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benji
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Maybe this isn't as "urgent" as it would have been, say, nine hours ago, but today has been a struggle. I had a complete meltdown--off into some oblivion in my head where everything about me was wrong somehow. I ended up hurting myself, and I was seriously considering whether it would be prudent to end myself entirely. I crawled out of my little sad hole by taking something I shouldn't have. So now here I am, feeling dead inside. My eyes are sore.

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I have a hotline humber if it comes to it. I've called them before. Sometimes talking with someone who is kind can be very grounding. I think my suicidal feelings are mostly because i feel trapped and helpless. I don't really want to die, I just feel like i should, if that makes sense. I just feel not quite right right now. I see my therapist on wednesday, and the med guy on tuesday (will likely be adding a med). I'm hoping to hold myself over until then. but it's very difficult sometimes.

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If you feel "it doesn't matter", then maybe you can tell yourself that it even doesn't matter if you hurt yourself, so you have a choice - and as there are people (I'm sure not only in this community) who would prefer very strongly that you don't hurt yourself, then... why not to please us and stay safe? I know SI can be very tempting :(... It's good when you have something to do to re-focus a bit your thoughts. You say you don't. But what about talking about the reasons of your frustration (here)?? This kind of venting can be useful...

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If you feel "it doesn't matter", then maybe you can tell yourself that it even doesn't matter if you hurt yourself, so you have a choice - and as there are people (I'm sure not only in this community) who would prefer very strongly that you don't hurt yourself, then... why not to please us and stay safe?

Yes, there are people outside of here who are bothered by it when (if) they find out. When I said it didn't matter, what I meant was it didn't seem to matter what I try to do to feel better. Sometimes nothing seems to help.

I know SI can be very tempting :(... It's good when you have something to do to re-focus a bit your thoughts. You say you don't. But what about talking about the reasons of your frustration (here)?? This kind of venting can be useful...

The reasons....I don't know. Sometimes it seems like anything and everything is a trigger. There was a pretty big fight with my partner yesterday that was probably a contributing factor. I don't even know whose fault it was. I can't even remember how it started. I just remember feeling like crap and hating myself. Things on that front still don't seem to be in sync today yet. But this problem sits on top of other problems, most of which, fortunately, are really past problems I just need to sort through. There was a lot of mistreatment, primarily by my mother (though my father was happily vacant much of the time, which wasn't so helpful either). She would yell and scream and smack us around and treat us like we were nothing but annoyances. And then turn around and pretend like everything was normal. If you were to bring any of this up to her, she would deny it completely. So I have a hard time sorting out if the problem is her or me. Things are really mixed up there right now because there's some ongoing drama between her and my sister and my sister's kids. I get one story from my parents, and an entirely different story from my sister, and both sides present themselves as though what they are saying is complete truth. I either have to believe my parents are saints, and my sister is annoying (and I know full well she can be), or that my sister is a saint, and my parents are beyond evil (and they--especially my mother--can be that way at times). Perhaps the truth is somewhere in the middle. Anyway, I'm trying not to think too much about all of that, and trying not to get too caught up in the middle of it. It feels like everyday there is so much to do and most of it doesn't get done and it adds up and I'm overwhelmed. I feel like I want a vacation from life for a few months. I want to be able to do nothing for awhile without things stacking up and making things worse just because I took a break. I don't want to feel like people are expecting things from me that are too difficult to give, and then holding it against me when I don't give it. I feel cornered by life, and like I don't have the tools to get out.

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I wanted you to know that I read your post, Benji, and I'm listening. You write intelligently and express yourself very well. I'm sorry that you continue to struggle. :( Family drama can be an energy drain, I know. Do you ever have the chance to do things that fill you up and bring you joy? Sometimes a walk in nature can be replenishing for me.

I wish you wellness and healing.

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I thank you for listening IrmaJean.

Sometimes I do try to go on walks or go for a jog. Or I read. But right now I'm feeling wobbly in a way, like my head is weak and anything might set me off again. I'm afraid of interacting with people even though I have a desire to. I fear rejection and I fear doing something wrong to make them hate me. I feel that there is enough bad about me that they should. I feel alone even though my partner is here sleeping next to me. I can't sleep. I'm sorry for whining so much. I'm not always like this. I'm just in a slump. I'm trying to remind myself that it will pass like it always does. Last week in therapy, my therapist reassured me, that everytime I've been like this when we meet, I was ok again by the next session. The next session is Wednesday. So maybe this will lift soon.

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Fighting again. Or really, not even fighting. He's cutting me with words and I sit there and take it because anything I say only makes it worse and I just want it to blow over. I keep feeling that there's something fundamentally wrong with me that I can't fix. People should avoid me. I am dirt. He has every right to be mad at me. But it's frustrating because I don't know how to change myself. I even feel bad posting here and whining about it. I don't even know what to do. I keep thinking I need to disappear somehow.

