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I've messed up the best relationship I've ever been in. Losing hope of ever being able to have a healthy relationship


Looktothesky
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I'm sorry in advance, this is very long.  

I was in a relationship with a very special person for almost a year up until a few weeks ago.  She is the most thoughtful, most kind, most intelligent person and most attractive person I have ever been with.  For a while it really felt like we were growing something beautiful.  I've never felt so comfortable being emotionally open and vulnerable with a partner.  That is admittedly a big problem for me, being an open communicator, so I cherished that.  But apparently not enough because eventually I fell into my old ways.

I have problems with communication that make it hard for me to ask for what I need in a relationship and also to speak my mind when something is bothering me. This was essentially the reason for the breakdown of my previous 6+ year relationship. I've worked on it over the years, and I've progressed a little.  But it is still a big problem for me and I need to get a handle on it. Going into a new relationship, I made it a point to be mindful of the patterns I get into so that I can try to not let it happen. I did well for a while, but I guess eventually I slipped back into old habits.  If something is bothering me and I get too anxious to speak up, I can tend to just keep it inside.  Then it sometimes comes out later as passive-aggression and then eventually an admission of what was bothering me. I really hate myself for being this way. 

I had never introduced her to my family, and that became a big issue for us.  For some background, my dad died in 2021.  My family has never been very close and since my dad passed it feels like we have just drifted even further apart.  This lack of togetherness has been a source of deep pain for me over the years, but since my dad passed it feels like the pain is only getting worse. I don't know how to relate to my mom, and spending time with her fills me with a sense of guilt, sadness and anxiety. I barely ever talk to my brother or sister.  It feels like this big gaping void in my life. I feel self-conscious and embarrassed about the total lack of emotional intimacy in my family, so I kept putting off an introduction.  She would bring it up every once in a while, and I'd say I'd make it happen by a certain time.  But for whatever reason I just could not get past whatever was stopping me, so it never happened. Understandably, a person can only put up with so much of that.

A few weekends ago, she was going to join me at my mom's house for a meal.  Leading up to that weekend I had a very rough week at work.  I was really looking forward to spending quality time with her and finally introducing her to my family on Sunday. On Thursday she said she had a rough day so I asked if there was any way I could help her. I offered to come over and bring food or something, but she said she was ok. I think because of the anxiety I was dealing with from work I took that personally for some stupid reason.  So I figured I'd just wait until she reached out to me to spend time together instead of letting her know - "hey, I've had a tough week and I'd really like to spend time with you this weekend" - which, as she told me after the fact, is what I should have done. Instead of doing that, I just kept it all in and waited until Saturday morning to ask if she wanted to spend time together. I knew she had plans with her girl friends Saturday night but I was hoping we could spend some time in the afternoon, but she had already offered to help her best friend with something. 

By then I was already deep in my head with the notion that she was avoiding me, trying to get out of meeting my family, etc. I told her I felt like she was avoiding me or something.  She apologized and said that wasn't the case, and I put off responding for a couple of hours. Partly out of anxiety for what to say and partly out of passive-aggression because I was upset that she wasn't making time for me, despite me not making the effort to make it happen, because I'm an idiot. I guess I felt like it was important for me to spend time with her before we went to my mom's house. I was anxious about the meeting and being able to spend some quality time with just me and her would've made me feel more at ease going into it.  Which I felt was important because I knew she was a little anxious about meeting my family, so I didn't want to add to that.  By Sunday morning I just wasn't feeling comfortable with the situation so we just didn't do the meal at my mom's.  My ex was understandably very hurt and confused by this and the next day we broke up after a long discussion.

I'm trying hard not to hate myself for the way that I am. But it's hard not to when I look back and see how I hurt someone who meant so much to me.  It makes me question my own heart.  Like if she meant so much to me why would I treat her like this? I know that is not what love looks like, so how can I say that I love her, even if I feel that I do?

