Mental Illness Is A Thief.

I once wrote a list of positives about myself…. I have that list in front of me… I don’t remember when I wrote it, but I can only assume I was in a better state of mind, as I’d find it hard to say many good things about myself at the moment.

Here’s what I wrote:

 

  • I am sensitive to the feelings of others.
  • I have a good heart.
  • I am approachable.
  • I am honest and trustworthy.
  • I am protective of those I care about.
  • I am creative.
  • I have a good sense of humour.
  • I am respectful to people and animals and the world alike.
  • I have good morals.
  • I don’t let people down.
  • I say what I mean and I mean what I say.
  • Even if I sometimes doubt it, I am mentally strong – I’m still standing.
  • I like my own company.
  • I don’t need anyone else to complete me.
  • I enjoy the freedom of being alone.
  • I am a reserved person. I save my best for those who earn it.
  • I take the time to care about others.
  • I am polite.
  • I am capable of learning.
  • I am thoughtful.
  • I am not too proud to apologise or ask for help.
  • I am understanding.
  • I am down-to-earth.
  • I have good taste in music.
  • I may not have much but I have a lot to offer.

 

 

 

Mental illness robs you of many of those things. It also robs you of the ability to see any good in you, even when it is still there. That’s when you need your friends to remind you of who you are. I had a friend say to me just yesterday some of the good things about me. I may not believe them all, but hearing it does help… if for no other reason than to know they don’t all hate me!

 

When I look at the list, there are some things I feel remain – good taste in music, creative, sense of humour – these tend to be a constant. Other things are subject to change… for instance I do let people down… I’m not that approachable anymore… I don’t always take the time to care about others… I’m not always understanding, though I try my best to understand the motives and feelings of others.

 

The reality is that when you’re ill certain parts of you close off. You can’t be the person you’ve always been, because you’re fighting a battle nobody else knows about. The worst thing that can happen is for someone to judge you on who you are as a result of mental ill health. It makes you think that’s who you are as a person.

 

I received a message from a friend the other day which threw into turmoil my image of myself. Those of us with BPD struggle with a sense of who we are at the best of times…. It made me feel like I’m a terrible person. It created chaos in me, because everything said to me was a misinterpretation and misunderstanding of me, my words and behaviour. So whilst I was showing certain positive qualities (in my mind at least!), they twisted it into me showing all the worst qualities they could think of. And the trouble with someone like me, is that others’ opinions of me become MY opinion of me. I think if one person thinks something, others must too, and therefore it must be true.

 

They may not have said the words, but the words they did say painted a picture of me as a selfish, controlling bitch. Instead of seeing me as someone in huge emotional pain, traumatised, mentally ill and doing the best I could to survive… alone, they warped the truth and made me the ‘bad guy’.

 

Part of me was furious with them and thought what a horrible person they are and how much I hate them. But the rest of me took it as a reflection of ME. If I’m not all the bad things my friend thinks I am, then I must at least come across that way, either because of my illness or because I don’t communicate my reality correctly.

 

They were upset with me for blogging about them, as they interpreted it in a negative way, not as intended. And they asked if I could understand how that would feel…. yes, I do understand. And my initial reaction was that I should blog about what an awful person I am. Even though my blog was not about attacking them, and was actually about explaining that my own mind (my illness) is the problem – therefore I was effectively taking the blame (even though mental illness is not my fault!) …. they interpreted it as me blaming them and painting them in a bad light. So to ‘even it up’, in their mind at least, I felt I should tell you all how damn awful I am…. even though I already know that, and I’m constantly putting myself down for having an illness! Here you go:

 

  • I am a bad friend.
  • I don’t deserve friendship, happiness or love.
  • I’m too honest.
  • I’m selfish.
  • I’m messed up.
  • I’m manipulative.
  • I’m attention-seeking.
  • I’m a bitch.
  • I’m too demanding.
  • I’m a Debbie Downer.
  • I’m boring.
  • I’m lazy.
  • I’m a failure.
  • I’m a bitter, angry, resentful person.
  • I’m unforgiving.
  • I’m immature.
  • I’m clueless about real life and real problems.
  • I’m nasty.
  • I deserve pain.
  • I don’t deserve to live.
  • I’m hateful.
  • I’m a drama-queen.
  • I’m fat and ugly.
  • I’m stupid.
  • I’m an embarrassment to know.
  • I’m a terrible person.

 

This is the list I feel my friend would want me to remind myself of. At a time when I need reminding of my good qualities, they only want to make me think bad things about myself. Even if it’s unintentional, the way they talk to me illustrates their opinions of me.

 

But I look at this list, and as much as it came to me a lot quicker and easier than a positive one ever could, deep down I know it’s not the truth. Some of it is. I am fat and ugly, I am too honest and at present I am rather hate-filled. But most other things are as a result of my illness. Some of them aren’t even true then – it would just be an opinion of someone uneducated. I appear selfish, manipulative, attention-seeking, lazy, a bitch and a drama-queen, because I have a mental illness that has taken over and is close to winning. But I am none of those things. I do know that.

 

Whilst I feel like a terrible person and at present I question my original list about the ‘having a good heart’, I know what my intentions are. A lot of people may think bad things about me and my motives. Just as my friend interpreted my blog as me attacking them, rather than explaining my illness to them, other people probably think I’m a certain type of person. If my friend thinks I’m selfish, heartless and controlling then I’d like to say this…..

 

You’re wrong. I have a heart and you bloody broke it. While I might not appear to care about others, I care about them sometimes more than I care about myself. I have a lot of compassion and empathy. It may not seem it, but I AM capable of putting myself in others’ shoes… something they seem unable to do with me. I try my best to understand others whilst they don’t even try to understand me and my illness. I am aware of people having their own lives and stresses – I’m not selfish… but being in distress can make me seem that way, like I’m ignorant to the existence of others’ lives. I worry about them and show concern for them, whilst they just attack me and make me feel like a burden. I take my time to consider my responses to people…. I don’t want to hurt people. People don’t seem to do the same for me. They all just react. I’m actually a very reasonable person, where others without my illness seem to be the unreasonable ones. I will apologise when I hurt people – none of them do it for me. Even if they’re the ones who owe me an apology, they just double down on the hurt or give a false apology, whereas I feel genuine guilt, shame and remorse and am genuinely sorry (and I’m the one with BPD!). I am thoughtful, considerate and to some degree kind. Even if people hurt me, I’ll still send cards, I’ll still send thoughts on anniversaries, I’ll still try my best not to let their bitterness towards me change who I am at my core. I still try my best to be gentle even when hurt. It’s difficult though.

