Another preventable suicide.

Stories like this are exactly why I will never, EVER give up talking and campaigning and SHOUTING about mental health, my experiences and what happened to me. How dare they not listen!?

 

It makes no sense to me that a woman who was known to try and commit suicide was left alone in a cubicle, and only classed as a “moderate self-harm” risk. A very few people will listen, but as I’ve experienced, mostly nobody wants to know. Suicide is STILL not taken seriously. It’s seen as something that only a few people do, and that few people attempt.

Anyone is at risk. Anyone can develop depression. Anyone can have a mental health issue. This is not a problem attached to the few- the many can suffer too.

 

http://m.thisislancashire.co.uk/news/11771802.CALL_FOR_ANSWERS__How_could_my_vulnerable_wife_have_been_left_to_kill_herself_at_busy_A_E_/

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Crashing down is so familiar.

It’s happening.

I hate this place. I keep being thrown here, keep being locked into this cycle of wishing I was dead and not seeing a way out.

Monday was a nightmare. It was pretty frightening. I saw myself in the physio’s eyes and saw a has-been with no future and no present. I was ashamed of the leg that’s not the same size as the other one, ashamed of the knobbly knees, the bad back, the shape of my pathetic useless body that’s “out of condition”. Another way to say not good enough.

I’m under no illusions- she was trying to help me, trying to motivate me to realise the shape of my therapy with her to come. She’s attempting to push me harder, to help me achieve the goal of returning to dancing. She even said that if I decided not to, it was ok because there was definitely life after retirement.

Oh I know that. I’ve been there for the past two years, and it’s been horrible.

Waking up and seeing the body that let you down so many times in the shower, and hating it. Waking up for work on Monday and hating it. Waking up and hating yourself.

Crashing down.

So the inevitable crash came. I’m sorry I didn’t blog properly in so long- truth be told, I’ve been struggling since before the new year began and I’m so exhausted. Nightmares or lucid dreams plague me and I toss and turn, and wake up almost every hour to check if the door is still shut and he’s not bursting through it.

I went to therapy yesterday still trying to pretend to myself I was ok, when my Moodscope scores have been saying the opposite for a while. No scores have been above 50 this whole month. I’m drained and I need rest. Dr K has been concerned about me for the past three weeks and she let me just cry yesterday in her office. I sobbed almost the whole time I was with her and that hasn’t happened since the early days of therapy when all I could do was cry. I felt so dissociative and I told her so, and I told her that I felt a lot of the time like I was pretending again. I read a blog post recently from Shedding Light on Darkness (thank you so much for writing that) that said something about lying to yourself. I’d been telling myself that I was fine with working straight after therapy on a Thursday and that I was processing it all, when really it comes out in dreams and I saw one of the weird shadows again, plus I hear the voics more regularly at the minute. I was falling down out of the sky with no parachute and trying to pretend I was flying.

It’s like all the stuff I’ve been trying to work on, to process through my system, has been being neatly unpackaged for an hour a week, given some thought, and then I’ve tried to stick it back into the box and leave therapy. Problem is, the minute you give memories and feelings like those any attention, they gain a life of their own and come crashing through your system, so I’ve had some horrible dreams recently, some horrible bad day, thoughts of self harm and suicide. I’m rambling in my speech again, and I can’t always think of the word I need to describe something important. I called the hall table the ‘ front desk’ the other day. Nobody thought it was a warning sign, they thought it was funny.

This is still a huge problem. I wrote a ‘How to Handle your PTSD-stricken daughter’ letter to my parents. I think Dad is getting it but the problem is he works a long way away from home all day, so basically it’s mum who takes care of me and she has no clue what she’s doing. Despite that letter, despite all the things I tell her on a day to day basis about PTSD and abusive relationships, despite the sliding scale I drew of my moods…

Yesterday after therapy, Dr K and I were drawing up a plan of action. She was worried about how unwell I was and how thin and gaunt I’d become. She wanted me to have a rest, but I knew how that would go down (and in fact, how it has gone down,) with my mum. When I left therapy I was daunted by the size of the task ahead: tell my mum and sister just how bad things were, ask for a week off, try and get a lock put on my door.

I told mum how bad I felt in a heartfelt cry for help, tears running down my cheeks and a huge pain in my chest. She blinked, looked at me, and said, “well I’m teaching now, and you will have to teach your second class.”

Then she walked off.

She wasn’t even going to bring it up that evening. She was going to try to jolly me along and make me smile again so I could go back to being the smiley smiley girl everyone wants to see.

I couldn’t deal with that. So me, my dad and her had a conversation about what the problem was, and I’m still getting nowhere with her.

