that throws things at you and no matter what you do, he thinks everything is your fault and that husband can do no wrong, and is verbally abusive?

    I really hate directing a person in this way, but from what you have been describing, this marriage has been over for a very long time and I'm not sure that it is repairable, at least not while you are living together. I really think that you need to file for separation. husband will have to finally deal with things. Son will get over it. You can't keep doing everything for everyone else's sake. You have to find happiness or nothing you do is going to make a difference.
  5. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    I HAVE been through the domestic violence meetings for a very long time. In a very abusive relationship many,many years ago. They did help. That was physically abusive relationship. Verbal too I guess. This is not the same. NOT at all. I was very involved with the family violence shelter. I went on seminars out of town for weekends, I attended all the get togethers, I KNOW what they offer.

    As far as others at the therapist's office, nobody was there. They were in the kitchen area having coffee. Nobody was there. And difficult child and I - we weren't screaming, we were arguing and I don't believe it was loud, more just angry tone. And this is WHY we are going. I don't judge parents and other kids because I have a difficult kid. Nobody knows what goes on until they walk in my shoes. When I see another family having a difficult time with a child, I pay no attention. been there done that. They are trying just as I am. I find it so wrong for parents or adults or kids for that matter to observe a situation and think it is all the parents fault, they don't know what they are doing.
    And guess what, these are parents of easy child's. Let them just for one day have a difficult child.

    As far as school, his behavior is wonderful. He has turned himself around completely and is absolutely wonderful. it is him not doing homework. Teachers are all emailing asking him to come to their classroom during break (30 minutes) to work on things. he cannot be in all classes at one time.
  6. Marcie Mac

    Marcie Mac Just Plain Ole Tired

    Kjs, in one of my counceling sessions I was bemoaning angrily how husband never did anything and was so irresponsible, "I" had to work long hours, "I" had to come home and clean up the house, "I" had to do the laundry, "I" had to get the kids ready for bed, "I" was not given any respect from he and the kids,(not to mention we had the no sex thing either) and, and, and..

    The therapist just looked at me and said people who are co-dependent have a weird built in radar that attract other co-dependents like ants and sugar. All of these things you are complaining about, "you" knew he was like this a sub-concience level
    when you married him.

    And after quite a few sessions, learned I had a thing about control that went back to my childhood. My parents had a really disfunctional marriage, and it effected my mother badly and she drilled and pounded into me that all men were not trustworthy, and I didn't need them, "I" could do anything I wanted by myself.

    Needless to say my first few relationships, I found my abusive father in them. And along came dex who was so into not controlling me. "I" got to be in charge..and then it became overwhelming with all of this responsibility I put on my shoulders and when "I" needed him to be there, he wasnt. He was not the 'in charge' type of guy" and you know that old saying, you can't turn a sows ear into a silk purse?? I was trying and getting really angry I couldn't do that, with my sewing skills, it wasn't even close.

    I respectively disagree with the others that this is a domestic violence situation and from my personal view, more of a case of a sow's ear. I know I was really resistant in therapy for a while taking any personal responsibility of my problems - I didn't want to hear about how this was my fault - how could this possibly be "MY" fault that I get no support and have to take care of everything on my own, but I picked someone that was willing to participate in my codependency - HE needed a mother and I filled that role quite nicely.

    It wasn't until the therapist started to peel the layers off the onion that was myself did I come to some harsh realizations, even my crying was a control issue - if I couldn't bully them into what I wanted, maybe they would feel bad I was crying. It didn't work.

    I am not saying that this is your problem - am just sharing what I went thru and what I learned about myself and dex. He unfortunately never learned anything about himself as it was an effort in futility to get him to even go to counceling. He felt nothing was wrong with him, I was the problem.

    Maybe at this point you need to do therapy on your own for a while. You can't change anybody anyway, but you can change yourself, and understand from where you are comming from.

