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Losing hope


Endlessnight
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Hi everyone. I want to say something and I hope it comes out right as I sometimes find it hard to really say what I mean. So I apologise ahead of time if anyone thinks this is rude or hurtful.

When I came on this site I had some hope that my being able to talk about things here would help me. This is actually the second mental health site i've posted to, though I wasn't on the first one nearly as much as i have been on here. I left the first one because I got to feeling dispirited (is that the word I want? Where you kind of lose hope in a way?) about it helping me.

I am feeling the same way here now too. I dont know where to go from here though. I don't know what to do. I guess I want someone to wave a magic wand and make everything okay. I know that's not going to happen though, and I know getting well needs a lot of hard work. I suppose I thought just saying things, letting some things out, would help, and maybe it does - at first - but then nothing. And though you have all given me suggestions and advice and offered help it isn't enough. I guess I was hoping that this would be my therapy and that you would be my 'therapists' (this is where my apology is needed but I want to be frank about how I am feeling). I am really feeling lost right now and as though i've come to a dead end.

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I'm not a therapist, endless night, but I can be a supportive friend. It's true that there is no magic wand. Getting well again means a lot of hard work.

Try moving the energy around your situation and directing it in a manner that would serve you positively. Try being proactive rather than reactive. Doing this empowers you and helps you to regain some control of your life.

Can you think of one thing today that might have the potential to move you forward in a positive way? How then might you reach this goal?

Edited by IrmaJean
typos..2 finger typist
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I know EXACTLY how you feel. I found myself here at my lowest point and almost thought "oh I can talk to other people...they'll tell me the "secret" to getting over this and it will all be fine"

But of course it's not like that and I guess the things worth achieving are never easy. Sometimes I've felt worse from being here...but because (as I have quoted before but I like it!) it's hard to see the big picture when you've been painted right in the middle of it. So I think I couldn't understand why I wasn't getting all the answers. And sometimes I think constantly writing down how I felt was actually reinforcing it, if that makes sense.

BUT it has had positives. I've had some great moments when I've felt good about being here. And I've also started some self taught CBT...it's tough I admit, it will take me ages to go through it. But I have found that certain situations where I would have been a lot worse I have actually handled a lot better. So I am now having a positive time in my life (althought clearly I still have my moments!) I'm taking it slow and not pushing myself too much, otherwise I'll scare myself away from it!!

Is this something you'd think of doing? I find coming on here is perhaps about choosing the moments you do it. Sometimes its good to have a break but then other times it will help to be here, I think. So maybe give it some more time. Looks like we've been here for about the same time, so maybe there comes a "point" for most people where they're not sure whether it's a good thing.

Anyway I hope you stay around :(

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I endless night.

I'm sorry to hear you are feeling so hopeless right now. IrmaJean is right....we are not therapists here. This site is not a repacement for therapy but meant to provide a place of mutual support for each other when we are struggling.

Therapy is very very hard work that requires a huge commitment. It has days when you will feel enightened and hopeful and others that it will feel like you are back to the drawing board. I guess I don't know if you are seeing a therapist where you live but I really do hope so.

The same as therapy has it's peaks and valleys, so does hope. But...hope is never gone, sometimes it's just harder to find.

I do wish you would stay around and talk with us here. You may not always get the answer you are looking for but you will always be cared for and listened to.

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Hi Endless, sorry to hear you're having a tough time of it. Are you still working two jobs.... you must be tired. I just put in 2 months of very intense work and it completely affected my mental health. I just don't have the resilence I used to....

I wonder if you saw life as a journey instead of a destination, if that would help you feel more comfortable with your life. The journey is about trials, good times, things won and things lost, being with others and being with ourselves, it's a whole mishmash of things, different for each one of us. In a book I recently read, the author talked a lot about finding meaning, about seeing a purpose for your life and what you can accomplish with it as being an important motivator to continue the journey of living. I see the teaching you do as being in that order of things, especially because it is to women .... what do you consider are some of the things that give meaning to your life Endless?

Stay with us, I would miss your friendship if you were not with us. I often talk about you to others, about your courage to continue doing what you are doing notwithstanding how badly you feel... it takes grit, I admire that....

