Episode 89: Debunking 8 Common Myths About Therapy
Episode 89: Debunking 8 Common Myths About Therapy
There are thousands of false representations of therapy in the media and general public. Some of these misconceptions about the therapeutic process may prevent people from seeking help or fully opening up in their sessions. In this week’s episode Alyssa sets the record straight on 8 common myths about going to therapy.
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Alyssa Scolari [00:23]:
Hello, everybody. Welcome back. Or if you’re new, welcome. And if you’re old, welcome back. Well, not old, you know what I mean. It is good to be here. This is the Light After Trauma Podcast, and I am your host, Alyssa Scolari. Solo episode today, which is like… They might be my favorites. I think solo episodes are my favorites. I don’t know. I love both. I feel like I’ve had some really good guest interviews, so I’ve got some really good guest episodes coming up for you all. But yeah, there’s just something that hits different about these solo episodes. And it’s nice to be able to talk to you all today, because let me tell you, I am having a shit week. And not just a week where things weren’t really that great, I was in a grumbly mood, no, this was a no good, terrible, very bad week.
Alyssa Scolari [01:22]:
Is that a book? I feel like that’s a book that I read in my childhood. It’s not like Alexander’s No Good, Terrible, Horrible, Very Bad Day or something like that. But regardless, that’s the kind of week that I’ve had where everything that can go wrong, did go wrong. It shouldn’t be that. That’s a little bit of an exaggeration, quite honestly, but it really was a horrible, horrible week. And I would be lying if I told you I wasn’t feeling like an absolute bag of shit right now, but I am trying to use my humor therapy to get through it. And podcasting always helps me feel better. So I’m just going to have venting corner for a second.
Alyssa Scolari [02:13]:
And skippers, if you want to skip, feel free to skip. You don’t have to listen to me at all, but I’m just going to have a little venting corner here. So, a few things. Number one, I haven’t really talked much about this, but a few years ago when I was really in like the worst of my PTSD, and by the way, I was made to be as bad as I was because I had a healthcare provider/therapist who was telling me I needed to be on all of these medications in order to function, so a huge red flag. It’s something that I will talk to you all about one day, but just can’t talk about it right now.
Alyssa Scolari [02:57]:
And maybe this was about three years ago, because about two and a half years ago, I realized that these medications were actually making me sicker, and I’m not saying that medication is bad, but what I was on was making me sicker. And I started the process of coming off of all of these medications. It has taken me two and a half years, because on Tuesday, so a week ago before this episode is airing, I stopped taking the last dose of the last medication that I was coming off of, and the withdrawal of all three of the medications that I was on has been horrendous and has left me with lifelong side effects, or what I believe will be lifelong, because I should have never been on that combination of medications.
Alyssa Scolari [03:55]:
I digress. This is a topic for another time. The point that I’m trying to make here is the withdrawal is horrendous, absolutely horrendous. And so I have been going through it this week. I can’t sleep, I am sweating, I am twitching. I am in a rage that is so intense that I feel like I can’t control myself. I am feeling almost like, if you’re a Harry Potter fan are familiar with Harry Potter, the third book, Prisoner of Azkaban, the Dementors. I feel like I have a Dementor or multiple Dementors around me everywhere.
Alyssa Scolari [04:37]:
For those of you who aren’t familiar, Dementors are these creatures that suck the happiness out of your soul, essentially, and make you feel as if you’ll never be cheerful again. That is how I am feeling. I’m not sleeping. I’m just really, really irritable. I’m going through it. And then on top of that, I got my period, which like wasn’t supposed to happen because I just had it two weeks ago. And I think what I didn’t realize or what nobody tells you after endometriosis surgery is that number one, your first couple periods are excruciatingly painful because your body is still healing. And number two, your periods are going to be super irregular, all over the place, because again, your body is still healing.
Alyssa Scolari [05:27]:
Was I told that? Absolutely not. Did I have to learn that on the internet after I panicked because I thought that there was something wrong with me? Yes. So I wasn’t expecting this. The cramps have kept me up all night as well, I’ve been in just a ton of pain mentally, physically. And on top of that, on top of that, yes, there is more, as many of you know, and if you’re new in my more recent episodes, I talk about how I started EMDR. I started EMDR two weeks ago, and I was ghosted by my therapist. I mean ghosted, he didn’t show up for our appointment, my second appointment.
