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TOPIC TITLE: my T is confusing me
Created On 7/4/07 12:53 AM
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shtarkebachur
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7/4/07 12:53 AM
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i first went to therapy to stop feeling depressed, to stop thinking i'm bad, to stop being so sensitive, and to stop being angry at anyone who didn't treat me the way i wanted them to. i knew that this is not letting me build healthy relationships with friends, and even more than that, i was petrified that i'll marry someone like my mother, and i'll have the same marriage as my parents, chas veshalom.
iv'e been in therapy for about a half year, my therapist kept on telling me to trust him enough to tell him everything that i'm thinking, which i took as criticism and i told him it hurts me, because he makes it sound like someething's wrong with me that i can't trust him.
also, when we beigin a session he asks me what i wanna talk about, so i say my parents, so he says mmhmm, and waits for me to talk. why can't he ask questions, what's he waiting for me to say? so i begin to tell him what my parents did to me that hurt me and i tell him how they treat each other, and in a few minutes he turns the topic back to me, and tells me what i'm doing and thinking wrong. so i feel he doesn't care about me.
he asked me what he's doing to make me not trust him, and i said it's the fact that he keeps pointing out what i'm doing wrong, to which he replied that this is how therapy works,and he doesn't think there's something wrong with me, he thinks i'm smart, talented, good, kind, good-looking...he just points out what i'm doing wrong so i can change it.
so from then on, when i felt hurt by his pointing out, either i kept quiet, since i knew he isn't gonna change anyway, or i acted passive-aggressive to show him i'm angry. then he'd point out that i'm being passive-aggressive,which insulted me more so i told him he keeps criticizing me. so he said he needs to do this. i wasn't very expressive after that, as you understand, and i did not feel any major changes taking place in me.
last week, i expressed alot of my anger that he's not helping me. he criticized me for expecting too much, to which i didn't answer but i thought to myself that at least he shouldv'e gotten me to trust him, which i still don't, after 30 sessions. but he stuck to his theory that it's my responsibility to tell him everything and it's my responsibility to trust him, and he asked why don't i ever tell him what i wanna talk about. i told him i keep telling him i want to discuss my parents, so he responds that i should tell him more, that i keep getting quiet. so i told him, i do tell him things, and he keeps criticizing me, so i don't think he cares about me. he says it's not true that he doesn't care about me. now i feel really stupid. how come i can't see that he cares? i just showed him i'm angry, since i couldn't say why i don't trust him. the session ended with him asking me if i want to try once more, and we'll discuss my parents. i just nodded and left, still mad that he doesn't want to understand that he doesn't help me by criticizing me, it just hurts me and makes me feel he doesn't care.
now at our next session he really confused me. he said he's changin his approach, since the old method wasn't helping me. he tells me he takes 100% responsibility for what happened till now. am i supposed to believe him after he told me clearly that none of it is his fault, that it's all my responsibility because i wasn't trusting him? i can tell he still thinks i should take responsibility, and still thinks he was right to criticize me the way he did even when i told him it hurts me. he's just saying he's taking the responsibility in order to make me feel that he cares about my feelings, but i still feel that he is angry at me for blaming him. what is he really thinking?


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su7kids
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7/4/07 2:03 AM
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He's trying to work out what works for you.

I think that every person must take some responsibility for "non functioning" relationships, and maybe that's what he's trying to get you to do, to see your part in the situation, and since you are resistant to that right now, he's going to try a different approach. Give it a chance. Think about what you could do differently in the relationship, for example, with your parents, and bring those suggestions to him and see how he reacts to it. It may be helpful for the therapy relationship. {just my very unprofessional, but caring thoughts}.

Good luck.


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avious101
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7/4/07 10:30 AM
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i think you should start over and get a new T b/c hes not helping you just making you mad and feel worse i mean it is his job to tell you what ur doing wrong b/c if you say "oh im cutting tonight " then he has to tell you its wrong b/c you could hurt yourself
but dont do anything drastic by what i said its just my opinion and it doesnt make a diference cause tis your life not mine
 
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Belly
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7/4/07 1:32 PM
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There are different approaches in psychology. I once went to someone who just sat there and didn't say a work. It's the Freudian way of therapy. It did not work for me. If your T wants to change his way give it a try. If id doesn't help you ask yourself why. Depending on your answer you will see if it's you who is resisting or if the T is just not the right T for you.

Be strong!
Belly
 
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shtarkebachur
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7/4/07 8:58 PM
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Replying to su7kids
thanks for the support. i just don't get what you meant by "try bringing to the relationship...your parents.." Please tell me in different words what u think i should discuss with him, i didn't understand you.
thanx again


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Edited: 7/4/07 at 9:02 PM by shtarkebachur
 
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su7kids
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7/4/07 9:13 PM
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I think what I meant is, maybe instead of complaining about what your parents are doing and how they are reacting to you, think about what YOU do and how YOU can react differently to them.

Sometimes we think it is all the other person's fault, but it can be that we "aggravate" the situation, or have some part in causing things to happen in a certain way.

