DepressionDiaries: Out Of Balance

Lately I’ve been experiencing only two moods manic af or too depressed to function.

Today/yesterday I spent most of the day feeling awful especially when I had to go to the doctors for a referral to private therapy.

I was so down and low on energy all I wanted to do was sleep and I didn’t know how to answer the doc’s question coherently (I probably sounded a bit rude, my bad)

I had a nap when I returned home and when I woke up my mood had changed to manic/hysteria I felt like smiling and laughing for no reason but they were hollow and not sincere cheeriness.

I still felt tired but my brain was too wired to sleep so I spent the night/early morning eating whatever I could find while pacing around the room. I feel a bit sick now.

I’m not sure if I would say that this is the worst I’ve ever been I mean as I’ve grown I guess my depression and disorder affects me differently as my personality changes. I’m not so fearful about this breakdown as I was last year I guess now I’m just confused and fed up with everything.

NI2M ❀

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DepressionDiaries: Feeling the Pressure

Him: Hey you free to meet up I need someone to meet feeling lonely right now and just wondering upset atm

Me: Where and when?

Him: Today if possible please. Feel like crying 😒

Me: Okay well I’m already meeting up with a friend. Is it all right if he comes to?

Him: No sorry just might jump off a building sorry

This is a conversation between me and the guy I went on a date with a few weeks ago. Bare in mind we’ve hardly spoken and we don’t really know eachother well.

I actually lied about already meeting up with a friend. I was on facetime with two of them when I was getting these messages and honestly I felt uncomfortable meeting up with him alone so I begged one of them to come with me but then you saw that last message. When he sent that I felt threatened like if I didn’t meet up with him… alone and at night he would hurt himself. I told my friends what he said and immediately alarm bells went off for them as well. So I ended up saying that I couldn’t meet him and my mum never wants me to see him again and I don’t mind that honestly.

He has since apologised for his behaviour but I still don’t trust him, I can feel the colour drain from my face as the dread rushes over me whenever I get a message from him. He wants to see me but I don’t want to see him and I don’t know how to tell him that…

NI2M ❀

DepressionDiaries: Group Therapy Part 1 – Waves and Radical Acceptance

Today was my first session of group therapy. Now obviously I can’t say too much about what was said and done but I believe I can give an outline of the session and what I learned from it.

I arrived late because I overslept (great start) but I hadn’t missed much. It was mainly an introduction session. Getting to know one another, what the group was about and stuff like that. 

The thing I wanted to talk about is Radical acceptance. For some reason to me the “radical”word put me on edge but what Radical acceptance means is acknowledging the situation that has caused distress, not judging or criticizing it.

This is because trying to fight or control distressing feelings actually makes things worse for yourself so learning to accept your emotions or past experiences as what they are and riding with them like waves.

The way I see it is building a sandcastle with a wall and everything to protect it from the sea but no matter how thick the sand wall is the intense waves will still damage your sandcastle. So putting up barriers or trying to push the sea (your thoughts/emotions) away is pointless because it will still affect you. 

So accepting and working with the emotions actually makes them (and the sea) calmer causing less damage. Hope that makes sense.

After the session I was already tested on what I’d learned today. My autistic sister started yelling and throwing her toys. An occurence that happens less often these days as both her and I are older but when it does happen it is paricularly stressful. I felt like crying or even hitting her then I wanted to hurt myself for wanting to hurt her it was so bad.

I did stop and think though… I’ve done things like this before when having a meltdown or panic attack. She’s not acting up to purposely ruin things she’s stressed out because she doesn’t understand, if I were to snap or yell back at her it would only distress her more like with me when I have a public meltdown. Didn’t stop my own feelings of distress though; after a while my mum took her out of the restaurant to the shops and while they were away I tried to distract myself by looking through my notes from the session and beginning my draft of this post.

When they came back a while later my sister had calmed down and we could finally order and eat our food, after eating I did feel much better. For some reason my bad moods get worse if I’m hungry.

So if I had responded to my sister’s distress with my own it would have made things worse and would have taken myself and my sister longer to calm down, distressing our mum more in the process (she started crying a bit while my sister shouted her disdain)

So what I learned today is to not judge others or myself harshly on how they deal with difficult situations and emotions because it’s natural and denying it, supressing how you feel can make things much worse in the long run.

