Dealing With Diagnosis Beyond the Labels

darlene ouimet blog talk radio
Darlene Ouimet CTACC

This past week I did an internet radio Broadcast on Blog Talk Radio with Susan Kingsley-Smith from Empowering Solutions.

It was a really good show and the feedback has been fantastic!  We talked for 40 minutes about emotional healing starting off with my “in a nut shell account” about where it all started, the history of my depressions and dissociative disorders which were diagnosed several different ways by several different doctors and mental health workers. Susan contributes some of her history as well.

The bulk of the conversation is about where the solutions actually came from and the process of how I took my life back. I talk about the commonality that I discovered between myself and the people that I was speaking to in mental health seminars, which made me realize that everyone of us had very similar roots when it came to ending up being in some type of emotional or mental health struggle.  Realizing that the roots of depressions and dissociative disorders were cemented in various types of trauma including never having my personal value established in childhood, inspired me to dig deeper into understanding diagnosis beyond the labels.

Susan and I talk a little bit about how I realized through my own emotional healing process that the conclusions that I had come to in my childhood, as a result of trauma and mistreatment had formed a false belief system and that I operated through that false belief system.  It was in realizing the lies that I believed about myself and setting those beliefs straight, that I was able to take my life back and that was how I overcame all those constant depressions and dissociative disorders. Susan shares some of her journey as well and she concurs with my discoveries.

My self esteem soars today.  I am told that you can hear my confidence and recovery on the replay of this radio show! So I wanted to share this radio conversation with you. This is a chance to HEAR my voice after reading my voice for so long.

Please feel free to come back here and post your comments and feedback to Susan and I about this Blog talk Radio podcast replay.

Living in wholeness and freedom!

Darlene Ouimet

Listen Live  ~ Dealing with Diagnosis with Darlene Ouimet

Join us on the Emerging from Broken Facebook page


29 response to "Dealing With Diagnosis Beyond the Labels"

  1. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 26th July

    Hi Libby; I can related to what you describe…what I found for myself is that by using various tools to process through the feelings that were bubbling to the surface I actually just gradually went through vs resisting which I found to sort of draw out the process. This was the sort of organic process that I followed once I understood a few basics about expressing vs stuffing what came up. And often…it wasn’t specific memories but a feeling or sense that needed to be acknowledged.

    I hope that helps Libby:)

  2. By: Libby Posted: 26th July

    I just started my journey after a serious illness last year caused the lid on pandora’s box to be blown wide open. I now know I have been suffering from PTSD for most of my life. Whatever – I am now getting good help.
    One of the things I struggle with is the not knowing – so much of my memory is repressed – some has surfaced as flashbacks, and some things I can now make sense of. I accept I may never remember al that happened to me, and understand why, but… There is always that but, isn’t there? I am sleeping badly – waking at odd times for no reason. Partly I know I still experience hyper-vigilence. But last night I woke my husband by grabbing him in a strong embrace – he got the impression I was terrified. Ihave no recollection of this, or of dreaming at all last night. But I was awake at 3.30 and couldn’t get back to sleep. I don’t know why – but I wanted to get up and get busy – I wasn’t aware of being anxious , but I was unable to settle back to sleep. Today, I have other physical symptoms which I associate with strong emotion – fear or anger, etc. But I don’t “know” why.
    The only way I can explain this to myself is that some more memory is surfacing, but I am not quite ready to deal with it – waht do you think? Anyone got any thing else to suggest? Experience to explain this? I’d be grateful to anyone who can shed some light on this.

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 27th July

      Hi Libby
      There could be some stuff coming up for you. I don’t have all my memories yet, but things like what you describe happen when something is trying to come to the surface. In the beginning of this process, I worked with what I did remember to figure out and take a look at what happened to me, the damage it caused and the conclusions/beliefs that I developed about myself and my worth because of that damage. That was where I found the keys to freedom. (and I no longer have nightmares)
      I like that you are ready to deal with it.. that is the main thing.
      Hugs, Darlene

  3. By: Barbara Posted: 10th July

    “The ways that I was treated and not treated, communicated to me that I was not really a valid person”

    this is one of the MOST POWERFUL Things I have ever read. Thank you Darlene

  4. By: joy Posted: 7th June

    Susan and Darlene

    I appreciate all you are saying and I read all you say.. am trying to internalize everything. its a slow process..some days i think i got it . .then someone or something comes along. and I find out i dont completely got it.

