Mystery Blogger Award

Wow, I feel very appreciated at the moment! A big thank you to Lawrence who blogs over at Being Bipolar for nominating me for the Mystery Blogger Award! Lawrence lives in France and writes (in both English & French) about his life with the daily challenges of bipolar disorder. Make sure you head over to his blog and check it out!

What is Mystery Blogger Award?

“This is an award for amazing bloggers with indigenous posts. Their blog not only captivates; it inspires and motivates. They are one of the best out there, and they deserve every recognition they get. This award is also for bloggers who find fun and inspiration in blogging and they do it with so much love and passion.” – Okoto Enigma

Rules:

  • Thank whoever nominated you and include link to their blog
  • Tell your readers 3 things about yourself
  • Nominate 10-20 bloggers you feel deserve the award
  • Answer the questions from the person who nominated you
  • Ask your nominees 5 questions of your choice with one weird or funny one
  • Notify your nominees by commenting on their blog

 

Three Things About Me: (Kate)

  1. I prefer Pepsi Max to Coke Zero and I like it at room temperature not fridge temperature.
  2. I can say the alphabet backwards in less than 4 seconds – yeah, yeah I know it’s lame and I keep bringing it up, but I am a little bit low in the talent department okay!
  3. I am in my 30’s and still can’t cut in a straight line.

 


 

Lawrence’s Questions For Me:

How do you see a glass, half full or half empty?

Well, that REALLY depends on my mood at the time and who’s glass it is! I’d have to say both, I can be the most positive person on the planet in relation to anyone else in the world and even myself if I am manic, but when depression sets in I can be looking at a rapidly emptying cup with no chance of re-fills.

What do you prefer, to read a book or to listen to music?

Oh thats really difficult… I don’t want to pick because both words and music soothe my soul and carry me through the rollercoaster ride of mental illness. Gun to my head then I guess I would have to say listening to music because I can do it in more places – like while driving, running, trying to sleep etc.

What do you like most about mother nature?

Her absolute perfect balance when left undisturbed.

 

What is your favorite movie?

“Mr Right” the hilarious action/romantic comedy with Anna Kendrick and Sam Rockwell. I must have seen it a dozen times and it never fails to make me laugh no matter what mood I am in. If you haven’t watched it, watch it!

What do you like most about traveling?

The change of scenery and memories if I am with my family and if I am travelling alone then a long drive in the car is nice because I can listen to podcasts all the way through without being disturbed or put on my favourite music and sing my heart out without anyone else caring. Also the chance to only have to be responsible for myself – it’s very freeing.


My Nominees:
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  1. Revenge Of Eve
  2. Mental Health At Home
  3. The Smiles We Bear
  4. Family Furore 
  5. Therapy Bits
  6. Beckies Mental Mess
  7. Color Me Bipolar
  8. A Guy Called Bloke
  9. Pink Starburst Anxiety
  10. Girl In Therapy

 

My Questions:

  1. What is your favourite type of self-care?
  2. Do you own pets? And if so, how do they affect your mental health?
  3. If you had $5,000,000 to spend on something other than for your own personal gain, what would you spend it on?
  4. Are you a grudge holder or a forgiver?
  5. What is your favourite social media platform and why?

Living in a Strange & Foreign World

Right now I look around the room, the walls bend and curve oh so slightly in time to the pulse of the universe and shadows slip in and out of 3D formation. I am wondering how I got here, I’m lying on a bed that isn’t mine, in a house that isn’t mine in a world that doesn’t belong to me.

My ears ring faintly, a steady constant white noise that isn’t a bother, sometimes music plays from its staticky flow. My peripheral vision is fuzzy, I know that means the scene before me is not mine to view, yet I can’t seem to pull away from it. Shivers run through my body in a quest to change places with it’s rightful owner but we are so tired by the weight of gravity that nothing happens.

A clock ticks on the wall, intermittently taking my attention as I realise it is simply marking moments that are gone forever and doing so in infinite circles. It doesn’t care about the repetitive nature of its job, it just carries on indefinitely, around and around as all the while we watch on claiming that time is linear. 

There are no categories, boxes nor beginnings nor ends save for the ones we impose upon ourselves.

