Tag Archives: avoidance


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.


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

what i’ll be thinking about this valentine’s day.

There are a few blog posts I want to do. I want to put up the skills I’m learning in DBT, I want to look at some of the stuff I’m doing to actually try and stuff, but for now I’m going to talk about relationships and BPD because that’s what’s on my mind. This is a bare long post. Sorry.

The Internet is literally full of people giving their opinions on dating people with BPD. Most of these opinions are pretty fucking negative. There are websites devoted to “How to tell if you’re dating a crazy, borderline girl”, why you should never get involved with someone with BPD (it’s been suggested that we have no empathy and are actually evil), and even a “How to train your borderline” site for those stupid enough to take us on. Apparently we make bad girlfriends, boyfriends, fiancés, husbands, wives, partners, whatever really.

Now, I really fucking hate the internet sometimes. It seems to be full of guys that hate that they got dumped, seeking revenge by writing out how their ex “must have BPD”, but at the same time, some of the hateful articles out their do have some elements of truth I guess, and that’s what makes me really upset.

I’m starting a new relationship right now. I have no real expectation of where it will go. I like Gym some ridiculous amount. He makes me laugh and tells me nice things and is very silly and jumps around my bedroom with me and thinks it’s a good idea to take leftover drugs at 4am because its lolz and I find him bare attractive and its all kinda good right now. I didn’t want to like him. I was looking for an easy fuck. I was ready to inevitably feel a bit rubbish or decide that maybe he liked me too much and run off. In the end though, he won me over. And it was all him – he kept asking me out in a joke/serious way until I eventually got annoyed at him and gave in. We are not the world’s most romantic couple, but we’ll do.

The problems come in when I think about how I relate to him. I knew exactly how to get him to want me and on some level and I do believe I kinda manipulated him to catch him in some sort of web of my spider-evilness. I don’t know how much of it is premeditated because it doesn’t feel like some sort of plan, but sometimes it feels that way. It feels like it’s a mixture of the perfect amount of filth, the perfect amount of nonchalance, the perfect amount of emotional distancing. It’s about being physically attainable, but mentally cut off. You show the right amount of flesh and the right amount of guarded psychological distress and you’re in. Its basically shouting, “I’m emotionally vulnerable, will sleep with you and expect nothing in return.” I think a lot of guys don’t expect that. I’m really upfront and confident in what I’m doing and men seem drawn to it, often because they secretly think that they can break through all the emotional defenses and maybe get to know you. You make yourself super buff so you know and they know your fucking desirable, then you feed them a slight bit of emotional drama and suddenly they’re interested. It like they good “hot AND deep…. Shit she’s different and worth knowing.” Men can be very predictable.

What makes me sad is this is what they say in all these helpful “How to spot a borderline” articles. At first, we manipulate you with sex and being damaged.  I don’t exactly do it on purpose, but at the same time, it is kinda what I do. I don’t think, “here, have this calculated amount of my drama”, but instead I try to hide the drama as much as I can. Unfortunately, a body covered in scars (old and new), regular psychiatric appointments and having mental health workers visit you daily can sometimes make hiding it hard. And I don’t look like a stereotypical sket either. I wear DMs almost everyday, cut up t-shirts, and long sleeves, it’s just I also wear a lot of eyeliner, lipstick, tacky jewellery, shorts or little skirts and have my belly out. I look obvious and I like to think it makes it seem like I’m hot, but don’t give a fuck. It might not though. And that’s just how I dress for everyone. Saying that though, every time I go out is an opportunity to meet a boy so that’s not saying much. Still, I dress with getting men in mind so I guess that this is me behaving seductively. I feel like a right idiot writing this. I don’t think I’m necessarily super attractive or anything; I just work what I’ve got.

Apparently, this sort of behavior is common in people with BPD. As a group, it seems both people writing for and against dating someone with BPD, sexuality and seduction are apparently something we do well. I don’t know if I do it well, but I know I can be a tad… inappropriate (?) to get a man’s attention. You can read a lot about how people with BPD use overt sexuality to get what they want. It’s a validation thing. It doesn’t really matter if you even like someone, they just have to want you to validate that you are attractive because they would sleep with you. You crave the validation that you can be attractive and people would want to be around you in some way, so you pick the easiest way to seek validation from people you don’t know – look shit hot and flirt like a motherfucker. When you’re turned down, you feel like fucking nothing, but most of the time you get at least some positive attention. I really hate that I do this because really, it can make you feel worthless in the long run, and also it’s gross and also it makes me a bit of a bad feminist. I disagree entirely with the idea that anyone’s worth is based on his or her levels of physical attractiveness in the eyes of others, but I apply it to myself anyway. I wish I actually didn’t give a fuck rather than sculpting an image like I don’t.

My next phase of starting a relationship is one you don’t see on the sites warning you away from people with BPD. It’s the “SHIT! RUN!” phase. You start to actually like someone and worse of all, they start to like you back. Except they don’t like you back because you suck so much and all they actually want to do is hurt you. Liking people is something that comes naturally to me. I actually pretty much like everyone, especially when they’re new. There are rules to like people (obviously). Like, if they are someone else’s (because yes, people are kinda possessions in my mind), then you can’t get too close because they’ll always be someone they like more and you’ll always be inferior so are likely to want more than they can give because other people are in the way, so you distance yourself because they can’t like you enough. You don’t want to get caught out liking someone who hates you, so you let them lead to start with. You don’t start conversations, text first or call people because they probably hate you and would find it annoying. Sometimes, when you get really caught up in someone, you break this rule with disastrous consequences. You break it when you at your most agitated, say and do thinks you regret and punish yourself for doing it later, then resolve to deliberately stay out of that persons way even more so you can’t be vulnerable. You have to take the stance that they probably don’t like you, so you protect yourself by being proactive and deciding to not like them first. This is how I make friends and to be honest, it doesn’t work very well. It takes a lot of effort to get me to loosen my grip on the rules, and generally a lot of time. In this phase, you have to be prepared to run the fuck away from people. At all points, you have to have an escape route planned. If someone actually likes you, they’re lying so you have to run. If you actually like someone, you’re vulnerable and you have to run.

I actually find myself asking people, after years of knowing them, if we can be friends now. This more often then not shocks people a little as they thought we were already friends. I however, thought they hated me the whole time.

The next phase is what I think of as the test phase. It’s not tests you plan or want to give (in fact, I try really hard to avoid them because I think they make me a bad person), but once you like someone enough and start to believe that maybe they like you, they start to play on your brain. When you get distressed, you want them to fix it, but you have no idea how to ask or what it is that needs fixing, so you start acting out. It seems pretty common for people to have an increase in BPD behaviours when starting a new relationship and I don’t think this is because we’re all horrible and manipulative. For me, it’s just I want to get someone to understand how much I hurt and to believe someone cares, so self-harming and other impulsive behaviours start escalating, and you start pulling people in to help you. It’s those blood all over you, pills across the floor, in need of hospital attention moments. If someone helps you, then maybe for a little while you think they understand, care and that maybe they can fill whatever it is that is missing. So you act out more, desperate for someone to understand and then fix you. They can’t fix you, but you hope anyway. It’s kinda like you’re testing them – seeing how far you can push someone to know they care. In the moment though, what you’re thinking is “shit. I’m vulnerable because I like someone and they hate me and I got everything wrong. Best do something to feel better. Well now I need help so I’m going to involve the first person to pop into my brain. Of course that’s the new person I’ve been upset about. Now they’re coming to my rescue. Maybe they care.” It’s a temporary release from the constant stress of not knowing for sure if someone likes you.

