Tag Archives: psychosis

World Mental Health Day

This is going to be negative but I don’t care as it is my lived experience: I’ve been in therapy since I was 15 because I self-harmed. Seen a wide range of therapists from social workers to psychologists to psychiatrists. Most have ended treatment with me for various reasons. I am now on therapist number 14. First 6 months I didn’t think I was going to stay with him. He is a psychologist with supposed experience with trauma and suicidal ideation. He took me on knowing this. Now since the MeToo, I’ve been having intrusive memories. I tell him about it and he shrugs. Seriously? Why am I seeing you if you don’t know how to deal with trauma when you said you had training? I feel like the system has let me down, yet again.

Before I even saw him, I must have talked to at least 5 different therapists. None would take me on because of my suicidal history. I thought I could shove it aside and just have this guy because he returned my call and wanted to work with me. Now it is a year later and I am finding it so difficult to deal with him. I am once again looking for therapists and I am wondering why. I live in a large city. There shouldn’t be just 1 therapist in my 5 mile radius that deals with suicidal histories. Suicide is its own can of worms. I understand from a suicidologist standpoint. Not everyone is cut out to deal, it isn’t taught in school yada yada. I get it. But where is the compassion in therapy? Are too many good therapists burned out? Am I ever going to find someone to help me through suicidal crisis and chronic pain and all the other shit I deal with? Or is that too much because I don’t follow god or help myself?

Ah, what is a little psychosis and a lot of anger

**may contain errors as I am on my phone**

My day started ok. It was raining pretty hard so I canceled PT. I tried to reschedule but there was nothing open the rest of the week.

Then FB had this you got 4,000 like thing. The 1st pic was my legal document stating my legal name change. I decided to post it to my support group for CRPS. Everyone was supportive except this one person who thought I should give my mother respect and she went on about my mother’s feelings and shit like she knew her. It really upset me and made me angry. I didn’t respond right away. I didn’t think I would but a few hours later I did. I told her you don’t know anything about my mother so stop pretending that you do. I didn’t say nothing more. Then she responds with “I didn’t mean to offend you” bullshit. I didn’t read what she wrote. I was seeing red. My damn foot was hurting me. And that made me more angry.

I kept on having bursts of anger throughout the day. Other than this incident, nothing else was going on except pain. I tried to nap. Pain got worse. It was making me to angry. Then I was reading Twitter and the stuff about the SCOTUS judge nominee who is being accused of rape just flipped me out. Some people were on his side. Others were like why she wait so long, and other stupid shit that I can’t remember now. As a sexual assault survivor, it made me so fucking angry. And what really was the killer that it wasn’t just men saying this. Some women were too. Are you kidding me?

I couldn’t escape the fight over who was innocent and who was guilty. In the end, the vote was postponed, which I was happy about. Now the accuser is facing death threats and is in hiding. She has to make an appearance for something but no one has heard from her. I hope she is okay. That really ticked me off that these high profile cases get death threats and then people wonder why women don’t come forward with their attacks.

The third attack that caused me to be angry was a fucking idiot that didn’t know there was a difference between addiction and dependence. This person was adamant about it being the same thing. WRONG!! This person attacked anyone that said different. I have no idea if this was a troll or not but I didn’t respond. It just fueled the fire that was burning inside. I honestly felt like cutting to release some of the tension. I texted my therapist about what to do about this anger and he said we need to talk about it. What? Talk about being angry? First you want me to be angry and when I tell you I am we need to talk about it? Are you fucking kidding me?? I am ready to rip someone’s head off and you want to talk about it? Fuck you.

More gas to the flames.

I talked to my BFF. She was mad at her husband for doing something without her permission. I am on my friend’s side. He shouldn’t have done that. It helped me to calm down a bit. Her grandkids were on IG and OMG they are so fucking cute. I want to cuddle them. I felt a little bit better afterwards, until the fucking Sox blew the fucking game with the snakes! After the loss, I felt weird and was hearing male voices. I felt paranoid and anxious. I really feel like i am being spied on. I was tempted to call my psych but it is late. She probably would tell me to take an ativan and then call her tomorrow/today. Meds are kicking in. I had to take some neurontin because I was having an L shaped pain and it was indescribable. It drove me nuts. I felt like my head was spinning. I need sleep. Then I saw an article saying if you have less sleep, it could lead to Alzheimer’s. I have it on both sides of my family so I am screwed either way, if I should make it to old age. I just hope this psychotic episode goes away. Male voices scare me as they aren’t my regular ones and usually land me in the hospital. I won’t go though. I don’t want to go back. They screw up my meds all the time and I finally have them all straightened out.

