Tag Archives: frustrated

can’t get a grip on these emotions

I know, you’re probably sick of reading from me… Skip if you want (nothing of worth anyway, just me documenting mostly for myself).

I can’t get a handle on my emotions this week. I’m flying from being ok when I saw TM yesterday, to crashing last night and not being able to pull out of it today. Everything seems hopeless and useless and pointless…

I want to call TM and say next week will be it. I’m not seeing a point to it right now, since I hope to be moving in just over a month. What can we possibly accomplish in that time? Why did I bother to trust her or work with her in the first place. I knew it would end fast. I guess I was hoping it would be easier if I tried to just push through things. It’s not. And now it just sucks. I’m not totally sure what triggered this crash, but I’m back to another transference reaction, similar to the one around De’s leaving (only this time I’m doing the leaving). I don’t think it helps that I feel like TM “gets” me. She responds to my not-always-spoken fears, and we seem to click. I want to take her with me when I go, but I know it’s not possible…

I’m back to really just wanting to hide forever. F-this. I’m cooked right now. And I’m being stubborn and I’m not going to call her tomorrow. She’s right, I need to get back to a place of not needing her. So…

At the same time, I want to go hide in her office and get through all this emotional b.s. I want her to tell me it’s ok to be a mess, and that it’s gonna suck, but eventually it will get better. And I want her to tell me I was stupid for thinking I’d be able to get through any significant progress around all this in 4 months… I want her to agree that I should have known better. And I want her to hate me, and do something so I can be mad at her so it’s easier to just walk away.

I want to run away so badly right now. I want to erase everything and just disappear…

I’m so done with this constant roller-coaster. I wish there was some magic that worked. I wish meds didn’t make things worse… I wish I could just blink into nothingness.


Waking up on edge

I woke this morning wanting to scream and cry and break things… I have no idea why. I don’t remember any nightmares or scary dreams. I can’t think of any good reason I should be this cranky and upset, yet I want to destroy myself. :/

I hate when days start out like this. What prompted it? Why are the tiniest things setting off a huge emotional reaction in my head?

I’m back to thinking if I could just smash my body, I wouldn’t have to feel this anymore… only, I’m not consciously feeling anything. That’s normally a though that goes along with overt and intense flashbacks. I can’t recognize any today.

This is very frustrating. Apologies in advance if I can’t keep this in check when interacting with anyone online and in real life… I don’t mean to be an ass. Sorry…
______________________________

Took a nap, and realized I’m having flashbacks in my sleep. I remembered it and felt it the first few seconds after waking up, now it’s just the aftereffects of them without too clear an idea of what was going on in it… :/ at least I know why I was reacting as if I’d been dealing with them.

Are they worse in dreams for anyone else?


That sucked

Therapy today sucked. I barely held it together these past two weeks, and… well. It sucked. I didn’t know how to really communicate. As soon as I started to let a bit of my guard down, all the walls started to crumble… I thought I communicated how bad things were, but I guess not. She asked what changed between the time I was able to walk in to talk to her and the time I sat down. I didn’t know how to tell her it felt safe enough to crumble, and that’s why it started to happen…
We are still just doing every other week. I tried to tell her I wasn’t ok with that, and that I doubted I would call to schedule an appointment next week, but again, I guess I wasn’t effective…
I did ask her right at the beginning if she was mad at me from the previous week (because I had called asking to take her up on the appointment). She reminded me that she had told me to call if I needed to, and she apologized for not realizing they were closed Friday as part of the holiday. She tried to get me to reason out why I would think she was mad, and that if she had been, would it have been more her issue or something I had done (I think she had mentioned not being mad, but actually glad I was able to ask for something I needed). She again reminded me that she had asked me to call if I needed it… I know most of that was from emotional flashbacks, but I wasn’t in a space to be able to reason out of it. We agreed that most of what I was feeling was past stuff.
I got stuck on communicating several times. She changed gears and we did some “permission slips” for a while (similar to the coupons I made several weeks ago).  I know I got stuck on that part. She wanted me to write stuff, but I ended up only being able to draw. Then I got stuck on the drawing, and she managed to get me to write some words. In the end, I crumpled up the paper. I had meant to take it with me but forgot it on the little table. I’m wondering if she grabbed it and read the words. I crumpled it because I didn’t want to show her at the time, though it would have probably been good for her to see it…
At the very end of session, I was able to half ask her to clarify why we were tapering. I don’t totally remember what she said, but I got the impression that it was something about phasing me out of therapy there… I could have misunderstood her though, because my head was a swamped mess.
I wasn’t exactly in a head space to leave, but she needed to go. I ended up sitting in the car listening to music and crying for a while (more accurately, trying not to cry. I had to help a friend pack at the time and I didn’t want to show up to his house with puffy raccoon eyes).

image

I also had the art journal class tonight. Glad I went despite feeling shitty. It was a good class. It helped me distract once I could drag my head in behind me… the rest of the class did the stylized heart (and actually I started out doing that, but changed my mind and did a more anatomical one before I glued it in). I really like how their’s came out, but this felt more right tonight. :shrugs: it worked out for what I needed. I did keep some of the depression out of the piece though. I was going to put “dreams lie” or “dreams fail”, but left out the second word. I figured they didn’t need to know all that about me tonight. I wouldn’t want to explain it while I was still feeling raw (we all wander looking at everyone else’s work before we take off. Nothing formal, but just curiosity… didn’t want to have to explain that). It might get added now that I’m home. Also, I want to add some Ellie Goulding lyrics as soon as I look them up…


Another first

For the first time I can remember, I’m resentful of therapy. I don’t want to go today. I don’t want to open up. I don’t want to trust her. I don’t want to do this… but then again, I don’t want to do anything right now, and I’m in a helluva bad mood this morning (no benadryl for the first time in a while, which meant no sleep, lots of anxiety, and a whole heap of resentment). Ugh.  Someone shoot me?