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Benji, I am so sorry you're having such a tough time right now. I absolutely relate to what you're expressing. The family interactions, the feeling trapped and cornered, the desires to hurt yourself or to just disappear. I have been there. Can you just take a little time for yourself? Walk away from conflict, go someplace where you can have some peace, and just spend a few minutes doing something you enjoy? Sometimes, when all I want to do is either tear myself apart or crawl into a hole and die, that can help...

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Benji, I'm listening, too... Don't be sorry for "whining"! I think it's good to have a place where you can share your thoughts and feelings between therapy sessions... This is a place where you can vent, cry, be angry, ... without being judged :).

When talking about "truth" in therapy, my therapist told me that everybody would describe "what happened" differently and it's not the aim of therapy to find "the truth", I just need to discover what "my own truth" is (-but these are not his words, just mine), or rahter... how I perceived it and how I'm affected by it and what can I get from it, what to do with it. Maybe this attitude could help also you to get some distance from the mess your relatives are presenting to you. Yes, they all see it in their own way. But it's not up to you to decide "what is reality". It's up to you to find a way of dealing with the mess without letting it affect you too much. I know it's easily said but hard to do... It surely needs some time - mostly for the emotions to attenuate. But when you find a way of dealing with this kind of problems (which are not very related to you - it's their problem, you are only the witness of their "story-telling"), then if future, it will be easier for you to do the same more quickly, not to let the emotions and "obsessive thoughts" (about the problem) to get a hold on you for too long.

It's different in case of your closer family :(. The way your partner is treting you can't be just somehow ignored... I'm sorry it pushes you to absurd conclusions like "People should avoid me. I am dirt. I need to disappear somehow" :( . I know this kind of thinking from my own head and I used to think it for many years without external reasons given by others! It sounds as if my situation was too different, so I can't make any comparison and derive help from it. But I don't think so. I suppose that we have in commun the most important thing: No matter what others show you by their behavior, you're not "dirt", people shouldn't avoid you and you don't need to disappear. But it's you who has to learn to believe in it. For me, and as far as I know, for mamny others, too, it was the therapist who served as "a reference point", as a proof that ... even knowing everything about me, it's possible to accept me, not to hate me, to like me, ... Telling him "everything" and still feeling as... "acceptable" showed me the possibility to see myself that way, too. It doesn't mean that I can't change or that "I'm perfect" (ha!). It just gives a positive starting point for the changes. Wanting to change "because I'm a peice of shit and nobody could stand to be with me" gives a huge pressure and a feeling that the change is impossible - noone could change from being "evil" to being "lovable". When you stop seeing yourself as "evil", then you can much better analyze your true weeknesses and "flaws" and see what is actually changeable and what is better to accept and find a way to live with it. I'm describing it in few sentences, but it's surely not a short process for some months... However, I don't believe there are quicker an much easier ways.

Have you ever looked at the conflicts with your partner from another perspective - considering the possibility that he could be the main source of the problems? That he's cutting you with words because he's too aggressive, not because you're "that bad"?? I don't say it has to be like that. It's often not black-and-white: The conflicts are usually caused by both sides. However, you need to understand his reasons and his negative, bad habits (in communication and treating others in general) to be able to deduce something about your own reacions and your part of the "guilt". (This reminds me how my therapist suggested (in the contexts of quarrels) that there's no "guilt" and there's no reason to try to find out "who's guilty for what happened" - but that was in my situation, maybe this can't be applied to you (?).)

What you seem to do is only to assume automatically that it's all your guilt, your problem, you are the bad one who needs to be punished and avoided. I hope that you'll talk about this a lot with your therapist and find out why it's wrong...

BTW, I've just read this book

Y.D. Yalom: Every Day Gets a Little Closer: A Twice-Told Therapy

[i tried to post a link but it didn't work...]

it's about therapy of a young woman and one of her main problems was her realtionship with her boyfriend (they lived together for some years) and she also was very ... how to say it? She assumed that every criticism from him was right and that she needed to change a lot but didn't know how, ... and it had a happy ending ;), so maybe it could be informative, insightful also for you, although you're surely are in a different situation in many other aspects.

Take care!!!

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Taking time for myself only leaves everything to compound in my absence and then it's even worse when I come back. Certain people will hold it against me.

