Overweight and Invisible – part 4

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_124014661What follows is part four of a fictional exchange between a client, Carrie and her therapist. Carrie is 16 years old, and she weighs 173 lbs. She has a younger sister, Tori, who is just 15, pretty, popular and athletic.

It has been two weeks since her last session.

Therapist: “Hello Carrie, how are you doing on your homework?”

Carrie: “Well, I thought about what you said, how I wasn’t out of control, that I had the adult power of choice, I just never used it.”

Therapist: “Good. What happened!”

Carrie: “It’s what didn’t happen. I didn’t go home and chow down donuts.”

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Overweight and Invisible – Part 3

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_124014661What follows is part three of a fictional exchange between a client, Carrie and her therapist. Carrie is 16 years old, and she weighs 173 lbs. She has a younger sister, Tori, who is just 15, pretty, popular and athletic.

Carrie: “I thought overeating had to do with instant gratification, and that food equals the love I am not getting from my parents.”

Therapist: “These are not `causes’ of overeating, any more than high fever is a cause of pneumonia. One is a symptom of the other. We must not focus on symptoms or neglect the real issues.”

Carrie: “What issues?”

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Overweight and Invisible- part2

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_124014661

What follows is part two of a fictional exchange between a client, Carrie and her therapist. Carrie is 16 years old, and she weighs 173 lbs. She has a younger sister, Tori, who is just 15, pretty, popular and athletic.

Carrie: “It seems like I’ve just been going through the motions for some time.”

Therapist: “Since your sister Tori was born?”

Carrie: “I don’t remember not having a sister I was only 18 months old when she was born.”

Therapist: “What is the first thing you remember?”

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Overweight and Invisible- part1

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_124014661Eating disorders are more dangerous than they appear. The apparent issues, are not the issues: “appearance,” “nutrition,” “calories,” “popularity,” or the lack thereof. The real issue for many is control. “I may not be able to control much in my life, but I can control my food intake!” With time, the person does not control her food intake – it controls her! What if the problem she is trying to solve is the problem of identity? What if there is a void where her personality is supposed to be? Might she not try to fill that void with something tangible like mashed potatoes or donuts. What if her problem is relieving the pain of being alone? Her loneliness is not “solitude.” It is an unbearable confirmation that she is “unlovable”. Still another goal is to relieve the pain of insecurity. The overeating or under-eating is her solution to problems that, to her knowledge, cannot be solved any other way.

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Do You Need to be Needed?

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_209372542Mark’s wife, Mary wants him to come in for counseling. He does not want to change. The only thing he wants to change is her. Mary came in for counseling to get relief from her frustration and disappointment. Her anger was beginning to turn into depression. The happier Mark was with his golf buddies, the more depressed she became.

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Is Your Subconscious Making You Anxious?

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_220128193People that are shy and introverted tell therapists that when they enter a restaurant, people look at them, creating anxiety. It’s true, but it applies to everyone, not just those who are shy. When anything enters your visual field, you subconsciously begin scanning it. A person walking into a room is “scanned” by almost everyone else and that automatic scanning procedure takes about two seconds.

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Emotional Arguments: I am Right and You are Wrong

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_163917227When someone makes an accusation, it is usually hard for them to go back to review the underlying evidence. They will offer you rationalizations to defend their accusations, but these justifications came after the fact. They were made up afterwards to legitimise their own feelings.

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Swings are like life

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_192292349Swings are like life, they have their ups and downs, their backs and forth’s, some times they twist out of balance, they may not always be smooth as we hope, there is not always stable foot when we touch the ground, there are many factors that are beyond our control, like the length of the ropes, the strength of the breeze, or the pressure applied by the pusher, the more we swing, the better we become and easier it is to manage, but swings have a habit of settling down, losing their upward motion and centering themselves even if we do nothing at all.

Girl on a swing image available from Shutterstock.



Can you Predict the Future?

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_120327571Melissa’s boss Vince is provoking her because of his own insecurity. He is trying to build himself up by tearing her down. Vince may sense her vulnerability and he sees her as a “safe” target. Instead of melting down, Melissa can choose to catch herself “transferring” old feelings from her past (her overcritical mother) to authority figures in the present. She can choose to disengage from this counter productive antagonism. She can choose not to give Vince the power to make her a helpless victim. She is a grown up now.

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Have You Been Set Up to Fail?

By Aaron Karmin

shutterstock_216792940Melissa had become very upset while at work. She had been working on the quarterly budget that was due in two days. She was ahead of schedule, and she had a clear plan for the steps ahead. Then she saw her manager Vince go into the Vice President’s office. She could hear her manager complaining that the budget was behind schedule, and that Melissa would never be able to get it out on time.

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Recent Comments
  • Aaron Karmin: Hello I regret any confusion. The revision below has been made to part 1: What follows is a fictional...
  • gcat: I’ve read both articles and I am left confused. 1. Is this written by a patient or a therapist? 2. Is the...
  • Aaron Karmin: Hello Thanks for posting…My next post is a continuation of the post on self-blame. I regret any...
  • Lisa: I think the article is missing a page because it stops without any type of ending. Instead it offers a question...
  • kkaattee: This subject makes me sad. If a child is demanding, most often there is a reason. If they are old enough...
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