NI2M ❀
 

DepressionDiaries: Reckless Behaviour

 

I’m conflicted about this; a part of myself is proud  for getting away with it another part is worried about what I’m becoming. I stole a pen from a shop, it was quite easy as someone had already done half the job for me (removing the pen from its packaging) which meant I could get out without setting off alarms because the pen had no bar code.

Earlier I had been having a terrible day to the point that I had a breakdown. My mum went into the shop and left me waiting in the car with anger and depression boiling up inside me. I started having fantasies about doing reckless things and how thrilling it would be to break the rules. After a while I gave in to temptation and walked into the shop with my goal to steal something in mind. Conflict inside my head; The angry rebellious teen egging me on and the fearful child worrying reminding me of the possible consequences.

I hovered round the toy/stationary section and I saw a journal, the bar code was only attached by a sleeve that I could easily remove. perhaps too easy I thought to myself I think this massive journal is a bit too ambitious so I put the journal back, it was then that I spotted the neglected brand new pen that had been removed from its packaging and it seemed that someone else already took the other two that was supposed to be in a pack with it.

I picked up the pen, hid it up my coat sleeve and headed for the exit; I’d never felt so scared or excited in my life as I past the security guards and the sensors and made it outside and got back in the car to continue waiting for my mum. Honestly I got a kick out of it and I felt alive straying away from my usual good citizen path but it wasn’t long before the guilt kicked in.

The police are probably going to come to your house

 It’s just a pen  

It starts with a pen the next thing you know it will be a TV  

Other people would rob my charity store at least I’m not as low as they are

 But you’re just as bad as them return the pen 

It’s not fair I should be able to get away with it, everyone else does

Not everyone give them the pen back and apologise

No I’m not doing all that for nothing

It wasn’t even that hard give the damn pen back

No I want to keep it as a trophy

You may see it as a trophy now but when your mood changes it will serve as reminder of your sins and you’ll be riddled with guilt every time you look at it and even if you get rid of it, you’ll have nightmares about that pen.

… That’s a bit of a stretch

It’s the truth besides your mum would be disappointed 

Um… What she don’t know won’t hurt her

She’ll find out, you know she will either through the police or through you because you’ll be overcome by guilt and imagine how that would make her feel. Did she raise a delinquent?

…. No

Then return the pen.

Ugh… Fine!

It was then I grabbed the pen and walked back into the shop I didn’t return it directly as I was afraid they would report me and I would be arrested in front of my mum and bring her shame. So I put it back where I found it and then I remembered something I’d seen on TV where a character made the others believe she lost the key when she had it in her pocket the whole time but when she was ready to go she simply dropped the keys when no one was looking and pretended she’d just found them and picked them up to show everyone.

That’s what I did with the pen, I pretended to be browsing and put the pen back where I found it but then picked it back up with it’s empty packaging and gave it to one of the shop assistants who had been walking by, pretending I’d only just found it, she said “thank you” and I felt a sense of relief wash over me. I’d done it, I got away with it but then I did the right thing and returned it. It took all of my willpower not to bolt out the exit though.

I think my problems are getting worse I read that stuff like this is to do with BPD. I’ve asked for therapy weeks possibly even months ago but nothing and clearly medication is not the be all and end all to my issues. I should probably take my dad’s offer to pay and go private…

 

UPDATE: I wrote this a few days ago on the day that I did it. I didn’t publish it because I feared what people would think of me but I decided that I would give the whole grizzly picture of my mental state as that’s kind of the point of this blog. I’m not bad but I am ill and the illness is getting worse. I’ve got an appointment to see a psychiatrist  in a couple of weeks. I’ll tell her about what’s been happening and see what she says.

NI2M ❀

 

DepressionDiaries: Home Sickness

Home sickness… this has been a problem for me for as long as I can remember. Specifically if I was separated from my mum; I remember sleeping over at my dad’s house when I was 10 years old because we were going to go to the hospital to meet my new baby half brother together but I was so anxious about being away from my mum that my dad had to take me back to her at midnight.