Edited by Symora
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Hello everyone. The only positive thing I see in my life is my love for my nieces. Other than that there isn't anything I feel I can achieve or hope for. Even my love for them can be extremely painful, since, as I said in a previous post, my brother used that to hurt me. When my eldest niece got engaged (four years ago) to her cousin I didn't even know about it until after it happened. I worry about them so much and want them to be happy so much that it kills me to think of their future lives. I can't think of anything that I want that I could possibly achieve, not for myself anyway.

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Hello, Endlessnight,

I'm happy to see how others replied to your post - I agree with them, too :o

I'd like to add that what you feel now about being in this community is something that happens also in therapy (sometimes the patient can have a feeling that "it's good for nothing" or "it will never help"). Anyway; no need to apologize for your frank words, really! We all understand it very well... :)

I try to figure out what you miss here the most, except the close healing contact with another soul, that I mentioned in another thread of yours. Maybe it's something like a sort of guidance and... a real continuity (which is typical for therapeutic sessions). So I imagine it would be benefical to start here a new thread about your life and keep writing there quite regularly. It could be your diary, only it will be public and we could comment on it, thus you'll have a feedback. What do you think?

I can't think of anything that I want that I could possibly achieve, not for myself anyway.

This is... well, .. sad, but typical as well. Probably the majority of us had or still have these problems. One of the goals of therapy is thus often to become able to "be good to yourself, identify what you want and need and learn how to achieve it". I'm not at that point yet in my therapy (I mean: I didn't achieve it completely), but... I feel already that it's possible. I hope we can give you at least this hope for the moment. Then, slowly, also more, hopefully... :)

Take care and... please, stay with us; you see how welcome you are here :)

Edited by LaLa3
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Hi again everyone and thank you all for your understanding and support. It does make a difference knowing there are people that not only understand but care too. .:( I've had few people care for me in my life, and those that loved me the most (my parents) are also the ones that hurt me the most. Reading your replies to my post have made me realise I am not alone in this.

What LaLa said about 'continuity' is exactly what I meant but didn't know how to say it. (Re continuity: I do not have and never have had a therapist.)I have posted so many times only to have the thread 'peter out' and go nowhere which has left me feeling frustrated I guess. I do know no one here is a therapist and I don't expect anyone to be one for me, but I am grateful for whatever advice, support and help that is given to me. The fact that you take time from your own lives, from your own troubles to support someone like me is greatly appreciated. Oh and LaLa, I might take your advice and make my posts a kind of 'journal' for me to be able to say what I want to. To do that I guess I should post in only one thread. That would be better.

Take care everyone.

M.

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A 'journal' thread'. I think you have a brilliant idea there, Lala.

Another option, M would be to do this in the blog option here on the forum, although if you'd like comments, better to do it in a thread. If you're concerned about feeling too open you can do some in the thread and some in the blog (you can make your blog private so no-one can view it or only some can view it - so you don't get that feeling of posting something very personal 'out there' that makes you wish you hadn't said it.)

I'm not saying you should hide it away or hide yourself away, just that there are safe ways to be able to express yourself as much as you feel comfortable with to all of us and also a way to be very open where no-one can read it, or write it in the blog and then perhaps bring it into the thread later. And I kinda hope you don't go...

I think I know how it feels to have your threads peter out - I have that happen often too, and I get disappointed... but I guess sometimes people don't know what to say or they don’t relate to me or they don't feel they can add anything to what's already been said. I also tend to say things like "I'll be OK", "I'll deal with it", "I'll get over it", "It's not a big deal" as I have this thing of not wanting people to get worried about my problems, but then it kinda backfires on me, lol. :rolling: I’ll survive. (ack, I just did it again! :rolling:)

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I think I know how it feels to have your threads peter out - I have that happen often too, and I get disappointed... but I guess sometimes people don't know what to say or they don’t relate to me or they don't feel they can add anything to what's already been said.