There’s also the obsessional, idealization phase. This one’s on those horrible websites too. The new person seems to do everything right and they quickly become the centre of your world, so you treat the accordingly. You shower them with everything positive you have to give, not for some manipulative, mean way, but because that’s how you genuinely feel. There is nothing they can do to change the fact that they are amazing, even if they really fuck up and you know that. They get all your attention, all your thoughts, all your time. You change your whole identity to fit with them, which of course doesn’t make a difference because you don’t have a real identity anyway and they are so perfect that you want to steal their identity for yourself. You start to rely on them because they are so different from people that have come before and they can give you everything you need and will save you from yourself because they have the answer to the unknown question that’s been bothering you your entire life. Apparently, this makes people feel wanted and special and is all part of the evil borderline’s plan to ruin someone’s life by luring them in through being nice.

This is me and Gym. I think this is an appropriate picture because I look like I completely adore him. I’m mostly putting it up to show off my new hair though. (He doesn’t always dress like that by the way – fancy dress party).

This is me and Gym. I think this is an appropriate picture because I look like I completely adore him. I’m mostly putting it up to show off my new hair though as the only pictures I have of it are with him blah. (He doesn’t always dress like that by the way – fancy dress party).

But like everything, this phase ends too. This is kinda where I think I am right now – that place where things start to change, inbetween the two phases. Every little thing is a sign that the other person hates you and wants to hurt you. I think it’s to do with beliefs. If you fully believe that you are awful, then you fully believe your can’t be liked. Everything becomes an attack. Youget over it because the other person does something lovely or you forget about it or whatever, and suddenly, you start to feel happy and comfy again and it’s all good. Again, it’s not even thought about, it’s just how you feel at the time. It’s constantly being on the look out for slights against you that prove your own opinions of yourself. When you get signs, everything is over; when you don’t, everything seems perfect. You’re always waiting for those signs that they’re going to hurt you though, and it’s better if you can push them away before they that happens. You avoid the future abandonment by pushing away the person who might abandon you. Then they prove they’re not going anyway and you stop pushing.

Today was a bad day for Gym and me if you hadn’t guessed yet. I got upset because he woke up unhappy and therefore he was bored of me. Yesterday, I decided he didn’t actually want to sleep with me enough so he thought I was ugly. The two thoughts together wound up in me telling him I’m considering breaking up with him because he is done with me and won’t admit it to me yet. Obviously, he responded by saying I’m an idiot and he really like me and thinks I’m super hot, but I didn’t believe him and we had this massive talk where he decided I have to just try and talk to him more about my worries rather than ruminate on them till they get too big. Maybe then I’ll trust him. Although I don’t think that’ll work, I eventually agreed to try because I actually like him and didn’t want to upset him. It was ok for a while… until I was trying to explain why I was sad again because I felt like I was ruining his day because I made him an omlette, but it was too big and he got too full. Yes, this really upset me because I ruined everything and he hated me. He told me he didn’t want to have the same conversation again because it was just long and went round in loops. I took that to mean he finds me boring so asked him to leave. As he was walking to the front door, I started raging, which he heard so came back. It went down hill from there. I was shouting and swearing and hitting myself in the head and crying and telling him how much I was failing and how much of a cunt I am and how I just fuck everything up and how much he hates me. I went on and on till he got super angry at me and started shouting “I just want a normal girlfriend. I want a girlfriend that can trust me and doesn’t tell me to leave when she’s upset and actually believes I want to be near her.” Even in his anger, he’s kinda nice. He was shouting “Why do you just think you suck at everything? You could do so much. You’re so smart, but you don’t think you can do anything when you could do anything. It makes me so angry.” The normal thing stung though. He hates it when I get worked up because he thinks I just shut down and make it difficult for him. I don’t know if I do, but still. Then he got really angry because I wouldn’t tell him I wanted to see him. I never ask to see him. Ever. He has to make the call to see me. He told me over and over to give him a straight answer, but all I could say was “There is no right answer. If I say yes, then I’m pressuring you to see me. If I say no, then I’m not giving you the attention you might want.” Eventually I just said no because it was easier than actually saying I wanted to see him. I’m vulnerable if I admit I want to see him, plus the prospect that I might become a burden is something that I’m so scared of, I’d rather not see him at all. Again, he was pissed because he just wanted me to be able to tell him I want to see him to show I care. Got that wrong as well I guess. I then asked Gym if he thought I was cut out for being in a relationship, to which he responded, “No one likes to hear this, but I just don’t think you’re trying hard enough. You’re doing everything right, just not enough.” Again, I freaked out. That just means I’m doing it wrong because I’m actually trying really hard, but it’s just not enough because I’m not enough and I suck etc.

So yer, I’ve been really worried about how BPD affects my ability to form healthy relationships. The Therapist told met trust issues are part and parcel of BPD. On top of that, a lot of this stuff seems pretty standard as far as the internet tells me. However, that doesn’t make it easier. All the information I find seems to say it is possible to have a relationship with someone with BPD, but it’s hard work. I don’t want to be hard work. I don’t want to be difficult. I want to be worth it and it just seems like I’m not. In a lot of ways, I’m beginning to think that maybe I just shouldn’t be in a relationship. Possibly ever. I’m upsetting someone I care about because I don’t know how to trust him, assume and look for the worst and have so little self-worth I can’t imagine that he even likes me. It upsets him. I find it difficult to understand why because it’s not like I don’t like him. I duno. I’m just worried I’m broken in some fundamental way that makes this all impossible. It doesn’t help that he really doesn’t understand BPD and thinks I don’t actually have it. I’m just really scared if I don’t shape up quickly, he’ll leave because I can’t give be a satisfying, “normal” girlfriend and he just has a bad time with me. I don’t know how to be different, but if I don’t learn how, I’ll probably be alone forever. I’m fucking up something good because I can’t hack being alive. Urgh.

Happy Valentine’s I guess.


Filed under bad day, bpd, coping strategies, fuck, life, rant, recovery, rubbish


There’s a really annoying boy in my bed right now. The sort of boy that turns up at 6am, drunk, to tell you he misses you then ask you to be his “plus one” at his work Christmas party. I think this is a little bit ridiculous. I mean, its not entirely his fault seeing as I’m totally buff and super amazing, but still, why can’t people fucking chill? Seeing as I haven’t slept at all and he is now sleeping like a really tired, hungover person, I thought I’d catch up on some blogging.

To be honest, I’ve not been blogging much recently, in the reading and posting capacity. It’s mostly because I’m actually doing ok right now. I have my moments, but I’m spending a lot of time with my friends, boys, the Fam, at uni etc. so I am actually busy. I’ve gone from never busy to often busy. And I’m enjoying it. I really like my friends at the moment, a few in particular, and I’m getting my confidence on again so I’m actually talking to people. People are so good. Sometimes you forget, but remembering again is fun.

I’m still under the HTT, which I guess is good because I still have my unstable moments, especially when there’s any contact with the Ex. I literally cannot hack him. He completely ruins anything that makes me feel happy. I know that sounds dark, but he makes me feel so horrible. Like, I spoke to him the other day and ended up crying in Tottenham Court Road, spending £30 on stationary and buying darker hair dye purely because he likes my hair lighter, then getting home, crying, dying my hair and painting my nails black because I was angry and shouting at everyone I spoke to and self injuring. That boy has a lot to answer for when it comes to my mood. He fucks me up so much I swear. And I hate that I miss him. Cunt. And generally I’m not so rude about people. Well I am, but in a lolz way, not a serious way. This is a serious way. Still, he’s fading and I have people shaped distractions.

There is good news though. I’ve finally been seen by my new psychologist. It’s sad because I’m going to have to say goodbye to my super nang therapist who I love and actually sometimes trust, to be replaced by some next woman I don’t even know. The Psychologist is still seeing me weekly right now, but probably not for long. He wants me to write him a goodbye letter, and he will write me one and then we’ll read them to each other. All sounds a little bit too cringe for me really. I’m not sure I’m up to that challenge. I guess I’ll have to give it a go, but I so badly don’t want to :(. Plus I don’t want to say goodbye to the Psychologist because I love him so much. I hate it when people go. I’ll probably cry and look like a dick, but what can you do? I have to be ok moving on to some new therapist who might suck out and I might hate and might be really horrible. I hope she’s not, but who the fuck knows? Soon there’ll be a new the Psychologist and I just have to deal with it.

