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Inappropriate Group Discussions?


purple

Question

If you are upset by or sensitive to discussions of homosexual topics; this could be triggering to you. Just be forewarned. Thank-you.

I was participating in a PTSD Women's group recently at the VAMC. The focus of the group was supposed to be trauma issues. During one group mtg a group member mentioned that she was/is homosexual. No big deal. Another group member made mention of the same...again, no big deal. However, they kept talking about their lifestyles and preferences throughout the group. I found it odd as I thought the group was about trauma. The tdoc said nothing.

The following week, one of these members made a very disturbing comment about having fantasies of a particular young girl she used to watch on TV and described what she was wearing, etc. Again, the tdoc said nothing.

I've never returned to the group. In my last appt with this tdoc I told her that I found this extremely disturbing and why didn't she do anything about it during group? Her comment was that there was nothing wrong with this other vets comments and that I should be prepared for diverse conversation during groups.

Really?

Am I way off base here or is my tdoc off her rocker????

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Purple:

If the facilitator allows it not much you can do. You left the Group. That is a statement. I been in quite a few groups and I can't recall sexual orientation or fantasies coming up. Maybe you should have requested that the group decide if the subject was appropriate. My experience in Group has been that usually one or two have pretty much control of the group. When I was in if I did not care about the discussion I just tuned out.

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Larry-

Yes I read the other post & that is too bad as it seems you faced a similar problem in your group. Good luck as I see you intend on returning to your group.

Getting "off-topic" in group is a big pet-peeve of mine. I let this be known to the group and the tdoc when we first begin to meet, and at other times when over half of our group time was spent off-topic. But guess that feel on deaf ears.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

x

x

x

Purple, The time to speak up and talk, about your feelings, was in the Group Meeting. Why not? ~Wings

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I have no problem with another's sexuality. I have no desire to interfere with another's bedroom practices. However, I keep my heterosexuality in my bedroom, and I would like to see everyone else do the same. That said, I see nothing wrong light public displays of affection, or crude sexual comments in a group of friends. A PTSD group therapy session doesn't qualify as a group of friends IMHO. I think you should have said something during the group to let these women know you were uncomfortable. If that doesn't work, then start talking about your sexual fantasies with whatever male you want to. If you don't have any...make it up as you go. If they don't like it, get even raunchier... ;)

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I have no problem with another's sexuality. I have no desire to interfere with another's bedroom practices. However, I keep my heterosexuality in my bedroom, and I would like to see everyone else do the same. That said, I see nothing wrong light public displays of affection, or crude sexual comments in a group of friends. A PTSD group therapy session doesn't qualify as a group of friends IMHO. I think you should have said something during the group to let these women know you were uncomfortable. If that doesn't work, then start talking about your sexual fantasies with whatever male you want to. If you don't have any...make it up as you go. If they don't like it, get even raunchier... ;)

Very good response rentalguy, That should take care of any problems in the group. I totally agree.

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  • HadIt.com Elder
I have no problem with another's sexuality. I have no desire to interfere with another's bedroom practices. However, I keep my heterosexuality in my bedroom, and I would like to see everyone else do the same. That said, I see nothing wrong light public displays of affection, or crude sexual comments in a group of friends. A PTSD group therapy session doesn't qualify as a group of friends IMHO. I think you should have said something during the group to let these women know you were uncomfortable. If that doesn't work, then start talking about your sexual fantasies with whatever male you want to. If you don't have any...make it up as you go. If they don't like it, get even raunchier... ;)

Except that in a PTSD group of Sexual Assault and Rape victims, the conversational fantasies would be more of retrobutional fantasies, and not with sexual overtures. IMO. ~Wings

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Oh no, this comment was clearly a sexual fantasy comment. Here it is...One of the ladies in the group commented how she missed watching the Mickey Mouse Show because she missed seeing the young girls on there in their tight sweaters. Ewwwwwww...she then went on to describe "perky" parts of their bodies.

This woman is in her 60s. I wanted to hurl.

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  • HadIt.com Elder
Oh no, this comment was clearly a sexual fantasy comment. Here it is...One of the ladies in the group commented how she missed watching the Mickey Mouse Show because she missed seeing the young girls on there in their tight sweaters. Ewwwwwww...she then went on to describe "perky" parts of their bodies.

This woman is in her 60s. I wanted to hurl.

Ahhhh, yes, Annette.........she had "perky parts".... ;)

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  • HadIt.com Elder
Oh no, this comment was clearly a sexual fantasy comment. Here it is...One of the ladies in the group commented how she missed watching the Mickey Mouse Show because she missed seeing the young girls on there in their tight sweaters. Ewwwwwww...she then went on to describe "perky" parts of their bodies.

This woman is in her 60s. I wanted to hurl.

I belive you Purple, just saying that in a PTSD Therapy Group, I (like you), prolly wouldn't want to waste anybody's time with Micky Mouse Fantasies. ~Wings

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  • HadIt.com Elder

I totally agree with your point Wings. I'm just grabbing at straws to find a way for Purple to shut them up. I personally would have just walked out. That would go the same if it were homo- or heterosexual fantasies. There is a time and a place, and that is not it. I think the only exception would be retribution fantasies, and I think that would be pushing the boundaries and could even land the veteran in psych ward for 48 hours.