Alyssa Scolari [06:22]:
People are… Well, not people. People are humans, therapists are humans, and we all make mistakes. And if you’re on my Instagram and you’ve watched some of my stories where I’m talking about that therapist, you know that this was the final straw in a series of events where there have been issues with scheduling and not necessarily, scheduling and not on my end, but multiple times where this therapist has reached out to me and been like, “Hey, what time are we meeting?” And I would then have to tell them, or they would get the time wrong. And then our schedules would be messed up because I thought we were meeting at this time because that’s what we said, but then they told me that we were meeting another time.
Alyssa Scolari [07:09]:
And so it’s just been a series of unfortunate events that have… maybe isolated might not seem like a big deal, but when put together are showing a pattern that this is not somebody who’s going to be reliable. And if you haven’t listened to the previous episodes about EMDR, what you need to know about EMDR is that it is extremely dangerous work, potentially. And EMDR can cause folks with a trauma history to unravel a little bit. It’s very intense, it’s extremely painful, and it leaves people feeling raw. It is not safe to have a therapist who is unreliable.
Alyssa Scolari [07:52]:
And I think what really got to me is that I had this appointment on Tuesday, and then on Monday, this therapy has texted me and was like, “Wait, what time are we meeting on Thursday?” And I was like, “We’re not meeting on Thursday, we’re meeting on Tuesday.” And I was like, “Does that still work with you?” And they were like, “Yeah, yeah, yeah, that works.” So this was less than 24 hours before our appointment. I get to the appointment and therapist isn’t there, the therapist didn’t show up. And the excuse that I was given for why they didn’t show up really was not good and was very blatantly a lie and very much just came off as like, you totally forgot, you completely forgot about the appointment.
Alyssa Scolari [08:33]:
The therapist didn’t call me to make sure I was okay, because I had one session of EMDR, for all they know, I could have been completely unraveled, going out of my mind. I could have been suicidal, but they neither called nor cared to call and check in on any of that and apologize for this abandonment. I was literally abandoned at the door. Now, I don’t really have a relationship with that person. I liked our first session. So it didn’t hit me as hard, but it really pisses me off. And it does hurt a little bit, because you know what? I shouldn’t have to be more organized than my therapist. That’s not okay.
Alyssa Scolari [09:11]:
And I could feel myself being like, “Okay, I’m clearly the more organized one. I’m the more structured one.” And you know what? It’s not okay for your therapist to keep reaching out to you multiple times to ask you when you’re meeting, it’s not appropriate. So I am done. And I have to now find a new therapist, which, if you’ve been looking for a therapist or if you’re someone who has had to find a therapist in this pandemic, you know it has been nearly impossible to find somebody.
Alyssa Scolari [09:41]:
So I am now having to go back through and search for therapists. Mind you, after I’ve already done one EMDR session, so I’m a little bit raw and a little bit unraveled. I am honestly just pissed off. Those are like the three things that happened. And there’s been some other things that honestly, I’m not going to bore you with, but it was just one thing after the next, after the next this week. And I’m like, “Fuck. Why?” Not to mention, it’s just been shitty weather, which has really affected my mood.
Alyssa Scolari [10:16]:
I never realized how badly I had seasonal depression until this year, and I’m like, “Damn, I need the sunshine in my life.” So that’s what I got. That’s what I got. It’s been a crap week and I am just trying to get through it as best as I can and manage my emotions and my triggers. I think I’m doing really well, all things considered, but I’m feeling pretty frustrated and pretty let down, honestly, very let down with the whole therapist thing, because I was really looking forward to the EMDR process. And now I have to take some time off and look and search and take the time out.
Alyssa Scolari [10:59]:
I don’t feel like it, but I know I have to because I have a big trip coming up this summer and I really want to work out some things and calm my nervous system a little bit before my big trip. So, that is that. I’ll leave you with that. If you have hung in with me for this long, thank you for letting me vent. I appreciate it. And today, we are going to talk about some common myths for therapy. What people believe happens or takes place in therapy versus what actually happens. And this is really piggybacking off of last week’s episode where I talk about how to find the right therapist for you.