Let me think of an example:
A kid complains, "my parents are mean, they don't let me go out with my friends"
and then you ask the parents and they say:
We asked him to do his chores, and after they are done, he can go out with his friends, but he didn't do his chores".

Both sides are somewhat correct. The kid sees that his parents won't let him go out with his friends, and complains to someone who listens and says "You're right, they're mean". but meanwhile, the kid didn't mention in the first place that he was responsible for doing his chores and he didn't do them.

Does that make sense, as an example? There is sometimes more to the story.

A little 3 year old comes and says "He hit me" and you get all angry because the friend hit him. But what the 3 year old forgets to say is "I pushed him first and when he got up, he hit me". He doesn't see the injustice in HIM doing the pushing first, because he felt it was JUSTIFIED. But he sees the injustice of the other one hitting HIM.

What I'm saying is, sometimes the way we react can cause others to respond in a certain way.

I don't nkow you at all, so don't take it as a personal attack, but at 19, (I have a 19 year old son, I know!) you may have some sort of "attitude" that irks your parents and makes them respond in a way that you don't like, but you don't REALIZE that you have that "attitude" because for YOU, that's justified and normal. [I'm not saying yo ARE like that, I'm just using it as an example.]

So, what I'm saying is, look at what YOU do to cause your parents to behave in the way they do (maybe nothing, in which case they may not be mentally stable, and that happens, too) if there is anything that YOU can change about YOURSELF. Think about it, and bring THAT to the Therapist and see if the therapist responds differently.

Does that make sense now? I hope so! ;-)


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shtarkebachur
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7/4/07 9:22 PM
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reply 2 avious101,
don't worry, b"h i'm not depressed enough 2 do anything drastic, i thank u 4 your concern. what's bothering me about my T is that;
he first told me it's my responsibility to talk about everything, and he disagreed with me (that it's his fault that the therapy isn't working), saying it's my fault because i'm not open enough.
but at the very next session he told me it's not my fault, and he's taking 100% responsibility.
i get the feeling that he's lying to me, and he still thinks it's partially my fault (sort of like what su7kids said, that it's my responsibility too).
if he'd tell me it's partially or mostly his fault (that therapy isn't working), i'd believe him. but he's saying that it's 100% his responsibility, and i know that isn't true because it IS partially my fault, and I KNOW HE KNOWS IT'S NOT TRUE. so whom is he trying to fool??


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shtarkebachur
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7/4/07 9:40 PM
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reply 2 su7kids
i know what you mean, and i'm actually working with a different T on how not to feel tense around my parents.
they do have major MAJOR emotional issues and are often emotionally abusive 2 me and my siblings, and used to hit us in anger often when we wer'e smaller, and still s/t does so to my 11 year old brother.
they are basically functional, but they're pretty much not in control of their emotions. my T agrees with this.
they often have yelling fights with ea. other, and have been for as long as i can remember. so i'm tense around them, naturally, and i admit i do have a defensive attitude with them and i sometimes act uncivilly, like when they criticize me harshly, i speak back not nicely.
but I'M not causing them to act this way, and my siblings and T's all agree, so that proves it isn't just my perception, they really are emotionally abusive, and they don't need me to provoke them.
i just want my T to help me feel good enough in the face of my parents who will never be consistently happy with me as i am. when i do something they don't like, they act like i'm evil, even if i didn't hurt them in any way.


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su7kids
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7/4/07 9:55 PM
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Ok, maybe I wasn't clear myself, I'm not saying you're causing them to be the way they are, just what can you do differently.

Let me give you a little story:
10 years ago, my mother passed away. 10 weeks before she passed, I went to visit her and spent 5 weeks with her. We had had a tremendously tumultuous relationship and it was difficult. I loved her because she is my mother, but our relationship STUNK. I was never good enough, etc, and she certainly did the best with what she knew how, but it wasn't anywhere enough for me.

When I went to see her, I hadn't seen her for a while and I thought to myself "I like who I am. I like who I have become, and I like the result of all the hard work I've done on myself. I HOPE she sees it too. But if she doesn't, it doesn't mean its not there!!!"

I found it very helpful, and actually, we had a really good visit. Still wasn't perfect, but my attitude was so much different.


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shtarkebachur
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7/4/07 10:41 PM
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i understand. believe me, i keep trying to think of myself as the good person i am. i sometimes just sit and think about the good i did, just to get used to it. but when i try this i automatically switch, after a short time, back to thinking of myself as not good enough, bad, lazy, wierd.
i try to force myself to think i'm good, because my T's keep questioning me why do i think I'm not good enough, and my sister also tells me how good i am.
but then i still feel bad about myself, and i get SOOOOO FRUSTRATED, and i think something must be wrong with me if all these people think i'm good and i still feel not good enough! it's so frustrating for me to hear so many people telling me to think i'm good and not being able to do it!! i think i'm a perfectionist, but i can't change that either! i think that the only thing that can help me is if people keep giving me support without sounding critical. you are doing that, so please continue.
please tell me what you think.


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su7kids
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7/4/07 10:46 PM
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Interesting that you threw that "i'm a perfectionist" in there, because until that point, I was going to say, you don't have to be "good enough" you just have to be a little bit good.

