Episode
22

Your Mom’s a Firetruck

Andrew #22
Published on
Jul 2, 2020
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In this episode...

This week, Doug and Meredith talk about the highs and lows of watching their dogs on webcams, as well as the joys of home repair, toilet hygiene, and tushie cushies. In the session, Drew connects a long standing fear of losing mom with how he tries to keep people in his life, even if it compromises or sacrifices his integrity and boundaries. In the breakdown, Doug and Meredith dive deeper into the trauma of Drew’s mother overdosing. They look at how Drew coped with it then and how those defenses are still very present for him now.

Hosts

Doug Friedman

Doug Friedman is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker that has spent nearly 20 years working with adults, adolescents and families with issues ranging from depression and anxiety to substance abuse, bipolar disorder and PTSD. He has supervised a program at a community mental health agency that serves severely emotionally disturbed youth and their families in Los Angeles. He continues to provide clinical supervision to therapists and associates in his private group practice, Clear Mind Full Heart in Los Angeles.

Doug received a Masters in Social Work from The Catholic University of America and a BA in Study of Religion from UCLA. Before becoming a psychotherapist, Doug worked for a music management company that oversaw bands like Nirvana, Foo Fighters, Beastie Boys, and Bonnie Raitt. Doug is also the artist and songwriter behind all the music heard on the podcast.

Meredith Levy

Meredith Levy is a Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist in the state of California and holds a Master’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from Antioch University. Over the last ten years she has worked with many different populations, and feels most at home working in addiction, personality disorders and mood disorders. Meredith specializes in Dialectical
Behavioral Therapy (DBT). Meredith worked with inner-city youth as a bi-lingual therapist for the Department of Mental Health in Los Angeles County. Not only has Meredith worked at a variety of different drug and alcohol treatment centers throughout California, she was also the co- founder of a large treatment facility in Northern California.

Meredith's extensive education and background as an attorney and an MBA gives her a unique perspective and a fresh approach to elevating personal growth. In addition, she is a certified yoga instructor and believes that the spiritual, physical and emotional aspects of the self are important components of the therapeutic process.

Key Takeaways

[0:23] Doug and Meredith talk about the highs and lows of watching their dogs on webcams. 

[3:15] Doug shares some excitement in his bathroom and the pride of doing repairs around the house. Meredith gets in on the joy of talking toilet hygiene and tushy comfort.

[7:47] Session begins

[9:25] Drew can feel the process of the breakup progressing and moving through him. He’s taking stock of things but still has an unfinished feeling about the relationship.

[12:35] Doug marks how Drew is creating new frames of reference by saying yes to himself and no to others.

[14:09] Doug and Drew look at the pattern of people leaving his life and not coming back, beginning with his mom.

[16:21] Drew walks us through the day he found his mom overdosed. Doug and Drew start processing his feelings and responses to the traumatic event.

[21:22] Drew revisits how he did not accept his mom’s apology at the time.  We see his pattern of avoiding, isolating, and compartmentalizing his feelings.

[23:12] Drew recognizes he’s been in relationships constantly over the last ten years, and hasn’t been on his own in a long time.

[25:41] When we know our integrity and have boundaries, we can be impenetrable. Drew felt like he lost a lot of control by not knowing his integrity well and not having boundaries in this relationship.

[30:04] Drew connects the long standing fear of losing his mom with trying to keep people in his life, even if it compromises or sacrifices his sense of self. 

[36:40] Drew recalls a couple childhood experiences of embarrassment and shame related to mom’s substance abuse. Doug helps Drew see how he took mom’s issues on himself and still feels guilt for not controlling her illness, her choices, and the consequences.

[41:41] Drew wants to get the memories of his childhood correct and not let his feelings alter the facts. Doug acknowledges this and is more focused on how Drew is impacted today by the memories and emotions he holds rather than what actually happened in the past.

[39:14] Session ends. Breakdown begins

[41:08] Doug and Meredith highlight how Drew is plugging himself back into life after having compromised his integrity in the relationship.

[42:43] We are not just one person, we are ever changing and growing beings. Drew is going through some of that growth and change as he strengthens his sense of self.

[45:25] Meredith digs into the concept of abandonment.

[47:14] Doug talks about how and why it was natural at this point in therapy to dive deeper into the trauma of Drew’s mother overdosing. They look at how he coped and how his defenses are still very present for him now.

[53:05] Doug uses the Matrix to highlight how we’re impenetrable when you know your integrity and have boundaries - that bullets can touch you, you don’t even have to dodge them!

[56:06] Doug acknowledges how Drew is holding on to an old story of “it’s my fault” for not being good enough or not being there.

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