Month: February 2016

Fat, and hot, and horrible.

The hardest thing about the quetiapine (and venlafaxine maybe, though I attribute it more to the quetiapine) and clonazepam is what it’s done to my body, or rather what I’ve let happen.

Fat. Disgusting. Sweating and hot (that’s the pain meds too I guess). Conscious of my expanded body. I have gained so much weight in the last couple of years. And I’ve let it happen. It’s true the drugs make you gain weight and increase your appetite, but I’ve failed. I haven’t stopped it.

I’m repulsed when I pass a mirror and see the foul reflection, bigger and bigger; when I feel the flab around my stomach and waist, the one thing I used to be able to keep flat and small even if I did have chunky thighs I hid under skirts. It’s everywhere. Crawling disgusting flesh and fat.

Why did I let it? Why? Why did I return to this demanding sick big disgusting body? I want to rip and claw and cut. It’s out of control. It’s all wrong. Growing and needing and hungry and hurting inside and out, aching within, stabbing in my stomach, darts and shooting burning pains as my feet touch the ground and my joints feel like they’ve been smashed and bruised.

Failure. Why. Hate. Hate hate hate this growing sick too big too present body. Even in my dreams I’m fat fat fat, running and clawing to get out of my body. My mother is there, shouting and mocking and threatening and I wake up drenched in sweat and shaking because the nightmare is real now. I couldn’t save her and the foul thing I am stares back at me out of every mirror.

And I cry.

I’m sorry for being rubbish this week

I’m sorry for being rubbish this week

I’m sorry for being rubbish this week. I’m sorry for being so slow to reply to comments and not being there enough for you (lovely readers / bloggers) as well as other people important to me in my life. I have been so shattered and sinking and though that’s true and consuming, I hate yet again using that as an excuse. Someone I was close to told me a little while ago that at first maybe you can hope people will understand but not after it’s gone on for years. Certainly “it” has gone on for years for me. Whilst it hurt when she said that I can also sort of see that you cannot expect endless understanding and it feels like asking more and more the longer I am not there and not well.

It is only very special and very empathic people who continue to understand and to be there. I am very very thankful for you. I care about you and I am so sorry for the times I fail to show it when I cannot write or say or otherwise show the love and support I wish I could. You mean so much to me. Thank you.

***

Also, in the past few days I have been trying to put together something in writing, a kind of open letter, about how I feel about my current care and how I have been treated by different services in my struggle to get help. I’m going to finish this tonight in preparation for, hopefully, meetings with a nurse practitioner and the Psychiatrist at the hospital this week. I think I may share some of it on here because I don’t think I’m the only person fighting the failings that have pushed me nearer the edge.

Ginny xx

Silly post, but just to hold myself to it!

This is a pretty silly post but I’m writing it here in order to hold myself to it, because if I write it here I’ve made the commitment to all of you (lovely readers) as well as myself.

I went to group this morning. I’m so boiling with feelings and hurt and loss and anger (not with group or anyone in it but with the whole PD Service). I desperately need to shut off and the best ways I know without help are things that hurt me. And it’s very possible I could just go home and do that and dissociate or literally knock myself out. I am going to try to make myself take another action instead.

I commit that this afternoon I will write a card to send something to my step-sister that she needs. Then I will clean in every room in my flat. It is in a complete state as i have not cleaned or cared for it in the state I’ve been in in the last two weeks. I may not finish all of it but I will vacuum everywhere and I will clean at least three things in every room (it’s a small flat!).

And to keep going in the promises I made in my commitment to getting better, 5 things I’m thankful for today are:

  • I have a flat of my own to live in (well I say my own; it’s rented but it’s home and I’m blessed to have my place and my safe space).
  • I went to therapy today and talked about horrible feelings and the other members of the group listened and didn’t treat me like a freak. They actually seemed to understand.
  • I saw an old friend yesterday who I have not met in years. She seemed happy and well and she’s having a baby very soon.
  • My step-sister and I are getting in contact with each other more.
  • Um… I didn’t have to wait ages for the bus back to town after therapy, does that count ūüôā ?!

I’m wishing for something good to happen to you today.

Ginny xxx

Group and no more trust

Tomorrow is MBT (mentalisation based therapy) group. I don’t know whether to go.

All trust I had in the service has gone. It’s been completely wiped out by the lies and let downs of the past months, the proofs they don’t believe me, the tricks, the cuts that open me more and more vulnerable then leave me with nothing and noone.