I have a kid who used to think she was a TOTAL failure when she got 95% on a test. The fact that her grade was the highest in the class, by far, didn't matter to her. She failed, she was no good, she would never be good enough, and she grew out of it when I used to get excited if she did LESS than 80% on a test.

You can allow yourself to have a little bit of not good, as long as you acknowledge that there is SOME good.

Who do you want to be good enough FOR? Who is deciding what is good enough? and what authority do they have? (i.e.if its you, who made you an "expert" on who is perfect?) [said with a smile!]

Do you have others who tell you you're not good enough? Do you think that the "dysfunction" with your parents is your fault?


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shtarkebachur
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7/5/07 2:12 AM
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to the question if there are people who tell me i'm not good enough, yes. my mother treats me like i'm a bad person whenever i don't follow her "advice". she doesn't give me the choice whether to take her advice or not.
if i don't, even on a minor thing (which she considers major, like when i left my bicycle standing outside and she told me to bring it in so it doesn't get stolen, and i said i'm leaving with it in a minute anyway and she demanded that i bring it in, and i said it won't get stolen so there's no reason to bring it in, and she took it personally and became angrier and began to threaten to punish me if it gets stolen, that i'll have to pay her the amount of the bike since she bought it for me,so i said if it gets stolen i'll just buy myself a new bike, and she said no, i'll have to pay her. she gets so mad when someone refuses to let her be in control, that she becomes totally irrational and you can't explain a simple concept to her, and she acts like the person is hurting her by not letting her be in control, and therefore that person is bad) she acts towards me like i'm evil.
PLEASE don't tell me it's my perception, this is really how she acts. if you need me to go into more detail in order to believe me, say so. but my sister who is happily married for 4 years agrees that this is true. so does my 2nd T, who sees my mother separately, and knows more about her than we told him.(we-meaning me and my sister who go together to him for therapy).
do you realize what i'm doing here? i'm trying desperately to convince you that my mother is really giving me negative messages about me. because i don't want you to think it's just my perception.
i need you to tell me that you believe me that my mother is making me feel negatively about myself.(unless you don't in which case i'll try to convince you some more.) this is why i feel the need to write such long letters! i'm trying so hard to convince you! it would mean so much to me if you could reassure me that you trust my judgement.(especially since you are a woman my mother's age, so it would help me be less affected by my mother's constant contradicting of my beliefs, feelings,OPINIONS and perception of reality.)
please really listen to what i'm saying.
and please don't criticize me. i really need you to continue to be sensitive not to make me feel under attack.
and please tell me if you didn't mean that something's wrong with me when you told me to work on myself. i felt hurt when you wrote that because i'm so used to hearing advice as a negative statement about me. i think you didn't mean it that way, but i need you to reassure me about this. (probably because i'm so used to being invalidated by my mother that i automatically think of your statements as coming from my mother.)
also, and i'm asking this of everyone else in this forum too; any advice you give me , i appreciate tremendously. and please, reassure me every time you give advice that you don't think i'm not good enough. that way i won't feel criticized by your well-meaning advice.


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su7kids
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7/5/07 2:41 AM
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Well, I heard what you need, and before you even wrote that I was going to add: Just because your mother treats you this way, does NOT mean you ARE this way.

You are a creation of Hashem. Hashem wants you here, and that in itself gives you value.

I understand your explanation of your mother. I don't accept that its right what she's doing. She's quite wrong to treat you this way. You deserve better. You ARE better. You are a person of value and worth.

It goes back to waht I said earlier about "Does her perception of you make it so?" and my answer right now is, "NO, it doesn't." You ARE a person of value. She is just blinded to it when she is in this rage.

When I said "work on yourself" what I meant by that is not that you are LACKING in anything, however, try to understand this: Lets go back to your bike example that you gave above here:

You probably knew your mother would rant about you leaving the bike outside. I'm not saying you're wrong or bad, I'm just giving you an idea of a way you can handle it differently. You could have just gone and brought the bike in, just to keep her quiet. Not because you agree with her, but for the peace. Does that make it WRONG and BAD that you didn't? No, not at all. I'm just trying to give you a perspective of how to deal with a dysfunctional parent.

I do believe you about your mother, I have met people like that. Its very scary to be yelled at for EVERYTHING. YOu feel like you can't win.

But, what you may want to speak to your therapist about, and probably you did, is how do you feel good about yourself when someone is putting you down all the time. How do you strengthen your own self worth when the person closest to you is putting you down, usually irrationally.

Let me say this, and let me say it carefully: You may never please your mother EVER. That doesn't make it that you're not GOOD ENOUGh, it means, your mother is "unplease-able" Does that make sense? It kinda means, if you were someone else, you still wouldn;t please her, because she cannot be pleased. Its not YOU, its HER.

What I'm begging you is to learn NOT to take what she says as being TRUE and Correct because its NOT.

Its kinda like saying to yourself "You can have your opinion, and I have mine, and I'm choosing mine right now". However, if there are ways you can do what she wants, just to keep the PEACE, then THAT is something you can contribute.

Does that make sense?

