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  1. #1
    Arthur Dent's Avatar Monkey man
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    An account of my therapy

    I started therapy about a month ago. It's been going in a way that I think you may find interesting. Some of you may have seen this someplace else, bit well, here it is, this is the account of my second session:


    You'll see, to keep it short, since I'm 6 I've had a pathological fear to express interest in women. It didn't bothered me until I was 16, and it got so frustrating over the years that I finally overcame the fear of my parents finding out, and started seeing a therapist to try to fix this problem. A week ago, on our second session, I mentioned this idea I've got for quite a while that says that I can imagine people liking me, but not really loving me; then it was when it got interesting. We talked about what women want then and she told me that I need to accept the fact that I am a good looking guy and that I probably cause always a good first impression and I'm wasting that. She also told me that being attractive, a good listener, intelligent, and not a fan of getting drunk, high or smoking, I'm quite a good catch, and she insisted that all that is a truth I need to get in my head. She cleared up that she wasn't hitting on me or just complimenting me for the sake of it. I like that she's not very PC, according to her if I wasn't attractive she would just gave me the typical "what only matters is what's inside" talk. Not that she thinks the inside doesn't matter, but she acknowledges the fact that good looking people have a head-start when approaching others.

    Then she told me that I need to physically loosen up because I'm too tense, and I need to improve eye contact. I try to keep it but eventually I end up looking away. And she said I need to move more loosely so I need to make dancing movements every day.

    And the she told me that my homework for the next appointment, which nest Thursday, I have to try to hit on her. Well she told me I must make a plan and practice with her, while she makes observations and corrections to what I'll be doing, like role playing.

    Still some friends have told me this is very unusual and that she was seemingly hitting on me (she's young and attractive, on her early 30s, maximum). And others told me it was normal. People in both sides have been to therapy so I'm not sure. Personally I think she was trying to lift my mood, and if want to get somewhere, I better start to believe what she told me. But is hard to believe one is allegedly desirable when one is alone (I recognize women have been interested in me to some degree to another).

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    Arthur Dent's Avatar Monkey man
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    And then this is what happened last Thursday:

    First she asked me how I've been and I mentioned that despite being mostly ok, I did had depressive episodes. she asked me if I've seen any psychiatrist (I have not), and if those episodes have affected my academic performance, I told her that they may make me do things at the last moment but I still get my good grades. She didn't asked more about it and moved on to the programmed exercise, so I guess she doesn't think is something to worry as long as it doesn't stop me from functioning, but I know I had my own part about forgetting to ask how to deal in the short term with depression and frustration.

    For the exercise itself, I started asking her in what scenario was I supposed to flirt with her. She made things easier by laying out a scenario where we would pretend she was a random girl doing nothing in the college's library, and I would approach her with any excuse to start talking. It took me a couple minutes to muster the courage to start talking to her (pretending I was approaching a stranger of course, I do talk normally to her as a psychologist). I made up some dumb excuse about school paperwork,and she pretended to be receptive and responsive, while playing to be a freshman having difficulty with her physics class. At that point I feel I was getting stuck making the conversation too academic, and she made a random move (still in the role-playing context) by taking out her phone and saying her boyfriend was calling her. That instantly disconcerted me because I didn't had the slightest idea of how to react. She of course noticed, and told me that precisely she wanted to see my reaction. Then she told me to relax and keep pretending as if the phone thing didn't happened, but then she changed her character by making her less shy, and probably noticing that I was getting stuck, she asked me if I have or had a girlfriend. I answered that no, and she asked me why, to what I mentioned school keeping me busy, she asked if that was the only reason and there was the first time in the conversation I started to mumble because besides the school excuse I had nothing, not unless I would've mentioned my pathological fear to express interest in women, which of course would be a very dumb thing to do whether while pretending or in a eventual real case. Here she made a pause and told me that I should not say to woman I just met that I've never had a girlfriend, she didn't told me to lie either, just to say something vague like "I've had some friends here and there, but nothing really serious, I guess the right person hasn't come by yet".