Grumble grumble grumble

TL called out sick today and rescheduled for Saturday.  It was so difficult getting to today. Now I have to get to Saturday.  Ugh. Going to try working on some art. Need some sort of release…

In the mean time, I’m tired but can’t sleep, so going the benadryl route again.  No ativan left because was using that to tame the body memories (didn’t have all that much left, barely 8 doses).  Now just going to utilize the benadryl. Hope it works…


just lost

I don’t know what to do anymore. I’m so lost. I don’t know how to ask for what I need, or even what I need… I thought I asked for more help, but apparently that came out as “it’s ok to go more than a week between sessions…”

Of course, there are no real options for additional help here. I’m limited. I know what I don’t need, but I don’t necessarily know what I do need. There’s this vague idea in my head that more intensive therapy would help, but there’s no way to access it, or any place nearby that I could afford… It’s so frustrating.

I feel totally alone right now (I know I’m not, but I don’t know how to reach out, or what to ask for, or even why I should be asking anything at all). I don’t want to do any of this anymore. I’m so tired. Nothing ever gets better for long. The things that are the most popular suggestions don’t work for me, everything else is nearly impossible to access.

I’ve had flashbacks that don’t go away for the past week… I don’t know anymore how to make them go away. I do the grounding, I do the coping skills off that stupid list, I try to breathe, I try to remind myself it’s just a memory… but nothing works.

I reach out, but apparently I’m reaching out to all the wrong people. none of this is worth it anymore. I’m so tired of struggling and getting nowhere. I’m tired of crashing. I’m just so tired of all of this. But there’s nothing to do. Nothing makes any meaningful changes… I’m just… done. I want it all done.


fog

yesterday’s appointment with TL was much better than the first.  There was a ton of anxiety leading up to it, but I sat it through and met with her (albeit about 30 minutes late because there was a miscommunication amongst office staff).  I was able to give her the stuff I had meant to read her that first time around, and then we talked about some more history (specifically, the brief, cliff-notes version of the stories behind the flashbacks).  She was able to make me feel a bit more comfortable in sitting with her.  I can see her being a bit intense at times, but hopefully we will fall into a balance there.  She was quick to tell me that we didn’t have to talk about what it was that was bothering me, but I found my voice enough to ask for a few more minutes to build up to talking. She seemed to take it in stride.

The hour went by too quickly again, but I let her keep the list.  I hope it helps some. We also switched up the schedule some.  I was going to ask if she had anything earlier in the day (because waiting all day builds too much anxiety), and she was hoping for something earlier also, and on a different day.  We settled on middle-of-the-day Thursday, though that will mean a week and a half between session at a time I should be asking for shorter times between session… Oh well.

I left there emotionally raw and super tired.  I came home with enough energy to fix the bed (had started washing the sheets earlier in the day) and collapse into it.  I took something to help me calm down and sleep, and I am still feeling the effects at 1:30 the next afternoon… I guess this is ok for now.  I guess being drugged-up and only partially feeling the flashbacks is better than the alternative of full-on flashbacks all day… I really need things to change though.  I really need something helpful to get me through all this because it’s exhausting in so many ways…


Stupid things…

…that are not all that stupid, but they are.

I ordered some charms for a bracelet I wanted to make. It was something that was inspired by a song that means a lot to me. I searched high and low to find the charms with the right look. They had to have just the right look. I finally found them. I ordered them, and waited 3 weeks for them to arrive. Now that I see them in person, they don’t fit. They are too large and bulky for the piece of jewelry I want to create. It’s not supposed to be a big deal, but the meaning behind it is huge for me, so the fact that the pieces I am trying to combine for the finished product don’t fit well together are bothering me more than they should. I want to cry over it. I want to sob and tantrum like a little kid… All over some stupid charms that don’t fucking fit. Part of me (that stupid little [big] negative part is saying that this is the way my plans for my life will go: the pieces I think will pull everything together will not fit, and everything will need to be figured out all over again. It’s how life always goes)… so it’s stupid, but it’s not. I’m mad that I “wasted” money on these really awesome charms that just don’t work. And I’m mad that I have to figure shit out all over again… and I’m scared that is how this move will go, and how all my plans for life will always go, because that’s how they always have gone. FML.


why is it not ok?

Why is it frowned-upon to cut a family member out of your life if they cause nothing but grief?  Why is it not accepted that I no longer want to speak to my father or hear about him, or have him anywhere near me?  We have a long history of disappointments and abuse.  I don’t need to have that in my life anymore.  I have made the decision to not speak to him or see him.  Why is that considered selfish?  I had a long conversation with my mom today about him. Several times, she tried to convince me that I should “forgive” (not her word, but the gist of what she meant) him and not be so staunch in my refusal to see him or have him visit.  I tried to make my point that we are now all adults.  For me, this is a self-preservation thing.  I no longer want him in my life because he has proven time and time again that he is only ever thinking of himself.  She tried to convince me to “just ignore him”, but why should I set myself up for stress and frustration? Why should I allow myself to be put into another abusive situation.  Mom and I agreed to disagree.  She is also an adult and can do as she wishes with her personal relationships.  If she wants to keep bringing him into her life, so be it, but I will not allow him to continue to damage mine.  He has been nothing but hateful towards my family and friends.  I don’t need that in my life.  To me, chosen family is often times much stronger and more valuable than “blood” family (at least when it comes to my dad and his bitch of a sister).  There is no expectation to stick around through abuse and disrespect, but for whatever reason, there is with “blood” relatives.  I don’t accept that.  If you are hurtful to me and the people/things I care about, you are out of my life. I will not be bullied back into that relationship because now I do know better and I do have a choice.


a need to be occupied

I find when things start to get hairy, I feel the need to be occupied by something or other 24/7.  Earlier today we had gone out with friends to a local museum/gardens. Then L was asked to come in to work 2 hours early (making it an over-night shift), so she had to go to bed by about 5pm.  I find myself bored and in need of something to occupy my thoughts.  The house is SO quiet right now (except for the dogs occasionally barking).   M’s not big on conversation, so the human contact is at a minimum.  I really want to watch tv or something, but she dislikes the noise.  I’m not really sure what to do with myself.  I know if I head to the art room, the dogs will get antsy and make more noise than they already are.  Yet I feel like I need to engage in something.  Everything at my disposal easily leads to boredom.  I could take the kids for a walk, but all 5 dogs by myself is kinda killer (when “the puppy” walks with us, competition to get ahead ensues.  everyone else has since figured out that I lead the pack and they need to walk with me, but he fights me for that status when the others are around.  the walk then turns to me being dragged behind 5 dogs running in slightly different directions.  I don’t think my arms and shoulders can stand that at the moment).

