Well let me start by saying I am NOT a therapist yet. I haven't started nor completed my Masters but I will happily tell you a few things that have
been shown and give you a suggestion or two when searching for a therapist.
It is very fashionable to hate Sigmund Freud but soemthing that some people fail to see is the amazing framework he laid down for students like myself
and therapists. Believe it or not this is the zone in therapy I will be specializing in upon obtaining my Masters. I want to work with people from
11-20 or so because often times when emotional, physical, or sexual abuse manifests itself during these periods as the child has a tendency to bury it
at the younger ages. Now what Freud made was what the ever-famous stages of psychosexual development. What many don't know is that when Freud said
'sex' in his native tongue it was a bit of a misinterpretation. Now regardless, he did still do a hell of alot of coke and smoked like a freight
train but he laid out a concept we still use today.
In each stage of childhood from 0 years all the way to puberty and beyond we are in our formative years. In each stage if you do some emotional trauma
to the child those areas he or she is attempting to develop can suffer greatly. The stage you would have been in is stage 4 or the Latent Stage.
This is characterzied by your period to learn about culture, developing friendships and starting to form what you value and hold dear.
This is a rough shortened paraphrasing of the following link (should you like to take a glance)
Anyway two things 'can' happen when someone is abused during a formative stage.
1. the development crucial to that time in your life can be damaged. As you can see, although his stages are not perfect, the word that pops out is
freindship. Things of this manner can cause you to bury painful memories down and knowing that the ugliness is inside your brain somewhere, you begin
to look only outward. That isn't a bad thing because it is never good to be too inwardly focused but if you take in all this information and never
process it by looking inwards then you have your missed stage.
2. One of the things that has been discovered in the past decade or so is that in a case like yours a second process get's stunted. That process is
emotional maturity. You obviously moved on and went through school and physically you may have turned out fine but again lacking that inner focus at
that age, part of your emotional maturity could have been haulted and you may not have developed it yet.
Now that may be enough but there is but a third problem in your specific case. This was done by someone you trusted and in a vulnerable state.
3. Whenever a crime is commited or an atrocity is commited to you it is a terrible thing. When it is done by a trusted member of the family or a good
friend then you make the problem more complex because now you subconsciously can begin to wonder if you can trust these people around you anymore.
Now I know this all sounds terribly dismal but trust me there is a super bright ray of light with all of this. I am again saying I am not a therapist
but if some of this is true about you or when you DO discover all the truth about it that is the HARDEST step next to admitting the problem. After
that it get's so much easier.
so think about this...
Have you admitted it yet? (points to your brave thread) Yes you have and I salute you for it
Have you discovered the truths yet? (I think you are starting to)
Do you have a support system in place outside of therapy? (very important) Well look around you at these people here...I would say a BIG yes :-p
Welcome to the beginning of healing my friend. I promsie you nothing I just was sarcastic or rude. It was indeed hopeful and honest. The therapy you
attain WILL be difficult and rocky at times but just picture what awaits you when you are through.
Now for the suggestions...
There are probably a good 50 different types of psychology training and what may help you save time and money is to figure out what you want to
correct or assist in your life. So here is a couple of types of therapists you can look for depending on what you wish to reslove. Feel free to ask
them the school of psychology they follow.
If you have bad traits or negative self talk or a certain activity or conversation that keeps getting you in trouble it would be beneficial to search
for a Cognitive-Behavioral Psychologist for that.
They can be rare and hard to find but if the issue is more of a loniliness and you can't really figure out what you are feeling (confusion and such)
I would try to find an Existential Therapist
There are alot but feel free to also ask them if they specialize in anything.
Well good luck and I wish you absolutely nothing more than the best.
EDIT: FORGET AN IMPORTANT LINK
This is a listing of APA recognized psychologists in the US. It is searchable by location, zip code, and radius
APA Psychology Finder
[edit on 21-8-2008 by KyoZero]