Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Irrational Betrayal

Last week the session with the serial killer was downright horrible.  We talked about something in depth that I have a huge amount of confused and conflicting feelings about - anger, sadness, massive guilt, distress etc etc.  Then she asked me a question that she knew I would find distressing and confusing.  A question that would make me question some of the things I thought I always knew about the past and some of the assumptions I had about the roles people had taken in the fuck up that was my childhood.  I sort of took a deep breath and started to cry when she said it.  I was just beginning to think about answering when she said, 'time's up now.'  I got very angry at her and told her she shouldn't ask things like that then throw me out leaving my head fucked.  She apologised but that didn't change the thoughts that bounced around my head.

It left me feeling very upset.  I felt like she just wanted to screw me over and then get rid of me.  I felt like I didn't trust her.  I was meant to see the cpn the next morning but I cancelled the appointment because I couldn't be arsed listening to her whine on about how busy she is and about her horse while telling me I just needed to develop some coping strategies.

That night I went to bed early because I was starting work at 5.30am.  At about 4am I found myself sitting in a dark industrial estate in my car with no idea either where I was or what I was doing there.  This isn't the first time I've done what I term nocturnal wanderings but it is always terrified.  I drove around for a while, trying to work out where I was, randomly turning corners until I found a signpost.  I was in Milton fucking Keynes for some reason.  I've no idea why.  I've never been there before, I don't know anyone there and I don't know anyone with any links there as far as I know.  I phoned work to tell them I wouldn't be in and drove home.  Thankfully I had my phone and purse with me so I could get home.

I thought about phoning the cpn but when this has happened before she's just shrugged it off.  Instead I texted D and she told me I had to buy a key safe to hide my car keys in every night or she would insist I left my car at hers.  Key safe has been purchased and so far so good although it did take me 45 minutes to remember that that was where my keys were and to find them before work on Monday.  It's a good thing I'm chronically early for everything so I wasn't late for work.

And on to the irrational and the betrayal.  On Monday for some stupid unknown reason I decided to google the serial killer.  I've done this before and all that usually comes up is her membership of various professional organisations and boring things like that.  However this time I found a planning permission submission to the council in her name and that of some man.  Being an idiot I googled him and it became clear that he was her partner.

This made me irrationally upset and angry.  So upset and angry that I didn't go to my session yesterday.  I didn't want to talk to her and I didn't want to tell her the reason that I didn't want to talk to her.  I feel that she has betrayed me.  How fucking stupid is that.  In many ways she takes up a massive amount of my head.  I spend hours thinking about what I'm going to discuss with her then going over and over what I actually do discuss with her.  Her presence in my life is much more than 50 minutes a week.  Its an ongoing, continual and in some ways defining presence.  This is clearly not the case with her.  I go home from a session with her with horribleness bouncing around my mind.  I spend hours trying to deal with it.  Last week it was particularly bad because of the stupid question she asked last thing in the session.  Now I know she goes home to her partner and lives a nice life.  I am nothing more than a professional engagement to her.  She is much more than me.  She has other people in her life that are more important than me.  How dare she.

I know this is a) very stupid and fuckwitted, b) completely irrational and c) horribly jealous and nasty but I feel like she's betrayed me with this man that I know nothing about.  Its confirmed to me that she knows all the evil in my heart and soul and I know nothing about her.  It makes me angry because it makes me feel jealous and lonely and rejected and unimportant.  All things I know well.

I need to talk to her about it but I'm mortified and I don't even know if I can have the conversation.  How stupid will I sound.  'Sorry I didn't turn up last week but I was angry because you have a life.'  I just don't want her to exist without me.  That feels pitiful.

I'm sure other people must have experienced something like this.  Surely I can't be the only complete idiot in the world.  But I can't explain how much this bothers me.  I feel like I an no longer trust her.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Crushed

I feel like I've been crushed at the moment.  All the me has disappeared leaving a shadow whose only outward sign is darkness.  There is no specific trigger.  There is just many sadnesses creeping around each other.