I put music on in the background, but I’m plugged into the computer… Figures this would be the moment the puppy decides he needs to pee… Well, at least I was able to get all the dogs out to potty before the frogs came out for the night (saves my arm, much like not walking them all at once does).  That took care of about 10 minutes.  Now what?

I’ve noticed that there are times I need to be entertained; to keep my head occupied so the less-desirable obsessions don’t float to the surface.  I’ve really been struggling with self-harm thoughts and urges these last few weeks.  I’ve been doing ok keeping them at bay, but they are stubborn.  I’m trying to be more stubborn.  It’s difficult though.  Really difficult.  I keep finding nothing soothes them for very long, and that I need to keep occupied at all times so they don’t overwhelm me.  The Wreck This Journal had helped for about a week but I find I’m losing steam in it.  The paper cranes helped yesterday, but I can’t bring myself to do more today.  Being out at Morikami helped today, but it’s over now.  I want to watch more Grey’s Anatomy.  Maybe that would help keep me distracted for a while.  But I have to wait till M goes to bed.  It would stress her out way too much (and she hates most tv programs).

I’m not quite sure what else to do with myself.  I may draw or try collaging later if Grey’s doesn’t catch my attention for long.  I need to stay with the dogs to head off most of their barking (so L can sleep some before work). Maybe the music will make the web surfing bearable…


frustrations with the system…

It was suggested that I call the state to see if they could help a bit more with my insurance through them.  As it stands, I need to run up monthly medical bills of more than $1068 before my insurance kicks in.  This makes it nearly impossible to go to the doctor for anything unless I head to the emergency room.  Aside of being a huge inconvenience, it ends up costing the state more.  If they simply covered my doctor’s appointments at a PCP, they would not be paying over a grand when I need medical attention.  As it is, I will be heading to the ER after therapy today so I can get this vertigo figured out.  It’s interfering with my ability to drive or concentrate, which is a huge inconvenience. I can’t be upright for more than 15-20 minutes without starting to feel buzzed and dizzy.  It also happens when there’s too much activity around (heavy traffic, a lot of people moving around)  It brings about dissociation by virtue of being so disorienting.  Everything starts to spin and wobble.  I’m relying on others to drive me because I had 2 scary close-calls over the last 2 weeks.  One day I ran a red light and nearly plowed into a bunch of crossing traffic (no idea where my head was, but the light looked green to me).  The other time I backed into bushes without realizing it, as if I had been driving while drunk.  I can’t risk losing my license or worse: hurting someone… I wish I could just go to a doctor’s office, but they would charge too much for me to afford, but not enough to meet my “share of cost”…

I looked into the healthcare marketplace, but everything is prohibitively expensive per month, with outrageous co-pays and deductibles higher than I make in a year.  How is any of this helpful to someone?  I heard there was potentially “free” insurance, but it’s all via tax credit which translates to having to pay up-front, then being given a credit on my taxes.  That would be fine and dandy if I 1) had the money up front to pay all that, and 2) didn’t already have a tax exemption due to being on disability… It was a great theory, but only for the insurance companies who are now guaranteed customers because we get fined if we don’t buy it.   Thanks for looking out for the big guy.


ugh! forgot to put an f-ing title

I don’t know… I’m cranky.  I got cranky all of a sudden, and for no reason.

Yesterday, I wanted to cry, but had no idea why.  Today I am cranky on top of wanting to cry over the stupidest things. Again, no insight as to why.  I could guess at a whole host of reasons, but I won’t.   I just feel like drinking.  Only problem is, if I drink, I have to drink one fo the big beers we bought to review for the blog.  That means that I then have to write out a thoughtful synopsis of my opinion.  I have no desire to do that right now (damn my “d” key keeps not registering that I strike it as I write. GRRR!).

I don’t know.  I have all this stuff built up inside, and I managed to ignore it for a few short weeks.  Now I see De again tomorrow and it’s all tumbling back at me.  I have financial obligations I just cannot meet (my account is already in the negatives 4 days after I got paid… and the next pay check is not until Feb…  I am trying to sell off some unused reptile tanks in hopes of gaining some money for our trip at the end of this month, but everyone seems to change their mind at the last-minute.  So now I went through all that work of emptying the tanks only to have them consume valuable garage space (at least in the reptile room, they had their space and it wasn’t so awkward).  The body memories are coming back for no discernible reason.  They make me want to demolish myself to get rid of them.  It’s all just way too uncomfortable.  L made dinner tonight, but there was no meat-less sauce left, and I just wanted to cry.  Then I got all excited about a dessert my mom made only to find out she made it differently than she normally does.  I wanted to cry even more.  WTF?!  I’m not supposed to be so moody right now.

This just all sucks.  I have no access to that happier state right now where I can rationalize everything and make myself feel better… maybe I should try some art.


The Hunger Games trilogy is great, albeit a bit triggering…

L and I went to the movies today.  It ended up being a bit of a bumble.  First, we went to the wrong theater, then got to the right one too late – our original movie was sold out.  We also wanted to see the Hunger Games sequel, Catching Fire, so she got tickets for that.  It started an hour later, and lasted an hour longer, but it was REALLY good!  I was a bit on edge most of the movie, but it was an “ok” on-edge feeling.  The first several scenes involve her going through various PTSD symptoms, and I picked up on the others throughout the movie too.  Either this movie did better presenting the symptoms, or I read a whole bunch more into it than I did the first one.  I could feel her fear, anger, hyper-vigilance… I know it all too well.  But anyway, it was good.  And it leaves you hanging.  Fuckers.