Yes, this can be a problem sometimes :). But... we shouldn't tent to be too disappointed; it's always also the matter of chance if somebody feels he/she can help or have a meaningful comment. But I've noticed in these forums that we have the tendency to write more in threads that are already long (except from the new ones, from new members), which have the continuity - so I think (and hope) you would have better experiences with your "journal thread".

LaLa, I might take your advice and make my posts a kind of 'journal' for me to be able to say what I want to. To do that I guess I should post in only one thread. That would be better.

Endlessnight, I'm looking forward to this thread or blog! If you really miss the continuity, as I supposed you to do, then this will be a solution.

Good luck!

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Hi everyone. I have been feeling a disconnection with everything lately, so I haven't been writing here much. It feels like i'm floating above watching my body do stuff. I've been thinking about why i'm feeling this way and I think it has to do with my leaving my old job, and friends. I know leaving a job doesn't mean friendship has to end to but for me it usually does. I have such a wall around myself that I start pulling away from people even before it's time to say goodbye so I won't feel anything when it's time to go.

I've been thinking about my nightmares too and that the explanations people have been giving make sense. I know I am in conflict inside; I know I need to make peace with myself.

Edited by Endlessnight
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I was born in England. I grew up there until I was 15 years old. My father told us he wanted us to get to know his relatives in the Middle East (my brother and I. My father and mother were separated). It was supposed to be during the summer holidays. We never returned to England. My father kept saying we would go back, soon, one day, when he'd saved up a little money, etc etc. and I kept on believing him because not to believe would have meant I would have had to accept that I was never going to see my mother, my cousins, aunts, uncles and friends, ever again. Not to believe him would have meant I would have to accept the life I was living and that was something I would never do. So I never went to school. Never got a job. Never did anything really other than exist from day to day, waiting for the day my father would say we were going back home to England. That day never came so here I am now so many years later, still not connected to this life here. Not connected to myself even. Not knowing how to connect to anyone or anything. My life has been a wasted one. Full of regrets and bitterness that I don't seem able to overcome.

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Hello, Endlessnight,

Thank you for sharing this. Now I can see much better your situation.

And it seems also that your "feeling of disconnection" is already overcome, at least to that extend that you can write about yourself again. That's positive :). Hold on it if it's possible :). You surely have more to share and to think out :D!

Your waiting for the return explains a lot. But as you realize it now, you can think more bout how to free yourself from it's consequences. I have some questions:

Do you still wait for the possibility to return? Would you like to live in England again? Would it be possible? If not; why?

Can you take your new job and new friends as a new possibility to start over in a different way; better? What would you like to change? In which way your life, relationships, ... in your new job / new situation should be different to be more pleasant and fulfilling to you?

Take care!

L.

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Hello LaLa. I will try and reply to your questions later. For now I want to answer your last question, about changing jobs etc. I guess I would just like to feel that i'm doing what i'm doing for a reason. I feel I have no reason as I have no real goal in my life. So I feel like a mouse on one of those wheels that goes round and round but gets nowhere.

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I have felt very much like that in the last year as well. In discussing this with my therapist, he felt that I am struggling with finding meaning in my life, an existential crisis of sort. It is something that is typical of people in there 50s apparently. It's a new stage in life, one looks back and sees what life has been could have been, and one contemplates getting older, how one continues to be useful, contribute, if there is meaning to it after all. I have heard lots of people in their 50s tell me that they want what they do to make a difference. I think what you are living is very human...

Are you a person of faith Endless? I have found a lot of solace and answers to my questions of existence in faith. Scripture speaks a lot about the meaning of our lives, how one finds contentment, how all work done in a spirit of service is in fact considered worship in the eyes of God. I have found this type of thinking to be helpful in elevating me above the humdumness of everyday life, and it helps me to find meaning in my existence. I know that when religion is corrupted and used for other purposes it can be suffocating and feel achaic, but I have found spiritual writings and concepts to be a wonderful tool in helping me to understand who I truly am and why I am here.

Edited by Symora
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I dont know if anyone can help me with this or not. I can't really figure out why i'm like this. For most of my life i've been afraid of leaving my bedroom at night. I'm not scared of the dark, but I freeze up at the thought of leaving my room to use the bathroom for instance, once i've turned out the lights. There is another side to this that I can't talk about here, it's too personal, but it involves not wanting to leave the room at night for any reason whatsoever.