 

So whilst people are out there thinking bad things about me, I am here, hurt by their low opinions of me…. their misunderstandings of me and who I really am. The only reason I appear to show more of the qualities from the second list than the first, is because I am unwell. I’ve always been unwell – I just used to be able to hide it better. I’d wear a mask for everyone, even my best friend. After my granddad died last year my mental health deteriorated, and after a breakdown at therapy a year ago I’ve lost control. With being abandoned and isolating myself this year it’s just got worse and worse, until I can no longer hide how I’m feeling. I can’t wear the mask. I suppose if you were a fan of using the words ‘high-functioning’ and ‘low-functioning’, I’ve always been high-functioning…. now not so much. Now I’m a lot lower-functioning and my illness is plain to see…. except to those who refuse to see it as an illness. They will just think I’ve become a bitch. Thank God for those who see it for what it is and still believe in me. Thank you to those people. ❤

 

I am many of those things on that first list… inside. I wish I could show them on the outside again, because where I don’t, people think I’ve changed – I haven’t. I just can’t express the good as loudly as the bad is screaming from me. It then makes people treat me differently, which makes my illness worse and makes me feel worse about myself.

 

It is SO important if you know someone with a mental illness, to never treat them differently because of their illness, or to blame them for how they are. How they appear to you may not be how they feel inside. You need to remind them of the good in them, because mental illness is a thief, and an illusionist… it plays tricks on the mind, whilst stealing the good. It’s not the fault of the person with the illness. We never asked to be ill, and we likely hate ourselves enough, without feeling you hate us too.

 

I may not like who I am right now. I may not be able to confidently state to the world who I am and make a list…. but I DO know who I am at my core. And when people try and misrepresent me it frustrates and upsets me. But they’re not my concern. Let them think what they like. I’ve lost people in the past because they chose to stick by their false opinions of me, rather than admitting they were wrong, or trying to understand my illness. I don’t say this in a big-headed way, as I don’t actually think much of myself currently, but… ‘It’s their loss’. If people want to lose me because of their inability to listen and understand my illness, and because of the qualities they lack, then so be it. I shouldn’t have to explain myself to them. They should know who I am.

 

I struggle enough to hold on to who I am. I don’t need people gaslighting me.

 

One day I hope to rediscover the good qualities in me… those I listed, and hopefully more. But right now I just have to exist with my reality and try not to hate myself any more than I already do. I know some very nice and wise people would say to cut myself some slack… to not be so hard on myself. They’re right. It’s not easy but I have to try and block out other people’s opinions of me and forgive myself for being too ill to be the true me. Hopefully it’ll return in time.

 

xxxx

Am I Broken?

I had a serious meltdown on Monday night and as a result made my blog private, and decided not to blog anymore. I was severely hurt. I have since decided not to let anyone shut down my voice. Yes I may change my manner of blogging if possible, but I’m only speaking my truth. Mental illness has become my life this year, not by choice. It’s been a battle to survive. My blog is my way of explaining my thought processes and the challenges I face with this illness. Nothing is ever done maliciously. I simply say things as I see them, from the perspective of having a mental illness and experiencing a mental breakdown. You see the world completely differently during a breakdown. I think you’d all acknowledge that. I report on what I’m experiencing and what my perception of reality is – not to hurt anyone, but rather to explain why I act the way I do… to explain that I’m paranoid and believing things that may not be true. If people take offence at that then it shows a lack of interest in even trying to understand my illness and how I feel. The aim has always been to explain so as not to be misunderstood, and so that people know why I’m behaving how I am, and at times this has failed epically and left me even more misunderstood. But this is a failing on the part of those who refuse to try and understand. I’ve tried to make people understand, if they still can’t then unfortunately it’s not my problem.

 

I have decided to continue my blog, as those with a mental illness know where I’m coming from and what I’m saying – and that after all is the whole purpose of this blog. That and challenging stigma – and what I have faced recently is stigma in my opinion.

 

Before the thing that caused my breakdown on Monday night I had been at the theatre at a comedy show…. I had intended to write about it when I got home, as it was the most peculiar experience I’ve had lately, but I got distracted by even worse things…

 

But anyway, I was anxious about going to this show, as I hardly go out anymore –  especially to anything big like that. I went with a family member. I had already felt reluctant about going, as I’ve had such a horrible year and my mental health is that bad that I felt I wouldn’t enjoy it. To some degree I was right…

 

It was hard to understand what he was saying, as he speaks so fast, with an accent too… so I missed a fair few bits. I also have a back problem, so found it difficult to sit for a long time. By the break I was desperate to stand up…. so the second half was particularly painful, I still couldn’t always hear him… and then he brought up Brexit. He lost me after that. I don’t find it amusing to laugh at and attack something I voted for which politicians are on the cusp of betraying. I don’t like lefty luvvies making fun of my vote for entertainment purposes or their own virtue-signalling purposes. So, I kind of switched off at that point, and no matter how hard I tried after that to reconnect, I couldn’t find anything he said funny enough to laugh at it.

 

I became very aware that I was sat in a room full of hundreds of people laughing their heads off, and I felt very disconnected from it all. It’s like I was there but not a part of it. I kept trying to get myself to focus on the show and the jokes, but my mind had already wandered off. And my illness had taken over.

 

I felt like I was broken. Faulty. Damaged. I started thinking all these things I’ve planned for next year – if I’m this ill I’m not going to enjoy them. I don’t feel able to enjoy anything anymore. Even when I went and saw the fireworks at the start of the month, I felt detached. Walking to see them, alongside everyone else making their way there, I thought ‘It can’t be fireworks again already… it doesn’t feel like that time of year’. Probably because I have hidden away for most of the year so missed a lot of the seasons…. I can’t believe it’s Christmas again in a month… the second one without my granddad. I don’t feel in that sort of spirit because of my mental health, the problems I’m having and because the year has just disappeared. I’m going to try and make the best of Christmas, in that I want it to be a peaceful Christmas.

 

But I feel so disconnected from life that even fun events feel like ‘going through the motions’ and pretending. I don’t get the same joy from them at the moment. So I went away from it having not enjoyed it, not finding it that funny, and feeling very pensive. I thought there was only one thing that could finish off the day in style – a horrible message from someone…. sure as hell that’s what I got when I got home 11.30pm. Then the proverbial hit the fan and I ended up on the phone to the Samaritans at 1am.

 

I won’t say any more about that in this post. This is more about that feeling of being disconnected from the world around you – it’s something I’ve felt all year to some degree. It has only got worse over time. My family are real. But any interactions outside of that don’t feel real. Anything that happens around me is as though it’s happening whilst I’m in an invisible bubble, just watching. I even hear myself saying words and sometimes don’t feel I’m in control of saying them.

 

I don’t laugh at things the same. At home I might, but not elsewhere. I feel I can’t let go of everything that’s happened in the last couple of years…. I can’t just let go and have fun anymore. I’ve spent most days suicidal. It’s hard to truly experience the feelings of happiness and enjoyment when you’re still in that state of mind. Will I ever find things funny again? Will I ever be able to genuinely smile and enjoy being around people again? Will I ever live one day like a normal person and not secretly be wanting to end my own life? It doesn’t feel like it.