Most of the way through the movie, I remembered that mom had expected us home around 4pm… oops!  It was now 5:30 and the movie still had 30 minutes.  I knew she wouldn’t check her texts, but I shot her one anyway.  I called her as soon as we got outside, and apologized for not showing on time.  Normally, this isn’t a big deal, but being Christmas and all, she was a bit miffed.  We got home in time to watch her down more wine and finish the last bites of her chicken.  We will have to atone for this with a gift of more alcohol sometime in the near future.  We really didn’t mean to get to off-track, but we rarely do.  After apologizing and chatting for a while, the tension eased and we enjoyed our dinner.  L even tried to translate some words into Hungarian through the internet, and we found the weirdest translation for cheesecake yet: “pictures of naked women’s legs to look at”… we laughed at that for a good 20 minutes.  I think either slang has gotten really wacky, or someone is trying to screw up poor, unsuspecting English speakers when they try to translate stuff to a language they don’t know…

Anyway, I’m again renewed in my desire to read The Hunger Games books, but I have to find them in hard-copy ( there’s just something “not right” about reading books on a tablet… I guess I’m old-fashioned that way.  I really like the feel and smell of a book, and they never run out of charge just as you get to the good part).  I wish we had paid better attention to the books my landlord had  left us before we donated them.  I know we had the whole trilogy, but I managed to keep only the second book… then that was donated when we moved out of the place.  oops! I should have known better, I liked most of the books C had left behind…


Rawr!

I don’t know happened, but I’m incredibly cranky tonight.  I feel really bad about it, because everyone is catching my wrath. I just want to throw things and break things and scream for no apparent reason. I hate this anger that comes out of nowhere.


coercion as standard “best practice” (vent/rant)

I thought about this all weekend.  I finally worked up the courage/resolve to call the IOP  that had refused to let me back.  In speaking with the case manager (who had never actually met with me in the 2 days I had been there), I was told that any consideration of readmission would depend on my agreement to take psychotropic medications.  She heard/listened to nothing beyond me refusing meds. I tried to explain that I have had really bad experiences on meds, and they tend to de-stabilize me more than I can do on my own.  I tried to tell her that I am better able to control my impulses and urges to harm myself when I am not taking anything. She brought up the meds I was discharged on from my inpatient stay.  I reminded her that I had only been given something for sleep.  I told her the only medication I was willing to take would be something as needed (for sleep or anxiety).  She tried to tell me that antidepressants were not PRN meds, to which I responded that I was not willing to take antidepressants.  She clarified that I was looking only for a program to provide support and not med management, then reiterated that I would not be accepted back to their program if I did not agree to take medications.  She asked if I had kept the med appointment the hospital discharged me with.  I told her again that I was not willing to take medication on a regular basis, so I did not want to waste my time (and a doctor’s) on a useless appointment.  The case manager told me she will call the original program she had mentioned to the hospital social worker to confirm whether or not they accepted my insurance.  She said that she would get back to me by the end of the day.

After I hung up with her, I thought of who I may be able to contact about my change in presentation once off meds.  Clearly, because I have an mh diagnosis and am refusing medications, I must not know what I am talking about and simply be resistant to treatment.  I need a professional with credentials to tell them that I tried way too many meds, and they all just mess with me.  I think I may contact the IOP I attended several times and ask for my records.  I may also contact my old therapist and see if she would be willing to speak with whichever service provider I end up trying to utilize…

When the case manager called back with some referral numbers for me, we again spoke a bit about medication options and the things I had tried.  She spewed one of my most hated lines: “There has to be some combination or med that you have not tried that would work, you just have to find it.”  Why is it so difficult to understand that I am no longer willing to put my life on the line to go through more chemicals that make me worse instead of better?  Why is it so difficult to believe that meds do not work for everyone, and sometimes people just need support and talking?  The other numbers she gave me also all have a med requirement… ugh!  Maybe if I just tell them I am willing to sit down with a psychiatrist to talk about options, I will be able to get in somewhere?  The issue then becomes whether or not they discharge me for refusing to take anything.  L had suggested I accept a prescription for something along the lines of citalopram (Celexa) and just never fill the script or take the med.  I don’t want to lie to my providers.  That just seems counter-productive.  I may end up having to do that though.  I really still want the added support of a day program at least through the holidays.

The practice of forcing people into a corner to get them to take medication is very frustrating, and I will argue also very unethical. Why is it so common practice in mental health?  A physician could not coerce me this way if it were for a physical ailment.  I am allowed to search for non-medical alternatives to physical ailments, but it is out of the question for mental illness.  I hate that they are allowed (and encouraged legally) to force unwanted treatment, even to the detriment of the client/patient…


scarification creeps me out…

I know it initially sounds kinda weird coming from someone who has a history of self-injury, but looking at the photo they used to advertise a piece on scarification gave me the creeps.  At first glance, I thought it was an all-red tattoo (huh, really cool-looking).  Then I read the topic of the link (my back started to itch and tingle and shivers ran through my body). Ugh.  I guess that just points back to some of the differences between self-injury and body modifications. For many, self-injury is a release or a punishment or a grounding tool, but the key part of that phrase is self.  Scarification and body mods often require it to be done by another (hopefully competent and professional) person.  It is also generally done for aesthetic purposes, and not for any emotional balancing.  There’s no controlling the pain.  There’s no private ritual to it.  It’s just not done for the same reasons.  And I doubt I could ever get anything more than a few piercings or my tattoos done.  The thought of someone else carving into my flesh, or burning me in a manner to create significant scarring brings me back to one of my recurring nightmares as a little kid… I doubt I could ever get it done without some serious trauma symptoms developing after the fact.  That, and I don’t think I could stand the pain… I feel no pain when I self-injure (if/when I do, I stop as soon as it starts).