Still, this change means I no longer have to attend stupid coping stupid skills group. I hated coping skills group so much it’s ridiculous. Seriously. All the way in fucking Essex. So much travel for so little gain I swear. Plus I didn’t like the facilitator that much because she was too loud and in your face and the people in the group we’re all a lot older than me and no where near as logical and scientific thinking, so what I told them didn’t really resonate and vice versa. I don’t say that like their thinking was bad, it just wasn’t at all like mine and it made it hard to feel comfortable. Maybe that’s just me trying to rationalise my own prangs, but it is how I feel. It’s fine though because I never have to go again, which is a huge fucking relief.

But anyway, I still haven’t finished being assessed by IMPART yet. Apparently there’s only one left, but who the fuck knows really. There have been so many assessments you couldn’t imagine. In the whole process, I gained another diagnosis – panic disorder. Gotta catch ’em all in NHS mental health service. Really annoying, but I guess I already had it and now it just has a name.

I’ve been pretty open about my mental health with the sleeping boy seeing as I can’t go out in the dark by myself and he lives about 2 mins from my psychiatric hospital, but he has some pretty wafty ideas about mental health. He’s anti-medications and thinks that treatment doesn’t work and talking therapies fuck you up more and you shouldn’t have them. I didn’t really want to smash his opinions down with scientific research, statistics and generally knowing what I’m talking about because he’s only 20 and I didn’t want to be rude, but I’m sorry what the fuck? Suicide is the biggest killer of men under 25, anorexia the biggest killer of women under 25, people with psychotic disorders really fucking need their medications to stay stable, as do many people with other problems. It really bugs me. I spend so much of my life surrounded by people who either do or try to understand mental health, I forget sometimes how much people opinions can differ and be based on negative stereotypes. Still, at least he’s not rude about my mental health which I appreciate and he does try to get it. Jeez I’m such an over-sharer. He is a bed teef though, which makes him supes annoying.

Blah anyway I’m babbling away, losing my point. Standard though. This is what happens when you don’t plan your blog posts properly. I really should get some sort of structure to my blog. Except I can’t be fucked really. Maybe I’ll do it sometime. It really doesn’t help that I literally haven’t slept at all. No amount of sedatives stops insomnia anymore. Annoying.

The most important thing to mention in this post is the absolute brilliance that is ADVENT!!!! Which means advent calendars and lots of alcohol and festive spirit and mince pies and fun times and everyone is happy and it’s my favourite time of year. I love December. I love Christmas. I love winter. So much. I’m so excited and hyped all the time. Yesterday, me and almost all my S named ladies went to the Southbank Winter Festival to drink mulled wine for advent and it was so fun. Plus really pretty. The Southbank looks beautiful and festive. There’s this igloo outside the Hayward gallery which is literally so cute and pretty. And a bicycle powered light up tree. And so much good food. I had the world’s tastiest lamb burger with harissa and garlic mayo and it was so good. It might not actually have been the worlds best – that may well be the mulled wine and festive cheer talking. It was really good though. So good I could literally smell how bad my breath was and didn’t even care. I ended up getting pretty drunk, but not too drunk. Siblets on the other hand…. Well…

So anyway, I should probably try sleep if I can. Plus this massively horrible, seriously racist and really fucking irritating woman just showed up at my door (unannounced) and I have to rescue the Ma from her because none of us can stand her. Daughterly duty and all.

Here’s the igloo:

20121202-223324.jpgAnd inside the igloo:20121202-223549.jpg

And a festive London Eye:




Filed under bpd, coping strategies, general, home treatment team, IMPART, NHS, recovery, shopping, therapy, university

crazy 24 hours.

Last night was really bad. I tried to distract myself, but it didn’t work for long.

I duno what flipped in me, but I flipped and got really agitated and distressed. I wound up on the phone to the HTT at midnight or summin with a bottle of aspirin and the full intent to die. Because they’re in and out of A&E at night, they had bad signal and promised to call me back in 10 minutes. It took me about 3 minutes to decide I couldn’t just sit, so I self-harmed pretty badly down my already gnawed up arms. Nothing that needed A&E, only steri-strips. That lasted about 45 minutes till I called them back again and there was no answer. So I then called the Crisis line, which was also useless and just burst into tears until they found someone to connect me to. He talked to me for about 45 minutes and persuaded me that yes I should take my meds rather than try to hoard them and I calmed a little, but still felt unsafe.

I got the Brother to come and sit with me. I told him how I felt honestly, even that I wanted to just die because it all burnt so much. I think that was brave of me. He made me some apple squash, put on Time Trumpet and watched it in bed with me and Afiq (my teddy). I even took my zopiclone, though it didn’t work so well. We got through the whole season before I felt sleepy, but he left me falling asleep to the Armando Iannucci Shows. The Brother was good and picked things that made me giggle and lifted my mood up a lot. He looks after me better than anyone else in the world. He doesn’t cry or tell me how he doesn’t understand or ask questions. He accepts it and goes “Right – let’s do something nice together right this second. For as long as it takes.” I need that when I’m feeling so desperately lost and low. I can’t find a way out myself, so asking me anything and expecting positive outcomes is ridiculous because I can’t find the answers.

I woke up not too drowsy and a little bit more hungry than I have been the past few days. I think the initial side effects of the zopiclone are wearing off a bit now. I was able to eat breakfast, a cookie and a big lunch, though I feel too sick to eat right now so I duno how dinner will fare up. I was in a foul mood though. I was angry. Like really angry. I was fuming at the HTT for not making it better and not taking me seriously. Sometimes I think I should just kill myself so people will finally believe I’m not making all this up. I get paranoid that everyone thinks I make it up so they don’t listen to me or take anything I say seriously. Then I start to think that I am making it all up and I’m fine, so I need to make myself less ok. Then I realise I’m not ok in the first place if I’m thinking of doing serious harm in order to get other people and myself to believe me. It’s a cycle of thought with no clear exit. Anyway, I was planning on shouting at them and telling them that they don’t care and don’t listen and don’t understand, but I managed to keep myself marginally acceptable when they came. I was argumentative and rude (which I regret), but I didn’t tell them how much I fucking hate them or anything. I don’t even hate them. I just felt like they didn’t care, which made me hate them at that moment in time.

Keeping my anger in didn’t last long though. I’ve been getting angry lately that the Pa wants to walk Juno all the time. We share care for her. He gives her breakfast and a quick morning walk, I give her a long daytime walk and lunch, the Ma feeds her dinner and the Pa gives her a quick evening walk. This works out well for me because generally, I’m home alone during the days, so I can walk her whenever and we get lots of bonding time. Granted, now the clocks have gone back, the walks will literally have to be earlier, but I have trouble motivating myself to do anything for hours once I wake up so I generally walk her between 3-6pm (now it’ll have to be 2-4pm. Fucking daylight savings). The Pa has some time off work because it’s half-term for the Ma and it was Eid on Friday so she had that off too. He’s kept asking me if he could walk her or saying “I’m thinking about walking Juno now” at like 1pm, whilst I’m probably still in pajamas. I’ve got it into my head that he hates that she’s not his dog and his dog only. I think he’s trying to steal her from me. My walks with Juno are one of my favorite parts of the day because I have music and my pup and autumnal weather, so this has been really getting to me. Juno looks after me and I love her and I don’t want her to stop loving me (some next level abandonment issues. I mean, come one – She’s a dog. She loves everyone). Anyway, I went downstairs to give her a hug and she ignored me calling and just sat by the Pa. Now I know she’s a dog and has no bad intentions, but this really really hurt me anyway. I then told the Pa he could walk her and he’d won and he’d got her all to himself now. I then ran upstairs and started hitting and biting and ripping etc. Obviously I had to go upstairs because I didn’t want Juno to feel stress in the household as it would upset her.

