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JB's Guide To Insanity

We Are All Flawed

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chronic illness

The Octopus Who Tried to Stay Positive

As always BIG TRIGGER WARNING PEEPS. If you have thoughts of self-harm and suicide please read with caution.

borderline-personality-disorder

What if you can’t stay positive?

What if in times of stress you can’t see the good that is around you?

What if you feel alone even when surrounded by people?

What if those you love, who usually make you the brightest person on the planet, seem so distant that they are basically echoes?

 What if no matter how hard you try to feel something you don’t, and when you do feel it is either deep sadness, overwhelming anxiety, emptiness, loneliness, or all of those feelings combined?

What if you are scared by the above notion that some people do not have a choice in those feelings? That thoughts aren’t the key to solving these problems, because the thoughts themselves cannot be changed. It’s hard to accept never mind understand, but none the less there is no choice provided to you. You have these thoughts and feelings and they are rigid no matter what is said or done.

I’d say I’m a fighter. I’ve been here long enough and gone through enough to know that I am one who will always keep trying. “I’m still here.” has become my comfort and reassurance to people. I’ve battled severe depression and anxiety for a while now and managed to keep myself alive, even with all the suicidal thoughts constantly there for however many years it has been. It’s hard to get a grasp on when things happened in my life with all the medication and mental illness clouding my mind but I think it has been around three years now. I did a rough calculation and found that over the past three years I have been depressed/suicidal for over a thousand days.

A thousand days which is rather daunting. I believe I’m allowed to say that it’s a fucking testament to my strength that I am still here, even though admittedly it has taken its toll on me. I do sometimes feel a bit like the Wolverine of mental health, no lie though. Not to glorify it at all but you know. I’m proud of myself for being here.

wolvey
Big up my fellow nerds xoxo

 Here’s a confession. I haven’t felt joy or whatever happiness is for around a month. I mean the belief that we should all be happy all the time is bullshit anyway and happiness I do believe is more akin to a drug rather than an actual state of being. 100% happy people please do correct me if I’m wrong…

The moment of joy was this brief shining one that lasted for the entirety of one day. Before that I was up and down constantly. Mostly down and even when I was happy, the numb emptiness and suicidal thought track is always in the back of my mind during and then prominent after. That’s the difference between myself and someone without a mental illness. Stability doesn’t exist to me.

I recently got diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder. It’s kind of a mental illness cocktail with depression anxiety and a whole other bunch of stuff thrown in to the mix.

http://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/borderline-personality-disorder-bpd/#.WQQmWIjyvIU

and I also have hyper sensitivity and Crohn’s.

FUN! Lol.

I’ve kind of realised through talking about it that I’ve probably always had the disorder in my life. I exhibit most, if not at times all, of the symptoms along with some others that aren’t in that link. Its effected my relationships, my social life in a lot of miniscule and also huge ways. I do and have done things that don’t seem to have reason to even myself and that’s not in the typical ‘twat about whilst you are young’ way either… These were things that really fucked up my life when there was no reason to fuck it up. I worry about everything I do or say or think and how others perceive me and it has gradually worn me down. I am by nature contradictory, one minute I will have one stance the next another. Fundamentally I know I try to be kind however, in terms of personal wants and needs I am very flippant. There are honestly so many symptoms and things my brain goes through all whilst trying to get through day to day life (each day feels like a week) and live as well as possible.

Can you see why it may be hard for me to communicate what is going on with me?

If you have clicked on that link for BPD then you will see the intense emotions that vary throughout the day bit. So, it’s got to the point where I don’t have that anymore really because I am just gone. It was beyond horrible when it was like that and I think my brain had to cope with it by just shutting off all emotion as it has done before. Sounds lucky I know but… I only feel bad things or emptiness now which is a barrel of laughs.

My point of this entire post though is this.

We as a society can sometimes expect those with mental health issues to fix their problems by simply thinking positively. There is a lot of pressure to always be happy, always stay level headed. I was the same before I was around it. Don’t get me wrong positivity helps. Definitely helps. But with my condition, most of the time I cannot think positively. Try to see it as me saying I can’t physically lift something. If you gave me a car and told me to lift it I wouldn’t be able to because I am a skinny little shit.

“I can’t mentally do it” should be a new saying.

Again just because someone can’t mentally do something it doesn’t mean they aren’t trying. It doesn’t mean they have given up. You have to give people credit for trying right?

shrug
Right?

