As much as I feel my new soon to be old therapist ‘gets’ me more than other’s I’ve had perviously I still faced a worrying moment when I explained how I felt and was met by a very confused look.

This was in the midst of a the worst depressive mood I’d had since I started seeing him. It seems to be similar, people seem OK with the not so bad bad moods but when I slide into the abyss they can’t seem to conceptualise it.

I was trying to explain I felt blank, I felt dead inside, I felt unable to feel. This has been a big problem for me and I am convinced it is to do with my meds but no one listens to me on that issue. I’d use the term ‘anhedonia’ but the poor guy didn’t know what I meant by ‘ambivalent’ (to be fair to the guy English isn’t his first language and perhaps that’s where some of the understanding problems stem from) . Though it goes beyond anhedonia, it’s not just an inability to feel pleasure it’s an inability to feel anything but a dull, gnawing numbness.

This is why this blog goes silent for so long; if I can’t feel anything I have no impetus to write , to do anything but lull about in a half catatonic state. I can’t THINK, I don’t have to words to describe how I feel because my brain won’t fucking work. There’s a line from a Bob Dylan song ‘Tomorrow is such a long time’ that goes

I can’t see my reflection in the waters
I can’t speak the sounds that show no pain
I can’t hear the echo of my footsteps
Or can’t remember the sound of my own name

whilst the song refers to being in love that inability to function at even a basic level is what I feel, but with more angst. I swear I do struggle to remember my name sometimes. It is so unbelievably frustrating, especially as someone who has constructed part of their identity around intelligence, when you’re shit at sport, not very popular but like reading it just sort of happens, “I might be a geek and a bit fat but at least I’m not stupid!”.

I’ve also been reading up (on my blackberry, in the dark, in bed when I can’t sleep and I wonder why my eyesight is so bad) about depression and I came across this article ‘Hard depression, Soft Bipolar” which seems to explain how I have been since I was about 11. It would certainly explain the tendency for me to ‘poop out’ on various drugs (I must be on no 3 or 4 by now and I’m still not really any better) and a million other things (I am never depressed ‘all the time’ but it comes and goes, often frighteningly quickly and intensely)  but alas the whole ‘not really recognised by most doctors’ bit gives me little hope.

 

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There’s an interesting twitter debate going on via @Rethink_ on what language to use for mental illness, those who suffer with it (do we suffer or what? ).

It is an interesting debate and I don’t think we should all be called ‘nutters’ ‘loonies’ etc. by the health service but what infuriates me more is all this ‘choice’ bollocks and being a ‘service user; blah blah disguising the fact that access to said services is piss poor. I don’t think ‘Ohh I can choose where I go (which was a choice between, somewhere near and somewhere far away so I like 90% of people chose the place nearest me, duh)  and I get a little password to go on a website, now I feel so much better about having to wait 6 months!’. It’s not that i dislike choice, I dislike the choice rhetoric being used to add a sense of false ’empowerment’ to patients/service users/clients/customers/frustrated people, choice being used as political ammunition and being held up as a beacon of wonder in the NHS when the real problems are glossed over.

I have had to wait months at a time for ‘talking therapies’, despite all my medical professionals knowing I have suicidal thoughts, self harm issues etc. and them professing to worry about me, acknowledge my treatment isn’t working at really. That is normal, I know of someone who still had to go private for counselling after being hospitalised for a suicide attempt. Not that it’s the Drs fault, all they can do is refer and guess at how long it’ll take.

Someone could call me Fartarsewankerscumbitch or whatever and as long as I could be assured of some care being accessible when I need and for as long as a I need it; I swear half my problems come from being left high and dry after my allotted number of therapy sessions are through regardless of how I feel. Knowing your treatment is for a set amount of time adds anxiety and pressure to be ‘O.K’ within the said time limit and an anxiety about being left not O.K and having to go through the whole thing again in the future; which is less than productive when anxiety makes your depression worse. They say it’s a ‘revolving door’ system, perhaps it is as I currently feel like I’m stuck in it going round and round like a silent screen comedy caper.

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I really should update more, writing is good therapy supposedly.

Anyway I have a new counsellor I’m more than halfway through my allotted 6 sessions of NHS time, which is apparently sufficient to sort out a whole life time of fucked uped ness. Budgetary concerns trump humanity.

My new counsellor is, quite frankly, a bit crazy. In a good way, I like him. He says I am intelligent and feel out of place because I do not buy into the ‘robotic’ nature of society, I resisit. Which is all very well but how do you deal with that when you do feel so out of place? When it feels like the world operates on a set of rules that are morally abhorrent to you? Add on always being picked on for being ‘the wierd kid’ (even by supposed friend’s in thier 20s who saw fit to chastise me for my choice of eco friendly washing powder and ethical bank, no wonder that friendship ended, badly.) feeling alienated and wondering if you’ve been put here by mistake. And a whole adolescence full of shit hitting various types of cooling devices.

I’m  not sure I’ll ever feel I fit in anywhere so the key is acceptance I suppose. I’m working on it, I’m trying to meditate again; very interesting when the voices in your head are ranting on at you, I’m beginning to worry if these are more than just an inner monologue and maybe I should be worried about it, especially when your inner monologue is telling you it’s god and you should ‘look at the bread’ (am I going even crazier or do I just have an overactive imagination and hypochondria, is it ok to have longer conversations with your inner monologue? can it even be a monologue if you converse with it?). Though on the plus side ‘god’ is nice to me not like the other inner monologue folks who seem hell bent on my self destruction. Maybe I should check my meds side effects again. Or maybe I’m just a hypochondriac with an overactive imagination. I’m trying to be more connected, more holistic.

My Grandmother, my last grandparents, died on Sunday. I was there. I have never seen anyone die before, it was oddly subdued. It was peacful which I am glad of but it just seems such an anti climax really, the way death is always seen as this big scary looming thing, not something which just happens so quietly and with little fuss. So needless to say my emotions are more confused than normal. Loss is a strange thing, especially of someone who was so close yet at the same time so far. For the last few years she suffered dementia and didn’t really know who I was or where she was or what year it was  so in some ways it felt like she was already gone. Yet inheritance is an odd thing; I look so much like she did when she was younger, I have inheritied the crazy hair; which reminds me of Heathcliff, Yorkshire side of the family you see; plus it’s dark, crazy, coarse and unwilling to be tamed. Again a sign I read too much. My Granny once pulled out a lock of her hair from god knows how many years ago that she had kept in a drawer (I am  also loathe throwing things away incase they are ‘useful’ one day)  and held it next to mine to compare. It also feels like another part of my childhood dying; the house I grew up in has been bulldozed and is now a block of flats which makes me sad when I think of it. I suppose childhood was the last time I was actually properly ‘happy’, and even then I’m not sure, it fees like I’ve been dysfunctional my whole life. As Elizabeth Wurtzel puts it in Prozac Nation, it’s as if I was broken on the assembly line.

The whole thing is just so confusing, trying to ‘re programme’ myself to love and respect myself , not to self destruct and hate myself, whilst questioning the whole god/afterlife/death/cosmos/vague ‘spirituality’ thing. Also questioning the whole ‘can I really re programme myself?’ if depression is a chemical imbalance can I really just wish it away?

 

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