Domestic abuse

Something that has been on my mind a bit is the memories of domestic abuse .

I remarried in my early twenties to someone after a 2 year relationship. He was volatile, I knew that already. I knew he could be controlling but never in the sense of applying that to me. He was actually quite understanding of my wilder side, but any form of authority sent him into a blind rebellion, even if there was nothing to rebel against he would stubbornly take every tiny detail and squeeze it and turn it and reshape it until it fit his point exactly.

He lived with me , at that time we were in a local authorities housing. The officials who had to deal with him utterly detested him, I know this to be true as I knew someone who worked there… the police hated him, the parking officers hated him and everyone in between. You couldn’t tell what mood he would be in from morning to the afternoon to evening, he used to work usually quite late or overnight and it was impossible to guess his mood. We had our arguments on occasion but I excused his often unacceptable behaviour , the mental pressure and emotional dysfunction knowing that sometimes my behaviour was nothing to be proud of.

Then we married. Almost immediately his attitude towards me and my oldest daughter started to change. Within a few weeks we had our first physical fight – I was so shocked. He attacked me from behind , punching me in the head and yanking me around by my hair while I had my year old daughter in my arms, walking beside a busy road. The physical pain was nothing compared to the shock that he would risk our daughter in that way.

That signalled a pretty drastic change in our relationship. Broken bones, black eyes, split lips and a fair bit of hair pulled out followed, a small piece of one eye socket eventually worked its way out a couple of years later which was really quite weirdly fascinating… but I eventually couldn’t let the kids see this going on, he was getting increasingly nasty to them, especially my oldest and after he hit her on her birthday I had enough, but what made me kick him out was after he bit her then made her tell me what he’d done and show me the huge bruise his teeth had left . She was 9. The emotional abuse was worse than anything, my daughter hadn’t told me how nasty he was when I was out and as an extremely intelligent manipulator things were worse for us all than I realised

I will never forgive myself for trying to allow him to be a father to the kids after we split. I met someone else and although we didn’t enter a relationship for some months he was so supportive of me. This just made the abuse from my ex step up further. He broke into the house usually at least twice a week, sometimes more. My older daughter once woke me in a panic to say he had been in their room since 6 am. He was very drunk. When I ran downstairs to confront him I found him drinking tea and putting breakfast cereal in a bowl. Such a totally mundane action, it was shockingly bizarre. Whenever I called the police several always turned up in stab vests with truncheons ready. That day of the breakfast cereal it took 6 of them to get him on the floor and out into a squad car, this while I was trying to get the kids ready and on the school bus.

He tried to kill me a couple of times, stalked me, phoned me describing how he was self harming for hours on end, sometimes 6 hours on the phone, more than once a day. He kidnapped the kids telling them they would never see me again, driving off with them banging on the back window of the car screaming mummy mummy.

He took me to court every chance he could devise, often not turning up to defend his case

Many other things happened . He was sectioned but broke out of a secure ward, the police advised me to disappear until he was found again. There were many many other incidents . It went on for nearly 2 years before he was finally stopped by getting beaten up.

I will never forgive myself for trying to help him. For believing – at first – he had a right to see his children . That they had a right – at first -to see him and his family. That I broke the promise made in our marriage vows, In sickness and in health.

Was it my fault for sending mixed messages? Are my children’s mental health problems now my fault? What the fuck was I doing? I wasn’t a saint throughout, fighting back when he attacked me became normal.

There are countless stories like mine. I have never told his story publicly before , frankly I’m terrified that even now he will somehow find me out, use this to hurt us, that I have made a massive mistake writing this.

I’ve been over it again and again, for years. I’m trying to get it out of me, make sense of who created the heartbreaking problems, how I could have let this happen. How I could have failed so badly.

I know rationally it’s not ” my fault ”

Since when were feelings – be they of failure, of guilt or anything else – always rational.

Maybe finally taking control of the unease, fronting it, facing the fear and telling it where to go will be a step away from it.

There is someone there for you – MH Crisis Angels

Have you ever felt no one listens? Do you just want someone to talk to?

Over the last few weeks I have found myself involved with a group who offer fantastic peer support . We offer a friendly, non judgemental, confidential place for you to talk about your problems, no matter how big or how small they seem to you.

This group are called Mental Health Crisis Angels. They came about as a lovely lady https://twitter.com/My_SimpleMind had the idea of offering somewhere for people who are struggling in life to come to and talk to peers who have been through mental health issues themselves, to talk to people who have been in that place and understand. The Crisis Angels have already brought comfort to many people, just by being there and talking.

My Simple Mind also has a great blog https://mysimplemind.home.blog/ where you can find out more about her and the https://twitter.com/MHCrisisAngels MH Crisis Angels.

Please take a look, follow and if you or anyone you know needs a place to talk about anything at all this is a great place to go.

You are not a burden, you are not a problem. You do deserve care. Visit us. We will listen

Pilgrim

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Ffs

Yesterday I was finishing off a blog post that I had put quite a bit of myself into.

