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TOPIC TITLE: therapy
Created On 1/23/06 12:59 AM
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theRabbi
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1/23/06 12:59 AM
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hi,
i'm new to this forum. i was diagnosed with bipolar about 7 years ago and i went through some very difficult times but b"h with many miracles along the way i was put on the proper medications some bad side affects went away and i am now married with a child and a lubavitcher shliach of the rebbe in a small suburb. one thing which i especially struggle over on a regular basis is illogical thinking in relationships. i can have a family member or a friend who has done a world for me and they can do something that makes me upset and i will get angry with them. it's very illogical being that i know what they've done for me but for some reason i don't have that clear thinking. at one time i had a therapy program - i forget the name - where they have you put your thoughts on paper the negative thought then the positve information that disproves it and the conclusion. i guess when you have bpd one of the things can be to be narrow-minded and not see the big picture. maybe someone knows about that type of therapy. i would be interested to hear people's ideas. thank you.
-tr
 
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Torsalicious613
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what you say is very very very interesting to me, rabbi. not yet have we come across the point of view that bpd is more a mindset than a health issue. i mean it is a health issue, but it is also important to remember the cognitive or behavioral side, which i think you seem to be do a very good job of. the therapy you speak of seems very useful too.

atara


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what the hecka is a signiature?
 
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ImaBP
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1/23/06 1:41 PM
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Welcome Rabbi,
Ima here. It's good that you brought it up. Many of forget about the therapy side of BPD, we just think of the right "meds" however there
cognitive therapy, and recently a rebetzin mentioned "behavior therapy".
I know it takes alot of courage to admit we have Bipolar Disorder but more so taking the steps to get help and going through the different
steps of healing.
I am contemplating "behavior therapy and cognitive therapy has helped many.
B''hatzlacha,
Ima
 
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theRabbi
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1/23/06 3:28 PM
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i remember the name of the therapy, it is called cbt- cognitive behaviororal therapy.
-tr


Edited: 1/23/06 at 3:28 PM by theRabbi
 
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theRabbi
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also while i'm writing about therapy i would like to add another few thoughts.

i would catogorize my therapy into different sections.

first, explaining what the illness is, what behavioral psychological and emotional problems i have that express it i.e. my symptoms. why i need medicine and therapy and how they can help me.

second, why changing my lifestyle with sleep and schedule, diet and excesize are important (amongest other activities) and assistance implementing them.

third, how to think logically and assistance in that. marriage actually helps tremenduosly in that aspect. you have someone without that problem to talk to on a regular basis. i'm very thankfull for that. a big blessing. (i'm consediring
working on cbt again, i guess because not everything needs to be said etc.)

i guess that's how I would catarogize the therapy aspect. does anyone have any other thougts? -thanks atara and ima for your thoughts.

-tr
 
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Torsalicious613
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1/23/06 10:09 PM
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everything in baby steps. and you know what's funny? when someone does something right, the answer seems obvious. why when we only do something wrong, is it noticed (i'm not advocating doing something wrong, just very very curious.) it's kind of funny it works out that way. whatever his name is graham bell? phones? OBVIOUS! the wright brothers? airplanes? OBVIOUS! unfortunately things are only obvious in hindsight. hindsight is 20/20. maybe this is something to bring up in cognitive therapy, don't you think, ima? rabbi?

atara


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what the hecka is a signiature?
 
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ImaBP
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1/24/06 2:23 PM
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Rabbi and Atara: I just know that working on the cbt and other healing processes can further help us in our disorder. Exercise is so very important. MY
psychiatrist mentioned swimming or jogging for 20 minutes. We have alot of adrenalin that needs to be released and it doesn't happen while sitting at
the computer. I try to get in a walk, but that's not enough. YOu really have to work up a sweat. I'm not great on working up a sweat and definitely not
on my own.
Hope this helps.
Ima
 
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Torsalicious613
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i've got a trainer and have had one at least, usually 3 at a time (duh, not all at once, but they switched off) with a group called bodytime. great people. i've lost and gained a lot of weight with them (i think i did the gaining on my own, lol). but i did lose 50 lbs. in one year at one point with them. they're very flexible (in more waya than one) and they are very accommidating. trainers always help, but i have to learn to go on the treadmill and elliptical o my own. otherwise, i will stagnate. college isn't great for your diet, and aside from the irregular times i actually get to work out with my trainers, which doesn't actually get to happen so much anymore because of my busy hours at school, i don't get a lot of excersice outside of training. but i am getting closer to doing excersice on my own. who knows? i may even join weight watchers! one of my friends joined after she had a baby and she lost all her baby fat! (she kind of looks like britney spears at this point, although not exactly!) and my second cousin once removed swears by them. who knew? i'll try it.
what can happen? what can i lose? weight? puleease honey, that's kind of what i'm going for. i could lose all that in great numbers and then some! believe me there's plenty to go around! wouldn't it be great if we could donate fat? i would do it!..gladly! and maybe gety a tummy tuck at the same time! there's scars though..and i don't know about gastric bypass. you throw up a lot because you can't handle your food and you eat too much and your skin sags because you lose soo much weight in so little time and your body doesn't have time to catch up. then you need a tummy tuck and liposuction anyway! i'll stick to old fashioned working out, thank your very much. it worked once, it can work again. sure it's harder, but there's less pain, it's looks more natural, and it works better! bye! have to catch a train!