 Me being positive is not self-harming, me being positive is not giving in to the suicidal thoughts, me being positive is identifying what is real and what isn’t. Are they talking about me? Are they thinking I’m a piece of shit? Did I offend that person? Do I have feelings for that person who I’ve already established I don’t have feelings for ect ect ect ect on a daily basis. A daily fucking basis haha.

You’ve got to laugh or you’ll cry for real.

Here’s the thing I don’t want you to feel sorry for me, I literally just want you to understand. I just want to be understood because a lot of the time I can’t be understood. I’m lucky enough that people around me always try to understand. I know though that there are others who aren’t in that situation. I guess this next bit is for famiies or friendship groups who have a loved one that’s struggling to deal with shit.

Please try to understand that sometimes there isn’t a choice and sometimes there isn’t really a thing that can make it better with some people. That doesn’t mean don’t try to make it better it just means maybe listen instead. You’ll never know how far just listening and hugging or smiling and saying you are there can do for someone. Tell them it will get better though they can’t see it but understand that they cannot see it. Just try not to put pressure on that person to think positive to change their mental illness.

“You’ve just got to stay positive.” Is not something that can always help. Try and judge the situation. Believe me I know how hard it is because I’ve been around people suffering from mental health issues since I was sixteen and I didn’t know how to handle it at first. If you say that to someone close to you then watch their reaction. The little sideways glance as they think ‘but I can’t mentally do that, there’s a block’. The silence because they feel pressured to not let you know that they can’t think positive, no matter how hard they try they just can’t see the other side, even though it very much exists.

Its very easy for us to feel like we are wrong or broken because of these thoughts.

You may not understand and that is fair enough because honestly, we don’t fully either. Me and a close friend of mine call ourselves octopus’ because we are unstable in every way. Physically, mentally, emotionally.

octo
Look at this fabulous mother fucker tho ❤

Like I said you have to laugh or you’ll cry. When crying takes up most of your time it’s always nice to laugh every now and then.

I just want to be understood. Most people do. I have BPD, I’m a mental Samurai Master, I’m an Octopus and I’m also human just like you.

I have found that it doesn’t take much to try.

Peace peeps, stay safe xoxo

Stuff

WARNING: MAY CAUSE TRIGGERS FOR PEOPLE WITH DEPRESSION/SELF HARM/BULLYING ISSUES. Read with caution please.

This is going to be hard for me to write down but I need to do it because I am almost constantly in danger of myself now. If you are reading this then please excuse any errors in my writing.

It may come as a surprise to some of you but I was bullied from the age of about 8 to 16.

8 was when I sort of remember it starting and 16 was when I met my first girlfriend (and now one of my best friends) who in a way saved me from it.

Every single part of my physical appearance was repeatedly criticized and broken down in excruciating detail. Im talking my clothes, my hair, my nose, my eyes, my teeth, my skin colour, my body even my voice- everything was mocked on what id say was an almost daily basis whilst I was at school. And thats not to mention my personality which was completely deconstructed and torn apart repeatedly over those formative years. My love of comics and games, my sensitivity, my base nature was just beaten again and again and again until I learnt to hide it. It wasnt all of those things every day but I remember it being at least one thing that I was criticized for daily by different people. I had no one to tell me It was wrong so quickly i accepted it for who i was. I couldnt talk to my family because i was scared and by the time i befriended people my age who couldve gotten me out of it (as i said i didnt get out until i met my first girlfriend) it was too late and I hid my suffering from them too. It was rare that I got through a day unscathed without feeling self concious and I dreaded going to school or out with people. Granted it wasnt all terrible and I had some good times, but good times dont scar you like bad times do they.

 It didnt go away though after I changed who I am, no. See even after Id morphed in to a different person, warped my personality and buried it, becoming a loud mouthed popular twat in the process to try and make people like me, it still happened. Constantly. I got put down so much and so often that I now have a heap of mental and physical issues. Crohns can develop through great stress and this bullying amongst other things contributed. So I have that to deal with too.

 I was pretty popular in school and amongst the shit bags I did have a couple of amazing friends who I am still lucky enough to be best friends with today. I got popular because I could make people laugh. But secretly I was being put down by a sociopath who was supposed to be my best friend, who would join in whenever others laughed at me and would threaten me with his friendship if I didnt do what he said. Looking back I should have told him to do one but I thought I was worthless what else was I going to do.
Yano what the worst thing was? People calling me stupid, ugly and a freak that would never get a girlfriend became my beliefs. Ive hated myself, not believed in what I could do since I was 11. And i remember so many moments in crisp detail when someone said these things to me. When its drilled so long in to you that you are nothing you become nothing and you block out the positive people’s compliments and thoughts on you. You become a shell that you fill up with other peoples emotions and responses to distract you from the sadness. 

