Home again, emotional flashbacks, and holiday withdrawal.

Oh GOD I miss J. Seriously, like a hole inside. If not for my puppy I’d be a lot worse than I am right now- I’d be a crying wreck! He’s so calm and logical- after my last post, I went outside to the pool where J and my mum were. J was already in the pool, cooling off, and mum was enjoying a nice beer.

I had a panic attack trying to get in through the door where my dad had installed a very loud alarm- my brain entered that flight state and I started shaking and crying immediately. All that rage and terror came out in tears, but mum and J were there being awesome immediately. Mum came over took me away from the doors and hugged me til I felt better. J was there, shocked, but calm enough to tell me everything was ok, baby, and to put on my bikini and come in the pool with him to relax. Mum agreed, so I did. It worked. Tears faded, shaking stopped, and within FIFTEEN MINUTES (gotta be a new record there!) I was completely fine again, calm, and making jokes with the family and cuddling J in the cool water.

J can spot my mania immediately, and it’s impressive. Bradley has given me a great tip to manage it now I’m home again (boo, being home is not as nice as being out there with J and my family) and I’m going to start it tomorrow. I’ll set alarms on my phone that will remind me to check in with myself, and to stay calm.

So far, I’ve had a tough ride already. I’m aware that I drank too much whilst I was on holiday, so alcohol consumption has gone down a lot. Tonight, I had a cup of tea (fruit tea, orange smoothie tea!) and a glass of water as my beverages of choice. I’m doing this because when I’m manic, as I suspect I’m heading that way now, I do have poor impulse control and drink is usually the first sign of it. I’ve already had some very depressed moments, but that’s not the bipolar speaking.

That’s something else.

I’m in the midst of a bastard of an emotional flashback right now. For the past few days, I’ve felt unreal and dissociated, and horribly depressed, but the depression waned in the evening. Today it got so bad that I began acting unlike myself- snappy, withdrawn, moody, and exhausted. I even yelled at the puppy- at this point, I’m glad she’s deaf! A long sleep this afternoon fixed a lot of that, and I emerged with a better take on the world. I still didn’t understand why I was feeling like shit, but I was ready to give my day another try.

Dancing was fun and went well, and when I got home, I went upstairs to get changed. Pulling my favourite pyjama/lounge type pants on, something in my head suddenly shifted into place and I got it.

I understood that when I was with my ex, I was used as a fix. Because he was jealous of my family spending an unadulterated two weeks with me, I was often subject to derision and scorn when I got home. He’d cold shoulder me, blank me, and finally fix up a meeting with him sometime or place that was impossible for me. I’d inevitably cancel, he’d throw a fit, and then break up with me. I’d be alone, blaming myself and hating myself for nearly two months, and then he’d need his fix again. He’d pretend to relent, he’d tell me he ‘forgave me’ (er, bullshit sir, I believe you finished with me for no good reason) and we’d be back in the honeymoon phase again. Lovely.

So naturally my poor beleaguered brain still think I’m in for some horrible punishment for having fun. I’m reacting like a beaten puppy and I’m shaking in anticipation of a blow that will never fall.

J’s already been on Skype, commending me for my smarts in realising this. I’m pretty chuffed too… BUT GOD I miss him!!! He knows that, of course.

Another remarkable milestone I’ve achieved whilst away is that I’m better able to do real couple things now. I hold hands with J a lot, I’ll go for a cuddle when I fancy one, and, best of all- I was so tired one night I felt drunk, and slipping off into sleep I told J twice that I loved him. He said it back, and I heard the tenderness in his voice alongside the amused chuckle at how sleepy I was. When I asked him about it the next morning, he said I had indeed said I loved him twice and he hoped I remembered that he said it back to me.

Of course I had.

Stuff will be hard now I’m home. I’m trying to take more responsibilities this year, and I’m hoping I don’t overload myself- apparently, therapy this week with Dr K will be the start of lots of tough things for me. I am very aware there are still big issues I need to face. For instance, whilst I was in America, I had night after night of nightmares and J had to hold me to calm me down one night after I told him I was frightened to sleep. Hopefully, I will get these discussed with Dr K and she will help me become less afraid.