    Back to the role-playing, she asked me what kind of woman was I looking for. I said that an understanding one (later she said it was very good that Ididn't mentioned something physical, as that would've been a complete buzzkill), and she replied that she was a very understanding person. She asked me what else was I looking for and I can't really remember why, I got stuck again, may be thinking that anything I would mention would sound like if I'm asking too much (no self worth, feeling undeserving, all that crap). Again she made a pause and told me that it was ok, and that I need to pay attention to any time I mention I like something and the woman says that she fits that description or likes that as well, and that when such thing happens is the appropriate moment to make a move and ask the person out. Then she made a change and and wanted me to take more initiative, so this time I would be the one asking her what she was looking for on a man, and what I should do was to tell her that I was those things and compliment her. So I asked her and she told me that she was looking for a sensitive, caring, thoughtful man. I tried to say first that I fitted that description but started to mumble unsure what to do. She told me to start again and trying to make the talk about her, since I already and material to work with. Here I technically took out the best of me, and told her that she seemed to be a sensitive and thoughtful person herself, who deserved someone like the one she described, that I am a thoughtful and sensitive person as well, and for what she said she was looking for someone like her, the same way I'm looking for someone like me. Then I started mumbling again, once again clueless what to do next. She called it a day and told me I had listened well to her indications and I performed well making a fluid conversation in general. But I said technically my best because well, I felt like an idiot talking to her like that, talking like if I knew her deply, I felt really phony and lame, like Johnny Bravo, but no funny.

    However more than a couple times she had to call me upon my extremely tense body language, like holding my own hands and playing nervously with my fingers, or trying to hide my legs below my chair, things that I had to make an effort to control. Then she told me that for the next appointment, I will have to go all out and captivate her (in the role.playing, of course), and that this time she wouldn't make pauses to let me regain my grip or advice me, this time I will have to figure out how to keep it going myself. The interesting part, is that we will do the exercise twice. She will play a no receptive woman, nearly only giving yes or no answers, so the whole weight of the conversation will be over me. In the other scenario, she will play a very responsive and daring woman... and that her act will include putting her hand in my leg, grabbing my hand and putting her face close to mine. She pointed that at any point that would make me uncomfortable I must say it and she will stop (surely will make me nervous but no way I'll ask her to stop ), and also made clear that it won't me touching her because "this is not what this is about". When she was explaining this she did put her hand over mine and over my knee, and I instantly tensed. She said that I needed to let loose all that tension, so she showed me a couple relaxation exercises I need to practice daily. The idea is that I'll be cooler for next appointment, which will be in a month from now.

    At some point, I forgot when, she asked me if then there wasn't anyone that was interested in me, I told her that no and she said "are you sure?", to which I answered that, well, as long as I knew it, no, nobody is interested in me right now, she said "ok" and moved on.

    Something potentially very messy happened this same morning. My mom went to an appointment at the very same clinic that I was (nothing serious just checking a small allergy), just two hours earlier, and she told me that she almost got the 11:20 appointment. My appointment was scheduled at 11:30 and the psych saw me at 11:40. It's a small clinic and had my mom taken that appointment, it would had been very likely that she would see me. I guess sometimes I get a weird luck.

    I will do the relaxation exercises. About how will approach her, my brain is fried at the moment, so I'll think later of that. I guess that's it.



    Later I wrote this, and although I'm not as sad as back then, the thoughts are the same:

    This frustration doesn't even lets me think clearly. I don't think having a girlfriend would make everything perfect and be a fairy tale, but... [BEEP] I'm starting to doubt it will even take away the misery, I'll probably end up putting a lot of pressure on her and make her leave me. I have deep issues of self worth and lack of self esteem. Now I'm thinking this is more serious than the act itself of approaching women and express interest in them. What is the point of torturing myself about any likeable girl I met online if I'm supposed to be working on how to meet them in person? And let's not forget all my worries about me thinking very few women won't find me boring, at least in this stupid uncultured country. My psychologist says that if the girl feels initially attracted to me the main thing I should do to have a successful relationship with her is to always listen to her. But I no longer know what do I want, am I wanting a person with whom I will have a lot in common and we can nerd it out to the top? Or just someone to hang out and with whom I wouldn't initially share much more than an initial attraction, and then we will build that special connection over time? I guess that's the problem of not having experience, and not really having an idea of how are things supposed to work. I used to criticize that many people were in a relationship simply to be with someone, instead of having a special connection, one where life wouldn't be as wonderful at all without it, but if Libby hadn't been a damned tease, I would gladly had a relationship with her initially just on the basis that we liked each either despite I don't really have anything in common with her. Am I being a romantic fool, or may be not even having a redeeming quality and simply being a complete delusional idiot? I wish I know how life works, but dammit, everyone else is probably as clueless as me, just that they're not whiny little bitches.