 

Monday evening was when I realised how broken and ill I am. I was later attacked by someone who refuses to understand that illness. So I have to put myself first, understand my own illness and not beat myself up for having it.  I don’t know how to connect with the world around me anymore… I’m not sure the way out of that. My first priority has to be to try and get the help I need – the understanding, support and validation. I’m not an expert in breakdowns and how to recover from them. So I have to be patient with myself and as people would say to me, take it a day at a time. I only hope people can show more compassion and understanding than I received the other night, whilst I live in this hell. It’s scary to not feel part of life, to be in so much pain and not want to exist anymore. To not feel in control of your own mind and body sometimes. It’s embarrassing to have people witness your mental breakdown, fearing they will judge you for it and leave you. Trying to rebuild your life whilst wanting to die is so hard. And I’m grateful to those who understand and who have stuck by my side and not held my illness against me.

 

I shall continue writing, as a step on my long journey to hopefully getting well again one day. If my truth offends people then I’m sorry. But I’m only sharing my relatively new experience of paranoia and trauma, and living with this illness is more painful for me than sharing my truth could ever be for you.

 

 

xxxx

 

 

CMHT: Failings In Mental Health Services.

CMHT (2)

 

 

When you’re mentally unwell it is hard to know what to do or where to turn. Making the decision to ask for help is not an easy one. Actually taking that step and reaching out is even harder. I’ve had an experience this year which I know I’m not alone with… in that my plea for help has been ignored, and my referral rejected. I know this happens to a lot of people around the country.

 

I saw my doctor last weekend and she had discussed their rejection with my local mental health team. The woman she spoke to apparently said that I should see it as a positive …  yes, that’s right…. I should see it as a positive that they’re denying me help. I suppose because it means they don’t deem me to be that seriously unwell that I require their help – so it means I’m better than I think I am. If you’re following this blog I think you know full well what is wrong with that…

 

It is completely INVALIDATING! It’s saying that what I’m experiencing isn’t as bad as I feel it is. That others have it worse. That things could be worse and I could be a very real danger to myself or others. I’ll tell you, that’s the only way things could be worse for me – that I actually act on thoughts and visions I have of killing myself, or that I become a danger to others. I’m one step before all that. But it seems that means I’m not ‘ill enough’ to warrant help. It seems I have to take that step over the edge, try to take my life and hope I survive it in order to receive their help.

 

They will only help those who are at that point or who experience psychosis I believe. The trouble with this is that it makes people like me question if we need help. If help is only given once you’ve tried to kill yourself, and they tell you to see not getting help as a good sign, therefore invalidating your suffering, then you’re going to start thinking you don’t need to seek help until you’ve tried to kill yourself. Which might as well be the case with the CMHT anyway, as they won’t see you until you’ve done so.

 

The changes they’ve made to mental health services are ridiculous. CMHT won’t help until you’ve crossed the line between life and death. Until then they direct you to wellbeing centres or the like, which is fair enough if you’re at that stage where that sort of thing will help. They do courses about anxiety, anger management, mindfulness, confidence. But when your issues are intense…. like ‘BPD’ intense… you’re endlessly having breakdowns, unable to function in society, your whole life is messed up by your illness and you don’t want to live anymore… but haven’t quite got to the stage of taking action to remedy that, then you’re on your own….. UNTIL you take action and hit rock bottom. Then and only then might mental health services help you, if you’re lucky. Never mind that once someone has tried to end their life there’s more work to be done to fix them, and they might be more likely to try again. They put off helping people before the event, letting them fall apart completely – they’d rather fix broken people than stop people totally breaking in the first place. It’s ridiculous.

 

I used an IAPT service last year… which I was under the impression used the ‘stepped-care approach’… meaning they could step people up to step 4 if necessary – the mental health team, if the person’s beyond their help. I was step 3. I struggled with the course. Had various issues with it and didn’t get a great deal from it. I came away broken. They didn’t ‘step me up’. I had to go away and work on things by myself or go to my doctor to be referred to CMHT. I think this was negligence on their part. They couldn’t help me and in fact in some ways made me worse, so they should’ve done what they could to get me better.

 

It seems you’re very much on your own nowadays with mental illness. You alone have to make the choice of what to do. Right now I have to choose what direction I go in – my doctor’s re-referring me but I have serious doubts about this, as I should not have to BEG for help – it only makes me feel worse and resentful. They may reject me again. Or they may not. And then they might make me feel worse than I do now, as I don’t hear great things about mental health services anymore. If I do get to see a psychiatrist and get diagnosed, as much of a relief as this would be to me, what if it results in bad things, like being denied treatment, or facing stigma, neglect and abuse and restrictions in the future?  Getting help might make me worse…. but at the moment I feel NOT getting help will make me worse…. so I’m stuck. I’m confused. I don’t know what to do.

 

And I wish I wasn’t the one who had to make the decision. Things used to be so easy. You went to your doctor, you were referred, they saw you and took the lead. Now they’re all reluctant to take anyone on and actually do the work helping you… they look for any excuse to avoid you… they ask you what it is you want from them…. how it is you think they can help you….. what has happened in the space of ten years?? Where has all the care gone? It’s not that I want my choices taken away from me, but I could do without the pressure and added stress of worrying what’s right and wrong for my mental health. I need to know what is on offer. I need to know what is wrong with me and what would be the best treatment for it – even if CMHT don’t want to offer me that treatment… at least I would know where to go with it… and I don’t want to be fobbed off by them telling me to do a course on assertiveness at the wellbeing centre or something…. I want honesty. What type of THERAPY will be best to help me with my emotional turmoil and my mountain of ‘trauma’…. tell me how to heal my mind and to be able to live one day in this life without being wounded by everything around me…. how to not be traumatised by the tiniest experiences…. how to not want to die anymore. Tell me what will help (and not by brushing it aside and just ‘joining clubs’) and direct me to where I can find that help if you won’t give it. That’s what I need.

 

Answers. Help. Guidance.

 

I don’t like this culture we have now around mental illness. I’ve heard, as I’m sure you have too, that people are deemed ‘not skinny enough’ to be offered help with an eating disorder. This only encourages the person to lose more weight. Telling someone who believes they are fat that their BMI is too high to warrant help is sickening. It is feeding into their illness that tells them they’re not thin enough. It makes the problem worse. Oh, but then of course once they’ve got that ill they’ll get help won’t they! Just like with general mental illness. They won’t see you unless you’re actively suicidal. Never mind if suicide is on your mind every day. They don’t care about that. Only if you MEAN it. From what I’ve just been reading though I hear that once you’re diagnosed with BPD they don’t want to help you. They close off treatments for you. They write you off as a lost cause. I hope this isn’t true. Because that would mean one of the worst, most painful, traumatic illnesses, which puts you at a higher risk of suicide makes you ‘too ill’ to treat. If anyone is in need of care and support it’s those with BPD, as it comes from a place of pain and suffering. We can’t have people give up on us as though we’re a hopeless case, when we’re lacking all hope as it is.