Its like this horrible poison inside of me that slows me down. There is a voice in my head that constantly hurts me and it isnt mine, it belongs to them. It belongs to those ten or twelve people who broke me slowly over the years. I think what is worst is that it was normal to me because a few of those people were supposed to be my best friends… 

I can imagine a lot of those “friends” would put it down to “banter” yeah. But see I have new best friends now who can joke around and have “banter” whilst adoring every part of me and what makes me who I am. Im lucky to say my old nerdy personality shines through now and they love me for it (the three or four friends i still have from school love me for it too and did back then but theyve only mainly seen it over the last three years due to me hiding it). They have never criticized a thing about me and they would do anything for me and I them. My old friends or friend rather would have spit on me if it would make someone outside of our group laugh. Since leaving school and getting away from these people Ive become kinder, smarter, more tolerant, more understanding, more my own person despite the many problems I have and the fact that i struggle to believe any of those things i just said i was if it wasnt for the many people around me who reinforce it every day to try and help me.

 But still that voice I mentioned halts me from accepting love because I dont love myself. I cut myself because of my depression. My depression is caused by lots of things and this voice does not help it one bit. It stops me from enjoying the now because my thoughts are constantly plagued by the past.

 It makes me have breakdown after breakdown every day whether its internal or ones people see. I need to kind of talk about this now because I dont know how else to deal with it anymore. I need to write this down so that its there and so that I can clarify it happened. At some point every day I want to kill myself and it has been like this for the past 2 years (im on a lot of medication, strong anti depressants included, so my time line is completely fucked due to memory fog) I think with very brief moments of joyous clear mindedness. There are multiple reasons for my suicidal thoughts, reasons caused by actual events and the ones created by the false reality that depression forms… however, one of things that tortures me most is that I was bullied. And it feels weird saying that because I dont talk about it and most people didnt see it because I wore one hell of a confident mask in school and even now most days at work. It was only a few months ago that I accepted it was actually bullying that happened to me. I used to just say i got treated like shit but no. I was bullied. And recently it has overwhelmed me and it hurts so fucking much. I am exhausted. I am tired and angry and sick of having it in my system. I torture myself on every little thing about me. It goes beyond anxiety it is self hatred in its purest form, so strong that I cant sleep, that I have to force myself to not cut my arms again every night, that I feel like dying at some point every day, that I cant take even the slightest hint of aggression towards me without freezing up and mentally breaking down. I see a counsellor every week and i cant let it go. It just wont get out no matter what i do.

But I keep going because of the people I have now and my hopes for my creative future.

A few months ago the main culprit for my self torture messaged me and asked me to tell him why I had blocked him on most forms of social media except the one he messaged me on which I had forgot to do. I said why and politely told him i didnt want to talk about it in major detail to which he went on a self pitying explanatiom about how guilty he was and how he shouldnt have done this or that to me. 

Whoopdyfuckingdo.

I was as calm and kind as possible and I told him it wouldnt make a difference but he should let it go and try and move on to find peace as we have all changed since school (including myself). I didnt tell him the effect it had on me because I didnt think he was worthy of hearing it and also I dont want someone else’s self torture on my concience. After he continued with the paragraphs I did however, tell him to apologize to a few people dear to me that he had also upset in the past. Then when he argued saying he couldnt apologize to everyone he decided that he would have the balls to say that I was treating him like a bad person which wasnt very fair of me.

Bless.

I left it at that to stop myself raging at this deluded self righteous piece of human shit and telling him to go kill himself like I should have done given the years of psychogical Hell that has been inflicted upon me by parasites like him. 

And if he is reading this then here’s a message for him.

Fuck you and Im glad you feel guilty you piece of shit. And even though I would probably feel sick inside and want to die if I ever had to have the mispleasure of bumping in to you again, and even with all the horrible shit I have to go through daily I want you to know that the many, many people I have in my life these days are each worth a billion of you. Also a heads up if you see me out with them Id advise not coming near us to try and talk to me because… as soon as I point out who you are, they’ll probably tear you to pieces.

That sounds like im angry or bitter or callous and i honestly try not to be because it doesnt solve anything and neither does demonizing someone… But you try going through it every day without being a bit spiteful. I think all things considered I could be a lot harsher.

