Tag Archives: childhood abuse

16:54 – In a pretty crappy place right now

24 Sep

So yeah, I spent the weekend getting drunk by myself. Sitting here pouring glass after glass of wine and drinking it at a ridiculous speed. I don’t know what I hoped to achieve by doing that, I guess I was trying to block shit out. However the reality was that I just got more and more depressed, my mood dropped a little further down with every gulp I took. I did a lot of crying which maybe wasn’t such a bad thing, maybe those emotions had to come out of me, but I’m still having emotional outbursts with no warning signs today.

I continued to self harm Friday, Saturday and Sunday. Despite being under the influence I seemed to manage to have some control over it as the cuts are reasonably superficial. I think I just kept reminding myself that if I just pushed down that little bit harder then it would be time to go back off to A&E again and I’m still sticking to my story with them that the stitches I’ve got were as a result of an accident and not self harming.

I am supposed to be going to get my stitches taken out today but I just feel so low and so miserable that I can’t face going out. I don’t suppose an extra day will make much difference, I’ve had times in the past where I just couldn’t face going to A&E and left stitches in a few more days than they were supposed to be in for. I was also supposed to go to an appointment with CPN#2 at 12:30 today – I got up at 9am and forced myself to go in for a shower, got dressed, sat and watched some TV, let the dogs out to do the toilet, then around 11am took my clothes back off and put my pj’s back on. Sat and watched 12:30 come and go, knowing that I should phone and least concoct some excuse for missing yet another appointment but my brain just seemed incapable of thinking so I didn’t attend and didn’t phone to apologise either.

I think I have come to the conclusion that I don’t find that I get any benefit from my appointments with CPN#2. In fact, I have worked with a number of CPN’s over the years and I’ve never really achieved much with any of them. The ones who have been good are the ones that haven’t stuck around for long. Typical really. So now I don’t know what to do – do I phone and leave a message for CPN#2 and make yet another appointment, drag myself along to it, sit there finding it no help whatsoever, make another appointment, repeat the process over and over again? Or do I somehow try to find the strength to be honest with her? I don’t know if I could do it face to face but the thought has crossed my mind that it might be an idea to write her a letter explaining why I’m not finding these sessions useful, therefore I either cancel them or just don’t attend.

My main problem with them is that CPN#2 likes to work in a very structured sort of way. I go in and she takes a sheet of paper that she calls the ‘agenda’ then asks me to pick two or three topics that I’d like to discuss during our session. If I go off at a little bit of a tangent she quickly pulls me straight back on topic by saying “this isn’t on our agenda, please stick to the agenda” which leaves me feeling like I’m being told off for trying to explain something. I don’t know if I’m explaining this very well? It’s like she wants our sessions to be like business meetings – have an agenda with a few bullet points – discuss them very specifically without really allowing any emotions to come into the conversation. Sometimes you need to go off at a little bit of a tangent to explain things better and when someone is sitting tapping their pen against their notebook it is extremely off putting. Then add to that her latest thing of propping her phone up on the middle of the table with the stopwatch app counting the minutes, constantly flashing, distracting me… yeah… it’s just not helpful.

I understand that she wants to use the sessions to get me to cover the basics of Compassion Focused Therapy until such time that I can see the psychologist again to learn it all in more detail, but surely I should be able/allowed to talk about how I’m feeling as well? Like if I had gone today there is just no way I could have told her about the self harming or about how low my mood has been/still is. We have absolutely no bond/no relationship/no therapeutic relationship/nothing. I cannot open up to her because I’m scared to mention anything that isn’t set on her little business agenda. So I end up not going to my appointments, not engaging with the mental health team, sitting and waiting for a letter to appear in my mail one day telling me she has discharged me as I don’t attend and she could be seeing someone else in my place. Part of me wishes she would just do that, but I carry on clinging to this little bit of hope that it won’t be too much longer now until I see the psychologist again and at least I know I can get along with her and work with her.

So here I am hiding indoors again. It’s now week three of my part time uni course and I haven’t even finished week one’s work. I sit and try to read, try to absorb it, try to understand it but it’s like there is an invisible mental block getting in the way and nothing sinks in. So I give up and tell myself I’ll try again tomorrow. But tomorrow comes and goes and I’m no further forward. At the moment there is still a chance I could catch up but for that to happen I need motivation. Right now I have no motivation at all. I just sit here and cry, cut myself a few more times, cry some more, never really getting anywhere. I can’t even go and sit on my (personal) facebook because I just cannot handle all these pregnancy announcements, baby announcements, baby talk in any way shape or form. Of course I know it’s something I can’t hide from forever but right now it’s all just too triggering for me. My mental state feels pretty fragile like the slightest thing will cause it to fall apart.