 

The part of all this which makes me angry is that I was denied help…. I was told to see it as a positive…. and that if my mood got any lower they could look at it again perhaps. How the heck do they know the state of my mood?? They haven’t even met with me to assess me!! They’ve deemed me not ill enough to warrant their help. And they’ve based that decision on my past notes and treatment, my experience with IAPT and whatever the doctor said to them. Unless they just remember me from years ago and think ‘Oh no not her again!’, they are making the decision on assumptions and old evidence. I’m not where I was ten years ago. I’m not where I was a year ago under IAPT. I’m worse. But they wouldn’t know that because they haven’t met with me. They probably don’t know much about my suicidal thoughts, my paranoia, my self-harm and all the other elements of my illness. How can they tell all that from a bit of paper?

 

I feel as though they’ve communicated to me (through my doctor – who thankfully is a lovely doctor), that what I’m experiencing isn’t that bad. How would they know?? And for their information it is ‘Hell on Earth’, to quote a friend. Right now I have constant urges to hurt myself. I harm myself every other day in some way and it’s never enough. I can’t stop. A part of me doesn’t want to stop. I want to cause damage and so much pain. There’s chaos in my head every day, and some days I feel the only way it will ever stop is to end my life. And given that I am forced to exist in this way, in this hell, that often looks inviting. I don’t want to end my life, for the sake of my family. To get help I would have to say ‘screw my family’ and try to end it.  That’s asking me to change as a person and go against my values, before I’ll be offered help. Why not help me now while I’m still determined to not end my life, even if the only reason I’m hanging on is my family? Surely that should be worth something….?

 

I know I’d be a tough case. Because I can’t willingly say I want to get better. That I want to change my ways of coping. This is because I have no faith in my ability to recover. I cannot see a future without me self-harming. I can’t see a future with good people around me, fulfilling my emotional needs and treating me well. My life has got smaller and smaller. It’s hard to imagine the opposite. I can’t say I want to get better. I want the world around me to get better before I feel I can. I don’t feel I can help myself at the moment. Does this mean I don’t deserve help? Does it all depend on me being willing to help myself? Some of us hit such a bad patch in life that we need help in order to start helping ourselves again. That’s where I am. I want to WANT to help myself. That’s the best I can do right now.

 

But I need help… and that help doesn’t seem to exist for me. I see the doctor again in a couple of weeks. I might find out if I’ve been rejected again or perhaps it’ll take longer than that for them to decide. I don’t hold much hope. I’ve had someone suggest I get myself an advocate. I haven’t yet looked into this, but may do. The trouble is, these rejections and the invalidation makes me think it would all be a waste of time and that I don’t need or deserve help. That they won’t help me no matter what… and if they did they would make me feel like I’m wasting everybody’s time. The last thing I need right now is to be made to feel a burden when I’m reaching out for help. It takes such courage to ask for help. When you have your pleas ignored and rejected too many times, eventually you’ll give up asking and suffer in silence. God knows where that’ll end up. A gamble between life and death I think. It shouldn’t have to come to that…

Believe It Or Not…

*Language & self-harm*

 

 

Believe it or not those with a mental illness can have fun, enjoy things in life, smile and laugh… whilst still having the illness and suffering with it daily. 

 

Something which was said to me recently was when I told people at work that I was going to a gig next year – I managed to get front row seats to see my favourite band on their comeback tour…. and I had someone say to me ‘What gets me is you can do that yet….’, as if to say if I can go to a gig why am I struggling with other things? My answer to that was simple – I won’t eat all day! My anxiety will be that high that I feel sick and can’t eat until I get home after midnight. This is usual for me. I can go to a concert, a show or other big event and though you may not see it, I struggle. I am anxious. But for instance this gig next year is to see a band I supported for half of my life – I love them and I have to be there – therefore, as a one-off occasion I will suffer the emotions that come with it.

 

I went to a gig last year, to see one of the members on a solo tour….. I was anxious and upset the whole time because of something that happened. I kept a face on generally and when I got home, I burst into tears and roared the house down. It was a bad experience for me. Just because you see me out doing these things, apparently ‘confident’ or having fun it doesn’t mean you know what’s going on for me. My mental health was awful at that time – I’d recently had my breakdown at therapy. I still went. I think the only thing I’ve done since is go to a comedy show – that was good. It’s nice to be able to go out and laugh and feel part of something.

 

There almost seems to be this rule that if you’re mentally ill you have to look miserable and a nervous wreck all the time. And you have to stay home, unable to leave the house. I’ll have you know that’s what I’ve done most of this year. My illness does make it hard to leave the house. It makes it hard to leave my room or put clothes on, or anything! So any times I go out should be celebrated. I shouldn’t be made to feel guilty for going out and having much-needed fun. These sorts of events are needed for me at the moment, to give me things to look forward to and to stick around for, because most of the time I don’t want to live anymore. In some ways even seeing this band next year is not enough incentive to stay alive. But at least it’s something. I have a number of things I’ve got booked in for next year. And yes, some of them I am going to alone. Don’t think this is easy for me to do. It’s not. I’m dreading it. I’m trying not to think of it actually. But I will get through it as I have before. The reason I’m going alone is because I have been socially isolated this year… completely. So I had to make a choice… if I want to go to these things I have to go alone. It’s as simple as that. I made the decision and regretted it immediately afterwards. But I don’t have to think about those things right now.

 

On the days I can put on my mask you will see me in a work setting, joining in with the banter, laughing, chatting to customers…. it’s an act… to fit into society. I can’t show my reality for fear society will reject me. That is why I am not able to be in that work setting at the moment, because I’m unable to wear that mask. Who knows where I’ll be next year. I hope to feel better by then. I don’t see it happening.

 

I have a comedy show next week. I’m going with one of my parents, as I have done most things with them this year – they’re pretty much all I have, and are my rocks. I’m hoping laughing will do me some good. But I know it won’t solve the issues I have to deal with. Does this mean I shouldn’t get to go to something in the hope of a little relief from the suffering I endure every day of my life? After the gig I went to last year and other experiences, I’m concerned something will go wrong and ruin the experience. But I just have to go with the flow.

 

All throughout my illness people may have seen me laughing, chatting, messing around. Some of it an act… some of it me actually letting go and forgetting my illness for a while – which is nice! Does that mean I’m not ill and don’t have difficulties? No. Everyone is allowed to have fun and be happy and still have a serious illness. We shouldn’t live in fear that if we act normal or express contentment or enjoyment for a moment, that people will question the validity of our claims of illness…. but this is how I feel a lot of the time.  And this thinking keeps you stuck, not getting better because you never allow yourself to feel good. The worry is that people will see you laughing and think you’re not struggling anymore, leaving you misunderstood. But at the same time that is the mask people wear in order to be accepted… which means we feel ‘accepted’ but never understood … this is a big problem for me… although lately I feel neither understood nor accepted!

