Category Archives: bpd

dependence.

So I haven’t written much on my blog lately. In all honesty, it’s because I’m having quite a difficult time right now. My emotions are everywhere, I can’t keep up with eating because I have no money for food half the time. I wound up in hospital after yet another overdose. There are things going on within my family that are really difficult, a lot of which involve my brother, and when he goes, who is there to help me? My brother is my safe place. In mindfulness and meditation more generally, thinking of a safe place to try to calm your mind is thinking of a safe location. For me, that’s alone, in a mac, with bare feet and legs, writing in my diary on a stoney beach, somewhere in England, during a storm. The rain and wind whipping up my hair and the sea, whipping against my skin. That’s just in my mind. In reality, it’s Joe. He ‘s there for me always and when he melts down, I melt down even more.

I’ve been actively suicidal for about a week, cutting holes in my body, drinking, taking drugs, etc.. I’ve been falling apart. It’s partly to do with my attitudes towards sex, which is entirely fucked. Being sexually abused for years makes you feel like you are nothing unless you are fucking someone, I sleep around and it means I exist. If I didn’t, I’m nothing. Logically, I know it’s isn’t true, but emotionally, I don’t. However, if I can make myself that image first, no one can do it for me. Another thing is that I’m poor. So poor I can’t keep up with my friends. And now I think I feel jealousy and fear towards them. I’m losing them. I can’t go to their birthdays and no one ever seems to enjoy my company. I feel like all my friends are gone and all think I’m a lazy waster with no ambition or hope. I’m jealous because they are better than me, and I’m scared because I’m losing them. I feel completely isolated. I’m also starting to get back into uni, and that in itself is hard. Working on my MA again is a lot for my brain to take in. It’s doable, but just hard. And my motivation is low because use every time I think about my life, I want to die. I’m not safe.

So obviously, because this makes all the sense, I decided I could have no friends and everyone had to go away because they all hate me and I need help and needed to shout really loudly so that everyone would come and help me. So I blocked all my friends on Facebook, and anyone that linked us, so they’d all think I’d run off dramatically. This, by the way, is a ridiculous idea. Telling everyone to fuck off doesn’t get you attention, it’s gets people fucking off. Just praying someone realises that what I’m doing means I need help is believing in blind faith alone. I don’t have blind faith in anything else in the world, just about how to ask for help. So shout and scream and text people to tell them I’m leaving and telling everyone they hurt me, or just plain blocking (which they don’t notice anyway). Rationally, this is ridiculous.

The thing is, I think I’m ok when I know what I need. I ask, and it’s fine. Now though, I don’t know what I need. I don’t know what will help. I know I can’t mind read, but that means that anyone could lie. Everyone could hide whatever they want from me. That’s why, however an obvious choice this may be, my super power would be mind reading. Not knowing is the hardest, and sometimes all people can do is listen to me tell them their wrong until I run out of steam. Then I need people to sit with me and watch silly television till I fall asleep, just so I’m safe. I don’t really know how to articulate my emotions and I’m kinda sure that no one can fix them but me. Sucks right?

So on Friday, I cried a lot, threatened to kill myself and wound up with friends who couldn’t fix it because how can they?

Which all kinda leads to my point – dependance and attachment in BPD. I think that a common part of BPD includes unhealthy attachments to people. You need them and their attention more than anyone else does, or at least on some subconscious level you do. You need them to belong to you in a sense. You don’t want to own them, but for them to be yours. For them to invite you to everything, for them to contact you the most, for them to be there when you need and never pick someone over you. It’s ridiculous and irrational, but I think it’s true. All I can say is what’s true for me, but I constantly feel like people are like mice or something. I’m always trying to keep them in my shoebox, but they are always trying to escape.

So you cry for help in any way you know how. Whether that’s sitting alone, self-harming, hoping that maybe someone will help, but then hiding it anyway so the whole affair was futile; screaming at people about how much you hate them and ruin their lives (again, futile); or hurling stuff around, breaking things and ripping things to shreds (notice the futility? It’s a pattern).

Forming healthy relationships is hard for me, and maybe it’s hard for other people with BPD. I don’t know. I can’t speak for everyone. What I can say that I’m not sure any of my relationships are healthy. I adore or despise people. I will listen to someone tell me they need space, then fall to the floor and literally beg, holding on to their legs. I’ve covered rooms in blood so that people will stay. I’ve also ignored people, glared at them, never explaining why. I will sit alone for weeks because I hate everyone. The middle ground doesn’t really exist for me and I think it exists for everyone else. The part where not everyone is your best friend or your worst enemy. I know that exists, just I don’t know how to access it. So I cry a lot and cut myself to shit and take overdoses which wind up with me in hospital. Maybe I should have paid more attention in interpersonal effectiveness skills groups.

Right now, people are hard and I need them and I need them to not judge me for getting fat and ugly or being a waste of space or living on benefits. I need them to understand me in a way that I don’t. I suck at understanding myself and I suck at listening to others opinions. I need a lot of opposing ideas to come together and make sense out of who and what I am. I need to be more than obsolete. I need to stop being a moody cunt, but let’s not lie, that’s never going to happen.

