advertisement
Question
Posted by: Lucy | 2012/01/24

Worried about my girlfriend

Hi doc,

My girlfriend starter her own business last year. It is in the industry that she studied, but she has had a long 2year break whilst doing something else. She has a type of social stress, and she has boudry issues- cant let people get too close. Her job requires her to have a close relationship with her clients.

She finds it very very stressfull and since she started her business she has started to creep closer into her hole. She also has alot of anxiety episodes when she gets very busy at work. and pops rescue for that...She at that time also hadnt come out about being gay, and that was an added stress as our house had to be ungay-a-fied when they where to come over. I respected this all and did what was needed to help her feel comfortable. She also has a emotional tummy- when she is upset/ stressed she has no appetit and doesnt really eat. She then went from weighing 62 - now 52kg''s and she is about 1.68m tall.

She started to never want affection, and being intimate became a real issue.

Her mum then heard via via (as in any towns things like this come out as we met people and they talked etc etc) about the two of us, and then ignored her for 9 weeks. after a very rude leaving our hous the day she heard. My girlfriend and I obviously didnt know why she was reacting like that or being so rude. we then found out 9 weeks later when her father came to see her and asked her if what her mum heard was the truth. Her brothers and fathers are very supportive of her sexuality and have unconditional love. the mother didnt even speak to her on christmas either. the father then begged the mother to make contact and she did. they went for coffee in a public place. The mother then said many things including hurtfull word like: youre a disgrace, you should be ashamed, im ashamed, disgusting, im mourning the death of my child, youre not happy. youre not the same person, all i knew of you your whole life is a lie... and that im not welcome in their house they wont accept me. fair enough, all parents response, its quite normal, and time should heal. but. you dont say it out loud to your child. as you can never take those words back when youve dealt with it. it has hurt your child and now what.

She had since then gone into a serious depression, ive done some research, and tried speaking to my mom about it, my family who know im gay and never reacted in any way like her family.

She is experiencing pain- severe stomach cramps, digestive problems, joint pain-wrists, neck, ankles, lower back pain, headaches, she is sick some mornings- says its acid , and salty saliva she thows up.she is very irritable, snaps at me, should i be affectionate she sometimes cringes at that, (and i know its not me) she felt she needed to break up with me as she thinks she will never get through this and will never be ablt to give me what i need in a relationship... we then spoke - amazingly and she said that she does want to spend the rest of her life with me, and shes scared i lose patience with her.

she is also a person with walls, she cant speak- to anyone, if there is a problem, she will either speak and then end up crying and getting so frustrated with i dont know, and says i cant i cant and gets up and walks away, or she just says i cant speak, i cant speak, and then wants to be left alone. she cant sort issues out, she will bury them and then they sit threr and fester. but seriously, she cant speak. she doesnt even know herself what she must say- the words physically cant come out her mouth. (i only learnt all of this about her- and understood what shes been trying to tell me recently) she has told me once- that when she was little her mum on two occasions that she spoke of had left her behind- a. unpacked supermarket shopping, put her siblings in the car, and drove off leaving her to wave at her siblings... and b. they went on a fmaily outing and both parents had left her behind at some stalls next to the road and left her there sitting under the table crying... (they did realise both times they forgot her and came back for her...I am a very emotional affectionate loving person. I talk things out. so its a hard relationship, but ive learnt to adapt- or try to, to not make her feel pushed to speak. but at the same time, if there is no level of pushing she will never talk about anything either.

she now feels ashamed of being gay too, and shes admitted shes depressed, i try and tell her what we need to do to get through this, she doesnt want to see a therapist. (her mum sent her a number of one- but im scared its not a gay friendly one- most likely) she agreed to go only if she gets worse and not better.

So basically i need to know, how to help her, how to speak/ treat her, i do almost everything for her as i fear that she cant handle the preasssure of all things she must do in a day. She has changed her attitude towards me , and is loving etc now... so I think she realises that i am not the enemy and that i love her regardless. ( she has serious rejection issues, and issues with people being dissapointed in her- even when it comes to me, or her friends) she has only let me see the person she really is-in the whole world.

I am her rock, and I need to help her get better, I will eventually get her to a therapist, but baby steps towards that. now i need to knwo how to get her to have less pain - physically, and what sy to her, do for her, what not to say, how can i help her change her negative way of thinking, and maybe help her to be able to start speaking to me, coz this also makes the whole process take so much longer.

Please doc, I need your help....