 

Believe it or not, people with a mental illness can also have strong opinions… and stand up for themselves…. and still have that illness. Just this morning I expressed my view online, and a troll decided to tell me ‘nobody cares!’ – I bit right back, saying that’s how I felt about their opinion, told them to have a nice day and muted them…. an outsider might think ‘Wow, strong…. she doesn’t care and won’t put up with any shit…. surely she can’t have anxiety or BPD like she claims’….. forget the fact that straight after that I harmed myself in one of the worst ways I ever have. Forget that it’s made me reluctant to say anything else. Forget that I had instant palpitations caused by this sod. Forget that it completely triggered me, because all this year my feeling has been that ‘nobody cares’ about me whatsoever…. friends, mental health services…. bloody government!! I’ve written about this several times this year.

 

But my response will usually imply I’m stronger than I am, because I was bullied all my life and I don’t believe in remaining silent, being made to feel like shit. I also don’t believe in worsening a situation to the point that I want to die instead of just cut. I believe in a curt response, putting the person in their place and then blocking them and moving on. I would have been able to do this had the troll not found my Achilles’ heel – feeling like nobody cares what I think or feel and I should be ignored. These nasty shitholes do a lot of damage to me, but fuck it, I’m allowed opinions. And I’m allowed to defend myself against bullies. This does not mean I’m not ill.

 

So often I have to weigh up my mental health and my RIGHT to say what I feel about things. It’s not right that it should be this way. I should be allowed to express myself without idiots jumping on my posts and attacking me, therefore worsening my mental health. Nobody NEEDS to respond to people they disagree with. I didn’t even say anything controversial. I was just telling my MP I won’t be voting for her again. What fucking business is it of that moron to tell me nobody cares?? You disagree, fine. Write your own post of support for the MP. This is the trouble I have with those with opposing political views to mine – they all think they’re entitled to explanations from us, and they can’t control their impulse to argue with everything and everyone they disagree with. Whereas we tend to let people have their views. I’ve never jumped on someone for their views. I had this with a friend a year or two ago (I say friend, I mean acquaintance) – she would always pounce on my posts, trying to appear ‘right’… but I never did the same to her. I let her have her views on her profile unchallenged, because I believe in freedom of speech but more importantly I believe in decency and manners. If I disagreed with something she said I would make my own post about the matter, separately, rather than trying to put her views down. But she didn’t do the same. So many on her side seem like that. Why can’t people just state their opinions independently without feeling the need to put others down?

 

Believe it or not those with a mental illness can be quite knowledgeable about their illness and still be ill. We can know what our issues are (which seems quite useful as professionals don’t seem to know how to help us anymore and ask us what help we want!!). We might know we’re experiencing paranoia, therefore knowing that the thoughts aren’t based on reality, but that doesn’t mean we can turn it off. I’ve experienced intense paranoia this year… I’m aware that it could be paranoia… I stated it and I wasn’t proved wrong, so actually in my mind it wasn’t paranoia now… but others would view it as untrue therefore paranoia. All I knew was they were obsessive thoughts that I couldn’t get over no matter how hard I tried. Knowing it’s paranoia doesn’t help. And it doesn’t mean I’m not experiencing paranoia.

 

It’s been years since I had it suggested that I had BPD / EUPD. I didn’t want the diagnosis when it was on offer, as my CPN made me feel there’s a lot of stigma around it. But in all those years since then I’ve had a lot of time to accept that it explains my experiences, so even without the official diagnosis I accept it, and have educated myself about my own illness. I know which of my behaviours and thinking patterns are problematic. Does this mean I can necessarily do anything to change them, without help? No. Awareness… insight….it doesn’t mean the illness is a choice. It doesn’t mean you have the answers. And even if you do have the answers it doesn’t mean you know what they are or how to access them even. I might know the level of help I need with an illness like this… I might be able to talk eloquently about what I’m going through… this may make some think I don’t have a problem in reality, as I’m not so bad that I can’t express what’s happening or what I need, but awareness and the ability to discuss my illness does not lessen the grip it has on my life. It doesn’t make it easier to deal with. In fact it’s worse…. to know what’s wrong with you… to know you need help and not be able to get it. To understand when you’re ‘splitting’ or engaging in self-destructive actions, but to be unable to stop and choose a different course, when people would expect you to be ‘smart enough’ to not make those choices. The illness is still real and has control over me… no matter how much I know about it.

 

So I might be opinionated. I might know a lot about my illness. I might go out and have fun sometimes. It doesn’t mean I’m cured. The path to recovery is long… and if every little step along the way is viewed by others as a leap and a sign of no longer being ill, this will lead to unrealistic expectations on me which will send me spiralling backwards. I am trying to survive. I can’t honestly say at this moment I am trying to get better. But I’m trying to endure the hell I live in. Most days it’s not a life worth living. There aren’t many good things in my life, so when I create them for myself this should be seen as an intent to keep striving for recovery, or at least a determination to endure the pain for longer. I should be allowed to have fun or speak my mind without fear of people questioning the reality of my illness.

 

Even things I enjoy, I also struggle with. Things aren’t always as they seem with mental illness. Often you can’t see it… that’s why so much stigma exists. And when doubts are thrown at us about the true extent of our illness, because of the things we CAN do, it is invalidating and makes us feel accused of making it up. I don’t know about you but I can say for certain, I don’t fake being ill …  I fake being well …  just so I can try and fit in and ‘get better’ for real. I realise how self-damaging this is now, as people expect more from me than I can give. That’s why I’ve pulled away from everything. I can no longer pretend to be well. But I promise you this – if you see me out and about either in the work setting or at an event, I will have my mask and smile on and chat as though nothing’s wrong…. it’s habit. It’s not easy to give up when you’ve been conditioned to appear positive around others. Just know there’s more going on underneath than you could ever know.

 

 

 

Bad Mental Health Day… (Rant)

*Strong language, self-harm and suicide references. Read with care*

 

 

There is no such thing as a ‘good mental health day’ for me, not for a long time now. But I can tell the particularly bad ones apart from the rest. Today is one of those. In fact all week has been. There is no imminent reason. Nothing’s changing. Nothing is happening that hasn’t been happening all year…. just sometimes you can’t cope with things as well.

 

If you looked at me you wouldn’t think I was any worse than usual. My usual has become more depressed – so not going out, getting dressed, brushing my hair has become the new normal. So although you’d know things aren’t ‘good’, you wouldn’t know that I spent this morning trying to research where to cut myself to do more damage. Or that I went onto a site to find out the least painful way to kill yourself – of course it was one of those sites that reels you in and tells you not to do it and to reach out to Jesus instead! But looking up these things is something new. I’ve been self-harming for half my life now. I’m not new to it. So I have no reason to research, other than I want to cause more damage. That’s how bad I have become with my mental health.

