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Old 03-02-2005, 01:12 AM
LJiron LJiron is offline
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Default My world has fallen apart

Beginning when I was a little girl, I have worked to make my life the perfect fairy-tale life or what I imagined life should be. Things were going to happen in the order that I wanted and I was successful in making things happen for myself. I participated in sports, completed high-school, got married, obtained a bachelor's degree, got a professional job, had kids and lived a wonderful life until my world fell apart.

About 10 years ago my 19-year old son was killed by a drunk driver. This was the worst day of my life. The drunk driver never accepted responsibility for the crash, so we went through a trial. He was found guilty in about 10 minutes after the jury left to deliberate. He was able to temporarily avoid his jail sentence using appeals. His conviction was upheld by the State court of Appeals, but he was granted an appeal hearing with the State Supreme Court. (That took about 2 years). The conviction was upheld and he finally went to jail. Obviously during this time my husband nor I were dealing with our physical or emotional well-being or anything else for that matter.

When the drunk driver finally went to jail, it was time to crash. My husband and I both obtained counceling.. My fairy-tale life had totally disintegrated. After a while I was able to regain small, but recognizable control over my life. I still braced for the next blow. I didn't know what it would be, but I never expected it to be my husband killing himself with a handgun. It was also the same day my brother lost his battle with cancer.

It has been 3 years since my husband's death. I am bracing more than ever for the next blow. I sometimes cry, but mostly I hold it in until I feel that I am going to explode. I feel so alone in all of this. I try to understand what my husband was going through (depression, chronic pain, and a recent cardiac bypass) and I was doing pretty well until recently. I am now experiencing intense anger for what he did. So intense that I want to put my fist through a wall or my car through a brick wall. I really long for that sense of control over my life, my emotions, and sanity.

You published an article: "Controlling life isn't the answer, it is the problem." How does that apply when your world has fallen apart?
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Old 03-03-2005, 02:55 AM
Dr. Joe Dr. Joe is offline
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You've endured such horrific circumstances...clearly there's no simple answer I can offer. As I see it, turning away from the painful past and letting life unfold in a more neutral manner will be your biggest challenge. Your tendency may be to reflexively expect bad things to happen, but this reflex must be resisted. I feel itís important for you to try not to allow negativity, fear, or insecurity to dictate. Instead try to discipline yourself by turning away from your congested, reflective, reminiscent thoughts. Youíll need a bit of Self-Coaching to help you practice this ëletting go,í but it can be done. Whether it be washing a dish, driving your car, or preparing dinner, practice being focused on what youíre doing, not what youíre thinking. Youíll find that letting go of thoughts is an essential step toward eventually neutralizing the grip of ruminative thinking. The key is to Let life unfold while giving yourself a chance to continue your healing process. Congested, insecurity-tainted thinking will only deplete you and continue to victimize you. Try to point yourself forward, put one foot in front of the other, and let life come to you. For now, be aware of simplifying your life. Look for simple pleasures and moments where you can touch a bit of solace...be patient and be courageous.

Disclaimer: The diagnosis of clinical anxiety or depressive disorders requires a physician or other qualified mental health professional. The information provided is intended for informational purposes only. Please understand that the opinions shared with you are meant to be general reference information, and are not intended as a diagnosis or substitute for consulting with your physician or other qualified mental health professional.


Yours,
Dr. Joe
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