I don't know what's going on in my relationship. History suggests this will blow over at some point, but then return again later. Maybe this is the wrong way to view it, but I'm hoping a med adjustment (coming Tuesday) will make it so he will like me better and help me be what he wants me to be--what I can't seem to be right now because I have too many hang ups getting in the way. I know this sort of thing should go both ways, but I only have the power to change myself, not those around me. I know I need to accept myself. Sometimes I think I do, but then outside world presents evidence which suggests I'm wrong in thinking I'm worthy of anything or that anyone should like me. Imagine someone who is a criminal and they do bad things that hurt people all day. If they accept themselves, that's maybe not a good thing because there is a lot wrong about them that needs to be changed. I've never broken the law, but that's how I feel--that even if I accept myself, I'm accepting someone who should be seen as unacceptable. So any time I do feel okay with myself, I feel like I've embraced by badness somehow. Instead of fighting against the despicible thing that I am, I'm owning it.

My partner will admit that it's not all me--that it's partly him too. But it still doesn't help me feel that it couldn't be changed for the better if only I changed. Right now he is frustrated and so he's saying all sorts of mean things. He's been telling me all the things about myself that are wrong and flawed and that won't change. And I feel like trying to deny any of it or argue against it will only make me look desperate. So I keep my mouth shut, and take it out on myself instead of him to keep the peace.

What makes self acceptance so hard is that I keep looking at all of the people in my life and all of ........................................forget it. just had a fight over the phone about windows. He hung up on me. I don't even care anymore. Nothing i say or do is ever right. I'm done trying.

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I understand you. I also used to have the same arguments - about criminals and accepting the unacceptable, ... I feel sorry I can't express it in a way that would convince you, but... I also realize that ... that wouldn't be "the way". It would be "a one-step-process" (= "you accepting my words because they would seem right to you") and that's not what you need. Everybody needs to find his/her way towards the kind of "acceptation" that is right in his/her case. I don't know you and telling you that everything you have ever done is good would be, sorry to say it that way, bullshit. But I know you to the extent that allows me to say that the idea that "nothing you say or do is ever right" is wrong, too (and also; "comparing" yourself thisway to a criminal is far away from the reality and can't be useful). I know; you're exaggerating here because of your emotions. However, it seems you really think something very similar :(.

Relationships are all more or less troublesome/difficult and we all sometimes have quarrels and remorses, ... but it doesn't have to be as painful as it seems to be in your case. To work it out, you both need... firstly the will to change the realtionship, and than a lot of understanding. But the understanding often can't come "from the inside"; and here (also) is the role for the therapist; to help you to recognize the behavioral patterns and their probable reasons, ... Haven't you considered a couple therapy? Maybe it could be the next step after some more progress in your therapy.

will make it so he will like me better and help me be what he wants me to be--what I can't seem to be right now because I have too many hang ups getting in the way

This is another sign of your self-repressing/defering attitude that reminds me the young woman from the book I mentioned in my previous post. In her case, she wanted to be as the others, especially her partner, would like to have her, because she was afraid that in other case, when being herself, she would be rejected (because her partner often criticised her). But then she's discovered, thanks to the therapist, that it was just her prejudice and that everything was better for both when she began to be assertive.

Sorry for talking about a book; I know every situation is different. But stories of others (and this one is real; it's a journal from the therapy, so to say) are often inspirational and make us think in new ways...

Is it possible that your partner wants you to be perfect, ideal? And you want to please him and have the same aim and are in constant distress, because it's impossible to be ideal for anybody?

Could you find some time, when you're not under time- and emotional- pressure, and talk about what kind of "imperfection" is acceptable for him? How close are his and yours limits for what you consider "good enough" (/"close enough to perfect")?

What about trying to focus now on one problem and see if you're really that "bad" like you see yourself, in that one case. For instance; hat happened to the windows you mentioned? What was "your fault"?

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I can't tell. I can never tell if it's me or not, and when someone suggests that it is, I either agree with them, or if I disagree, I feel evil inside--like I'm lying somehow, or like I'm trying to manipulate them. So I'm either being submissive, or I'm being evil and manipulative. There is no in between. When I stand up for myself I feel like I'm being mean and rude and bad. Sometimes it feels like there is nothing I can do that would be ok. I either just have to be content in being bad, or I have to hide from everyone.

My partner isn't like you might think. And I'm not making excuses here either. He gets in bad moods like anyone else does and unfortunately his coping strategy is to cut to the core anyone around him. He will usually apologize at some point and make an effort to resolve things.

I'm getting tired of hearing myself talk about this. I can't seem to shut up. All it really boils down to is I feel bad and wrong and I don't know how much of it is internal or external or even valid at all. When I get really stuck in believing I am horrible and nothing can change that--it doesn't matter what anyone says to me. They can reassure me all they want but I am not capable of believing them. My therapist has been referring to those episodes as "emotional flashbacks" in the sense that it's like I am experiencing an emotional response that would have been appropriate for past events--such as when I was a child and my mother treated me as though everything about me was bad and wrong and it didn't matter what I did, she treated me like I was an annoyance. And there have been times when I've been able to think of it like that while being in that mood and turn it back around to grieving over the hurt I felt as a kid, instead of internalizing it as though all of those feelings were reflective of the current reality. If any of that makes any sense at all.