atara


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what the hecka is a signiature?
 
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theRabbi
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ima,
just something i noticed about breaking into a sweat. i came back from the grocery store carrying bags and i noticed that the weight of the grociries put my heart rate up and i broke into a sweat much quicker.
-tr
 
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theRabbi
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another aspect on therapy i found was maybe the most important of all to me. i guess it encompasses all my categories of therapy. part of section three (above post)- thinking logical, part of section two- living a good lifestyle and part of section one- understanding the illness.

i'm reffering to learning torah, especially mussar and chassidus.

obviously it helps us think logically (my wife is actually in the middle of reading a story about abbaye. she pointed out that it says there that abbaye was well versed in the psychology of people; i guess from his torah knowledge. of course the rambam.), keeps our mind ocuppied with kedusha and is good mental excerzise. ofcourse with shulchan aruch and the hadracha of mussar and chassidus our lifestyle changes to a healthy one. even understanding the illness can be found in torah. being a shomer torah umitzvos this is obviously the central point that encompasses everything else.

chabad chassidus founded by the baal hatanya or known as the alter rebbe explaines how the mitzvah of knowing hashem is tangibale for the human mind. it takes the abstract teachings of kabbala about hashem and the creation and explaines them in a way that a person can understand. based on the possuk that hashem created a person in hashem's image and that "from my flesh i can understand hashem" it uses mesholim from a persons nature and based on that understand how it is bruchniyus. so chassidus explaines about the nature of the mind and the spirituall level of wisdom from which the persons mind originates and helps put alot of puzzle pieces together. i know a lot about bipolar from secular sources and it helps me understand what is actually the meaning of the illness according to the torah's teachings. iy"h when i have a few minutes i'll sit down and write it out and you can tell me what your impression's are. i don't know if this is the place for it but if no one minds i'll go ahead.
-tr
 
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Torsalicious613
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rabbi, chassidus seems very nteresting. could you tell me about it?

atara


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what the hecka is a signiature?
 
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shosh
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1/25/06 11:37 AM
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Atara,

It does not sound like you are that heavy. I came from a family of compulsive eaters. One of my cousins died from morbid obesity. My Father had a stapling done 15 years ago and he stretched his pouch back out and was miserable. My sister was wearing a size 24 and now she is down to an 18 and plans to lose 40 more pounds. I like to take credit for it because I finally convinced her that she was a compulive eater (addidction) she thought about food even when she was eating it and felt like she would die if she would diet. Scary! So I talked her into seeing a therapist who put her on antidepressants and her compusion to eat abated. It even cured her of her compulsive shopping. NOw she does water aerobics and does not eat as much even though she does not eat as healthy as she should but I am not going to rock the boat. She is stubborn and does not want to give up her favorite recipes.
I know you are young and self image is very important but I am sure things will even out for you. If I can help let me know.

I care about you.

Shosh
 
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Torsalicious613
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thank you, shosh. i actually have an uncle-- or had an uncle-- heshy. he was like 500 lbs. and his legs were purple, and everytime i rememberseeing him he was either sitting or walking with a cane/walker. he i think will be in some kind of guinness world record kind of book because he has survived (Or did survive) about 74 years-- the longest any man i think has ever lived in recorded history-- without developing any outstanding health problems such as diabetes, hypertension, heart disease or stroke. wow, right? but it woud be better if he were just normal sized, or not overweight. if he were, he might still be alive today. my grandmother, his sister, died before i was born, of cervical cancer. shehad borderline diabetes, and was a little overweight, like me, but not obese (some would debate what constitutes "obese")-- she was "big boned" as my other grandmother says. (my dad's mom was the one who died and my mom's mom's still alive and truckin, ba''h) my grandmother who died's brother, moshie, a rabbi himself said she was a great sister and a great dancer. i seemed to have inherited that from her. you know., i don't mean to toot my own horn, but i am i think almost directly related to king dovid (we have charts, maybe that explains the tempermentality that i have that some red heads posess.) we are also related to chernobler rebbe, and rabbi twersky (for all who are wondering all the twerskys in the world are related..) this is all through my dad's mom's side by the way-- maybe my dad's dad's side a little bit but i'm not sure. since i'm polish, austrian, hungarian, russian, ukranian and itallian, with the itallian part i think it is documented that i am related to the rambam-- not the ramban, but the rambam, who lived in pattawa italy. so what's my point? that as much pain and sorrow and misery i have in my life, i also have some yichus too. just thought i'd let you guys in on that. sometimes things seem so bad, but there are other things that are so good. is anyone here related to anyone famous jewishwise?..anyone perhaps with the last name twersky or brandise or another name related to me? and no, everyone always asks me this but i'm NOT related to howard stern. yes, my last name IS stern. don't tell anyone though, okay? shh. hey, it's not like you don't know yet who i am already. so you know my last name? so what. it doesn't really matter. i could care less. i figure telling people my last name is not as bad as killing myself, so does it really make a difference? at least if i chv''s die someday (not by me) you'll know who i was. okay okay, we all die eventually. but you know what i mean. hopefully mashiach will come before/by then..