Although I fully intended to get drunk on Friday night I actually didn’t plan on repeating it on Saturday night. However, I popped up to see my parents to wish them a nice holiday (they left on Sunday morning and get back Monday next week) and just as I was leaving their phone started to ring. I saw on the caller display that it was my Aunt that I have nothing to do with these days (this is my Aunt who was the mother of my older cousin that abused me for years – he’s dead now for any new readers) and as soon as I saw her name flash up on the caller display I knew instantly what she was phoning for. My abuser cousin has a daughter who has been brought up by my Aunt as he couldn’t provide for her due to either being in prison or when he was out of prison he’d go straight back to his life of heroin and crack addiction. The mother of his daughter was also an addict. Despite who her parents were I still just looked at her like a little cousin and we used to be quite close until a couple of years ago when my stupid Aunt told her about the abuse. I had never wanted her to know about it but my Aunt is an alcoholic and doesn’t think about what she is saying half the time. So, the girl was about 14 at this point and of course she reacted to the news in a very angry way. She splattered messages all over my facebook and I made the decision to write her a long email explaining everything. I wrote about it on here and it was quite controversial to say the least – some people commented to say they thought I’d done the right thing – others said she was too young to have been told about it and that I shouldn’t have sent the email. But that’s all in the past now and sadly I haven’t spoken to her since.

My Mum told me several months ago that the girl is now 16 and pregnant. Firstly the fact that yet another person just accidentally got pregnant at the drop of a hat upset me. Secondly I convinced myself that she would have a little boy and name him after her father (as I think there is a bit of childhood idolising of him on her part even though he was never around as a father to her). I knew the baby was due in September and sure enough that was what my Aunt was phoning to tell my Mum. Thankfully she had a little girl. Even though I don’t see her any more or have any contact with her, I think it would have really got to me if she’d named an innocent little baby after the monster my abusing cousin was. But yeah, just hearing about yet another baby started making my head feel all bonkers so on the way back from my parents house I went and bought three bottles of wine and drank the lot over Saturday night and Sunday afternoon.

So that’s where I am at the moment. Alone, lonely, self isolating, unable to study, crying a hell of a lot, cutting myself, missing appointments and generally feeling extremely low. I have an appointment with my rape crisis support worker tomorrow which I’m going to make an effort to go to as she is pretty much the only person that I can just sit and be honest with at the moment. And if I make it to that appointment and get out of the house then maybe I’ll manage to get to A&E as well to have these stitches taken out. As for the rest of today and tonight I have absolutely no idea how they are going to pan out. If my mood stays like this then it looks like it’ll be yet another shitty night to try and get through. Truthfully I don’t feel 100% safe at the moment and I do feel a little bit worried about where this is all heading. But if I can just get through tonight in one piece then maybe tomorrow’s appointment with lovely support worker will help to calm my crazy brain down again.

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00:21 – Terrified of the wrong side winning

12 May

“Do you know what I’m really terrified of? The wrong side winning. It’s as though my mind has split in two and I have no control over it. And the thing is, I’m beginning to get confused about which side is right and which is wrong.”

(Victoria Leatham)

 

That quote above couldn’t be more true right now. My mind is split in two and it is driving me mad, it’s tormenting me constantly, it’s trying so hard to pull me backwards and make me fall with an almighty bang. I have two things going on inside my head right now and the voices keep cropping up as well, making sure that my head is constantly busy.

Over the past couple of weeks I have been finding it incredibly difficult to watch television. I feel as though everything I watch is trying to trigger me, like the programmes are being deliberately controlled by someone to make sure just about anything I try to watch either leaves me feeling panicky or in floods of tears. There are two reasons for this, one is that I can’t seem to watch anything even a tiny bit upsetting or I end up in these moments of intense sadness and tears. The other is because there have been so many alleged cases of historical sexual abuse by soap stars and TV presenters reported recently that I feel as though every time I see a news report it is trying to fuck my head up. I start to wonder if this is a deliberate attempt to see if watching TV could send me properly bonkers.

I don’t know if this will make any sense, but some of the men accused I associate with happy childhood memories of seeing them in kids TV programs and others I have kind of grown up with as TV soap stars. And because my childhood wasn’t always happy as I was abused myself for a large part of it, when I see these news reports this noise starts up in my head just of laughter, a sick laughter that goes on and on until I switch the TV off. It’s not good enough just to put it on standby, it must be switched off at the wall. When I see/hear these reports I feel as though the evil laughter in my head is just one final way of reminding me that even the innocent happy memories of my childhood can be tarnished so easily.

One part of me reacts to it all angrily – very angrily – and I find myself sitting here thinking that all men are complete wankers, that I will never have another relationship because at the age of 31 I’ve had so many bad experiences with men that I genuinely do not believe I could ever trust one again. Even in the last week I have seen yet again just how much they can leave me feeling dirty and ashamed. I got talking to a guy online and after a few nights talking online he asked if he could have my number. Like a fucking idiot I gave it to him and he called me for a chat. It was pretty awkward at first as I sort of clammed up and didn’t feel like I had much to say for myself – I fucking hate phone conversations, they make me feel really anxious when it’s someone I don’t know. But I stuck with it as I’d had my medication and waited to see if I would calm down a bit and be able to chat away to him. Eventually I did start to calm and we talked about loads of different things. It was him who said he had just seen someone posting one of those stupid sick jokes that always go round when the media report that well known people have been arrested on rape or abuse charges. He asked me what I thought of it and as I’d already been honest about my mental health problems I figured I’d try telling him the truth. So I told him I hated hearing about it all as it triggered a lot of memories from times I had been abused. He sounded a bit sad when I said that and asked me what had happened. I didn’t go into great detail about the adult experiences but told him I’d been abused by an older cousin throughout my childhood. He began to ask a lot of questions and I thought it was just his way of asking to understand what I’d gone through, he sounded like he was asking it in a caring sort of way, and even though it felt a bit weird to be having such a deep conversation with someone who was still a stranger it also felt nice to be able to be open from the start with someone. He began to ask more details – how old was I when it first happened? What did he make me do to him? What did he do to me? How did he get me to keep it a secret? I answered the first couple of questions feeling OK but the more questions he asked the more I started to feel a bit uncomfortable. I could hear his breathing going funny when I was talking. At one point I thought he had fallen asleep as the breathing became so loud. And then it dawned on me what he was doing on the other end of the phone. I didn’t want to believe it but I couldn’t ignore it, I had to ask him what he was doing? Why was he breathing like that? Had he fallen asleep? How I wish he had fallen asleep because I was completely unprepared for his upfront answer that he was “getting off”, what did I think he’d do if I started “talking like that”?