Two friends have died in the last few weeks.  Both guys I worked with.  One was unwell, the other died suddenly in his sleep.  I have been to the funeral of one, I am waiting to hear when the other one is.  Clearly this is stressful.  Clearly this is very sad.  Clearly it isn't my fault.  My mind tells me it is.  For so many years now I have wished to be dead.  Sometimes that is a miasma of wish in the back of my head, sometimes it is a compulsion.  And yet I am alive.  That should not be.  They should be alive.  The second friend who died left two young children, the youngest only six months.  He will never remember his dad.  That is a tragedy.  If I was dead, some people would mourn for a while but it would be over.

I finally saw the cpn.  The discharge has been delayed.  I still feel abandoned, cast off, uncared for.  I am just a number to be deleted from some spreadsheet.  I feel that I acutely need her help but I can no longer ask for it.

The serial killer is wanting me to talk about things.  I tried on Tuesday and I haven't slept for more than a couple of hours since.  The creeping awfulness of my experiences overwhelm me.  I cannot function.

I have stopped going to work.  I try not to leave the house.  I don't wash.  I don't clean my teeth.  I eat chocolate and toast occasionally.  I live in filthy jammies.  I disgust myself.  But I feel too crushed to change anything.  I am too flattened to even attempt to move forward.  Even the idea of texting a friend is too much.

This needs to change.  I can't continue like this.  I don't want to.  But I can't find my way out.

Sunday, June 08, 2014

The Loss of Hope

It seems to be incredibly easy to lose hope.  To feel unwanted and rejected.  To want to give up.  To hear Notgod bothering you at high volume all the time.  All it takes is one appointment with a psychiatrist.

What happened when I saw Dr Perky has completely undermined me.  The madness has grown in me exponentially in the last ten days.  I can feel the me part of me slipping away.  All that is left is the madness.

What can I do?  I texted the cpn last Monday.  She hasn't replied.  She clearly wants rid of me.  I phoned the local madness helpline.  They told me they couldn't help and I should phone the crisis team.  I am waiting for them to call me back and tell me to try and distract myself with a cup of tea and a nice bath.  I have been trying to distract myself for days.  I have reached the end of my ability to do so.  I am scared of them calling me back because 90% of the time talking to them makes me feel worse.  But there is nowhere else to turn.

The desire to self destruct is enormous.  It is the only thought in my mind.  If I destruct then Notgod will stop screaming at me.  Then I will no longer be rejected.  Safety is impossible, dead isn't.

I can no longer pretend enough to go to work.  That is way beyond my ability.  Instead I'm sitting in my jammies desperate to no longer exist.  Why should I bother keeping trying to exist?  There is no hope.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Dr Perky

Today I had to see a new psychiatrist.  I've not seen one in a couple of years since nice psych left and they replaced him with stupid, ignorant locum.  I've named this one Dr Perky as she has one of these horribly perky, jolly hockey sticks names.  Why do certain names stick with certain characteristics in one's mind?  I don't want to name any specific names as I don't wish to offend but I've never met a Nigel who wasn't extremely straight laced etc.  Anyway this is a tangent and pointless.

Dr Perky was actually relatively perky which goes back to my previous hypothesis about names.  She could have presented Blue Peter or at least the psychiatric version of that.  I'm not sure what that would be called.  Suggestions on a postcard.

She asked the usual questions that they always ask to find out if you have the all important (to them) understanding of your madness.  I equivocated and told her I had good days and bad days.  I suppose that is true in that a good day is a day when I only think about suicide every 5 seconds as opposed to every 2 on a bad day.  A good day for me is not a good day for those in the world that are deemed normal.  She asked what I did on a bad day and I told her I stayed in the house and tried to ignore Notgod.  She asked me about him and I answered the socially acceptable answer of 'he is a manifestation of my self destructiveness that I separate from myself because I can't cope with it' which she accepted.  I didn't say what I wanted to say which was 'he's God and he ruins my life and I have to die.'  She asked me what Notgod wanted and I mentioned self immolation.  She didn't even know what that was which was disappointing.  I would have thought a psychiatrist would have known about the more interesting methods of suicide.  I wish I could feel less hide bound by social convention that means I act as the good patient instead of being honest.

