We all have times in our lives when we are restless, when our sleep is difficult, and what I mean by difficult, I mean falling asleep and waking up often or unable to fall sleep, mind working overtime.
I know I do, but what is more difficult is to understand is why?
We can be living our life, getting on with what needs to be done, kids need to be ready for school, we have to sort them out, then we have to get ourselves to work, or maybe we don’t have kids. We may be alone, and we have slept badly and we have to get sorted to be out in time for work, our energy levels are low and yet we have to let the world see we are our normal open, happy selves when inside we want to cry, curl up or just go home, close the doors and lock the world out for a bit.
So why do we do this? What is it that’s happening that’s making us like this?
I believe, when we are in this space it’s hard to explain to ourselves never mind our family or our colleagues, so let me give you an example:-
Meet Joseph, so 3 weeks ago Joseph met his old school friend James. They had not seen each other since leaving school over 10 years ago, James looked a little down, so they went for a coffee and James told Joesph how his wife had left him for his best friend 3 years ago, and he hasn’t seen his kids properly since and she’s taking him to court for everything.
He then describes the destruction to himself and his life, Joseph is shocked, James was a big strong happy guy at school, the girls loved him and the guys wanted to be him so this was quite a shock.
After James finished talking, he asked Joseph how he was and Joseph told him, I’m good life is OK thank you, they both left saying they would meet again.
Joseph went back to work, a little quieter, however he could not shake James out of his mind, later at home Joseph’s girlfriend asked if he was OK so he said yeah and began to tell her, her phone rang she picked it up, it was her friend from work and she had to take it ……. When she returned to Joseph she began to tell him about an incident at work and so Joseph didn’t bring James up again.
So going to bed Joseph tried to sleep, he would fall asleep, then wake up, he tossed and turned, but it was not about James he was thinking, it was about when he was 14.
So the following day, Joseph went to work as usual, everyone was getting on with work, someone asked Joseph how is evening was? He said yea it was OK, what else could he say? How can he tell his colleague, “oh I hardly slept, I couldn’t stop thinking about my old friend and it brought up stuff from being a kid” no we don’t do that, we just say “yeah it was OK” or “yeah I’m fine thank you”
So we carry on, we go home from work, we feel out of sorts, not only are we tired but we are now feeling low, we don’t know why, we just know we don’t feel right. Our partners could return from work say something inoffensive and now we hear something else in what they are saying, so a simple, “hey have you got dinner tonight?” can sound like “why have you not prepared dinner? You’re so lazy” and so now we have become sensitive to small things.
These are now causing issues between you and your partner, your work colleagues because you’re not fun anymore, you can’t be bothered with hobbies you had, like your work football team meet ups, or drinks with friends.
So why? Why has this happened?
Let’s have a look at what happened to Joseph, he met with James, he heard his awful story, he went home sad, he couldn’t sleep but his dreams are not of James plight, but of when he was 14 years old.
So when Joseph was 14 or 15 years old his world changed, his dad left home, his mum was constantly crying, dad only came round once or twice a month. Dad met someone else, she moved in they had another baby.
Joseph and his older sister now hardly saw dad, mum had a few boyfriends but none that lasted or where not that good, she hardly bothered with herself now, she went to work, sat in her room, didn’t come out very often, the kids had to feed themselves, Joseph’s older sister left home a year later to move in with her boyfriend.
So when Joseph applied for university he applied as far away as possible so he could move out and live in halls.
So here we can see a chance meeting, with an old friend triggered lots of old feelings and emotions for Joseph, none of which he could explain to his friends who began to withdraw from him, nor could he explain to his girlfriend, who was now losing patients with him because he comes home from work and goes straight to his room, but more importantly he didn’t understand.
So if you are familiar with anything here, or can recognize some of it, then you may have triggers that you’re just not aware of, that could start to unravel, well that is what counseling/therapy can help you with.
So to the question, counselling does it work ? i can tell you in my experience as a counsellor but also as a client it certainly does, but to the question, do I need it?
I would ask myself what have I got to lose, an hour of my time to say nah not for me or yes I’m glad I did this.
WHY NOT DROP ME A MESSAGE, LETS SEE IF WE CAN WORK TOGETHER