I have therapy tomorrow. Hope I get angry with the jerk.

day 5 and a flare

Day 5 and a flare (warning, long post)

Last night, I had to go to the bathroom kind of late, around 2300 or so. I was also hungry so went downstairs. I must have went down four steps and my ankle went out on me. It became really painful. I stopped and hung on the bannister to prevent falling. Pain subsided a little and I went down a few more steps only for it to happen again. Shit. I held on again to the bannister and waited for my ankle to calm down a bit. I knew the downward motion of my ankle was causing it to get annoyed. I finally went down the rest of the stairs and did my business.

When I came back up to my room, my ankle felt okay. The game was late as it was on the west coast and I couldn’t stay up as I needed to be up at 6. Around midnight, I turned in, or tried to. My body pillow was a mess and was not making me comfortable. I must have flung it off the bed as when I came up to my room today, the whole side of it was on the floor. It collected all the dust that surrounded it. Great. I used a lint roller to get it off. I just decided to use a regular pillow and somehow fell asleep. I woke up about three hours later in pain. It was too early to take the 12 hr pill so I took the immediate release. Two hours later I was still in pain so took the longer acting med. I was early but oh well. I then slept for about an hour until my alarm went off.

I took my morning meds and then went downstairs to brush my teeth and wash my face. I was deciding on what to wear. I thought I could wear shorts but it was too cold and it was kind of rainy. I decided sweatpants and a long sleeve shirt were in order. Except, I couldn’t find the one I wanted to wear. I scrounged my bed and it was nowhere. Oh well, just go with the one I usually sleep in. I left to catch the bus. As I got to the corner, the bus I was to take rolled by. Luckily, another one soon followed so I didn’t have to wait long.

I brought my Dostoevsky book with me. I had 45 minutes before PT. I got coffee at the lower end coffee shop and a coffee roll. When I finished the roll, I got to reading until it was time to leave for PT. PT was not so great. She gave me a few new exercises but I think I am going to have trouble doing it on my left side due to moving my damn ankle/foot. I might have to wear the AFO (ankle foot orthotic) to keep it stable. We just did the right side and she explained what muscles were moving. Then she massaged my hip. She said my muscles were hard as a rock. I said like a tennis ball and she said yes. Some parts of where she was touching was bothersome to my thigh muscle. I had to remind her that my L2/L3 surgery fucked it up. We talked about the PTSD and stuff that surrounded my pain issues and she offered some concrete grounding techniques which I will try as the ones I were using were not working. I chiefly use distraction and music. She had me laying on my back under some kind of box thing. As we were ending, she moved my knee to my chest and my back cramped up badly. It hurt so much. I was able to walk out of there but I was hurting. I came home because my next appointment wasn’t until 1500. I made a fried egg that I kind of overcooked the yolk. Then I went upstairs and was hoping to catch a nap. Well my ankle said no to that soon as I laid down. I left an hour early than I wanted to. I went to Starbucks for espresso and a Danish.

I read my book as I brought that with me. I was going to get some serious reading done. But my god, did Dostoevsky talk and talk and talk. It was about 4 chapters of the prosecutor giving his closing argument. When he was finished, so was I. I have about 8 chapters left in the book and I should be able to finish the book this weekend. Progress. I promised one of my suicidologists that I would read her book so I will. It should be somewhat easy reading once I remember where I put it. HA. Don’t know if it is buried on my bed or I put it somewhere else.

I went to my psychiatrist appt. I gave her the run down of being hypomanic without euphoria and the cycle I seem to be in. She didn’t read anything I sent her but she said she would read it as she always does. I felt kind of deflated because I really wanted to talk about the article I sent her. I couldn’t bring it up if she didn’t read it. I actually was not really present. I just glossed over things and she accepted it. I told her my therapist wanted to meet with me twice a week but I am not sure if I can do it physically, especially with physical therapy sessions going on as well. I had told him I would think about it and get back to him. She thought it was good to be seen twice a week. Then we made an appt for two weeks and I left.