We talked about sleep and I told her it was getting progressively worse and was my major concern.  She asked about my meds and she said she didn't want to change them.  Apparently my sleep problem is 'cognitive' rather than 'biological' so I just have to get on with it.  Frankly I don't give a fuck what the reason is, I just want to stop waking up dozens of times a night and feeling exhausted all day every day.  But apparently actually making people feel better is not part of Dr Perky's job.

We discussed how massively stressed I am about work at the moment and the impact my recent decision was going to have on me and how I was probably going to need additional support over the next few months.  Then she said that she wanted to discharge me.  I asked her why now as nothing was really better and things were going to get worse and she said, 'because then you'll be under someone else's budget.'  I argued that I wasn't ready for discharge, burst into tears and freaked out a bit.  She said they'd review it in a couple of months.  Because I'll be cured by then.  Hallefuckinglujah.

So there you go.  The current NHS mental health provision.  You're too expensive, too complicated, maybe just too articulate and they dump you.  It's not about how ill you are, how little you cope, how you spend every day in a desperate struggle to keep going.  It's about their fucking budget.  I don't matter, the accountants do.  They should just take me out and shoot me, that would be the cheapest way forward.  If I jumped in front of a lorry that would be their ideal scenario.

So now I feel horrific.  I know I'm going to meltdown which I can't afford to do workwise.  I feel like a fucking burden instead of a human being.  I should say that at least she'd been honest but then the reality is that she couldn't be anything else as their is no objective medical justification for her decision whatsoever.  It is entirely budgetary.

I'm going to have to fight this.  That requires energy.  I need to text the cpn and ask her for an appointment to discuss this but she didn't fight for me at the appointment and I don't trust her at the moment.  She just wants shot of me.  I think it's just that they don't like or value me and I don't deserve any help.

Friday, May 16, 2014

Collusion

I could have written a blog about how I failed at CBT (completely miserably and with the admission of the therapist that it wasn't for me) or about any of the myriad of things I meant to write about but the truth is I got side tracked by life (and Breaking Bad).  Fundamentally I'm a lazy bitch.

A couple of weeks ago I was driving to an appointment with the cpn.  As I drove along the road I saw a couple with a pram.  I remember the woman had red hair and she screamed as the man elbowed her.  I drove on.  When I got to the building I was ten minutes early and sat in the car having a fag.  As I got out of the car to go see the cpn, I saw the couple again.  As I walked along, he smacked her in the face, causing her to scream and fall on the floor.  He then walked off with the pram shouting at her as he went.

What could I have done?  Phoned the police.  Shouted at the man to stop.  Gone over to the woman to see if she was alright.

What did I do?  Nothing.  I tried to justify it in my head by saying I would have been late for my appointment, there were other people around who could have done something. etc etc.  What I actually did by doing nothing was collude in the man's behaviour.  By not reporting it, by not getting involved, by not checking to see she was alright, I didn't condemn the behaviour.  I allowed it to happen.  I colluded with it.  I walked past the injured man on the side of the road and wasn't the Good Samaritan.

I am disgusted with myself over this.  I think about the girl with the red hair a lot.  I think of the child who saw it.  I think of the man who did it.  I think of what I could have done.

Collusion is what I do.  It's what I always do.  Every time I see my family and share in the joined silent lie of our reality I collude with it.  By my silence I don't condemn, I don't tell the truth.  My silence means that I am a part of what happened and I take no responsibility for that part.

I no longer want to collude.  I want to tell my story.  I want to move forward, to go to the police, to stand up in court and be counted.  I am terrified of doing this but I want to.  I have told people I want to.  I have spoken to D, to Fr S, to the cpn and the serial killer.  I have even spoken to a friend who is a union rep to ask advice about how to manage this with work.