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Filed under bad day, Benefits, bpd, coping strategies, fuck, general, Hospital, life, Mental health, self harm, Welfare

hospital wards.

So I said I’d try to do blog posts from the past and from now. The last one was a now one, and this one is about inpatient. I’ve had a pretty bad little while so have put of posting this. It’s a kinda sad post, and I didn’t want to think about the sad. Re-reading it, it’s ridiculous how emotionally detached I become when trying to explain how I’ve felt. Everything is a load of facts and logic. I was told by a social worker that it’s actually a problem for me. Emotionally connecting to events. I emotionally feel things and think other things. The emotions and the facts don’t connect. I duno if that’s true, but this is from early December 2013. It’s probably not that enjoyable, but it’s there to read if you want.

So I tried to kill myself. A shit load of diazepam and a shit load of alcohol. I wound up in A&E, in and out of consciousness. When I was medically stable, I talked to the psych staff in the majors ward and was asked to go to an inpatient mental health ward.

After 13 hours in A&E and several instances of self harm (some requiring stitches), I was put in an ambulance and moved to a mental hospital. There was another girl there with her Mum, but I didn’t want anyone to come with me. I wanted to be alone. She looked scared though, so I’m glad she had someone. I was scared too.

I’d already hidden razor blades in places where no one found them. And lighters. When they searched me, they found nothing. I gave them one one blade to look genuine, but kept the other eight. I’m not going to go into hiding places because it might give ideas, but I had them on me, as well as a stocks of first aid stuff from A&E, so I could still self harm there, and I did. Even though I was on every fifteen minutes, then moved up to twenty four hour supervision after I spoke with a consultant. They tried to take my shoe laces and the strings out of my hoodies, but I convinced them style was too important to me, even though I knew it kept me the option of killing myself.

It was terrifying to start with. Being searched. Being made to wait with people you’ve never met. I met this great BPD girl though whom I’m starting to make friends with. She made me feel safe. I respect her for that, regardless of her issues, but I guess that’s because they are basically mine. She’s safe though. And made me feel safer.

The first ward I was on was the first with a bed, although technically I shouldn’t have been there due to me not fitting into its catchment area. The ward itself wasn’t so bad. The beds were a bit uncomfy, but it was clean and you had your own en suite bathroom. You could still have electronic devices like phones and laptops, though the chargers were kept in a locked office and everything had to be charged in there so you had no access to cords. The lack of music was depressing, especially as it’s one of my main self soothe techniques and I was seriously distressed. My allocated nurse was lovely and really helped me with my orientation and said she’d work to keep me on that ward as I’d find it distressing to move. She also told me that if they did move me, she’d put on my notes that I’d need access to music for soothing anxiety and my macbook for uni purposes. Although we weren’t allowed lighters, we could smoke every hour, and often in between because the nurses were pretty safe. I began to feel I could be ok spending a week in that ward.

Then on my second night, whilst I was sleeping, a nurse came in and told me a bed had become available in the ward that took in those from my catchment area and I had five minutes to pack up and move. I was distressed, tired and crying. My lovely allocated nurse had gone home so I couldn’t even look to her for help. Luckily, the girl I arrived with and the girl I’d made friends with had to be moved too, so I wasn’t alone in my shock and distress.

Once I got down to the other ward, everything got worse. They took my phone, my iPad, my macbook, my 3DS. All because they had cameras. They also took my make up because most of it had mirrors in it, and my perfumes because they came in glass bottles. They wanted my shoe laces and hoodie chords. All the time I was crying because I though my original nurse was supposed to help me in this scenario and I was tired and confused. I can admit my behaviour was quite extreme, but still, what do you expect from someone in an inpatient mental health ward. I asked to see the consultant because I couldn’t comprehend what was going on, but he just shouted at me “Rules are rules. You are causing too much distress. Either you discharge yourself right now, or I’ll discharge you right now.” So I got my shit together and left.

Having no where to go, I sat in the hospital courtyard crying. I ended up self harming to try and make it better, but it didn’t help. I just wanted to die. I watched the blood pool on the pavement and felt the release, but still just craved for it all to be over. I can honestly say I was on the cusp of running away. Getting out of London, maybe to the sea.

Luckily, I saw someone I knew from the Home Treatment Team (HTT) who’d always been safe to me. I called him over and he gave me a big hug and took me to A&E. I was hardly there any time, but this great guy had made some calls and got my family to agree to take me home and to be under HTT care whilst I was still in “crisis”. My Daddy came and got me. My family had tidied my room and bought me comfy pjs and tried to make me feel homely. I just wanted to go to sleep. It’s hard to sleep on a Valium detox though. It’s three thirty am right one and I’m still going.

Since being home, I’ve been seeing the HTT and they’ve been giving me the appropriate detox for my addiction so I can’t hoard tablets. They still don’t seem to have picked up on the fact I have enough aspirin to kill myself. I’ve gone back to self harming once or twice a day and am plagued by suicidal thoughts. No hope. No belief. Each day is a challenge to not just do it and get this all over with, but as I’ve said before, I have my thread of logic. I just don’t know how long that thread can last before it snaps.