    I know trust is going to be the key to overcoming alot and that has really become a challenge for me. .Everyone I have trusted. who said the were caring and taking interest in me of late has hurt me. Up to finding my T and all you good people. Am learning just because someone says they care doesnt mean they do.. I just have to develop a sense to know who is really trustworthy.

    I know my judgement on this realm is not good yet so am reading here and being guided by my very good and patient therapist..

    I have very little self confidence.. i guess it will come with time .

    i thank you all for all your testimonies, your good example. and patience..


  5. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 7th June

    You are very welcome Joy; I’m glad you are here and grateful that you feel that you can share. This is how we support and help each other to grow…by sharing our stories:)

    The honest to gosh truth of it Joy; is that my process was very much similar to Darlenes and what she writes about here on EFB; once I broke through and started recognizing the thoughts and feelings today of being unworthy as having originated from those who needed me to be less than in order for them to be more than me – I no longer had to tell myself I was worthy as I began to believe it, be it and live it. And I so understand about the faith people you talk about as I was in an abusive church that did the same or similar to me.

    I guess I”m just saying that as we are doing here is how this happens for many of us; for me writing in my journal then my blog…and now we have forums like this one where we can just tell our story without fear or shame. This is the process Joy; we each learn to trust it and find the path that works best for us. Its great to see you finding yours:)

  6. By: joy Posted: 7th June

    PS @Susan .

    thank you for all your kind words


  7. By: joy Posted: 7th June

    Hi Susan

    The idea of being unworthy is something i was taught both by family and faith system.. taught not worthy because in all their reality ..i wasnt suppose to be …so says mom.I feel so sorry for her..that she didnt want me .and has to know am alive somewhere.. but i cannot stop being alive.. i feel sorry that i wasnt conceived in love but in another unloving way. i wish i could take that back for her but i cannot ..

    then faith people drilled in my own unworthiness.i remember how we were denied baptism for so long.. then of course that i wasnt worthy to be healed i was told to keep silent..

    believing am taking some time but am working on it.


  8. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 7th June

    Joy; we ARE worthy. Without justification explanation or defense. Just because we exist we are worthy of all the good things this life has to offer.

    I”m so sorry you experienced those things and me too; my own life experiences were very similar. What I found was that in this process of learning to recognize the lies that told me I was worthless, powerless and that left me feeling hopeless….I discovered I was able to finally understand that I just am. and that I’m ok. Its good to see you working through some of this stuff:) Thanks for sharing and growing with us:)

  9. By: joy Posted: 6th June

    Dear Susan..

    Thank you for all your words. I guess its best to allow myself ot experience all the will get better. I am kind of same way with not being good / trustworht to myself as I will go a million miles for someone else but wont go a mile for me. Its because to brainwsashings..the faith based one that stressed forgetting me and the home based one that didnt even acknowledge me by name . I was always called some adjective about me but not my name..its so good to see or hear my name instead of things like : worst mistake, hopeless, stupid.. and some other things i care not to put in print ..

    I tell myself I deserve to be loved that am good etc. as part of some therapy homework and dont you know all those ancient voices of the past are shouting the opposite at me. so am fighting to stay positive.


  10. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 6th June

    Thank you Joy; writing has become a way for me to express what I couldn’t say until I found my voice. Those pages are static ie not regular posts. Let me know if you have trouble with that.

    Holding onto the hope and imaging being free carried me many days along the way Joy.