Actually every holiday I went on with my dad I would have to battle my intense anxiety about being away from home, it wasn’t until a couple of years ago that I got used to being away from home with my dad but that took years of annual holidays with him to achieve. I remember when I was 16 I went away for this thing called NCS (National Citizen Service) and I had to spend 2 weeks away from home, I didn’t make it through the second week.

homesick

A year later  I went on a three day summer school experience where I had to spend two nights at a university to get a taste of what uni life was like. I did make it through those two nights but on the first night my anxiety was awful, I was crying and everything, luckily I’d made a friend who let me stay in her room to talk for a while. The second night I was so exhausted (we went clubbing but with adult supervision and no alcohol, I did a lot of dancing though) that I didn’t have the energy to be anxious besides I was going home the next day.

khfvzus

More recently I was in hospital, both times, I’d cried and panicked and practically begged to go home. I did get through both weeks though (probably the medication they gave me to knock me out helped)

6-8__

 

 

 

Sleepovers with friends were difficult to, I could stay the whole night but I would get very little or even no sleep at all  whereas my friends would be able to sleep soundly and I didn’t want to offend them by making them feel like bad hosts or have them think I was a baby for wanting my mum so I would just… wait in the dark silence for the sun to rise and everyone to wake up instead of telling them I wanted to go home.

 

 

I would wonder why I am this way, I’m 18 (nearly 19) I should be glad to be away from home but that’s how “normal” people my age function. Not me, I have depression and BPD with anxiety  so I can’t be like them. Speaking of my BPD, I have a theory that it is linked to the home sickness I get so badly. You see, BPD occurs when your relationship with your primary attachment is disrupted at an early age (in my case, that would be my dad leaving the family home for his girlfriend when I was 6) but according to psychological studies you develop more than one attachment in case of such disruption; you can have another primary attachment figure (in my case that would be my mum) you can also have secondary attachments (e.g. grandparents, aunts & uncles, guardians/carers)

Since my mum is my other primary attachment figure it makes sense that I would fear losing her (which is the core reasoning of BPD, the fear of losing someone you’re attached to the same way you lost your first primary attachment) when I’m away from my mum I fear that something will befall her or, for whatever reason, I would not be able to return home to her, therefore losing the only other primary attachment figure I have and my dad doesn’t ease that fear because I am not as attached to him as I was before I was 6. He’s been demoted to a secondary attachment figure. So to summarise, My home sickness is my BPD being triggered as a result of being separated from my primary attachment figure.

My dad will be taking me on a weekend away for my 19th birthday soon (we’re going ghost hunting XD ) fingers crossed my separation anxiety doesn’t get the best of me otherwise I’m going to end up like this…

Having-Move-Back-Your-Parents-House

NI2M ❀

DepressionDiaries: One Year Blogiversary

It’s March 2nd, its been exactly one year since I started Depression Diaries. Back in the days when my blog was just a baby and I had no idea what it would grow to be. I’d actually created my blog in January but we won’t talk about the posts I used to write because they don’t really reflect myself, back then I was trying to be like other bloggers, a blogger I thought I wanted to be.

Depression Diaries started because I had been inspired by bloggers I’d come across who had been brave enough to share their inner most thoughts and feelings, giving insight into life with a mental illness. I was back on sick leave from college and on the verge of giving it up as well as life in general. Depression was pretty much ruling my life and I just thought you know what? if this is a thing I might as well put it to good use. 

The series was created to help me vent and find some solace but also to help others find comfort or gain knowledge. I re- read some of my old posts and realised how far I’ve come in the past year. I am so much more confident online and offline; I feel I can talk about mental illness with confidence and not hide the true nature of it.

When I first started writing the series I was still stuck in that mind set that I had to be cheery and use humour to tone down and filter the raw truth for the sake of not wanting to inconvenience others with my troubles even though I was really suffering. I would use funny pictures and try to feign an optimistic view that was just false. Don’t get me wrong my blogs have always been honest but back in those days I had a filter in my writing that didn’t give the whole picture of me and my life with mental illness.

After a few months of networking with other mental health bloggers I’d grown in confidence enough to remove that filter, I think by then I’d lost practically everything anyway so I didn’t have anything to lose by being completely honest and I found that removing the rose tinted filter from my writing was the best thing I could have done because my blog grew which meant my support network grew as well, Many people have appreciated my honesty and I feel for once I can be truly proud of myself for being so brave and making a difference to people’s lives whether they are mentally ill or know someone who is.

I can still have fun with my posts nowadays but only if I feel I can instead of forcing it like I used to. I’ve surprised myself sometimes by my sense of humour and how I can wield it even in my darkest time.