The HTT are beginning to worry about not being able to keep me safe, especially as my self harm is escalating in severity and quantity and I am still actively suicidal. For now, they think it’s best to keep me in the community, but they are definitely considering putting me back into the inpatient ward from hell. It’s talked about most times they visit.

I don’t know what tomorrow holds. Maybe it’ll be great, but it’ll probably just be more of the same. I don’t believe it can be better.

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Filed under Addiction, bad day, bpd, fuck, home treatment team, Hospital, Mental health, NHS, recovery, self harm

supported accommodation.

So I’ve decided that, at least for a bit, I’m going to alternate between posts of where I am right now and posts from before. The last one was obviously from October and times have changed a lot since then. I’m in a way better place and right now isn’t the worst.

Right now, I’m lying in my own little garden at the back of my own little flat. It’s sunny and I look like the 80s happened all over me. I have some wine, a good book and a blanket. And I’m preparing my bee grenade. It’s summery and nice and I’m in a good mood. Today is a good day, although I am a little bored. So this is me trying to be productive. After this I have something really important and even more productive to do so I’ve gotta get on it. But I’m going to try keep to my blog for a bit as I think it’s important for me to focus my energies on creating things as well as just absorbing them. There was a long time when I stopped creating. I used to write in my journal everyday, blog a few times a week, sketch, draw and create digital art and it mostly just stopped. I think the only thing I created in like a year was like a picture of a dying rose and a girl in tears. I guess all consuming, unhealthy relationships which turn your life upside down do that to you.

Things have really changed though. Firstly, I love my little flat. I’m so house proud it is unreal. Maybe I’ll do a post of pictures in a bit, but right now, my camera and laptop are inside and the sun is happening. It took ages to get this flat sorted, but now I’m in a self contained, supported little home. And it has rooms. Multiple rooms. And a hall. I lined all my shoes up in the hall so that everyone who visits will see how awesome my shoes are. And I have nice, colourful things all around. And I like to put flowers on my little dining table that I don’t think I have ever used.

Supported housing is weird. I had housing issues for a while, so I organised seeing my psychiatrist at the CRT (previously the CMHT, now the Community Recover Team) who referred me to the social work part of the team. It took weeks, but I got this awesome social worker called Helen. She took one look at me and said that council housing was probably not a good first step, but that I should probably wind up in low support accommodation. Then there was a suicide attempt, but that’ll but in a different, from before post, and she changed her recommendation to high support. I was put at the top of the list and then it was a waiting game.

Anyway, she left and I wound up with a new social worker called Bonnie. A flat came up in medium support and she recommended I go for it, so I did and here I am a couple of months later. Bonnie’s left too now, so I’ve got a new care co-ordinator called Shagufta who’s an occupational therapist. I don’t really know what they do, but hopefully she won’t leave and hopefully she’s nice. I’m meeting her on May 23rd so I guess we’ll wait and see.

Back to the flat though. It’s nice. Its on the ground floor, at the back of the building, so I can see the garden through my windows. It’s in a block of five flats, all supported for people with mental health problems. I’ve not met anyone from my block yet, though I’ve seen two of them. One is really hot and I saw him this morning all pretty and in the hall and topless. He knows he’s pretty though and that annoyed me. The other guy is really old and wears a bowler hat. He lives in the flat next door so I can sometimes see him through the windows at the front of the block. He does not look like he’s having any fun. Trust. Oh and there’s these two brothers, one of whom lives here, who always leave the back gate open and I see in the garden all the time. They walk past my windows and look in like the alien from signs when they’re filming the kids birthday party and it comes out the grass. Creepy. I’m sure they’re not. Maybe I just need net curtains. But then I won’t see the daisies.

At first, I was really apprehensive about the supported aspect. I think this was mainly due to fear of the unknown. I mean, I know how to cook and clean and all that, so I didn’t know what help they could be. It’s not like they can stop me self harming or prevent me from doing any damage to myself. Actually though, I really think it’s for the best. I have to floating support workers, a main one called Angela and another one called Miuri. Angela is a bit odd. She’s got a kinda fleeting thought process that she likes to speak out load, but she’s nice and is actually really helpful. She comes to my CPAs, doctors appointments and things, helps me sort out bills etc., and makes sure that I’m comfortable, safe and doing ok. I don’t think she can tell if I’m safe or doing ok, but she can help make sure I’m comfy. Like if something breaks, she helps me out. I like her a lot, even though she’s a bit ditzy. And she swears a lot, which I like, but she always reprimands herself for. Miuri and me mostly just chat. We talk about cooking and hair and boys and I teach her recipes and things. She’s such a sweetie. I think they’ve only seen me freak out once, even though I’ve freaked out way more than that, I just don’t tell them. Maybe I should, but I don’t see how that’d help. I duno.

The one big downside to all of this is that I’m flat out broke all the time. Bills on your own are hard. At uni, everything was split six ways, but all alone, it’s not. And I’m still waiting for my PIP assessment so god knows if my income will improve at all. Benefits is not an easy life, but I’m still pretty unstable, I’m still a student and I’ve still got a long way to go, so no one seems to be thinking a job so soon is the way I should be going. I’m on housing benefit, ESA, council tax benefit (though I still have to pay them £15 pound a month – you’re not exempt unless you’re on PIP) and it’s still hardly enough to get by. Money bums me out.