Anyway, the Brother came to talk to me and suddenly I was devastated. I was crying about how no one loved me and the Pa had stolen my dog from me and I had no one to care for me and even my dog can’t love me and blah blah blah. I was angry and devastated and confused. Mostly, I was just way too emotional. The Pa came into my room and I shouted and cursed and cried some more. Standard. He told me to just hug my puppy, but I told him she doesn’t love me anymore and I didn’t want to be rejected again etc. You know the drill. So I told him off, cried, and kicked him out my room. He threatened to send Juno to Battersea because he “doesn’t want a dog to tear a family apart” (which I think is a bit dramatic, but I know I was being dramatic too). I told him that I love her too much to let her go. It was a bit of a scene.

Once left alone to my own devices, feeling like death and wanting to self-harm, I checked the Daily Puppy (I know I keep going on about it, but still), just to see whether they’d accepted or rejected her. I did not expect to see my beautiful Juno staring at me as the puppy of the day 27th October 2012! All of a sudden, my mood changed entirely. I was ecstatic. I called the Pa and ran downstairs with my laptop to show him. I read all the comments, told everyone how many biscuits she had, started scouring twitter for all the Juno related tweets, ‘liked’ the Daily Puppy facebook page and shared their picture of Juno and commented on it and linked her profile on my page and was just really happy. As of right now, over 1,000 people on Facebook have ‘liked’ her picture and 54 have shared it, she has 1,611 biscuits and 52 comments on her Daily Puppy page. People are even putting her on Pintrest. I got major excitement. Bouncing off the walls excitement. We went on an extra long hour and a bit walk today so I could show my whole neighbourhood the puppy of the day. She’s a local celebrity, even though no one recognised her. I’m generally not someone to show off their pets like this, but with Juno I just feel so compelled. She’s too adorable.

Suddenly, I love everyone and everything and today is fantastic and I complied with the HTT treatment and took my medications in front of them. I promised I’d call again if I have another minor crisis or need to self-harm again tonight. The CMHT Psychiatrist (who will, at some point, be just the Psychiatrist, but I’m taking a transition period to not confuse people) emailed me this morning and told me I should go to the local Community Drug and Alcohol Team (CDAT) for help with my Valium issues. I emailed him back to tell him it was stupid this morning. I already have four teams involved in my care – adding another seems a bit much and a bit confusing. IMPART + CMHT + EDU + HTT + CDAT = waaaay to many acronyms. Plus, I’ve already been working on it myself to get off it. Then this evening I talked to the HTT about it and now I’m going to go tomorrow. I have to be there at 9:30am to get seen quickly as they only offer drop in sessions and the later you get there, the longer the wait, which sucks, but they’re in the same building as the HTT so I can kill two birds with one stone in that trip. Plus an extra hours walk is an extra hours worth of headphones so it’s not so bad. Still, at least group is cancelled this week so I don’t have that to cope with as well as all this other treatment malarky.

What is rubbish though is that, with the HTT coming twice a day (due to my tablet hoarding compulsions), I had to miss dog training today. The Pa can show me it all tomorrow so I can catch up, but I hate missing it, but it’s only one class and its session two, which is the same one I saw when I visited the group to see if it’d be good for Juno. I reckon I can figure it out better with the HTT by this time next week (if they’re even still seeing me twice daily. To be fair, if they are, I’d prefer them to come evenings anyway because I can’t got out in the dark as it is, but I can get them to come earlier).

This might sound all positive, but I’m not sure it is. Right now, I’m less excited. More lonely and sad. That’s probably because I just had some Valium though. The problem is, as I’m lowering my Valium intake or as more life stresses build up (having to repay my Professional Careers Development Loan, broke without a job for instance), my personal life gets more complicated and painful or my duloxetine needs to be upped or for whatever mixture of reasons, my emotions are becoming increasingly volatile. Both in a good, and bad way, they are getting more and more intense. More and more difficult to manage.

I’m getting more obsessive over little things too. Right now, I’m obsessively trying to decide between an iPhone 5 or a Galaxy SIII. I’m also obsessing over the Daily Puppy thing. It’s not like I mind being obsessive, but I find it hard to do anything else. Especially the things I need to do (like sort out how to pay off this loan and try to change my student bank account to Co-op so all my accounts are in one bank, thus easier to manage and getting the Psychiatrist to sort out my freedom pass etc.). I look over the same webpages again and again and I can’t not do it. Everything else becomes secondary to whatever I’m obsessing over. I’m also starting to get hyped up about my iPad 4 turning up (I had a major breakdown in Sainsbury’s, so even though it was against store policy, they gave me a refund so I pre-ordered the new one. Not a mini one though. I don’t want a mini one). I’m counting down days. Literally. It’s arriving on Friday and I cannot contain myself. Then on Monday I can upgrade my phone and well…. that’s its own minefield. These things cost money I shouldn’t spend, but I figure I can deal with it at some point in the future.

I’m also getting more irritable. Little things are triggering anger, rages and hate. Like the fact that it’s half term and the Fam are all around and I get irritated when they speak to me because this is my time and if they try to hard, I get angry and hate them. Of course, they are all trying too hard because the Psychologist told them about my increasing level of risk and stash of painkillers. I’m self-harming more and more, and it’s getting progressively worse. None of this is really that good. I’m not trying to stop it either. I don’t know how to and even if I did, I’m not sure I have the motivation for change. I’m acting as if I’m ready to change. I’m taking all the right steps and trying to do what I’m asked sometimes,  but if they don’t watch me take my meds, I hoard them. I’m not trying to cut down on self-harm. I’m not giving the HTT my stash of pills like they keep asking. I’m perfectly aware of the fact that it’s dangerous to have them there as I tend to act on impulse, but I want to keep that option open and I know that if I gave them away, I’d just buy more the same day and not tell them.

So I don’t know if I’m doing good or not. I don’t know if I’m being compliant with treatment or not. I don’t know what I want to get out of it or if I’m ready to change. I don’t even know if I even need help or not. If I’m acting or I really feel like this. I don’t know what to do or if I’m doing everything wrong.

All I know is that no one hears me screaming and I’m desperate to find a way of letting the whole world know how much my insides burn so that someone will understand and make it better. I don’t even think that’s possible.


Filed under CDAT, CMHT, home treatment team, IMPART, Juno, life, recovery

damage limitation.

I am literally so bored with the Queen. She’s a kinda tedious old lady. Plus I really don’t think that having all those boats was such an impressive deal. I was expecting really great, entertaining boats with funny statues on and stuff. Instead, it just seemed to be a lot of people rowing. Yet somehow, that was the only thing on the news from the moment I woke up this morning. Still, I won’t pretend I’m not jealous of those people who got Fortnum & Maison’s lunch at the Piccadilly street party. Though saying that, they did have to meet Prince Charles and sing the national anthem which I don’t think I would have handled with anything but contempt. Instead, I watched Charlotte’s Web, which is a terrible adaptation of a book I actually really like. Next up is Celebrity Deal or No Deal with McFly. Sunday’s should be better than this. Maybe I should change the channel. If I’m lucky, Come Dine With Me will be on. Come Dine With Me is always on. And I really don’t want to do any work. I worked all yesterday, and all it made me was angry. Researching the EDL makes me want to spit a little bit.

So anyway, I know I’ve been a bit of a moany moaner these past few weeks. I’ve been feeling pretty low and haven’t yet found a way to feel less low. So I continue to feel low and try to limit the damage. It’s not exactly ok, but I think I’ve got to start playing the damage limitation game to keep myself functioning. I keep doing things that I know will make me feel worse in the long run because it seems easier in the short-term. For once, none of this is about food, though I will admit one of these things is walking. So here are the tips I’m going to try to follow in order to keep myself as healthy and well as possible until I work out what I have to do to actually fix the things I’m finding overwhelming and painful. None of this is exactly a long-term fix, and some of it is purely avoidance strategies, but right now, I have to do something.

