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Therapy?


PitterPatter
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So...I've been thinking more and more lately that I really need some sort of therapy or physciatric help to deal with everything. This last year has been really hard on me. My husband I hadn't even been married to for a year became very agressive and violent towards me, and was almost always drunk. I left him, planning to start up a new relationship, which obviously was a cocktail for disaster with such an abusive person anyway. Long story short, he came after me really bad, and he's in jail now. My fundie family had completely turned their backs on me and taken his side. They've even tried to discredit me to his lawyer and are making bold statements about my dishonesty with no actual proof of dishonest behavior from me. I admitted my Atheism shortly before the attack my now ex-husband (so glad that's finalized!) is imprisoned for. My family doesn't talk about it, but I'm sure that plays into them thinking I lied about the whole thing.

 

I'm glad I have my boyfriend, but that's really all I feel I have. And he doesn't want to hear about the attack obviously, because it's upsetting. He really doesn't want to hear about most of my issues because it's burdensome. And he wasn't raised Christian so he doesn't always understand my angst and self-esteem issues very well. What I'm really concerned about, is how to seek help and find someone I can talk to that isn't religious. I just always have this horrible idea that if I try to seek any help I'll end up having religion peddled to me. I know that a lot of support groups have religious undertones. So I was wondering if anyone has any advice about the type of help I ought to seek out to avoid that. Thanks.

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It's never a bad idea to look for a little help.

 

What you need is someone who's dealt with similar situations before; if s/he isn't listening carefully, helping you look for causes of your own behavior, suggesting plans (nonreligious ones) to deal with conflict, and offering insight, ditch them immediately. If you get a lot of open-ended questions where it sounds like they're going through the motions, reflecting you back at you without a purpose to it, or just aimlessly exploring a situation without isolating the who and why, that won't help, either.

 

If you get any platitudes, prayer suggestions, life verses, church recommendations, or anything similar, bolt.

 

There's no harm in asking up front what the therapist's beliefs or convictions are, and asking for a referral or recommendation to someone else, either. Anyone who's been in the therapist's chair knows sometimes the client/therapist relationship doesn't work. If that person knows that religion is an issue you're unwilling to touch, and they have strong religious convictions, they can suggest someone else in town.

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Ditto for what those two have already said. I knew I needed someone to talk to, so I looked for a holistic psychologist. Beware, a psychiatrist mostly peddles meds, a psychologist would be more of a counselor. Definitely ask them their frame of reference, worldview, etc. I scanned his bookshelves for Bibles or religious books on my first visit, too. Andk if you're in the western pa area, I have a reference!

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