A positive is that I am now a good person because I know thats what i am from the love I have and the people who lift me up and show me who I really am inside and outside. The people who have gone through Hell with me and have held me when I have had panic attack after panic attack (and in some cases vice versa). Yeah I might have just done stupid shit in school but you know what, I didnt and still to this day dont insult people because of who they are and how they look. And the rare occasion I did was from that particular “friend’s” pressure/influence and I apologized and beat myself up for it mercilessly. Believe me I know Im not a saint and its no excuse if I ever hurt anyone because at the end of the day my choices are my own even if I was weak and semi forced in to doing the wrong thing. But I have and most likely will never forgive myself for even the slightest mistake I make/have made. 

Maybe I should but I cant because of what has happened to me. Most days the mask is on but cracked deeply and now everyone sees through in to that damaged sad person who feels sick whilst looking in a mirror.

I suppose a point of this would be to be kind. You dont know who you hurt or how much effect you have on people with your words. But in all honesty this doesnt have a point. Because by the time youve finished reading this i will be back fighting off suicide and trying to keep pushing through. These words dont do what I go through justice in even the slightest way. Im not looking for pity or sympathy I just needed to write this down because Im tired. Which again is an understatement.

ALWAYS KEEP FIGHTING

It was a long fucking January…

…But so far its been a good fucking February.

LET ME EXPLAIN. Also strap the fuck in because i have read this back and its a bit long so stay with me. THERE IS A POINT TO THIS.

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You know one of the main problems l get with being a depressive? It is sometimes hard to get my story straight. One minute im somewhere in the ballpark of okay the next im spiralling out of control with no way of stopping myself.

Bad me has his hand around my throat…

It can cause difficulties especially in my social and work life. I cant always tell someone i am one thing, because i can flip throughout the day. Literally it can be hour by hour and this is how i am when i am not just completely taken over by it. Its harder when people dont understand but im lucky to have a great work team who fully support me and know its out of my control. But still days sometimes go by without me having an answer to the question “are you okay?”. Despite that though, something new and good came in to my life and for the sake of that i was kinda managing it through Jan.

Key word is that i was managing it.

See I tend to get overwhelmed easily. As i said, It was going pretty good after i had clawed my way out of the worst depression episode i have ever experienced however, i had suddenly a bunch of shit to deal with. Aside from the good people and the positive things in my life there seemed to be a lot of pressure building on me. I wont go in to it too much but i was under quite a bit of stress-

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– and that combined with a really bad cold (ooh sniffles), caused me to have a flare up of my Crohns.

Now, I dont talk about my Crohns much as it’s something i’ve been managing (as much as it drains and hurts me i would say it’s usually under control which is lucky for someone with the condition) for a while now. My depression isnt helped by it but i class that as just one cause in a list of many that lead me to become so low. I feel like i can talk about my depression better than my Crohns because it effects me far more than my Crohns does.

Anyway! Three weeks ago i had the Crohns flare. I almost passed out (bit of a blur) a few times at work, with me eventually ending up in hospital until the early hours of the morning. It was very draining and upsetting and i still havent really got over the lack of sleep, or rather gotten over the lack of sleep ive had since i was eighteen.

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Me kind of at my worst stage after hospital looking sexy but still like shit.

#sleepyaf
#baggyeyessohardcouldcarryshoppingin

😴😴😴😴😴

Stomach pain.
Body aches, and i mean the type that you cant move from.
Exhaustion.
Discomfort.
Bleeding out my ass (sorry if you reading this over breakfast).
Nausea.
Disorientation.

All at once. Usually my Crohns just cherry picks them on a daily basis but this was the whole shabang.

So! Day to day i see my body working at half capacity 50%.

When its a flare up or my depression swamps me 25% or lower depending on whether or not im in hospital.

As someone who has lived without the conditions and knows what its like to feel 100% i know that i can never get back to being that healthy or functioning physical wise again. I also know that 100% is definitely a thing and that a lot of you reading this will feel on top of your game right now.

One of the keys to understanding a chronic illness is knowing that people like me wont ever be like that physically. Mentally yes we can be if we keep fighting! But not physically unless they find a cure which fingers crossed they might do one day.

As stated mental wise im tip top right now but with the body the best i can do is a solid 75% and thats on the rarest of days when im storming in to life and grabbing it by the balls (translates as when ive eaten properly and luckily avoided anything that might set it off).