  7. Kjs

    Kjs Guest

    When I married husband he was NOT like this. It was great. easy child was 3 when I met him. He would come and take easy child out, to work with him, everywhere. We had a wonderful time together. It was when difficult child was born. His first child. He then totally ignored me and easy child. We just didn't exist. Everything was about difficult child from that day forward. There are no rules, he doesn't enforce any consequences, his life (our llife) revolves around what difficult child decides HE is going to do. husband can't possibly do anything because what if difficult child wants to do something. So - no, I didn't know he would be like this when we got married. He certainly wasn't viewing porn when we got married. That is new.
    When psychiatrist asked husband when all this started, he was quiet and said...when difficult child was born. So, see...he knows.
    My childhood was great. My parents were wonderful. Couldn't live without each other. Literally. husband had no parents. Mother left when he was 3, father was a drunk who beat the kids. Died when husband was a young teen in a auto accident.(drunk)
    I honestly believe he has tried so hard NOT to be like his father (beating the kids) that he totally went off the other end.
    Before husband actually had his own child - he was great with easy child and other kids, and great to me.
    He also ignored easy child once difficult child was born. No more playing ball, no more taking him places.
    I am the one who called the therapist/counselors. I am the one trying to repair this broken relationships. But they have to make an effort too. How am I suppose to talk to him about how to resolve things when he doesn't talk to me. When he leaves before I get up for work and returns after I leave? How are rules suppose to be enforced when everytime I walk out the door, he lets difficult child do what he wants anyway?
    easy child had rules, and he followed them. husband would never let easy child speak to me in any tone. And easy child never raised his voice to me. not until last summer.

    I guess I need a vacation too. Away from everything until I can work things out.
  8. house of cards

    house of cards New Member

    You are very close to describing my parent's marriage. I can only say that they went to a marraige counselor once together, my mom went a few more times. The counselor said my Dad was a narrssisist(sp) and asked my Mom why she put up with it...what was she punishing herself for? My Mom would complain loud and long about my Dad's shortcomings. I finally decided it was between them and I could love my Dad despite what she felt. I thought she was cold and hard like a stone and my Dad was weak and needed protection.

    It took becoming my age now to fully understand how little my Dad gave and how high a price my Mom paid to keep it all going.
  9. Star*

    Star* call 911


    There are things you CAN control and things you can NOT control. At this point? You are a self-made control freak. YUP....takes one to know one.
    If I had to guess what made you like that? I'd say over a period of time things in your house got very comfortable. Everyone kinda slid into a roll of complacency and pass the buck was born.

    You came into the marriage with a child. You came into the marriage with HUGE responsibilities. You already knew what it was like to sit up at night with a sick baby, what it was like to try to go to work, keep a house, make dinner, shop for necessities, take care of your husband, go to work.

    A lot of times - complacent people see this as "Oh well, I guess if she is doing all that? She won't mind taking out the trash tonight because I don't feel well." So (as an example) DF maybe wasn't feeling well and one night said "Hey could you do MY chore tonight?" and since the marriage was fresh and new? You complied willingly. No one ever thinks to say "Okay but just this one time." That is drawing a line in the sand and stating your boundaries.

    Eventually you had 2 kids to deal with and to the amazement of some this is wildly controlling - what you used to do for one- you are now doing for two and a husband AND yourself AND a job AND a house. And now you're rushed for time. And you're a little understandibly impatient, maybe cranky, maybe tired, maybe wishing for the good old days of just taking care of yourself - and then you stare at your hubby who is totally CLUELESS whilst laying on the couch that YOU are fuming inside taking care of all the above. So you add a layer of resentment. Not hard to do - most of us would WAY rather keep our traps shut than ever state what our needs are -but how wrong it is and then total resentment happens and then ugly words and then throwing a 90 lb. bud wheel across the yard 30 ft. at your soon to be x's head -nearly an Olympic record but surely enough show of force to be left alone by any smart person...and from there it can work it's way to vindictive, ugly, hateful, out of control self.

    Then and verbal nasties just leak out. Why? Mostly because you're mixed up and acting on instinct. You want everyone around you KNOW how bad you feel and inadvertently your brain assumes if you yell, cry or scream to get your point across they will KNOW you feel lonely, tired, uncared for, angry, hurt. Most people upon seeing someone yell and carry on in public would naturally ASSUME that something is wrong with that person. That they need help or could use a hand. When you do it in your home over and over praying it gets your point across? All it does is make your family view you as a person who isn't able to control themselves and is insane.

    The definition of insane is doing the same thing over and over again expecting a differnt result each time. In yelling and having a fit as an adult woman to get your point across - YOU are behaving insane and nothing is every going to get solved. Think about it - IF your family had one incling of HOW hard you work - would they leave everything to you? Nope. You want them to pitch in - they have no clue what to do. So you have to learn to delegate and detach.