I know there will be consequences.  My sister and brother in law are bringing the kids down here for a week tomorrow.  In the back of my head there is the knowledge that if I go ahead, this may be the last time I see them.  I grieve that knowledge.  I don't want to upset people, I don't want harm to come to people but I want to live in honesty not lies.

I have to think a lot about the logistics of doing this.  I have looked for support from various places but have found nothing that will inform me how to do this correctly, what to expect from a practical point of view and all the rest of it.  I need to plan carefully.  I don't want to cause problems at work because of this so I have to wait til after the summer busy period so any related absence can be more easily accommodated.  I have to be practical.

I also have to work out the emotional reality about this.  What motivates me?  Yes, the desire to no longer live a lie, to no longer collude is strong but so is revenge, or vengeance.  What right have I to vengeance?  Does it solve anything?

This is going to be horribly complicated and distressing.  I don't even know if I will actually be able to do it.  But for the first time in my life I want to which is something new.

Anyone who is into praying, please pray for me.

Our Lady of Walsingham, pray for me.

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

Meaning

*** This post contains triggers***

For some reason, at the moment, I crave meaning to some of the events of my life.  I need to believe there is something not that makes things worthwhile but at least provides them with a meaning.  When I don't find a meaning my head strives to create one and that one tends to be a load of fucked up nonsense.

This month they fucked up my pay and left me short a four figured number.  This is a substantial amount of money for them to fuck up and it has caused me stress.  I have phoned them on maybe a dozen occasions and they have promised to sort it out in 24 hours, have the money in by close of day Monday and close of day Tuesday.  None of this has happened.  Now they say it will be in my account by close of business today.  I don't believe them.  This on it's own is not the end of the world but it is the 27th set of pay in the last 36 months that has been wrong and trying to sort the previous mess out has taken me eight months.

To a normal person the response would be something along the lines of, 'aren't the pay people at my work fucking useless.'  But that doesn't work for me.  That has no meaning.  My mind immediately goes to the point where I believe pay section are persecuting me because they want me to kill myself so they don't have to pay me at all anymore.  Now I'm aware that written down this looks like irrational paranoid bullshit but at least it has meaning.  Things are not happening randomly but because of a specific malign reason.

For some reason that I'm genuinely unsure about this incident has been on my mind the last couple of weeks.  When I say on my mind I don't mean that I occasionally think about it, I mean that my mind keeps revisiting it over and over from all the angles I can find.  I replay it constantly in my head.  Over and over again.  My mind cannot escape from it.  I think this is because I crave a meaning for what happened.  This doesn't mean that I think I'll find some consolation or some resolution for it, how can there be?  But an event as big as this has to mean something.

Maybe it isn't me it means something for.  Maybe it has meaning for one of the boys involved.  Maybe it's only meaning is the provision of masturbatory fantasy for them.  I don't want that to be the case.  Maybe it has caused one of them guilt and made them look at their life.  That would be a good meaning.  But I'll never know and speculation is useless.

At the moment all that massive event means to me is that I was utterly usable and disposable.  That is probably the reality and the true meaning but it seems so little for such a momentous event.  And it also results in my vulnerability, which I hate and which I wish I could deny, being the only meaning.  That is too painful to process.

Is searching for meaning pointless?  Is it just another means of beating myself up, torturing myself because of a reality I just can't handle?  Are some events just truly meaningless?  Is looking for meaning sidetracking me along an unhelpful road?  Would any meaning be enough?

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Two Sessions Later - Advice needed

Last week I started telephone CBT.  He seemed alright.  Had a west country accent so D has named him mutton chops which is as good a name for him as any.  I was very nervous but the whole thing was very introductory.  I told him a bit about myself and he told me about CBT, pretty much what I knew anyway but then I'm a mentalist geek.  I told him I didn't want to discuss the PTSD side of things as that was covered by the serial killer and he seemed to think that was fair enough.  I also said that because I have paradoxical anxiety things like mindfulness, relaxation exercises etc make me more anxious rather than less.

Last night we had our second session and I feel like I've been left reeling.  I spent most of the night in tears and as a result phoned in sick to work today which is very counterproductive.