I'm trying hard to hold out hope that if I put in the effort I can improve my behavior and one day have a healthy and fulfilling relationship with somebody I love.  That's the one thing I want most in life is to have a partnership based on trust, communication and love.  And I felt that more in this relationship than I ever did in my previous one. What hope is there for me if I had that, and then just screwed it all up?  She would often say how much she loved that I was emotionally intelligent and empathetic, and I think when I'm at my best I can be that way.  But I've always had these awful setbacks that make me feel very emotionally unintelligent and selfish

We were talking a bit this weekend about exchanging stuff we have at each others' places.  We got to talking about how much we miss each other. Maybe I shouldn't have said this, but I was feeling very vulnerable.  I told her I hope that one day maybe things can be different for us and we can try again.  She said that she will hold that hope in her heart.  I don't know exactly what that means.  I want to hold out hope that maybe one day things can be different for us.  But then what happens if I hold out that hope for however long and it just doesn't go that way?  It doesn't seem likely that it will. I just can't shake the feeling that I messed up what could have been such a special thing.  How am I supposed to live with that?

I understand this post probably calls for some harsh truths, but please don't be too harsh.  I feel totally alone and I feel like I'm slowly losing hope...I made an appointment with my therapist for this week and I'm going to commit to regularly seeing them and hopefully getting on a new medication for anxiety.  I can't keep going like this.

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I'm glad you're going to start seeing a therapist. You have some kind of major wall that makes you want to avoid intimate relationships. If you want one you're going to have to figure out a way to take that wall down. A therapist will be excellent for that.

As for your ex, don't hold onto hope for a future with her, at least not for the next while. That could impede your progress. You need to get emotionally healthy for you, not so your ex will take you back. Otherwise you'll fall back into the same pattern and possibly hurt her again. 

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3 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

I'm glad you're going to start seeing a therapist. You have some kind of major wall that makes you want to avoid intimate relationships. If you want one you're going to have to figure out a way to take that wall down. A therapist will be excellent for that.

As for your ex, don't hold onto hope for a future with her, at least not for the next while. That could impede your progress. You need to get emotionally healthy for you, not so your ex will take you back. Otherwise you'll fall back into the same pattern and possibly hurt her again. 

Yes, I always knew I had a bit of a wall.  But this whole experience has made me realize it's a much bigger problem than I was willing to accept. I've been dealing with social anxiety since I was teenager.  I used to skip lunch every day in high school because I was too nervous to try and sit with someone.  I never really told my parents about the extent of that so I guess I didn't get the help I needed.  I was able to come out of my shell a little bit when I went to college.  But being out in the real world I think has put me back in my shell quite a bit.  I've always felt less than the people around me in some undefinable way, like I'll never be a 'normal person'. 

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Since she too is hopefully that both of you can resume a relationship, when you see her next time, tell her the truth about everything you've written in your post.  Don't omit anything.  Be very forthright and honest yet very tactful and considerate.  Tell her that you realize you need to work on your communication skills.  I think there were misunderstandings along the way and hopefully once you have a lengthy, very lucid and sincere discussion with her, you can clear the air and she can perceive your effort to make amends.  Also, apologize sincerely for your missteps.  Hopefully, you can salvage the relationship and all hope is not lost. 

Keep working on yourself and with practice, your new communication style will become habitual. 

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7 hours ago, Looktothesky said:

We got to talking about how much we miss each other. Maybe I shouldn't have said this, but I was feeling very vulnerable.  I told her I hope that one day maybe things can be different for us and we can try again.  She said that she will hold that hope in her heart.  I don't know exactly what that means.  I want to hold out hope that maybe one day things can be different for us.  But then what happens if I hold out that hope for however long and it just doesn't go that way?  It doesn't seem likely that it will. I just can't shake the feeling that I messed up what could have been such a special thing.  How am I supposed to live with that?

I understand this post probably calls for some harsh truths, but please don't be too harsh.  I feel totally alone and I feel like I'm slowly losing hope...I made an appointment with my therapist for this week and I'm going to commit to regularly seeing them and hopefully getting on a new medication for anxiety.

 

It sounds like you've got some issue's that you need to address and maybe you just weren't so ready to be in a relationship at this time... you think?

I suggest you not kick yourself too hard.  We all mess things up now & then. And hey, no one is truly 'normal' 😉 .