    I understand those deeper fears; I learned that by making sure I honored all my thoughts and fears instead of judging them – it was easier to begin to let them go. After all – I’d not been trustworthy to myself; how could I? I’d been trained to sacrifice “me” to anyone and anything outside of myself. I began first honoring my fears and acknowledging the thoughts that told me I was less than by learning to tell myself I’d done the best I could for a very long time…and that now I could learn to do it differently.

    The mix of emotions settles down; it took some time:) Hang in there Joy:) Writing was my best friend as I pieced myself back together:)

  11. By: joy Posted: 6th June


    I loved your version of I Believed, you write so beautifully.. I didnt see if there was a way I could comment on your blog..

    .. i wish I was to that point that I could trust enough to lean into the wind and fly..

    the how dare you still very much alive in me. . and the last letter included “dont you dare go tell you therapist this too” so I am still getting my littler ordrs.

    I am really feeling a whole mix of emotions today . i dont know why but feel so much like a traitor. i have been trying to keep positive youtubes playing.. but some things stick in you. … I want to do right.


  12. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 6th June

    @Joy…I so understand the confusion you describe. What I discovered is that discomfort at starting to not listen to the lies about being less than and not good enough – that is where I was either growing or staying the same if I thought the pain was telling me “how dare you”…and the lies running through my being did try to keep me there. What I found is that this is the beginning baby steps; following the fear, doubt, grief and sadness right over the edge where when I stepped off and opened my arms to fly…I realized I was both letting go of the lies, the bad feelings, the eternal pain AND at the same time – I was opening my arms to embrace the “me” that had been there but buried to be kept safe. The key was to find a tiny space each day where I could do this and over time – it became “me”. I have a poem at my Blog called “I Believed”….and another called “Haiku”. These poems really tell my story; if you’d like to read them you can go here – they are tabs at the top of the page:

    I’m so sorry you are experiencing such pain; journaling and poetry for me became a way to process through very often through out my journey when I couldn’t express myself to others. This work took a lot out of me energy wise; resting when I became weary from the work became a nice way to begin to believe I deserved good things:)

  13. By: joy Posted: 6th June

    Susan . .

    I sometimes don’t know if my feeling less than is from all the belittling or from the brainwashing that told me that I should think myself nothing.. It has become so much a part of me its hard to accept to believe its good to think myself someone. its like ” how dare I think I am someone ” .. I have so much going on . .I hoping i can get it all sorted …am one big big mess . Despite it all .. all my confussion about me I want so much to love everyone .. i want so much to help people.. to be there for those who hurt.. somehow I have to understand get it in me. that its ok to think a little more of me.

  14. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 6th June

    @Ultralite…I really appreciate what you say about journaling through the program….this was one of my own tools in my journey. I found it a really helpful thing to do that helped me contain much more new information than just in reading or listening alone. I think I learned that in college as a study skill and adapted it to my healing journey:)

    And yes yes! That spark sounds like “hope”…the beginning of seeing that light at the end of the tunnel that had been so evasive to me for so long. Hope is what kept me going when I felt like I was walking blind and often led to me the places where a little light would shine through the darkness and guide me to the next ray of light. And today – I live in abundant sunshine and love my new life! So yes; the heart is the place of hope, understanding and love!

  15. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 6th June

    @Joy; I well remember that place of confusion you describe and I’m sorry you are in such pain. And from experience I can say that this for me was part of that awakening to the the truth and that by going through THIS pain – I could possible get out of the pain that had crippled me for a lifetime that left me feeling “less than” as I doubted and questioned everything about myself. It has been a journey but – I’m finally moving forward in my journey instead of in circles:) And this is where I began to find my power – by starting to ask myself what I liked, what I wanted….baby steps in all things and some days it seemed like I was growing in leaps and bounds but I finally began moving forward and away from the the things that made me feel so bad. I’m so glad to be on this new path:) It is much less painful to go through the pain than to be stuck in it:)

  16. By: Lee Posted: 5th June

    Hi Darlene,

    I just listened to your radio show and it was fantastic. What a great gift it was to me, technology is my enemy most times but not today:) It was really great to hear the words the three of you said but It was also great to hear your voice. Reading words is very different from hearing a voice. So thanks for doing what you do.