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Good morning Endless,

I just picked up this thread and after our conversations a few months ago, realized that we were discussing this then. I'm so sorry for your pain and feelings of being isolated and insulated in such a way that you feel alone and disconnected. Most of us can relate!

My hope is that you're comfortable starting from the beginning b/c I'm not sure we all have the full picture of your family situation, the cultural values you bring to this (which are not anything like the American values expressed here), how you relate to your nieces and even how your role as a woman in the Middle East may be an issue.

I know that you once told me you don't have access to a mental health professional there as it's taboo.

Given what we already know tho, can you list your top 7 concerns and then rate them on a scale of 1 (very low concern) to 10 (extremely urgent), so that we can get a sense of what the issues are for you. for example:

Concern......................................................... rating

1) Feel alone......................................................7

2) Stuck and not able to return to England..............5

3) Afraid of leaving my room at night......................8

4) etc.

5) etc.

Once you've done this, can you look at your concerns and see a common thread or theme that underlies them all? What 1-2 things really sustain these feelings?

I ask this b/c too often when we feel depressed or emotionally aroused, we begin to constantly scan the environment for any sources of threat or even support for why we feel this way. In this process of scanning, what we've done is taken a handful of sand from the beach and determined that the sand is the whole of the beach... that it defines the entire beach and mountains leading to it, the forest and everything around it. Essentially, our life becomes truncated!

Once we know these things, we can slowly, one step at a time, begin to create a path for you that might help lift some of the depression.

Compassionately,

David

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Hello David, and thank you for your caring and compassionate reply to my post. I haven't replied to it sooner because i've been giving some thought to what you said, and also because I have a tendency to run away when I think i've shown too much of myself to anyone. I hurry back to my shell usually. I guess I feel safe there.

I haven't told anyone in my family that I have seen a psychiatrist; therapists aren't available here. I live with my brother and his family. Unmarried women can not live alone here. My brother and I don't speak. We haven't for years. I have written more about myself and my life on my blogs if you have time to read them.

I don't know that I can use the word 'fear' to describe how I feel. I just didn't know how else to put it. It's been a part of me for so long that it's just the way I am. I'm not afraid, at least I dont think it's fear, but I will not allow myself to leave my room no matter how badly I need to use the bathroom. It puzzles me as to why I am like this. I know why I was like this as a child. There was a real reason not to leave the room at night, but now, at my age, it's just irrational, which is why I mentioned it here.

I can't rate how I feel about things as you requested me to do.I dont really fear anything as such.

I am afraid of getting older; that as I get older one day I won't be able to take care of myself; of being alone then. I'm afraid that I will live to an old age. I don't want to go on living like this. My existence is pointless.

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I know why I was like this as a child. There was a real reason not to leave the room at night, but now, at my age, it's just irrational

You described here very well how it works in general! This is not "something special and strange about you"; this is a general rule! We build up many defence mechanisms during our childhood which render easier to "sustain" what we have to "sustain" (then), but many of us hold on these mechanisms even in adulthood, which is in general an important source of problems - and one of the main goals of therapy is to uncover the mechanisms and their reasons and understand that the reasons are now irrational, which, together with some sort of "guidance" (?) by the therapist, leads to overcomming the problematic behavioral and affectional patterns we have from childhood.

Thus it's great that you already can realize some of these patterns and their reasons. Just try to explore yourself more :(

I've written more on your blog :(

Edited by LaLa3
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I haven't replied to it sooner because i've been giving some thought to what you said, and also because I have a tendency to run away when I think i've shown too much of myself to anyone. I hurry back to my shell usually. I guess I feel safe there.

I used to have a shell too, Endless. Maybe I still do, but I don't visit there often anymore. It's really scary showing ourselves completely, I know. In truth I've always wanted to be seen and known for exactly the person I am, but have always also feared any potential rejection and hurt from having revealed myself. It's true that the shell keeps us safe from some pain, but it also keeps us away from the chance for joy. I've been peeking out for several years now and the light is pretty nice out in the open. I know it's hard and I still have to fight myself from retreating too at times. I think if I can do it, you can do it too. What do you think?