    As you can see, I'm not having the best appreciation for myself right now, how the [BEEP] am I supposed to have it, I'm the one making myself so miserable anyway, and I hate myself for that. Every time I'm not busy and feeling like [BEEP] I will try to think through how to carry on the exercise of the next appointment with my psych, but also I will print what I wrote above, because I think these issues and thoughts are something to take care of, and may be more imperative than learning how to hit on women.

  3. #3
    Coffee's Avatar
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    Your therapist's approach is def unconventional... but as long as it doesn't make you feel uncomfortable and she respects the therapist-client boundaries and doesn't do anything unethical, then I suppose it's ok. If you do get uncomfortable then tell her to stop and she should stop. Try not to confuse feelings of discomfort in this situation to feelings of discomfort generally with women. I don't have anything of value to add apart from that because it seems like you've worked through a lot of the things yourself and you're making practical progress in therapy. Just be careful that she doesn't cross over any lines because if she does, not only is that unhelpful to you, but therapy won't be useful anymore.

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    Otherside's Avatar
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    Yeah as Coffee said above, the therapists approach is unconventinal, but as long as it doesn't make you uncomfortable and respects the "therapist client boundaries" then it's fine, I guess. After all, going by the book 100% won't work for everyone. And I hope everyone works out for you.

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    Arthur Dent's Avatar Monkey man
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    Thank you both. I sure it hope goes well too

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    Arthur Dent's Avatar Monkey man
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    So this is what happened yesterday (I've been so damned busy this week):


    As I had predicted it, we didn't end up having time to do the role playing. She asked me how I've been and I answered that awful, since the most of the last weeks I've been pretty much only shifting between overwhelming stress about school or overwhelming episodes of depression. She pointed out that more than depression sounded like melancholic episodes product of my cognitive distortions. I agree with her but in any case she told me that whenever I'm feeling like that, instead of just sit here letting the misery eat me up, I must distract myself with whatever activity, preferably by going outside. Seems pretty damn obvious but when I'm in that state I barely can think.

    Exploring those cognitive distortions she asked me to tell her my qualities... and I got mute. I don't consider myself the worst thing around, but neither I see anything remarkable about me, just average; and I feel quite uncomfortable complimenting myself. Although when I achieve some things I'm capable of be proud of myself. It's hard for me to distinguish the line between modesty and self loathing. Trying to get over that I told her that I'm a good listener, responsible, and willing to help others. Then we discussed that if many different people keeps telling me that I am intelligent, that if I'm one of the very few who hasn't failed a course in my class and I'm doing great in what many people consider a very difficult career, I must accept that I'm an intelligent person, so I have to say "I am intelligent" instead of "people say I'm intelligent". She made the distinction that I'm intellectually intelligent, but I have a lot to do on my emotional intelligence (the way I see it I'm freaking retarded when it comes to that one). After telling her as well my defects (I emphasized my impatience), she also said that I need to improve my introspection, because if I only focus on the bad things, and of course that's wrong.

    Then I told her how uncomfortable I had felt in the previous exercise at the end when I was the most flirty, and how I had felt very lame, fake, and manipulative. She got my point and explained me that I missed the part when she said that at that point we were pretending that we already knew each other for a while, as she agrees with me that going and complimenting someone you just knew as if you knew them deeply is plain lame and won't work for a thing. She made clear once again at when I just get to know someone I only have to be friendly and look out for common interests and experiences. Here she gave me my first assignment, which is to to read a chapter of a book about introspection and based on that make a more detailed analysis of myself. Along with that she also told me to look for a motivational quote or make one myself and repeat it to me 40 times each day for a week, and then use another quote. That way it's supposed to start breaking the negativity rooted in my mind.