Then I accidentally deleted the post. I was so upset . Wasted all that time writing then another 2 hours trying to get it back. I hate wasting time like that, because I tend to procrastinate anyway which just makes it worse.

It’s been a really hard week after the sudden death of someone close. Feeling upset about something so trivial after a huge emotional blow seems so disrespectful which is upsetting in itself. It’s hard to remember it’s not surprising that small things seem to take on a bigger impact than they deserve, it’s not surprising that my mind seems to be working in fits and starts .

The impact of this death on my family has been huge. It’s my job as a parent and family member to put the family and friends first, to be a support and sounding board, to listen and offer what small comfort is possible, to hold , to have understanding of each persons individual reactions, memories and feelings, each persons pain and guilt but also the laughs and recollection of the many happy times shared.

It’s normal for me to tend to my own self care last. That’s something that has been happening for many years. But at the moment it’s not helpful for me to neglect my own health – unfortunately I’m unable to change the habit of so many years. I know the cycle very well, the result of me giving everything to everyone is going to end in a crash for me and my trying to hide the extent of my failure to cope.

The balance of pain and anxiety, worthlessness and self loathing against positivity is out of proportion.

Being in a dark place again is becoming overwhelming, the inability to concentrate and focus, the feelings of failure when another day passes without managing to cope with the general things in life that build up if we don’t get them done. My coping mechanism is beginning to break again.

I’m trying to even out the scales of life a bit. The recent death has weighed heavily and joined with the weight of the normal problems in my life but I’m now trying to even things out a bit. I notice the storm clouds are dark but there is beauty and majesty there too. I see how the grass recovers to stand again after being bent, bruised, crushed against the cold hard ground, even after being broken . I see the beauty and future in the sunrise but also the richness and promise of change and moving forward in the sunset. The silent company and unconditional undemanding love I have around me from my animals has always been immensely important and such a comfort.

I hope to be able to cope with the latest challenge, I hope to be able to be the unending support at any hour of the day or night that I need to be. Mostly I hope to be able to accept this pain and uncertainty with strength to spare.

Depression…

Feeling that soul sucking dark hole hovering around the edges of my awareness, following my every step, lurking , waiting to trap me . Making my anxiety burn brighter as I know it’s there, it’s going to suck at my steps as I pass. Trying to keep my head up and keep walking to the love of life I know I have but I’m scared.

It’s right there with me, matching my stride and even though I know it’s there it’s going to get me, catch up while I’m busy trying to live and pretend it’s not malignant.

I feel like I’m trying to appease it, feeding it bits of my brightness, smiling and laughing over the top of it – but when it gets me I know it’s going to hurt, it’s going to be bad and I can’t avoid it or pretend it’s finally my friend and isn’t going to smash my life and my dreams.

Again.

I’m not sure if I am going to be able to get up after this one, but I feel this way every time. I’m so tired of fighting, but I say that every time and tired or not the inevitability of it flooding me is dragging at my steps.

It’s going to wait until I have taken my eye off it and it’s going to drown me, like it always does.

This time I might have something to help me cling on. There maybe a circle of people who know this enemy. They might be able to help me keep my head above the foul stuff siphoning off my optimism, there may be a strength I can lean on a very little bit.

I have looked for some support online, I have found first one, then two, then a few more people who may have enough strength at the moment to lend me a little of theirs in bits and pieces. People that might care, a little.

Problem I have is in reaching out and asking for help. I can’t do it. I’m so worried about appearing weak – or vulnerable. Then it’s so tiring explaining how I feel, why I feel this way . Exhausting to reassure the people offering help that they have made a difference.

Meeting the expectations and hopes that the people that care have, that I’m feeling better,

Not worrying those that really love me is a very deep seated problem that I need therapy for, there’s a lot behind that and that in itself causes some terrible anxiety.

Hoping I can hide from it for a while longer, so I don’t have to face it at all. I know it’s not realistic but I can’t break the cycle.

I need to help myself and keep the real picture in my mind. I need to breathe.

I’ll go and look for techniques to practice to get me through the next few minutes, then that leads to hours and that on to days.

But I can’t hide forever and I just don’t know how to handle the malignant filth locked inside me that causes all this.

Writing helps me keep it contained but it’s spilling over , swelling and blurring the lines.

I hate this.

Today I am confused.

I know I wrote a bit already about living on medication, being easily distracted and the brain fog that comes with chronic pain , fatigue and medication.

Today, along with that I’m worried over issues that are very personal to me. I have a very sick horse who is like a member of my family in the vet hospital at the moment. It is hurting that there is nothing I can do, nothing at all that will make any difference. It really bothers me that I have no control over what happens to her now and I must rely on the vet. I have faith in the vet and trust them, it just hurts that I can’t do anything.

That is related to a deeper fear, loss of control…

Also on today’s menu we have fear of letting down the family because of brain fog interfering with normal housekeeping duties, a hearty main course of pain, served with fatigue and a side order of mess from not tidying enough. We will follow that with a fine dessert of the frustration of losing ideas and memories to brain damage and brain fog.