I so want to give you a hug, because I hear loud and clear where you're coming from and I don't want you to hurt so much.


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shtarkebachur
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7/5/07 2:49 AM
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i'm crying.
i'm going to read your letter another ten times.


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shtarkebachur
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7/5/07 3:11 AM
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good night! you give me a faint glimmer of hope.


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Edited: 7/5/07 at 10:23 PM by shtarkebachur
 
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shtarkebachur
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7/5/07 7:52 PM
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i heard what you said. it helped, but i need you to keep writing. i need your reassurance that your'e still thinking of me. i'm afraid you will stop caring about me. please write me every day. it would help me a lot. even when i don't respond, keep sending me reassurance. i need it.


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shtarkebachur
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7/5/07 10:48 PM
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in your last post, you said:
I do believe you about your mother, I have met people like that. Its very scary to be yelled at for EVERYTHING. YOu feel like you can't win.

But, what you may want to speak to your therapist about, and probably you did, is how do you feel good about yourself when someone is putting you down all the time. How do you strengthen your own self worth when the person closest to you is putting you down, usually irrationally.


what did you mean by "but"?

i don't think you meant this but to me it sounds like you're saying,"but don't start to trust me now, even though i just sympathized with you, because i'm about to criticize you about not speaking to your therapist about this." i know that you said "and probably you did," but that doesn't reassure me, it just confuses me because it sounds like you're contradicting yourself.

if you want me to explain more, ask me.

please have patience. don't give up on me even though i can't trust.


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Edited: 7/5/07 at 10:49 PM by shtarkebachur
 
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su7kids
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7/5/07 10:57 PM
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Thats ok. It wasn't meant to be a criticism, it was meant to be a suggestion.

I'm saying I believe you, maybe I should have said "and" instead of "but", but it WAS late at night!

I don't think I'm contradicting myself. I trust that you have thought of these issues, and that you HAVE spoken to your therapist about it. I'm maybe hoping just to give you a different perspective on the same story.

I think every ONE of us can grow and learn, and I know I still am, so I'm suggesting that maybe there are different ways to look at the same story that you may or may not have thought of already. I don't want to come across as thinking you're an idiot and that you can't handle the situation by yourself. i think you probalby have much more intelligence that you give yourself credit for, so I'm giving you credit for having used that intelligence.

Does that make sense?

I, in no way, intend to make you feel criticized. Its a suggestion.

And, by the way, I'm "just a mommy". I have no medical, psychological, psychiatric background whatsoever. I JUST care! I don't like to see people hurting, and I know that in my life I 've grown and learned from so many people, so I feel that if I can share SOME of what I have learned over the years, it may be worth it.

It would be awesome if you, at 19, could learn what it took me until my 30's to learn!


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shtarkebachur
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7/6/07 2:55 AM
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thanks. youre helping.


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avious101
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7/6/07 3:57 PM
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dont worry she wont give up on you - at least she diddnt with me even when i started purging and hopefully she still does
 
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su7kids
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7/6/07 7:18 PM
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Avious, I hope to continue being there for you, too!!


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shtarkebachur
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7/8/07 5:04 AM
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i thought about what you said, i read over all of your posts over shabbos, a few times, (yeah. i printed them out), and i found that a few hours ago when i thought about how you said that you care, and that's why you're saying this and that my mother is wrong about me, i felt warm towards the people around me, instead of feeling defensive. that isn't much, but iv'e been feeling almost non-stop defensive, hostile, or persecuted for a VERY long time, and this good feeling really got me excited.

i really did think over what you said, but no Dtails now need sleep bye


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su7kids
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Glad its helpful. I mean it.


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shtarkebachur
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7/9/07 8:28 PM
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you said a while ago, do i feel responsible for my parents' dysfunction. i don't think i made them the way they are but i do feel guilty when i complain about s/t they did to me and they become angry.

when that happens, i realize they are giving me a message that i'm wrong for saying this, since it bothers them, and my need to express my pain is irrelevant, b/c by doing so i'm hurting them.

are they correct? do i have to keep quiet when s/o bothers me if complaining will hurt the person's feelings?

i know you might say that i have the right to stop them from hurting me again, and my pain is just as important as their's, so the fact that my complaint bothers them doesn't mean i have to suffer in silence...

but what if i know they will anyway repeat the behavior? you can't say i may hurt them by complaining about it in order to get relief from what they are doing to me, b/c they will anyway not change. but i still need to complain that i'm being hurt, and when i do so, they accuse me of being insensitive.

even when they don't explicitly accuse me, i feel deeply ashamed of myself that i could hurt my parents this way. (maybe because i know that they're angry at me and thinking i'm evil for doing this to them.)

(btw, when i say about me complaining to them, i'm referring to a non-accusatory manner, which my parents take as a pesonal insult anyway and it hurts them.)

please be patient with me, i know i would have lost patience with me by now.


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su7kids
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7/9/07 8:36 PM
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Based on answers you have given, I don't think you are responsible for your parents dysfunction. What I was trying to get at is, sometimes we create a situation without realizing it. I think it has become clear to me that this is not the case.

