Out of Control Emotions?

 It has been said that if you don’t deal with your emotions, your emotions are going to deal with you. In other words, suppressing emotions like anger, hurt or fear allows those very emotions to rule your interactions with others and dictate your behavior. Unaddressed anger or fear is like an untended grass fire- the emotions spread so quickly and you are soon out of control. If you are avoiding your anger or disappointment, you might be struggling with passivity- a state in which others are easily able to take advantage of you or ignore your needs. The flip side of unaddressed anger is becoming passive-aggressive which is self-sabotaging- or aggressive- hurting others with your words or worse rather than respectfully expressing yourself. If you avoid your fears you might be having a tough time making necessary changes in your life. Unaddressed fear contributes to feeling stuck. Avoiding, escaping, ignoring, or suppressing uncomfortable emotions renders you ineffective in building the life you desire and having healthy relationships. So what is the solution? With Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) you can learn to be in control of your emotions by identifying, accepting, and learning how emotions actually help you. Emotion regulation can put you back in control of yourself, help you use the energy of emotions to make necessary changes, and effectively build the kind of life you want for yourself. For more info on DBT groups or individual therapy, call Rayné Johnson, LCSW: 817-874-8169.

Rayné Johnson, LCSW Let It Rain Psychotherapy, PLLC

Relationships using DBT Skills

Having a diagnosis stemming from childhood physical or sexual abuse or neglect like PTSD, MDD, or a personality disorder can mean that trust is an issue for you. It can also mean that walking within the balance of being open and receptive and having well placed boundaries in relationships can feel like an impossible balancing act. It’s scary and hard and might just seem easier to use anger as a powerful defense or sadness to withdraw and check out of life and relationships altogether. At Let It Rain Psychotherapy, we offer healthier alternatives for learning how to trust the important people in your life and also how to end destructive relationships. Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) skills groups are offered to help individuals learn, among other skills, interpersonal effectiveness which means learning how to get what you want within your relationships, keep relationships that are necessary and good for you, and to practice self-respect in all your relationships. If you find yourself confused, hurt and angry related to relationships in your life- whether or not you have a trauma history- Let It Rain Psychotherapy is ready to facilitate your learning of skills that can provide increased insight and awareness and a new, healthier way of rising to the challenge of building and maintaining healthy relationships. Next DBT groups start April 20th. Individual therapy also offered. Call today: 817-874-8169.

Let It Rain Psychotherapy private lobby

Family Grace Support Group-Crosstimbers Community Church

The holiday season is often tough for many people because sometimes family relationships are just not what we wish they were. How does a season that is supposed to remind us of hope- after the Christian tradition of a tiny babe born in a manger- turn into a season of frustration and despair? When your teen, grown child or spouse has an addiction or mental illness, family get togethers are often tense with misunderstanding, anger, and pain. You want your loved one to get help but they refuse. So why not come for the help yourself? Christmas can be hopeful again when you have the support and counsel you need to set boundaries, learn to communicate effectively, and experience joy despite your circumstances. Register online at crosstimberschurch.org

Secondary PTSD: What is it and how do I know if I have it? by Sarah Billingsley, LMSW

Sarah Billingsley

I grew up in a military family where PTSD was an ongoing conversation in my home. My father is an empathetic man who always offered an open hand and an open couch when any of his Marines were in need. I saw with my own eyes and heard with my own ears at a young age the importance of dealing with the impact of trauma. However, I was unaware of how family members or anyone close to someone with PTSD could develop similar mental health issues due to the stress caused by witnessing trauma against a loved one or knowing a loved one has experienced horrific things in life. In fact, I did not even learn that there are different forms of PTSD until I was in my bachelors’ program in college.

So, the burning questions here are: What exactly is Secondary PTSD? How is it caused? And, how do I know if I have it?

