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Originally Posted By: disgustedandsad
Thanks for the all the information to think about!

My worry about IC not being a friend of the marriage was because the IC stated that she was interested in getting him healthy, and THEN worrying about the M. That bothered me.


If you follow the link I provided earlier, you'll see that Dr H said the same thing about "The Depressed Spouse". You can also read in the newsletters here that Dr. H says the same thing about spouses who are addicted to drugs / alcohol.

Quote:
My job as a marriage counselor begins after successful treatment...


As you can see, treating a psychological problem and then the marriage doesn't mean a therapist is not a friend of the marriage.

Quote:
The IC is tough, and she doesn't let him make excuses or use the past as an excuse. The IC wants him to make changes in how he behaves, and that part I like.

My H has been clinically depressed and is finally on good meds. He is learning to be empathetic, because that is something he didn't learn growing up. His IC is also focused on boundaries, because his are terrible of course.

I am just frustrated that we can't work on M as thoroughly and quickly as others can.


Now we have the real issue out in the open. In that case, my input is: Have patience.

You should be seeing clear improvements in your H after a few sessions, especially since he's taking his meds and they seem to be "good" as you put it. If not, time to pick another IC and take another look @ his meds. In the meantime, get all schooled up on MB. Read the books, etc. Set a date for hime and you to evaluate his progress together (say a month?)...This way you will not feel like you're just sitting idle. If his progress is good and contiues on an upward trend, you can start MB together while he continues IC smile

What do you think about those suggestions?

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Originally Posted By: ChrisInNOVA


If you follow the link I provided earlier, you'll see that Dr H said the same thing about "The Depressed Spouse". You can also read in the newsletters here that Dr. H says the same thing about spouses who are addicted to drugs / alcohol.


Chris, if she follows that link, NOWHERE does Dr Harley tell people with depression or addictions to go to an IC and waste time talking about their childhoods. Please read what he is actually saying. He CLEARLY advocates the OPPOSITE as posted above. Her H is not "addicted" and even if he were, the solution is NOT to go to a counselor dredging up childhood traumas. That is a DISTRACTION and is clearly NOT recommended.



"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted By: Retread


But when there is not a serious personality disorder, drug addiction, alcohol problems, chronic depression, IC is not necessary as a prerequisite to start working on your marriage. Depending upon the therapy and therapist, it may be at odds with the marriage counseling or individual efforts.


Agree. And even with addiction problems, counseling is a complete waste of time. Frankly, I don't know of any conditions that would be remedied by exploring one's childhood. As one who suffered from depression, addiction AND a traumatic childhood and traumatic adulthood, yakking about the past was NEVER the solution.

While Dr Harley does recommmend anti-depressants for depression, he does not tell people to go to counselors and yap about their childhood.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Taking a somewhat opposite tack here, I will say from the research I've done and the counseling I've had, people who are afflicted with Cluster B personality disorders (Narcissistic, Borderline, Histrionic and Antisocial/Sociopath) are very difficult to treat.

In the words of Colleen E. Warner, Psy.D., even therapists are loathe to treat them due to the high emotional cost to the therapist:

Quote:
"I was advised by the malpractive folks to refer all borderlines to my worst enemies."

~~ Borderline Personality Disorder, Struggling, Understanding, Succeeding, page 2

I think it may be very important to understand if one is dealing with a disordered person, because dealing with them is bout as successful as dealing with an active alcoholic or addict, as ML states.

Cluster B personality disorders are learned behaviors, caused by traumatic and dysfunctional experiences during childhood. They are not based on genetics or chemical imbalances.


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Originally Posted By: markos
[One of them came very, very close to suggesting that I needed to end the marriage, and then hid in a cloud of psychobabble and feigned innocence saying she hadn't suggested anything and revealing that she really didn't know what "decision" she was talking about when she told me I had to make a decision. We quit seeing her very shortly thereafter.


markos, and this seems to be the way of psychobabble artists, they never want to be held accountable so they speak in vague, incoherent ambiguities. Dr Harley touches on this somewhat in his book Effective Marriage Counseling. You know how traditional psychotherapists don't really give guidance or opinions, but ask the client to discuss his feelings? This is based on the belief that the true answer to the problem is "within" and if the client just yaps enough he will figure it out on his own. What amazes me most about this process is that it doesn't seem to occur to the founder of this silly philosophy that the clients best thinking got him in this mess in the first place. His thinking is the PROBLEM, so how can it be the solution? crazy

But the cool thing is that the "counselor" can NEVER be held accountable for the FAILURE since the "plan" comes from "within" the client by yapping endlessly. The counselor can therefore blame any failures on the CLIENT. Nice, huh?

Dr Harley, on the other hand, not only proposes a PLAN, but he tracks his progress and HOLDS HIMSELF ACCOUNTABLE FOR FAILURES IF HIS PLAN FAILS. For a long time he wouldn't even CHARGE clients until he came up with a winning plan.

