To Therapy or Not to Therapy, That is the Question

I moved from NY to Atlanta two months ago. Today, I am gearing up to spend the next couple of days distributing my nutrition private practice business cards to additional private practices in the area which I recently discovered.

As I don’t believe in coincidences, last night I had a meaningful discussion with my husband and realized once and for all that I am missing out by not having yet found a new psychotherapist in Atlanta. Deciding to get back on the therapy horse is hard because:

  1. Therapy is hard
  2. Therapy is expensive
  3. We don’t yet have jobs, other than my budding private practice, so I feel very guilty about spending money on therapy (that guilt may in and of itself be something to address in therapy ;))
  4. As I said, I am promoting my private practice a lot now, and I feel vulnerable putting myself out into the world, while simultaneously airing out all my shit.

In addition to this internal struggle regarding “to therapy or not to therapy,” within that there is another challenge: What form of therapy is best for me?

For the predominance of the past decade I have engaged in talk therapy, but then a couple of years ago I felt a need to begin Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) for OCD-like symptoms I was having.

Here’s the thing: in therapy for OCD, one is supposed to face their fears head-on; to recognize that the worst of their fears CAN happen (i.e. radical acceptance). Getting reassurance for one’s OCD is a big no-no because it deflects from one facing one’s fears and dealing with them.

The thing is, I like reassurance! And not only that, OCD-related symptoms are not my only mental health concern, but anxiety as well. And I think for generalized anxiety, reassurance and feeling one is worthy and not alone in their pain is super important (at least, I hope it is, because that is what makes me most able to face it and cope.)

It seems in the past my dual focus on anxiety and OCD hampered me from dealing fully with my OCD. Like I said, I like reassurance, and I also like venting. I talk a lot (which I bet isn’t surprising, with my love of writing and fleshing out my thoughts on paper.)

Oh, and did I mention I have black-and-white thinking? That is what makes this internal conversation even more difficult. To me, it is either this or that. Different, seemingly contradictory concepts coexisting is not my cup of tea.

So, I am kind of freaking out.

But putting it all on paper here feels like the start to piecing all of this together.

Last night a friend of mine posted a poem on Facebook about how we try to tell our own stories, to be in complete control of our destinies, when really the story is “telling us.” Reading that gave me comfort. Yes, I feel like I am hitting a wall, but who knows, maybe my internal narrative isn’t the only way to perceive this situation…this poem was a breath of fresh air.

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