Alyssa Scolari [11:45]:
Now I want to talk about what you can expect from therapy process and what some of the common myths are from therapy that really might not be true and that might, in all honesty, keep you from going to therapy if you believed them to be true. And I cannot take credit for this episode idea, I have to give this credit to my husband, Dave, Dave with the win. I think it’s a great idea. I think it’s fantastic because people have many misconceptions about what therapy actually is. And I would’ve never thought to do something like this, but my husband, I know we were talking the other day about the podcast, and he was like, “You should really do an episode on this.” And I was like, “Damn, Dave, all right. All right.” So kudos to Dave for this episode topic, because I’m really excited about it.
Alyssa Scolari [12:37]:
All right. So let’s get into it. So myth number one. Myth number one is that only crazy… Ugh, I hate the word, or mentally ill people, severely mentally ill people, need to talk to therapists. You have to meet some kind of criteria for a diagnosis in order to go and speak to a therapist. This one is straightforward and pretty easy. And of course, I’m sure many of this, that is so not true. First of all, the word crazy… Listen, this crazy is still a part of my language, and I try very hard to take it out of my language because I think it’s a very stigmatizing word.
Alyssa Scolari [13:23]:
Crazy is what we have used historically to describe people who truly do have mental illnesses or mental health disorders, so I really don’t like the word crazy. So that word is just… I hate it. Sometimes I use it, sometimes it slips. I really try to be really good about it and correct myself if I do use that word. But regardless, you do not have to have mental illness or meet the criteria for a mental health disorder to go to therapy. Absolutely not. Anybody can go to therapy. And quite honestly, everybody should go to therapy.
Alyssa Scolari [14:08]:
Listen, I understand, therapy is not for everybody, and that is absolutely fine. But, these last few years in particular have been so difficult that I’m hard pressed to find somebody who’s not in therapy these days, it just seems to be so common. Whether you just need some help navigating your relationship or whether you are just is having some mild anxiety that you want to talk to somebody about or whether you just really want to have somebody that you feel like you can talk to, we all need to talk about stuff, we all do. So sometimes you just might want somebody who can hold a safe space for you for one hour, once a week or once a month or once every other week, and that alone can be hugely powerful.
Alyssa Scolari [15:05]:
So you absolutely don’t have to have any kind of mental health diagnosis to go to therapy. I think that most of us, I won’t say most of us. I think that probably the folks who are listening to this podcast know that, or most of the folks who are listening to this podcast know that, but I don’t think many people realize that. So the next one, myth number two, is that all you do in therapy is talk about how everything is tied back to your parents and how your mom and dad are to blame for everything. A lot of people don’t want to go to therapy because they have no interest in rehashing the past.
Alyssa Scolari [15:49]:
Some people are processors and they need to go back and they need to rehash the past and they need to talk about it and they need to tell somebody what happened in order to be able to work through it. Other people don’t want to do that. Other people don’t want to sit there and talk about how it was their mom’s fault, or it was their dad’s fault, or it was their grandma’s fault, or their grandpa’s fault. They don’t want to talk about that. They want to feel better without having to dive into the past. And a lot of people, I think, believe that that’s just not possible and that therapy just looks like them having to go through every gruesome detail of their past. And that is so not true.
Alyssa Scolari [16:31]:
I know a lot of sexual abuse survivors actually tend to be hesitant to start therapy because they’re like, “I cannot recount the details of my sexual abuse to somebody.” And I am here to tell you that you don’t have to. I didn’t know this myself at all, and it’s part of what I think made me hesitant to start going to therapy because I was like, “I can’t talk about this stuff in detail. I don’t want to, I don’t even know if I’m going to trust the person I’m talking to.” So please don’t let that stop you from going to therapy because there are things that therapists do that have nothing to do with bringing up the past.