    You wanted to know HOW you start to STOP yelling? Ughhhhh very hard habit to break. I used to think that YELLING and SCREAMING, and tantrums would get my family to HEAR me. I almost used to like screaming and arguing. I swear I put it down as a hobby on a psychiatrist getting to know you list. After realizing that what I really really wanted in my life MORE than anything was peace? I began to transform back to the person I visualized myself to be. Ten years later? OMG I haven't raised my voice in so long - that now when I do? People really DO listen. It's a signal to anyone around me - HELP, PLEASE, COME - DO....for me. NOT OMG there's the crazy Momma yelling and having a seizure again.

    I didn't get that way KJS over-night. I didn't become some screaming, jumping, red faced, pull my hair out, fist pounding, wall kicking person beacuse I got help in my home with things a family helps you with. I got that way beacuse I took on too much responsibility, I had NO earthly idea how to delegate or be a leader, I had not honed any skills in effective communication nor did I know what fighting fair was. I just knew I hurt, I was left to do it all, I was stewing, and I wasted a LOT of my life and a LOT of my childs life behaving that way.

    How do you stop yelling at a child? That's easy. SHUT UP. BE the grownup. Be an avid listener. Learn HOW to talk to people all over again. Don't try to one up someone's bad day, learn how to say NO I WILL NOT, or NO, I don't want to do that, or NO, YOU are going to have to, and my favorite - Well if you don't do it....that's on you. And most importantly - Learn how to walk away - hit a pillow, go for a walk, and step out of your own body when a conflict ensues and watch yourself, watch your actions, LISTEN to HOW you are talking to your child - and then ask yourself - "Gosh why does he talk to others and me the way he does?" Where is he getting it from - AND.....above all - accept the responsiblity for your bad behaviors. You're human - but yelling solves nothing. It's just another layer of resentment.

    You love your family - If you didn't you wouldn't be seeking help for ALL of you. If your son )(#$)(#*+_)@+#_)+@((%(*#&%(*#&%(!@+_+_ in the car all the 20 miles there - TAKE AN IPOD and tune him out. Don't say ANYTHING TO HIM....when he calls you a big fat warthog? Say mmm hmmm....or Ohhhhhh......NO WORDS....

    Thats where I started with Dude - years ago - NO WORDS in the car. UNLESS he asked me a direct question nicely. If he didn't ask nicely? Then my ONLY verbal response was - "I know you are a smart boy and can phrase that question in a more respectful way." And of course I was mocked, made faces at, called names. Many times Dude threatened to jump out of the car at 70 mph. I was to say nothing. One time he picked up a book and threatened to hit me with it. THAT was the last time that happened.....I'm driving along doing my MMMMM mmmmm & ohhhh exercise and he said "IF YOU DON'T TALK TO ME AND STOP Mmmmm and OOO I"M GOING TO HIT YOU WITH THIS BOOK B#(CH." and at that point I whipped the car on the berm at 70mph....hit the breaks and put the car in park and said as calm and collected as I could "If you hit me with anything, ever I will take you to the police station and press charges." With that? It freaked him out - these kids FEED off negativity and LIVE to get a rise out of us. If they get it - THEY win -

    So for now - tell yourself YOU MUST WIN.....and keep your mouth shut....and in the car - on the way there? Just mmmmmhhhhmmm and oh....and LISTEN.

    As for son not doing homework?
    WHO SHOULD DELEGATE and DETACH about the entire homework situation? YOU.....
    Tell him - "Okay bud - here's the deal - it's your homework. I have emails from your teachers so I know what you are supposed to have done each night. As of today - THAT responsibility is yours (delegating) and I will only be asking you if you have it done, not asking to see it (detaching).
    But....when test time comes, and you are not prepared and your grade goes lower then your punishment will be (you decide again delegating) and you won't get that privlege back UNTIL you bring the grade up ONE letter. Your a smart boy, I know you can get good grades and I'll help you if you need me to." THEN LEAVE IT ALONE.

    Did you ever ask his teacher for the emails so you WOULD know what his assignments were? If not???? WHY????? It's the best way to stay on top and let your kid know YOU KNOW and ARE on top of things, but yet you're placing the responsibility back in his lap....his homework - his consequence.

