Mental Health

My Experience: Cognitive Analytic Therapy – Week 1

Hi everyone,

As my blog recently is primarily focusing on my mental health and my journey within the recovery process I thought I would document the new therapy that I have started today. Of course I have been seeing an eating practitioner since September, one before Christmas and one since Christmas – I really like her, and I’ve never built up such a relationship with anyone dealing with my mental health as much as I have with her. Which is the most important thing so you can be honest and let your feelings flow! 
Last week I met my new therapist which I have been waiting to see since September, I’ve seen many counsellors in the past and never found any of them helpful – sorry lads. However, this time it feels right and I feel like I can truly be helped onto the right path. In the past I have done CBT, and like anything some things work and some things don’t, CBT was not for me and I insisted throughout my process that I did not want to do CBT  again. 
Here I am though, with my new therapist who today said she would like to try ‘CAT’ with me, that’s Cognitive Analytic Therapy. 
‘CAT stands for Cognitive Analytic Therapy; a collaborative programme for looking at the way a person thinks, feels and acts, and the events and relationships that underlie these experiences (often from childhood or earlier in life). As its name suggests, it brings together ideas and understanding from different therapies into one user-friendly and effective therapy.’ – ACAT

I was told I would be doing at least 16 sessions, SIXTEEN. That’s 16 weeks, four months, I don’t know why but this made me so happy. Usually I’d be sighing the shit out of something like that, but the time and effort that is being put into making me feel better is heart warming really. I’ve never wanted to praise the mental health system as much as I do at the moment. 
We went through some pages today, like a questionnaire of some sort which looked at things like traps, snags and states. So states I get myself in, the first one was ‘Zombie’ – I have felt like a total zombie for a few days now so I immediately was like yES, THAT’S ME. My therapist asked me how it felt to know I’m not the only one who feels the way I do, because there is tonnes and tonnes of stuff in CAT to help people just like me.
Honestly, it feels strange because with mental illnesses you feel so isolated and alone it is weird to think someone else in the world is sitting in their room just like you, in silence with nothing but their thoughts to guide them through. 
We also spoke about how my anxiety is a comfort to me…and how the last few days I have felt empty and alone and I’m not used to being ’empty’. If I’m not thinking about my health or all of the 34875844 things I think about then what is there left to think about? No idea. Very strange, my mental health is really all I know.  My mental health has kept me company for years and when it feels like it’s not around I guess I do feel lost. I need to let that all go however and I feel like this form of therapy really is going to help. 
I really want to document my journey, please let me know if you have had an experience going through CAT I would really love to hear you experiences! 
Until next time x x x

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