That is how MB and other behavioral programs differ. They are not based on this kind of nonsense. Rather they hold that the person who screwed things up should shut up and listen and learn NEW BEHAVIORS from someone who knows how to solve the problem.

As a person with a very screwed up past: alcoholic, abuse victim, etc, etc, etc, I only knew how to screw things up. I was very good at that. I needed someone to teach me how to live the RIGHT WAY. And that solution was not to be found in my "childhood." I have made dramatic changes in my life since I changed my behavior and those changes did not come from flapping my lips, but from shutting up and listening. Tomorrow will be 25 years since my LAST DRINK, btw.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Chris makes some very important points.

AFAIK one cannot legally get ADs without a medical doctor's prescription. That often means seeing a *psychiatrist* (not a psychologist, who cannot write prescriptions). Sure, a person can often go to their GP and talk them into writing a script for the latest feel-good drug they saw advertised on TV, but is that recommended? IMO, no.

Then, the psychiatrist will hopefully monitor the patient or have them continue to see a psychologist or other IC, because it is highly unethical to hand out ADs like candy and not follow up. There are many different kinds of ADs and it is NOT a one-size-fits-all. There are many side effects, some dangerous, including an increased risk of SUICIDE when starting new ADs.

There are more reasons to see an IC than just to "yap about their childhood."

I *strongly* urge ppl seeing an IC and starting new ADs to NOT suddenly stop seeing their IC.


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Originally Posted By: Fred_in_VA

I think it may be very important to understand if one is dealing with a disordered person, because dealing with them is bout as successful as dealing with an active alcoholic or addict, as ML states.



Interesting, Fred! And as a longtime member of AA, how many times have you seen "counselors" come to AA for their own addiction problems?


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted By: jayne241
Then, the psychiatrist will hopefully monitor the patient or have them continue to see a psychologist or other IC, because it is highly unethical to hand out ADs like candy and not follow up. There are many different kinds of ADs and it is NOT a one-size-fits-all. There are many side effects, some dangerous, including an increased risk of SUICIDE when starting new ADs.


I agree that one should see a psychiatrist to get on AD's if they are depressed; that is exactly what Dr Harley recommends. And this guy has done this. However, that misses the point. He is seeing an IC to yap about his childhood. THAT is the issue. That is a waste of time, JUST AS DR HARLEY STATES.

disgustedandsad, stick to what Dr Harley says, and don't believe for a minute that your husband has to resolve issues of the past in order to resolve his marriage problems. HE DOES NOT. It is a good way to keep your H coming back for years, accomplishing nothing. As you can see, nothing has changed while your marriage crumbles more and more every day.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted By: jayne241


I *strongly* urge ppl seeing an IC and starting new ADs to NOT suddenly stop seeing their IC.


Here is what Dr Harley says and he is a pretty smart fella:

Originally Posted By: Dr Harley
"An analysis of the betrayed spouse's childhood or emotional state of mind in an effort to discover why he or she would have an affair is distracting and unnecessary. It takes precious time away from finding the real solutions. I know why people have affairs: We are all wired for it. Given certain conditions, we would all do it. Given other conditions, however, none of us would do it. So the goal of the first step is to discover the conditions that made the affair possible and eliminate them."


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted By: MelodyLane

Chris, her husband is none of the above.


Mel,

She said he is Depressed & on meds.

Quote:
NOWHERE does Dr Harley tell people to go to a counselor to resolve their childhood problems.


My comments did not address resolving childhood problems. Here's exactly what I said:

Originally Posted By: ChrisInNOVA

You can't have a healthy marriage with an individual who is psychologically unhealthy.
For example, take a person who is addicted to drugs or alcohol, clinically depressed, schizophrenic, or bipolar and try to have a GOOD MARRIAGE with them. What do you think you'll experience?



Quote:
And secondly, people who are addicted to drugs or alcohol DO NOT benefit from IC; it is a WASTE OF TIME.


Agreed. Addicts need to be treated cia AA / Alanon as you pointed out - not IC.

My main point was that we can't have a healthy marriage when our spouse is addicted to alcohol / drugs or if they are psychologically unhealthy.

Dr H himself said that in the newsletters.

This one pertains to Drug / Alcohol Addiction:
Quote:
One of the first things I do when couples see me for counseling is to evaluate them for drug and alcohol addiction. If I feel that either is addicted at the time, I refer the addicted spouse to a treatment program. The Love Buster, drug or alcohol addiction, will prevent them from resolving their marital conflicts because it controls them. It must be eliminated before marital therapy has any hope of being successful.


This one pertains to Depression:
Quote:
Whenever a spouse I counsel for marital problems suffers from severe depression, my first item of business is to treat the depression, not the marital problems. The treatment, however, is much simpler than most people think. Anti-depressant medication is the ticket. It greatly relieves, if not eliminates entirely, a depressive state so that the spouse I counsel can succeed in meeting the other spouse's emotional needs. As his depression is lifted, he seizes opportunities both in his marriage and at his job, that makes him more successful. In the end, his self-esteem is restored because he finds himself successful in achieving his life's ambitions. I do not believe that counseling to improve self-esteem, apart from showing people how to be successful, ever really improves self-esteem.