    Once again she asked me if there's any girl around who could be interested in me. After all the fuss made by some people I do see her insistence about the subject kinda dodgy, but I just said no and forgot to say that unless the girl would tell it directly to me, I simply won't realize. And then it got ugly... for me. She gave me a final assignment. She asked me if then there's any girl at my university who had called my attention, I told her that there are a couple, so her answer was that during at least a week, every day I have to approach two girls and greet them with a hi, a good morning or whatever, in the same way you greet a neighbour passing by (just to clarify they'd be all the time the same two girls). I knew an assignment like this will eventually come, and it absolutely terrifies me. A very important part of the process we're making is that I need to stop living in function of others and stop worrying so much about what would they think of me, and do things for myself, because I want to, without limiting myself so much by making assumptions about others. This seems even more evident because that's exactly why this assignment scares me so much.

    I simply can't stop worrying about what would these girls think if a complete stranger (who they may or not have seen around, but I think that's irrelevant) approaches them and out of the blue greets them for no apparent reason. All I can think about is that they will find it very strange, assume an attitude of "wtf is up with this guy" and conclude that I'm trying to hit on them on a very clumsy and lame way. I'm aware of how I am jumping into conclusions here, but I'm incapable of imagining them reacting positively or indifferently to a complete stranger doing that (the psych warned me about the obvious possibility that neither of them could answer, but I do have to at least try). I get very nervous by just thinking about it, and the prospect of not trying and face the psychologist after that makes me quite nervous as well. As you can see, I can't think of the reasons of why I should do the assignment but why other would want me to do it or not. I have three weeks to do this, so I think I will check first the book thing to see if it gives me any insight to clam myself. Finally, she told me "and remember that we still have pending the second role playing, you're not gonna save yourself from it".

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    Chopin12's Avatar
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    dude your therapist sounds awesome, you should recommend her to me
    “A Caterpie may change into a Butterfree, but the heart that beats inside it remains the same.” — Brock

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    compulsive's Avatar
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    Quote Arthur Dent View Post


    Once again she asked me if there's any girl around who could be interested in me. After all the fuss made by some people I do see her insistence about the subject kinda dodgy, but I just said no and forgot to say that unless the girl would tell it directly to me, I simply won't realize. And then it got ugly... for me. She gave me a final assignment. She asked me if then there's any girl at my university who had called my attention, I told her that there are a couple, so her answer was that during at least a week, every day I have to approach two girls and greet them with a hi, a good morning or whatever, in the same way you greet a neighbour passing by (just to clarify they'd be all the time the same two girls). I knew an assignment like this will eventually come, and it absolutely terrifies me. A very important part of the process we're making is that I need to stop living in function of others and stop worrying so much about what would they think of me, and do things for myself, because I want to, without limiting myself so much by making assumptions about others. This seems even more evident because that's exactly why this assignment scares me so much.

    I simply can't stop worrying about what would these girls think if a complete stranger (who they may or not have seen around, but I think that's irrelevant) approaches them and out of the blue greets them for no apparent reason. All I can think about is that they will find it very strange, assume an attitude of "wtf is up with this guy" and conclude that I'm trying to hit on them on a very clumsy and lame way. I'm aware of how I am jumping into conclusions here, but I'm incapable of imagining them reacting positively or indifferently to a complete stranger doing that (the psych warned me about the obvious possibility that neither of them could answer, but I do have to at least try). I get very nervous by just thinking about it, and the prospect of not trying and face the psychologist after that makes me quite nervous as well. As you can see, I can't think of the reasons of why I should do the assignment but why other would want me to do it or not. I have three weeks to do this, so I think I will check first the book thing to see if it gives me any insight to clam myself. Finally, she told me "and remember that we still have pending the second role playing, you're not gonna save yourself from it".

    Hi just start off by saying hi /good morning as you are passing her. Nothing wrong with that.

    I would suggest, rather than specifically approaching these females that have attracted your attention, to instead if you can, say hi to a few other girls there too.

    Logically its say 2/2000 you are searching for , which have to be there the exact same time as you. I dont see it being practical to enforce the rule that it must be them. Sure if the opportunity comes up, but that's not a guarantee.

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    takethebiscuit's Avatar
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    Quote Arthur Dent View Post
    So this is what happened yesterday (I've been so damned busy this week):


    As I had predicted it, we didn't end up having time to do the role playing. She asked me how I've been and I answered that awful, since the most of the last weeks I've been pretty much only shifting between overwhelming stress about school or overwhelming episodes of depression. She pointed out that more than depression sounded like melancholic episodes product of my cognitive distortions. I agree with her but in any case she told me that whenever I'm feeling like that, instead of just sit here letting the misery eat me up, I must distract myself with whatever activity, preferably by going outside. Seems pretty damn obvious but when I'm in that state I barely can think.