If that whole percentage thing helps you understand living with autoimmune diseases/depression a little better, then im glad.

Havent felt so physically bad in a while so was a bit of a shock to the system. The problem i was having is that they had put me on steroids which were effecting my depression quite badly the first week or two. Epic mood swings that left me suicidal and feeling sick. Im still on them but my dosage is being lowered week by week until the beginning of march when i can come off them and theyve actually made me feel a lot better both mentally and physically. Still getting fatigued easy as shit and i do have to keep taking it steady as proved by the other day when i had to go home from work because i was so knackered.

But that was one day. Aside from that i was coming in to work more positive then i have been in i would say a year and im glad to announce that

I HAVENT BEEN SUICIDAL IN TWO WEEKS!

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YUP!!!! ✋✋✋🎈👍👍👍🎂👌👌👌🎉

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Well i have been suicidal once or twice but not as it has been in the past. Ive actually been doing really well mentally, despite the odd hiccup. Creatively im back on track which i havent been in so long, ive organized myself and built mental walls. Its good and ill explain in another post. Not out of the woods yet but its better than it was and thats a start 🙂

Back on to crohns though…

I have been on steroids once before a long time ago for about a week or two but they made me really sick so i asked to be taken off them. It’ll take my body some time to get back to full working order but for now im pretty steady. I am kind of lucky to be only on a five week course because some people have to go on them for a lot longer periods.

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                 I got some take away 😉

I told you THERE IS A POINT TO THIS BLOG POST and its here.

Mis quoting Batman Begins:

“why do we fall?”
“So we can learn to pick ourselves up.”

I picked myself up from the rubble. I and the safety net of mine (along with all this medication) brought me back to the land of the living. Im more focused on whats important now than i ever have been. Just because steroids didnt work once doesnt mean they didnt work this time. Have to keep trying things to heal yourself.

I have like two different audiences here so let me try and address you both.

To my non depressed peeps:
Some of you may think that two weeks isnt that long to go without being suicidal. Thats because you dont have to fight your own brain every day. Not your fault but try and see it as that. Someone whos fought off their own fucking brain. Imagine your brain being your enemy not something you just use to decide what socks youre going to wear in the morning. Sounds pretty dangerous dont it? Also i know most of you are but be kind. Try and be understanding. You have no idea how much your understanding helps.

To my depressed and faulty diamonds in black and white:

We fall so we can get back up even stronger. I make it sound like i got lucky i know what youre thinking because i would think that too. Its not something you can just snap out of. Its not something you can just cure. Its something that pummels us. But we dont ever let it kill us.

To those of you who can go a day or even an hour without being suicidal that is a fucking achievement and you are winning already. Dont for a second think you aint. Youre still here which makes you stronger than most of the people around you.

You have to always keep fighting (akf). Always. No matter what, you need to keep scrapping because one day it will be warm and safe and nothing will hurt anymore and more importantly it will be that way and you will be ALIVE. Im not fine im far from it but im better than i was and this fall has shown me how to keep myself safe. I can do this. You can do this. There is literally so much to life and this is actualy me talking, not depressed me. I have been and no doubt will be again on both sides of this fence. Mentally i have been the lowest that you can be without being physically dead. Its fucking horrible and hard and frightening but once you find that thing that brings you back then you will realize life is worth it. And that thing will be out there. Its okay to be depressed its okay to be sad. But you have to keep fighting for your life. Because i assure you it is vastly more important than you think it is in this moment.

We are all diamonds inside. Please see that you are one too or just see how others see you. My friend told me that a diamond is a diamond because it has no self worth, It is valued by others. He said that i cant ever see my self as a diamond because i think everyone else is far more important. But i had no idea how highly this family of mine thought of me and chances are neither will you.

If said others around you are negative and dragging you down then do your best to get out of there. Bad things come to bad people eventually and those that hurt you will put themselves in to misery. Find the good because they are out there. I was lost for a very long time until i found my people.

Its not easy i know, but im just asking that if you read this and are depressed or going through a flare up of a disease dont quit. Keep fighting because you are so fucking strong. Youre a boss like me. Keep fucking shit up. You will get there in the end and it will be so worth it.

You Batman.

We Batman.

Stay safe, stay strong and akf bitches. You got this. We got this. My favourite comic is Calvin & Hobbes. It got me through a lot when i was younger and is just genius. Think this kinda is relevant right now for whoevers reading.

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Its not always going to be good. But its not always going to be bad either. ✌

                               Xoxo

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