I think your parents are doing the best they can with the tools they have and you have to keep remembering that. So, if sometimes you want to complain, don't complain to them. Find a friend or a therapist who will listen if you need to get it off your chest. Complaining to them just creates the cycle that hurts you.

This is who they are. Accept them for who they are, limited, but doing their best.

Maybe your therapist can arrange some family counseling time where you can safely tell your parents what's bothering you. At this point, I wouldn't do it without support around you.

Due to the way you have been raised, you immediately assume that you are the one who caused them to be this way, caused their hurt, caused their anger, and I have begun to see that this is not the case at all.

I think you don't really know what they think of you, unless they tell you, so don't assume it to be more than it already is. Make sense?

As I said before, you have to be OK with who you are, and if they see it, great, if not, its THEIR loss, not your fault.

By the way, is it both your parents, or just one who behaves this way and the other doesn't do anything to stop it?


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shtarkebachur
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7/9/07 10:17 PM
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actually i do know what they think of me while they're angry, they think i'm evil. their expression, tone, words all give me this message very clearly. if youd ask them what they think of me they'll say i'm great. but when they're angry at me it's as if i am a different person who possessed my body, who's evil. i remember my mother saying this about my brother, who used to be the most "difficult" of us kids (a few boys and a girl):

"the yetzer hora is controlling you when you throw a tantrum." "it's like a dibbuk got into you."
or she'd say it third person in front of him.

she needs to think this in order to feel justified in severely hurting and shaming me, b/c the good person i really am doesn't deserve that.

i'll u/s if u think it's just my perception, so say so and i'll convince you more. i feel out of breath when i start writing s/t that you might not believe. yeah, u heard right.

i will feel insulted that u don't believe me, but i need to know what you're really thinking.

in the past, my father used to speak up more often 2 defend us from her criticism, but it was not much help since you could tell he was just trying to start a fight, which worked usually.

[i just realized what helped me the most to see my parents as abusive (which is necessary for me to heal) is that they used to yell at each other about trreating us badly. it would b funny if it wasn't so sad B/c they were such hypocrites, yelling at us and at their spouse for yelling at us. so their fighting is helping me become healthy. thanx, old folks. (people who grow up abused with noone who can tell them it's abuse think it's normal and they do it to their kids).]

they tried very hard to intimidate ea. other, and i think pops used 2 b better at it, but now he is like a ghost, only my mother is in charge in the house, at least with regard 2 us kids.

but yeah, they both use the same idea of saying (ok, expressing) that wer'e bad and therefore deserve pain and shame. i just keep saying my mother b/c pops is a shadow.


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su7kids
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7/9/07 10:47 PM
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Oh, I believe you, 100%. I'm just trying to get a picture of how things are for you. Remember, we're anonymous here, and I don't know you except for what you write here.

If your mother is that abusive, I definitely think you should NOT answer her back. It will just win you more abuse.

Your job, my friend, is to decide that when YOU are a parent, you're going to do a better job, and have a GREAT relationship with your wife and your kids, and not repeat the pattern. I believe you can do that.

Just don't hurt yourself in any way in the meantime. Treasure yourself, be your OWN best friend, and know that you are a Creation of Hashem, and therefore very valuable in this world. Besides the fact that I think I like you! LOL That's just an added bonus.

I sense a strength in you.

That "out of breathe" may be somewhat of a panic or anxiety attack. Speak to your doctor about it, if you can. Deep breathes.



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shtarkebachur
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7/10/07 2:40 AM
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just thought i'd share this w/ u;

whenever i'm doing things that i want to accomplish, i think that i have to focus on what i'm doing wrong in order 2 push myself 2 succeed. i'm afraid that if i don't, i will not get anywhere. i'm not sure if that's true, but i know that as long as i remember i've been doing it that way, and it's been SORT OF working 4 me, b/c i know i've been very successful in some things.

i say sort of, meaning that it ruins my concentration to think how i'm not really getting anywhere, like when i'm learning (also when i try to think healthy). SO i try to ALSO encourage myself, (by thinking how much i've accomplished), AND at the same time push myself to succeed (by thinking how far i still am from success), all while trying to focus on the gemara (or the healthy thought).

it's not easy 2 think 3 thoughts at a time.

in addition to the multi-braining problem, i think that i have to constantly raise my expectations of myself, or else i'll never reach my true potential (whatever that is). so i end up never having accomplished anything, and that makes me unmotivated, except by fear of what will happen if i don't succeed.

to sum it up:


i think i have to focus on what i'm doing wrong in order to keep my foot on the gas pedal, because if i don't i'll just stop moving for lack of motivation.

i think i have to be unsatisfied and think i must accomplish THE MOST in order to feel like a success, which means i'll NEVER feel good about myself unless i become Hashem and transform myself into-actually then i'll be fine the way i am.

just a tip:

i don't expect you to cover e/t in your response! just thought i'd say what's on my mind.


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Edited: 7/10/07 at 2:41 AM by shtarkebachur
 
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su7kids
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7/10/07 2:53 AM
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There is a very important tool you could try to use:

Endorse for effort, not success.

