Dear Dr. Archer,
If only I were able to tell you my story using the itsy, bitsy, indefinite area provided on your website, I would have saved thousands of dollars in psych co-payments, prescriptions, numerous inpatient hospitalizations and, lest I not forget, a few appearances in front of a judge or two due to my anger. LOL. Sorry, Dr. Archer. Impossible!
I'll work on my story at my own pace and do a cut and paste later. I guess you hear, "My story is soooo unique!" all the time, which emphasizes my plea for your help. Well, so is mine. Dr. Archer, I truly hope this message is actually received by you and not a psych intern who sifts through your messages.
Don't get me wrong -- I used to be a psych intern. I have a B.A. in Psychology and an M.A. in Community Counseling, and I know the assistance they provide -- an invaluable relationship for the good of the order.
I respect the work you're doing and believe that through your direction, you'll provide a gift that keeps on giving. How likely is it that I could speak and/or schedule an appointment to meet with you?
My story...... In 1997 I was 20 years old, and my brother who was 17 shot and killed my father, a Capitol police officer as he slept. In 2007 my mother and I found my other, 34 year old brother, dead, in his apartment.
He had committed suicide. I can't believe I was able to sum up my tragic life in several sentences, give or take some good and bad, funny and sad things in between.
Dr. Archer, I need your assistance because I'm stuck. I do not have children; I live in an apartment with my cat, Zion.
First, let me offer my deepest condolences in regards to the loss of your father and brother. I also want to assure you that I read and answer each and every letter that is approipriate.
I do have a team to help me out with the screening, data collection and writing/editing, BUT nothing goes up without my personal approval.
To lose your father to your brother's hand, and then to lose your brother no doubt caused a whole range of emotions within, including sadness, anger, grief and disbelief.
Your brother was a tormented soul, Melissa, most likely suffering depression and probably psychosis as well. The first thing you must do is forgive him.
The next thing is to understand that in cases like this family members often blame themselves for no reason. This has nothing to do with you and is not your fault in any way!
Here are some specifics:
Forgive. Don't blame him, because he was not in his right mind. His life was no doubt a jumbled torment. Forgiveness is divine - do it now.
Closure. I believe in the power of words. I also believe that sometimes when we write things down and look at it, we can see things more clearly. Write a letter to your dad and then write one to your brother. A heartfelt letter, expressing how you feel about them can better help you come to terms with what happened.
Honor. You undoubtedly loved your father and your brother dearly. Remember the good times you had with them both. Talk about them with your mom, who might also be still tormented, as well.
Mental illness is real and it can be severe and at times tragic, don’t let your past dictate your future - you msut rise above this and you can do it - I know you can.
As for being your doctor, you need to find someone where you live that you can see on a regular basis. Unfortunately due to my work on the book and work in media I no longer have the time to accept new patients.
Find someone you like and trust and then work with them closely. I sincerely hope you find peace and security. All the best.