Yes, for sure, get in for some therapy and keep at it. ( When I hit bottom years ago, I attended it for abt 4 years. One on one and group).  Yes, It did help.  Of course, I still have my issue's ( eg underlying anxiety), but I am actually able to 'function' a little better nowadays.  My therapist made me realize, due to constant challenges, I eventually hit mental & emotional exhaustion. I learned better coping skills, etc..  I tried to date a few more times- which failed 😕 .  So, I have come to accept I can't do it anymore.  I have 'nothing to give'.  I don't have that 'energy' or tolerance expected.  Relationships do take a lot out of you, especially if you've already got some deep rooted issue's.

As mentioned, do not expect anything with your ex.  you've got a ways to go yet.  So, do remain focused on yourself.  Not, if or when things may happen again with her.  Expect nothing anymore.  Work on accepting what is and move on.  And please don't accept some sort of friendship with her.. As I explained to an ex once, when he wanted us to remain as friends, I said NO.  We crossed that line and it was extremely hard to 'go backwards' 😕 .  For me it was either all or nothing. ( Plus it helps one get over them easier & faster-- less you know the better)  😉 .

So, just be done now, with everything.. work on accepting all and healing yourself for a good while. I learned to journal my thoughts & things I wanted to say , either venting or explanations etc. Is another good way to 'get it out'. Also consider other interests... get lost in your music, take up a hobby etc.  Trying to keep busy is helpful.

And try to be easy on yourself... you've had a previous relationship and now this one.  Things don't always work out. I know it sucks! But we live & we learn. You tried and maybe you just weren't all that ready & able yet.

 

So, take some down time and work through your challenges.  Won't hurt.  Good luck 🙂 

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7 hours ago, Looktothesky said:

  ..I made an appointment with my therapist for this week and I'm going to commit to regularly seeing them and hopefully getting on a new medication for anxiety.

This is a great place to start.  Keep in mind that good communication is not about TMI or emotion dumping and relationships are not therapy.

All you need to do is be clear. For example "I'm not close to my family, after my father died" is fine. 

No one is going to break up with someone because of family introductions, so that's really not the issue. 

Also claiming you want to see someone "because you had a rough week" is unnecessary. It's depressing. Just ask them to get together and enjoy each other's presence.

It's possible you could be doing too much talking and being vulnerable and so on. It's very draining for a relationship when one person always has a problem or is always talking about their problems.

Better management of your physical and mental health would be a good idea. In addition to therapy, get a check-up, get some tests done. Make sure you have a clean bill of health. Make improvements in your lifestyle. For example quitting bad habits, getting fit, better nutrition and so on.

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8 hours ago, Looktothesky said:

Yes, I always knew I had a bit of a wall.  But this whole experience has made me realize it's a much bigger problem than I was willing to accept. I've been dealing with social anxiety since I was teenager.  I used to skip lunch every day in high school because I was too nervous to try and sit with someone.  I never really told my parents about the extent of that so I guess I didn't get the help I needed.  I was able to come out of my shell a little bit when I went to college.  But being out in the real world I think has put me back in my shell quite a bit.  I've always felt less than the people around me in some undefinable way, like I'll never be a 'normal person'. 

As someone who also has suffered and still does from social anxiety, and as someone who tends to value my independence and fears talking about my needs, feelings, in my relationship, I often tend to bottle things up, interpret things and get paranoid about my partner's attitudes, moods, comments, etc...

I thought there was something "wrong" with me, but this is not entirely true.  I think it's interesting to try to understand the attachment style you have (possibly https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-dismissive-avoidant-attachment-5218213).  The fear you have about talking to your parents about your fears really could explain some of your behaviours. 

You are not responsible for your emotions, but your are responsible for your actions.

By understanding how your mind works and sometimes "tricks" you, you can take a step back and make little adjustments in your actions.

You're halfway there, since you realize yourself that you have a tendency for passive agressive actions. 

 

 

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4 hours ago, SooSad33 said:

Yes, for sure, get in for some therapy and keep at it. ( When I hit bottom years ago, I attended it for abt 4 years. One on one and group).  Yes, It did help.  Of course, I still have my issue's ( eg underlying anxiety), but I am actually able to 'function' a little better nowadays.  My therapist made me realize, due to constant challenges, I eventually hit mental & emotional exhaustion. I learned better coping skills, etc..  I tried to date a few more times- which failed 😕 .  So, I have come to accept I can't do it anymore.  I have 'nothing to give'.  I don't have that 'energy' or tolerance expected.  Relationships do take a lot out of you, especially if you've already got some deep rooted issue's.