But do you know what doesn’t bum me out? Where I live. Not just the flat either. I love the area. It’s got a proper community vibe. There’s a lot of social housing around here. Lots of estates, lots of streets of council houses. All around this one, proper high street. You can achieve really good chicken. Like painfully good. And it’s got really nice shops and things. I love it here. I don’t want to move, though I’ll have to in a year or two. Supported housing isn’t forever, you either move to higher, lower or no support after a one or two year tenancy.

All in all, life isn’t exactly easy, but things have really improved. I love putting little decorations up and making myself a little home. Living alone can be hard, but for me, I think it’s worth the effort. I don’t have to hide away, deal with unwanted advances from housemates, feel like I’m excluded r from my own home. This is now my home and I love it. I couldn’t ask for more. I can have who I want over, when I want. Or not. It’s great.

I’m lucky in some ways. A lot of people need social housing and right now, there’s a social housing crisis in London. I’m not lucky to have been put in the position where I got accommodation so quickly, but a lot of people aren’t deemed vulnerable enough to even get emergency accommodation in the borough. The right to buy scheme means that there are less council houses ever year, affordable housing and local authority housing isn’t being built quick enough and people wind up waiting in the system for years before they can get any help all. It’s pretty fucked. From here, once my tenancy is up, I’ll be one of the top priorities for council or LHA flats, and although I’m seriously grateful for that, I can’t help but feel horrible for all the people that don’t get the same opportunities because they’re not “sick” enough or don’t have children or haven’t yet been made street homeless, but are waiting on pending evictions. The system is broken and, although it has worked for me, the housing crisis is out of control. I’ve been unlucky enough to be prioritised, but it just gives me guilt for all the people that are so much more unlucky that they aren’t.

Fucking welfare cuts. Fucking welfare cap. Fucking Conservative bastards making those with hard lives have to fight all that much harder. Fucking Atos and their stupid assessments. Britain should be proud of its welfare state, not undermining it at every chance. And don’t even get me started on NHS cuts. The affects of that in my foundation trust for mental health have been uncontrollably damaging. But that’ll be for another post.

I’ll get off my soap box now. I’m going to go back to reading a beautiful book (The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman) and listening to some beautiful music (The Blank Project by Neneh Cherry and produced by Four Tet).

Hope this wasn’t super boring.

Lovelove x.

 

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Filed under Benefits, bpd, CRT, general, Housing, life, music, Progress, recovery, Welfare

the worst month of my life.

I wrote this in October 2013, so it’s a bit backdated, but I guess it gives a quick overview of where I’ve been and, my mental health history for anyone that might read this and not want to track back and starts to show how I got where I am I guess. Hopefully it’s not too self indulgent.

Ok so maybe this isn’t quite the worst month of my life, but it’s definitely top five. I think it’s actually quite hard to tell sometimes just what was the worst thing ever, especially in the moment. Loads of things are awful. Bereavement sucks. Being dumped sucks. Not having enough money to buy the shower gel you really wanted sucks. Maybe when you’re really old and looking back at your life you work it out. All I know is that this month has been monumentally tragic, even in comparison to a lot of my other awful times. It’s almost laughable, if it wasn’t me, In this post, I’m going to explain why.

Within the month of October 2013, I’ve been dumped by a boy I loved (who had the emotional maturity of a grapefruit), who I then got back together with for a total of four days, only to be dumped again and have him steal my pitiful amount of money. I then made that fantastic choice of fucking him, just to let him tell me how much I suck and how crazy and sad I am. Followed by him leaving the country. My housing situation is tenuous I think. Some major disagreements with the family led to me living with said boy, which has now left me living half with my family, which is difficult for them as much as for me, and living half with a drug dealer who can set me up with some tasks when I’m more than my average broke. Being broke should go on this list, but that’s pretty much a permanent. My treatment has increased – I’m now, I’m in treatment for mental health problems almost every day and I’m being offered NHS funded private rehab for at least three months. All of which means I have to face the highly likely prospect of taking yet another year out of finishing the one year masters degree I’m already in my fourth year of. Even so, I’m still barely coming to terms with the fact that I have something labelled “complex needs” by essentially all health and social care workers. This is not exactly how I imagined my life would be at 24.

Getting where I am right now has been a painfully long process. In reality, everyone’s life is just a painfully long process from birth to wherever they are now I guess. I could start my story in childhood, which my therapist says probably was invalidating and hindered my emotional development or some next drama, but it’s not important. I had a nothing but lovely childhood. My conscious awareness of some sort of emotional issue probably started in my teens. At around 13, I started drinking, smoking, getting high, liking boys and self-harming. Self-harm at that point wasn’t weird. My friends all did it too, I just took it further, and never really stopped. I think looking back, I probably was a little more nervous and a little unhappier than my peers, but at the time I wasn’t emotionally capable of looking outside my own world and hindsight is often a fallacy. I got good at self-harming, and even better at hiding it.

