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I Need Help Dealing

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I've been thinking that I need to find a counselor to help me deal with all of this. Having never had any serious health issues my entire life, it's a bit hard dealing with this piece of s$#& body that I've suddenly been presented with.

 

Has anyone had any luck with that, and what should I look for in a good counselor?

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sorry you are having a rough time :(  

 

i usually just come here.  but, you know, if you need to see someone, i am a huge fan of counseling.  a psychologist would be good, if you aren't thinking you need meds.  or, is there a support group near you?    

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I am truly sorry you are having a rough time.

 

First, I would go to youtube and look up some guided meditation...either voice or music and voice.  I never went for any of that stuff when I was younger but, presented with health problems of my own, I realized I was going to have to do something to slow my brain down so I can start to deal.  I really had to work on training myself to slow down and relax the body but it does help and you get better at it (if you've not done it before).  Fear and anxiety can be tamed and toned down so your brain can get to work figuring things out...honest it was almost as hard as the new celiac itself to get used to.

 

Secondly, look for a psychologist/psychiatrist that deals with health issues and/or other things specific to you.  I always looked for older, more experienced people because they've seen more...at least that was my take on it.

 

If it's mainly celiac that's got you down these boards are great for finding info and asking questions, but sometimes answers aren't posted right away.  If it's new celiac, and older in life, know that 98% of us (including myself) were also completely overwhelmed but the "logistics" of living with the thing DO work out.  Honest, the confusion passes and the new rules just become normal.  If there are other things going on as well, other boards for those things can be excellent and I did that, too. It helped.  You can pull apart what you need to know and get answers in different places.

 

Peace.

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If you have insurance and want them to cover your visits, usually on the back of your health insurance card there will be a number for mental health claims.  Call them and get a list of providers in your area to start from.  Then, decide whether you need a therapist, psychologist, or psychiatrist.  A psychiatrist prescribes medication and is an actual doctor, and they usually don't do talk therapy- so probably not what you need.  Therapists and psychologists do the same thing and neither prescribe medication, but the psychologist has a higher level of education.  If you have a complex mental illness such as bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, a psychologist may be better for you.

 

Once you have a few to choose from based on who takes your insurance and such, think about who you can comfortably talk to.  Some people have a hard time getting comfortable and opening up to a member of a certain sex, so if that applies, feel free to rule those out.  Also, many mental health professionals run their own solo practices and they may be the one answering the phone when you first call, or returning your message left while they were in a session with a patient.  So, you can use that short conversation to get a feel for how they are and how comfortable you may be with them.  

 

Lastly, some clinicians have specialties and many times this info will either be available on the insurance listing or on a website if they have it.  They can include various issues and if you see one that stands out to you, that can help you choose as well.  I know it may be hard to reach out and ask people you know if they know a counselor that is good, so these are all ways you can find one yourself. 

 

If you don't have/don't want to go through insurance and are a person of a certain faith, many large churches have counseling available and it may be faith-based.

 

So overall, look for someone you feel comfortable talking to.  Feel free to try and talking to them shortly on the phone and if it doesn't feel right, move on.  But I have seen many people in my life helped greatly by getting counseling through hard times and I really hope it helps you a lot :)

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I would also suggest looking for a therapist/psychologist who uses CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) and/or EMDR.  These can be strong tools in learning new ways to deal with issues and cope.   Mindfulness is a technique used at home and has its roots as far back as Buda.  There is a Western Mindfulness technique you can look at on-line.  Music is always more pleasant to hear than a TV and lastly enjoy as much sunshine as you can but use sunscreen.

 

Good luck to you.

 

Colleen

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Hi coffngrl,

You have already received some excellent advice, but I thought I would chime in with my experience.

I have seen a psychologist at a couple of point in my life, and went for just a couple of visits both times. Once when I was about 19 to help me deal with my parents divorce and once when I was about 23 when terrible panic attacks set in (which I now know are probably Celiac related). Both times I was able to get some pretty good coping strategies just from a couple of visits. It was pretty low key and they just asked me some questions and let me talk, and then offered some advice or gave me some suggestions about how to deal with situations. It was kind of just like talking to a new friend who gives really good advice.