  • Don’t drink alcohol or takes drugs. I know this sounds like an awful, no fun Ellie idea, but I actually think that this might be necessary. In fact, it’s this point which is my main reason for posting this – other people knowing about it might mean they’ll help me to not get trashed. Every time I let myself give a little, I end up completely trashed. Even if I’m positive I won’t. And it’s basically every time I see anyone. I know I’m using it to be less self-conscious, but I need to keep that level of self-conscious to not hate myself entirely for days and days. It stays with me and it’s all I can think about. I hate the person I am when I let my intense amount of self-policing and anxiety lessen slightly. I hate it and it makes me feel horrible. It makes me hate seeing my friends. Thing is, I know I’ll probably give up on this as soon as someone offers me a drink. But on some level, I know it’s not actually worth it. And it’s not forever, its temporary management of my mental health. It used to be worth it. I think I just more time to look after my brain rather than frazzle it a couple of times a week. We’ll see. I predict failure I won’t lie.
  • Keep myself in situations I feel safe in. This basically involves staying the fuck away from anything I know I’ll find stressful. I have real problems with social things and I know that, in general, I’m going to have to work on this. Thing is, I’ve been trying. I’ve been putting myself in situations I know will be hard for me, with people who I feel particularly judged and disliked by in the hope that I’ll get over my hang-ups eventually. Well apparently I’m not getting over it any time soon and it’s making me feel awful. People are so difficult and all I can do for days and days is go over exactly what I did wrong and why evenyone will hate me now. I always just dissociate from the situation. I don’t feel in control and all I feel after is shame. And I really don’t cope well with any of this. So safety first. I don’t want to isolate myself entirely, but maybe it’d be better to keep my socializing within small groups of people I know pretty well. Stay away from scenarios in which my brain panics and I stop being able to keep track of what’s happening. Sometimes that happens with people I know well, but I think fully isolating myself is only going to make matters worse.
  • Use my support systems. Use the support offered from the CMHT, even if I don’t think it’ll help. Maybe it will. Call Samaritans if I need to. Call my friends. Speak to my family. Other people can help diffuse the moment. They might not be able to fix the problem, but if they can help me get out of destructive cycles, maybe it’s worth it. They might all judge me and think I’m awful and dramatic and lying, but I think there’s a net gain as when I’m left to my own devices, I start getting worked up and fast headed and panic.
  • Look after myself. When I’m start feeling bad, I let my routines and self-care slide a bit. I’m going to try to keep on top of this. Shower, wash my face, tone, moisturize, put on comfy, but still socially acceptable clothing, take my medications, chew as much nicotine gum as I could possibly want, get out the house every day, eat enough and eat regularly (with lots of good, nutritious food), don’t skip out on yoga etc.. All of these things make me feel physically better and if I do the things that make me feel physically better, I’ll give myself fewer reasons to feel mentally worse. All these little things build up and once I let one slide, others start sliding. If I don’t leave the house, I might not bother wearing nice clothes, so might not bother properly looking after my skin, so don’t bother with my acne medications, etc. Keeping on top of it will only help.
  • Minimise repercussions of SI. Obviously working on stopping is the way forward, especially as recently this has been getting more of a problem again. This involves spending a pretty hefty amount of money, but I think will be worth it. For me, this means, good wound care and good scar care. It’s worth spending extra, and the effort and expense are deterrents. Menolin pads, microporous tape, steri-strips, Savlon Advanced Healing Gel (I swear by this product), Savlon Wound Wash, gauze, TCP, Duo Derm (I swear by this too) and crepe bandages for the immediate care. Bio oil, vitamin E squeezed out of its capsules, heavy-duty foundation, concealer and powder, a little bottle of Elnette and a good foundation brush for scar reduction and speedier fading. All these products cost the earth. Seriously. But worth it if I can actually get my body out at some point over summer. And I’m doing good at SI reduction right now – 10 days free so far, so maybe I won’t have to buy much more.
  • Journal. Whenever I start having a worse time, I start journaling less. This doesn’t mean I write less though. Instead of giving myself specific journal time, I start catching parts of my day. I’ll stop halfway through something to scribble a couple of paragraphs on nearby bits of paper. All that I end up with is a pile of incoherent babble that doesn’t help me work through my emotions, but rather records a whole load of desperation without any insight. When I’m feeling more stable (which unfortunately corresponds well with eating less, so most of my journals from the past few years are pretty one track minded), I journal every day, right now, with my general mood, plus alcohol and drugs thrown in to the mix (I tend to journal at night), I’m lucky if I make time twice a week. Making the time will help me work out my emotions and hopefully give me a better idea of the what I’m actually finding so difficult.
  • Keep walks to an hour or less. Going for an emotional stomp is pretty much a necessity in my life. It’s not just for the calorie burn, although that does play a part in it. It’s mostly an escape. It’s better when I run, but I’m still not sure I can do that too much without consequences. I love running, but every time I try I start to obsess and beat myself up for not going far/fast enough because I don’t feel I’ve pushed myself enough. This has left me kinda scared of it. Even though a 15 minute run would be the same as an hour walk in terms of stress busting, that’s not enough. I duno. Walking isn’t the same though – I’m already good at it and I don’t get the same almighty rush so it’s less addictive. Maybe I should start doing mini runs to save time. I duno. The point isn’t about what exercise I should or shouldn’t introduce, but the fact that I heavily rely on physical outlets for difficult emotions. Getting a good stomp on is an avoidance strategy, but it’s one that works and is a lot less harmful psychologically and physically than SI or restriction, as long as I keep it low intensity or relatively short. My body is strong enough to handle it without doing damage and I’m not losing weight. Just as long as I keep it to more reasonable timeframes. Once we start hitting the three-hour of walking mark, I get blisters and my joints ache. It’s not worth it.
  • Take some days off of work. I probably work too much and my deadline is in September, so I have time to take a day or two off each week, or even just having light work days. Rather than stressing myself out constantly because I’m not getting enough done due to my difficulty concentrating, so working pretty constantly and giving myself no chance to recharge, stepping back sometimes. Today, I am recharging. No work. At all.
  • Do something nice for myself every day. Be it a nice bath if I can manage it, painting my nails, spending time doing something pointlessly crafty, making some special food, buying myself a cheap present. Whatevz. Just one nice thing a day will probably do me the world of good. I often forget. This will actually be really hard. I tend to treat myself pretty awfully sometimes.
  • Stay away from confusing people. I’ll probably fail at this one.
  • Get that piercing. I’ve been wanting it for ages and it’ll make me feel better. On my list of things I like about my physical appearance, my piercings are number two. It’ll only give me more to like.

So there you have it, my list of damage limitation ideas. It doesn’t address the problems, but it’s caring for myself enough to get through this difficult bit and hope I’ll be able to find ways to actually deal with it soon. A lot of it is avoidance, but the kind of avoidance I hope leads to me treating myself a little better and putting myself in situations I feel safer in. It’s not a perfect and it might not work, but right now I kinda feel like I’m making things worse and just ruining any chance I have of feeling better. So I’m hoping this’ll lead to a more manageable set of emotions rather than giving myself reasons and opportunities to freak out. We’ll see. What do you think? Do you reckon any of these are really bad ideas? Or do you have any to add to the list? I’d like a couple of opinions please.


Filed under general, recovery

other people.

I know people in general seem to really like being hot and in the sun. I am not one of them though. This heat is awful. I could not sleep for being too hot. There are only so many clothes you can take off. I perpetually look like trash, but how else can you even dress when it’s this hot? Now the long count down till autumn begins. It really is a long count down too. So many months. Still, I do get to study in the garden and I guess that’s a little bit nice. Work on my tan lolz (for those of you that don’t know me, I’m dedicated to the paley cause. Factor 50 sunscreen? Yes please). I’m not destined for hot weather. Give me autumnal layering any day.