The approach that I use to save marriages looks at the present and future for solutions. I encourage you not to worry about your husband's past, his self-esteem or whether or not he loves himself. After he is treated medically for depression, focus your attention on the way you treat each other in the here and now.


In this second one Dr H seems to be saying meds is the way; however, many people do use therapy and meds conjointly to treat certain psychological probs. Also, most Psych MD's will not prescribe meds without sessions to assess / evaluate the patient.

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Chris, again, NOWHERE does he tell anyone to go to an IC and yap about their childhoods. He advises AGAINST THAT. He tells depressed people to get on anti-depressants, THAT IS ALL. The problem here is this woman's H is going to counseling to "resolve childhood trauma" before he will work on the marriage. That is a waste of time.

One does not need to go to a counselor to resolve childhood issues in order to fix their marriage. That is what this man is doing. AT THE EXPENSE OF HIS MARRIAGE. Like Dr Harley has said, when they bring up your childhood, you know you will there for YEARS without ever finding a solution.. It is just a good way to keep clients coming back for years.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Originally Posted By: disgustedandsad
He is doing CBT with the IC. They are focused on overcoming the trauma. But to me, after 6 months, I question whether or not he is making progress or having a plan to follow.

She says he is making progress and he feels he is, too.


This seems odd to me.

CBT sessions should be focused on Stimulus --> Thought --> Emotion.. not on "overcoming the trauma." Also, CBT is a short process. He's been CBTing for SIX months?

DAS, what's going on here?

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Originally Posted By: MelodyLane
Chris, again, NOWHERE does he tell anyone to go to an IC and yap about their childhoods. He advises AGAINST THAT. He tells depressed people to get on anti-depressants, THAT IS ALL.

One does not need to go to a counselor to resolve childhood issues in order to fix their marriage. That is what this man is doing. AT THE EXPENSE OF HIS MARRIAGE.


Mel,

Can you show me where I am saying that going to an IC to talk about childhood issues is useful?

Thanks.

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Originally Posted By: ChrisInNOVA
Originally Posted By: MelodyLane

Chris, her husband is none of the above.


Well, I am not a medical doctor and even if I were, I wouldn't try to diagnose someone I had never met, over an anonymous forum. I still maintain that if a psychiatrist thinks it is worth prescribing ADs and continuing to monitor the patient, then ITA with the psychiatrist's judgment. (As if he/she needs my blessing!)

Quote:
Mel,

She said he is Depressed & on meds.


Yep, that's enough for me to think it is unethical to encourage that person to drop their sessions with the best person to monitor their treatment.

But YMMV. I am not a medical doctor. You can follow your medical doctor's advice... or someone else's.


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I have bipolar disorder, and IC is part of the deal from time to time. Right before my hospitalization, MB people here encouraged IC. However, if I waited until I was no longer bipolar to address my M, well......

You see, I will always be vulnerable to depression. I may always be vulnerable to mania. If I wait until I feel good or completely stable to take care of my M, I might as well just pack my bags. The DAY I got home from the hospital, H and I talked about the M. Was I still fragile? Yes. Was I still depressed? Yes. But life isn't a to do list. I don't become "perfect" and put all other relationships on hold. I have to do some things simultaneously.

Where is the line between getting the help I need first and using it as a reason to avoid the hard stuff in my M? I don't know. But I don't want to cross it, and if that means I have to suck it up and be a wife even when I am struggling, then that's what it means.

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Originally Posted By: ChrisInNOVA

Mel,

Can you show me where I am saying that going to an IC to talk about childhood issues is useful?

Thanks.



Chris, do you realize that is what this thread is about? "Re: childhood trauma, IC and MB"
That is what this man is doing.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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And I am not just speaking up on behalf of the OP. Also expressing caution toward whomever else may be reading this, starting new meds... *please* follow your doctor's advice.


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Originally Posted By: jayne241


Well, I am not a medical doctor and even if I were, I wouldn't try to diagnose someone I had never met, over an anonymous forum. I still maintain that if a psychiatrist thinks it is worth prescribing ADs and continuing to monitor the patient, then ITA with the psychiatrist's judgment. (As if he/she needs my blessing!)


Yet you contradict DR HARLEY's credentialed, qualified advice, Jayne.


"It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena.." Theodore Roosevelt

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Quote:
Chris, do you realize that is what this thread is about? "Re: childhood trauma, IC and MB"
That is what this man is doing.


Mel,

I sure do. smile

Can you show me where I am saying that going to an IC to talk about childhood issues is useful?

Thanks.

Last edited by ChrisInNOVA; 04/26/10 12:35 PM.
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Originally Posted By: jayne241
And I am not just speaking up on behalf of the OP. Also expressing caution toward whomever else may be reading this, starting new meds... *please* follow your doctor's advice.


I agree 100%

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