Alyssa Scolari [17:13]:
Listen, are we going to bring it up in the sense that we’re like, “Oh, you have a history of this. And therefore we need this type of treatment”? Yes. But it’s not going to be like, “Well, if you’re not willing to tell me the details of your abuse, then you’re really not ready for therapy.” That’s not the case at all. Therapists, myself included, have clients who come in and work with them and we never know the details of their abuse. I have people that have come in my office and I have never known the details of what happened to them, because we are focused on the present, we are focused on what’s coming up right now, and how we can change that. We are focused on regulating the nervous system so that you can move forward in your future and live a happy and healthy life.
Alyssa Scolari [18:06]:
Myth number three. Myth number three is that all therapy is only a venting session, and I’m not going because I’m just going to pay somebody to listen to me and it’s going to be useless. Well, I am here to tell you that if you are feeling like every single session, if you have therapy and you feel like every single session is venting session, and that your therapist is barely even saying anything in response to you, or if you are afraid to go to therapy because you feel like it might be a waste of money because you think that every single session is just venting, that is so not the case.
Alyssa Scolari [18:45]:
And again, if you are feeling like you are just venting in therapy and getting nothing out of it, then you should talk to your therapist about that. You absolutely should bring that up with your therapist because that is so not the case. Sometimes I try to not cut people off, but I try to redirect people. And I try to be very open about it. If I can see that somebody’s just venting, I never want to take advantage of somebody’s time. And so if I feel like somebody is just venting, I want to ask them, as a therapist, I’m going to be like, “Hey, you had a really rough week and it seems like you’ve got a lot you want to say. Do you want me to sit here and let you drive so that you can get all of this out. I’ll sit in the passenger seat. You take the wheel, you drive, so you can get all of this out. And then when you’re done and you’re good and ready, whether it’s this session or the next session, then we can go from there.”
Alyssa Scolari [19:48]:
And sometimes they’ll say yes, and sometimes they’ll be like, “No, no, that’s not what I want.” Because therapy should not always be just venting, therapy should be a dialogue. And sometimes if I feel like somebody is just venting, I want to make them aware of it because what I don’t want to happen is them to come in vent for the entire hour and then be like, “Oh my God, all I did was just repeat everything that I told my friend last night and I feel no different.” I want to be able to allow space to be able to support that person, help that person, give them tools, give them feedback, link patterns that I see, ask them what could have been done differently, what can we do differently in the future? Have you tried this? Have you tried that? What do you think about this is? Etc. So it is really not just a venting session, I promise you that.
Alyssa Scolari [20:41]:
Myth number four, this is one of my favorites, one of my favorites. And it’s actually one of my favorites because I think it’s the most important and it breaks my heart so much. Myth number four is I can’t tell my therapist how I’m truly feeling about my suicidal thoughts because they’re going to send me to a hospital and I’m going to get admitted. They’re going to lock me up and throw away the key. I cannot even begin to tell you how common of a fear this is. It is such a common fear, especially among, I think children, because children before they get to a therapist, typically have spoken to their guidance counselors in school.
Alyssa Scolari [21:31]:
And if children have shared with their guidance counselors in school that they feel suicidal, their guidance counselors have to send them to a hospital, like have to. So kids, I think a lot of times already have this idea in their head that it’s not okay to be suicidal. And it is infuriating to me. I understand that schools do this because it’s like a liability thing, but it is infuriating to me how much we criminalize. My complaint is a reflection on the system, honestly, because as we criminalize people who have suicidal thoughts, it’s like punishment. It’s like, “Oh, you want to hurt yourself? Okay. Well, now you have to go to this hospital where you’re going to be further traumatized.”
Alyssa Scolari [22:18]:
And this isn’t just kids, it’s adults too. You’re going to get evaluated, they’re going to pat you down. They’re going to make sure you don’t have any weapons on you. Nothing that you can use to hurt yourself. And I think that’s what people jump to when they think like, “I’m having suicidal thoughts. I can’t tell anybody this.” Now, listen, there are some times where we do have to send you to the hospital or to a crisis center. I’m going to tell you what those times are. And this might differ to pending on therapist’s comfort levels, but it shouldn’t differ too much for the most part, and it’s a conversation that your therapist should absolutely have with you within the first session.