I hung up immediately and burst into tears, went over to the wall and stood there banging my head against it over and over until the tears stopped. I had allowed it to happen. I was to blame. I made him aroused by telling him about some of my most painful experiences. I felt so stupid. So fucking stupid. But it is just another incident to remind me that apart from my Dad and my brother, I must look at every man like he has the potential to hurt me even if it starts making my head go crazy. I’ve been getting these rushes of ideas going through my head, things that could land me in serious trouble if I were to act on them, like carrying some kind of weapon so that if I ever get caught off guard I’d be protected. But obviously that is highly illegal in this country. Usually when I am in some type of depressive or paranoid episode I prefer to go out during the night when nobody is around. The dark makes me feel safe and protected, the day time busy-ness makes me paranoid and anxious. But this time it’s different, the daytime busy-ness protects me and keeps me safe. At night time I am vulnerable and terrified. I might not be allowed to carry any type of weapon to protect myself but I do let one of the dogs off his lead and walk with it wrapped tightly around my hand, I hold the thick metal end tightly as images rush through my head telling me to make sure I’m ‘ready’ if anyone tries to hurt me in any way. Thankfully there is only one walk a day that I have to do when it’s dark but it is getting harder and harder because I have to stay so alert to anyone else whose around. I can’t relax, my heart beats so fast I can hear it in my chest and I keep one of the dogs next to me at all times because I know they will bark like mad if anyone approaches us, especially in the dark.

When I’m not thinking of all possible scenarios whereby a man could hurt me I am thinking about all the possible ways I could hurt myself. It’s not enough just having these violent thoughts towards potential ‘abusers’ – my thoughts race off in another direction telling me that I clearly deserve to be hurt and abused because it’s happened to me by so many men at various ages throughout my life. I must attract it somehow. They must be able to tell just by looking at me that by slipping something into a drink or by acting all caring and sweet to get me into a conversation with them that they’ll be able to make me do things for their perverted pleasures. They must just be able to tell by looking at me that they’ll be able to use me for what they want then fuck off and leave me to pick up the pieces. I told my support worker at Rape Crisis all of this on Wednesday and she told me it’s not uncommon for women who have been abused in some way to go on to have a string of abusive relationships or experiences. I think the sick fuckers can smell vulnerability and just have to try their luck. So yeah, along with the thoughts of wanting to castrate every man who has ever hurt me there are also a lot of thoughts and urges to self harm. I want to see the rivers of blood trickling out of me, I want to grab a blade and cut and cut and cut. But I don’t want to go to A&E, my legs are still in an absolute mess from the last self harm episode, I’ve got an area on one of the cuts where I think I’ve done some kind of nerve damage as there is a bit about the size of a 50p which is completely numb, I can’t feel a thing when I press down on it, even with something sharp.

It terrifies me to have thoughts about hurting other people and I have to keep telling myself over and over that I’m just being overly alert and that it IS safe to keep going outside. I know I would never act on them unless I was put into an extremely threatening position by someone. But then one part of my head screams so loudly that I deserve for another man to hurt me, I deserve to be used and abused and left even more broken than I am just now. And that just feeds the images and the urges to self harm again, because I believe I deserve to be cut, scarred and to look as disgusting as I do. I should look even more disgusting than I do now, I should be covered from head to toe in self mutilated wounds. Then no-one would ever want to come near me again. By making myself less and less attractive I can protect myself, or so the racing thoughts and occasional voices blurt out to me.

What was the quote I started with again?

“Do you know what I’m really terrified of? The wrong side winning. It’s as though my mind has split in two and I have no control over it. And the thing is, I’m beginning to get confused about which side is right and which is wrong.”

Which is the wrong side? I guess it’s the thoughts of hurting someone. I can’t control the thoughts, but I can control my actions. I think. And like the quote says, I truly am terrified of this side winning.

So which is the right side? I wish there was a side which believed that one day I will recover from all of this and achieve some things with my life. I wish I could believe there is a right side and it is going to be a place where if not happy, I’m at least content. But I don’t believe that is going to happen so instead I have to wonder if the right side is actually all these thoughts and encouraging voices telling me to hurt myself? Hurting myself feels right. It’s what I do. It makes me focus on a different kind of pain, a physical ache feels so much better than an emotional one. After all, I can see what is causing my pain when I can see that I’m covered in stitches and the variety of wounds all at various stages of healing.