 

I know I have probably already damaged my hand from punching a wall weeks ago… I still have pain and it seems deformed. But that doesn’t stop me wanting to make it worse. A professional could say to me ‘You might break your hand’… but the state I’m in now, that’s not an incentive to stop hitting the wall… it’s more like ‘…. good’. If you’ve never been in that state of mind you would think I’m a psycho. I don’t have the energy to tell you why you’re wrong anymore. Not today. It’s like when I lost my friend a few weeks ago, I harmed myself so badly I bruised the tendon in my arm again. And I want to do that again. I want pain. I want blood. I want bruising. I want damage. I have nothing left.

 

My mental health has become so bad it cost me friendships I thought I’d never lose. Mental health services won’t help me. I’m too unwell to do my voluntary work. I don’t leave the house. Unless it’s to do something with family. That’s all I have now. Nothing else. And I hate the world outside my family. I hate them with a passion.

 

My existence is just tolerance now. Tolerating uncomfortable emotions, which seem to always be there. I have no professional support. No social support from friends. Yes there are one or two people I talk to online. But no close friends in real life. ‘Make some new friends – take up a new activity’….. fuck off. Do you actually know what it’s like to feel how I do today? Do you know what it’s like to have lost everything and to feel so suicidal and to just want to keep cutting yourself over and over again? And how hard it is to have self-worth buried six feet under the floorboards. To have paranoia and anxiety about going outside the front door, let alone to meet new people and have to trust them to not abandon you, like even your most trusted friends have?? Do you know what it’s like to not want to live anymore, therefore how hard it is to do things that would improve your life? And to have to cope with this all on my fucking own?

 

Mental health services I think, are too fixated by this ‘You have to want to get better…. you have to put in the work, I can’t do it for you’ crap. Yes, of course I have to put in effort – it’s what I did at therapy, at DBT… I’ve always been the one to help myself, with support. But what about times like now? What about when someone can’t help themselves anymore, because they’ve been allowed to spiral to the point of apathy and despair? What about when I can’t even picture feeling better…. when I can’t even see a future…. when I feel so paralysed and isolated and unsafe in this world….. what then? If I’m unable to help myself straight off the bat does that mean I’m undeserving of help? Do you have to be able to help yourself otherwise you’re just seen as a lost cause? Because the trouble is I’ve felt like a lost cause all year. Nobody has proven otherwise. My friends left me. CMHT won’t help me. They think as I’ve done DBT there’s nothing more they can offer me. As if ‘Well if that didn’t help you, nothing will….. just look at your folder and use your skills’. Thanks. I’m beyond being directed to a folder I made over ten years ago. I need actual human help to dig me out of this grave I’m existing in. I’m being buried by pain and nobody wants to help me with that pain. Nobody wants to understand it, validate it, or tell me what the hell is wrong with me and how to treat it. I need help. I need compassion. I need effort. I need to know I’m worth something in this world. Because I’ve lost that and I see no other reason to live than to not hurt my family.

 

Why won’t anybody HELP me? 

 

Nobody gets how difficult it is to keep living right now. I am constantly wanting to hurt myself because at least that’s the sort of pain I can ‘tolerate’. Tolerating paranoia, anxiety, suicidal thoughts, chaotic thoughts, disturbing images, crippling depression, isolation, self-hatred, guilt from wanting to die, fear of abandonment, feeling helpless, hopeless and a failure, and the biggest desire to just not feel anything anymore…. that sort of tolerance is something I can’t do. Not without help. The help I can’t get. So I live in hell, experiencing all those things because I can’t get help, and I can’t kill myself because I love my family. So I suffer. And people leave me because I’m suffering. But they have no clue that I’m going through all this hell. So I self-harm to externalise my suffering. To take the focus off the inner turmoil. And I live with the physical pain too. The emotional pain would kill me otherwise. On the scale it is right now it’s not something I could deal with.

 

I feel pain because of abandonment. I feel pain because of grief – that’s been particularly hard this week for some reason. I don’t tend to self-harm because of the sadness of my loss. I don’t think I ever have. I usually just let myself cry. It’s only this week that the pain of grief felt too strong that I thought about self-harming to stop it. But I didn’t. But I do self-harm as a result of other things that I can’t cope with so well now, as the grief has made me vulnerable. I view life through a different lens now. Life is just a waiting room… waiting for your appointment with death. My outlook on life has become morbid. I know I have to do some work on grief, but grief is not the biggest problem in my life right now. Other people are. And I can’t cope with them. I can’t cope with being around people, or talking to them. It’s too much.

 

I  also feel pain from things that happened over the years. I feel pain at realising my closest friends didn’t really care about me. I feel pain at the loss I experienced at therapy last year. That keeps trying to rear its ugly head. I have to try and block it out at times like this. I have enough trying to kill me without that joining in. It’s just when times are like they are at the moment, I want to run back to those days and the therapists who ran the course. I have nothing now. I feel pain about all the online abuse I’ve had this year too. I feel pain at not receiving help. I feel pain from everything and everyone. There’s that saying –

 

“People with BPD are like people with third degree burns over 90% of their bodies. Lacking emotional skin, they feel agony at the slightest touch or movement.” ….. 

 

Usually I feel the agony at the slightest touch …  as in ‘how people treat me’… but now I feel it from every movement I make …  as in ‘nobody has to even do anything bad to me, just living hurts’. People talking to me and people NOT talking to me both hurt me…. so it’s better just to deliberately stay away from people. But it still hurts, because they don’t come looking for me, fighting for me. So whatever I do… or don’t do… hurts. Living just hurts. 

 

It’s taken all day to write this. I ramble so much and yet never feel I’ve said enough. I can’t ever release the chaos I feel inside, and I worry I don’t express it well enough for anyone to understand the hell I’m in.

 

Today is a very bad mental health day. It’s 5pm and I haven’t had my morning meds… (don’t worry, I’m about to). Those are the days I know are bad. Now some might say they’re bad BECAUSE I’ve not had my meds…. could be… but this has been ongoing for the last few days. Medication won’t actually make me feel any better than I do right now, because even if I do have a need for medication, the problem is life…. lack of support, so much loss and pain, and just being weary of life. No pill will change my circumstances and all the shit that’s happened to me. And there’s been a lot of shit. I don’t know how I’m still here. I need something that will make me forget all the bad things, or remember all the good things….. I need more good things to happen…. I need more people to be the sorts of people I need in my life…. I need them to be kinder, gentler, warmer…. consistent. I need to be understood. I don’t want people being super positive to me or saying we all feel that way sometimes – fuck off. I know you don’t know what to say to me but you’re making me feel worse and more misunderstood and alone. No more of the ‘What you need to do is blah blah blah’…. no….. what YOU need to do is shut the fuck up and listen to what I’m saying and acknowledge how I’m feeling – comfort and support me, without advising me or comparing my suffering to yours or anyone else’s.

 

I’m always being told I need professional support – sustained support from secondary mental health services. Other people with lesser demons than mine seem to have that support. Why can’t I? Being denied that help communicates to me that they wouldn’t give a fuck if I did end it. They’re supposed to be there to help people. What a shit job to take, whereby you just sit back and let someone end their life… turning your back on them as a lost cause…. how the fuck do they sleep at night?