I remember that you have had some bad experiences with doctors, so hopefully you will find someone you like in this field right away. I usually check healthgrades.com or vitals.com for reviews of doctors before seeing anyone new.

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I had a really hard time with my diagnosis so I am sorry to hear that you are as well.  I was diagnosed in April of 2012 and went through a divorce in September of 2012 so was trying to deal with two of the hardest things in my life in the same year.  I was talking with a psychologist once a week and he helped me a lot with the divorce but not really with the Celiac diagnosis.  I think maybe because he just didn't understand it and I was educating him?  I found this board though and it was a lifesaver.  Anytime I have a question or am feeling down I come here and can usually find the answer and/or support.  I think it helps to talk to people that are going through the same thing as you because they understand the feelings.  The first year is definately the hardest - it will get better.  It took me about a year to really get a good grasp on the diet.  Now it's second nature and I actually can't imagine ever eating Gluten again.  It will take a while to start feeling better too so that messes with your head because it's depressing when you aren't seeing results - It just takes time - hang in there.  Best of luck.   Hope this helped.  

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Thanks everyone - it's much appreciated. I'm trying out a counselor this afternoon. We'll see how it goes. After two weeks of hardly eating, zero chance of gluten and I'm still having the big D. Neither Immodium nor pepto bismol has helped, it's pretty frustrating and frightening. More tests on Monday. Hooray.

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Really sorry you're having such a hard time right now. I understand the frightening part, I've been there. Glad you're having more tests. There is always an answer, and you'll find it.

 

I agree this site is a good place to come to talk about our issues. It has helped me many times. I have the opposite of D, so can't help much with that.

 

I do have a therapist who helps me a lot. Lately I haven't been well enough to see her in person, so we have phone sessions. In my experience sometimes an MFT can be better than a Psychologist. More schooling doesn't necessarily mean better support and understanding. I wanted one with a personality similar to mine who would understand me and it worked for me to specifically mention that to any receptionist or therapist I spoke to when I was looking for one. Mine really understands me and knows what to say. Try to find one who will let you call them on the phone occasionally when you are especially low.

 

In the meantime there are talk lines now for people who just need someone to talk to for any reason. I used that during a particularly difficult time, and it helped a lot. Nice to know they are there if I need them again. Some of the people who answer are more experienced than others, so call back if you don't get one that is helpful to you the first time.

 

Keeping a journal is a good tool also to write down how you feel. I resist using mine, but always feel better afterward. It gets your thoughts out of your head in the way it does to talk to a person, and you can say anything you want.

 

I use a site with mindfulness guided meditations that is really helpful to relax. There is a woman with a calming voice who guides you through the recorded meditations. Here's a link for the one I use:

 

http://marc.ucla.edu/body.cfm?id=22

 

Hang in there, we're all pulling for you that you find the answers soon :)

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So glad you're going to see someone. It always help to work through the anger. I talk to someone too. I realized how much I resent everyone who can eat whatever/whenever. In short, I was being a real witch. 

 

I hope your visit went well and that you liked the person! 

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Thanks everyone - it's much appreciated. I'm trying out a counselor this afternoon. We'll see how it goes. After two weeks of hardly eating, zero chance of gluten and I'm still having the big D. Neither Immodium nor pepto bismol has helped, it's pretty frustrating and frightening. More tests on Monday. Hooray.

 

This is also fueling your feelings, I am sure. When we constantly feel s$#&ty (no pun intended at all), we are exhausted. Your electrolytes are off

if you are always having D and not eating. You have to hydrate.

 

When i was in this mode, my husband made me a an electrolyte drink (DO NOT use gatorade; it's full of crap and makes D in some people)

 

Take a 16 oz. glass of water, mix in a TBls. of sugar and a tsp. of salt, mix well.Drink it down. 

It sounds yucky, but it's not that bad and it will help restore the electrolytes. Trust me on this one. 

