They are Mind Doctors not Mind Readers-Help them to help you.

So true. Do not drink and Drive.
Asleep again with the effects of Alcoholism and Depression There comes a time when it is time to see a Professional. Be it a Doctor,Counsellor, Social Worker, Psychologist or a Psychiatrist. Normally by this stage of your journey you are not feeling too great. In many cases you will going just to keep the family off your back. Fair enough. At least you have started on the road to recovery. Those inital appointments are probably conducted with you as a disbelieving shell of your former shelf. "How in the hell can these guys help me? They have no idea how bad I feel. Look at them with their sweet smelling offices and a grumpy receptionist at the front?" In you go, more than likely fuelled by your favourite brew or pill. I recall leaving one appointment and immediately cracking a brew open in my car followed by an old fashioned puke. My attention span could be measured in seconds rather than hours.
The terrible truth is that all those Professionals are way ahead of you. Been there. Got that T Shirt. They generally have seen it all before and nothing you can tell them will knock them out of their stride. So you got pissed three weeks ago,stayed pissed, wrecked the family runaround,shagged the pastors wife, knocked the boss on his behind and ran up a debt of thousands at the local betting shop. All this while your wife and kids had no food at home. And you think you are unique and hard done by. Well have I got news for you. YOU ARE NOT. Join the club and take a number please.
As I staggered into their offices I used to wonder what they thought of me. Pity? Disgust? Compassion? The reality is that the vast majority are well qualified and experienced in dealing with the difficult cases. You are probably nothing unique to them. Alcoholism and Depression account for a large percentage of their daily time. Many reputable studies put these "silent killers" at the top of the illness charts. The circumstances of individual patients vary slightly but the treatments, end results and patient attitudes have much in common. You may feel that you are at the end of the road, so unique and hard done by but fortunately your care-giver has seen it all before. He will try every trick in the book to gain your trust. I fought against this for a long time and it cost me both physically and mentally. Having made the effort to go and see someone for help take the next step and hand over your trust.
Now that we have got you sitting in front of somebody who could save your life there is one "Golden Rule" that I feel obliged to pass on to you. This one is key. SPILL YOUR GUTS OUT. Do not hold back. The more you say the easier it is to get you the right help. These guys are MIND DOCTORS NOT MIND READERS. This example sums it up:
"How are you feeling today?"
"Why? What thoughts and feelings are going through your mind?"
"I think I drank too much last night."
Oh really. This guy was more than likely drinking up to the moment he arrived and all he could think about was where the next beer or pill was coming from. Harsh but mostly true. In a perfect world he would have gone on to explain that he was feeling suicidal and lost in a sea of darkness and despair. He should have opened up about the withdrawal symptoms and ongoing hallicinations. Instead he chose to keep quiet. He should have talked about his sense of alienation from his wife and children and the hopeless situation he found himself in at work. All in all he should have described a world gone horribly wrong and with no apparant hope.
This is when the medical professionals have to use their best judgement and experience to assess how far down the road this guy is. The timing of the critical interventions such as hospitalisation and in extreme cases of Depression , ECT, are crucial to bringing the patient back to Planet Earth. But give the care-giver a break. They need to know precisely where you are in this journey of self-destruction. The more they know , the easier it is to treat you. In fact with the very good Psychologists etc. you will eventually believe that they are Mind Readers. They seem to know your very thoughts and feelings. There is no magic here. Years of experience are brought into play. The important thing to remember here is that they have your interests at heart. Forget the words Embarassment, Humiliation and Reputation. Leave that all behind in the waiting room.
I know from my own experience that it is not easy to sit in front of a stranger, not matter how nice they are, and reveal the most intimate details about your life. For what is worth you are protected by Doctor/Patient Privilege.
Seize these opportunities and make the most of them. Help the Mind Doctor to be less of a Mind Reader. Recovery from Depression and Alcoholism is very possible. You will in time just look back at this time as part of a painful journey to regain your rightful place in the human race.

Also please have a look at these Posts relating to My Own Alcoholism/Depression and Addiction Recovery -

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