That means, you praise yourself for the EFFORT you're making to get to where you're going, not necessarily the RESULTS. Focus on the process, and endorse (encourage, say nice things about it) for all the good little steps you're taking. That way you're also not overwhelmed by trying to reach the end, which seems so far away from you.

If you say "great job shtarkebachur" (or whatever your real name is! LOL) when you make an effort, firstly, you're encouraging yourself, and secondly, you're training your mind to hear you say good things to yourself. Your brain doesn't CARE who says nice things, as long as it hears them!!

Keep going shtarkebachur, you're doing great!


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shtarkebachur
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7/10/07 10:40 AM
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thank u, just 4 your info, i'm taking your advice.
btw, i am leaving on friday this week, and probably will not be able to write 4 the next 4 weeks (starting friday).
just thought i'd give you some advance notice.


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su7kids
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7/10/07 10:47 AM
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That's ok. I'll miss you and be thinking good strong thoughts for you!


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shtarkebachur
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7/11/07 12:57 AM
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today i worked a lot on endorsing myself for effort. i became aware how much i've been hurting myself by criticizing myself for failure! it doesn't make me succeed, it's just so not logical 2 do that!!

i understand now that the reason i always criticize myself is b/c i feel like i don't deserve any better. i know i will succeed anyway if i just endorse myself for effort, even if i refrain from being mean 2 myself. but i anyway criticize myself harshly, b/c i think i'm a bad person who deserves 2 b punished. it's as if i need to hurt myself to force myself 2 b good, b/c otherwise i'll just do what's natural for me- to b a bad person, which i am. in essence i'm bad, so by nature i do bad things unless i'm scared of getting hurt 4 doing it.

in other words:
i'm bad. i don't want to be bad. therefore i will hurt myself until i become good.

makes sense, no?

i think it does. if i get hurt for doing something every time i do it, i will naturally stop doing it. so the way for me to become not a bad person is by hurting myself every time i'm a bad person.

the problem is that i'm always bad, even if i'm doing s/t good, so i have to hurt myself 4 everything i do. i'm still waiting 4 the point when i'll be so hurt that i'll magically become good.

these are the concious thoughts. what's really driving these thoughts is a little kid's need to be loved by his parents. the little kid tries whatever he possibly can to be "good", (to be someone who his parents think deserves love). he's so desperate to be loved. he can't live without love, it is so painful and scary. life becomes a struggle to stay alive by being good and deserving love.


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su7kids
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7/11/07 1:08 AM
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Actually, it makes sense the way you're thinking it, but it doesn't make sense. Right now, your perception of yourself is that you are bad, and if you hurt yourself for what YOU think is bad, you may have incorrect standards for yourself. So, its better to encourage yourself when you do GOOD.

If you want to change a behavior, you need to endorse endorse endorse for every GOOD thing you do. That way you'll come to realize how good it feels to hear praise and then you'll want to do more.

Also, don't hurt yourself when you do something wrong, ignore bad behavior and endorse good behavior. Whatever you give energy to, grows.

It definitely sounds like you're making progress!

Remember, there are two chances for a great parent/child relationship. Once when you're the child, and then again when you're the parent. So learn all you can from your parents so you know what NOT to do when YOU are a parent.


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shtarkebachur
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7/11/07 10:28 AM
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THANK YOU!! you really helped me sort out my thoughts. i'll do my best to endorse myself for the good work i do and ignore the bad. it's hard b/c it feels like a lie, since i still think i'm a bad person, most of the time.


i say most of the time b/c when i tried to do this endorsing yesterday, i started to think that maybe i am a good person. so i feel hope that maybe i will eventually feel that way in general.


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su7kids
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7/11/07 11:14 AM
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YAY! You're learning!!!


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shtarkebachur
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7/11/07 8:50 PM
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i'm just so frustrated that i keep seeing people as criticizing me!! my therapist, whom i met 2day, finally told me something i can do to not feel so criticized (after i argued with him for 40 minutes). he said i should step back, take a few deep breaths and say to myself, he's not criticizing me, he's just giving me constructive something.

i told him i tried thinking that already, but he just bypassed that and told me to think it doesn't make sense that he's criticizing me. T really confuses me. i told him i can tell he isn't being open w/ me, and he smiled and denied it. he kept saying he wants to help me, that it's my fault that i think i'm being criticized. i agreed, but i said what am i supposed 2 do? so he told me 2 do the above. i tried, and told him i'd have 2 do it all day to start feeling that i'm not being criticized. he smiled and said this way i won't want to think anymore that i'm being criticized, b/c i won't want 2 have 2 bother with doing this exercise, and i'll start 2 realize how stupid it is 2 think i'm being criticized. i told him i'm feeling criticized right now. He smiled knowingly, as if to say, well, you know what you have to do.

so i guess he's telling me i should just think that i'm not being criticized, until i get so annoyed that i'll automatically stop thinking i'm being criticized, just to avoid the discomfort of having to think that i'm not being criticized.

i tried doing this, and i am getting so frustrated!! when i try to do what T said, to breathe and think that i'm not being criticized, i get out of breath,(meaning i forget to breathe-not anxiety attack) i feel tense(trying to force myself to think that i'm not being criticized), and i feel so fed up with myself because it's just not helping, and i still am feeling just as insulted!! GRRRRR

i don't know what to do with myself.

i like the idea of endorsing myself for effort but it sounded like my T thinks i should just force myself to do this b/c it's my fault that i feel criticized.

i don't expect u to change the way i feel, but i think you can really help me sort out what i'm feeling now, and give me some of your deep thoughts to advise me how to proceed.

i'm sooo frustrated!! WAHHH!!