We are supposed to be taking on a business with the husband in July, I’m expected to be responsible for the secretarial side of things, learn how to use MYOB etc. A job that once upon a time I may have been able to do standing on my head (despite inevitably being bored to tears).

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It isn’t simply that I don’t want to do it, although that is also a factor, frankly I am simply not able to anymore. My attention is too divided, my ability to organise anything without a manically driven hyper focus has become foreign and impossible to recapture. In matters of daily function, I have trouble simply remembering to feed my fish and have a shower.

I can’t help run a business, especially one I have no interest in. My only discernible skill seems to be relating to folk through suitably adequate descriptions of my feelings as I experience them. On paper only of course, please don’t ask me to speak or form a logical thought about something in person, particularly if it lies outside the realm of my own personal experience and current emotion for I seem to have trouble speaking coherently and can no longer grasp new ideals nor even wholly remember previous dearly held beliefs unless I find myself delegated to the script writer position within the inner green room of my mind and I only have to watch as an actor magically speaks on my behalf.

It is though all my dreams have blurred with my memory and they are simply a faraway recollection of a story line that may or may not have ever actually belonged to me.

My presence in the world seems to lessen as each day passes. More and more often I find myself unsure of what reality is, or claims to be. 

Perhaps I am existing in a coma or as the grandiosity within would have me believe, ascending to a higher realm. It’s hard to know what to believe, they call it dissociation but perhaps it is more a realisation that I was never here at all, this, nothing more than a figment of our collective imagination.

Katie

Two Words

I was triggered unexpectedly by the movie playing on the television, it took my breath for just a second but it was hearing you utter those two words when I commented on my thoughts that broke me.

The ones that rang out spontaneously and in a spiteful tone I seldom hear from you. “Shut up!”

Two little words usually spoken only in jest were now suddenly crushing my heart as out of the blue as they overshadowed your lies of forgiveness. 

Two words that in this context told me you could never possibly understand the dark side of my soul. Words that stung as they reminded me that you think I deserve to feel pain for what I did to you that night, which I probably do, and yet try as I might that knowledge doesn’t make the memories and the pain of my own torturous thoughts more bearable, just more isolating.

Locked within my heart are vicious memories of paper cut traumas and the consequences I mostly brought upon myself, deep regret for hurting you in a past that I cannot change. Please believe that I wasn’t trying to damage you, I was trying to release you from the burden of my madness just as I was trying to release myself from its endless grasp. 

I couldn’t be inside my crowded head anymore.

Although years have now passed since that night and time has tried to heal those wounds, in the end I am still left with the madness and we are still left with those jagged scars that never quite seem to fade, unexplainable triggers picking at my scabs until they bleed once more. 

I can’t take away your anger and I have no right to, but I cannot simply ‘forget’ what bubbles just beneath the surface either. I continue to try and hide my pain from you for fear I will only hurt you more if I speak about it, fear that it will become about what I did to you, not what I felt, or what I feared – the things I do badly  need to work through- and I couldn’t ever expect you to understand that.

I have changed since that night, I know more about myself now, I understand that I am a vessel with many drivers all trying to work together, learning what first brought us into the darkness, processing and understanding these experiences as lessons in order to move forward and develop an intergrated identity.

You? Well you are the same supportive, intelligent kind man I fell in love with, only now you carry around a haunted look of hurt in your eyes.

As the last of the blue washes from the ends of my hair and into my heart, my soul aches with exhausted heaviness for I cannot undo what I have done.

You lost your wife that day,

she would never be the same.

You wanted someone to pay,

You needed something to blame.

And yet you stayed by my side,

Trying to keep me safe,

Protecting me from a system 

That had stolen your trust away.

I’m sorry that I hurt you,

 and I’m also sorry that I lived.

Because I dragged out an inevitable ending

Which never let you grieve.

Sorry for the pain of trying to leave you,

Which I could never take away.

And also the pain of holding onto you,

Obligating you to stay.

They say that if you love them,

you should probably set them free,

But this time when I go, 

I know you won’t forgive me.

These aren’t words to defend my actions,

More of an apology,

You didn’t deserve to hurt, 

I wanted us both to be free.