I went out last night and got hideously drunk.  So drunk in fact, I’m not sure I had that much fun. I don’t think I didn’t have fun. I defos had a bit of fun, but I don’t think it was constant. I duno. I was an idiot though because I was drunk and now it’s all I can think about. I think about things I said or did and I get so angry at myself and just want to cry. I hate it as well because at one point in the night, I suddenly realised that I was rubbish and no one liked me and then got really sad and self-conscious in a drunk way, but couldn’t go home because it was dark and I had to wait for someone to walk me. I honestly wish I hadn’t gone, which is sad really because I like my friends and enjoy seeing them. It gets really difficult to see other people because I always fail to behave the right way and I fuck everything up. It’s ok to do that when no one else sees, but the things people must think of me… It all makes me feel ill. Really really ill. And I just hate myself for it. Sometimes I think I shouldn’t drink because I always get really drunk, but it makes me more able to have a conversation with anyone and if I don’t talk enough, I’d still be getting everything wrong. Plus I get all of this when I stay sober too and I know that.

There seems to be a pattern in all of this. What happens is I see people. Generally I get way too trashed, which is great at the time, but I always regret. I end up doing or saying things wrong and being a massive idiot. After the event, I think back to it and realise I had no control over what I was doing and wasn’t really me and wasn’t really present. I then feel like everyone must think I’m a joke and a bad person and stupid and they’ll laugh and never want to see me again. I get so upset and angry with myself that I feel sick. I then resolve to never talk to anyone again because feeling like this is way worse than being isolated. It lasts for days, sometimes weeks. It’s not like, a little bit sad, but more like everything gets fast and I can’t make sense of anything or do anything other than hurt and feel overwhelming shame. I start to think that being social just isn’t worth the fall out. I’ll maybe send a group text to everyone, apologising for being awful, then I’ll start isolating myself. This isolation can last anything up to a month, though I will make a few dramatic attempts to make sure people haven’t gone in that time because I get scared they’ll leave forever. Then I get lonely. I start to think that maybe this time I’ll be difference and I can make it ok. That maybe people won’t just think I’m a dick. So I start making tentative steps, replying to texts, calling people etc. That builds until I see people, then it’s back to square one.

Does everyone feel like this? Are most people ashamed when they talk to people? Do most people spend so much time hurting because they believe everyone thinks they’re boring/an idiot/ugly/stupid/inappropriate etc.? Do most people believe that their only spoken to or included out of pity?

I really don’t know what to do about this. It actually hurts me to have friends. I get like it with my family too. The worst is when I’m halfway through a sentence then realise I’m talking and have to just stop and leave. It’s not very nice and I don’t know how to make it better. In general, the fall out is getting worse each time. I don’t know if that’s causing me to feel worse in general, or because I feel worse in general, but it’s getting harder to pick myself back up again. I feel like there is no right action. I try really hard to make myself into something good. I’m a conscious effort. Yet it never ever works and I just end up devastated because whatever I change and attempt to fix isn’t enough. It’s just all for nothing. I do work really hard though. I just can’t seem to hide all the stuff that makes me awful. It’s like trying really hard to look nice with clothes and hair and make up and cosmetics – you’ll still look bad if you have an ugly face and there’ s shit all you can do about it. Except that applies equally to the inside stuff as well as the outside stuff. You can only work with what you have, and if all you have is awful, no amount of dressing it up can take that away.

I don’t just do this with people I care about either. I also do it about my university lecturers. My GP. My treatment team. Shop assistants. Basically anyone who sees me or hears me speak. It just hurts more the more I value the opinion of those involved.

All of this is accentuated by the fact I’m completely unsure of myself. I have no belief in myself so struggle having any facts. And I don’t mean “self-belief”, I mean just knowing anything about myself. I don’t really know what I like, what I look like, what I think, what I feel. Everything about me feels like a performance of a person, but none of it is actually true. I can honestly sit there and worry if I’m actually having a thought or whether I’m just trying to convince myself that I had that thought to trick myself into being a more convincing lie of what I want to be. This is particularly horrible when it happens about negative things because I start to freak out about why I could possibly want to believe negative things about myself and my life if they’re not true. I think I have “identity issues”. Basically, I’m convinced everything from my nail varnish to my mood isn’t actually me, but rather something I’m pretending to be because in reality, I don’t have a person. This means that every time I get it wrong, I’m being judged as awful not for something I am, but for getting the concept of personhood I’m trying to achieve. I’ve fucked up the fake reality I created in order to be a person. I can’t even get the things I create right, let alone whatever the fuck I am.

I know you’re supposed to try to challenge these sorts of beliefs. I know you’re supposed to learn to accept, and maybe even like, yourself enough to not constantly think your way into hurting. However, I get really reluctant about challenging any of this. To me, if I was to start to believe that maybe the way I am is ok and that maybe no one thinks all that much of it, I’d look like more of an idiot and be being so stupid that people would judge me more. In my mind, believing and acting like you are better than you are not only makes you a dick, but it also turns you into more of a joke than you already are. So because I’m convinced the beliefs I have now are true fact, I don’t want to change them because then I’d only be worse and people would only laugh about me more and I’d only be more of an idiot. Which doesn’t solve anything and I’d still be the boring/an idiot/ugly/stupid/inappropriate etc. one no one really likes that much. Except I’d be a fool for tricking myself. This thought process is part of the motivation behind this post – alerting people to the fact that I am aware that I was a complete waste of space yesterday, so they don’t think that I think that I’m fine. Heaven forbid.

So then the only options become to try harder because I’m obviously not trying hard enough if I don’t get it right, or give up entirely. I oscillate between the two. Perfectionism? Black and white thinking? I think it might be.

And the thing that’s really annoying about it is that chances are, no one even considers me. I literally never think “oh gosh. Such and such was a complete wasteman yesterday. I don’t think they’re worth much” so I doubt many people actually spend that long thinking like that about anyone. Everyone is was too absorbed with their own lives anyway to spend too long considering other people. Sure, you do think it in passing, but no one analyses all my actions like I do because really, I’m not that interesting to them. So anything I do is all just a bit of a waste of time. I’m probably forgotten anyway.

Also, the fact that I’m so concerned probably makes my actions and words even worse because I just can’t be relaxed.

So if seeing people makes you so angry at yourself you can’t think anymore, isolation makes you lonely, trying to be better always fails, changing beliefs can only make things worse, and all of it is entirely pointless, what are you supposed to do? I obsess over how others perceive me so much that it hurts me and there doesn’t seem to be a way out of it all. It’s purely lots of pointless thought cycles. It’s not at all about what other people do or say, it’s only my thoughts that are the issue. And I let it get to me so much that it really impacts my day-to-day functioning.

And see right now, all I’m thinking is “Well if you try hard enough, maybe you’ll eventually succeed at being better. Then you can believe you’re better because you will be. Then this will all be fixed. Stop fucking up for a second and maybe you can earn it.” It’s exhausting.

Not that I’d actually consider it, but it all makes me kinda miss restricting. Restriction is rubbish, but it’s really simple. You have a right thing and a wrong thing to do. There are clear outcomes. It’s predictable. And you don’t give a fuck about anything else so nothing else bothers you. Actually having enough cognitive ability to think about more than food  and weight changes everything. Suddenly, your whole world goes from simple to complicated and hard. I miss the simple. I don’t think the pay off is worth it though.

But there are positive things about yesterday.

1) I got a hair cut. It’s short and choppy and nice. I like it more because I have limp and lifeless hair, so long hair tend to look a bit lank on me. Plus I think short hair looks better on me. Statistics show that men think longer hair is more attractive in women, which scares me as I’ve probably made myself way more butterz to the entire male half of the population. I hope not though. I’m trying to ignore the fact that research would suggest my hair would now be considered uglier because I like my hair short. I used to have it really even shorter than this for lots of years and I thought it was good then. It makes me happy because I think short hair looks more like me. Then I dyed it brown. For the first time in over a year it does not look red. Yuss! Having the same hair for too long makes me antsy.