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shtarkebachur
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7/11/07 8:58 PM
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hey Kids, nice 2 c ur on now. what's up?


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su7kids
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7/11/07 9:05 PM
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You're probably not going to like this, but to some degree, I agree with your therapist. You have to change your mindset. Not because you MUST or because you're WRONG, but because its healthier for you.

Whatever method works, do it. You can, I know you can! You're doing so well already, so much stronger than when you first started here.

I have a good friend whom I used to say this to, all the time, and he finally got it: Its not always all about you! In other words, sometimes when someone say something that sounds inappropriate to you, it may be more that THEY can't do any better and this is all they know, and maybe they really DIDN"T mean it to come across the way that it did, and because you're so supersensitive to it, you THINK they mean its you, but its not.

When I would talk to him, he would tell me about how the thoughts would run in his head and he is sure that someone feels this about him, and he's sure they think this, and eventually he'd have a whole scenario in his head that had NOTHING to do with the real intentions of the person who spoke up.

Lets paint a small scene here.
He's sitting in a chair and there's an open chair on either side of him, and his friend comes with his wife. So, he asks my friend to move over a seat.

Oy, says my friend, you see, he didn't really want to sit with me. He asked me to move. I'm in his way, I'm not worthy of sitting in that chair. He just wanted me to get up and move so I could find a seat somewhere else so he could sit down, and now he sees that I didn't move and so he thinks I"m not caring about his feelings, and now he won't want to be my friend anymore, and I'm a bad person because I didn't move up before he got there when I saw him with his wife, and see, I'm rotten, I don't even deserve to be in the room with him, so I'm going home and I'm not even going to go to Shul tomorrow, because he'll be there and he doesn't want to see me, and ........... etc

Get the picture? All the friend wanted was for my friend to make space so his friend could sit with his wife. However, those thoughts just run and run and run.

So, you choose to either think "Oh, he just wanted me to move. No problem, I'll move." or you can go into that long train of illogical thought and feel like he's out to get you.

That's where the choices are. Its a choice. And if you choose one way, that's your choice, and you choose all that comes with it, and same if you choose another way. It does NOT make you criticized or a BAD person.

Sometimes when you think a person is criticizing you, he's not even THINKING about you in the first place. He's just opening his mouth and letting hot air go out with words.

So, every time you use the "he's giving me constructive criticism" instead of "I'm no good and he's criticizing me" that's when you endorse. And when I say, endorse for effort and not success, its a case of you say "great job" every time you do anything small towards your goal. Don't beat yourself up until you get to your goal and then think you'll be marvelous. You have to get into the habit NOW of saying how wonderful you are.

Think it, and it will be so!

You can do it! I know it!


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avious101
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7/11/07 9:44 PM
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ok i had a whole thing to say but then my power went out and then i forgot and then i wrote s/t else and then again bye bye power so ri dont no what to say or how to help u but i feel bad for you that ur going through such a hard time and i dont no if u want pity i dont no what u want but i hope e/t gets beter soon
and PLEASE take care of yourself while ur away and i hope everythings ok w/ u that u have to go away
 
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shtarkebachur
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7/11/07 10:12 PM
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i'm okay, i'm getting a summer job for 4 weeks. thanx for the post. i don't think that was pity, it feels good to know i have your support. sorry about the power. if u think of a/t to say i certainly don't mind, and if i do i'll tell you! just ask Kids! i don't shut up when s/t is bothering me, at least here i don't, i feel safe enough to speak up about a/t.

and su7kids, thanx 4 taking the time to read that and write that! woah! i guesss it is my responsibility to think healthy, but it's really hard after so much unhealthy thinking! i feel so discouraged b/c most o/ the time i automatically think that people are thinking negatively about me and when i catch myself thinking that i automatically begin to beat myself up over it!! i know that is also my responsibility to be encouraging to myself, but that's so hard too, for the same reason, and b/c i get discouraged when i feel discouraged.

thanx 4 your support, it does make it easier for me to think healthy thoughts, even though the actual thinking is totally my choice.


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su7kids
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7/11/07 11:29 PM
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Hey, Shtark, I saw something in what you wrote:
You wrote " MOST OF THE TIME". That's big, because that's not ALL of the time!! That's progress!!!

Endorse, endorse, endorse!


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shtarkebachur
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7/12/07 1:40 AM
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you sound like a fan cheering me. i like it!


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gad
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7/12/07 2:09 AM
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Criticism:

It can be done with love and caring. Or lashing out.

When a therapist, who is trained to help, criticizes, it is usually to help.

But as su7kids write, we sometimes confuse the two (especially if we have been the recepient of lashing out).

