Medium chill or "stonewalling"?

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twistybobcatpretzel

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Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« on: May 17, 2017, 09:42:35 AM »
Last year, we briefly went to therapy.  It's so far away that we eventually had to stop going.  There is no local therapy available.

I feel the therapy was more harm than good for many reasons.   

One of the things they kept pushing on us was John Gottman's Four Horsemen.

I had been using medium chill a lot to get through dealing with my husband.  (Who has strong traits of borderline personality disorder)

But the therapists called this "stonewalling" and discouraged it.  They did not understand that if I don't emotionally  check out of the conversation, he would ****literally**** keep arguing for hours.    I *have* to just stop responding to get him to shut the living hell up.   

I'm still bothered by our therapist sessions last year.  We both had individual therapy, with 2 separate therapists and one joint session with a 3rd therapist, all in the same practice.  The all communicated with each other, and I believe that he told own tainted borderline delusional side to his therapist, who then fed that info to my therapist, as if these were things I actually needed to work on.  My therapist was grossly inexperienced in the way bpd people spin stories, and I believed she looked at me, halfway believing him, seeing traits he assigned to me that weren't there, or without seeing clearly why I had came to cope this way, or how that behavior had to do with him.

She also wanted me to put away coping mechanisms from the past too soon. I knew he wasn't better enough for me to not have certain mental crutches in place for me.  (Such as medium chill.)  she wanted me to trust him too soon. They just took him being there regularly to mean that he was better.  They praised him to the highest for showing up, (particularly one time when he went alone because I had  had a minor surgery), simply because they don't see many men who will readily come in, particularly without their spouse. 

What they don't take into account is that my husband lives for talking about himself.  Particularly if he's getting nothing but constant gratification without any opposing info from witnesses to the events he describes that counteract his version of events.  He's still be going all alone, if it didn't get to be too much traveling for us.   He is not one to shirk mental health, like many men tend to do, and once he found out that the therapist wasn't going to tell him he's wrong, he was all for having an hour-long fap fest weekly.  **I don't think he deserved props for just showing up ** and I believe that therapists who have experience with these types of self centered disorders should have been able to pick up on that.   I don't believe he was interested in changing.  I believe he was interested in being validated/told he was *right*.  They took him showing up willingly as if he was so interested in trying to be better.   And my skepticism as to how they were handling things as if *I* was the one with the problem.

I left there feeling I did have a problem so many times.  The only person who could see clearly was our marriage therapist, who was the only one to ever see both of us together, and saw with her own eyes and immediately heard both sides of the story right then and there.  My husband told me that he didn't like how she "always seemed to be on my side."    If it wasn't for her, I'd have left that place thoroughly beat down and gaslighted every single week.

Ok, so I started typing and the floodgates opened up.  I'm still bothered by this after a year.  I didn't mean for this to be this long.  We live far away from mental health professionals and many doctors in general, and we are planning on moving before the year is out and resuming therapy.  Only this time, I want my own therapist completely non-affiliated with wherever it is that he decides to go.

Bottom line is, is there a difference between "medium chill" and "stonewalling"?  Am I doing it wrong?  Or were they just grossly inexperienced with handling bpd people?
« Last Edit: May 17, 2017, 10:35:45 AM by twistybobcatpretzel »

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coyote

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #1 on: May 17, 2017, 09:59:35 AM »
twisty, IMO there is a big difference between MC and stonewalling. You were not stonewalling. I think it was very inappropriate for your T to dictate to you what you should be doing when and also to keep pushing one theory or another. IMO it is more what works for that person and Gottman does not work for everyone.

It looks like to me you had a bad experience with an inexperienced T. You are right to insist on experience and confidentiality.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

“The only person educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change.”  Carl Rogers

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

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twistybobcatpretzel

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #2 on: May 17, 2017, 10:27:48 AM »
They gave us that same stupid horseman printout several times. 

These people were suppose to be experienced in personality disorders.  I've lost faith in my ability to choose mental health care professionals. 