By 15, no one talked about it, but I still did. I also started having panic attacks all the time. I went to my GP and got my first mental health diagnosis – depression and panic disorder. Off I went to some fairly dull and pointless counselling, which may have been great if I’d engaged with it, but at 15, how many people can be fucked?

I got through college with a lot of cigarettes, alcohol, drugs, self-harm and boys. I got through it well and did really quite good considering, but that life had its toll. Too many nights of too much excess in clubs I was definitely too young to be in led to me completely crashing emotionally. Just before my exams. I spent weeks in bed, ran away to Yorkshire, spent more weeks in bed and was dragged to my GP again. Again, the diagnosis was depression. This time I was prescribed Prozac (and later citalopram), told to go to the surgery counsellor and sent on my way.

I didn’t go to the counsellor. Instead, I ran off to Bristol for university. My first year of uni was properly batshit cray. Antidepressants, a change in contraceptive pill, dropping all my hobbies and friends and family to enter the horror of finding new hobbies and friends was all a little much. My self-harm and generally crazy behaviours went into overdrive and behind closed doors (but in front of my unfortunate, but ultimately a prick new boyfriend), I became the most dramatic crazy person ever. Inefficiently executed suicide attempts, blood and sharpie markers all over me and my dorm, running away, cold showers with all my clothes still on, half a litre of vodka each night, drugs wherever I could find them. It was messy, but with no follow up from my GP, it all went unnoticed. 

When I finally cold turkey gave up the antidepressants at the end of summer, I was fucking miserable and doing seriously terrible at uni. I hated myself, I felt like a failure and I didn’t know what to do. Lucky for me, I quickly found losing weight. I focused myself on to eating healthy and going to the gym and found something I was good at. I was bloody fantastic at losing weight. It made me feel good. It made me feel proud. It made me feel in control (finally). So I did that, and I dropped self-harm, got substantially less trashed, was able to focus on university and slowly became more and more focused on losing weight. That went on for the next three years and I ended up seriously underweight and trapped in anorexia, obsessing over food and exercise. Still, I did good at uni and I graduated well, so started and MA.

Halfway through my MA, I became so critically ill that, after being shipped around various primary care therapy services, I was referred to a specialist eating disorders unit (EDU) and started actually getting treatment. I was so unwell, my uni boyfriend from Bristol wound up dumping me and we spent the next year and a half breaking up. Turns out he was an abusive bastard and I couldn’t see it. Years of domestic from someone I loved is pretty hard to deal with if you don’t have an eating disorder to escape from it.

For a while, I was still too unwell with anorexia to really noticed what it was providing me, so I was still focused and obsessed enough to complete all my taught units in my MA, but by my last assignment (two years after starting my MA), I was almost out of treatment with my EDU, emotionally disastrous, self-harming everyday, on and off of antipsychotics and mood stabilisers, back on antidepressants and in and out of hospital for stitches, glue and lethal overdoses (I’d got smarter since I was last like this, so way more efficient. Intelligence isn’t always a good thing). It was around this time my EDU diagnosed me with borderline personality disorder and referred me to my local Community Mental Health Team (CMHT). By this point, I was too ill to even contemplate a dissertation so decided to defer my assessment.

This last year, I’ve been in dialectical behavioural therapy (DBT – specialist therapy for people with borderline), but I’ve also been honing my alcohol and Valium misuse to block out all my difficult thoughts and emotions, and topping them off with whatever other substances head my way. I went into another relationship with yet another person who doesn’t know how to treat their partner and wound up homeless, scarred, broke and an addict. I hadn’t realised I was an addict until a few weeks ago when I was told. I thought I was going to be able to finish my degree this year, have some time off and hopefully start a PGCE and I was finally letting myself get some hope that I might be able to catch up to my peers and actually set up some sort of life I can be proud of. That’s suddenly looking less likely right now. I’m now in a drug and alcohol treatment program 3-4 days a week, individual DBT once a week, group. DBT once a week, my day programme key worker once a fortnight, my Community Drug and Alcohol Team (CDAT) case worker once a fortnight, my Community Recovery Team (CRT – previously my CMHT) psychiatrist once a month and my CRT social worker at some point and some amount. And you know I might be in rehab in a few months.

So here I am. Worst. Month. Ever. I’m actually pretty fucking unhappy right now, but I’m sure that’s not exactly hard to guess. Apparently (according to mental health workers), I suffer ‘severe and enduring’ mental health problems, I’m ‘high risk’ of serious injury, physical illness or death, I’m ‘low functioning’ and have a limited ability to independently thrive within mainstream society and I have ‘complex needs.’ I guess I have got a kinda complex case – you can tell by the amount of people involved in my care (it’s got to the point where it’s overwhelming and confusing).

Still, I’m smart, articulate and jokes, plus try so hard to be nice to people. For some unknown reason, I fully believe this pessimist shit sells me short. I don’t want to be in treatment or care or whatever all my life. I think I’ve got potential. I’ve got through a lot and still have a load more to do, but maybe I can be more then all these unhelpful labels.