Alyssa Scolari [23:04]:
I never let people walk out of my office without having this conversation with them the first time I meet them. So if you are feeling suicidal, I am not going to send you to the hospital or your therapist shouldn’t send you to the hospital right away. If you tell me that you have a plan to end your life and that you cannot keep yourself safe, you have to go to a hospital. It’s not necessarily that you walk in and you’re like, “I am so overwhelmed. I fucking hate everything and I don’t want to live anymore.” At that point, I’m not like, “Oh, you said it. I’m picking up the phone. I’m calling 911. The ambulance is on their way. I’m going to handcuff you to the fricking couch so that you can’t move.”
Alyssa Scolari [23:54]:
I think this is what so many people envision. It’s more the case that it’s like, if you can’t tell me how you’re going to be safe, if you are in such a bad place that you can’t use skills, if you don’t have anybody at home that can help you, if you don’t have a support system, and all that is there is you and your plan to end your life and there’s nothing else to intervene, yeah, we got to send you to the hospital. We have to, because can’t help you if you’re dead. And regardless of what people may believe, we care so, so much. And at that point, as a therapist who you see maybe once a week, it’s out of our control.
Alyssa Scolari [24:39]:
It’s a horrible place to be in, but if you are not in that place and you are like, “I’m suicidal and I’ve thought about how I might do it, but I don’t plan to do it right now, I don’t really want to do it right now. I have a loving family at home,” or, “I have a partner at home that knows,” or, “I have this protective factor or that protective factor, a friend group, or my religion, or my this or that,” whatever it can be. I’m drawing a blank right now, we’re not going to send you to the hospital for that. Or again, I’m not sending somebody to the hospital for that. Now, if those symptoms are continuing to get worse, then we might need to talk about a higher level of care, not necessarily the hospital.
Alyssa Scolari [25:31]:
A hospital or a crisis center is for exactly that, a crisis, which is, “I am either going to hurt myself or somebody else and I am not well enough to be able to use any skills right now. I don’t think I can stop it. This feels out of my control. I don’t want anybody’s help, I am done on this earth. Goodbye.” We’ve got to get you to the hospital. And this can differ in some cases, perhaps you had a suicide attempt and then you just come out of a hospital and maybe you don’t necessarily plan on taking your life right then in that moment, but maybe you still have a plan. You still have a plan and you still want to die.
Alyssa Scolari [26:14]:
Well, I’m probably going to be like, “Yeah, no, I’m still not good enough as a once a week outpatient therapist, we need you in a higher level of care,” whether that’s inpatient, whether that’s partial hospitalization, whatever that may be. So it really does differ case by case, but I say this not to scare you, but I say this to try to comfort you, because I think that we are afraid to talk about our suicidal thoughts. And listen, I hate that the system is the way that it is because the hospitals are set up to feel like a punishment. It’s not a nice, warm, cozy place where you can go and rest your head and feel like people are going to take care of you. It’s not a pretty site to be in a hospital. I know.
Alyssa Scolari [26:54]:
I would know, I had to go to one. So it’s horrible, it’s traumatizing. And I wish it was better. I hate the system because then you know what, when somebody goes to a hospital once, they feel less inclined to speak up about their suicidal thoughts if they have them again because it was so traumatizing the first time. I wish we could turn this whole fucking system on its head and I hate it. But with that being said, this is not me telling you to not speak out. If you are having suicidal thoughts or feelings, you need to, because at the end of the day, whatever you witness in a hospital, you can heal from. You cannot heal if you are dead.
Alyssa Scolari [27:38]:
So whatever shitty things happen in a hospital, you know what, we’ll work through that, we will get through that. I will help you. The brain is amazing. I can’t necessarily help you, your therapist will help you. I could help you if you’re one of my clients, but the brain is incredibly neuroplasticity. The brain has the ability to heal, you will heal. You cannot heal if you are not alive. So if you are feeling like you cannot keep your self safe, yes, we’ve got to get you to a hospital. But if you are just feeling like I don’t really want to be here anymore, I wish I could just close my eyes and not wake up, and you don’t necessarily have a full-fledged plan, I’m not sending to the hospital. Whew, I feel like that was really long-winded. I am clearly very passionate about that. So I hope that makes sense.