atara


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what the hecka is a signiature?
 
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Torsalicious613
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and p.s. shosh, thank you for sayinmg you care about me. that means a lot to me

atara (a.s. a.k.a. torsalicious613)


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ernie55B
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Hello Rabbi,

Welcome to the site. I think it is very commendable that you acknowledge your BPD and share your thoughts about it.
I am just puzzled by a few things. You say you struggle with anger towards people you are close with. I know that the sifrei mussar you refer to have plenty to say about anger in general.
Why is it such a struggle when the answers are clearly given?

Secondly, how can you function as a Rabbi when your thinking is not clear and is illogical?
I believe clear and logical thinking are two of the most important traits a Rabbi must have in order to properly guide other people.

Please do not think I am being disrespectful or sarcastic. That is not my intent here.

Wishing you much hatzlacha,
Ernie
 
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theRabbi
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Ernie,

Thank you for the compliment and for writing your thoughts.

As for my struggles, it's not as bad as it sounds. I only feel like my thinking is illogical in regards to myself. Like it says in Sifrei Mussar and Chassidus, that "Adam karov etzel atzmo," a person is biased about themselves. So for this reason you need to learn what it says in the Seforim and not just that, but to have an objective opinion from someone who has a clearer understanding than yourself that can guide you and point out your misunderstandings and show you the proper way.

Actually, the reason why I started this thread, was because of what I saw at the end of a different thread, where you wrote the reason for therapy. And this made me think about illogical emotions that I have. These are emotional feelings, not thoughts. In other words, you can know in the back of your mind the way it really is, but the animalistic emotions distort your thinking, so you could for example be angry at someone you love. And that's what I'm looking to improve on. I actually spoke to my teacher right after I started the thread, and he explained to me the approach that Chassidus gives on this problem. The source of the problem actually is a person's self ego, or in Hebrew yeshus, but in this particular case, it is ego without any rationale. And the way to deal with it is actually through like the cognitive therapy, to explain yourself how there's no basis for this egoistic feeling and thereby you can uproot it.

It's true that the answers are in Sifrei Mussar and Chassidus but sometimes you can find it by first realizing the problem from modern psychology and the answers that they give, and then you search for it and find it in Torah, as was in that case (so you know what is not acceptable according to Torah). Just to point out at first this approach was actually questionable to me based on what it says in the seforim that you should try to not allow a negative thought to be dwelled upon in your mind, and in this therapy it tells you how to deal with it and uproot it. But I was taught, as I wrote above, that there is a source for negating these thoughts, because it's an emotion that doesn't merely have single thoughts that enter the mind and can just be pushed out. So I actually did have to clear that this approach is in accordance with the teachings of Torah.

In any case, I believe that the best Rabbi is somebody who has challenges himself and overcomes them and can thereby relate to others who have challenges and help them overcome them as well. Of course it doesn't incapacitate the abilities to be a Rabbi, it's just that there is a fault that needs to be dealt with.

Boruch Hashem in regards to Torah and understanding other people, I believe Hashem blessed me with clear thinking. It's just about my own bias and natural emotions (that might be associated with my illness) that I have challenges to overcome.

In general I don't like to defend myself, but I thought it would be a positive thing to write out the issue so that people can learn Torah's approach to this problem and also realize that just as myself, although you might have your own issues that you need to deal with, it does not prevent you from the fact that "if you know an alef" you can and should teach it to somebody else. And when you have "your beis," you can teach that too. And so on.

In addition to the fact that by teaching others Hashem enlightens you as well and helps you reach the goals that you are trying to attain.