I simply do not believe that I am ever going to escape these intrusive thoughts or escape from the self harming behaviours. I have been self harming for 17/18 years now. The voices have come and gone so many times I’ve lost count over the past 4 years or so. Feeling different in every way from every one I know has been a part of my life for too long now, and whilst I may have avoided any psych hospital admissions for over a year, my head is still very messed up. I don’t feel in control, I feel like something dark and sinister is controlling me, something that only gives me very occasional glimpses of feeling normal or even the tiniest glimpse of happiness, and then snatches them away from me… coming back every single time to ensure they can torment me a little bit more.

I still have so much more to say but I think I better end this post now, it’s got pretty long and the more I write the more messed up my head gets. I was also going to mention that whilst I did go to see my support worker on Wednesday, I phoned up with an excuse not to see CPN#2 on Friday. I think I just didn’t want to take the chance of opening up and all of the above pouring out because I already know what her response will be. It will be the usual bollocks about how I “will get better” and “will get through this” I just need to “learn coping techniques” that will work for me and then my life will somehow miraculously be cured of any mentalness. Plus there is the risk if you mention even having violent thoughts towards others – even if you know you wouldn’t act on them – that they still might get concerned enough to start assessing if you could really be a risk to others. And I’m not… well so long as no one tries to hurt me I’m not. Isn’t that a complete contradiction? I don’t want anyone to hurt me yet the only way I know to cope is to hurt myself? It might not make a great deal of sense to anyone apart from me.

On that note I think it is time for bed. I might try and write some more tomorrow if I feel like I can write something that makes a bit more sense. I don’t know if any of the 2500 words I’ve just written even make any sense at all. But my medication is kicking in and I need to try and sleep… I’m sure I’ve been writing this for over an hour now.

Goodnight folks, and I hope you’re all having a good weekend xx

13:40 – Quetiapine at max dose, praying it works

9 Jan

This morning I got up early and decided to make an appointment to see lovely GP rather than just handing in a prescription request form. Now that I no longer see lovely social worker, the only person apart from Mr Psychiatrist who has been there consistently over the past few years is lovely GP. I was feeling really anxious when I went in to see her and told her that I don’t know if it’s just because I don’t really know new CPN yet, but that I’m not finding the appointments helpful because new CPN always wants to talk about the positives and whether she likes it or not I need to talk about the negatives as well. I need to talk about them to make sense of them and I need to talk about them because they are likely to affect my mood and destabilise me.

So lovely GP sat down her pen, turned her chair round and asked me what was making me feel so anxious. I rambled about the self harm urges being very very much at the forefront of my mind and I rambled about the persistent giggle and mocking comments I hear in my head. I told her how scared I was that this may not be my thoughts that I was hearing but that I was hearing a voice again. She said that Mr Psychiatrist had written in his last letter that my Quetiapine (Seroquel) could be increased from 600mg to 750mg a day if needed. Four weeks ago I jumped from 600 to 700 and today she said she is increasing it to 750mg. So that is me back on the maximum dosage. She also arranged for me to have routine bloods done on Monday morning.

I have been on the maximum dose before but whilst I’d had fairly good results from Quetiapine at around the 500mg mark it stopped working and so we increased and increased but it would only work for a very short amount of time and then the voices would come back. The voices got stronger and 750mg still wasn’t enough to stop them so we tried three other anti-psychotics: olanzapine (zyprexa) then haloperidol (haldol) and then amisulpride. None of them worked. And all of them apart from Quetiapine gave me horrible side effects.

So here I am back on the max dose and I have to go back and see her in 4 weeks time on the 6th of Feb which also happens to be the day of my next appointment with Mr Psychiatrist so I guess that will work out quite well if any medication changes are needed. I know the mocking voice and giggle are contributing to me feeling anxious and a bit paranoid. This in turn makes me distressed. So if I go and see Mr Psychiatrist and tell him I’m still feeling anxious and distressed but am now on the maximum dosage then he is likely to say he wants to try something else. I am hoping and praying that this extra 50mg is enough to quieten my head back down to a bearable level.

Anyway, lovely GP gave me prescriptions and then made a point of telling me that things will get better, things can get better and that it’s important to be aware that I have taken on something positive – my university course – and even though it’s part time and it’s from home it’s a good start. She encouraged me to try and remember the positives when I was feel low, but then she also looked at things from the other angle and acknowledged that I have been self harming for a very long time and it’s been my coping mechanism for so long that it’s such a hard thing to stop doing. But most importantly (to me) she didn’t sit and offer me praise for going 3-4 months without doing it, instead she said she could see why the urges to do it would be strong at the moment, 3 months is a long time to go without doing something that was (at times) a daily habit.

She told me to think of it a bit like quitting smoking. I’ve smoked daily for years. I smoke more when I’m stressed and less when I’m calmer. Just like self harming. When I’m not smoking I can be sure it won’t be long before the bells start ringing in my head telling me I need another cigarette. If I was quitting the first few days would be very hard. The first few weeks I would probably have the worst cravings and even though I had gone a few weeks without a cigarette I would be thinking about having one a lot of the time. I’d battle back and forth with myself and try to convince myself if I just had one cigarette then it would satisfy the cravings but it would make the battle to quit even harder for myself. However if I managed to get through it, deal with the cravings but not give in to them, then I would get to a place where six months down the line the cravings would be a lot less intense. And a year down the line they would be even less. The cravings would probably last for a very long time and may never go away completely, but I would have learned and developed the skills to cope with them and let them pass without acting on them.

