Chop wood, Carry Water

A living tree that is in the lake shallows and horizontal to the water.

The problem with telehealth therapy me.

Recently I’ve been more depressed than usual. I’ve had depression for years now, and lately, I’ve felt that maybe I have to accept that this will be my life as long as I live—Ditto with Autism and Long Covid.

While I am seeing a therapist, she’s primarily a coach and has said so. It seems to be a design of the app I get telehealth therapy from, Ginger. Since she and my previous therapist are coaches, clients are supposed to be a max of 10 visits or less.

While I am struggling with life, I’m not sure I want to continue therapy. I need things outside of it which are fulfilling such as relationships, activities, emotional support, and meaningful work.

Hi, my name is Reilly and I’m an Internet addict.

I don’t want to do Zoom or telehealth because I’m addicted to scrolling social media and spend all of my time online or watching something. I admit that I have a problem. I meet my physical needs with porn.

The only way I could stop would be to switch to a non-smartphone, get rid of my PC and laptop, and use a computer at my local library for everything else. I’ve tried to stop many times to return to my previous habits. The allure and learned behavior are too strong, and I’m helpless against it.

You know it’s bad when you don’t enjoy doing it much, but continue anyway.

For the time being, I need in-person therapy only. For the time being, the mental health place that my insurance referred me to has Zero in-person openings across multiple Seattle locations for the next week. So, call back next week to seek openings.

The problem is that there is no easy or reasonable solution to this. This addiction isn’t like, say, Heroin, where you can go to a group, and there’s a support structure. You need the internet in this world. The last time I tried to get help, the only treatment center in 2020 was $30k for a three-month plan. (Which was the only internet addiction treatment center around then.)

And then?

Say that I do get this support, then what would I do with all that time? I’d likely need to make a lot more money. The yearly cost of monthly internet service and the few subscriptions I have are incredibly cheap. I don’t buy or play video games much anymore. The rare times I do, are ones I bought before.

The total cost I pay for that is $70 a month. This doesn’t include the other ways I can view content online if you’re savvy.

I am incredibly privileged to have low rent thanks to living with my mother and being very scrupulous with money. It’s not realistic. If I paid average rent plus expenses in this area, I’d likely have to pay a minimum of an additional $1400 more each month if I lived on my own. I do not want to live with roommates. If I cut all extra expenses out of my current income, I still wouldn’t make enough. What I could cut back wouldn’t be enough. I’d have no money to go out and do anything.

It doesn’t feel like an improvement to change. All this is assuming a best-case scenario where I am set up with a therapist that meets my needs, and we get on issues right away. Which, in my experience, has been a mixed bag.

I have to do something because I’m not happy, I’m lonely, and my needs aren’t being met.

I am the only person responsible for making this happen. Despite my bitching, I’m not doing anything different. I’m choosing this lifestyle.

I’m tired of being depressed. I’m tired of hating myself.

To be fair and kind to myself, I must acknowledge that I’ve worked hard to reach this point. I’ve given it my best each day, whatever my best that day was. I’ve made extraordinary progress because I’ve hung on and not given up. I wish I were much better than I am, but this is who I am. I’m a flawed, imperfect human being with strengths and weaknesses. I am enough.

Chop wood, carry water.

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