Thank you for sharing your persepctive.  That is a fear of mine, coming to accept that I just can't be in a relationship.  Was that hard for you to accept?

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4 hours ago, Wiseman2 said:

This is a great place to start.  Keep in mind that good communication is not about TMI or emotion dumping and relationships are not therapy.

All you need to do is be clear. For example "I'm not close to my family, after my father died" is fine. 

No one is going to break up with someone because of family introductions, so that's really not the issue. 

Also claiming you want to see someone "because you had a rough week" is unnecessary. It's depressing. Just ask them to get together and enjoy each other's presence.

It's possible you could be doing too much talking and being vulnerable and so on. It's very draining for a relationship when one person always has a problem or is always talking about their problems.

Better management of your physical and mental health would be a good idea. In addition to therapy, get a check-up, get some tests done. Make sure you have a clean bill of health. Make improvements in your lifestyle. For example quitting bad habits, getting fit, better nutrition and so on.

Thank you.  It is definitely not a case of doing too much talking/being vulnerable.  She brought up that it's hard to know where I'm at a lot because I just don't bring those things up as often as I should.  I guess the situation from a few weeks ago I was a little too vulnerable.  I was a little panicked and dealing with a lot of anxiety from work.

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If I may be permitted to some thinking out loud in my own thread:

Another thing that makes this breakup (and the last one) so hard for me is that I live a pretty isolated life. I have friends from school that I’m still in touch with and see multiple times a year, but they all live hours away. After college I sort of stopped making the effort to make friends (social anxiety, don’t know where to start outside of the bubble of university, etc). So when something like this happens I just feel totally alone. And then I start feeling a little jealous knowing that my former partner has a solid support system of friends and family that they can lean on.

I guess the short of it is that I really need to get help and take it seriously.

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6 hours ago, sunday_luthier said:

As someone who also has suffered and still does from social anxiety, and as someone who tends to value my independence and fears talking about my needs, feelings, in my relationship, I often tend to bottle things up, interpret things and get paranoid about my partner's attitudes, moods, comments, etc...

I thought there was something "wrong" with me, but this is not entirely true.  I think it's interesting to try to understand the attachment style you have (possibly https://www.verywellmind.com/what-is-dismissive-avoidant-attachment-5218213).  The fear you have about talking to your parents about your fears really could explain some of your behaviours. 

You are not responsible for your emotions, but your are responsible for your actions.

By understanding how your mind works and sometimes "tricks" you, you can take a step back and make little adjustments in your actions.

You're halfway there, since you realize yourself that you have a tendency for passive agressive actions. 

 

 

So I took some quiz and I got fearful avoidant. Obviously I’ll take that with a grain of salt since it’s just some random quiz, but I think that makes more sense for me as I don’t necessarily actively avoid romantic relationships. I have a strong desire for connection but get a little, well, fearful when I’m in them.

I’m trying to think about what could have possibly happened when I was a kid to wind up like this. My parents made sure we had everything we needed.
 

Although now that I’m typing this…I’m thinking of memories where I’d overhear my parents talking about something, fill in the blanks in my head, worry that they didn’t love us anymore, and eventually ask them if they did. Seems sort of significant.

 

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11 minutes ago, Looktothesky said:

I have a strong desire for connection but get a little, well, fearful when I’m in them.

One thing I've found that helps me a lot is asking myself what exactly is it I'm afraid of. So, what are you afraid of? Getting "hurt"? Hurt how, specifically? Or of losing your freedom or sense of self identity? Pinpoint what terribly frightening thing you believe will happen if you act in a loving way toward your partner.

Definitely something to explore with your therapist.

Oh, and don't cancel the appointment. Don't be afraid of getting better or of facing your fears.

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12 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

One thing I've found that helps me a lot is asking myself what exactly is it I'm afraid of. So, what are you afraid of? Getting "hurt"? Hurt how, specifically? Or of losing your freedom or sense of self identity? Pinpoint what terribly frightening thing you believe will happen if you act in a loving way toward your partner.

Definitely something to explore with your therapist.

Oh, and don't cancel the appointment. Don't be afraid of getting better or of facing your fears.