My ankle was kind of giving me grief but it wasn’t bad until I got within two blocks of home. Before the Walgreens by my house, there is this dead end street that leads to some houses. The sidewalk has a little handicapped ramp that, to me, is very inclined. I walked down it and it brought me almost to my knees. Pain was so fricken bad. I had to stand in place until it settle down. It was the same as last night when I was going down the stairs but 10 times worse. I didn’t know what to do. My sister was away (or so I thought) and there wasn’t anyone else I could call for a ride. I took my blessed time limping home. The block that lead to the final block to my street was hilly and downward. OMG did it hurt to walk downhill. I had to stop a few times to catch myself. I finally made it home and my sister’s apartment door was wide open as well as my door. I called for my niece but there was no answer. I stuck my head in my sister’s apartment and called for her again. My sister was home making dinner. My other sister was there as well eating some kind of cheese plate. I had some cheese and pepperoni and chatted with my sisters. I then went upstairs. I took my things up the stairs carefully. I took a seat in the kitchen and my ankle just went berserk. I had no idea how I was going to walk down the hallway to my room. I was in a serious flare. I have been on the new med for five fucking days. I have no idea if CRPS doesn’t care if you take meds or not. I posted the question in my support group. I am still waiting for an answer or support. I had to take the med when I finally got to my room. It was two hours early but I didn’t care. After I made dinner with a boot on, my ankle still flared again. I took the breakthrough med. It is going to be a long night and I have been up for 15 hours so far. I cried in pain while I was in the kitchen. My mother was oblivious.

I don’t know what to do to make this pain go the fuck away. I thought the new meds would work and they did for a bit. Until I walked that handicap ramp, which I will never fucking do again. I wish I could say the same of the stupid stairs but I live in a two floor house so that isn’t possible. Even wearing the boot didn’t help. More than a few weeks till my date. I wasn’t going to go through with it. But I change my mind. I could still change it, again. I haven’t told anyone about this because people keep saying they need me and that makes me feel guilty. Someone also reminded me of the ripple effect and I told her to stop talking to me. I don’t want to hear it. I just want to be left alone in my misery that no one understands. I am so done with explaining about how suicidal I am and not getting any understanding about it. Not that I want support for it. That would be ridiculous. But to know at least where I am coming from rather than have supposed opinions. I just have become callous to anyone that thinks they know me.

I did ask my psychiatrist if she thought I was “treatable”. She said yes. But that is all she said without any elaboration. I am in too much pain, both mentally and physically, to tell her what I am thinking. I am also afraid of telling her what I am thinking for fear of another hospitalization. I won’t go this time, not unless I make an attempt. That is the only way I will go back. I just hope to be successful. Things will be really bad if I don’t succeed. I am scared though. I’ve never tried this method before. And if I don’t get it right on the first try, I am kind of screwed. I am just messed up.

About depression that I have to get off my chest

About depression that I have to get off my chest

There has been a LOT of talk lately about depression being treatable. Let me say first, that for some, it is. Therapy has been helpful to some in dealing with it. Medications and therapy still prove to be useful in treatment of depression or actually any mental illness. It was once thought that schizophrenia was a medication only illness. But I learned through one of my suicidologists that isn’t always true, as there was a paper written by him about he helped decrease an individual’s suicide risk by seeing him weekly or more if suicide was more present. It helped the patient feel cared for. If I find the article in my files, I will share it if you care to read it.

I am in no way saying you should NOT get help if you are feeling depressed. But my experiences (which are not the same to the whole depression population) beg to differ. I have yet to find anything that helps the mood shifts. Since my long time therapist stopped seeing me for reasons I have still yet to learn, I have been the most unstable and hopeless I have been in the 16 years I was in “treatment” with her. We had our disagreements about treatment. Transference and countertranferences were helpful at times but were no long lasting. She stuck with the way she was treating me and I stuck to being, well, depressed and suicidal.