So it remains to be seen whether I can carry on battling against them or whether the urges end up winning. But as new CPN continually reminds me, it is only me who can stop it from happening again… If only it were that easy…

I only had about 10 or 15 minutes with lovely GP but I felt like I had got a lot off my chest. She let me talk, calmed me down, looked for a solution and just generally made me feel like I’d been listened too. After leaving the doctors surgery I went to the pharmacy and sat for the usual half an hour that it takes them to make up my 4 weekly prescriptions (I only get a week at a time, I guess they still don’t see me as being stable enough to get a month’s worth of tablets at a time).

I also remembered I have an appointment with my support worker from Rape Crisis today. I get on with her a lot better than new CPN and although when I’m there it’s to talk about both childhood abuse and the assault back in August, topics such as self harm come up quite a lot and she is very knowledgeable about it and completely non-judgemental which is nice. Self harm and abuse seem to go hand in hand quite a lot, probably because the abuse memories make you feel so vile and disgusting and confused and messed up and then the self harm is like this magic wand that just seems to release all of those feelings and offer a temporary break from it all.

So I hope that tonight I will feel a little calmer, the mix of the increased dose of Quetiapine and having a good appointment with lovely GP and (hopefully) a proper good chat with support worker should all leave me feeling like I’ve got a lot off my chest today.

I might write another little update later if anything comes up at my appointment with support worker that I need to have a ramble about.

18:48 – Meeting new CPN & how everything has gone to fuck

1 Nov

Everything is fucked up right now. My head being the main part of ‘everything’. I am struggling so hard to find any concentration, motivation or focus on anything. I had a tutorial for my uni course yesterday afternoon and I felt like I didn’t have a clue about what to say so just sat there quietly reading it all. I am contemplating emailing my student advisor and just making her aware that things aren’t good right now, but I’d rather just see if I can push on with some of my reading and see if I can narrow the gap a bit.

Yesterday I also had a support session with the woman from rape crisis and we are starting to talk more in detail now about how I am still affected from my childhood abuse and the assault in August has just kinda catapulted back a load of old hidden away memories. She frequently asks why I don’t feel deserving of things or why I play down achievements when I should be letting myself be excited or proud of myself or whatever.

I met my new permanent CPN today. I’m not entirely sure yet what I make of her. She was doing my head in at times because she kept saying all this shit about how I was “articulate and intelligent” and then making me feel like I couldn’t tell her how I was feeling because it was all going to sound crazy. And she’s telling me I’m this “intelligent young woman”… At times it felt almost patronising like at one point she asked me to explain how my anxiety makes me feel and when I said the word “paranoid” she then made me explain what paranoia meant and kept saying things like it was a “huge word” and a word used to describe “people who are very unwell” and all this shit and I just completely lost interest in whatever she was going on about. She then dragged up my old crisis plan and gave me a copy of it with a blank crisis plan and she wants me to fill it in for when I see her next Friday. I cannot be fucked even looking at it.

I have been eating takeaways. I’m 1-2 weeks behind on my uni course. My thoughts race too fast. I’m constantly thinking about self harming. I’m also constantly thinking that I can’t cope in this world, it’s all overwhelming me and I just want to run away and hide for a while. It feels like everything has gone to fuck, the weight loss is currently weight gain…. the uni course has gone from a great distraction to a massive worry… the housing transfer application has gone from me feeling hopeful to completely hopeless… Christmas is just around the corner so the TV adverts are starting up, the shop windows will soon be full of Santa’s and the little Elves and Reindeer and toys and it will be another ‘festive’ season to get through both single and childless (but with a very bright shining star in the sky).

Ugh I just completely and utterly feel like who am I kidding? I’ll never get the career I want, I can’t stay stable enough for more than a month before everything in my life starts to go tits up again. Or everything in my head does. And I know it’s too soon to say but I just got a first impression from her that I am going to find her very annoying with all her “you can do anything…” – “you’re so articulate…” – “you are doing so well with your recovery…” Just like shut up. Seriously. I don’t want to hear those things, it makes me uncomfortable, I don’t like any type of praise, I don’t deserve it, please STOP saying it!!!

I so want to do something bad. I’m not entirely sure what, but my brain is squirming with ideas from the ‘little-bit-bad’ end of the scale to the ‘see-you-in-the-next-lifetime’ scale. I don’t feel safe. I don’t feel like I want to be here. I don’t feel like any of the craziness in my head is ever going to go away permanently… I truly believe that this is it for me now… A future of dipping in and out of craziness, a life time of anti-psychotic medication, a head that goes so fast I can’t keep up or so slow I feel like I have been set to operate in slow motion. Things are spiralling… I’m just not sure in which direction.

 

13:42 – Off to a&e shortly

18 Sep

I’m off to a&e shortly to get my stitches taken out. I don’t know if they will definitely take them out as the little bit of the wound that I looked at still didn’t look as though it was very healed, so maybe they will say to leave them in for another few days.

I was bad last night and cut again. Very shallow though. The stupid thing is that I did it on the same leg where my stitches are but higher up and round a bit so now I’m hoping and praying that the a&e doctor or nurse doesn’t see it, or maybe it will be a different nurse on anyway so they won’t realise it’s a new cut. Actually it isn’t even a cut. I wrote I have the devil inside me with a blade.

