Category Archives: Mental health

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

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