Anyway, I’ve blogged before, mostly about my recovery from anorexia. I didn’t realise it’d get more complicated after that and I let a lot of my real life friends read it. I’m not all that sure about sharing addiction and self harm problems with my real life friends yet is a good idea, but I don’t like hiding away. I found it really helpful blogging though, and I think maybe blogging more would be useful still. It might not be though. Or maybe I’ll be too high to look at it. We’ll see I guess.

If you got this far, thank you for reading. Wish me luck.

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Filed under Addiction, bad day, bpd, CDAT, CMHT, eating disorder, fuck, general, Housing, HTT, life, Mental health, NHS, rant, rubbish, self harm, therapy, university

skyrim.

So I thought I’d maybe do an opening post on where I am now. There is only one real answer to that, and that is Skyrim. I know I know I am super late because it’s so old now and everyone’s already played it yarda yarda etc., but I wanted to do a post about how video games can really help me improve my mental health. They are obviously not for everyone (only for those of us who are slightly more inclined towards the geekier side of things), but since moving, Skyrim has been a seriously special thing to me.

I used to game a lot when I was little, but I had this absolutely horrendous, abusive boyfriend when I went to university who essentially told me I was rubbish for doing it because I wasn’t paying him enough attention. He’s a douche and waaaay out of the picture. But anyway, by the time that was over I was totally locked in anorexia so gaming was still a really difficult thing to get into again. It was only once I gained weight and recovered from anorexia that I was able to game again. I started out with some old classics like Metal Gear Solid and moved on to Tomb Raider Survivor, Uncharted and some Resistance: Fall of Man. I found these super cathartic as I was so engaged with something else, visually, physically and audibly, that I could escape my own feelings and emotions and put them to one side whilst distressing emotions within me calmed down. However, the situations I found myself in meant gaming became harder and harder. I installed Baldur’s Gate on my iPad (if any of you are old and naff enough to remember this) so I could game on the go, but my life was really hectic.

There are other was to calm down your emotions obviously. I could have a nice bath, or read some Neil Gaiman, but, you know, I could beat some dragons to death with a war-hammer. For me, it’s the dragons that work every time.

See, I find books difficult to engage in when I’m stressed. It’s uses like, one sense, and that just isn’t distracting enough, and if I’m in a bad place, the last thing I want to do is stare at my body. I don’t hate it, but like basically any girl living in a world in which unrealistic expectations are expected of or bodies, I don’t think “wowzas – what a hottie.” I need to find something with a story that can engulf me, something complicated enough to engage me in puzzle solving, and something beautiful enough to stare at for hours. Enter Skyrim.

Since moving, I’ve had no internet. I’ve not been able to binge watch tv series till I’m blue in the face. I’ve not been able to sit and let something mildly entertaining wash over me. I think this has both pros and cons. I find it incredibly easy to let my emotions run wild when I’m just casually watching something, and I also find that the background noise has become a part of my ritual for self-harming. Stupid, but true. Nothing grabs me enough. When I first moved, I watched a lot of shit T.V. – me and Parking Mad became good friends I won’t lie. I’d watch reruns of T.V. shows I hated on Dave at three am. No fun for anyone.

One evening, I had my brother and a mate over. He’d previously given me Skyrim (the legendary addition with all the DLC already on the disk) and that night he installed it. I’d like to say the next day I was suckered in, but that’d be a lie. I spent the whole day not sleeping and ended up watching Dirty Weekenders in France (the one with Richard E. Grant), under a duvet, on my sofa, eating Super Noodles. The next day, Skyrim happened.

You start the game, pick your gender, race, hair colour, makeup (fuck make up – my Wood Elf has war paint bitches), spend a while giving them some sort of maybe acceptable face and giving her some kick ass curves then off you go – in to the world of Skyrim.

Skyrim is part RPG, part soap. There’s like a main storyline involving dragons and shouting and all this crazy stuff. I’ve been playing it for over 75 hours and I still don’t really no where that’s going except for the fact that, at some point, imma have to merk some proper badman head dragon with all my shouting. I get most of my fun in the side quests. I just finished the Thieves’ Guild side quest (which took many hours) and now I’m really good at pickpocketing, lock picking and being super stealthy. I am Queen of the sneak attack. I play the longest game in the longest way. I hide, shoot a boss with an arrow, run away till I’m hidden, then go back and do it again. See, the Thieves’ Guild had lost it’s reputation as being proper hard thieves, and I had to restore it back to its immoral street cred. Now I am MASTER OF THE THIEVES! This has nothing to do with the main story, it was just fun.

It isn’t just big side quests. There are miscellaneous, teeny tiny quests too. Like finding someone a book. One time, I had to find three, flawless amethysts for this lizard dude so he could make an engagement ring for his wife (as per lizard customs obvs). And you can buy a house! You can buy a few houses, but because I have the DLC stuff, I’m saving my p so I can build a fucking huge yard once I get the 100,000 gold achievement, so my one house is pretty shit. It’s full of cobwebs and hay, but fuck that. Imma build a mansion and then get married and adopt some children. Because you can do that in Skyrim. You can get married, pimp your house out and adopt some kids. Complete and utter soap opera drama. Except every now and then, a dragon pops up you have to deal with. My weapon of choice here is my Nightingale bow and my elven war hammer. Beat them to the ground and absorb that dragon soul init fam.