2) I got to dress up as trailer trash because it was so hot. I was really, really self-conscious. Especially when I actually saw people I know. But it is really fun to strut about in ripped fishnets, tiny denim shorts and cropped tops with your headphones blasting summery tracks and dancing down the road. I put on a personality and I enjoyed it for a little while.

3) I had the foresight to marinate some chicken so my dinner today was properly good. Jerk chicken and coconut rice. Om nom.

See! I’m not all dark and stormy nights. Just mostly.


Filed under life, recovery


So this is my sixth attempt at writing a blog post. I literally do have five other posts written and edited that I’m unable to publish.

I think I may have come to a bit of a stale mate with blogging. See, I really like blogging. I like the processes of writing things out for an audience because you get practical feedback, it shows you’re not the only one and, in trying to explain things, thought processes become clearer and it can help find the right course of action. I’ve found the whole process having a blog really useful and I’m not willing to give up entirely yet. Plus there are some nang bloggers I’d like to keep in this peculiar type of contact with.

Problem is, I just can’t. I can’t bring myself to actually publish anything, not for lack of pointless things to say, but because I don’t want anyone to have any sort of opinion on it. I’ve gotten very self-conscious over my internet self. And my actual self. Basically all selves. I can’t post the things I want to say because others might judge me and I’d rather not be judged. I don’t want anyone to have an opinon of me next time I see/type/speak to them. In the grand scheme of blogging, this makes it hard to post. It also makes it hard to comment because I’m pretty sure that anything I have to say will make everyone sigh and think “God, that idiot. Again. Jeez. Leave me alone.” I’ve got blogging anxiety.

I can relate this to my actual life too. I’m finding it increasingly difficult to talk to anyone. I’m deeply ashamed of any interaction I have because I think that every time I do interact with someone, they think I’m an idiot. Then I read into their responses or non-responses as them letting me know I’m an idiot and that they think less of me now. For example, if send a text and get no response, its because I’m infuriating and they have much better things to do then bother with me. I need them more than they need me and they know it and wish they didn’t have to speak to me because I get in the way. If they respond, it’s will hidden digs at me, letting me know that I’m annoying them just by contacting them because they don’t have the time for stupid me. This isn’t some sort of attempt to get you real peeps to treat me different though, because honestly, there is no way to interact with me which doesn’t end up with the same outcome.

A lot of this all comes down to the fact that actually, I’m managing to do remarkably awful right now. Not with food, but other things. Thing is, I can say or post things, but I have no right course of action and I really don’t think I’d be able to follow any practical feedback and honestly, if anyone feels the same way I do, they’d probably be having just as much difficulty trying to communicate it. Social stuff is all just feeding off other things that makes everything horrible and make me actually really scared. But I can’t talk about any of this. Because people might judge. They might think different of me. They might think I’m being too drama or annoying or I’m lying or boring or too difficult etc. And the more you build up all this, the more likely it is to actually happen.

So instead of talking to anyone (like I know I definitely should), I get more and more self-conscious and find it harder and harder to interact with anyone. Maybe this’ll prove the end off my blogging career. Or my social career more generally. I hope not.

Even though this is a little pointless, I’m going to publish this just to prove that I can still click that little blue button.


Filed under general, rant

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Filed under general, recovery

sometimes, you just need a good vent.

Recently, I feel like I’ve been making a decent amount of progress in my recovery. I don’t by any means feel like this is all fixed, but I think I’m doing ok and that parts of me are starting to get fixed. I feel like I’m starting to get the pay off for all this painful work I’ve been doing and it’s quite nice really. It does get less hard and less painful and sometimes you really notice.

However, this doesn’t mean it’s always easy now because it’s not. Although this isn’t exactly positive news, I think it kinda is. If it wasn’t for the times which make you want to curl up and die then you wouldn’t be able to see what aspects of recovery need more work. The psychologist wants me to be working on three issues with him – food, body image and self-esteem. Sometimes I think all of this is unnecessary because I’m obviously well now, but I guess the past few days have really highlighted some problems for me.

Yesterday was one of those days. It started badly and only continued that way I guess. Yoga was fully booked so my usual Sunday exercise wasn’t available to me, so the slow build of freaking out started. I decided pretty early on I was going to walk and did a little brisk walking almost straight away to make sure I was getting some in, but it didn’t feel like enough. Thankfully (or not. I duno really), a few of my friends were meeting for sunny times wine on the flats (for those of you without East London geography knowledge, the flats are like a huge bit of flat grassland in a part of Epping Forest which reaches into London) so I figured I could walk there and back to get in some more walking so I would be at least close to two hours for the day. I really know that my attitude here is not good, not by any means. I mean, I could easily get a bus there from outside my house, but I knew I wouldn’t go if I didn’t walk because I’d have to walk regardless, so it was either walk there or not go  so I could walk somewhere else (I cannot stress how much I know I have to work on this, but it just seems to be something I cannot do).

The problem with this is that the flats terrifies me. In my mind (and I also think this is actually true), any patch of green land in East London is pretty dangerous as they are prime places for attack. This is the PTSD speaking I know because I used to be totally fine with it, but these days I can’t step into Epping Forest alone without major panic and anxiety, so I avoid it. I love Epping Forest, but I’ve lost all my confidence within it. I can’t run there anymore, so any running I do has to be on streets only, I can’t go sit and read there in the sun, I can’t take shortcuts through it. The whole thing is too scary, even in the daylight.

But yesterday, anorexia trumped PTSD and I walked across the flats. My heart was racing, my head was spinning, my body tensed up, I practically ran across them, I blasted my happy playlist as loud as possible and I tried to pretend it wasn’t happening. I felt physically sick the whole time but I did it. Part of me is proud because I challenged my avoidance and felt like I was reclaiming a bit of my life, part of me feels stupid because I let the urge to exercise push me to do something I hate and found kinda traumatic. It was horrible in every way, but I managed it. I don’t really know how to feel about it. At least I had someone to walk me home though, so I didn’t have to go through the panic twice. I’ve done this sort of thing before though. I’ve gone walking in the dark because I haven’t walked at all that day in an effort to stay sedentary and ended up walking and crying and struggling to breathe. It’s ridiculous really, but I cannot tell if it’s good or bad for me. I feel like I’m just lining myself up to get hurt every time I do it and I feel like an idiot, but at least I walked.

I don’t really talk to my team about the walking issue. I probably should. It’s getting ridiculous. My feet and legs ache constantly because of the amount I’m doing everyday. And it’s building up slowly. Over time, it’s gone from a minimum of one hour, to a minimum of two and right now, it’s definitely closer to three on most days, if not more. I think my recent record is more like five. I’m literally wasting hours of my life away, but it doesn’t feel like exercise, so it never feels like enough. At least when I was really going for the calorie burn, there was a point where I felt like I’d done enough (albeit after more exercise than can possibly be good for you), but now I’ve never done enough. There’s always room for more walking because it’s not exercise so it doesn’t really count. The amount of time spent walking is pretty close to the amount of exercise I was doing in the depths of anorexia, but the intensity is so different that it doesn’t feel like it’s an issue. But it is exercise and it is an issue and I’m being an idiot.

On top of the stupid exercise thing, the social anxiety started to creep in whilst I was with my friends. I have mad paranoia about my voice. I hate it so much that it makes me want to cry. Yesterday was one of those days when my voice becomes something I fixate on then find talking something to be ashamed of. It built and built until I just wanted to stop all together. I don’t know if it’s noticeable when this starts happening to other people, but I notice the changes in myself. My voice starts to shift. It gets quieter, my answers shorter, my pitch higher, I start to lose my ability to articulate coherent sentences and instead chose to mumble key words in an effort to make my voice something less offensive. I’m still feeling the effects of this particular instance so I found it impossible to call my GP surgery today even though I need to get a repeat prescription.