I will definitely not be canceling. I have been doing therapy off and on for years. I’ll always get to a point where things are going ok and I’ll stop going for a while. I should know better by now that I need to be consistent with it. I’ve got nothing to lose, so I need to stick with it. I know it has helped me. I’ll never forget in my previous relationship, my partner told me she could tell how much I’ve improved and grown into a different person over the years. That meant a lot to me. So I need to keep believing that change is possible.

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I see you take responsibility for the breakup but then make several excuses for the way you acted.

 Not introducing your gf to your family tells her that you don't think she is good enough or you are embarrassed to have them meet her. It might not be true but put yourself in her shoes and see how you would feel.

 Read your post again and you will see the one thing you didn't want to happen happened because you were trying so hard to stop it from happening.  You were unsure, insecure and didn't trust her to be understanding. There is no undo button for this but you can work on fixing it instead of giving up. 

 Get into therapy for sure but for yourself, not to win her back but make sure she knows you are doing some serious work on yourself.  Sounds like she wants to try again but don't do it because you miss each other, do it because you both feel like the problems have solutions you both can offer.

  Put in the hard work, be brutally honest with yourself and have faith in her.

Lost

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1 minute ago, lostandhurt said:

I see you take responsibility for the breakup but then make several excuses for the way you acted.

 Not introducing your gf to your family tells her that you don't think she is good enough or you are embarrassed to have them meet her. It might not be true but put yourself in her shoes and see how you would feel.

 Read your post again and you will see the one thing you didn't want to happen happened because you were trying so hard to stop it from happening.  You were unsure, insecure and didn't trust her to be understanding. There is no undo button for this but you can work on fixing it instead of giving up. 

 Get into therapy for sure but for yourself, not to win her back but make sure she knows you are doing some serious work on yourself.  Sounds like she wants to try again but don't do it because you miss each other, do it because you both feel like the problems have solutions you both can offer.

  Put in the hard work, be brutally honest with yourself and have faith in her.

Lost

Yes, that is something we talked about, how it felt for her to be in this position. I don’t mean to be making excuses. I behaved poorly.  I messed up in a big way.

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2 hours ago, Looktothesky said:

I’ll always get to a point where things are going ok and I’ll stop going for a while.

Why do you do this?

If you were exercising and eating healthy and got into great physical health would you decide you didn't need to exercise or eat healthy anymore yet expect to stay in excellent physical health? 

Whatever you were doing, you didn't stick with it long enough for it to become habit. You slid back into your fearful, self destructive actions.

I'm curious to know the answer to the question I asked earlier. What exactly is it you're afraid of in love relationships? What are you trying to prevent by being emotionally unavailable?

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2 minutes ago, boltnrun said:

Why do you do this?

If you were exercising and eating healthy and got into great physical health would you decide you didn't need to exercise or eat healthy anymore yet expect to stay in excellent physical health? 

Whatever you were doing, you didn't stick with it long enough for it to become habit. You slid back into your fearful, self destructive actions.

I'm curious to know the answer to the question I asked earlier. What exactly is it you're afraid of in love relationships? What are you trying to prevent by being emotionally unavailable?

Sometimes it’s been money-related, but my new therapist (my old one retired) is covered by my insurance so that will not be a big issue. Sometimes I would only be able to get an appointment during the work day and I get worried about missing too much work. Luckily my new therapist has much more availability including weekends. Sometimes I’ll forget to schedule a new appointment and then just kind of brush it off. I know that none of these are valid excuses.

And in regard to your question. I guess I’m afraid that if I’m totally open and vulnerable about who I am, the other person will not like what they see. I’m worried that if I speak my mind about what I need, or something that might be bothering me in a relationship, that I’d be being selfish. Overall I guess I’m afraid of not being enough and being left behind.

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6 hours ago, Looktothesky said:

Thank you for sharing your persepctive.  That is a fear of mine, coming to accept that I just can't be in a relationship.  Was that hard for you to accept?

No, because I knew myself, how rough I was.  I've come to realize a lot of things.. eg, what is expected in relationships and I sit back now & see it so many times with other relationships as well, due to the wear & tear each partner has endured over their years.