    Question: What kind of therapy or program did you follow/use when you were on your path to discovering your beliefs? I am really wanting to look at mine and can’t figure out how to start.

    Thanks a million, I would really love to meet you some day:) I live just outside Vancouver, BC. If you ever get this way it would be a real honor to meet you and chat.

    Take care,

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 6th June

      Hi Lee
      I went to a therapist that uses the model of “causal therapy” or root cause therapy. Then I went to professional coaching school and studied under a psychiatrist and because I was speaking in mental health seminars and eventually worked in MH support I paid close attention to “NOT counselling” clients but to still have impact on their recovery. I was hand picked with only 10 other students, to participate in a special coaching program with that same psychiatrist to study a program he had developed for coaching “living a new life story” by changing the beliefs that are cemented in the brain… and I combined what I learned in therapy about the “roots” of where the belief system started and the “living a new life story” training. And here I am. 🙂

      About where to start; I started in therapy with the first trauma memory. I looked at all the details about what happened and then what I believed about myself because of what happened. That was when I first realized some of the lies I believed and how I blamed myself as young as even 2 years old. As soon as one light went on, then more started to come on. The first discovery gave me hope and kept me going. It takes a while, it doesn’t happen over night. And I didn’t need to examine every trauma memory in therapy either. I journaled a lot on my own and did a lot of my own work.

      Glad you liked the radio program. I am going to join Susan once a month (the third Thursday of each month at 2:00 pm EST) and we are going to take a look at various subjects.

      Hugs, Darlene

  17. By: Dolores Ayotte Posted: 4th June

    Hi Darlene,
    It was great to hear your voice. Congratulations on the great interview! I agree with you. It’s harder to live with the pain than it is to face the fear of what’s causing it. Learning this is part of the healing process. Enjoy your weekend!

  18. By: Ultralite Posted: 4th June

    Darlene and Susan — My mission this weekend is to journal my way through your program once again — thank you both so much for sharing! As Joy said, your conversation was so good and encouraging — and offers such hope for healing and truly changed lives. Susan, I’m with you — realizing my life had been built on lies is incredibly difficult to face. Yet somehow, after listening to you both, I’ve found the tiniest kernel of (? insert word here), the eensy-est bit of a spark — is this perhaps hope? I’m feeling it in here (anatomical location somewhere near my heart). . . 🙂

    Thank you again for speaking out, speaking up — I hope everyone will take the time to listen to — and hear — what you have to say. . .

    And, Darlene: What does CTACC stand for? ‘Tis a mystery…

    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 5th June

      Hi Ultralite,
      What a great idea to listen and take notes and journal about it. I have a passion for inspiring hope, in fact when I first decided to do this work it was because I wanted to inspire hope for healing.
      CTACC stands for CTA is the school that certified me and CC is “certified coach”.
      Hugs, Darlene

      Hi Dolores,
      Thank you for listening and commenting!
      Hugs, Darlene

  19. By: joy Posted: 4th June

    @ Susan:

    Exactly. .who am I . .am a person who has been created by mistake not wanted all my life schoold by a bunch of lies. .who am I ? that is a super big question that leaves me a big puddle of tears. who am . .I .

    I find it helpful what you said about asking what I like. .and you know am so brainwashed i am afraid to even think I can like something. .having the choice to choose.. and thinking about all i have .. and have done is just like you said ..other peoples wants and likes. its scary thinking i can choose.. but nice to think about what I like .. seems to me I need to make some changes if I am going to consider things I like. .what a wonderful sharing of information you put here, Susan..

    I have never held much power in my life. everything i ever did revolved around others having power over me as . i never felt worthy of anything. that i was merely here to serve others and suffer what ever was mine to suffer in silence.

    Will take some time to think about what I like 😉

    THank you so much, Susan..your answer means so much to me..