But proper criticism can be extremely helpful. It helps put us on the path of truth.

So the next time your therapist criticizes you, assume that he wants to help, and cares, and is doing his job.

And the next time someone criticizes in an abusive way, try to feel sorry for that person, that they have personal problems, and realize that your essence is good and holy, and that you have accomplished many good things till now, and with G-d's help you will continue to accomplish many many more good things.
 
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avious101
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7/12/07 5:45 PM
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hey u changed ur picture 2 An alian
ok as long as e/t is ok
 
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shtarkebachur
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7/12/07 6:37 PM
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yeah, everything's great. i'm not sure how that happened to my face.

i want to make an announcement that today i caught myself a hundred times thinking that people are think bad about me, and i told myself they most likely are not even thinking about me!!

i also want to say that i told myself GREAT JOB, GREAT WORK, YOU"RE DOING GR8, I"M PROUD OF YOU!! every time i changed that thought!!

Also, i'm very proud of myself!!!

but most of all, i remember who lit up the way for me, and i know who is giving me the spirit to continue- YOU!! thank you so much for supporting me to change my life, and thank you in advance for all the great things i will soon be able to do! BE PROUD OF YOURSELVES!

su7kids, you are a wise person, you gave me the ability to see what i already knew to be true, but i was trying not to realize, by giving me such warm support while giving me your advice. that is what is helping me see the truth b/c i don't feel the need to defend myself.

don't take it that i am totally changed already though. it's just that i can see where this work is leading me, and i feel so HAPPY!!


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su7kids
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7/12/07 7:14 PM
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Yay Shtarke!!!

I'm so excited for you! Can you tell how much better it makes you feel?

At least now if someone does be "mean" to you, you're so fortified (strengthened) by all the good things you're sayig to yourself! That is so great!!!


I'm soo sooo sooo happy for you. Small baby steps, one step at a time. One day at a time, one endoresment at a time, and they will all add up eventually!!




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avious101
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7/12/07 7:24 PM
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wow thats gr8 i hope ul continue to make progress and not slide backwards like i did/am
Su7kids- gr8 work 2
 
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gad
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7/12/07 8:03 PM
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Shtarke, glad to hear the good news. May you go from good to better.

Avious, it says that even a Tzadik sometimes falls backward, and then he rises. So you deserve a lot of credit for the efforts that you made, and for what you did accomplish. May you also succeed in going from good to better, and from strength to strength.

And as for that card, it sounds like you were fustrated, and you were expressing it. But clearly your past posts show that you care very much about people and try to help them. So you are for sure a Tzadeikes, especially since it says that every Jew is a Tzadik.

I hope that you find a solution for the hair, and that you have good news to post.
 
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avious101
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7/12/07 8:10 PM
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thanx
 
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shtarkebachur
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7/13/07 12:45 AM
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btw, i'm NOT leaving yet, till after shabbos, so keep on posting 4 me! you guys are so amazing! it's so much easier for me to cheer 4 myself when you're all cheering along ! it's so hard for me to believe myself when i'm endorsing myself, i feel like i'm lying 2 myself. but when i read all of you cheering for me, i suddenly began to think, hey, maybe they are right.

about sliding backward, avious101, i still do slide into the old thoughts a lot, if that's what u mean. but i really try very hard to remember what su7 says, that i should keep cheering myself for the good i do, and ignore the bad. so i actually am holding very far from thinking healthy thoughts all the time.(maybe not so much, i'll find out hopefully soon). like i said, it's hard 4 me and frustrating. so when i realize it, i try to muster the strength to start thinking positive.

u know what's the toughest about it? that i feel a lot of the time that all this work is for nothing. i'm so scared of that thought b/c it might stop me totally from even trying, and then i know for sure that i'll stay depressed and lonely. so i try to shut that thought up, and to forget that i ever thought it, to take away that discouragement, but that usually doesn't work.

thank u 4 writing about your sliding back, b/c it gave me the courage to write about myself sliding back most of the time. it really hurts a lot, and that's why i was trying to deny it to make it go away, but i guess that does'nt work. it's probably better to speak about it so i can get support when it feels so easy to give up.

in reality i only spent like 5 minutes total thinking these healthy thoughts, but the times that i did, i felt something, and that got me really excited b/c i know i am not just wasting my time!!!! i'm really starting 2 feel better, even though it's a tinytinytiny drop of better which isn't a strong feeling at ALL. it's the fact that i realized i can make s/t happen that got me excited!

listen avious, i really don't know a/t about your situation, but maybe try to endorse yourself for some good things u do. i don't think it will change you, but maybe you'll feel a little good, like me, and you'll maybe get so excited about seeing that you can change a little, and maybe then you'll want to do it more! but i really don't know if this will work 4 u also, ask su7, she has a lot of life experience. i'm just a kid trying to make myself feel better, and so i feel pain when i see you in despair b/c i have SO much experience with that.

i really hope this will help me get happy and hopeful. i'm still in so much pain. i'm trying very hard to focus only on the good i'm doing so i will feel better instead of worse.


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Edited: 7/13/07 at 12:48 AM by shtarkebachur
 
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