    Exploring those cognitive distortions she asked me to tell her my qualities... and I got mute. I don't consider myself the worst thing around, but neither I see anything remarkable about me, just average; and I feel quite uncomfortable complimenting myself. Although when I achieve some things I'm capable of be proud of myself. It's hard for me to distinguish the line between modesty and self loathing. Trying to get over that I told her that I'm a good listener, responsible, and willing to help others. Then we discussed that if many different people keeps telling me that I am intelligent, that if I'm one of the very few who hasn't failed a course in my class and I'm doing great in what many people consider a very difficult career, I must accept that I'm an intelligent person, so I have to say "I am intelligent" instead of "people say I'm intelligent". She made the distinction that I'm intellectually intelligent, but I have a lot to do on my emotional intelligence (the way I see it I'm freaking retarded when it comes to that one). After telling her as well my defects (I emphasized my impatience), she also said that I need to improve my introspection, because if I only focus on the bad things, and of course that's wrong.

    Then I told her how uncomfortable I had felt in the previous exercise at the end when I was the most flirty, and how I had felt very lame, fake, and manipulative. She got my point and explained me that I missed the part when she said that at that point we were pretending that we already knew each other for a while, as she agrees with me that going and complimenting someone you just knew as if you knew them deeply is plain lame and won't work for a thing. She made clear once again at when I just get to know someone I only have to be friendly and look out for common interests and experiences. Here she gave me my first assignment, which is to to read a chapter of a book about introspection and based on that make a more detailed analysis of myself. Along with that she also told me to look for a motivational quote or make one myself and repeat it to me 40 times each day for a week, and then use another quote. That way it's supposed to start breaking the negativity rooted in my mind.

    Once again she asked me if there's any girl around who could be interested in me. After all the fuss made by some people I do see her insistence about the subject kinda dodgy, but I just said no and forgot to say that unless the girl would tell it directly to me, I simply won't realize. And then it got ugly... for me. She gave me a final assignment. She asked me if then there's any girl at my university who had called my attention, I told her that there are a couple, so her answer was that during at least a week, every day I have to approach two girls and greet them with a hi, a good morning or whatever, in the same way you greet a neighbour passing by (just to clarify they'd be all the time the same two girls). I knew an assignment like this will eventually come, and it absolutely terrifies me. A very important part of the process we're making is that I need to stop living in function of others and stop worrying so much about what would they think of me, and do things for myself, because I want to, without limiting myself so much by making assumptions about others. This seems even more evident because that's exactly why this assignment scares me so much.

    I simply can't stop worrying about what would these girls think if a complete stranger (who they may or not have seen around, but I think that's irrelevant) approaches them and out of the blue greets them for no apparent reason. All I can think about is that they will find it very strange, assume an attitude of "wtf is up with this guy" and conclude that I'm trying to hit on them on a very clumsy and lame way. I'm aware of how I am jumping into conclusions here, but I'm incapable of imagining them reacting positively or indifferently to a complete stranger doing that (the psych warned me about the obvious possibility that neither of them could answer, but I do have to at least try). I get very nervous by just thinking about it, and the prospect of not trying and face the psychologist after that makes me quite nervous as well. As you can see, I can't think of the reasons of why I should do the assignment but why other would want me to do it or not. I have three weeks to do this, so I think I will check first the book thing to see if it gives me any insight to clam myself. Finally, she told me "and remember that we still have pending the second role playing, you're not gonna save yourself from it".
    With regard to the assignment of talking to the girls: You're future pacing yourself by constantly thinking about what the girl's reactions will be. You're thinking about something that's not happened, imagining it happening and then feeling bad in the present moment. All as a result of your thoughts. It's not the actual assignment that frightens you. It's thinking of it how you've been thinking about it that frightens you.