Did it give me the release I needed? For a little while yes and I managed to get some sleep after it. I think it was around 2am that I did it. The night time is so bad for the crazies. I still have a couple of Nitrazepam left but am hanging onto them until I really really need them because GP said she would only give me them very short term as I’m already on Diazepam and that’s the second time she has given me them and I’m not sure that there will be a third. So yeah, I am hanging onto my last two tablets until or in case I hit utter desperation with my sleep. I’m going to ask either Mr Psychiatrist tomorrow or GP on Friday if I can take something like Melatonin in combination with my meds because my sleeping is ridiculous at the moment. It is so broken and I don’t know how much longer I can survive on 2-4 hours a night – and those 2-4 hours are all broken up. I did get six hours I think it was on Saturday night but I really need a good eight hours every night of unbroken sleep to help keep my mood stable.

I’ve had the guys in all day doing the shower again, they actually appeared at 8am on the dot this morning. But they have been coming and going all day and I said would it still all be finished tomorrow and the guy said he doubts it, it will probably be Thursday until it’s completely finished.

I also made contact with Advocacy this morning. CPN had suggested I get in touch with them to help add more weight to my housing transfer application and as she is leaving soon I thought I’d give them a phone today and see if it’s something they can help me with. The woman was very helpful and it turned out she works within the same team as the advocacy woman I worked with whilst I was sectioned to help get me out of the psych hospital. So she said that she could get me set up with a volunteer, go through the letters that have already been sent to the housing association, and then see what they could write that hasn’t already been said or that needs saying again. So the plan is that when I see CPN tomorrow afternoon I’ve to ask her if she wants to come to the initial meeting and bring the letters that she has sent or whether she just wants me to get a copy of them and go myself, then I’ve to phone the woman back tomorrow after I get home and let her know what date suits best.

I was supposed to go to the sexual health clinic this morning to pick up my results from the tests I had following the assault but I completely forgot. I didn’t have an appointment anyway it was just the drop in bit I was going to go to, unfortunately they are only open on a Tuesday morning so I will need to wait til next week now.

I’m kind of debating in my head whether or not to go to a&e today. I just can’t be bothered with them asking questions if it’s the doctor who is usually on during the week (the one that put the stitches in) he will start asking me a load of questions about why I cut again even though it’s barely more than a scratch. But also the urges to do it badly are so strong and I don’t want to admit that if I’m asked. At the same time I don’t want to have to go back tomorrow because I lose the plot tonight/during the night… I can’t when I have both Mr Psychiatrist and CPN tomorrow and now all my notes of attending a&e are being sent to CPN and then on Friday GP would see I had done it again and I don’t know how any of them would react to it if it was another bad one.

I keep getting flashbacks where I’m a little child and being abused, it’s making me want to self harm ‘down there’. I did that once before but not badly enough to need medical attention and anyway I would have been too embarrassed/ashamed to have shown it to anyone. But I keep getting these thoughts to do it in that area and do it badly enough that it will all be permanently scarred and disfigured and no guy will ever want to touch it or go near it again.

It’s now 2.10pm and my card for a&e says to go in at 2.30pm I really really don’t want to go. I need to take the dogs a walk anyway and I need to go and buy a pack of cigarettes so I need to go out the house… But I need to go to the hospital twice tomorrow for my two appointments and I could just go to get my stitches seen to then when I’m already up there.

Ah I will go and take the dogs out and see if I can face going along to the hospital once I’m outside. I’ll probably post back later…

Ok I just took some diazepam… it’s now 2.25pm so by the time I have walked the dogs and been to the shop I should hopefully not be feeling so anxious and can just go to a&e and get the stitches dealt with…

21:31 – And I finally lost the plot

12 Sep

Today has been a shit day. This post has talk of self harm just to let you know in advance.

I had a shit night’s sleep, I woke up in a horrible mood, I was crying within half an hour of being awake. Thoughts were just spiralling round and round in my head, I felt so many emotions, I felt so angry and so alone and so messed up. I tried to go back to sleep, it was only 7am but I couldn’t. I tried to distract myself watching TV but I was just blank. So I sat and wrote a letter, to no one in particular, about how I felt regarding my care team at the moment. Basically a lot of what I wrote in my last post – that I felt completely unsupported by them right now. Come 9am I knew that today was going to be the day I lost the plot and did something stupid. By 10.30am I had got a stanley knife blade (yes I went blade shopping again yesterday after getting rid of them all just a couple of weeks ago) and that stanley knife blade resulted in an angry slash right down over my calf muscle. I then put a bandage around it and tried to go back to sleep.

But the sleep didn’t happen. There was blood everywhere despite a tight bandage being on. So I got dressed and walked the dogs. Then around 11.45 I took myself to a&e and sat there depressed, saying very little, just showed them my leg without even looking at it myself and heard her saying it would definitely need stitches. She asked me to go back to the waiting room because the room where the stitches were was being used but by this point it was like 12.35 and I had my CPN at 1pm. So I phone my CPN and tell her I am in a&e waiting for stitches and might be a little bit late. She tells me I have until 1.20pm to get there or she won’t be able to see me until next week. How that is the case when our appointments last an hour I don’t know but anyway I went back to the a&e nurse and told her and she said she didn’t think I’d be stitched up by 1.20pm so she took me back into the room and put a dressing and another tight bandage around my leg and told me to go to my appointment – the mental health team building is in the same grounds as the hospital – and to come back straight after it to get stitched up.