    For the record - I too had an incident in the psychiatrists office like you had. I used to not let go - I had the tenacity for arguing and winning. But when you really look at what you are doing and how you sound and WHY you are doing it - you're not winning - your'e creating MORE problems for yourself and you're damaging yourkids self esteem. Which would you rather have - psycho mom yelling and screaming OR semi-calm Mom reasoning or detaching to your problems? Then if that doesn't work - take yourself to Walmart on a Saturday afternoon, head to the toy aisle - and just LISTEN to how Mothers address their children - after 2 weekend Saturdays of listening to those people? I came to the therapists with a brand new plan. It was awful -

    So before I write a book to you - remember.....mmmm hmmmm and OKay
    and get the teacher to email you son's assignments then let it go -


    Hugs -
  10. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful


    Is does sound like husband is over-compensating for his own childhood. Unfortunately, you can't do anything to change that because you're not the one doing it. So, although I know it's maddening as h*ll, let it go and let husband deal with that issue with the therapist. It's his issue.

    I understand what Star and Marcie are saying because in a milder form I used to be that person. And I think I fell for husband because he didn't try to control me. Unfortunately I didn't realize I was going to wind up in the role of mother to my own husband.:ashamed:

    You have to step off the merry-go-round. Lessen your load. If that means husband and difficult child get to do their own cooking and laundry......well, it sure won't hurt them. If it means difficult child flunks a grade, well, that might give him a new attitude about not doing schoolwork.

    My wake up call was the truck accident. There I am with a fractured skull and 2 shattered shoulders, battered, bruised, in pain, and not all there in the head.......and my husband expects his laundry done and a hot meal on the table, kids expect me to do all the things I normally do.

    I was like WTH? Then smothered in a wave of unappreciation......then mad.......And when it passed, it was......Uh, no. This sooooooo isn't the way it's gonna be anymore.

    I'm not a fighter. I don't yell. (if I do you'd better run) Actions speak louder than words. So, I just stopped. Anything overwhelming I quit doing. husband either picked up the slack or not, kids either pitched in or not. If not, it didn't get done. I can out stubborn just about anyone when I put my mind to it.

    You don't have to work yourself to death and not be appreciated for it.

  11. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Hugs kjs, it sounds like it is YOUR turn to 'drop the ball' and let the you-know-what fly where it may. I know that is the most difficult thing to do as the 'doer' in your home. Letting go is not easy, allowing difficult child to fail and suffer the natural consequences of his actions is not easy. Learning not to blather on about your day to someone who isn't listening anyway is not easy. The silence is deafening - I never understood that expression until I lived with my exh.

    If you can, create a very short list of goals for each day, maybe only one or two or three things for each day (you don't want to overwhelm yourself); such as 1) Go for a walk outside or someplace void of distractions and interruptions, 2) Make a promise to yourself to not get into any arguments with difficult child today, 3) Promise yourself that you will not micromanage difficult child - will not ask about homework or take any calls from the school.

    You have to take baby steps [back] and do less for everyone else. I KNOW it's difficult not to look over difficult child's homework and school issues, but you MUST NOT.

    And I have to agree with Suz - what is it about this man and marriage that you are trying so desperately to save? What is left to save? What indication, if at all, has he given you that he is even remotely interested in re-creating what you may have once had or that he wants to start over, pick up the pieces and begin anew? In what ways has he shown you that he is ready and willing and capable of putting your marriage first, before difficult child? Because that is how a marriage works....the marriage comes before the kiddos. It takes two to make it work but you are the only one making an effort. Just because he's GOING to counseling doesn't mean he's TRYING. In order for real change to occur, he needs to make the necessary adjustments in the way in which he deals with you, talks with you, listens to you, works with you....etc. Instead, it sounds as if he's worse than he ever was.

    At some point, after exerting so much of yourself, you have to admit that whatever you're doing is not working or is not enough - and THAT DOESN'T MEAN YOU'VE FAILED. It simply means that it is not the right thing at the right time and it's out of your control.

    Listen, each of us has to come to this realization on our own and in our own time (I know I am grappling with this right now myself). You will too, when you're ready. In the meantime, I pray that you don't end up in the hospital out of sheer exhaustion. Kjs, you are a loving mother and woman; you deserve to have some peace in your life and happiness; you deserve to be near and around people who want to understand you and care for you, who are receptive to your needs just as you are receptive to theirs. With the way you do so much for others, you are entitled to that. Don't discount yourself!

    Hugs~I'm so sorry for your frustrations and anger and resentment and hope you're able to feel peace real soon.