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  • HadIt.com Elder
I totally agree with your point Wings. I'm just grabbing at straws to find a way for Purple to shut them up. I personally would have just walked out. That would go the same if it were homo- or heterosexual fantasies. There is a time and a place, and that is not it. I think the only exception would be retribution fantasies, and I think that would be pushing the boundaries and could even land the veteran in psych ward for 48 hours.

Rental, This the the pure Catch 22 of VA's PTSD "treatment" or "therapy". Where the VA counselors or facilitator's encourage discussion, but then limit that discorse to nicey-nice talk, rather than dealing with the emotional gristle of trauma survivors. These are harrowing experiences, life and death, and the VA counselors may well be very unprepared for the consequences of lifting the lid on Pandora's Box. The result of this supression is either more mind numbing, or, like you said, possible in-patient confinement for the willingness to be brutally honest in treatment. There seems to be no "safe place" within the VA medical system to deal with PTSD. Maybe Vietnam Vets have had some good group discussions, I would be curious to know if that's the case. ~Wings

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Rental, This the the pure Catch 22 of VA's PTSD "treatment" or "therapy". Where the VA counselors or facilitator's encourage discussion, but then limit that discorse to nicey-nice talk, rather than dealing with the emotional gristle of trauma survivors. These are harrowing experiences, life and death, and the VA counselors may well be very unprepared for the consequences of lifting the lid on Pandora's Box. The result of this supression is either more mind numbing, or, like you said, possible in-patient confinement for the willingness to be brutally honest in treatment. There seems to be no "safe place" within the VA medical system to deal with PTSD. Maybe Vietnam Vets have had some good group discussions, I would be curious to know if that's the case. ~Wings

May be it is a catch 22. However, I have a problem just being in any group. And I would probably also just walk out. Unfortunatly you then don't receive your much needed therapy. Hmmmmm.... what to do?

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When our group was limited to military sexual trauma for women only and led by my former RN that I used to see....it was a good group as far as being able to openly discuss specific MST issues. We stayed on-topic but weren't required to re-tell our trauma if we didn't want too.

During our 90-minute group session it was all "business". Now having said that....after group, if we all agreed, we would stay after, sometimes RN person would stay, sometimes she would leave...and we would just BS. Nothing still inappropriate, but we would talk about anything and even do some VA-bashing!

Still when I mentioned this format-type to the current tdoc, she actually labeled me--in front of the whole group--as an "excluder". She said I was one who is interested in excluding others from the group and this only served as a detriment to the entire group...........................................................................

......................................................................oh yes she did.

I'm telling ya' she's a piece of work. Not sure where they dug her up from.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Group therapy helped me more than one on one. I just never was able to trust people who got their paychecks from the VA.

It really is moot cause the VA hands you off to take pills when they figure that they will have to pay you at 100% P&T.

Anyone know of a Veteran who was cured of PTSD?

I know people who can better manage their symptoms and have learned how to deal with it but no cure that I know of.

My theory of PTSD is that some traumatic event aka stressor causes the brain to become rewired. Once the wires are out of whack you can make minor adjustments and even lead a someone decent life but you can never go back to before. That is why the VA should pay your Service damaged you.

I work very hard at trying to keep stress out of my life. Of course life is full of stress so it makes it difficult. Stress triggers panic attacks for me.

So my family and hard work enabled me to be better and some times able to do stuff I never dreamed that I could but I know that I reached a point here it became impossible to deal with work as I knew it. Now I have limited my exposure to things that made me sick. Some of the Docs call it avoidance and I call it good mental health.

Sorry did not know I would start this and end up with a semi rant.

I have low expectations that the VA will help me or even wants to I have been anxious far to long.

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When our group was limited to military sexual trauma for women only and led by my former RN that I used to see....it was a good group as far as being able to openly discuss specific MST issues. We stayed on-topic but weren't required to re-tell our trauma if we didn't want too.

During our 90-minute group session it was all "business". Now having said that....after group, if we all agreed, we would stay after, sometimes RN person would stay, sometimes she would leave...and we would just BS. Nothing still inappropriate, but we would talk about anything and even do some VA-bashing!

Still when I mentioned this format-type to the current tdoc, she actually labeled me--in front of the whole group--as an "excluder". She said I was one who is interested in excluding others from the group and this only served as a detriment to the entire group...........................................................................

......................................................................oh yes she did.

I'm telling ya' she's a piece of work. Not sure where they dug her up from.

Sorry Purple. Maybe she came from the more "Politicaly correct" group of folks. I hope you are getting therapy help in some way. Especially since you know and are willing. Stay cool and keep pushing to heal the best you can.

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Pete-

You know better than to apologize on here. We of all ppl "get it". And no, from everything I've read and researched, there is no cure for PTSD.

I'm accused of avoiding as well. I also told my tdocs that it's a survival skill--they don't get it. They somehow see it as a negative thing.

Mike-

As far as any therapy goes...this tdoc that is running this group...she's also my one-one therapist. Oh yes. So to answer your question about therapy....no, I'm not getting any therapy. I have appts every couple of weeks, but it's far from therapy.

Edited by purple (see edit history)
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Agreed, Pete and Purple! Maybe I can see that it would be nice not to have anything to avoid, maybe someone has been returned to some activity from time to time, but for me, avoidance is better than the alternative.

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