 

* Just a quick note to say all is okay, this was something that happened the other day and writing it out helped ease the feeling, I just hadn’t actually shared it until today. xoxo

The Many Me’s & Finally Fighting Back

Yesterday I had what I could class as one of the most brief but intense anxiety attacks of my life. What made it unusual was the cause and the fact that it wasn’t really mine but that of one of “The Others”. I want to tell you about it, but you are going to have to keep an open mind because it’s a little bit on the weird side. My regular readers know that along with Bipolar Disorder, I also suffer from some issues with dissociation and have different ‘parts’ which I call ‘The Others’ there are quite a few of them some are like different versions of the ‘original me’ and some are totally different, we sort of help ‘run my body’ together…

New here? I know I sound crazy! I guess I am (all the best people are) but it’s okay, I promise, just stay with me… – Kate

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Firstly, I am/ we are not diagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder but I guess what happens to me/us is quite similar in nature and our psychiatrist is working closely with us to help figure it out and manage it. One day when we have it figured it out I will give you all more details, but honestly it’s really confusing for us to understand and we are having a lot of trouble with traumatic memories re-surfacing at the moment that we don’t understand or that are just frightening. Please know that we all contribute to this blog, most of the posts are a collaboration between myself (Suzi) and Katie (original body owner) or just by Kate (she’s the more ‘out there’ one of us particularly when she’s manic- she prefers the term fun, I say annoying, ahem.) The blog entries that are more poetic or spiritual in nature and get comments about being ‘well written’ are usually stories of what is felt by everyone but they are mostly written through Hannah, (she has a way with words) Hannah doesn’t speak or use our body, she lives happily ever after off in the either somewhere spouting occasional words of wisdom. We don’t usually sign off individually, we will usually use the terms ‘I’ and ‘me’, as it’s just easier anyway, most of the posts are relating to bipolar anyway and how it affects us. The three of us (Hannah is seperate) kind of ‘run the show’ or ‘host’ and look at this blog as all of ours.

– Suzi


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Still here? Wow! Thanks for that, its probably a lot to take in for some people. Stigma of course is ever present and there is unfortunately more of it aimed at this kind of ‘crazy’ than at people with only the Bipolar kind of ‘crazy’ hence the reason I don’t usually mention it. But this morning I told Twitter quite forcefully that I am an honest person and why that is important so I should probably practise what I preach for once. Also, the wonderful blogger extraordinaire Eve from “Revenge Of Eve” gave me a massive plug this morning which was extremely flattering and centred around my ‘rawness and honesty’, so I have a reputation to live up to and thus, we are throwing caution to the wind and letting it all hang out. Also, a little FYI – for those that follow us on Twitter, 99% of tweets are by me (Kate) and the 1% that isn’t will be Katie and the people she talks to usually know its her or she tells them.


(The following which is the actual post for today has been written by Katie) 

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I had a sudden memory that was triggered from seeing an image of a journal in a movie, its content reminded me of the one I had kept with me when I was in hospital for depression and suicidal ideation back in 2015. One night in the hospital the journal, which I had left on my bedside table, suddenly went missing. The implications of the journal being read seemed insurmountable and so rather than simply asking the nurses if anyone had seen it, I freaked out and overdosed on some medication that I had previously smuggled into the hospital with me you know, ‘just in case’.

I have always struggled with the fact that I went in there to get better and yet had prepared a ‘plan B’, packed it and kept it concealed whilst there. I never understood why self sabotaging like this made me feel protected, I counter intuitively felt that I would surely die if I didn’t have the safety blanket of my ‘plan B’ with me. Then the journal disappeared. Among poetry and details about the boredom of psychiatric incarceration, the journal was also filled with pages and pages of self directed hate speech, large scrawled words of abuse and anger written around and around in circles and strange patterns. I didn’t remember putting those things into it when I had written my poetry and notes, I didn’t recognise the writing and yet there were secrets nobody else could have known scattered among the oddly formed bitter truths and wild words that I believed about myself, so I guessed I must have done it.