 

Coconut water also helps with this electrolyte imbalance. 

 

I am concerned for you because you really should be rebounding by now. If zero gluten is coming in, then something is creating the D. Hyperthyroidism can cause that. Was your thyroid checked? 

 

Do you have other food intolerances? dairy perhaps?

Maybe you could have the doc do a lactose intolerance test while you're there. 

Other things besides gluten can cause digestive and bowel issues, so clearly if it is not gluten,

you've got something going on and you need to get to the root of it so you can stop this.

 

It could be a bacterial infection, maybe an imbalance of gut flora (resolved by taking probiotics). it could be c.diff

or microscopic colitis (these things can accompany celiac) 

or it could be some other inflammatory bowel issue, but do not think the worst

 

Just get it checked out. Good luck. I'm hoping you get answers soon.

You can't keep going like this, hon. 

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I'm newly diagnosed, too.  At age 60.  Adjusting is difficult and slow.  Everything I ever knew about food and eating is now turned upside down and inside out and backwards.  It took a year of being extremely ill to come to a proper diagnosis.  Try this. Take this test. Then try that.  Ambulances.  Hospitals.  Cardiac units.  A true nightmare.  Months without being able to eat ... no nourishment means you're weak and the brain isn't working optimally.  Depression sets in.  Frustration.  Anger.  More frustration.

I'm the matriarch of the family (my own mother died many years ago), and was always the one who did the cooking and meals for family holidays and events, etc. Cakes and cookies and huge meals.

 

Re-thinking all of that ... being limited to where I can go out to eat ... not eating at other people's houses .... social events.

Everything changes.

 

Fortunately, my husband is my biggest cheerleader.  Now that we have things more or less under control and understand what's going on and what we need to do to protect my health, he will spend hours reading labels, helping me shop, cleaning ... stand up for me when people give the old "you're just imaging things" or "you're being ridiculous". 

His best line was "You're not the one picking her up off the bathroom floor, cleaning her up, and watching an ambulance take her away, not knowing what's wrong and if you'll see her alive again.  No. She's not being ridiculous."

 

You're not alone.  It's scary.  It changes your world. 

I've been able to get the big D under control.  Watching my fiber intake, being careful with too much roughage, eating carefully ... I also drink aloe vera juice every day.  I missed 2 days because I forgot to take some with me on a trip.  Boy, could I tell the difference.

 

This is a great place. There are great people here with great suggestions. Hope you'll keep coming back.

 

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Fortunately, my husband is my biggest cheerleader.  Now that we have things more or less under control and understand what's going on and what we need to do to protect my health, he will spend hours reading labels, helping me shop, cleaning ... stand up for me when people give the old "you're just imaging things" or "you're being ridiculous". 

His best line was "You're not the one picking her up off the bathroom floor, cleaning her up, and watching an ambulance take her away, not knowing what's wrong and if you'll see her alive again.  No. She's not being ridiculous."

 

 

 

Your hubs is loving and compassionate. Much like mine--who never wavered in his faith that we would figure out what was killing me.

 

My story is here:

 

http://glutendude.com/gluten-free-love-stories/my-anam-cara/

 

I suggest probiotics...Florajen 3 is a good one. Even Jebby (who is a doctor and posts on here) takes them.

 

and here is what I always  say to everyone...you're never alone.  ^_^

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More tests on Monday. Hooray.

 

Hope you'll let us know how it goes...

 

I don't know about D, but I was reading that soluble fiber slows down digestion. You want to avoid insoluble fiber of course, but it was news to me about the soluble fiber info. I don't know if that's of any help to you. Hope you can eat more soon, you'll feel better.

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Really hated seeing this thread and wish that everyone could have a miraculous recovery when they go gluten-free. I was just reading another post a couple days ago about someone who had problems with ongoing D long after going gluten-free.

Of course counseling could help, but it does sound as if you might have issues other than just accidental glutenings that require more medical attention. And being able to eat and digest a few good meals would go a long way to improving your mood.