So I went to the appointment with CPN and I read her the letter I had written earlier in the morning. I straight out told her that I thought she had dealt with the situation on Friday really badly, that she hadn’t followed my crisis plan and had just passed the buck to my GP. She said to me if I didn’t feel like she was supporting me properly then she would ask the manager to assign me to work with someone else. I told her I didn’t want that to happen, what I wanted was for her to admit that she didn’t follow my crisis plan correctly. She neither admitted nor denied it, she said she was sorry I felt that way and I carried on with my letter.

The next part of the letter spoke about the amount of time I spent working with the last CPN on composing the crisis plan and how I feel as though I’ve always stuck to my part – i.e. if I have put myself in any medical danger I don’t call the mental health team I take responsibility for what I have done and I go to a&e if the injury/overdose is serious enough. Yet their part of the crisis plan was to recognise that when I was in a crisis situation they would see me and make a plan to keep me safe for the next 24 hours for example. Has that happened when I’ve been expressing all these self harm and suicidal thoughts lately? No.

I then moved on to what the point of the CPA meetings were when the agreements made at them weren’t being kept by certain people. I told CPN I was angry that social worker had agreed to monthly contact and never followed through with it and was in fact, uncontactable in all ways. CPN agreed with me that was not good and she also said it was not good that a&e had been asked to tell them any time I attended there and they didn’t do that after the recent sexual assault, it was me who had to tell CPN then CPN apparently went up to a&e to ask what had gone on although I didn’t know that until today. So she wrote a letter to a&e telling them again that they must inform the mental health team of any of my visits.

CPN said to me she could see why I was feeling unsupported by them at the moment – well by my CPN and social worker. The woman from rape crisis and a&e and lovely GP have always been helpful and supportive. She said herself if it was her that was me she would probably be feeling quite rejected so she obviously realised that she didn’t follow the crisis plan correctly on Friday. She raised the issue about my social worker again and I said that I personally felt as though because 5 months has now passed where she hasn’t stuck to the monthly contact agreement that she no longer had an excuse and was just avoiding me because she wouldn’t know what to say to me any more if I asked her what was going on. CPN said this was very bad practice and asked me why I still wanted social worker in my care team if I felt this way. I had written down a list of reasons why I had wanted to keep social worker in my care team, like CPN asked me to on the phone yesterday and I gave her the list. She agreed with all my reasons and said they were all valid ones, but she still wondered why I wanted to keep someone in my care team when I felt so let down by them. She suggested it was out of some sort of loyalty and maybe she is right. When I was first going properly bonkers about 3 years ago my social worker was my rock. She was amazing. If I look back on posts way back when I first started writing this blog I talked so much about how lucky I was to have her in my care team and how much incredible support she gave me. And the thing is that despite the past 5 months, I still remember ‘back then’ I still remember her as the lovely social worker, the one who gave a damn about me. And no matter how frustrated and even angry I have felt/am feeling towards her at the moment I will never ever forget how much she made me feel like she cared. And that is something that is hard to let go of, I will still sing her praises even when I’m moaning about her and saying I think she is avoiding and ignoring me and that she no longer cares about me. What can I say? She spent a hell of a lot longer being a good person in my life than what she has spent as a not so good one and for some reason I hang onto that.

CPN then started to tell me that as she is leaving at the end of this month and going to be handing me over to the new permanent CPN that is starting, that there is going to be about a 4 week period where she will be busy with the new CPN and may not be able to see me much over that time while new CPN settles in. So her suggestion was that I work with social worker on a weekly basis for 4 weeks until I start working with new CPN properly and that this would also give the chance for me to feel supported by social worker again, for the bad feelings towards her to go away and then maybe at the end of the 4 weeks I would feel ready to say to social worker to go ahead and discharge me. I said I would like for that to happen but I knew it wouldn’t. I just know social worker will not see me again. CPN said that if she asks social worker to see me over those 4 weeks and thinks for any reason that social worker won’t stick to it then she will arrange for someone else to see me. She promised me she wouldn’t leave me with no contact person or appointments for a month.

Then… the most ‘pathetic?’ thing happens (I don’t want to call it that but that is genuinely how it looked and felt). CPN says she will walk me back to a&e to get my leg stitched up but needed to go to the toilet and put my notes away so she said to go and have a cigarette out the front and she’d be 5 minutes. So I’m standing outside having a smoke and I hear a car and naturally glance round. It is social worker. Now social worker ALWAYS parks right next to the mental health team building, then there is a kinda car park thing as well which only had maybe 4 cars in it. But social worker sees me standing there, we glance at each other for maybe a second, and she carries on driving right the way up to the furthest point she could get to where there are only two tiny little spaces. I turned my back and finished my cigarette. I glanced back round, she was still in her car away up the top. I almost laughed because I could be completely wrong but my head said to me – she has seen you and hopes you haven’t seen her and is actually hiding up there so you don’t speak to her – CPN then appears out the building and I say to her, “guess what social worker has just arrived back” so CPN says lets go and speak to her and see if we can sort this situation out. I say to CPN that she is in for a walk and point to where social worker has parked her car (and was STILL in her car). CPN looked genuinely puzzled and said she now didn’t know whether to agree with me that social worker was actually avoiding me, she said “I don’t understand why she has parked away up there, she always parks down here and there are plenty of spaces”. She said she would try and find an opportunity to speak to social worker and ask her if there was a reason why she wasn’t seeing me, and see if she could get some sort of answers for me. She also said she would give her the list that I wrote about why I wanted to keep her in my care team. And then came the magic moment, CPN says “why do you want to keep someone in your care team when they are ignoring you?” she ADMITTED it! She agreed with me! I’m not going bonkers, social worker really is avoiding me! And I have no idea why…