Seeing the journal on the movie had suddenly reminded exactly what was in that journal, I had sort of forgotten about it, I had remembered the poetry and that anxiety over the missing journal had led to the overdose, but I forgot about those other pages until that moment. I suddenly connected the dots and realised that Bel was the one who had written those things, it gave away her position of power to me, it proved her existence and it was she who had felt like her very being was based around the need to protect it, not me.

At that moment I started feeling Bel’s presence around me and the feeling of extreme fear about having a secret revealed overcame me. It was the same feeling from that night in the hospital and I realised she had actually been the one to take that overdose, not me. I guess I already knew she had planted it, but she had convinced me that it was the best thing to do and I was easily convinced. Bel had always stood up for me, even though she was my harshest critic I knew that she knew what was best for me so I went along with it. We had agreed that it was just a ‘plan B’ incase things got too rough. I think deep down I didn’t expect to come home again even though when I went into the hospital initially it was for help, I wanted to stay alive for my family.

She doesn’t accept my husband and children as her family in anyway, she operates alone, except for me, always has. She didn’t harbour the same guilt I did and now that I see it, of course she was the one who grabbed the tablets and she is the one who took them.

I was surprised by this sudden revelation but not upset by it at all, if anything I thought it was interesting and slightly empowering, it eased the guilt a little and it felt of epiphany level importance. But I was also gripped by a sudden feeling that I wouldn’t remember it later, so naturally, I went to write it down. Also, I thought if I wrote it out it would really help me figure it out more. But as I started to get up (i’d been lying in bed watching the movie) I felt myself being “blocked” that happens if I go to do something or say something that one of “The Others” doesn’t want me to do or say.

When I am ‘blocked’ its like a forcefield is stopping me and I generally have to just give up on what I am trying to do and move on, but this time I was desperate to write it out quickly and so grabbed my phone off the bedside table to type it on the notepad. All of a sudden I felt myself starting to dissociate, my vision tunnelled and the world around distorted, I could feel myself being ‘pulled back’ and my fingers started shaking violently and they simply wouldn’t type on my iPhone screen, my hands were useless.

Bel was right on me, she was flipping out and really didn’t want me to type it, she wanted me to forget about it and she was trying with all her might to pull me back. I just couldn’t understand why this was so bad for her to admit. I now know something about Bel that I hadn’t known in previous times when she was being abusive or blocking me from doing things though, I knew she wasn’t an adult, and I knew she was acting this way because she was frightened, not because she was more powerful or that she was right and I was wrong like I had always felt before.

This was not the same feeling as an anxiety attack (well not ones I have had) but that’s probably my best reference for people to try and understand it), I knew it was Bel causing it and I could feel her fear overwhelming me the same way it had back in the hospital, the same way it had at other points in our life.

In all the years she has been near, I have done what I was told and let her take over at her will, even if I haven’t felt quite right about it. She was always the one who burns or cuts me, the strongest voice of verbal abuse and ill will in my head and yet I have never stood up to her because she seemed so, so powerful – and sometimes I really believed that she was my only friend.

So, this time I did something I have never done to Bel before, I fought back.

Ive never felt anything like her strength. It felt like she had grabbed me internally by the stomach and was twisting it and pulling it out of my body towards the floor and then pushing down on my chest at the same time as she frantically screamed NO!  The pain of the moment was sheer guttural pressure, not at all sharp, it reminded me of vomiting or that moment when you are giving birth and your body takes over and pushes for you leaving you powerless and possessed. It was intense, innate and completely uncontrollable.

The knowledge that she was a teenager gave me a lot of power because this time I saw her as a hurting adolescent rather than an overbearing expression of the devil incarnate and it gave me the strength to try to push back. She backed off a bit but instead of trying to keep typing which seemed futile I hit the record button on my phone camera and tried to blurt out what was going on that way, I was scared of being blocked out completely before I could record it and The Other’s then forgetting the whole thing had happened.

Now I have it on video, well sort of, it mostly looks like a video of me ugly crying and trying to blurt out the short version of what had happened while it was still kind of happening, but I got the gist of it out and then I felt someone else (?) helping me push her back further and then calm us. One day if everyone gives permission and it could possibly help someone else I might post that video snippet on here, but at this point its very raw and deeply personal.