Alyssa Scolari [28:28]:
Myth number five, therapy is not confidential. Some people are afraid to talk to a therapist because they think that therapists can share their information. People don’t realize the level of confidentiality that we need to abide by. It is the law, and we could get in so much trouble for breaking confidentiality. So that is not at all the case. We can break confidentiality if we have your written permission to do so in the form of a release of information. So you sign a release of information that says, I am allowing my therapist to speak to, I don’t know, my primary care doctor, let’s say for example. We can also break confidentiality if you are threatening to hurt somebody else, we have a duty to warn.
Alyssa Scolari [29:24]:
So we have to warn somebody if you are threatening to hurt that person. And we also can break confidentiality if we feel that you are a danger to yourself. So a danger to someone else or a danger to yourself, those are the only times we can break confidentiality. Other than that, we cannot, will not, do not say anything. We cannot even, let’s say, you’re in therapy and your partner is really, really worried about you, and your partner decides that they’re going to call me. And they’re like, “Hey, it’s so and so’s boyfriend, I’m just really, really worried. I really want to talk to you.” I won’t even return that phone call. And if I pick up the phone and they tell me who they are, I will say, “I can neither confirm nor deny anybody working with me without a release of the information. Goodbye.”
Alyssa Scolari [30:23]:
I cannot even confirm that you are a client. Therapist cannot even confirm that you are a client. That is how extensive our confidentiality is. I cannot. If you are a child and you have a parent who sends me an email, I don’t say much. Now, I technically can. The law is a little bit different with kids depending on the age, but because I am so protective of people’s privacy and confidentiality, I often tell parents upfront, like, “This is how I operate.” Because technically depending on their age, according to the law, there is information and that I have to disclose and divulge to parents.
Alyssa Scolari [31:04]:
It’s a whole thing, not something that I’m going to get into, but as an adult, I could never even confirm originally, even if it was a doctor who called me, if they didn’t have a release of information, I would say, “I can either confirm nor deny that I am working with this person without a release of information. Goodbye.” So please know that therapy is entire confidential unless they have a release of information, your therapist has a release of information, or there is a threat or danger of harm to oneself or someone else.
Alyssa Scolari [31:36]:
Myth number six, you’ll be in therapy forever. Oh, heck, no. The goal is to put ourselves out of a job as therapists. I want to put myself out of a job. I don’t want you to be in therapy forever, that is not at all the goal. My goal is to make it so that you are okay to go out there and live on your own. Now, if you want to be in therapy forever, that is a different thing, a whole different thing. But the way that I work is yes, I do believe sometimes we do need to talk about the past, if you want to, if you’re comfortable with that.
Alyssa Scolari [32:15]:
But my goal was to help regulate your nervous system and to help your brain heal from the trauma that you endured. That way you can live your life. So no, it’s really never a therapist job to meet you and be like, “Oh, we’re going to know each other forever.” No, unless you want that. But therapy is time consuming, it can be expensive, and I’m aware of that. So my goal is to help you on your way and make myself unnecessary. And that’s the way it should be for all therapists, really.
Alyssa Scolari [32:51]:
Myth number seven. Are we on myth number seven at this point? I think so. I think we are. All therapy is this same? No, no, no, not true. All therapy is very, very different. Every single therapist, even therapists who practice the same exact techniques will be different, because as therapists, we can’t help, but bring who we are into the job, into our practice. So therapy with every single person is going to be different, but there’s also many different types of therapy. There’s dialectical behavioral therapy, where we’re very heavily working on skills to help you stay emotionally regulated so that the intensity of your emotions isn’t off the charts.
Alyssa Scolari [33:40]:
There’s cognitive behavioral therapy, where we are working to change your thoughts and change the narrative in your head. There’s EMDR, which I’ve talked about on here. There are a million different types of therapy out there, a million different approaches, and it is not a one-size-fits-all, which is why, as I mentioned in last week’s episode, it’s really important to try out a different therapist if you’re not feeling like you’re getting what you want from therapist you have, or talk to your therapist, because sometimes I take on different approaches based on what the feedback is from my client.