Some just can't do it.. and what ticks me off is those who are out there messing other people up, when they already know all they want is an occasional fling- which very often is leading the other person on...to nothing 😕 .  This is where people get hurt.  And I want no part of that anymore!  So, yeah, I already know my own issue's and that I can't 'give' what's expected.... so, I don't mind keeping to myself and just having minimal amt of friends etc.

I have my pets, my family, my crafts.  

Life is an experience I say.  We need to come to realize some things and learn.  We need to learn our own tolerances. We need to learn when we're being used or abused.  What we will or will not tolerate.. you get all kinds 😉 .

Some lack in self respect, accepting the mental anguish of those around them and end up weak - or are weak to begin with- and need to grow a backbone.  

For you, I do feel you will come across a decent partner again..in time.  I just suggest you keep on with therapy and get yourself back to good. 🙂 . Give things time. And don't date when you already know you've got some issue's. 

Or else, this is how you end up hurt or hurting other's, which isn't fair... and it just keeps on getting complicated & more challenging - to where it becomes too much on you.

Like I said, with a relationship, comes expectations, communication, respect, trust and your energy.

So for now, just focus on yourself.... you've got lots of time to date again, when you do feel better than you do now.  🙂 

 

 

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1 hour ago, Looktothesky said:

Sometimes it’s been money-related, but my new therapist (my old one retired) is covered by my insurance so that will not be a big issue. Sometimes I would only be able to get an appointment during the work day and I get worried about missing too much work. Luckily my new therapist has much more availability including weekends. Sometimes I’ll forget to schedule a new appointment and then just kind of brush it off. I know that none of these are valid excuses.

And in regard to your question. I guess I’m afraid that if I’m totally open and vulnerable about who I am, the other person will not like what they see. I’m worried that if I speak my mind about what I need, or something that might be bothering me in a relationship, that I’d be being selfish. Overall I guess I’m afraid of not being enough and being left behind.

That's really good personal insight. Your therapist can help you to see that everyone has things about them that are imperfect, but in a love relationship we learn to not only to overlook some things but accept them and even find them endearing. 

My husband, for example, ALWAYS ordered the BLT when we went out to eat. No matter where it was, if there was a BLT on the menu he'd order it. I used to get annoyed because I thought he should be willing to try new things, especially when we were at a restaurant that had so many better options. But he liked BLTs. I came to find it a cute quirk and would even point out if a place has a BLT on the menu. He also always wore pajamas to bed. I started buying them for him. Little things like that.

You may have quirks and maybe even some things that are mildly annoying, but you need to accept those things in yourself before you can be a good partner. And if there are things you want to change your therapist can help with that as well. But you need to be consistent with your therapy.

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3 hours ago, boltnrun said:

That's really good personal insight. Your therapist can help you to see that everyone has things about them that are imperfect, but in a love relationship we learn to not only to overlook some things but accept them and even find them endearing. 

My husband, for example, ALWAYS ordered the BLT when we went out to eat. No matter where it was, if there was a BLT on the menu he'd order it. I used to get annoyed because I thought he should be willing to try new things, especially when we were at a restaurant that had so many better options. But he liked BLTs. I came to find it a cute quirk and would even point out if a place has a BLT on the menu. He also always wore pajamas to bed. I started buying them for him. Little things like that.

You may have quirks and maybe even some things that are mildly annoying, but you need to accept those things in yourself before you can be a good partner. And if there are things you want to change your therapist can help with that as well. But you need to be consistent with your therapy.

Thank you. Another part I forgot to add is that I still feel a decent amount of guilt and shame for being an introvert. For a long time I thought it was wrong of me to be that way, and that if I just tried harder I could be extroverted. I realize now that I’m just the way I am, which is the way many people are, and that’s ok.
 

But if I’m with someone more extroverted (like she is) I feel a lingering insecurity, like the other person will get bored of me. Or meet someone new while being out somewhere. I know that different people get different things out of relationships and I understand that these two differing types could actually compliment each other. But I still struggle with a feeling of inferiority.

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13 hours ago, Looktothesky said:

 it’s been money-related, but my new therapist is covered by my insurance.

Does your insurance cover doctors visits? Have you had a complete evaluation of your physical and mental health along with some tests? Sometimes talk therapy is the best adjunct to dealing with underlying mood or anxiety issues that seems to be holding you back and seem undertreated.