I don't know that I can use the word 'fear' to describe how I feel. I just didn't know how else to put it. It's been a part of me for so long that it's just the way I am. I'm not afraid, at least I dont think it's fear, but I will not allow myself to leave my room no matter how badly I need to use the bathroom. It puzzles me as to why I am like this. I know why I was like this as a child. There was a real reason not to leave the room at night, but now, at my age, it's just irrational, which is why I mentioned it here.

I agree with Lala, Endless. As children we develop coping mechanisms that help us to survive and find balance within our lives and circumstances. Although what you've described here sounds like it was necessary behavior for your safety at that time. I think there is a certain comfort in the familiar and it makes perfect sense that what helped you feel safe in the past would help you feel safe now. Logic may tell you otherwise, but what has been deeply ingrained may still be present in our behaviors as adults. Perhaps irrational...but very human too...and something all of us have experienced in one form or another I imagine.

I am afraid of getting older; that as I get older one day I won't be able to take care of myself; of being alone then. I'm afraid that I will live to an old age. I don't want to go on living like this. My existence is pointless.

I think you express yourself very honestly and courageously. I'm sorry that you are feeling so sad right now and are struggling to find purpose. Have you considered what you offer to your nieces? I have no doubt they value having you in their lives. Are there any proactive steps you could take to change things for the better?

I hope you feel better, Endless.

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I am afraid of getting older; that as I get older one day I won't be able to take care of myself; of being alone then. I'm afraid that I will live to an old age.

I have these fears too. I am alone and not wealthy and will be at the mercy of others if I cannot work or take care of myself. I also definitely don't want to live to an old age; my bipolar has got worse over the years and is already bad enough. I have no pension plan and my savings are very basic. I try not to think about these as they just make me anxious.

How do you manage to live with your brother and not speak with him, EN?

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Hi LaLa, IrmaJean.

What both of you said makes sense I guess. (At least it beats me labelling myself as a total weirdo! :P)

Thus it's great that you already can realize some of these patterns and their reasons. Just try to explore yourself more

LaLa writing about or realizing that something is wrong is one thing but trying to overcome or cure it is another. I feel so lost and unable to help myself in any way. It's like me not being able to commit suicide....I want God to do it for me:( I am such a coward in everything.

I know. In truth I've always wanted to be seen and known for exactly the person I am, but have always also feared any potential rejection and hurt from having revealed myself. It's true that the shell keeps us safe from some pain, but it also keeps us away from the chance for joy.

Me too, IrmaJean. I want to be able to remove my mask but I dont feel safe enough or secure enough to do that. I am so happy that you have been able to come out of your shell and reach out to the joy that I know is out there, and I hope that I might be able to do the same one day.

Edited by Endlessnight
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Hello Luna.

I have these fears too. I am alone and not wealthy and will be at the mercy of others if I cannot work or take care of myself. I also definitely don't want to live to an old age; my bipolar has got worse over the years and is already bad enough. I have no pension plan and my savings are very basic. I try not to think about these as they just make me anxious.

That's my situation and how I feel exactly, Luna. I am so sorry you feel this way too. I wish I could say something to you that would make you feel better. All I can do is hug you and tell you what a dear, kind and caring person you are. God bless you.

How do you manage to live with your brother and not speak with him, EN?

My brother and I don't speak to each other because when we did speak we usually ended up fighting. Some of our fights got physical and I would end up with bruises or worse so I decided I would just turn a blind eye to everything he did or said and not let him get to me. Besides which, though we live in the same house he stays in his bedroom all the time. (My brother has a huge chip on his shoulder and is probably as much in need of help as I am. He has practically no interaction with his children. He doesn't even sit or join his children in the living room, one of the things I tried talking to him about which ended up in a fight). I stay in my room mostly. I have my tv and my computer and my bed there. My eldest niece shares my room but only comes in to sleep. We are a messed up family!

Take care Luna.

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