One of the most hated questions I get from anyone is: were any of your piercings or tattoos done in lieu of self-injuring?  My answer is always No.  While I can see how it could possibly be a more socially acceptable method to getting a similar endorphin-rush, I have not experienced it ever having the same emotional benefits.  It’s just not even in the same league for me.  My body art is purely for aesthetic purposes (and because my tats all mean something to me).  I never try to hide any of that.  My scars on the other hand, I am embarrassed by.  I hate when anyone notices them. It makes me very uncomfortable to have to show them to anyone or have anyone see them.  At the time that I was actively cutting, I wouldn’t even change in front of my wife. To me, self-injury is a very private and personal thing.  It serves a very specific purpose for which nothing else has been able to take over. Body art will never serve that purpose.


boredom

I’m at a loss.  My boredom is kicking in high gear, and it’s that restless, insatiable boredom.  No matter what I start doing, I get sick of it in a few minutes and feel the need to move on.  I know it’s the depression messing with me.  I can’t find anything that’s enjoyable and brings me some inner peace.  I wanted to go to the reptile show this weekend, but I have no money (and I know it would be boring, as the shows around here are super-small and boring on a good day, forget a day when I’m restless and frustrated with myself).  I want to go walking in the woods, but there are no woods here to speak of.  I wish we had a fenced-in yard so I could take the dogs out with me to sit out back.  It would be easier to do something different that way (only if I did it regularly, it wouldn’t be different then).

Part of me wants to work more on the herp room (cleaning the empty cages, re-arranging what I have, trying to sell some of the empty tanks, etc), but as soon as I walk in there, I get frustrated with the amount of work to be done.  I quickly walk out again.

I hate this restlessness.


damn therapy…

Our session with J was rough, as expected, but in a different way.  I came away feeling angry and invalidated.  I think I need to tell her to let up on the grilling about whether or not I feel like I am getting anywhere in individual therapy.  It’s a process… Trust is a process.  It takes time.  We’ve been seeing J for several months, but I have only been with De since mid-August.  She also said to call the IOP back and ask them for their reasoning behind not letting me back (after all, I did not act on my thoughts/urges, but I sought out help).  She thinks that the rule is stupid.  IOP is supposed to be for the added support, and supposed to be there as a step-down from an inpatient stay.  I was up-front with them about the suicidal thinking when I did my intake.  They knew that was an issue.  I did not make a move to act on the feelings, but I’m suddenly too much of a risk for having to have gone inpatient… J says she would go to bat for me about it with them, but she’s guessing it would be better coming from my individual T instead.  I told her I wasn’t sure I wanted to bother… I don’t like having to beg for help and having to convince someone to provide services.  Yeah, they are the only local place that takes my insurance, but… I dunno.  I’ll see what De thinks. I Just don’t get why I should have to fight for something 1)when I feel like crap and have no motivation, and 2)that I don’t feel worthy of.

J also said that L & I needed to be more direct and say things in the moment more often.  I disagree.  I think that leads to misunderstandings, needless fights, and a lot of hurt feelings.  So F-you J!  Grrr!!!  I’m kinda glad we don’t have her next week…

I see De tomorrow.  Hope it goes well.  I know my walls are up out of fear.  I don’t want to be referred out, but I have a feeling I will be (though that just may be the fear talking).  I’m trying not to get my hopes up, or to want to be too open.  I had mentioned that to J earlier, and that’s when she launched into her lecture on therapy being what you make of it.  

Anyway, came home today and tried my hand at sculpture again.  I haven’t done it in YEARS, so it came out pretty crappy.  Also, the Original Sculpey is super-soft and sticky, which makes it harder to work with (at least at this temp).  My piece ended up flopping over a bit, and it took forever to cure (tho I’m pretty sure somewhere the directions say not to do it in the toaster over, but I didn’t want to have to unpack the big oven for a few small pieces).  I left the sculpture really rough in hopes of being able to add more detail with the Dremel tomorrow.  I have never carved anything.  It will definitely be an adventure.  I took some pics of it tonight just in case I screw it up badly tomorrow.  I’ll only post it when it’s done though (or if I mess it up really badly).  There’s just something about some works that you can’t them show off before they are completed…


there she is… (the daunting thought of recovery from depression means the depression is still very present)

there’s the analytical side again. the professional, composed, and “knows her shit” side. the side that could sit with clients for hours on end prodding and supporting and fostering growth and promoting the will to live… she’s working from underneath. it’s a very weird feeling. normally, she would take over and I would feel like this side was in the background. now she feels like she’s lifting a drape of my currently-dominant self and sneaking a pen from underneath to let herself be heard. she’s being more subtle this time. i guess she has no need to overtly take charge at this moment, but she’s making her presence felt. good thing?

yesterday, when talking to De, I couldn’t bring forth my training for the life of me. my head was stalled in itself and I felt horribly stupid. I could not come up with one single need a child may ask for. I couldn’t put myself in the place of anyone else to even guess what a client may need when they reach out. I was stuck at whatever age it was that I first learned that any needs outside of life-or-death would not be met by anyone (a very overt and spoken rule growing up, though I have no idea when I first heard it). it was extremely frustrating. I can only imagine what it feels like at the start of Alzheimer’s, because that is the closest thing I can relate it to: I know I should know the answers, and had in the past, but I just could not raise them from the depths for the life of me. I had wondered to myself where the hell my analytical side was at the time, why wasn’t she able to jump in? and I remember being worried that her jumping in might mean that I lose connection to whatever emotional space I had contacted during session… maybe that’s why she’s less obvious. she’s respecting that I need that connection to the emotion, but she also wants me to know she hasn’t gone away too far.

again I’m catching myself referring to my “sides” as individuals. it’s just more comfortable that way. it’s easier to express how mutually exclusive they all feel. they are not alters in that they have their own way of dress or speech and you see a noticeable difference immediately when one or the other comes about, but they all have their individual roles. they only come about one at a time, and I have trouble seeing the info/perspective/emotions of any of the others at any given time. I may intellectually know something happened (have a memory of the concept of being a competent professional, or the memory of the concept of feeling depressed) but they never occur at the same time, and I can never connect to anything other than my current state. I have learned to successfully and completely compartmentalize myself.  it worked really well in the past, but is causing a lot of hardship in the present.

