Question: It seems that when my friends go to therapy, they end up being mad at their parents. I don’t see why this has to happen; I love my folks and think I had a good childhood. Relationships are a struggle for me and I would like to change that, but I don’t want to be turned against my parents.
It is not a necessary for you to “get mad” at your parents to have success in therapy. After all, as adults it is our job to take responsibility for ourselves and not just blame our parents for being inadequate. Although understanding your relationship with your parents is part of the therapeutic process, it is not the end.
Question: My boyfriend and I are fighting a lot and he refuses to go to a therapist with me. I love him, and don’t want to leave, but I can’t handle all the fights. He says a stranger can’t help us – and that we can work it out by ourselves. The problem is we don’t and nothing is changing. What can I do?
If he won’t go to a therapist, go by yourself. You will learn about yourself and your relationship and most likely will grow in your own self estimation. You will become better equipped to deal with your boyfriend and more able to know what you have a right to expect in a relationship.
Many men agree to see a therapist once their partner has been going and obviously getting something from the sessions, so you may be surprised about him.
Question: My therapist says she doesn’t deal with repressed memories and that I can get over my Uncle’s abuse of me with out “doing memories”. I don’t want to have to remember it either, but I keep having these strong images come to me of him raping me and they won’t go away. What does that mean and what should I do?
Some therapists don’t want to help clients recover repressed memories because of recent litigation that has accused therapists of planting “false” memories. While it is true that memories can be unreliable, especial in detail, you seem to be experiencing vivid but incomplete memories and resolving these is an important part of your therapy.
Question: My therapist says I have depression, and I guess I do, but he wants me to try antidepressants and I don’t want to use medication. What can I do?
It would be important to know how severe your depression is to make specific suggestions. You may be interested in a brief Self Evaluation for Depression or information about Types of Depression. Depression can be very serious and should be treated. Successful treatment can be life-altering even for mild to moderate depression. Fortunately, if you want to avoid the use of medication there are some options, but what will works depends a great deal on how severe your depression is.