He started of asking me what I thought was good about me.  I mentioned a few things and he seemed to agree then it all started going downhill.  First of all he argued with me for about twenty minutes that I should change my job.  I kept telling him all the reasons why that wasn't an option but he kept going on at me.  Eventually I said that changing my job wasn't going to happen and this discussion was somewhat pointless.

Then he asked me what resources I had that I could use to go to work more easily.  I said that I had reached the point where I had run out of resources and that was why I had been put in contact with him.  He then said that I did have the resources and that I needed to 'get a grip.'  That infuriated me but I felt that I couldn't say that to him because of the whole middle class niceness thing that I sometimes get.  I honestly thought that telling mental people to get a grip was a cliche of what stupid thoughtless people do and I was genuinely appalled to hear that phrase coming from a supposed trained professional.

He then asked what the problem at work was and I mentioned that I had asked for help over the last few months from management and it hadn't been forthcoming which was one of the reasons I felt so anxious.  He told me I should keep asking.  I said that when you banged your head against a brick wall over and over and it was still brick then there was no point in doing it anymore.  He said that the next time it might not be brick.  Personally I thought the definition of insanity was doing the same thing over and over again with the same result but apparently that's a good thing.

He then said that the length of time I'd been in therapy with the serial killer was 'nonsense' and he'd never heard of anyone being in therapy that long for PTSD and that he favoured a quick fix solution to stop me being a 'victim.'  I said that I didn't feel like a victim and I favoured what worked rather than what was fashionable.  He said that I was clearly trapped with a victim mentality and until I 'got a grip' (that phrase again) things wouldn't get better.  I had to stop thinking negatively and start moving on.  He asked me what moving on would feel like and I said that it would be working regularly and not having the past impinging on my life.  He asked how it impinged and I mentioned flashbacks and nightmares.  He said I should think positive thoughts about them and they'd go away.

By this time I was very upset.  I felt like he'd broken the boundaries about what was and wasn't up for discussion but I didn't know him well enough to challenge him.  I felt that he had clearly put me in the role of victim and then had lambasted me for a long time about how wrong it was to be in that role and if I just thought more positively I wouldn't be a victim anymore and everything would be magically alright.  However he didn't offer any concrete or positive methods or strategies on how to do this.  He just said 'you clearly manage it sometimes so you should be able to do it now.'  By this time it felt that he thought I was to be blamed for the current circumstances and if I just thought happy thoughts everything would magically be better.  So the battle I have fought all my life not to blame myself for everything has been forcefully been put back in my court (to mix a metaphor) and I found this incredibly distressing.

He then told me that I should try mindfulness.  I just said 'uh huh' because by this point the session had run on for almost an hour and a half and I felt completely emotionally battered and had nothing left to argue with him.

I agreed to an appointment next week but now I don't know.  I know I was extremely distressed by what he said and in fact I'm crying now thinking about it.  I don't know if it's him or CBT at fault.  It's the same issue I had with CBT 10 years ago and the reason I have avoided it up til now.  But I also feel that he was incredibly crass in what he said.  I texted D who has had CBT in the past for anxiety and has found it very useful.  She was of the opinion that it was him who was behaving inappropriately, that what had happened bore no resemblance to the CBT she had had, and that I should contact the Employee Assistance Programme and raise my concerns with them.  But I don't know where that leaves me.  I need some kind of help to get back to work but this has left me feeling worse about myself then I have in a long time and has dug up all sorts of old ghosts that I fundamentally don't have the energy to fight again.

So what should I do?  Should I offer him one more chance next week and see how it goes?  Should I just not answer the phone when he calls again?  Should I raise my concerns about his walking all over my clearly stated boundaries, blaming me, pissing all over my therapy with the serial killer with him? Should I phone the EAP and raise my concerns?  Or should I just give up on CBT as the load of old bollocks I tend to think it is and try, magically, to get the resources myself to sort out my problems going to work?  All I know is that going backwards, which is where I feel I am at the moment, is not an option.