Alyssa Scolari [34:25]:
All right. The last one that I have for you, which is myth number eight, is therapists will tell you what to do and they will give you advice. This isn’t necessarily the case at all, really. I don’t tell people what to do. I hate to be told what to do, and I never want anyone telling me at all what to do, literally with anything, to the point where if you came in and told me the building was on fire and that I needed to jump out the window, I’ll be like, “No, because you told me what to do.” I am just, I hate it so much. And nobody likes it. Nobody likes to be told what to do. So we don’t do that. We are not there to be like, “Oh, well, if you want to be happy, you just have to do this, this, this, and this. And then you’ll be happy.”
Alyssa Scolari [35:16]:
We are there to help you figure out how you can be happy. Now, yes, we are going to teach you skills, we are going to offer you ideas and maybe try to advise you on your options, but we will never say, “Oh, yeah, you need to take that job.” Or, “No, you don’t need to take that job.” Or, “You need to break up with that person.” I think this is also why a lot of people steer clear from going to therapy, especially when they’re in relationship troubles, because people are so used to talking to… Have you ever had like a relationship trouble and you will talk to like a close friend or a family member and they’ll be like, “You just need to dump his ass,” or, “You just need to dump her ass or their ass”?
Alyssa Scolari [36:05]:
And it’s like, “No, that’s not what I’m doing, I don’t want to.” I think people are afraid of going to therapy because they don’t want to hear that same crap. They don’t want hear a therapist being like, “Ugh, you didn’t break up with him again this week? Well, what are you doing? Why aren’t you doing that?” No, we don’t play like that. We don’t do that. If you are not breaking up with somebody, that’s your prerogative. That’s your choice, it’s your decision to make. Maybe you don’t need to, maybe you’re going to marry this person. Why would I tell you to break up with somebody?
Alyssa Scolari [36:38]:
If you’re being abused, even then, I still wouldn’t tell you what to do. I would call out what’s happening. I will say, “This is abuse. This is gas lighting. This is this, this is that.” But I’m not going to say, “You need to leave and you need to leave now.” And the same holds true for really any kind of situation, again, unless you are threatening to harm someone else, or you are really threatening to hurt yourself, then that’s when I’m like, “You have to go to a hospital,” or, “I have to call this person and warn them.” That’s really the only time where therapists should be telling you directly what you have to do. We are there to guide you, we are there to let you know your options, we are there to point out things you might not see because of blind spots. We all have them, but we are not there to give you advice and tell you what to do. We are here to empower you, to make those decisions for yourself.
Alyssa Scolari [37:40]:
So those are the eight myths. There you have it. This has been a fun episode. This is fun to talk about. I hope that this helps. And if you notice any of these things that are coming up in your therapy session, talk to your therapist about it because it’s important. It’s important. I think this is what keeps people from, maybe not even… just that it keeps people from going to therapy, but it might also keep people from opening up when they are in therapy. So it’s important stuff and I felt like it was a really good supplement to last week’s episode, where we talked about how to find the right therapist for you. So that said, the one thing that I did forget to mention in the beginning of this episode is that March is over, so we are all done with the fundraiser for Ukraine.
Alyssa Scolari [38:34]:
In case you missed it, anybody who became a Patreon member for the month of March, any money that you donated from March, I was going to personally match, and we were going to donate it to Doctors Without Borders to fund the efforts in Ukraine. So we got about $50 and then I put in 60 of my own dollars. So we together are donating $110 to Ukraine, which is great. And if you are wanting to see the receipt for that, I have posted it on the Instagram page, our Instagram page, and that is lightaftertrauma. So head on over to our Instagram, you can see the receipt for the donation. Thank you so much for that.
Alyssa Scolari [39:21]:
You can still become a Patreon member. Any support you’re able to give to the podcast would be great, whether it’s becoming a Patreon member, leaving a review, I love it all. So thankful for the support, you all are amazing. I’m holding you in the light, and I will see you next week.
Alyssa Scolari [39:39]:
Thanks for listening everyone. For more information, please head over to lightaftertrauma.com, or you can also follow us on social media. On Instagram, we are @lightaftertrauma, and on Twitter, it is @lightafterpod. Lastly, please head over to patreon.com/lightaftertrauma to support our show. We are asking for $5 a month, which is the equivalent to a cup of coffee at Starbucks. So please head on over, again, that’s patreon.com/lightaftertrauma. Thank you. And we appreciate your support.