There is some relationship here with this lose of control thing, to not being self sufficient and losing interest in looking after myself, having no Me Time and taking pride in my appearance.

I’m losing impetus to getting started to enjoy my world . There’s always the guilt trip I take myself on and lack of compassion for myself because I feel I’m not making the most of what life has to offer. I have had near death experiences and I am frustrated with myself for not making every day count.

Procrastinating and not learning a lesson from my own ideas to beat it seriously annoys me!

I have been in a bad way mentally but am getting my act back together. Until the next time at least .

I have been spending some time in a place very very dear to me and allowing my surroundings to wash over me, bringing peace, tranquility, sense of self and appreciating what this place gives me.

I wonder if without that would I be able to cope with my present situation?

My thoughts are everywhere, spread wide and jumping from one thing to another without completion and it leaves me edgy, nervous with no real focus on what is the thing that needs addressing, where to start to smooth some of the jagged edges.

I want to reach out to make a connection somewhere but the same old soul sucking blanket creeps over me, am I worth anyone’s time?

When will I be found out I’m not anything, that I’m me? When do I stop checking around, behind, ahead for the next attack on my world, when I get exposed as not being good enough or having made a huge mistake somewhere that I didn’t realise about?

I know I’m not the only one that feels like this but it makes you feel lonely. Alone and looking in from the outside.

I hope to find some support , understanding and backup on this journey but I’m just going to keep trying to steadily push forward and gain some more understanding of what’s happening to me and so many others

Pilgrim

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Why do I compare myself, my abilities and my life to how others portray themselves…

How many times have I compared myself to others social media success stories? Those ones where you know the owner of those stories is bullshitting?

The constant bright shiny status updates that make me feel inadequate and less. Feel like giving up and I’m not sure what I should be giving up – give up some nameless unspoken competition? Why not in a good way, why more like there’s no point trying because no matter what I do it will never match up to those bright twinkling statuses. I’m not worth anyone’s time and I’m smaller, somehow less me and somehow dingy and dirty.

Even the ones that I know are a smooth featureless constant stream of false declarations “look at me, my life is most wondrous , sprinkled with fairy dust and pure gold glitter “ they still get to me somehow, even though I know they aren’t quite as blissfully happy as they project…

I still feel as though somehow they have achieved something I’ve missed, something I’ve looked at from the outside,something I’ve been reaching for but never quite grasped as it slips away again and I submerge under the wave of depression, waiting for the time I’ll roll back up again to thrash around frantically trying to grab that slippery glittery beast that is called Happiness. Success. Achievement. The admiration that others appear to expect, to bask in…

I didn’t want to be in any competition. Don’t want to compete with other’s loveliness , didn’t set out to best anyone else. I’m not interested in being someone else, in projecting a false impression of my life, pretending to be something I’m not.

So why do I still find myself sometimes comparing?

I want to work on acceptance of my good qualities as well as getting a grip on the bad. Balance and harmony are within reach, I just need to learn how to accept and allow them.

Xx

Effects of medication

Today I wanted to write about the effects of living with taking lots of medication.

First though, before I start waffling I’d like to say something. I have recently been in a hard place mentally, been struggling with the demons of depression and have had some trouble getting the anxiety under control…

Thank you Gem @GemsQuirkyGemsQuirky for reaching out and touching me when it mattered.This girl is a star and does a great podcast too!

So, living on medication. I take a fair few medications for one thing or another ( and another. And another. And anoth… Ah, you know ) so I do understand how it feels to spend your days in a cloud. What I don’t quite get is the change from one day to the next how these drugs affect me – some days I feel quite with it, fairly on the ball. Other days I’m so far off the ball Im not too sure there ever was a ball – was I imaging the ball? Maybe the ball is off having a cup of tea with the plot coz I lost that too.

Ok, I knew it. Here’s where the waffle starts now, please feel free to laugh.

I heard someone mention brain fog the other day. Oh yes, I feel that lady’s point. Brain fog, it’s a state I find myself in frequently. When you feel as if you ( just you ) are looking out through a thick layer of fog that’s wrapped around you, you’re breathing it in and it’s moulded around your contours, weighing you down.

I haven’t ever spoken to my doctor about this. I wonder what he’d say?

I don’t want the hassle of trying to cope with the effects of changing my meds. I’ve no clue which one causes brain fog and fatigue- most of them probably. There must be some sort of reaction between all these pills – sometimes I think there’s some kind of chemical fusion reaction happening!

There’s a strange sort of fascination in me about the effects of all these drugs. I recon I’ve got more shit floating around in me than most people would think is possible but I do still give myself a hard time for feeling tired or foggy.

I’m going to try and find out a bit more about how medication affects fatigue. I expect there’s a lot of information out there about it, I just haven’t come across it yet.

I’ll come back with a future post about what I find!