I was reading through some forums last night, and responded to someone’s post. the response was given from the analytical side. it was weird reading it again and again knowing the emotional space I am currently in.  the poster had mentioned feeling like a fraud because s/he was afraid of getting better.  s/he was afraid of having responsibilities increased and expectations raised at the slightest sign of improvement.  i can relate.  I very much have those same fears (in fact, I’m dealing with the ramifications of my own raised expectations and responsibilities at the moment).  the response I typed out validated the poster’s feelings but also said that the fear comes from the depression: while the depression is still present, it is very difficult to think of not feeling too drained by all the demands of daily life.  once the depression lifts however, things become easier. the little things no longer make you feel like you are walking through waist-deep mud for miles on end… (I can’t take credit for that little gem if a theory, I had read it a few months earlier on that same forum but can totally relate).  when I am not as depressed, I can handle the daily chores and the socializing and the (gasp) work demands.  when I’m depressed however, all of that feels unthinkable. getting back to a point where I have to do all that feels unbearable.  that is just the depression talking though. when the exhaustion lifts and the fog lifts, it’s possible to do all that and not be overwhelmed.  
while I was able to say all this on the forums, I’m having trouble seeing the validity of it at the moment.  everything feels overwhelming and difficult.  the thought of having to feed the animals is daunting.  the thought of being social is almost unbearable.  i want to hide.  i want to back out of everything that I am committed to participating in…  yet I was able to pass on that insight last night.  I have re-read that post at least 5 times this morning, and I still read my response as if I had not seen it (and it was written by someone else).  I re-read it to remind myself that there is truth in it…  but I still can’t connect to what I wrote.  the analytical side came out from underneath the drape, wrote that post, and has slinked back off into the shadows to let me figure out how to deal with all of this myself.  she’s made her presence known, but is not taking over (at least not as obviously, or to the exclusion of either the emotional, dark, or child sides of myself).  if she is taking over, she’s doing it slowly and not totally kicking out everyone else.  it’s very weird. I’m used to her taking over quickly and completely.  the others will take over slowly (most of the time, sometimes it’s a split-second event without warning), but she has always been the one to snap into place in an instant…

anyway, I’m rambling… i still desire space and peace, but not in as much of a fog as I was yesterday.


blah

i. just. don’t. know.

everything’s boring.

I can’t sit still.

but I don’t want to do anything.

this sucks.


hitting walls

I know I’ve blogged about this about a million times recently, but F**K!!!!! I’m trying to get Medicaid, and all I come up against are walls. Again I can’t get through to a live person. I can’t apply through my existing account. Trying to start a new application is so cumbersome!! They need so much information that I just don’t have the energy to keep filling out time and time again. I can’t get someone to help me because I don’t have the benefits to pay for it. I can’t get the benefits without someone helping me sign up for it all… catch 22.
The stupid help I applied for with the local hospital also wants more information. I hate talking on the phone, and I need to try to call them only to tell them I didn’t get any of the money they are saying I got… :/
Can I hide now?


feeling defeated

I know I should be talking about this with the appropriate people, but it is difficult, so I will write it here.

It’s not fair.  It’s not fair that you invite him here and then get mad when I choose to leave for the duration of his visit (I shut him out of my life for a reason, and I really have no desire to let him back in).  You can choose to have him come around, but don’t try to guilt me into sticking around for it.  I don’t want to spend time with him.  That kind of interaction is just not good for me.  I know this last time wasn’t so bad, but I refuse to push my luck.  I have enough trouble with all the crap in my head as it is, I don’t need help going over the edge.

I chose to stay away most of the time last visit because I wanted to limit the chances of me being really triggered.  I want to be completely gone this next time, because I don’t want to deal with all that he brings up in me (and quite frankly, I don’t want to deal with your anger either.  You refuse to tell me what’s bothering you.  You may hint at it, but you leave me pretty much guessing. I don’t want to have to keep guessing).  It’s better for all concerned if we just took off while he was slated to visit.

I get it, we are annoying and frustrating, and you want us gone asap.  We are working on that.  But in the mean time, I refuse to forego everything that helps keep me sane.  I will choose to spend my money how I see fit.  I am saving what I can, and we will be out of your hair asap because that seems like what you desperately want.  Hell, if I could afford to move us out today, I would because you are clearly bothered by our presence.  But that’s just not realistic unless we suddenly win the lottery.

We try to help out around the house, but nothing is ever good enough for you.  It’s always too messy, or too noisy, or too chaotic, or too quiet.  Sorry.  I don’t know how to win with that.  Like I said, we are working on getting out of here so that you can go back to your quiet and solitary existence.  My bad for assuming I could move back to my own house and be welcome.

I know the dogs are bothersome.  I try to work on it, but I can’t do that alone.  I had asked for help with it, but it seems to be too much to ask.  Coming here has thrown everyone off.  It will take extra work to get them settled again (it’s also really hard to do anything with them outside of the house down here.  The state and municipalities make it impossible to go anywhere with them).

I’m also sorry that trying to include you in what we do outside of the house makes you so uncomfortable.  I’m sorry us leaving the house bothers you (but then again, staying home seems to do the same thing).  I know I can’t handle being cooped up all the time, and I’m pretty sure it drives L nuts also.  If we could take the dogs, we would, but again, too hot and too restrictive around here,

I feel like everything we do is wrong.  I feel like everything we do is too little.  If we don’t to the dishes, that’s a problem.  If we do the dishes but don’t do them correctly, that’s a problem.  If we clean up, we never do it to your standards.  If we don’t, you just make passive-aggressive comments about the mess, but don’t attempt to help take care of it.  I feel like we can’t win… and I feel like we can’t ever talk about it because, at this point, you are too angry and we are too defensive.

