Tuesday, April 20, 2010

A Step in the Right Direction

Yesterday I took what felt like a big step in getting some help for my mental/emotional self. While the anti-depressants have worked an awful lot in the major depression problem, I'm still suffering from the serious issue of having a savior complex.

I want to fix everyone. I want to save everyone. And I can't. Which is just frustrating! Especially when they are coming to me with the hope I can "make it all better." In reality they know I can't. To some extent even I know I can't, but it doesn't stop me from trying.

Becoming the wife of an LDS bishop is not an easy role to take on. Some church members believe my husband tells me everything, and either avoid me because of what they think I think, or start talking to me as if I know precisely what's going on. Other people think I tell my husband everything they tell me, so either don't tell me anything or let on more than I wanted to know. Either way I constantly feel caught in the middle, or shoved aside.

I've had another run of everyone telling me their hardships, which I fully encourage as I know what it can mean to have just one empathetic person to talk to. But unlike my husband, who was given a very special blessing of being able to shake things off, I cannot do the same. When someone unloads their frustrations and hardships on my shoulders, they unwittingly leave a bunch of it behind. It sticks to me like molasses, and the more I try to scrape it off, the messier I get.

My husband can tell when I've been around too many negative situations. Just the other day he said, "When your friends are depressed, you get depressed." Very true. Yet, even knowing this is the effect being the shoulder to cry on has on me, I wouldn't change it for the world. I love being that person others feel safe to share their troubles. It gives me a sense of being needed, as though I'm helping in some small way.

But the truth is I need someone to help me deal with all of this. I'm not a counselor. I haven't gone to school to learn how to help others. Over the last two months so much has happened both within our own home and outside of it that I have felt more overwhelmed than ever before! I've felt way in over my head, and have been drowning far too long.

After receiving a priesthood blessing, and a few long chats with my mother, I finally made the call to LDS Social Services yesterday to see about getting in to talk with a counselor. They could have gotten me in tonight, but Tuesdays are always hectic for our family. So I've been put on a waiting list. It might take a few weeks until they're able to fit me in, but that's okay. Since I made the call I've been feeling very at peace, as though I've taken the right step in the right direction.

Funny this is, the sweetest remark given to me was from the guy at the insurance company I spoke with to see if I needed a referral first. As we were ending our conversation he said, "I really hope you'll be okay." Know what? Me too :)


Momma Ellen said...

Dear Laurie, I'm glad you made the call. I love you!

Missy AKA Little Messy Missy said...


Debbie D said...

I know a great counselor, if you're interested. And I don't want to drag you down with my burdens. I've decided we need to go do something fun and only talk of positives in our lives...sound good?