  20. By: joy Posted: 4th June

    HI Darlene

    Oh I am so glad you cleared that up and that I havent crossed over the line to “crazy” yet.. although I have some pretty peculiar syptoms 😉

    I like how you said “I realized that I was already in pain. So what the heck!” THinking of it that way . it makes so much pain.. I think the pain I have been through was worse i ever knew and the present pain of brokenness will give way as I heal…just afraid of the unknown.. a bit..

    I know the journey is worth it but getting on that plane is always scary.. no? ..

    THank you so much for all you do, for being caring .. for taking time with all us . .hugs.


  21. By: Susan Kingsley-Smith Posted: 4th June

    @Joy…I feel grateful to be a part of this community and so relate to and appreciate all you have to say. Realizing my life had been built on lies was a difficult thing to face; like you – if I wasn’t that awful person…who was I? It was in learning to grieve those losses and in placing the blame with those who’d hurt and lied to me that I began to heal. And as I healed I learned to listen to myself – that inner voice, that light that we all have but was silenced in the trauma. And as I listened…I knew that where I could start was in learning to ask myself what I liked, what I didn’t like and what I wanted. In the past – I”d not had choices or at least I didn’t know I had choices. So I started with simple things like what colors do I like, what coffee flavors do I like…and I realized that much of what was my life were things that were there because its what others liked for me. In doing this, I began to realize the power that I held within myself to create the “me” that I wanted to be while at the same time grieving the “me” that never got to be. Thank you for your kind words about the ES program…SusanKs:)

  22. By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 4th June

    Hi Joy,
    I just noticed that I replied to you in the wrong post! (so I took that one off and posted my reply here above) sorry for the confusion! You are not crazy!

    About the fear of what it will take to get “repaired”. I was so afraid of the pain, and then I realized that I was already in pain. So what the heck?? LOL

    I can assure you that the pain in recovery was not as bad as the fear of facing it. Not even close. AND there is freedom on the other side! So totally worth taking the journey!

    Hugs, Darlene

  23. By: joy Posted: 4th June

    Hi Darlene:

    Somehow I saw this answer on other page then not so am pasting my answer here too..sorry ..its like magic seems whole post disappeared. ;)lol

    Thank you for encouraging me ..and for understanding. I am in and
    out of the not knowing zone..i am confused yet see some things clearly. When I see the truth I become angry about it all then became angry at me for being angry..Its such a terrible mess I am in right now. My life revolved around that belief system. everythng! . it’s all been wrong all lies.. I am afraid of how broken I am , how misled I have been..afraid of the what I have to do now to get fixed. ..I am the only one who sees it as lies.. so no one in my family understands me. THey all accept it still and see me as being in sin for having left that way..Its so very hard.


  24. By: joy Posted: 4th June


    Everything you said in your radio broadcast was so good and encouraging. Hearing you speak gave me courage that I may some day be healed of all my brokenness. Much of what you said struck home. It is good to hear the compassion coming out in your means so much more having a voice to associate with the writing. Thank you for all you do. I hope I get there. where I feel am more than what others have said. Right now am finding it hard knowing I wasted so many years. in a belief system that fed me so many lies. I am wondering who I am if what I was formed in was lies. Thank for your encouraging words…and thanks to Susan too.


    • By: Darlene Ouimet Posted: 4th June

      Hi Joy,
      I went through many stages on this healing journey, and I am sure I will go through many more transitions etc. and one of the big ones was the grieving process that you are speaking of in your comment. I went through several of them including feeling so angry and hurt that I had “wasted so many years” in a system with all those lies. BUT, one day I realized that I had the rest of my life! I am not asking you to think in terms of “the rest of your life” yet, because you will realize that when you are ready but I want to encourage you that you are ON the journey. Grieving anything, the lack of relationship with parents, the loss of childhood, etc. is all part of the healing and all very good and positive in the end and towards the end result! SO.. YAY. It’s all good!

      Thank you for your lovely feedback about the radio show! Hugs, Darlene

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.