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Dysfunctional Family Feud

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by lust4life, May 9, 2011.

  1. lust4life

    lust4life
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    A few weeks ago, my wife booked an appointment with a therapist for family counseling and our first session is this evening. Some background:

    Our oldest daughter, 17, has Asperger's syndrome, an autism spectrum disorder. She is a highly intelligent individual, but is challenged when it comes to socialization, reading others' emotions, interpreting social cues, etc. She processes information and the world differently and more often than not, it comes across as nothing more than self-centeredness if you don't have a knowledge and understanding of the disorder. She can lend new meaning to the word frustrating, especially since becoming a teenager. She's been seeing a psychologist for a few years now to learning coping and adjustment skills, but we're really not seeing much progress in her behavior. She's just not putting the tools into practice. She's a year away from going off to college.

    I am a recovering alcoholic with close to 3 years of sobriety, so up until June of 2008, the Dad my kids knew was the active alcoholic one. I've got a ton of other flaws, but there's a 60,000 character limit to posts.

    My wife is codependent and an enabler to the extreme. (Right before I got sober, she hit me with divorce papers due to my drinking, and that very weekend, returned from grocery shopping with two cases of Bud Light aluminum bottles for me.) Now, she focuses her enabling 100% on our kids, which has given rise to a heightened sense of entitlement on their parts, and contributes to their lack of taking responsibility.

    Our youngest, 13, is a very gifted and intelligent girl, but doesn't fully grasp that much of her sister's behaviors are the result of her Asperger's, takes it personally, and sibling shitstorms ensue.

    Even with all of this, it's still a far better dynamic than the one I grew up in. As a counseling student, I'm all for starting this process tonight and hope we can all draw some insight into how we can improve our dynamic, and wish my birth family had done it, but that was never going to happen and it was what it was.

    Focus: Has your family (birth or marital) gone through the counseling process? What did you get out of it? Did it bring you closer, or do you now spend the holidays in a Las Vegas suite with a hooker?

    Alt. Focus: Do you think your family could use it? Why? And what's stopping you?
     
  2. DrFrylock

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    Well, this is better than the "general mental health shitstorm thread" that we could run, so let's go with it.

    On that note, if this turns INTO the mental health shit-thread, not only will I lock it, but banninations will ensue, because this will be the second time that it happened.
     
  3. Juice

    Juice
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    My sister has a handful of learning disabilities that put her back about 5 years socially and and maturity-wise. She's a better student than my brother and I, but her social and organizational skills are severely lacking. Growing up we would always give her shit, a lot of the time unfairly. We went to family counseling a few times but it didn't help much. Eventually in the end it took me growing up to improve the situation. For us, counseling didnt do much, but if it works for others, I'm all for it. Damn this post was cathartic...
     
  4. Disgustipated

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    I am a right, royal bastard sometimes, even when I don't mean to be.

    When I was still with my son's mother, we were going through the end game and I suggested we get some relationship counselling. I didn't want to break up the family, but I was sick and tired of her controlling ways. Despite always responding at the time, pointing them out and asking her to stop, she'd laugh it off and say I was "too sensitive". Forgive me, I don't like being told where I can and can't stand when using the microwave.

    We went for the first appointment, and the counsellor asked us both to explain (one at a time and in our own words) our view of the situation. ExDisgust is not particularly good at communication, so she gives a short summary of how I'm a wuss or something like that and doesn't really understand why we're here. I then give a 10 minute, detailed description of everything she does and how it makes me feel. That may sound like I have a sandy vagina, but I know how to talk to counsellors to make them see things my way. And it worked.

    At the end of the session, she turned to ExDisgust and gave her a list of about 10 things she wanted her to do. Then she turned to me and said, "...and Disgustipated, I want you to watch ExDisgust and make sure she does them." And that was it.

    We didn't make it to another session. I still don't know if she's done anything on that list, but I really don't care anymore.
     
  5. lust4life

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    Well, this thread is going about as well as our first session.

    Okay, that's not true. It went about as well as I expected it would: the kids arguing and blaming one another for us having to be there, thus proving our point.
     
  6. Nettdata

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    When my ex-wife and I went to therapy, it was a gong show.

    We tried 3 different therapists, and they all had no fucking idea at all with how to effectively deal with major mental health issues in a marriage.

    The first 3-5 sessions were us basically teaching them how schizo-affective and bi-polar actually worked, and the issues they were causing.

    Fuck, I basically told them what my own analysis was, and they drooled and went glassy eyed.

    In the end, a couple of years after we got divorced, the ex came and saw me and said I was 100% right.

    Not saying that therapists don't work, but I get pissed right the fuck off when I'm paying $150/hr to teach THEM about shit.

    Gotta love the ex, though... in the third session of the last therapist we saw, half-way through she got up and said to me, "this isn't going any better, this one is just as fucking clueless as the others, so lets stop wasting our money" and led the way out of the room.

    A month later we were standing in line at the local courthouse filing for divorce and planning our divorce party.