I don’t really want anything to do with a service that does this, but I’m desperate and have nowhere else to go. I’m desperate for help but it’s denied, it’s promised then withdrawn, or I’m deemed not in need or not believed. I want to do the therapy but I can no longer go forward safely with it. I cannot cope between sessions except by overdosing to black everything out and self harming to punish myself, temporarily quiet the voices, temporarily be something other than the utter pain. I’m not allowed any of the things that would keep me safe between sessions.

If I go tomorrow, I will be so angry. I can’t say I’ll keep it under control in the session. I can’t say I’ll stay “stable”. Nothing keeps it in anymore. I can’t mentalise like this and really I don’t want to. These things just are as they are. There’s nothing to be “curious” about or explore my feelings or someone else’s thoughts. Their thoughts have been made totally clear – they don’t believe me, I’m not allowed help, they’re tricking me, they’re cutting me open then leaving me and finding more and more ways to do it. My feelings are exploding and total. Fury. Hurt. Trapped. Over the edge. Liar. Fake. Fraud. Pain. Screaming.

If I go to group I can’t avoid it being clear I have no hope and no trust left. If everyone or anyone else does trust the service and does believe they’ll help them, then maybe that gets them through and helps them and is a lifeline for them. I don’t want to destroy that.If I say what’s happened to me, even in the last couple of days, I could destroy it.

I could go and just try not to talk about anything to do with me and just be there for other people and listen to them and try to mentalise about what other people bring. But I’m so far gone over the edge I don’t think I can trust myself not to explode.

When the group started committed to do it all. I committed to not leaving. I committed it to everyone in the group – not out loud, we didn’t do that, but in my head I did. I promised to God and Mother Mary too. If i leave I break my commitment to everyone, not just the service. I really don’t want to do that.

Yet at the moment I’m just ending up in more and more danger. It seems as if I should just accept this’ll never end, dissociate as much as possible, hope for something sometimes bearable…. but I think I’m too far gone for that. I wish I’d never trusted them.

Time to pack it in and leave, I think

So the last couple of hours have brought me absolutely beyond all hope.

I’ve been led on a cruel dance by all the so called emergency out of hours lines.

The PD service secretary refused to even phone any of the clinicians. She told me all kind of rubbish and lies, like that she couldn’t put me through to anyone else in the hospital, she didn’t have a telephone number for any of the clinicians or anyone else in the service, she refused to get me help, she pretended the crisis team didn’t exist, she shouted over me. I called 111 the out of hours service, since it was after 5. They refused to get me an appointment face to face or telephone. They said my own gp still needed to see me. They were not responsible til 6.30. They refused to make me an appointment after 6.30 or refer me to the crisis team. My own gp put me through to the duty doctor. She refused to visit me because it was too late in the day. She refused to refer me to the crisis team because they wouldn’t accept a referral without her seeing me which she’d refused to do. She then hung up on me whilst I was speaking. ¬†The so called emergency out of hours mental health line went to answerphone 3 times. I finally got through. They had none of my messages. They talked over me constantly and said nobody world come to see me and just go to a&e. I’m too ill to go out of the house and what’s the point of going to a&e? They just send you back out a few hours later. What was the point of the line then if they don’t offer help? If I wanted to go to a&e I’d have gone. The woman actually agreed yes it’s fairly pointless, she just tells people to go to a&e.

I am desperate. I have done everything I’m told to. I have jumped through every &*$/‚ā¨(# hoop. I even trusted them. What do I have to do to get help? Every single thing gets taken away. How much sicker do I have to be before they’ll help me? Before they stop talking about building my resilience? They’ve taken every bit of my resilience away and finally pushed me over the edge.

I’ve been thinking for some time about just packing up and going away somewhere else. Going off to the other end of the country. Somewhere else I can¬†live hidden, preferably under a different name, nobody else knowing all this $#@/!&¬£* inside me, nobody pulling me apart and cutting and cutting¬†deeper, nobody tricking me, and it’ll be numb but it’ll be some pretence of normal, it’ll be numb and fake but I’ve seen what trusting gets you, nobody will come near to me again, the real and the screaming and the desperation and hurt, I’ve been shown what that deserves, I’ve had it. I think I should just choose the numb.

Punished for hope

Go on then. Smash me into the ground and kick me as hard as you can.

That’s what they do to me.

I was promised “victim support” when I went to the police about the abuse. I was promised support from the victim support team’s specialist CPN and to finally get help with the trauma, flashbacks and PTSD. A phonecall with the CPN was booked in for today by the support team. The police officer who took my statement knew.

