Today was the first of my 18 month of schema therapy for BPD assessments. I know I’ve mentioned before how odd I find this whole part of the trial. I think it’s because I’m not sure what they are measuring and how I’m coming across.
Because I feel a little depressive at the moment I feel like I really struggled with things today – it all felt a bit sluggish and in slow motion. This assessment consists of hundreds of questions ranging from how often you’ve thought about killing yourself in the last three months, if you walk in front of traffic irresponsibly, how much alcohol you drink, how lonely you feel, if you prize yourself above others, if your friends are supportive, if you can see things other people can’t, if you think you’re a bad person who doesn’t deserve kindness, if you hurt yourself, if you forget large chunks of time, if you forgive yourself your mistakes, if you purposefully destroy the good things in your life…and this goes on for two hours, the same question rephrased and it pokes and prods at every weak spot, emotional issue or insecurity you might have. It’s exhausting. And without any feedback or explanation about this, it’s really unnerving.
We get the same questions every six months and I suppose the idea is to see that schema group therapy, as a therapy model, is improving our mental health and quality of life. Except sometimes I feel like I answer the questions the same every time – not deliberately, just that maybe things haven’t changed for me.
Then after this avalanche of questions, we’re asked to draw a complex shape, which is taken away and then a while later have to redraw it from memory. Mine sucked. If my memory was supposed to have improved, then I’m not the participant patient they were after!
Basically I’m just expressing my dissatisfaction with this assessment process. I know I signed up for a trail and I’m part of research – but I’m also a person and I’m always left feeling a bit shaky and disillusioned about my progress. I think I’ll have to suggest a debriefing session for future participants.