Of course, you can't rely on doctors to figure everything out for you so I still think the folks here on the forum are a great source for generating ideas of things to pay attention to, test for, and to research on your own.

I presume your doctors have already checked for the bacterial imbalances which can cause ongoing D. 

If those tests don't turn up anything, there are all sorts of food intolerances out there in addition to gluten. Allium, fructan, fructose, night shades, lactose. And don't forget chemicals. Artificial colors and flavors are known to cause digestive-system damage, many people have allergic reactions to pesticides, and other chemicals used in food production. And don't forget non-food sources of problems. For instance, one of the symptoms of fluoride toxicity is diarrhea so you may want to look at absolutely everything that enters your body. FODMAP diets and organic options may help you find some foods that are less problematic for you while you figure things out. 

On the psychological side, the first few months of being gluten-free are definitely tough - even if you don't have ongoing digestive problems. 

It will get better ... and you will get better and coping with whatever problems are ongoing. 

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Your hubs is loving and compassionate. Much like mine--who never wavered in his faith that we would figure out what was killing me.

 

My story is here:

 

http://glutendude.com/gluten-free-love-stories/my-anam-cara/

 

I suggest probiotics...Florajen 3 is a good one. Even Jebby (who is a doctor and posts on here) takes them.

 

and here is what I always  say to everyone...you're never alone.  ^_^

 

Oh my. I finally read your story.Our lives are so similar. Our husband are cut from the same cloth.

 

It's amazing what the right diagnosis can do!

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Thanks again for all the feedback. I too am blessed to have a caring, supporting husband and that makes it easier, but I really hate being a burden and worrying him. I wish it would all just go away! Had the lower GI scoped, and they found nothing remarkable, but am waiting on the biopsy. Meanwhile, I have a barium x-ray for the small intestine on the books - but what should they do for the bacterial thing? I've been taking probiotics, but no doctor suggested bacterial overgrowth. From a few quick reads it seems like tests for that aren't very reliable.

 

I did go see a counselor, but she wasn't much help. She spent the whole time asking me about medical stuff, and when I pushed her to suggest ways I can deal with the stress she didn't give me very many suggestions. I'll keep looking around...

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You can definitely be tested for SIBO (Small Intestine Bacterial Overgrowth). I'm surprised your GI didn't mention that, wait, no I'm not, mine didn't either. For you it seems like an obvious thing to test for though. I would recommend getting tested for that. I think it's pretty common for people like us to get that. I know what the test is like, but I haven't been tested for it, still not sure if I need to be, but someone who has had it could tell you more. You breath into a tube and they can tell if you have excess bacteria based if they find a gas in your breath given off by the bacteria. It takes antibiotics to clear it up and a low sugar/carb diet.

 

There's also a DNA stool test you can have that my Naturopath told me about. It requires having a sample shipped to a company, I forget which state. It's much more comprehensive than a regular stool test because it picks up DNA remnants of bacteria, yeast, parasites or whatever and a regular stool test can only determine this by looking under a microscope, so it can't pick up anything that's too small. It's not cheap, but with the trouble you are having it might be worth it. I tried to mention the company name once in a thread, but couldn't, I guess they used to try and advertise on here, so If you want more info on the company, PM me. I assume you've had a regular stool test ordered by your doc?

 

Try interviewing therapists over the phone before you meet them, saves time. Ask specific questions about what you're looking for. Remember you are in the position to hire them to help you, and to fire them if you don't like them, not the other way around! You're paying so get exactly what you want. Ask if they will give a consultation appt before you have to pay for a whole appt the first time you meet them, some will do that I think.

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I did go see a counselor, but she wasn't much help. She spent the whole time asking me about medical stuff, and when I pushed her to suggest ways I can deal with the stress she didn't give me very many suggestions. I'll keep looking around...

 

Sometimes, especially when things are complicated, the first few visits are more of a getting to know you kind of thing before you get into the issues.  However, trust your gut sense on whether or not to keep with that counselor, it is usually right. 

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