hi FJ folks,
I was wondering if anyone here has gone through therapy specifically to deal with processing how they grew up and the relationship with other family members (NOT family therapy). Did it go well? Did it help you?
[possible TW for self-harm]
I'm beginning to realize that there were parts of my childhood that were really neglectful and somewhat abusive. I have a lot of issues with my mom because she doesn't know how to put up boundaries (for anything, ever). I felt my parents - despite being so strict and conservative - never protected me or even really "raised" me to do anything or function as a human being. I'm understanding that my parents will never change, talk about this, or accept that they've done anything wrong (and my mom does have a tendency to threaten suicide and become hysterical when someone brings up things she has done wrong). So I need to process everything on my own without any type of help or closure from them. My sister was very abusive to me and most of our family doesn't have contact with her anymore (even her own oldest son). I don't need help processing the fact that I cut contact (which if anything has been the best and most healing thing I've ever done for myself in my life) but I think I still need help processing how and why things just.....were the way they were. And then of course there was all the weird religious stuff, which didn't help and was very inconsistent and erratic.
I think I need this to not only deal with the past, but also retain what relationship I have left with my parents, which still leave me frustrated and exhausted, even though I think from their perspective they'd say we have a great relationship and are very close; totally opposite from how I see things, but I am so careful to not send them off the deep end. I feel like I walk on eggshells in my life.
I've never been to therapy before and I don't know if it will help me. I don't know how it works. Do I go to a specific therapist? Do I walk in and say, "Yes, hello, I need help with dealing with my childhood and dealing with my parents now?" Or do they ask questions?
[This is not for now as I have approx. $0 money; this is for a hopeful later date when I'm actually a functioning adult.]