Friday, 11 January 2013

Imagery Exercise In Psychology

Yesterday, the Psychologist came to see me for our usual appointment. I reluctantly went to the room and told him I didn't know what he wanted since I'd openly said I didn't want to see him but he told me there were no other Psychologists and that the Hospital would get no one else in for me. So I said 'ok, you said last week to talk about the trauma, let's go!' I think I genuinely thought that he would panic and backtrack, realise I wasn't ready or something. Anything really but do what he did... He asked me why I thought I detached so much and I said to protect myself. He asked why I felt like I had to. I said because of the 'trauma.' Then he had me do an imagery exercise where I begun by imagining a 'safe time.' I chose when I was down south (where I'm from) with my Dad and Step-Mum, on the beach at Poole and I had to remember the smells and sounds and sights. It was surprisingly easy and I found myself enjoying it. Then I had to pick a memory from during the 'trauma,' I chose when I was sitting in my bedroom and I first started hurting myself (they were just scratches though) and he said I had to think of how I felt and what I would've liked to have happened then. I said I would've wanted my Mum to have walked in and asked why I was doing it so I could've told her what was happening to me. He asked what she would've done; 'cried? Hugged me? And called the police probably!' I then had to think of a childhood memory in which I'd felt lonely and as though my needs weren't met. I immediately said there was none; I've always been adamant that my childhood was perfect and it was my teenage years that were the problem but I thought of a time when my Mum and her partner (at the time) were rowing on our doorstep and I was in the next room. I had to describe how I'd felt helpless because even though he'd never been violent I'd been worried my Mum would get hurt, emotionally (by them breaking up) and physically and I couldn't help her because I was only young. Finally, I had to go back to my safe time before opening my eyes. I couldn't believe I'd done an exercise like that! I've had three psychologists before the one in here (one other inpatient one and two outpatient ones) and have been asked before to do similar exercises but once I've heard the words 'imagine...' I've point blank refused to do them. The Psychologist said it'd felt like I'd been unable to connect very well with my feelings from the memories and I said I'd done it better than I thought I would, 'oh yeah, definately!'  I was so proud of myself and text my Mum to tell her I'd finally bit the bullet and had a 'proper' Psychology session.