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4 hours ago, Wiseman2 said:

Does your insurance cover doctors visits? Have you had a complete evaluation of your physical and mental health along with some tests? Sometimes talk therapy is the best adjunct to dealing with underlying mood or anxiety issues that seems to be holding you back and seem undertreated.

No I have not had my physical health evaluated in quite some time or had any tests done. I know it’s stupid, but I get nervous about what I’d find. I should know better, seeing as my dad died of cancer that could have been caught much sooner if he actually went to the doctor regularly. What exactly would I need to ask for? Would this just be a standard physical check up?

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5 minutes ago, Looktothesky said:

No I have not had my physical health evaluated in quite some time or had any tests done. I know it’s stupid, but I get nervous about what I’d find. I should know better, seeing as my dad died of cancer that could have been caught much sooner if he actually went to the doctor regularly. What exactly would I need to ask for? Would this just be a standard physical check up?

I understand about family history and nerves but information is power.  Yes start with a well check -a standard physical.  I have bloodwork annually for cholestorol, blood pressure, iron levels, D levels --all the standard stuff included.  I have a physical exam by the doctor at that time, we discuss any health changes, mental health changes (pretty standard to discuss given the pandemic) -she updates me on what vaccines I need or need boosters for, and whether I need additional vitamins or to stop certain supplements.  Because she sees me annually for years now she knows me which is also key -the context of your doctor knowing you and listening to you is key.

I have a family history of certain issues so I believe it's better to know just like I did genetic counseling and bloodwork when I was pregnant.  Knowledge is power.  I've had my colonoscopy, bone density test, etc since I am now 56.  I get annual mammograms and ultrasounds and skin checks (more for women I know -the mammo).  It scares me every single time.  Every time especially since my cousin died young of cancer.  I do monthly exams too.

  It's a pain in the behind -the annual doctor and dental visits and vision. The numerous calls to doctors and the annual visits for my son.   Because of that I've saved a number of my teeth (early care), discovered I needed ultrasounds in addition to mammograms, that I needed certain supplements but not others, and that I have to watch my cholesterol and blood pressure.  

It means if I do get sick I know who to call, I have an online patient portal with my entire history so whoever sees me has a baseline knowledge of me and my general health.  I've been going annually my whole life I think with few years missed.  But I didn't always see a dentist regularly enough and boy did I pay for that -could have prevented so much pain and emergency visits.  

Start now.  IMO.

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26 minutes ago, Batya33 said:

I understand about family history and nerves but information is power.  Yes start with a well check -a standard physical.  I have bloodwork annually for cholestorol, blood pressure, iron levels, D levels --all the standard stuff included.  I have a physical exam by the doctor at that time, we discuss any health changes, mental health changes (pretty standard to discuss given the pandemic) -she updates me on what vaccines I need or need boosters for, and whether I need additional vitamins or to stop certain supplements.  Because she sees me annually for years now she knows me which is also key -the context of your doctor knowing you and listening to you is key.

I have a family history of certain issues so I believe it's better to know just like I did genetic counseling and bloodwork when I was pregnant.  Knowledge is power.  I've had my colonoscopy, bone density test, etc since I am now 56.  I get annual mammograms and ultrasounds and skin checks (more for women I know -the mammo).  It scares me every single time.  Every time especially since my cousin died young of cancer.  I do monthly exams too.

  It's a pain in the behind -the annual doctor and dental visits and vision. The numerous calls to doctors and the annual visits for my son.   Because of that I've saved a number of my teeth (early care), discovered I needed ultrasounds in addition to mammograms, that I needed certain supplements but not others, and that I have to watch my cholesterol and blood pressure.  

It means if I do get sick I know who to call, I have an online patient portal with my entire history so whoever sees me has a baseline knowledge of me and my general health.  I've been going annually my whole life I think with few years missed.  But I didn't always see a dentist regularly enough and boy did I pay for that -could have prevented so much pain and emergency visits.  

Start now.  IMO.

This is very helpful. Thank you. I’m going to need to see my doctor after my therapy appointment to see about trying a new medication, so I will try to start there. Knowledge is power indeed, I don’t know why i choose willful ignorance instead. I guess it’s like you said, all of the phone calls and appointments. But also like you said, worth it in the long run. 

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