In my opinion, the most brazenly arrogant statement a person can ever make is “If I can do it, anyone can do the same.”
So I thought I should make clear that my posts on using self-therapy and IFS are not intended to say to people that because I am doing it, they can do it too. In fact, that attitude is completely in contradiction with IFS. In IFS it is acknowledged that, while there are similarities between people’s parts, each person has a different background and has parts that have responded to their personal trauma in ways that others’ parts have not.
Just because I am doing IFS this way and—mostly—succeeding that does not mean everyone else can do the same. Practicing self-therapy is difficult. It’s one of the more difficult things I’ve done in my life. In the beginning I told people it was fairly simple, because I was a little excited about it. The further I go and the more I learn, however, I realize that I cannot promise others the same result I have experienced.
My background is entirely different from yours. Maybe I am somewhat successful because I have already been through years of fruitless therapy. Maybe it’s because I have always found some way to work around my problems. Maybe it’s because I am a research junkie so I didn’t stop at one chapter or one YouTube video, I studied on and still study on. Maybe I’m just desperate. Whatever the reason, maybe others who have had the 5/5 trauma level life I have lived for half a century would have a more difficult time.
That said, I am aware that most people who are in need of therapy are in the same predicament I am, they do not have money for such an important thing. They may barely have enough money for rent. IFS therapy, like all therapies, costs upwards off $200 per session across the country. There are no clinics. In the US, therapy is a luxury item—just like insulin and an epi-pen and cancer treatment.
If that is your case, then I would say that IFS is your best bet. The resources are relatively inexpensive and, if you put a lot of time and effort into understanding it, you could do well with it. IFS is not difficult to understand.
The problems arise, I think, when we are confronted by extreme parts. For example, I have a feeling that if I had asked an IFS trained therapist before I started if I should work with my suicidal part by myself, they would have said absolutely not. But I did it, because I had no choice. And I have not had a suicidal thought for nearly two months now. That after 40 years of daily struggle.
I hope my posts will be helpful to those who want to have the perspective of someone doing this completely on their own. But they are in now way meant to shame people into thinking that their path will be the same as mine.