What I have to get off my chest is that sometimes, depression is untreatable in a small percentage of people. There is such a thing as treatment resistant depression. Despite ECT (“shock” therapy), medication, and therapy, one can still feel depressed. There are a trillion reasons for this. Sometimes it has to do with the trauma one experienced. Some has to do with biology itself, that the genetic predisposition of a person makes them depressed. Other times it has nothing to do with a trauma or situation. It just happens that you start withdrawing from life, slowly at first and before you know it, you can’t go back to things you loved because, frankly, you are too depressed. Sometimes you maybe too depressed to seek help and a friend or family member needs to push you to get it. The thing is, depression still exists despite treatment. Some people have suffered depression for years and have never told a single soul. They are the small percentage that still go on with their episodes after they pass. They are less likely to die by suicide. Hell you don’t NEED depression to end your life. It has happened. Look at the Shawshank Redemption movie. The warden was “well” mentally and rather than be arrested and humiliated, he killed himself. Would anyone have thought he would do such a thing? No. And that is what my point is. Although we know what the risks are for suicide, depression and mental illness is only a small window into those risks. There are some people who die that have no history of mental illness yet die by suicide. I won’t go into more discussion about it because this is a loaded issue. I suggest reading the Myths and Facts of Suicide by Thomas Joiner. It is a really good book about what I am talking about.

I can only talk about my experience, no one else’s. I have been depressed since I was 8, maybe younger. I only know this because I started thinking suicide was a good idea at that age. I was 10 when I tried to end my life for the first time. I suffered from depression and after taking Prozac, became bipolar because the medication caused mania like symptoms. Not once during my years of being on medication AND therapy did my thoughts of suicide leave me fully. Neither did depression. There were brief times where I felt contentment. I honestly don’t believe in happiness. Like anger, it is a fleeting emotion and doesn’t last. But feeling contentment does happen for me and I sometimes feel comfortable in it. I know it isn’t going to last long. It never does. The depression always finds a way back, maybe not right away but it does come back. Despite some of my successes in life, graduating from high school, getting my Associate’s degree, publishing two books, I still was depressed. I was elated for a little while but it was fleeing. Just like when I wrote the article for the New York Times. I couldn’t believe and still don’t, that it happened. I still have the check that one day I will frame along with the article. But soon after all the paperwork was filed and I was waiting for it to be published, I was intensely depressed. The New York fucking Times was publishing something I wrote and instead of being happy as a pig in shit, I was depressed. I learned that no matter what my success in life was, no matter how much money I made, good job that I had, I was going to always be depressed. I could do one of two things. I could accept that this was the way it was always going to be or fight it. I chose to accept it.

I knew I had been fighting it since I was 16 that I would always have to take medication for my mental illness. It wasn’t easy but I knew if I was to avoid a lifetime of hospitalizations, I would need to take medicine to hold off the demons. Yet despite this theory, I was still hospitalized. Many times. Some times it was like a revolving door during my worst episodes. In 1994, I suffered a huge major depressive episode. I was hospitalized almost every two weeks and then for two months because I tried to end my life. It was one of the lowest periods of my life. I couldn’t bring myself to do anything. Showering didn’t matter. I gained a ton of weight from the meds I was put on. I started living an almost double life. The life the psychiatrists wanted to see and who I really was at home, when I was by myself. Hopelessness was rampant and totally lost on me. I can’t say that I got better. I just got better at hiding from myself, to keep the darkness at a minimum so I wouldn’t be committed at the age of 19 to a state hospital. Even then the façade I built was hard to put down. I just did what I was told to do and when I felt like acting on my feelings of suicide, I told my therapist or psychiatrist, which inevitably led to another hospitalization. But the hospitals in the 1990s were different than they are today. Today they are nothing but holding pens. Two maybe three days you are in and then you are out. If you need more help and have an outpatient therapist, you see them. You don’t need to be in. Maybe you stay for a week or two. But never more than that. Insurance won’t pay for it. And you don’t really get “treated”. You are watched 24/7 to make sure you don’t harm yourself. You might find a “treatment team” that listens but that is ALL THEY DO. They don’t help you in what you came in for. That is for you and your outpatient therapist to work out. If you don’t have one, you might get referred to someone. I’ve never been in that situation so not sure how that works.