There are bonuses, though. I’m taking on more work so I can fund myself to get to America to see J quicker (I hope), I’m finally meeting a good friend I’ve talked to for a long while, I have a snoring puppy next to me and I’m planning dance numbers for a show. There are definite goals to achieve.

Fingers crossed that this year is the year that I get stuff solved, and not another year where I wrestle incessantly with the contents of my own head.

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My Life as a Rape Joke

Huh, seems I am not the only one who was blamed by a psychiatrist for being raped. Apparently, telling rape victims it was their fault because their ‘personality disorder’ made them get raped is good practice now.
Psychiatrists should be ashamed that BPD is even a diagnosis. It’s revolting. What we all suffer is RTS/PTSD, or I was never with my ex boyfriend for six years of hell. Time to get rid of the misogynistic, archaic and untrue BPD label.

The Life and Works of Olive Seraphim

The rape joke is that
It happened the first time when i was five
and my mother said “never let this happen again!”

The rape joke is that
it happened again, another boy this time, at 14
in tears i told my mother again and she asked
“do you want me to talk to his dad?” and i’d hoped
she would ask
do i want to go to the police.
the rape joke is that i would’ve said no
but just wanted her to ask.

The rape joke is that I grew up hearing
“why do women let themselves be abused?”
and every time I thought “I would let a man
hurt me over and over again
just to hear ‘i love you’ at the end.”

The rape joke is that the universe heard me
and that’s exactly what I received. 
I was sixteen the first time. I said ‘stop’…

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Surprised by life.

Last night, I was invited out by a friend I grew up with, RB. She used to live directly down the street from me, and we shared a lot of fun times as we grew.

Recently, as some of you know, I lost a friend over insesnitive rape joke comments, which is detailed in another of my blog posts further back. I got a message from my childhood friend, RB, saying thank you for posting that status about how rape jokes are not funny, it means a lot to me.

When I asked why, she said she had been raped too and it was amazing for someone to stand up for her, even if indirectly.

That hurt. Now both me AND my friend are part of the one in four. It hurt because she didn’t feel like anyone stood up for her. It hurt because I remember her as a happy-go-lucky six year old. It hurt because she is my friend.

I went out last night and all she wanted to talk about was what had happened to her. She led me away from the people we had come with and we spent ages talking about it.

I hurt for her so much. It seems RB has tried to tell others, but they called her out on it. They told her it was “just bad sex,” or that she was lying. She has even been told to “grow a pair and get over it,” despite the fact that when it happened she was screaming and crying, and it has left it’s sorry mark. She called herself pathetic because of how she still reacts- you know, the hypervigilance, nightmares, flashbacks… She was choked up at one point trying to describe the reactions of others to what she tried to tell them: the truth.

I felt like suddenly, the old world of securities was crumbling like old plaster around us. I realised even more that writing this blog is important, because there are more rape victims out there who feel ‘pathetic’ because of what they had to endure. I realised that so many misdiagnoses of Borderline Personality Disorder are out there because not enough psychiatrists actually understand that PTSD/RTS are caused by being exposed to the horror of rape. It was a weirdly empowering thing to realise that my voice here is doing some good, no matter how smalll.

What RB said next nearly made me cry.

She told me I had been her rock whilst she was at her worst about the rape, without me even knowing. She said that I had been there for her in a way nobody else had, despite the fact that we didn’t talk much. She also said that having somebody to talk to like this was just so good- it made her feel less isolated.

I had an honest-to-god lump in my throat, and tears pricking the corners of my eyes.

Even at my lowest, my most worthless, I was helping someone and I didn’t even know it. I was of value when I felt like dying would solve everyone’s problems over me. There had been value in my life when the dark passenger was threatening to send me down the void forever.

I am still shaken by it. I wish that I had recorded what she said, so I could play it back to myself whenever I feel like I can’t go on.

Sometimes, life actually surprises me still.