I got the call from the CPN who told me she is employed by the same mental health trust as the hospital I’m seen at for my personality disorder. Oh good, ¬†I thought, that should help, shouldn’t it? She’ll know my mental health background and have my records. Wrong! She said that she’d organise support for people who aren’t currently seen in the mental health trust and get them therapy to help them deal with the trauma of what they’d had done to them but because I’m seen in the personality disorder service I’m “already in the most appropriate pathway” and she can’t help me.

But the personality disorder service specifically don’t address trauma and PTSD. The therapy I have there doesn’t deal with flashbacks, memories, hallucinations etc. ¬†It deals with here and now. Which is great and important but leaves all the trauma untouched. I need help with that.

Why am I not allowed that because I have personality disorder, when a victim who does not have personality disorder, would be allowed to access it? Why am I denied help with one condition because I also have another diagnosis? You wouldn’t say to someone who had been in a car accident and fractured their leg as well as aggravating a pre existing back injury, “oh sorry we aren’t going to get a surgeon to set your leg to heal because you’re already being seen in the spine clinic.” So why is it deemed okay to deny me victim support because I have BPD?

The CPN said I should make a list of all my unmet needs and take it to my appointment with the psychiatrist next week. Oh my days have I not already begged for help with all the “unmet needs”! She just didn’t seem to grasp that the personality disorder service simply do not address the PTSD area. Which in itself is fair enough, it’s a specialist PD service – but it’s not okay if you’re denied access to other specialist services!

Why was I promised psychological help from this victim support team and this CPN if this is the outcome?! Everyone knew I am being seen in the PD service.

Then the CPN said oh they just don’t offer this help in the community teams. Yes and don’t you think I know, after fighting for 15 years plus. … and that’s why it’s speed to be coming from her!

This is yet another kick and yet another betrayal. Yet another thing I held on to snatched away. Yet another desperate hope gone. Yet another trick, this time effectively from the police, it feels like, though it isn’t the officer’s fault, he was nothing but supportive and this victim support team is separate…. but this is the last hope of people believing me and allowing me any help. And it’s now gone.

It’s absolutely proved everything my mother threatened. People would think the fault was hers, if they ever found out, and they’d take her away. Nobody would imagine a child could do all this. But really she’d know and I’d know that it was my fault all along, and what I’d done (and how evil I am, the voices add). I told. They found out. They think the fault is hers. But I must remember, the voices say, really it’s me all along, really I don’t deserve anything because I’m so evil. It’s confirmed it.¬†

It’s the hardest kick and tightest grip of the terror and memories again.

I was promised support when I went ahead to make the statement. Now I’m left and left more raw than before. I don’t regret doing it but can’t cope and I’m not okay and I’m not safe.

To top it all off I called the personality disorder service to be told there are no calls back today because the team have gone on an away day. Shame the voices and flashbacks haven’t gone on an away day. Shame the planning for how much hurt I can cause myself hasn’t.

 

“It’s all grand and it’s all green…”

“It’s all grand and it’s all green…”

I’m trying to give myself permission to eat better foods. When I’m filled with self loathing thoughts it’s very difficult for me to allow myself to eat proper prepared food and meals, partly because of thoughts that I’m too disgusting to deserve it and partly because I’m just so tired I have no energy left for cooking after getting through the day.

Yesterday I decided to get some nice fruits and greens and I got my juicer out, which I haven’t used for months. As you can see, the result was a somewhat alarming colour and might have fitted in well in Oz*. However, it actually tasted very nice.

It’s a small start.¬†

[*Title from “One Short Day in the Emerald City” from the musical “Wicked”.]

In person

I phoned the GP Surgery last week to try to get an appointment. I wasn’t feeling well at all after trying to cope with memories and flashbacks and really high anxiety. It’s unusual I ask for help like that but this time I did. The duty GP phoned me back. After we’d talked very briefly she said there weren’t any appointments left and it sounded as if I “had insight” and knew the coping strategies (which means distraction, grounding etc) so there wouldn’t be anything to gain in having a face to face appointment. She would not book me in. Actually there’d have been everything to gain in seeing someone and it would have helped me greatly.

This and many other incidents got me thinking how much it helps me to meet with someone in person or have someone with me. It’s very important to me. I’ve been very upset when a friend has canceled meetings. I find the telephone support offered by the clinic is not enough to keep me safe and I’ve longed for a safe place and someone with me when I’ve exhausted all possible coping techniques i can do alone.