I don’t really know how social anxiety works for most people, but for me, it goes one of two ways. Sometimes, I just don’t talk. I get twitchy and start fidgeting because I’m so tense, I can’t look anyone in the eye and I get painfully self-conscious and uncomfortable. Route two is the polar opposite. I start to dissociate from the situation and lose all control, so end up overcompensating for my anxiety by blabbering a lot and saying things I really shouldn’t, getting embarrassed and feeling like an idiot, which I then beat myself up for over the course of days. Yesterday was route two. I’m ashamed of myself for speaking at all. I shouldn’t have gone because everyone will think I’m an idiot.

Body image is also causing a problem. I know a lot of people with eating disorders don’t have the stereotypical body image problems, but I really do. I started dieting because I hate my body. I continued dieting because I continued to hate my body. I ended up severely ill because I hate my body. I don’t want to simplify it for those of you that don’t know much about eating disorders because there’s a lot more to it than that. It’s not some sort of vanity project spurred on by desire to look like great or anything as current research indicates that there are a lot of physiological adjustments within the brain caused by genetic bad luck and stimulated by starvation itself. For me, starvation makes me less anxious, helps detract from my depressive tendencies and makes some of the more distressing PTSD symptoms more manageable, but I narrate it all in terms of my body. It stopped being something I could just stop easily because eating led to fear, anxiety and panic. I wasn’t in control at all, but this fear and anxiety and panic was all directed towards my body image.

I feel like I’m genetically unlucky. I read about a lot of people with anorexia being naturally small and recovering to lovely, feminine bodies. I’m not like that. Like really not. I’ve never been small naturally. It’s hard work for me to be small. I had to really bloody try to even get my bmi to 20. I don’t have a nice figure and never have. I think it’s actually impossible for me to. I looked awful whilst underweight, but I didn’t look better at a healthy weight. I have always held my fat in bad places. I don’t get a waist, hips, a bum or breast. I have belly and thigh and that’s about it. Even when I was overweight, I never really got out of an A cup, so chances are I never will. The refeeding body is my natural body shape and I don’t think it’ll improve with time like it does for most people. I’ve always been this shape, whatever size or weight I am. I will always be this shape and there’s nothing I can do about it. Dumpy and boyish. I read about how people are so upset during early refeeding that their stomachs stick out more than their breast. Well mine always does, regardless of weight. I hate it and it makes me cry. I promised myself that I’d never let it get so bad again when I initially started to lose weight, and I’m back there now. My body does start to even out when I’m at really low weights. I look disgusting but at least I’m more even. I don’t want anyone to see me now. To be healthy, I have to go back to the thing I hate and have hated for as long as I can remember. I would fantasise about cutting my belly off with scissors during childhood, in my teens I’d dream of getting exotic diseases that’d put me in hospital because I just couldn’t eat and would get such a high temperature I’d be burning all my fat so I could come out and everyone would be amazed because I was small. There is nothing I can do to make my body something I find acceptable. It’s genetically rubbish. To be healthy, I have to be the body I find repulsive.

Then there’s the lingering food issues. I’m eating a whole load I know, but I’m not feeling quite so comfortable with it right now. I’m eating through it, but I’m struggling. Today, I didn’t weigh my cereal for the first time in about two years. It was terrifying and made me feel sick because I’m sure I had more than my acceptable amount. It was horrible, painful and has made me feel bloody disgusting. I feel like I’m eating disgusting amounts of everything bad right now. Too much cake and too much fat and too much chocolate and too much processed food and too many unknown calories and it’s in my mind all the time and I’m beginning to really hurt because of it. I hate eating like this. I don’t feel like I’m being healthy anymore. Argh. As I write this, I’m starving hungry and my belly aches, but I still don’t want to eat yet as I don’t think there’s been enough time between now and my last eat so I’ll just sit and ache and feel like I’m in control of my food intake. Even though it doesn’t really matter if I do or don’t in the long run because I’ll eat a lot today regardless then feel out of control and disgusting anyway.

Last night I just cried and cried like a moron. It’s all too much sometimes.

So now it’s all building up and I’m getting close (yet again) to deciding to hide away. I don’t want to speak to anyone. I don’t want to see anyone. I feel disgusting physically, I feel like an idiot when communicating with people. I just want to hide away in a tiny hole and never see anyone ever again. One of my bezzies is hosting a dinner party tonight, but I can’t go because they’ll be dinner and people and I’ll be expected to talk so people will physically hear me and I’ll say things that make people judge me and they’ll see me and know I’m disgusting and I’m not good enough for them. So tonight, I’m going to sit at home and probably have a rubbish time, but I just can’t be around people who are so much better than I am. I can’t continually put myself in situations where I feel like the perpetual other. I’m never the fun one or the pretty one or the interesting one or anything. I’m the other one. I’m the friend of the good ones, never the good one itself. And I don’t want to be that right now. Sometimes I think it’s better to stay out of people’s way and let them get on with being better than me without bringing them down.

All the things the psychologist wants me to work on definitely still need more work. I still think it’s better now than it was before, but I don’t think this is actually all ok now.

I’ll probably get through this mood in a few days. I just wanted to moan. So here’s my moan.


Filed under exercise, life, recovery


There is literally so much on my mind I think I’m about to explode.

None of it is food or exercise, but all of it makes food and exercise a problem.

“Panicking? Miss a snack and go for a walk with music blaring really loudly in your ears.”

“Uni work? Well you kinda want a new nose ring – why not walk to Walthamstow to pick one up. You can even dance home!”

Today I have walked for three hours. Fuck’s sake Ellie. Which meant I was conveniently out over a meal time. Same yesterday, Saturday, Friday….

Multiple walks a day. Big walks, little walks. Yes it is a stress-buster. It helps me mitigate the physical effects of anxiety and panic whilst giving me a change of scenery and a little thinking space. But I think this is getting a little extreme. Especially as my sleeping has just gone to shit all over again. Walking really helps me not engage in other destructive behaviours because I can stamp and jump and punch my thighs as I go to physically unravel in a less dangerous way. But it is getting to the point where it could sabotage other aspects of my life.

No sleep, lots of walking, missing food, incredible confusion and stress, a lot of negative emotions. It’s a recipe for disaster.  It makes me miss it. That feeling of empty whilst stomping about London. It’s a bit gross I know but I keep finding myself reminiscing about “that time I didn’t eat all day and went walking around for hours before my hair cut – I was so empty. My thoughts were so clear. I felt right.” etc. There are many examples. It’s actually really sick, but I can’t help it. Walking, and exercise more generally, on a starving body is something I can’t really describe, but I crave. It’s why I love running in the mornings – you can legitimately do it before breakfast. My brain makes some pretty hideous conclusions sometimes.

Honestly, what do people do when there minds are going one hundred miles a minute and they are freaking out? How do you cope when your body is reacting for you and tensing up all over, begging for some sort of relief?

I still think some things are going well. I’m making better food choices and have minimal food guilt and am eating regularly and most of my meal plan. I don’t think it’s that bad in general. I just cannot waste so much time walking and cannot justify missing bits here and there from my meal plan in the name of something definitely considered exercise.

Maybe I just need to talk. Sometimes I think I just need to talk things through with as many people as possible till the issues have run their course and I’m less in my own head. But I’m crap at talking because I never know who to ask and when. Maybe I just really need to see the psychologist. To be fair though, I think I need people who can be a little more judgemental than his job description allows. Real life people – see me soon!

Or maybe it’ll improve when the week is out. I have to meet with my study group tomorrow and have yet to really speak to anyone on my uni course so am shit scared. Plus I’m getting bone density scan anxiety (which is tomorrow). And family therapy this week. Plus a plethora of family celebration which will inevitably involve food are coming up in the next few weeks. Then there’s personal things coming to a head too. Urgh.

Someone just come and sit on me please. Just sit on me and don’t let me go anywhere. Multiple walks a day aren’t helping anyone. If I don’t walk, I’m home to eat and eating is fine.


Filed under exercise, life, rant, recovery