I wrote to my psychiatrist straight after and told her what happened and while I was typing to her Bel was pulling at me again begging not to be revealed, but not as violently, she seemed defeated. It took hours for us all to calm down, I’d like to say a big thank you to the Twitter people who helped us with supportive words and jokes afterwards too – the online mental health community really is wonderful!

Bel is not really bothering me at I write this now, although I can feel her unhappy presence I think its layered with a sense of acceptance too. She’s officially been ‘outed’ and now we have to finally deal with our ‘relationship’. We have had a tumultuous journey together and I need to make peace with her and have her accept that I am now on the same level as her and she can’t control me anymore because this has gone on for too long and is overwhelmingly exhausting for both of us.


 

Run, Run, As Fast As You Can

*My intent here is NOT to glamorise suicide, I am NOT saying that it is ever okay, there are ALWAYS other options. I am just saying that I certainly UNDERSTAND why people reach a point where they decide to take their own lives and the reasons why I did.

I’ve always run away from my problems, especially any that involved conflict. Confrontation scares me more than anything, it always has. My Mother in law made and off the cuff remark over lunch a while ago where she referred to my suicide attempt back in 2015 as ‘running away again’, it was the ‘again’ that got me. Then she kept hinting that I don’t know how lucky I am. Her saying that made part of me frustrated and angry and part of me want to cry and flee from the restaurant, proving her point entirely.

If my suicide attempt was running away, which I suppose it technically was, it was running away from my internal life, not my external life. I KNOW that I have a good external life, I have an amazing life!

On paper.

Was I taking the easy way out? Maybe, but what are we comparing ‘easier’ to? What is hard enough to be viewed as acceptable for this line to be crossed? If someone had a stroke and was “locked in” so to speak, is it okay then? I know my mother in law has previously stated that she feels that she would rather be dead than live like that.

See, with Mental Illness, it’s kind of the same thing only reversed. My body might work, but my mind is broken, sometimes broken so badly that I feel like I am essentially ‘locked out’. Just because you can’t see a ‘good reason’ for my pain, it doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist, try living in my head for a week!

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We seem to so readily accept that we can’t think our way out of a physical problem, thinking positive thoughts won’t mend that bone sticking through your leg, you’re going to need surgery. But we seem to believe that due to its location, we must be able to think our way out of a mental illness. But it doesn’t work that way! Can we think our way out of negative thoughts? To a certain extent, yes, absolutely! Particularly if they are just visiting and haven’t become drug addicted squatters.

Bipolar Depression is a bit like RSI of the mind, the negative thoughts do more and more damage over time, positivity and affirmations are like the gels and creams for your joints, they might help for a bit, but overtime if the strain causing the issue is still there your neural pathways wear down more and more making it harder and harder to treat. The joy about bipolar, at least in my experience, is the depressions lift and give us a reprieve but they come back like muscle memory and often harder and faster each time.

‘Things will always get better’. Yes, things can and will change, such is the nature of life. Physical situations may improve, feelings may change too, but my decision to give up on life wasn’t made lightly. It wasn’t because the world got too hard for me to bother with one day so I decided it was easier to die. Sure the world throws bad things at you sometimes and some poor people seem to get more pieces of that pie than others…

But new things, things that you would never want to be without experiencing will always end up growing from the ashes of despair. I knew that, then and I possibly could have gotten through a life change or temporary sadness back then because there is always some sort of way to escape from that.

Living in my mind is what felt impossible, I became too difficult for myself to handle, 24/7 endless grating self hatred, intrusive thoughts and no matter how hard I tried over the years to change myself, I could never run away from me. No matter what, I was always still right there.

Unfortunately, these were parts of me that nobody else saw, there were abusers living with me from whom I could not escape, those abusers took it in turns to torment me in various creative ways, day in, day out for over 25years.

When your abusers live inside your mind, when only you can see and hear them, when they are with you when you wake up, when you go to sleep, in your most intimate moments, infiltrating your dreams with their hateful taunts and venomous suggestions. Sometimes it feels like the only possible escape is a permanent one.

It was out of guilt most days that I took the next breath, yes, it has always been guilt and not fear that makes me step back from the cliff edge, put the lid back on the bottle or let the train go past. Guilt for potentially hurting the people that love me the most and yet could never possibly understand, the people I would never want to be able to understand.