It is so addictive and so engaging. It’s actually hard to write this post because I want to play it more now and I know my Mum is sleeping over tonight to watch lots of Avatar (the last air bender variety – don’t get twisted). I only have five hours to play it and I need to get dressed and stuff. Urgh. People get in the way of my Skyrim dreams.

But back to my main point. Yes, I admit I am a bit of a geek, but it’s one of the best ways to distract myself from my own distressing emotions. I get to engage in all the ridiculous lives of made up characters and I temporarily forget my own ridiculous life. Yes it is an avoidance thing, but in all honesty, distraction as a technique is better than cutting yourself in a moment of severe, emotional distress. You can deal with the problems once you’ve got your emotions back under control and through the use of emotional regulation skills like building mastery (a.k.a. getting shit you find hard to do done, even if it’s the washing up) so you feel like you’re achieving and making progress forward. It’s so much easier to do once you’ve let your emotions calm down a little by engulfing yourself in this mentalist world of ridiculously silly fun. And also, you can not play video games when you are off your face trashed on Valium. You just get shit at it, so it’s a really good way of distracting from addictive thoughts as well. Honestly, Skyrim has been so good for my mental health that I’d recommend anyone going through a rough patch to get themselves involved in some seriously addictive gaming.

Just be wary. You may end up forgoing sleep all together. Then you’re not really addressing your problems, you just play it till 10am then sleep all day, the play it again. Avoiding avoidance is something DBT tries to encourage. My support worker hates me because I’m never awake. Sometimes, you have to plan to not play it so you can be awake. I had to take a week off to be productive, be social and have a bit of a life. I was a little sad. No lie.

So this is what I’ve been up to recently. I can be more detailed in how I got here. Or not. You decide.
And remember – you have been warned.

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Filed under Addiction, bad day, bpd, coping strategies, general, life, Progress, recovery, self harm, therapy, Video games

differences and change.

So it’s been a while since I last posted and a lot has gone on. I’ve written a lot of posts and I’ve written, lots of diary entrances when I haven’t had access to computers, but like, after being kicked out, evicted, sponging off my best friend, being dumped, gaining a social worker, a suicide attempt, hospitalisation, running away from hospital, a lot of time under the HTT, losing a social worker and gaining a new one, graduating DBT group and finishing individual therapy, completing level one addiction treatment at Turning Point, more time under the HTT, completing an Intuitive Recovery course with Turning Point (getting me a level one qualification in health and social care as well!), finally getting my own flat at the end of March (all be it through the council and it’s medium mental health supported) and yesterday I finally got internet! It’s been really bloody hectic but I have some posts. I don’t know whether I should even post them as it’d be backdating so much. Or if anyone would read this. Or if I should start a new blog. This began as an eating disorder recovery blog and has definitely changed direction quite a lot, but I’m trying really hard to build up a life outside of my mental health problems, and maybe this would tie me to them, or maybe this could help me see how far I’ve really come. I duno. Maybe it could help others who have gone through similar stuff. Maybe that’s just arrogance.

If there are any readers out there, lemme know what you think.

Lovelove x.

(ps. Sorry I haven’t been keeping up with everyone. I’ve not had internet access and I’ve gone through a lot the past few months. I feel rubbish. I hope you’re all ok x.)

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Filed under Addiction, bpd, eating disorder, Hospital, Housing, HTT, life, NHS, recovery, self harm

confusing times

Hiya guys! I wonder if anyone even remembers this blog exists. I sure don’t most of the time. A lot has changed I guess. I think the biggest, bestest change is that I really don’t worry about food that much. I stay around the same weight, though I duno how much that is because I haven’t weighed myself in about six months. I know my clothes all fit the same, basically all the time. And it’s a healthy size too. So for an eating disorder blog, there seems to be a distinct lack of eating disorder happening. I just eat – sometimes healthy, sometimes McDonald’s. I still have a bit of a problem with drinking calories, but I do when I really want to and it has no real negative impact on my life, doesn’t play on my mind and doesn’t give me unreal amounts of guilt so I don’t think it’s a problem.

It’s been quite nice taking a super long time off blogging because its given me time to get away from that eating disorder mindset. I haven’t focused on it and I don’t think about it too much. It’s good. Great in fact. I’ve been moving on and I’m doing well and kinda losing that bit of my identity. I mean, it still is plays a part in making me who I am, but in a kinda positive way. I eat a whole load of junk and I don’t have mad guilt. I now just think “I’m eating this because its tasty and I enjoy it and it makes me feel good.” I don’t even think about calories. I don’t read food packaging religiously. I just eat, but whilst actually thinking positively about it and enjoying food as it should be enjoyed really. I duno if I would have got to this point without having been eating disordered in the first place. I duno if I would have actually ever been able to reach a point where food is just enjoyable and good, with no baggage. And I feel fucking awful for anyone that struggles to eat without mental drama of some sort. Being a girl that eats like a beast is now a part of who I am. I like that.