My husband went to the head therapist in the practice.  He was supposedly use to dealing with inmates and those types of people.  They said he was skilled in seeing through bullsh*t stories.

My therapist was a very young woman who was newly engaged and gushed frequently about her fiance.  Her methods of solving problems with him (...or her dogs...or her nieces) could not come close to helping me deal with my marriage of then-15 years with a man who grew up in an abusive home, and my high functioning autistic kid and my other ADHD kid.

I get tired of other mental health care people (such as my psychiatrist, who I go to for my depression medication) trying to explain to me that a therapist doesn't have to live an experience to know how to help another person navigate it.   I know that is all true, but that doesn't change the fact that this particular therapist had absolutely no experience even in *helping others* navigate the crap I was going through at the time.

It was well a known fact that the therapists collaborated with each other for situations such is these. They worked jointly to help each other with their patients.  As such, I was hoping the marriage therapist would put in whatever 2 cents she had from our joint sessions, but I don't think they took her input seriously, or maybe she didn't give enough info, I don't know. 

It's probably better to not go to a practice like this any more.  I want my own therapist to be my own therapist.  Ill
« Last Edit: May 17, 2017, 10:29:54 AM by twistybobcatpretzel »

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coyote

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #3 on: May 17, 2017, 11:16:35 AM »
I agree twisty. Self disclosure from a T should only be done in interest of the client IMO. (Who cares about her dogs). It is not always easy to find a T that fits you but when you do it can be a game changer. Hang in there
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

“The only person educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change.”  Carl Rogers

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

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twistybobcatpretzel

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #4 on: May 17, 2017, 05:33:27 PM »
Thanks, coyote.

I looked up a bit of info on stonewalling.  Maybe I did stonewall a bit (leave mid-conversation/argument) from time to time.

The texts that I read never mention stonewalling behavior in response to bullying behavior.  What else is someone suppose to do when the person is arguing unfairly and verbally attaching you?

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coyote

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2017, 08:20:45 AM »
Call it what you want but it is perfectly OK to leave an abusive conversation. It is also a logical consequence to a personal boundary. So, Boundary is I won't subject myself to verbal abuse. If you violate my boundary I will leave the conversation.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

“The only person educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change.”  Carl Rogers

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

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twistybobcatpretzel

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2017, 03:48:18 AM »
That's exactly what I thought I was doing.

I think he definitely pulled the wool over the therapist's eyes, and the next therapist I go to will be mines alone. 

Thanks again for helping me clarify my thinking on this.

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coyote

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #7 on: May 19, 2017, 08:14:03 AM »
no problem, I definitely agree he buffaloed the T. You are right to get your own T next time. Take care of your side of the road and let H do the same.
How people treat you is their karma; how you react is yours.
 Wayne Dyer

“The only person educated is the one who has learned how to learn and change.”  Carl Rogers

The problem is not the problem. The problem is your attitude about the problem. Do you understand?
Capt. Jack Sparrow

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noregrets

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #8 on: May 23, 2017, 02:47:37 PM »
Twenty-four years before my lightbulb moment and when we had been married less than a year, my husband and I saw a marriage therapist. I thought from the beginning that he sided with my husband and bought all his BS.  One of our first issues discussed was now controlling my husband was.  In a later session, I told the therapist how my husband watched from the window as I backed out of the driveway and called me immediately to chastise me for not coming to a complete stop before changing from reverse to drive.  My husband grinned sheepishly and the therapist grinned back and said, "Now, Allen, we've talked about that." Then they had a good chuckle while I sat there and fumed. I've always thought that the therapist's attitude validated my husband's behavior for years. I thought recently about contacting him and letting him know how very wrong he was, then I remembered he's probably long retired.

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twistybobcatpretzel

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Re: Medium chill or "stonewalling"?
« Reply #9 on: May 23, 2017, 04:38:52 PM »
Wow, noregrets, that would make me so angry. 

I can see how couples therapy doesn't work with these kinds of people.