It’s been a rollercoaster of a journey but I’m glad I’ve had you with me for the ride. This community we’ve got means so much to me, the support and kindness we give eachother and honesty that’s hard to come across offline has given me a place to belong and not feel judged which is something we all need especially if we have a mental illness or few because offline we can be so outcasted and stigmatized by people who know nothing of what it’s like to be mentally ill.

On that note, may our blogs live long and prosper.

NI2M 🎑

DepressionDiaries: Triggers, So Many Triggers

You could consider this post a continuation to yesterday’s one “intrusive thoughts

Today I went to see the doctor to talk about my anxiety. I figured out that must be the problem and what’s causing my intrusive thoughts because I remember the symptoms I experience with severe anxiety and intrusive thoughts are one of them.

While I was talking I managed to identify the things that might have set off my anxiety.

  1. For at least a month I was housebound because of my appendicitis so going out may have caused me anxiety considering I got comfortable at home.
  2. It’s March, a bad month for me ( I suggest you read The Curse Of March to get a better understanding of why this is such a difficult month for me) I think the fact that march was coming up got pushed to the back of my mind but sub- consciously the dread built up leading to my anxiety.
  3. About a week ago I had a rather deep conversation which re-surfaced some bad memories. Which could have set off the anxiety inducing intrusive thoughts.
  4. A close family friend has received some bad news and I’m worried about the effect it will have on her family and mine.
  5. The health of my Nan. She’s been very ill lately and the doctors are trying to prolong and maintain quality of life for her but she doesn’t think she’ll live to see my female cousin’s wedding later this year.

panic

So fair to say, thinking about it, I have every reason to feel so anxious and usually either my depression or my anxiety is dominant. Lately my depression has been ruling so my anxiety and intrusive thoughts weren’t such a big problem because I had too little energy to worry or care. Not saying my depression has gone but has been pushed aside by my anxiety. It will probably arise again when my anxiety has settled.

Anyway, for now my fluoxetine dose has been increased to 40mg to help manage my intense anxiety in this difficult period of time and my doctor is going to arrange for me to see a psychiatrist again. I’m still going to speak with my mentor tomorrow, hopefully she will be able to give me some support over the next few weeks.

ngjc2

 

NI2M ❀

DepressionDiaries: Intrusive Thoughts

Oh boy, How do I talk about this…

For years my brain has tormented me with inappropriate and harmful thoughts and it would lead to the point that I would hurt myself to stop them because of the intense anxiety and frustration I would experience. I won’t go into detail about the kind of thoughts I have because I am so ashamed… yes I admit it, I am ashamed, too much so to write about it in depth here.

Recently I had been so pre -occupied with the appendicitis, the operation and the hospital that I seemed to finally have a break from these thoughts but a couple of nights ago they returned. They would cause me to hate myself and want to hide away to keep everyone safe from me. I know these are just thoughts and that they don’t reflect me as a person but they still scare me.

Intrusive thoughts are said to be related to OCD (honestly I would not be surprised if I was diagnosed with that as well) but I don’t know if I have it. I know I used to worry about germs and illness and would shower sometimes twice a day and wash my hands vigorously and carry anti bacterial products with me.

Nowadays my depression is so bad that I don’t really care about my health and self care is like a chore but the thoughts are still around. On the other hand intrusive thoughts can also be related to anxiety and depression both of which I’ve experienced strongly over the years.

I think I need to seek professional advice for this as it is a destructive problem for me, I have managed to avoid self harming to shut my brain up but I don’t know how much longer that will last. I’m going back to the MIND centre this Thursday so I will see about talking to my mentor, see what she thinks.

friends-phoebe-stop-tormenting-me

 

NI2M ❀

 

 

 

 

 

DepressionDiaries: On The Mend

As you can probably tell by my productivity with blogging this week, I’ve been doing better recently, I’ve managed to get out of the house to see a doctor, who gave me the all clear to take my brain meds.

Since I’ve been back on my brain meds my moods are more manageable. My scars are healing up nicely and I’ve managed to clean myself up so I look and feel much better.

I still experience pain and discomfort where my appendix used to be but that’s to be expected as the average recovery from appendicitis surgery is 2-4 weeks so there’s still time before I may worry about needing to go back to the doctor’s.