Long term abuse, while you can become used to its presence, gradually wears you down until one day you realise that you now only watch yourself from above as what is left of your soul shatters into dust.

Finally the guilt that kept you alive for so long dissolves in the pain of living, and in an effort to find a moment of peace, a second of silence, you decide to leave your abusers for good. You take that final step off the cliff edge of freedom, swallow those pills or pull that trigger.

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In that moment that I knew the deed had been done, there was a flood of simultaneous relief for knowing I was free and intense grief for a life lost, my lost life. Sometimes you wake up again like I did, sometimes you don’t.

Despite how I feel when the darkness sets in again, I am lucky that I woke up. The butterfly effect of me being in the world alone is enough to make a difference to someone, somewhere even if it doesn’t always feel like it.

I wish that nobody knew what it feels like to hate yourself with such intensity that compliments burn like fire, yet flames no longer hurt you. Yet I am far from alone.

I know within myself that I am equivalent to Hitler, but when my psychiatrist asks me what I have done that is so bad, I can’t answer her because I don’t know. I just know that I am inherently evil, stupid, ungrateful, pathetic and an embarrassment. I know this because I feel it in my bones and I have been dutifully told so multiple times a day every single day for as long as I can remember.

Those that tell me these things laugh at my every incompetence, sarcastically belittle my every action, my every thought.They read my mind, confuse my thoughts, make me doubt my own eyes. They threaten to hurt me physically, sometimes they do. It feels like they can’t ever be brought down, they can’t be stopped and sometimes I think nor should they; because deep down, I still believe they are right.

Nowadays though, I have something I never had before. I have help, real help, from a psychiatrist who genuinely cares. She knows my deepest secrets and darkest thoughts. She makes me feel safe, she makes me feel like I might one day be able to conquer my demons, or at least learn how to ignore them, she gives me something I had never had before, she gives me hope.

All we need is hope.

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Song Off!

My first thought when the wonderful Eve from  ‘Revenge Of Eve‘ challenged me to a ‘Song off’ was “Oh God, this doesn’t involve Karaoke does it?” Which may have been fun for me but not so much for my neighbours, or for you guys!

Luckily, you can put away your ear muffs and I will put away my hair brush because it doesn’t involve me singing a word, instead the aim here is to ‘out song’ your nominator by choosing a better one. Kind of like a Pitch Perfect riff off with less a’cappella?

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The Rules:
• Choose a song that beats the nominators choice…doesn’t matter if its a cover, it’s about performance, lyrics and feeling the groove! Name it!
• Nominate 3 fellow bloggers (let them know you’ve challenged them).
• Add the previous song choice so that bloggers can see how it compares to what you’ve picked to beat it.
• Add a fourth genre to the mix (the idea is that the nominee picks three out of the 4 genres to song-off with you) adding to the variety.


Genre 1: Love Song

 

Eve’s choice: All of Me – John Legend

Damn it Eve, you beat me to it – I don’t know if I can fight you here! This particular song is one I hated for some reason the first few times I heard it, perhaps because I’m not a love song fan in general or perhaps just because I took the terms ‘imperfect’ and ‘curvy’ totally out of context as I was in the midst of an Anorexia relapse at the time… Anyway, these days Hubby said it reminds him of our relationship and he thinks of me every time he hears it. I would be inclined to agree with him ❤


Genre 2: Grunge

 

Eve’s choice: Loser – Beck

My Choice: “Today” – The Smashing Pumpkins

This one nostalgically takes me straight back to the best parts of my teenage years 🙂

 


Genre 3:  Classic Rock

Eve’s choice:  American Woman – The Who

My Choice:  “Black Sally Lane” – Night Train

I love this, just sits nicely with me for some reason… Plus there is a “Black Sally Lane” not too far from where I live which is kinda cool.

 

 


Genre 4:  Rap

My Choice: “Deja Vu” – Eminem

This is a really relatable song for me, the following clip just has the music and the words.

 


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My Nominees Are:

  1. Ryan Heffernan
  2. Edenland
  3. Jamoalki 

Jeff, Undrugged.

“So, why don’t you want to take the medication?”