Not what you were looking for? Try searching again, or ask your own question
Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

yes, it sounds as though she is in a stressful situation and not coping well so far, with features suggesting an anxiety disorder and perhaps a depression too. She would really benefit from seeing a psychologist for assessment and assistance, such as CBT counselling / therapy. Maybe the person she saw before was not only gay-unfriendly, but perhaps chosen by her family to "cure" her of being gay ? If so, no wonder she didn't find it helpful.
I don't know where you are based, but it wwould be adviseable to seek a gay-friendly therapist - that doesn't mean a gay therapist, but just one who is not prejudiced and grinding their own axe !
Indeed seeing a psychologist together for at least some of the sessions would also be useful.
Are there any gay organizations where you are, or within reach of you, who might be able to help you find such a therapist, and offer further support ?
And as m says, she should have a physical checkup to ensure none of her symptoms are related to a physical disorder needing attention

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

5
Our users say:
Posted by: Maria | 2012/01/24

Lucy, the Cybershrink will only see your reply if you start a new post.

It''s really difficult to give answers to your questions without knowing you, your girlfriend and how your interact. There are several different issues here - her work stress, the issue with being gay, her family history... it''s too much to deal with at one time. One also has to walk a fine line between empowering someone, and helping them so much that they end up depending on you and feeling bad about that too.

Can you maybe get her to attend support group meetings, either for depression (contact SADAG) or some gay support group? It might help her to realise she is not the only person with problems. I think the most important thing is to get the depression treated as that makes everything else so much worse.

Maybe find some articles about depression, read them with her, try to make her see that it takes guts and strength to seek help, it''s not an admission of weakness.

Good luck, your''re and awesome partner.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: Lucy | 2012/01/24

Thank you so much for all your reply" s!

I have contacted the orginazation closest to us and they gave me a number they have listed. I will phone him to see what , when etc.

Truth is I cant force her to go just yet, she gets very snappy when she feels like youre trying to put her in a box. So i want to do things slowly. I think the GP is a good Idea. I just want tomknow what i cant do, for now, in the meantime. Am I doing too much? Is there things I should speak to her about/ say to her? I have to do something to get the ball rolling in the right direction. . . i just dont want to say anything that will aggrevate it.

any specific things to say/ make her try do or anything to get her to later agree on going to a psycologist?

- L -

Reply to Lucy
Posted by: XXXX | 2012/01/24

Lucy you are a wonderful person for caring so much and trying so hard to help her. She is lucky to have someone who cares and wants to make everything right for her. You spend your time taking care of her.

I have a husband and he never cares like this about me, no matter what I am going through. When I was depressed and stressed over m terminally ill child, he told me to get over it. Depression is mind over matter &  didn''t see why I couldn''t control my feelings, put on a smile &  get on with life &  taking care of the rest of the family. He didn''t see the need for me to even consider taking antidepressants. And when I underwent major surgery, he left me in theatre &  went off to work. Said if anything happens to me, the hospital has his cell no., so no need for him to wait for me to come out of theatre. He pitched up during the evening visiting hrs to see me. I was in so much pain &  was in tears. He told me to stop it because I will upset people. I must just bear the pain.

Your girlfriend has someone who genuinely cares about her. Please continue to support her. She is going through a difficult patch and seems to be very confused and has been hurt deeply by her mum. Just support her &  show ehr that you care.

Good luck.

Reply to XXXX
Posted by: Maria | 2012/01/24

She is very lucky to have you in her life. As you wisely realise, she needs to see a psychologist to help her deal with all the issues. No professional psychologist should be homophobic. Since you are working towards that goal, first try to get her to see a good GP for a full physical checkup. She sounds ill, and while the physical symptoms might be the result of stress it is important to rule out other reasons for the weight loss etc. The gp can refer her to a psychiatrist / psychologist - maybe she will be more willing to go if she gets referred.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: cybershrink | 2012/01/24

yes, it sounds as though she is in a stressful situation and not coping well so far, with features suggesting an anxiety disorder and perhaps a depression too. She would really benefit from seeing a psychologist for assessment and assistance, such as CBT counselling / therapy. Maybe the person she saw before was not only gay-unfriendly, but perhaps chosen by her family to "cure" her of being gay ? If so, no wonder she didn't find it helpful.
I don't know where you are based, but it wwould be adviseable to seek a gay-friendly therapist - that doesn't mean a gay therapist, but just one who is not prejudiced and grinding their own axe !
Indeed seeing a psychologist together for at least some of the sessions would also be useful.
Are there any gay organizations where you are, or within reach of you, who might be able to help you find such a therapist, and offer further support ?
And as m says, she should have a physical checkup to ensure none of her symptoms are related to a physical disorder needing attention

Reply to cybershrink

Have your say

Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
Thanks for commenting! Your comment will appear on the site shortly.
advertisement