Kol tuv,
-TR
 
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ernie55B
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1/25/06 10:07 PM
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Thank you Rabbi, I understand and appreciate your explanation.
Ernie
 
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theRabbi
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Quote

Originally posted by: Torsalicious613
rabbi, chassidus seems very nteresting. could you tell me about it?

atara


Atara,

I started a new thread which expresses my understanding of the perspective of Chassidus on bipolar disorder.

I hope you enjoy it.
-TR
 
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Dr. Lynn, Psy.D.
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Welcome rabbi, and thank you for your insights. I think your "struggle" is very common, and often we do not see ourselves clearly, which is why therapy is often helpful. By looking at ourselves through different perspectives, we learn about ourselves and challenge the conceptions we hold.
a lynn
 
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ImaBP
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Rabbi,
Very well put. I have the same illogical thinking pattern and I feel very bad about it and I get inner anger.
As Atara put, would you teach us the perspective of Chassidus on Bipolar disorder?
Thank you for being with us, and we value your insights highly!!!
Ima
 
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Torsalicious613
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hi, i know of a chasidic rabbi of about my age, a teeny bit older, who is married with two kids. he started something called the friendship circle. it basically teaches kids with developmental disorders and issues such as autism (i think) and retardation associated with down's and william's and such. i have been encouraged to volunteer and help, but i am scared because i'm afraid i might "mess up", and i don't want to hurt these kids more than they've already been hurt. i know you can learn things by helping and teaching other people, but i don't want to get more good stuff out of it than they are. i mean, i would be there to help them, not have it the other way around where they're helping me. i've always had an interest in the medical field and in psychology (my grandmother says i'd make a good therapist or social worker). But I am too insecure and i might mess up, like i said and i don't want to hurt them anymore than they've already been hurt. i don't want to make it worse than better, where the people would have been better off without the help than with the help to start with. what do you guys think? i will tell this rabbi about this site, i'm sure he will be interested to see what we all have had to say. he himself deals with developmentally challenged children, and is very patient and understanding, so i'm sure he'd get something out of this site. k, well, gtg. feel good everyone

atara


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gad
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Why don't you go one time and see what it's like. You would probably receive guidance from the organizers (maybe ask to go together with another volunteer who can teach you the ropes).

To paraphrase a commercial: "Try it, you might like it."
 
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Torsalicious613
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actually he is lubavitch (oops, is there a difference?) and it turns out he emailed me and said he's been visiting frumsupport regularly(i think) and he's even read my posts and likes them! talk about wierd!

atara


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Torsalicious613
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p.s. he did it on his own-- that's the wierd part

atara


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gad
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You might also ask him if he has a video which shows how the volunteers interact with the children. This can give you a good idea of what it's like.
Hatzlocho
 
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Torsalicious613
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hmm, okay, good idea. i'll ask him.

atara


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theRabbi
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I found a very interesting website that talks about the Chassidic approach to therapy, and the fact that therapy is not good enough without Yiddishkeit: http://www.inner.org/mental/mental01.htm It's a lot of pages but it's worth reading even if you only get through part of it.
 
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eagle wings
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Actually, if you treat a developementally child with concern and like a HUMAN (ie, setting firm guidlines like you would for any child) it would be hard to do harm. I have an 11 year old girl with retardation and the only people who hurt her are the ones who let her get away with murder (misbehavior).
Prehaps if you work with these kids, and learn to see the worth and personality that they have (even if you think they do have worth and personality, as you meet them you will realize it is way above what you imagined...), despite the fact that they are not perfect.... then maybe you will be able to accept your own perceptions of your imperfections and troubles better.


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"Let GO and Let G_D"
 
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Torsalicious613
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that's the problem. i don't know if i would be firm enough. i've always had trouble with that, and when i am firm, i feel bad. not always. but usually. i'm good at setting limits with my dog-- but with people-- that's a different issue. another reason why i think i would be bad with my own kids. i mean i've babysat and all, some were easier, some were harder. but i just have a problem with discipline altogether. i just don't like it and see how it it nessecary, no matter how stupid that sounds (i know it sounds stupid.) i think there are whaaay too many restrictions in society today, and i just don't see how, even though i'm "good with children" when i'm not setting limits, "not setting limits" would help them, even if i am against it so to speak. i have to learn humility. i think the ability to show discipline shows humility. it may sound backwards, but i think it's true. only people who are completely baal guivadick like me think they are above setting discipline with people younger than them. children are not on the same level as adults, no matter how much i want to believe that's not true. some people just know more than other people. stam. and some don't. i think once i realize this i can move on. it's hard going through life with no rules or discipline. it seems like anything's possible and anything goes, and you feel quite worthless and lonely afterwards thinking this way. could this be the precursor to depression?

atara


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Torsalicious613
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p.s. i didn't mention how setting limits makes me feel guilty.

atara


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