    You can't imagine the girls reaction positively. I didn't imagine my first girlfriend liking me back but she did. Stuff outside of what we can imagine happens a lot in life. Your job is not to guess other people's reactions. That's a protection device created by your mind to stop you getting hurt. People who suffer from anxiety often become over concerned with the actions and reactions of other people. Mainly because they believe everyone else hates them, dislikes them, thinks badly of them etc. Your job is jut to go up to those girls and say "hello" or whatever. How they react is up to them.

    The important thing is not the reactions of the girls. The important thing is what you do.

    I don't want to interfere with work already being done between you and your therapist but if saying "hello" freaks you out then how about approaching using observations as shown here by my mate, Marcus:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aC4sXnox8Vo

    This is slightly more advanced than simply saying "hello" but it is another option you could use.

    Very best of luck with the therapy. You seem to be in good, well trained hands by all accounts.

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    Quote compulsive View Post
    Hi just start off by saying hi /good morning as you are passing her. Nothing wrong with that.

    I would suggest, rather than specifically approaching these females that have attracted your attention, to instead if you can, say hi to a few other girls there too.

    Logically its say 2/2000 you are searching for , which have to be there the exact same time as you. I dont see it being practical to enforce the rule that it must be them. Sure if the opportunity comes up, but that's not a guarantee.
    Yer, I have to agree with this, I've had people I don't know say "good morning" to me as I'm passing, particularly if I'm on my own. There's nothing wrong with that.

    Hope it goes well.
    I'M GONNA FIGHT 'EM ALL
    A SEVEN NATION ARMY COULDN'T HOLD ME BACK.......


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    Arthur Dent's Avatar Monkey man
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    I spent the next week after the session allegedly preparing mentally for the exercise, and then this ongoing week I was supposed to do it. But first I didn't saw the girls I've thought to approach, and then the few times I've seen them either them or me are surrounded by a somewhat large group of friends, and I simply won't do it if anyone I know it's around or they're with more then two people around them. But the big problem is that so far I haven't been able to stop myself from obsessing about what will they think, and if anything the thought that they will be weirded out keeps growing in my head. Along with this there's a big amount of guilty and frustration for not having this thoughts and having this fear. Right now I'm not so sure if I can do this... I'm trying to not beat myself up over this and wait for a proper chance to do it; and again jumping into conclusions, I see even more unlikely to keep greeting them after the initial approach, despite it should be the opposite case.


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    Quote Arthur Dent View Post


    I spent the next week after the session allegedly preparing mentally for the exercise, and then this ongoing week I was supposed to do it. But first I didn't saw the girls I've thought to approach, and then the few times I've seen them either them or me are surrounded by a somewhat large group of friends, and I simply won't do it if anyone I know it's around or they're with more then two people around them. But the big problem is that so far I haven't been able to stop myself from obsessing about what will they think, and if anything the thought that they will be weirded out keeps growing in my head. Along with this there's a big amount of guilty and frustration for not having this thoughts and having this fear. Right now I'm not so sure if I can do this... I'm trying to not beat myself up over this and wait for a proper chance to do it; and again jumping into conclusions, I see even more unlikely to keep greeting them after the initial approach, despite it should be the opposite case.

    Mention the guilt and frustration to your therapist if you have not already.

    Overly thinking about how other people will react to you causes "analysis paralysis" where you overwhelm yourself with information and too many thoughts to the point where you end up emotionally and physically exhausted and you decide not to do the exercise. Also, attempting to see yourself through the eyes of other people is quite unattractive behaviour. If you're worried about how the girls will react then surely it makes sense not to come across as unattractive. So it makes sense not to overly attempt to see yourself through the other people's eyes. If you want to over think, go into the future in your mind. Go to a time and place in your mind after you have spoken to the girls. Realise how good you feel looking back on having approached those girls. Realise from this position looking back how guilty and frustrated you would have felt had you not approached the girls.

