Therapists for PTSD


#1

So, I need advice. I am really at a loss, and have no where to turn, so I am hoping someone here knows how to help.

I have lost my job due to the downturn of the economy, and really really poor planning of my state (I was a teacher’s aide, trying to save money to go back to school and get my certification to teach…) so money is tight. Thank God my husband is in no danger of losing his job, and with his job comes medical insurance, which covers mental health issues. The problem is, only a small handful of therapists in my area are acceptable to my healthcare.

I have been seeing one therapist for the last 3 months or so, and it’s pretty much hit the fan. Our last two sessions were arguements where she was trying to convince me that I am a judgemental person full of spite because I believe homosexuality is wrong. I won’t get into the conversations we’ve had about abortion. I am a very politically aware 23 year old, so these are issues important to me, and relate to why I feel so alone in my highly liberal state. She has determined (and I agree, based on symptoms) that I am suffering from PTSD from being physically abused, and some other horrific things that went on when I was a teen and small child. Part of this is a loss of interest in things relating to faith (especially since it was people of faith that pushed me over the edge in college, and I had a complete mental overload. I almost ended up in a hospital) and when I ask her to help me with this loss of interest in faith, her advice is to leave my church, accept a broader view of God, and seek him in nature, rather than a man-made book. Needless to say my feelings of loneliness and “unacceptability” have worsened since this assault on my most cherished beliefs has started.

Anyway, to make a long story short (ha!), how can I find a catholic therapist? CCS (Catholic Community Services) does exist in my area, but my healthcare doesn’t cover religious therapists, and I am pretty sure I won’t qualify for financial help. Which sucks because we are making enough to disqualify us from help, but not enough to afford sessions at full price with them. All the while I am stuck in a downward spiral, where I feel the only way to overcome the trauma I have faced is to leave God and morality behind, which I know it is ONLY through God I can be healed.

Does anyone know what I can do about this?


#2

I am 19 and was recently diagnosed with PTSD for the same reasons, abusive childhood.

Someone mentioned to me a while back that there are resources within the church for people who need counseling but have limited financial resources. The problem with your situation is, like you said, PTSD is not something just anyone can treat.

Is this the first bad experience you’ve had with a secular therapist? I would shop around and exhaust all possible options with the resources you do have first. Find someone to help you and mention that your faith is an important part of who you are. There very could be therapists out there who may not necessarily be part of a religious organization, but whom you would be more compatible with. I had a few bad and some downright traumatic experiences with mental health professionals (and I’ve seen many) before I finally found the one I’m working with now who I swear was sent to me straight from heaven. And the funny thing is I went in to see him after swearing up and down I would never talk to another therapist as long as I lived (long story). You’ve just gotta be persistent, keep praying, and keep advocating for yourself.

So ya, that would be my advice. Utilize what you already have to the furthest possible extent, and if that still doesn’t work, look into Catholic charity programs for people in need of counseling.


#3

Perhaps you don’t necessarily need a Catholic therapist–just a therapist who is not anti-Catholic in their practice. If I were you, I would not return to this counselor you have been seeing. She has acted extremely unprofessional by judging you based on her own perverse biases. I would write her a letter calmly explaining why you are never going to see her again and let her know that rather than helping you, she only hurt your progress in healing these old wounds by acting so unprofessionally and indulging her own biases. I would also send a copy of the letter to her supervisor, and let her know that you are.

Perhaps www.catholictherapists.com could help you find a good counselor in your area–I’ve seen it tossed out there on these forums before. I don’t know if the insurance would cover it though.

The best thing you can do for yourself while you are searching for your new counselor is to talk with your priest. He may be able to refer you to someone. He should be able to offer you some counsel on your spiritual crisis. You could also spend some time in Adoration, handing it all over to Him. Get involved with the church activities and ministries. They will help you make some good Catholic friends and help you to not feel so alone. Also, remember He is always with you. You are never alone.

I am praying for you. God bless you in your healing process.


#4

thanks for all your advice guys. I’ve been making phone calls most of today, and I am hoping to set up times to “interview” counsellors before I pick a new one. The hard thing is I have to cut tires with the one I am seeing now, and part ofmy issue is extreme cowardice with stuff like this. sigh


#5

I totally feel you on that one. I’ve tried sticking it out with therapists who I really wasn’t getting along with just because I didn’t have the nerve to speak up on my own behalf. She should *at least *be professional enough to not ask questions. It is part of their training not to take it personally if a patient wants to transfer out. Just be cordial about it, don’t feel like you need to go into a long explaination. After you find a therapist that you will get along with better, just tell her for various reasons you feel it would be better if you stopped meeting. You don’t have to elaborate.

Sure, it might be akward for a couple minutes, but once you hang up the phone you don’t ever have to talk to her again if you don’t want to.


#6

Thanks a lot. I worry too much I guess because one of the things she told me was to speak up if something isn’t working.

Then she started calling my judgemental for my religious views. I’m usually kind of a warrior of faith with these things, but with her I feel totally defenseless and vulnerable. I feel utterly terrified of what she might say. LOL. WHich is frustrating because she KNOWS one of my issues is being a total abject coward.

And the main reason I am leaving is I don’t feel comfortable with a counsellor with images of pagan gods and idols in her office (and tells me to look at astrology seriously) tinkering in my brain. Even if we NEVER talk about faith or morals which is, unforunately, central to my life, and my issues.


#7

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