Secondary PTSD is a form of PTSD which is caused by the trauma of learning that someone we love has experienced a traumatizing event. While Secondary PTSD is not an official diagnosis, most mental health professionals recognize this phenomenon as a reality in our patients. Maybe you have learned your sister was sexually abused, witnessed someone you love being abused, or you heard about a dearly loved family member who experienced combat trauma. The emotions we feel when we sympathize with those we love can cause similar symptoms to that of someone who directly experienced the traumatic incident. Why? Well, humans have a tendency to over-sympathize which causes us to quite literally take on the emotions of those around us, especially when discussing emotionally distressing topics. It’s as if we love someone so hard that we begin to feel the depression, anger, and guilt of those who directly experienced the trauma. Those of us who work in helping professions- medics, social workers, therapists, nurses- tend to hear extremely traumatic stories from patients. It can be extremely difficult to differentiate between empathy and sympathy. This can sometimes cause professionals to take on the emotions of clients which can lead to the development of Secondary PTSD.

Now, how do you know if you have Secondary PTSD? The symptoms can be similar to full-blown PTSD symptoms. Depression, irritability, trouble concentrating and difficulty sleeping are common symptoms as the brain begins to process the trauma. Secondary PTSD can also cause nightmares, emotional distress and loss of interest in daily activities. If you or someone you know is exhibiting these symptoms after experiencing a traumatic event, learning of or witnessing a traumatic event involving someone they know, I can help. You are not alone.

Sarah Billingsley, LMSW  sarah.m.billingsley1@gmail.com (928) 919-3401

Let It Rain Psychotherapy, PLLC

1901 Central Drive Suite 716 Bedford Texas 76021

 

DBT- Willing or Willful? How One Forgets in the Process of Forgiving

“I don’t know if I’m bitter but I know I am resentful. How do I even begin to forgive when I know I can never forget?” asks so many who come through my office. Anger can be a hard blot to remove from the soul and the idea of forgetting what happened makes resolving anger seem even more impossible. But possible it is! Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) teaches the difference between being willing and being willful. Willful looks like clenched fist and teeth or arms crossed and eyes rolling. Willingness is palms open, a half smile, and a yes attitude. When you are willing rather than willful you open yourself to the possibility of other options for yourself and to the reality that you have the ability to think differently about what has happened- hence you forget. Willingness is the very first step to curing oneself of resentment and journeying on toward forgiveness. Forgiving is a process that involves forgetting- choosing instead to think deeply in more helpful, realistic terms about what has happened. After awhile the hurt and sadness heals and the alternative way of viewing what happened makes more sense-  gets you unstuck, helps you forget. Relationships cannot grow and transform without the giving up of destructive anger. Forgiveness for the soul is like autumn rains on parched landscape. Relinquish, renew and refresh by learning to be willing. DBT group forming now!! Call me at LET IT RAIN PSYCHOTHERAPY today. 

Let It Rain Psychotherapy 817-874-8169

Pain in Life-Beneficial or Destructive?

You know that rain can be beneficial or destructive. Rain can revive, nourish and transform a parched land or it can flood and destroy an unprotected, unprepared town. The same is true in our own lives. The pain of distressing emotions, relationships, or situations, like rain storming into our lives, can actually help us by waking us up and causing necessary change in ourselves, our relationships, and even our jobs. The pain of hard things in the Christian’s life is meant for good and the Bible is proof of that. On the other hand too much rain can cause devastation and requires the aid of many to survive, clean up debris, salvage anything of value, and rebuild. But remember the words of God spoken through Isaiah the prophet (Is. 43:2) “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; when you go through the rivers, they will not overwhelm you.” God has made a way for the troubles of life to be beneficial rather than destructive. When you are willing what was meant for harm can be for your good in ways you had never imagined. If you are struggling with what feels like torrential downpours of trouble call me at LET IT RAIN PSYCHOTHERAPY. I offer Christian counseling although you don’t have to be a Christian to receive help here. In addition I offer Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) for individuals who suffer from depression, bipolar, anxiety, self harm, addictions, and other mood and behavior problems. Call 817-874-8169 to schedule your appointment today and let the rain do you good!