 

Guess I’ll have to pay over £300 to see a psychiatrist for an assessment then, to get a diagnosis in order to get the help I need, and then I’ll have to go private to be treated for it – whilst other people with the same illness get given the help for free…… I have to pay other people to keep me alive…… what fucking incentive is that? We should be given the money to stay alive. All these people who’ll have to do that – they’ll recover from the depths of their illness and have no fucking money left, which will cause life problems and worsening of their illness. It’s ridiculous. WHY SHOULD I HAVE TO PAY TO STAY ALIVE?!! I’m already giving enough effort and paying the price just staying alive for the sake of others…. why do I also have to pay someone else money just so I don’t die?! This country is fucked up. And I’m always the one left crawling on the floor, BEGGING for help. It’s not fucking right. It makes me more suicidal.

 

I’ve had enough. There’s no point to this post. I’m just sick of the chaos. Today was a very bad day. At least I see the doctor this weekend. That’s something. I guess.

 

 

 

Rants On Reality.

*This is venting so very strong language and self-harm / suicide references*

 

Time to be honest, I’m not okay. Yes I’m taking little steps. Yes I have some wonderful things to look forward to next year. And to many people I’d probably seem like I’m doing better than I was two or three weeks ago. But inside is chaos and sometimes I just want it to stop.

 

I need help… the help I’ve been denied by mental health services. I need someone to tell me what the fuck is wrong with me. I thought I knew, but now it feels there’s so many layers to it that I don’t know how to do life now. I feel like my mind is going… my concentration and memory are rubbish. My stress level is constantly high, so the slightest thing is too overwhelming for me. Whenever I go out I feel exhausted and ill afterwards. It’s like my brain is so full of noise and traffic, that being around other people and having to pretend to be well, is too much and will make me snap. I’m worried about going back to my voluntary work. I tried taking steps towards that this week, but already I’m panicking about it. I know that having to work with the public is not something I can do right now. It’s too overwhelming.

 

Also being around people is too dangerous… people only have to say something wrong, even in a banter kind of way, and it’s like I’ve just been emotionally stabbed. People would have to walk on eggshells around me, or I’d have to constantly be hurt by those around me.

 

I’m not okay with friends. I’m trying to block out how I feel about it all, so I don’t feel the full effect of it again. I’ve been trying to stay in touch casually with people, but still feel so detached. The nagging feeling like none of them really care is always there, contributing to the chaos in my head. Pressure to talk to people too…. I have times I can talk to them, and others like right now where I don’t even keep up to speed on what’s going on for them. I can’t open up. There are people I’m supposed to have got back to… I haven’t. I feel really guilty about it but at the same time I still can’t do it. I’m having a problem with words right now. I feel emotionally imprisoned.  I feel if I start talking to people a whole world of emotions and thoughts will tumble out. So I’d rather live in denial of other people. I feel bad for it.

 

I keep trying to write my feelings out about losing my best friend. I can’t do it. I don’t even know how I feel anymore. I’m pissed with her. I’ve been hurt by her. I hate her. I miss her. I feel calmer and more resigned to a life without her. I feel misunderstood. I feel guilty. I feel bitter that I feel guilty. I feel scared…. scared to ever try and sort things out with her. So I don’t. I won’t. Part of me feels it’s her fault so she should  approach me and apologise for abandoning me because of my mental illness. Part of me realises she probably thinks I’m the one in the wrong and abandoned HER… because she doesn’t understand mental illness or how her last message came across to me. She made me feel like a burden and like she needed space. So I’ve given her that. I’ve had a life of feeling like a burden and a worthless piece of shit, which she knows about, so she shouldn’t expect me to go crawling to her begging for her friendship. Won’t happen. She did me wrong. Who abandons someone at their lowest ebb?? But then a part of me thinks she didn’t deserve to have me ruining her happy life with my misery, so she was within her rights to walk away.  But that feeds the low self-worth monster. I can’t work out if I want to be nice to her or tell her how much she’s hurt me. So I say nothing and can’t complete any bit of writing I do about it.

 

I always stop and pull my hair out instead. That became a problem again. Just like the self-harm… particularly punching. I really want to self-harm so much but often can’t muster up the energy to do anything like that. I feel numb yet like I’m drowning in emotions at the same time…. like there’s so many feelings going on inside me, that they’ve filled my airways and they’re pinning me down and stopping me from acting or speaking. So nobody knows how I’m really feeling. It’s like someone having their voice stripped away, having their heart dug out of their chest and screaming in agony but nobody can hear them…. or even more than that, being paralysed and being tortured but showing no signs of the hell you’re going through on the inside.

 

Paranoia. Nobody can know what it’s like to be mistrusting of people’s intentions, even your own family members. My best friend didn’t understand that a lot of the changes she saw in me this year were as a result of paranoia, and probably took it personally. But do you know what it’s like to be scared of your own loved ones, for no reason? To feel they’re going to hurt you in some way….. with no evidence that it’s true…. just your own mind convincing you of it. It’s scary. I spent a long time when I was younger, not wanting to be around the males in my family as I had convinced myself that I’d repressed something and that they weren’t safe to be around. I know this is not true, and when I’m in a healthier state of mind I never even think it, but it comes from a place of not trusting anyone – I’ve always been particularly mistrusting of men because of some of the jerks who have hurt me over the years. But it also comes from feeling disconnected from reality. I don’t know what’s real sometimes. I have dreams where I get really angry with people I love. I wake myself up shouting and swearing things like ‘I’ll fucking kill you for that!!’ …. sometimes kicking my legs in the air or punching the pillow next to me. In the last few days I keep having dreams where I’m desperately trying to punch a wall and injure myself, but it’s like I’m doing it under water, so can’t hurt myself as much as I want. It’s frustrating.

 

Times like right now I want to scream my way into a new reality where none of the last six years happened. Life doesn’t feel real. Not the life outside of my house. Even going on the bus the other day, people didn’t seem real…. or they seemed TOO real…. like they’re on another plane of existence from me. Like I am floating around in a bubble of invisibility while they live life…. that’s how I’ve felt all this year. It’s unsettling.