Gosh this post is getting long.

So we go back to a&e, CPN says she will see me next week and try and talk to social worker in the meantime, I sit in a&e for a while then the doctor came and got me – the same one who had seen me the day after the sexual assault. There was a nurse in the room as well who I have seen a couple of times after self harming and she is really nice. The doctor is nice as well, but was concerned about me. But then he asked to see the wound and there was a moment that was actually kind of amusing and made us all smile for a moment, he realised it was my calf muscle I had cut into and (sorry this is gross) but when I bent my leg you could see all the fat layers pushing right out of the cut, and the doctor’s face kinda went white just for a brief second and he said “I know I’m a doctor but there is something about calf muscles that has always made me feel a bit sick when I see them” and the nurse asked the poor guy if he wanted her to take over. We all giggled just for a second. But it took the horrible-ness of the situation away and relaxed things. The doctor took a breath and said no he would be brave and face his calf muscle fear lol. Between the two of them they got 4 sutures in, glue between all the sutures, steri-strips on top and then a dressing and bandage. I have to go back on Tuesday to have my stitches taken out.

He asked me why I did it and I told him my head has been really messed up since the assault, that I have had hard decisions to make regarding whether to make a formal police statement, that it has brought a lot of my childhood abuse memories back again and I was struggling with it all, but that I was getting good support from rape crisis. I told him we’d had a CPA meeting on Thursday last week and I’d told CPN and Mr Psychiatrist that I was having suicidal thoughts and had been self harming again, but I’d managed to keep the self harming quite shallow so it hadn’t needed medical attention. He said he knew this obviously wasn’t any kind of suicide attempt – after all who would cut their calf open to try and off themselves? But that he was concerned the suicidal thoughts were still there. I reassured him I didn’t want to walk down that path again and although the thoughts were present I had no plan to act on them. I told him I couldn’t put my family through that again and today I had cut out of anger and frustration and just feeling really utterly crappy and alone. He urged me to go back and see them if I thought I was going to act on the suicidal thoughts before I acted upon them and let them help me; but besides medicating me I don’t really know what they can do. I told him I’d been very low on Friday and had seen lovely GP and been given Nitrazepam to get me through the weekend but that I knew I couldn’t rely on medications to get me through all these emotions. Somehow I have to face them all and go through the hurt and the unpleasantness and not medicate my way through it all. He was glad to hear I had started my uni course on Monday and was managing to use that as some sort of a distraction.

And so, other than seeing my best friend and the kids for a little while and having dinner with them, that has been my day. I knew this day was coming, it was creeping up slowly over the past few weeks and I finally lost it and cut real bad, but I feel like something is out of my system now, I feel calmer now I have done it, I do of course have some regrets like that I have scarred myself again but I guess it’s much better I cut than swallowed a shitload of medication and tried to do myself in. I feel some sort of a relief from it, I hope now I have done it that I won’t feel the need to do it again. I will admit I do have a pack of blades back in the house and the doctor asked me if I would at least consider throwing them and all medications that I didn’t need in the bin. I told him I’d think about it.

I was supposed to be meeting with the woman from the charity I want to start doing voluntary work with tomorrow but my head isn’t in the right place for it just now so I phoned her (and she sounds so lovely) and just made up an excuse that I had a lot of uni stuff on this week and didn’t want to not attend when I’d only just started the course and could we postpone. Unfortunately her next available date when she is in my area isn’t until the 1st of October but that should hopefully give me enough time to straighten things out in my head again and be in a much better place to appear as a good person to work with their charity and the young people they work with. I can’t support others if I can’t support myself so I truly hope over the next couple of weeks things might start to feel better. That the suicidal thoughts will pass or at least become manageable and that I won’t self harm again before then.

I have nothing planned for tomorrow other than to do my weekly food shopping if I can face the supermarket. And I hope my textbooks I bought on amazon will start arriving so I can busy myself with doing some reading. On Friday I am seeing lovely GP just for a catch up and will have to tell her about the self harming, she will have the notes about it from a&e anyway. I hope I won’t be in a mess again asking for medication to get me through yet another weekend. I want to face this weekend head on, I just don’t know if I have the strength yet.

Well now that I have been writing for over an hour and almost 3000 words I think it’s time to log off, put my pj’s on and watch some TV, try and stay distracted and hope for a better night’s sleep tonight. Tomorrow can’t be any worse than today and that’s the only positive thought I am hanging onto for now.

Protected: Compassion Focused Therapy Week One

16 Jun

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28 Apr

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13 Apr

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