What other things are new…

Well I’m basically living south of the river now (ergh) with some friends. There was essentially this huge dramarama involving self-harm, overdosing, stitches and Gym.  It really wasn’t his fault, but he was trashed and responded badly, then he was banned from my home so we moved to his. Then he got evicted, so we moved to whoever would have us. My friends said they’d put him up for a month and me up as long as I want. It’s good to get some space from what’s going on at home and I’m intending on heading back there, but for now I’m back in the family homestead.

See, I’m not sure I even have any blogging friend anymore. I’m not sure anyone who might read this will understand me or even care. I used to have blog friends, but I disappeared for almost a year. I got wrapped up in a boy who I love and gave all I have too. I lost myself entirely and in truth, I didn’t mind. I got attached in a really BPD way. He was my all or nothing. My emotional self became entirely reliant and I began to need him in a way I guess he didn’t respond to. I find trust almost impossible, find it hard to have him leave for a little while because it feels like rejection and I get desperate for him to stay. I try and fix anything and go to completely ridiculous extents. In one argument, he wanted space and tried to leave whilst I ended up on my knees, crying and begging him to stay. He controlled all my love and all my anxiety. I can understand my illogical, broken thinking, but it still effects my emotions and behaviours. Our arguments became fierce. My whole self became dependent on him.

At the same time, his life has kinda fallen apart. He’s homeless, with terrible credit and a job with shit pay. He’s shit at saving as well which doesn’t help and hasn’t got a great support network. He needs to sort his shit out. I’ve done nothing but try to help, but apparently my help wasn’t very good. In his opinion, he isn’t in a position to have a relationship right now. I get it, but it’s killing me.

Apparently I’m also too much. I rely on him too much and became too much of a priority for him. I stressed him though. I call too much, text too much, need to see him too much. I rely on him to help me be ok. He can’t do it right now and fix his own life up. He says it’s just too much. He says he loves me and does want a relationship right now, but he needs a break. A break to fix up his life whilst I fix up mine. A break of an undisclosed amount of time.

I didn’t want a break. I wanted to step back from the relationship, but keep a relationship going. He didn’t. We decided we’d stay friends during the break. We’d still contact each other, see each other a little etc., but then I think he changed his mind. He wants to emotionally detach from me. I don’t want this at all. I don’t even know if we’re good together but I want him in my life so much. So I sent him a text telling him what I was up to, but a few hours later he text me to tell me how much it wasn’t ok. I was out at a party, having a really nice time, totally trashed, but these texts devastated me. I had to go home, in absolute mountains of tears, too trashed to deal with it and hurting too much to understand.

We ended up texting last night. He told me it’s either no contact or break up. I said I needed time to think about it and he gave me the night. Then changed his mind that I had a night and stopped communication then and there. I don’t know if we’ve broken up or not. I also don’t understand how the break would end if we’re not talking and there’s no end date. He text in the middle of the night to explain why he was being a bit of a dick, but didn’t explain anything or apologise.

So now I’m just confused and hurting and I don’t know what to do. It sucks out really. Apparently I love him and he loves me, but maybe we can’t talk and maybe we can. Maybe we’ve broken up, maybe we’re on a break. I can’t ask because contacting might make him angry and hate me more. I don’t know what I want or what he wants and I’m desperately sad. I’m so sad because I’m so confused. It’s so unpredictable and unstable and I don’t know what to do. I don’t know whether to move on or keep where I am. I feel really horrible and I can’t turn to the person I care most about to help me.

Logic and emotion always fighting.

And what sucks the most is that I do think I’m making progress. I’ve been in treatment essentially since I met him and I am moving forward. My risk behaviours are way down. Almost none at all. I haven’t taken any really damaging overdoses or self harmed in months. I’m relying more heavily on drugs and alcohol to get through, but that’s less damaging. Maybe. The other day I was too trashed, slipped on a space hopper and broke my nose and possibly my teeth so it’s still a little bit damaging. My treatment is going good I think. I’m getting a new psychiatrist who I’m seeing tomorrow. I’m going to ask for maybe a mental health social worker if I can. I have housing and money problems now. My family home is supportive right now, but I don’t think it’s helping my mental health. After the drama, I feel kinda at a loss here. I love my family dearly, but after the drama and all the talk of not wanting to support me and how it’d be easier for them if I wasn’t here, it makes me need to go. I don’t know. I’ll be south of the river againIn a few days really. I have to learn to rely on myself. Money is a problem. My lack of structure is a difficulty. Basically, I’m in need to carving out a little life for myself.

So we’ll see. I’m going to hopefully start blogging a bit more about treatment and the steps I need to move forward and all that business. I want to start this up as a recovery blog again, but right now I’m not feeling strong in recovery right now. I thought maybe if I got this self indulgent stuff out of my system and started to find an outlet to talk about recovery techniques and skills and stuff again, maybe I could find some independent recovery focus again. I duno. It might not work and I might not keep the blogging up. We’ll see.

I’m going to read some blogs now. Distract myself from what’s happening right now and hopefully feel a little better. I think I need a lot of distraction right now. A lot of self soothe techniques, and general distress tolerance skills. Maybe I’ll blog about them soon.

I doubt anyone will I read this but maybe it’ll help me. Maybe write again soon.

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Filed under bad day, bpd, CMHT, coping strategies, eating disorder, general, life, rant, recovery, therapy