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    Arthur Dent's Avatar Monkey man
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    Yesterday I saw the psychologist again. There wasn't this time either a flirting role playing so if that's what you were hoping to read you can carry on with your things. She started asking me how I've been, specially since the academic load was being really hard for me the last time we saw each other. I told her it's been normal and bearable again, and then I told her how that first week since the last appointment I felt quite well, controlling better my emotions and not having melancholic episodes, but then after the moving that weekend I got distracted by the stress of it and stopped doing the part of telling myself several times a day a motivational line; the two following weeks were quite stressful since I was pending if I saw the girls at college, I barely saw them alone, and failing to do the assignment made me feel really bad about myself. She asked me if I've kept getting these melancholic episodes, I told her they have been less frequent, and as she asked me, I explained her that these episodes are usually triggered when either I see a girl talking about someone she likes, or when a guy finds someone without making any apparent effort, while I have to do it the hard way by approaching complete strangers. From this point she wanted to make a review of what we've been doing. She made clear that her purpose is not to change me and make me an extroverted outgoing person, she said that I do not need to change who I am, but I need to realize that my fears and cognitive distortions are not a part of me, and that I can be freely myself if I make my part and let her help me. She said as well that I need to expand my perspective about myself and see more than the bad things, while at the same time, stop focusing so much on others and comparing myself to them, also remembering me that she just want me to face my fears by saying hi to the girls, not to win them and get a girlfriend right away.

    Among other things, when I mentioned once again how I have this two main thoughts that are screwing me for the post part: this two ideas, that I am aware are false, are that every single time I interact with a woman in any other context outside a formal one (like business, work, academic, bureaucracy...), she'll instantly assume that I'm hitting on her, and the second idea is that she won't like at all me hitting on her. As I said that I was clueless where did those thought exactly came from, she concluded (quiet well if you ask me) that when those classmates bothered me 18 years ago for having my female friend, there was where I got the idea that everyone will assume that just by talking to them I'm hitting on a girl; and my assumption that they won't like being approached by me comes from my low self esteem. She told me that to be honest, most women will entertain the thought that if a stranger approaches them it's quite likely that he did it with a romantic intention, and they may even overthink about it, but as I need to keep remembering, what others think should not be my main concern, and also most people do enjoy that sort of attention. Then she told me that with my height and overall looks I make an impact and cause a first good impression, but all that gets lost when I don't say a word and don't make eye contact. She also said many women will find the shyness and introversion attractive as long as I show confidence, not as a man that never fails or pretends to do so, but as a man that is not afraid of failing. She said that my intelligence, maturity and culture will be greatly appreciated, but I need to don't be afraid of be myself to show that, without showing off. She asked me about my academic performance, and told me that I can be as proud and confident of the rest of myself as I am as a student.

    Continuing with the self analysis part, I said that although I see the point in the classical "if you want, you can", I wonder if the people who say that have actually ever faced a paralysing fear, I mean, is not like I'm making excuses, I do want to change, and I'd like to believe that I'm committed to it, but that quote seems simplistic to me, and yet I told her I was afraid she would thought I'm not committed enough and therefore wouldn't want to help me anymore. But she calmed me saying that she completely understands that changing it's not easy, and even if I don't see it I'm making progress, because although I didn't faced my fears directly yet, I am aware of what I have to do and I've been understanding the process. Here I remembered and told her that I actually was quite decided to talk to both girls at some point but unfortunately they had left by the moment I was about to do it, and explained her that I don't feel I can do it if there's a guy or more than two girls around them. She understood and told me that it's ok, she won't ask me to approach them in the middle of a crowd, and I can do it just when I feel comfortable about, just that I need to not stop to think that much or I'll keep wasting opportunities, and that we'll work later on how to do it without me minding so much not only the person I'm talking to but also the surrounding ones. She insisted that she wants me to be free, not to be a different person, and then instructed me to read more about the book and made the respective self analysis. Here I asked her, doubtfully and sort of mumbling about the role playing part, since I feel like doing it and have some ideas about how to make it, despite how nervous it makes me, and she told me that we can and we will do it some other time, but that without analysing and challenging my thoughts the role playing won't really go anywhere. We'll see each other in a month, I guess during Towel Day.

  14. #14
    pam's Avatar needs more cowbell
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    Too bad you can't see her more often. I think you're on your way to getting somewhere. Anything good takes some time tho.

    What in the world is Towel Day?
    Drug-free and Happy

  15. #15
    Arthur Dent's Avatar Monkey man
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    Quote pam View Post
    Too bad you can't see her more often. I think you're on your way to getting somewhere. Anything good takes some time tho.
    Thank you

    What in the world is Towel Day?


    Well is not that well known really:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Towel_Day

    Although I had my cellphone set as 2012 so I thought the last Thursday of -may was the 25th.

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