I took some pain pills to calm myself today. I realize it isn't a long term solution, but it boiled down to that or something worse.

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If any of that makes any sense at all.

Yes, it makes perfect sense to me. And I'm very glad to see you've been already able to help yourself a bit by this strategy! I know about this kind of "emotional flashbacks"; I just didn't know that you'd been already talking about that in therapy. It's great you did and I hope that in time, you will manage to "un-learn", so to say, this kind of emotional response, or at least to learn how to quickly get rid of the automatic thoughts and not to allow the "flashbacks" to "manipulate"/influence your current feelings so much...

I took some pain pills to calm myself today. I realize it isn't a long term solution, but it boiled down to that or something worse.

I'm also glad to see you're good at yourself :). Not sure if pain pills are a good choice (it depends on the dose and on your susceptibility to possible side effects), but... you'll meet your doc soon and you'll receive appropriate meds, so... then you won't have to take pain pills for calmimg anymore ;).

My partner isn't like you might think.

It's good that you say "might" ;); because I don't "think" anything about him; I don't know him and don't judge him; I'm always only suggesting possibilities and I cannot tell which is the most probable. It's very good that he usually apologize at some point and make an effort to resolve things. I believe (not know, but stil believe ;) ) he's a good man and he doesn't want to hurt you. Yet he can do it without wanting it. He can feel bad because of his behavior similarly as you do. It would probably be better also for him to change a bit to make your relationship more comfortable, wouldn't it?

... So I'm either being submissive, or I'm being evil and manipulative. ...

I can see the point. Have you already told this to your therapist? I perceive it like a very important topic.

It seems you see things related to you like "black or white". Moreover, because of the consequences of the way your mother treated you, you don't believe it could be "white", so you assume that everything must be "black" :(.

Have you already also wondered why your husband (/others) loves (/like) you? I'm asking because it was one of my questions in the past, when I felt so unlovable. Do you think that he loves you only because he believes you will change someday?? If he did, then it really would not be a love worth the effort to maintain... You ARE lovable as you are. You CAN change to some extent, but the changes are NOT a prerequisite to becoming lovable.

Maybe you could include in the trying to learn to be good at yourself also doing some little things to yourself - a little joy every day, just for you. And learn not to feel guilty about it. It can make you feel good and in that good mood, you can be also nicer to others; please them by your smile...

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Adding Wellbutrin to the mix. I took my first one this morning. My pdoc also mentioned something called Deplin, which I'd never heard of before. I said I wanted to research it first.

Off to see the wizard (therapist) in a few hours. He was right last week when he suggested that he didn't expect to see me so down again this week because I've never been like that two weeks in a row. But this time around, I think it was only because of the timing of appointments. I started feeling down right after one session and continued feeling bad through the next session and on up until about yesterday. Just shy of two weeks straight, which for me, is unusual.

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I had some very disturbing dreams last night. One in particular made me feel very sick. It was disturbing enough that I found it difficult to even tell it to my partner because I feel horrible that my mind could create something like that. It was so vivid. The whole theme of the dream was like something out of one of the Saw movies, except I haven't watched any of those in a very long time. I was forced to do horrible thing after horrible thing in order to survive. It was all very bloody and very sick. I'm wondering if this is maybe a side effect of the Wellbutrin. I know I had a night or two of very vivid dreams when I started the lamotrigine, but while those dreams were intense, they weren't intense in a bad way. I am sincerely hoping tonight won't be a repeat. I don't know if I can handle that again. One of the acts in the dream in particular, I just can't shake from my head. What I was doing was very sick and very cruel. I know it was just a dream, but it's left me feeling like a horrible and evil and messed up person.

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Benji, I'm sorry you didn't get a reply sooner :(

People do care, I for one, care very much.

Those dreams sound very scary and disturbing, something I can certainly relate to. You logically know that those dreams were beyond control, and exactly as you said, a dream. Could you talk to someone about them? A therapist? I find that once they are out in the open, forced into a 'real-life' setting and out of your head, you can see how unrealistic they are and they quickly become less frightening.

Could you share what it is you can't stand about yourself? You need to try to fight the negative self talk, it can only be damaging. May I ask, did you SI? What feeling were you trying to escape, was it to punish yourself? How did you feel during, and how did you feel afterwards? Did it 'work' for the purpose you intended?

Take care, please check back and let us know how you are today!

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