1000 reasons I could possibly legitimise my decision to not medicate my Bipolar Disorder with swirl through my brain as I try and find one that you will accept, something you can understand.

“Side effects…? Sleepiness, weight gain, zombie stupor” etc, etc.

They too are factors, but they aren’t what is really holding me back and I don’t know how to explain myself to you when you can’t possibly understand the truth.

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You see, I can’t really understand the truth either, because in this case the truth doesn’t make sense, but truth is sometimes stranger than fiction and the truth is that if I do take those pills he will destroy me.

The fact that intellectually I can see how my truth looks, well unlikely, impossible even – only makes it harder to quantify, harder to explain because I know in my heart of hearts that it’s absolutely real and I know because I have experienced it. 

“Jeff”, the guy with the unsuitably friendly name who appears it seems, only to me and ‘The Others’ that live in my head. Jeff who oozes evil from his core, Jeff who I repeatedly question might actually be the devil himself even though I don’t believe in the devil. Jeff let me know in no uncertain terms that he can, and will, end not just my own life but the lives of those I love, should I dare to try and banish him again by taking those forbidden pills.

You see, I took the medication once before after he had shown himself to me and suddenly he disappeared, giving what I believed to be confirmation of the theory that he never really was to begin with. 

So why won’t I take them now? I know, I know it sounds ludicrous, believe me the whole thing feels insane to me too, I mean surely if the pills will make him disappear then obviously I should take the pills and then he can’t bother me, easy! It makes perfect sense! 

Except that won’t work. He has told me with an evil chuckle that chills your soul, the pills don’t actually remove him from existence nor do they change his powers, they simply leave me, personally, unable to see or have communication with him. Apparently, if I can’t see him, and in turn do what ever his bidding is, he will make me suffer and I won’t be able to prevent him or even know that he’s coming until it’s too late.

To put it in terms you, or at least the arachnophobic types amongst you, may more easily understand…

It’s like having a giant venomous spider in the room, if you can see him in the corner you can plan your next move rather than just running away screaming as fast as possible, visibility means you have some control over what happens next. But if you know that giant hairy legged beast is still in the room but he has disappeared from view like a creepy crawly poltergeist and he could be anywhere…. Fuck that! You’re absolutely moving out of the house until he’s found and dealt with by someone else, because who knows where and when he might pop up and sink his deadly fangs into you? 

Jeff is my venomous spider. I don’t know what he actually is exactly, I don’t know if he is a malevolent spirit, a demon, an alter, a parallel version of me from a past life or simply a very powerful and realistic hallucination. 

I do know that whatever he is, he has killed before. He has shown me the detailed horror of taking a human life in cold blood as if it were a memory of my very own, a memory that wakes me sweating from sleep some nights leaving me filled with unfathomable guilt for his actions when he has none at all, he just laughs at the whole god foresaken spectacle and feels immensely powerful for it.

One at this point would assume that I could still easily poison him away with those royal blue capsules of psychotropic promise in my medicine cabinet, but you see I battled with him once, and I lost.

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I was in a mixed manic episode and arguably quite unwell, I decided I would take the antipsychotics prescribed to me that morning as soon as I got home and he didn’t like it, told me if I killed him, he’d kill me. I began openly expressing my doubt in his existence accusing him of being a hallucination and letting him know that I was suicidal anyway so it really didn’t matter to me if he killed me. 

This battle of wills occurred while I was driving with a sleeping child in the back seat, it was a discussion that took place telepathically without audible words until I said firmly out loud “No, I’m just not dealing with you anymore” and in that moment I heard him speak out loud too “I own you” he growled and then proved it to me by suddenly forcing my arm turning the steering wheel hard to the right and holding it there for just a few seconds but a few seconds long enough to catapult me onto the other side of the road and scare the shit out of me.

Luckily there was no car coming opposite and heart beating through my chest I was able to regain control of the car before crashing into the trees. My daughter didn’t even wake.

Jeff didn’t care that my child was in that car, he wanted to prove that he could control my body and he did. He’s a dangerous psychopath and while I haven’t had him contact me in quite a while or even felt his presence nearby, the “what if’s” are too frightening and I haven’t been willing to take the risk of taking medication since. 

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