It’s the same sort of stuff all over again. “Working makes you happy. Working gives you a purpose. Not working makes you depressed. Work is a distraction. Work is not what made you crash last time. Believe in yourself.”

So many problems with all that.

Working like I am doing at the minute does not make me happy. I hate it. I hate Mondays with a passion. I hate Tuesdays more. I drag myself through the working week like I have no legs and I can’t walk. I don’t sleep well Wednesday nights then I’m forced to get up on Thursday to get to therapy, which is the only highlight, and then basically I’m slamming all the tough emotions and feeling straight back into the box to teach again.

I don’t really want to teach for life. I’m not interested in examining dance any more, and I want to write as a career now, more than anything. I’m done with teaching already but I need it to be able to fund the set-up of a life with J maybe, or the start of my massage business. Not working does not make me depressed- I feel that actually having time to process all the tough emotions that happen to emerge after therapy HELPS. I’m more productive afterwards if I’m able to feel bad and curl up in a ball with the dog. Work is a huge distraction- so big that it takes up my whole fucking life and leave me with nothing else at the end of the day. I still have a limited amount of energy, and it’s all wasted on work and not on self-care. I’m so drained at the end of a day that I can barely muster the energy to call J.

Work is precisely what made me crash last time. I am so on edge and exhausted, and I feel like working has heaped strain on my head harder than not doing so would. I don’t mind if my mum used work as an escape, but I don’t want to do that any more because that’s what sent me into hospital last time. I’ll be there again soon if I don’t do something about it.

All the self-belief in the world will not help if I commit suicide (or attempt again) because I am simply doing too much to process what I’m digging up in therapy. I’m not going to lie to myself any more and pretend I can compromise and just nod my head and go along with whatever anyone says other than me because that’s what I did with him. Now look where I am. Mired in severe PTSD, exhausted, and nearly without options.

I want to be with J more than anything. I miss him so much, and I need his reassuring presence. Even just having him in the room with me sometimes improves my mood. I want sleep that heals, not that fills me full of nightmares. I want no voices in my head any more, they’re scaring me again. I also want to be listened to- still not having the lock put on my door because I self-harmed in the past, and regardless of the fact that several times I actually self-harmed in public with no locked doors, I still don’t get my wishes respected. I need a lock. I need to feel safe. I hate having to change in my room because there is no lock on the door and I feel vulnerable, and it doesn’t matter how many times I ask mum to knock, she will still barge in uninvited and pretend she is surprised when I’m literally just out of the shower in a towel. I have no fucking privacy- I hide all my old journals, because she’d read them without a second thought despite the fact I’m an adult woman.

This all needs to change or I will keep crashing down and someday I’ll burn out, and there will just be a shell left of me.

Dr K and I are working on all this and I think that we need to have a meeting with my mum at some point. She’s scared and cynical of Dr K. She says Dr K is planting the idea that I should never work in my head. Mum actively tried to get me some work last night with MY massage business that I haven’t even set up yet!! She was trying to book me an appointment to massage somebody on Saturday at two! I teach all day on a Saturday, and the massage business is MY business, not hers. I am so tired of trying to do what I want only for it to get subverted by my mum. The lock is a sticking point and so is this. I told her I couldn’t deal with any more work, yet here she is trying to set up more. It’s not just to build a future for me, it’s so I don’t feel any messy emotion near her and I’m that happy smiley FAKE girl ALL THE TIME. JUST LIKE HE WANTED.

Enough is enough. I’m taking the week off this week or I will end up in hospital. I’m exhausted and just need space, and I need to be understood.

Otherwise, I’ll end up back on the mental health ward again and it will be another three weeks before I’m allowed out.

Stupid black cloud.

Here we go again. Since Christmas I’ve been struggling with the choking fumes of the black cloud that binds me. Right now, I feel like I’m pulling myself through the mucky sludge that is life. I miss J more than I can say.

I’m dealing with a lot of bad shit in therapy and I saw my ex recently. Then, I felt pleased I had made it out without talking to him. I feel now like bad things are on their way and that I’m never free until I leave this country. Even then I won’t be entirely free. He still probably has some way of knowing where I am.

He’s stayed in the next town close to me whilst I’ve been living here. He’s been there probably so he can have that off-chance of bumping into me. All I want is to be happy, without PTSD, the memory problems, self-sabotage and agony that comes with it. I want J. I want a new life.

When do I get it? Do I get it?

I didn’t say before, but I’ve been thinking of suicide again in a distracted, half-baked thoughts of how it would be better just to sleep. Then I think of my puppy, of J… but then my thoughts trail off and I worry about how horrible everything on the inside of my head is and then I just wait for my eyes to shut and for sleep to come, or for my day to start, or for something to happen without me hating every second.