Let It Rain Psychotherapy, PLLC 

Christian Counseling

It’s easy to be bewildered, even crushed, by hard seasons that inevitably come to you. The question is often, “What have I done to deserve this?” It appears that God is, at times, breaking you down, punishing you, or determined to teach you a lesson. You have heard, most likely, that it’s through the hard times that we change, grow, and become stronger, wiser and develop greater character. We learn to be more compassionate, patient and loving. Hard seasons wrought with scary storms can develop good fruit. However the process is so very painful! To overcome the risk of becoming disillusioned by what God is doing in your life, surrounding yourself with supportive people is key. Root out of your life people who contribute to losing your way. And get into good Christian counseling for your journey ahead. Seasons change. Let It Rain Psychotherapy can help you arrive safely into a new season. Call today!

817-874-8169 1901 Central Dr. Ste 716 Bedford 76021

Grief or Depression: How Can I Tell the Difference?

How can I know if what I am feeling is depression or grief? Grief can be defined as feelings of intense suffering, longing, anger and/or despair over a significant loss. Perhaps you had hoped for something different, something better, something more. And now it appears all hope is lost. And so you grieve. You grieve the loss of a significant romantic relationship, the loss of a beloved pet, betrayal by a best friend, the loss of a job, a role, a status. Grown children continue to grieve the loss of a childhood destroyed by bad parenting- parents who were supposed to love and protect them but instead abused and/or abandoned them. Children grieve when they have to move to a new school, even though they appear to be ok. Parents grieve when their children turn out differently than expected. Normally with the experience of loss, comes grief. Grief is normal. Sometimes, though, there is a tendency to get stuck in the anger or depression stage of grief. Then normal grief becomes complicated, and depression can develop. If you have suffered a loss of some kind and find yourself stuck, Let It Rain Psychotherapy can help move you forward. Call today. 

Do I Have PTSD?

PTSD sometimes develops in an individual after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event, but how does one know whether PTSD has developed within them? Some of the symptoms include intrusive thoughts, disconnectedness, and avoiding anything resembling the trauma. Other symptoms include feeling anxious very often, nightmares, and having a persistent negative view of self and others. PTSD affects the way in which one behaves in a relationship- whether with colleagues, friends/family, or romantic partners. The individual with a history of trauma in their life often finds themselves discouraged and dissatisfied and is at risk for isolating themselves which further contributes to the development of anxiety and depression. If you think you may have PTSD, don’t suffer in silence. You can recover!

I use Trauma-Focused Cognitive Behavior Therapy and Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) to help my clients heal from the affects of trauma and have seen many of them grow and transform. Growth and transformation can be yours too.

With TF-CBT and DBT you will gain insight and awareness into your thoughts, feelings and behavior. You will learn how to control you emotions, tolerate distressing feelings and situations, and become more effective in your relationships. You will learn strategies to help deal with painful memories. As you resolve the trauma by tending to your heart, body and soul you set yourself free to feel more connected, more satisfied, and more at peace with yourself and others. If you think you may have PTSD, take the first step and call Let It Rain Psychotherapy today to begin your healing and recovery.

Private waiting room at Let It Rain Psychotherapy

Trauma Focused Therapy

Experiencing childhood sexual or physical abuse leaves a mark on the heart, body, and soul that feels like everyone can see and yet nobody can help remove. Although logically it is understood the abuse was the choice on the part of the abuser, survivors of childhood trauma often feel unable to shake the feeling of shame brought on by thoughts of “It was my fault.” Survivors almost always try to live in a state of denial because addressing the affects of abuse- well, there are just no words. However, the words themselves- when spoken aloud in the presence of a skilled professional- are what begin the healing process. Like the spring rains on dormant land, when you speak the truth of what happened to you, a new season of renewal, growth and transformation can blossom. Call Let It Rain Psychotherapy today to get started on your changing of seasons. 

Let It Rain Psychotherapy 817-874-8169