I have lost faith that my illness is “treatable”. Seems no matter what I do, I end up depressed or just stay depressed. I am okay with that. I’ve known for a while that there is no longer an antidepressant out there for me. I am grateful my mood stabilizer still works. I just hope that it does fuck up my sodium levels and I need to some off it. Then I will be really screwed. In that sense, I still take my meds because they help. I no longer have commanding voices every day and the accompanying paranoia and delusions. I have to take a med for that every day. But therapy is still elusive. I honestly don’t know if it helps. Talking with someone honestly, like writing this blog, has been useful. Sometimes it feels good to talk to my therapist and leave knowing that someone understands, even if he thinks I am crazy. He said that he is “taking my lead”, which I am not sure about but it is a learning curve like anything else. And I will stress again, that if you aren’t comfortable with the person you are talking to, if they make you uncomfortable or just not getting it, find someone else. There are a lot of different therapists out there. A lot of different degrees as well (but all should be licensed by the state you are in, if they aren’t, I wouldn’t see them). It will take some time to know if they fit with you. The average is about 3 or 4 sessions. Any more than that might be a waste of time if there is no connection.

random thoughts 07062018

I was up late last night. I was talking to a friend who was concerned about me. I didn’t tell her specifically what I was going through. But it was getting late and I let her know that I will talk to her sometime today. She said okay.

I then got a message from another Twitter buddy saying some friends have contacted him over their concern for me. I had told him months ago what I was planning so he knew. He said I was important to him. I told him he was important to me, too. I didn’t say more than that.

I went downstairs and made coffee. I couldn’t decide what I wanted to eat. I ended up making a peanut butter sandwich. Afterwards, I took out the recycle and trash. I was feeling okay but the bins were on the street so I had to do some walking back and forth. By the time I was done, my foot yelled at me. I limped upstairs. There was one more bag of recycle to take out. I wasn’t going to do it, least not then. I went up to my room and even though I checked off that I took my pain meds, I didn’t. I took them and tried to nap but my foot wasn’t having it.

I am hurting a great deal because of the trash. I had taken a shower so I am sure that just stressed me without realizing it. I am so tired of being in pain. I am trying not to freak out over tomorrow. Tomorrow I see the pain doc and I hope my pain meds will be changed. My PCP has written my current meds which I will pick up tomorrow before the appointment should the pain doc not prescribe or if there is a problem filling them at the pharmacy so I will have meds over the weekend. I am seeing the pain doc late so by the time I get home, and if there is a problem, I won’t be able to fix it until Monday, which will leave me with no meds.

I wanted to write a blog last night but nothing was coming to me. I had woken up around 1500 so there wasn’t much to talk about. I had written a blog around 0600. I don’t know why blogging is becoming so hard for me. I guess it is hard when there is no feedback and I feel like I am just throwing the words out but no one is reading. There may be a few who read the blog for the day but no comment or like. I don’t think I got a like on my blog since last week. This blog is just an outlet for me but lately, I just say the same things. Pain, routine, end of blog.

There was a wonderful facebook post about Kate Spade. She is the fashion bag designer that died by suicide the other day. The write wrote about how she knew this actor had cancer and the type it was and listed a few people with other chronic illnesses, but you don’t hear about people with depression or anxiety or schizophrenia. No one wants to hear that. Everyone seems to judge them on their character, saying if you are this then you can’t be depressed or anxious or have a serious mental illness. Stigma kills so many people who want to get help yet are afraid about how they will be perceived after they have or even to admit they have a mental illness.

My blog started off as a way to talk about suicide because no one was. It is a daily struggle for me but I have stopped because there are people out there who don’t understand or are fearful about it so they report me. I had it happen on Twitter the other day. Just because someone says they are thinking about ending their lives doesn’t mean they are going to right then and there. Talk to them about it. Be there for them. Don’t make them feel more crazy than they are already feeling. Be a support to them and if need be, go with them to get help. Admitting you have a problem is only half the battle. I know so many people who have serious issues and the one thing holding them back is fear of how they are going to be perceived by others. Fuck them. You need help, get it. Simple as that. If the first person you talk to you don’t like or doesn’t fit with you, try someone else. I went through so many therapists to find the right one. And even though the therapist I see now is not right for me, he is good enough. Yes, rejection hurts. I have been rejected by so many therapists because of my suicidal history it is not funny. But I didn’t let that stop me from finding the one I am with now. If the psychiatrist you are with doesn’t help you, there are others. Find them. I know it’s not easy and you think you are hopeless, but you are not. That is the depression lying to you. Too many families go through heartbreak because one member doesn’t seek help they need. Take the step. There are resources out there. Check out NAMI or Google a search for therapists in your area. Talk to your primary doctor about how you are feeling and that you need help. They can often refer you to someone. Or call your insurance and find out who is accepting new patients. Ask how recent the list is because most therapists (as I found out) are not always seeing new patients as the list is old and hasn’t been updated in years.