_________________________________________

I don’t want to do this anymore.  I don’t want to keep running from things and trying to dodge bullets flying at me from the dark…  I want to fix my shit and move on with my life.  I miss my “friends” and my safe spaces.  I miss being away from all this chaos and triggers.  I miss having some idea of where to turn for support…  I hate feeling so lost and hopeless and broken.  I want to figure shit out, get off disability, and get back to working again… I want my freedom back…


making things meaningful

So, in an attempt to find a way to make money fast, and relieve some of the financial pressures on us, I stumbled upon a blog that is all about doing what you love, and making what you do meaningful (the guy makes money off of this, which is how it connected to making money fast), but his original idea is founded in doing what you love…

That got me thinking… I have this blog that, while mainly started for myself, I would really like it to also help others. I began thinking about my struggles to find treatment that works. What are the barriers to finding other helpful and effectual treatments for trauma? What are the instinctual defenses and coping strategies we turn to when we don’t know what we are supposed to turn to?

It reminded me of the way EMDR came about. The woman who developed it noticed that she would go for a walk thinking about her problem, noticed that she unconsciously looked from side to side during her walk, and noticed that she felt better when she returned from her walk. So I began thinking about what my instincts are when I’m stressed. I thought about what others do. People around me are constantly talking and talking about the things that bother them. I do the same thing, I need to get it out and tell someone (or more than one person) what happened or what is bothering me. I think it is not only the telling, but also the audience. So I have 2 ideas that I need to flesh out.

The first is to actually tell the details of the trauma. This poses some dilemmas. One is that it triggers the hell out of me to think about or tell my trauma, so I will need to have support after the telling (that, or I am rendered speechless by the pure force of the emotion and the events in my head, which makes the telling piece difficult). The other is that it has the potential to overwhelm the other person… Clinicians and treaters are just people. They are people with their own troubles, fears, and vulnerabilities. To come up with a viable treatment model that utilizes this spilling of trauma, I’d have to develop (or utilize) a really good support system for the treaters as well as the clients. I would want someone to be able to talk to whenever I needed them, either in person or over the phone. I would want to provide this, or something similar, for the treaters also. I would want to ensure that talk about suicidal thoughts or self-injury would prompt support, and not automatic hospitalization. This somewhat builds on the DBT concepts of riding the wave of emotions, but this time with support and someone “holding your hand” through it all.  While I see the value in learning to handle your triggers and urges on your own, there is also something very powerful about having someone there with you to witness it.  I have always felt this want for someone to be there through the experience; to help keep me safe when I can’t do it anymore.  I turned that desire into action one day while I was working with a particularly difficult adolescent.  She was bent on destroying the house, and pushing the limits of all the staff present (and her house-mates),  At one point, she managed to turn on the stove and was about to put her hands on it to burn herself.  None of what we were saying was getting through to her, so I stepped in front of the stove and took her hands.  I held them as she tried to push past me (she was about a foot taller and a good 80lbs heavier than me, and I’m not small).  I told her again and again that I would keep her safe and I would keep the house safe.  In that moment that I held her wrists, she looked at me and something clicked.  She moved away from the stove after several minutes (and a few half-assed attempts to pull her hands free of mine) and stopped pushing my buttons for the rest of the day.  It only lasted like that for the rest of the shift, but it made a difference for that time.  I think it’s a very powerful thing to have someone there with you in a non-threatening way to help keep you safe when you cannot do it yourself…

The other idea is a spin-off of having witnesses to the journey.  It also builds on a theory I saw on a PBS special.  That theory advocated the telling and re-telling of the trauma until it lost its impact.  They did not flesh out all the points of the treatment plan, but from what they showed, I think it has some merits.  Anyway, and please tell me if this is a horrible idea, I think it might be helpful to do this in an intensive group setting.  Wait! you may say, this will cause a huge domino effect of triggering… Well, that’s kind of the point.  I noticed in groups, the most benefit I got from many of them was when someone’s experiences triggered something in me and I got a chance to deal with it.  This would be tricky as a group where the point is to tell triggering things, and not just walk on eggshells around topics.  But I think with the proper support available (MANY treaters on hand, at least 1.5+ per person in group, because some people need more than one person to bring them back), this could be a viable path to dealing with all the crap we don’t always think of accessing during treatment.  The groups could start with a topic and go from there.  Forget necessarily censoring the details of the event… While I understand that ambiguity of the event to another may help them access their own demons, I find it tends to limit me in the telling of the event.

There are definitely details to flesh out, and many, many conversations with other professionals to figure out the viability of these theories… But I’m determined to figure out a treatment option that works for me… and hopefully I can come up with something that may help others too…

Bring on the firestorm of criticism for this horrible idea! (It goes against all convention and current thinking and insurance company standards…)


On Suicide

I think this is an interesting and important conversation that needs to happen more often. I think suicide is an elephant in the room that so many are afraid to talk about because of the taboos around it, and the knee-jerk reactions even some providers have to it… I have been privileged enough to have many thought-provoking conversations with my former therapist…

Gukira

Writing on suicide is dangerous because suicide is deemed unthinkable. To think about it, then, and here syntax betrays what I’m going to claim, is understood as thinking about how to do it or when to do it. To think about it is to contemplate it. Thus, one says that one is not thinking about it, but even raising the prospect elicits concern and paranoia: why would one think about it if one were not thinking about it? I want to stay with this formulation, because I think its unthinkability is a problem, albeit a problem tied to the unthinkability of death, and the political and aesthetic imperative to think through life and to cultivate thriving life.

Because suicide always elicits confession, let me tell someone else’s story.