Here’s what I’ve been up to this week:

Monday- I went to visit my grandparent’s (my aunt’s dog kept parking her bum on my stomach which caused all sorts of discomfort but I didn’t have the heart to push her off) I then finally had Mcdonald’s (sad, I know but I was really looking forward to it)

Wednesday- I went out of town to have lunch, shop and spend time in my favourite bookshop (I bought 3 new fiction books and 2 notebooks, I’ve been through a lot of crap lately so I treated myself, don’t judge me XD ). Stomach pain was pretty bad but I managed to stay out for approximately 6 hours before going home.

Friday- I went to my local MIND centre where I spoke to my mentor, met new people and did some arty stuff. I had some sharp stomach pain and I did panic a little but I managed to pull through it πŸ™‚

Saturday- I went with one of my cousins to see the hotel where she would be having her wedding reception later on this year; I felt out of place there because it was so fancy and I was dressed casually with greasy hair, I’m sure I’ll look better on the day because I’m going to be a bridesmaid!!! Β That evening I went to the pub with some friends, I was very anxious as it was my first time out with friends since the operation

Tuesday and Thursday I spent at home to allow myself time to rest

Sunday (today)- I went for a drive with my mum and we stopped at a cafe to have lunch. Simple but it meant I got out of the house.

Overall its been a good week, it had ups and downs as usual with me and my BPD but it was better than the weeks I’ve been having πŸ™‚

NI2M ❀

 

 

DepressionDiaries: MIND Matters

I was with this service called ACE for a while, they basically arrange activities for you to do during your spare time if you have a mental health problem with no work. A lot of their activities I’m doing are with MIND, a charity organisation that work with mentally ill people, I did a fundraiser for them a couple of months back (I have the shirt to prove it, literally)

Today was my first proper session with MIND and we had a university student come in and ask for our help with an app he wanted to create to help people with mental illness. I was the youngest of the group and the others were at least 10 years older than me and more so they didn’t entirely get what apps are but I found myself speaking up a lot more than I thought I would considering I was new and the youngest. I was talking to the student about apps I’ve tried and gave him suggestions based on what I know of my generation and social media.

We also all got into a discussion about mental health services, hospitals, medications etc. The older people were interested in what I had to say and honestly from what they told me about the very little help they got a few years back, services have improved at least a little; It’s still a mess though, at least here in the UK it is. I remember before I went to hospital for my treatment I was very stuck, I was at too high risk for a service called Wellbeing that my GP counsellor referred me to because he wasn’t qualified enough to deal with my trauma and BPD but I was at too low risk to get help from the crisis team.

The Crisis Team… Where do I start with them? as soon as I mentioned them there were groans from my fellow service users, everyone in the UK with a severe mental health problem has likely had to deal with the crisis team, I have multiple times. I’ve had visits from really nice team members but it doesn’t stop the system from being absolute garbage; they treat mental illness like a joke and don’t really take the people they are supposed to be helping seriously. I remember the first time I dealt with them and I had an assessment by an arrogant prick who thought he knew everything and clearly hadn’t listened to me; I told him that my sister has severe autism to the point where she can’t hold a conversation with you and I was telling him that I found that hard to deal with as at the time we were fighting a lot physically (because she can’t communicate properly verbally) and yet what advice does he give me? “Go home and talk to your sister” I could have flipped the coffee table that was separating us and punched him in his smug stupid face.

That wasn’t all, another one I remember was that I was so low that I was disassociating and giving up on life, I didn’t know where I was going or what the point of going on at all was and the crisis team assessor (different one this time, that’s also a thing, you get a different person with different opinions, approaches and personalities practically every time you’re visited) what she said to me was “What do you want me to do?”honestly it sounded like she was just as helpless as I was which was not what I needed. Like I said there were some good ones but they didn’t stick around long; saw them once, maybe twice out of all the times I had the crisis team visit me. Overall the whole group could agree that the crisis team is shit; I’d rather go back to the hospital than deal with them.

Anyway, rant over, the student will be coming back next week to get our stories and ideas, I look forward to it πŸ™‚ As someone so young (18) in the generation where technology is basically your life and apps are downloaded as much as a stamp collector collects stamps combined with my passion for mental health, I’m more than happy to help with his project.

NI2M ❀