In my last 1:1 therapy we talked about what does it mean to me to have a meeting with someone arranged, whether it’s friend or professional. I think it means a certain amount of hope, something I desperately try to keep going until, it means I have some worth if anyone would spend time with me, it means not being alone. .. It’s easier to find what it means when meetings are canceled or refused – I’m worthless, nobody wants to be with me, I’m clearly the last person anyone would choose, everything else in their life is of more worth, I can’t do any good to the other person, they have written me off, I don’t deserve help, they don’t believe me, I don’t deserve. … all along they just couldn’t wait to get rid of me, how stupid I was to ever think differently. It just confirms what I already knew.

Then there are also certain rules, I guess, which I hold myself to and which define rrelationships. Like that friendship means always being there for the other person no matter what. Or that it’s important to keep arrangements and commitments to friends and do what you promise and if you don’t you’re rejecting the other person and not treating them with respect or kindness.

This means I really struggle when meetings are cancelled. Also, having someone with me and someone I can rely on is a huge and fairly childish longing in me. The concrete presence of someone with me is often the only thing that calms me or prevents my self destructive behaviors. Equally though, it has to be someone I absolutely trust not to leave, which means very few people. And part of me is always waiting for them inevitably to leave, when I show too much what it’s really like inside me. It’s something that can almost never be fulfilled (and the people who make decisions about the support I’m allowed seem set to prevent that need being answered and in my most desperate times that can lead me to very paranoid thoughts). Needing it brings me massive feelings of guilt now I’ve admitted it.

Does anyone else feel this desperate need for the concrete presence of someone with you?

Ginny xx

The penguins look a bit funny round here this week (On calming colouring)

The penguins look a bit funny round here this week (On calming colouring)

I’ve posted before about enjoying colouring as therapy. I’ve now built up quite a collection of “colouring books for grown-ups”. Here are some crazy penguins I did today. This book has smaller pictures than I usually do but it is great to take with you if you’re on the move or for a quick distraction. I find it works better than reading to combat anxiety whilst, for example, waiting for hospital appointments. My good friend R. gave me that idea.

If I’m waiting for someone or something, my anxiety increases ridiculously. I’m never quite sure why. I’ve only just started to become aware of it. I feel the physical symptoms of the emotion before the mental ones – becoming hot and sweaty, or alternatively cold; shaking; finding my breathing tight and constrained; being restless. I’ve identified before that uncertainty over times and meetings with people is very stressful for me. Perhaps part of the reason why is that since childhood, if someone is running late I’ve always imagined something awful has happened to them, like a road accident. I think that stemmed from some of my mother’s threats when I was a young child, usually made when my father was at work and she was at home with me, that if my father ever found out what I was doing to her he would be so upset that he would have a car accident or a heart attack – then she’d phone him and tell him what I’d been doing to her (though it later turned out a lot of the time she was only pretending to phone him) ¬†– so if he was ever late I’d become frightened the threatened accident had occurred. But I think a good part of it is just my inability to cope with uncertainty.

Anyhow, colouring calms the anxiety more effectively than reading, or counting backwards, or counting objects or colours and so on. Perhaps because you are physically engaged in doing something and have to make a certain amount of decisions about the colours to use and so on. And it has the added bonus that you can turn your picture into something pretty in the end – frame larger designs, or make cards out of them.

I often pass the evenings this way too, when I’m too tired to do much else.

Ginny xx

This week, I will…

I’m trying to turn things around. It feels as though things have been spiralling down and down since Christmas. Since I spoke to the police, I think things are starting to shift almost imperceptibly. It is true it hasn’t been easy and I cannot change the hurt, but I think there are a few positive things I can try to keep doing, which I have given up on in the last months because it was just too dark and painful.

Inspired by one of a2eternity’s posts (you can visit her¬†wonderfully frank and brave blog at https://a2eternity.wordpress.com/ ) I am making a list of some things that I am going to commit to trying to do this week:

  • Every day before bed, I will write down 5 things that I am thankful for in that day.
  • I will do something creative every day – a bit of my colouring books, make a card, take a photo, write a card to a friend, whatever it be.
  • I will do something positive for my body every day (like do my makeup, have a nice bath with some bath foam, put on some moisturiser) even when I am hearing voices telling me how ugly, foul and disgusting I am.
  • I will choose a passage from the Bible that encourages me with hope in God’s unconditional love for us. Whenever the voices tell me to hurt myself, whenever I hear them saying I’m evil and a fake, when the flashbacks come, I will repeat this line in place of what the voices say.
  • Something that I have meant to do for a long time: I will think about what I could put in my memory box and find a box to use (I’ll post again about what this is for, later in the week).

Here’s to thankfulness.

Ginny xxx