My cousin killed himself when I was a freshman. I was in Kenya during my first (and only) summer vacation, and, as…

View original post 895 more words


Fears

I ditched the job I accepted earlier in the week… it sounded sketchy. They wanted me to do “creative billing” and tack on extra charges… I just don’t feel comfortable with that. So now I feel lost. I gave up the only work prospect because my gut gave me an uneasy feeling about it. I have learned to go with my gut. The only reason I regret it is that now I have to start over again with the job search. I have no leads, and there are no hopes of any money coming in soon. It’s frustrating. I want to have some resources, but there are none… and its making me feel depressed and hopeless. Everything I used to do to make money is unavailable to me right now. That leads to wanting to hide from the world. Luckily, it hasn’t triggered my self-harm urges. Oh, and I need to cancel next week’s appointment with D because I don’t have the $8 to see him. It just all sucks…


My comfort with him blew my mind

I’ve always had difficulty trusting men in positions of power (real or perceived). I was very,  very cautious about the thought of seeing a male clinician,  but since the rest of my visits so far have been less-than-productive, I decided to try. 
I met with D for the first time today.  He is a doctoral student at a local university,  and supervised by the psychologist I had hoped to work with.  He was calm and affirming and in no way intimidating.  I found myself easily taking to him,  and spilling more than I intended.  I was also more honest than I have been since I got down here.  Yes,  he used the textbook responses,  and I could pinpoint what technique he was using and when… but as much as he seems very inexperienced,  he had a very calming presence.  Everyone has to start somewhere.  I just hope I’m not too much for him and he runs screaming from the building one day…
I see the new EAP lady again tomorrow. It will be my last session. While she was nice,  I just didn’t feel like we clicked.  Our focus lays in different spots… and today was too late to cancel. Maybe she can get me hooked up with other services to see if we can get out of this hole we are in.


Early morning pre-coffee thoughts

Why is it that certain words trigger such a strong reaction in me?  There are sentiments that,  when expressed to me, make my blood boil and take away filters for kindness and respect.  I’m specifically thinking about all the references to god and how people have a need to tell me that their god will make it all better if I just believed… The truth about that is that, yes,  your beliefs can improve or deteriorate a situation. But it doesn’t mean that if I don’t believe in your god,  things will stay the same or get worse for me.  Faith can be very helpful,  or very crippling depending on your beliefs,  but it won’t change an abusive situation,  or help your finances. 

As I was trying to figure out why religion is such a triggering issue for me, I remembered the first time I disclosed my abuse to someone that should have been able to help.  I was told to “pray about it and God will make it all better.”  That was the sentiment that was supposed to help keep me and the people I cared about safe. There was no follow up requesting details.  There was no mention of other possible help on the way.  “Just pray about it” and all the physical and emotional anguish will disappear.  Bullshit.  Things don’t work that way.  No amount of prayer healed my aunt. It didn’t stop my dad from being a huge jerk. It didn’t stop his sister from doing all the shit she did.  It didn’t stop my then-boyfriend from assaulting me.  And it didn’t bring me any solace in the least.  So bullshit. Prayer,  gods, and religion don’t make anything better.  Standing up for yourself does. Reaching out to the right people does.  Fighting like hell does.  But religion?  It brings guilt, resentment, and learned helplessness. 
That’s why those stupid posts about bringing god back to schools, and those about trusting god make my blood boil.  I had religion in my schools and it didn’t stop, or even lessen, the violence and abuse.  It didn’t make kids more tolerant of others (quite the opposite actually).  It didn’t prevent students from making bad choices, and it didn’t make the campus safer…  Don’t force your belief system on me or anyone.  You are free to believe whatever you want,  but please stop acting like it’s the only valid belief system in the universe.


i was used to it, and now it’s different

I was all comfortable in my blog page being the way it was when I first came onto wordpress, but now they have gone and changed it… I love blue and all, don’t get me wrong, but the black and grey felt so much more appropriate… and what’s with changing the titles of the functions… now they have me all confused.

On another note, I got a job offer. The pay sucks, but the potential for advancement is great. I also get no benefits (which sucks because I will be losing the ones through my wife as her company continues to drop the ball with her transfer), no paid time off… but I set my own schedule, and work as much or as little as I want (and clients need me) in a given week. It will be tough, as I like having the security of knowing I will at least be getting X number of dollars every paycheck, but again, this is better than nothing, and the learning opportunities are HUGE. I have to formally accept the position on Monday, then meet with my only other co-worker in the state for shadowing, training, and meet-and-greets with my new clients. I will start out with 5, so that guarantees me 5 hours a week… now to get up to the other 35… There will be meetings, calls, and paperwork, so hopefully I can turn that 5 clients into at least 20 hours every week. Here’s to hoping… and hopefully soon I will get a bigger case-load. This will also help me in getting my wife signed up for state services (and possibly myself), as this state does not recognize my marriage, so she’s technically below the poverty level even if I’m working.

Now, I will have to pull it together and function at my best to make this all work, but it sounds cool. Case Managers here have more responsibilities and authority than they did in my last state… That will be cool. While I won’t be doing therapy, I will have more therapeutic contact with my clients and gain the skills I have been dying to get and use since graduating with my BA… And maybe we will be able to save enough money to get our credits out of the endless pit they are in and be able to buy a house… We need our own space.


I can’t win against my defenses

When I have no support,  I’m falling apart. When I finally get someone to talk to,  I suddenly can’t remember why it was that I needed it so badly just a few days ago. 

That’s the story of my defenses.  I freak out when I don’t have the support,  but can manage to hold it together when I do. Great.  When the clinician asked me today what I hoped to get out of our remaining 2 sessions together, I couldn’t think of a single thing other then support… 4 days ago,  I couldn’t see past the huge black cloud surrounding me.  Today I can’t remember the look of it. 

Maybe part of it comes from knowing that I will likely not see her after these 3 sessions.  I don’t think I will have insurance again any time soon,  and I can’t afford a self-pay if it’s not a sliding scale.

I see the intern guy for the first time next week.  I’m hoping I am comfortable enough to work with him.  I can afford his fee ($8) once in a while until I get a job… and maybe I can work on my distrust of men with him.  I was able to connect with a male clinician at the trauma program.  Maybe I can do it again…


Hanging by a thread

The universe is conspiring to screw us… I swear,  someone up there hates me.  Things go ok for a moment, then everything crashes again.  Our phones are shut off again. We had paid enough to just get it back on, and now it was apparently only for 2 weeks.  It went offat noon today… all my applications for work have my number on it, but it is useless.  And I still can’t find a therapist to see… I had to cancel my Friday appointment because I will not have the copay… I’m so on my last thread… maybe that EAP lady was right… maybe I’m just a lost cause… hoplessly doomed to this shit for the rest of my life.