Apparently, I’m not doing as well as I’d thought. I hope this will pass, this feeling I have.

Interlude- Crawling feelings of shame, scars, intense self-loathing and suddenly a ray of bright hope.

My skin was crawling. I wanted to scrub my skin raw- so I did. I stung a little in the shower, sun burn on my back smarting against the bath sponge. Still the crawling. Was I unwell?

But there was no crawling during the day. The crawling started the minute I lay in bed.

I still sleep in the same room I was in when my ex insisted, as there was nobody in, that we had sex on the floor. I remember feeling completely uncomfortable with it and hating the fact that he picked then and there, on MY floor in MY room in my PARENTS’ house. And now, as I lay there, I realised- the crawling was body memories.

Now there is no more crawling, but I’ve had a very heavy period that’s sucked the energy out of me. I realised that I was suffering because I once had sex in a room that was meant to be my sanctuary- well, not for him. He ruined it.

But I am taking it back.

Soon, there will be a new bed. Soft and wide and inviting. There will be new cupboards, wardrobes, new storage spaces. Places for me to put my shoes so I see them properly. I’m finally having my room redone, and I will soon feel totally at home in my new, calm place, just for me.

I was looking in a mirror last week. Standing there, hurting so badly it made me want to cry. Instead of the usual muscular slim girl I see, I saw a fat scarred freak in a bikini she didn’t suit. The red scars on my legs gleamed, mocking me. My body, in the dim lights of the chop changing room, looked huge. I placed my hands over my eyes and I tried to ignore the dark passenger. That day, I had to take an extra dose of promazine to shut them up.

The upside?

I tried on the bikini at home and loved it. There was that muscular shape I’ve always known, and the bikini looked lovely. I was pleased that I had bought it and hadn’t freaked out. I vowed to myself to never call myself fat again, when I’m not. Most people call my skinny, if anything. I rarely get comments on my lack-of-weight now. I used to be teased about my stick-thin legs, frizzy hair and glasses. Now, I’m proud of the body I’ve honed through hard work.

I talked to Dr K today about all of this. She was concerned that the shame of the rape is still affecting me this way, and that I still suffer body memories. She was also saddened about my hatred of my scars. She has been polite and professional about them, and also very reassuring. I am not scarred badly- my skin heals lightning fast – but I can still see those telltale white lines that point out my fading addiction. I talked to her today about the nature of my self-harm: repress all emotion, it is all too overwhelming. Feed the dark passenger. Kill yourself.

Right now, I’m ecstatic because I am FINALLY going back to America to be with J, for nearly a month! I decided to book the flights and not give a damn what anyone else thought. I have the issues I’ve just written about, it’s true, but I am ok. I am getting through this. I have J to see and look forward to. I am going to see him for the first time since February! I can’t wait to hold him close again. He has to know I love him, and one day I will manage to say it properly. Not a scared little whisper, but I want to look into his eyes to tell him. He deserves that.

The voices? Right now, the dark passenger is drugged up, sedated. I am too, I’m very tired. I am staying in a different room in the house whilst I’m having my room done and I can’t wait to feel safe again.

 

Admitted- the beginning- Part Seven.

I said when I got out I would write up my journal entries. Here goes the first one.

April 24th, 17:31.

Voices are on at me still non-stop. Being admitted. The mental health nurse said that I was a concern. Dr K got me to come here because she was worried for me.

The RAID team got called (Rapid Response mental health team) and now I’m waiting for a bed.

The voices are so angry with me! They want me to die so much. I don’t want to kill myself but they keep wanting me to.

I really hope this fixes some of this or I might die.

April 25th, 00:59.

I have been admitted.

I’m absolutely exhausted. I want to sleep but my brain is on fire, so I’ll be writing until I feel a bit more tired.

I’ve been taken to A&E before, like I’ve written, but I’m not sure it’s ever been as stressful as this. I was in such a state with Dr K at my appointment, she taught me some breathing techniques with a relaxation technique, then she rang the RAID team to let them know I was heading across. She talked to mum, too, and we got to A&E (ER for my American readers). The lovely Triage nurse saw me and told me that they would keep me safe. That was nice. Right then, I felt anything but.

The good part about being assessed was that I didn’t have to keep saying all the bad stuff in front of my mum. I felt believed, respected and valued.

I’m in Ward 3- have my own room with a little ensuite toilet. Not sure how I managed that but it helps with the paranoia. It’s a mixed ward but the men can’t come down here, so that’s a bit relief.

I saw the consultant- she was very kind. She has taken my blood and done a full mental health assessment on me.

I rang R and J. Both were awesome. Told Mr Robot about all of this too, and Harley Quinn and Y.

Oh, I think I actually feel tired now. I will end up writing more tomorrow.