 

My mind keeps jumping to different thoughts. I’m thinking about the fact I cannot remember growing up. I remember tiny snapshots of experiences. I remember when I had a nosebleed at primary school and the dinner-lady pinched my nose so hard it hurt. I remember when someone stole my favourite teddy ‘Freddy Teddy’ from school when we had to take a bear in… not sure I ever got over that! I remember a few of us (we were the good kids) running back to our classes at the end of the day after a music group, as we didn’t want to be late, and a teacher came out and shouted at us really loud for running through the playground past all the parents, and how humiliating it was. I remember standing alone at lunchtimes by the wall, watching everyone else have fun. I remember begging to tag along with other people so I wasn’t alone. I remember being bullied. I remember being teased so much about my hairy arms that I started shaving them. I remember the amplifier not being switched on for a jazz band performance and the teacher embarrassing me while I was on stage. I remember being stalked by someone I befriended when he was new to the school, and how nobody wanted to be around me if he was there. I remember a boy in my tutor group putting his thumb through my clay work I did in art – he was later expelled for other reasons. I remember a girl telling me a group turned down having me in their limo for the prom because I’m ‘boring’. I remember a teacher giving me a dressing down for reporting her to my parents instead of talking to her myself. I remember a teacher grabbing me by the wrist and shouting at me, calling me a ‘stupid girl’ for accidentally picking up a hot tray and burning myself. I remember when my cat died. I remember having a car accident on our way on holiday – don’t recall the details now. I remember when I started self-harming. I remember being ‘abducted’ by a bus driver playing a joke on me one evening when I was alone. I remember the look on someone’s face when I made a mistake at a voluntary job, and me going to my bag and self-harming in the room I was working in. I remember cutting myself under the table in psychology, for doing badly on a test. I remember sneaking scissors into the pocket of my jeans at college and going off in the break in biology to harm myself, for not knowing the answer to a question, despite knowing the answers to everyone else’s questions. I remember flipping out on the biology trip because the people I was working with wouldn’t let me do the job I was meant to do, so I said ‘YOU DO IT ALL THEN!’ and I remember how they looked at me, and I remember wanting to walk out into the sea and drown. I remember …..

 

I’ll be honest. At this point I have a mental block. Everything I just wrote came pouring out in an endless stream of memories…. flashbacks. And at this point I re-joined reality and a part of my brain has yelled ‘STOP!’ as it’s too much… too many bad memories…. the point is the parts I can remember about my childhood and my teenage years are generally bad little snippets – the bits I’d rather forget. And all the good stuff that I wish I could remember I just don’t. I look at photos of me and I don’t remember that person… I don’t remember those times, how I felt or even doing the things we did. It’s like it was a different person.

 

There HAS to be something wrong with my mind…. be it trauma/stress related, amnesia, BPD-related or degeneration of my brain. A part of me is worried I’ve inherited Parkinson’s. I know that’s rubbish, but what if it’s true? What if my brain is dying? Will I ever get my good memories back? I don’t even remember my childhood – growing up with my parents or spending time with my grandparents when I was younger…. which is very upsetting when I’m grieving for my granddad. I have very few real memories to hold on to. Only the knowledge that I loved him, and he cared about and worried about me. The main memories I have of him were after he got ill and as he passed away. Nobody can understand how hard it is – they say to hold on to the good memories, but I cannot remember them now. For whatever reason. I’ve been robbed of my past.

 

On top of that I keep getting really vivid images in my head… like when I’m walking down the stairs – I was carrying a little kitchen knife down the stairs earlier and I had an image of me falling down the stairs and falling onto the knife…. and it plays out in my mind’s eye… graphically… to the extent I can imagine it stabbing me, as well as the pain of just falling down the stairs. Sometimes in the car (as a passenger) I imagine a car coming down the road on the wrong side and us having a head-on crash…. or on the motorway I have visions of a pile-up just ahead of us, and it makes me really anxious. I sometimes imagine situations where people upset me or humiliate me and what my response would be – and it’s like my body reacts as though it’s happening and I feel the emotions it would stir up…… these images happen so quickly and without actual intent to think about them. They’re usually very brief but very detailed and sickeningly graphic. I don’t feel in control of my own mind anymore. What’s wrong with me?

 

I feel so trapped and lost because nobody will help me. Did CMHT reject my referral because they think I have BPD, therefore they’re discriminating against me?? That’s not fair on me to not even be able to see someone to be told what’s wrong with me and what I can do about it. They should at least signpost you to people who can help you… and no, not the IAPT service…. they don’t want to know either.

 

There seems to be this atmosphere of ‘You have to help yourself’ around mental health services nowadays. Whilst I acknowledge that is true, some people need help to be able to help themselves. I will be blogging about this separately, but being told by mental health professionals, ‘You’ve done DBT in the past, just look at your folder and use your skills’ is fucking stupid and neglectful! Don’t you think if it was that easy I wouldn’t be in this mess in the first place?! I need human interaction, support and someone who can offer me hope…. I need someone to figure out everything that’s wrong for me, and once that’s established to perhaps review my medication situation…. not to just tell my doctor that ‘medication won’t help in the long-term’….. okay Sherlock….. so what will?? Because you sure don’t seem to want to help either? So what’s your magical solution for me?? The thing that sickens me is that they would’ve all sat around discussing me and they either thought ‘Oh no, not her again….’ or they simply based the decision on my past…. how the fuck is that meant to help??? I’m not the same as I was in the past. I cut my arms so badly that I bruise my tendons for over a month…… I punch walls so much I have deformed my knuckles……. I pull my hair out so much I leave bald spots….. I feel suicidal most days…… I have no support network anymore…… I have faced so much loss since before…… everything is different but these morons want to base it on the fact that they once offered me the most intensive help they could … there’s nothing more they can do for me… wash their hands of me. Fuck them. And fuck the whole fucking world at this point.  So let’s say I received no support for twenty years, then had a serious relapse…. would CMHT turn me down saying I did DBT once twenty years ago…. ‘that should be more than enough – help yourself’. Warning guys, it seems once you do DBT you’ve signed a contract saying you’ll never seek mental health support again. That’s what it feels like. It’s like they got me to do it, and secretly it meant they could then wash their hands of me. Then once I was discharged there’d be no way back in….. oh, unless I had a serious problem within six months, therefore they’d fast-track me back in………. sorry that I managed to go several years without crawling back to you fuckers. Believe it or not I actually liked not having to report to someone every week or two. I liked the freedom from mental health services. I’m not choosing it as a hobby. I chose it as a fucking lifeline. It took me months to finally decide to be referred. I’ve been through hell this year. And then this.

 

To not even assess me….. you know what, if they were to change their minds now I’m not sure I could attend, as I feel like an utter fucking burden to the services now…. just what someone like me doesn’t need. I feel like a burden to IAPT, a burden to CMHT, a burden to my best friend. ARE YOU ALL TRYING TO FUCKING KILL ME???! All these people who should be there to support you in your hour of need and I’m treated like I’m nothing. Like if I did kill myself what would it even matter? Mental health services should be there to make people feel better, but my experience has been the opposite. At my most fragile times I’ve been made to feel like shit for not being well again. DO YOU THINK I WANT TO BE ILL AGAIN??? This is the most detached from reality I’ve felt in my life. I’m scared. Scared of the world, scared of people and scared of myself. And each rejection and abandonment deepens the wound and makes it that much harder to repair me. Why couldn’t anyone help before I reached utter despair?

 

I’m upset now, so better stop writing. Sorry if there’s typos etc. – was just ranting, can’t be bothered to check right now.