Yesterday afternoon and evening were truly awful. For once, not because of me and whilst my objective has always to be open and honest with what I write, on this occasion because it involves other people and not me directly I do not want to share such personal details. What I can say is that this is a very testing time not just for me, but for my family too. They need me to be strong and fight hard. so this is what I am determined I am going to do right now. I am not prepared to lose the people who mean more to me in this world than anybody.
Aside from the events from Monday afternoon, I had already had a busy morning seeing the psychiatrist.
The appointment with the psychiatrist had moments of hostility, but she does seem to actually give a shit. We had a frank discussion about everything and believe that we are on the same page – FINALLY. She has increased citalopram to 40mg and wants to see me four weeks from now. She has also told me that she wants me to attend a CBT workshop starting next Tuesday for 6 weeks. CBT is not the greatest therapy for someone with BPD as there are so many intricate emotions, feelings, thoughts etc which make BPD the complex illness that it is. However, she believes that the CBT will gently give me a push in the right direction. It will give me something to focus on for the next 6 weeks and will hopefully give me some additional support which will then help me to utilise those skills from the STEPPS course. She accepted that I am too messed up right now to make sense of the skills and work we did in STEPPS. We were given a folder and over the course of 6 months it became a huge heavy thing and currently when I look at it, well it might as well be written in a foreign language. It freaks me out, I put it away again in frustration and feel like a failure. DBT is something which is often mentioned as a good treatment for BPD and I asked her about this. Turns out that the ‘STEPPS’ course was in fact DBT but written specifically for BPD. The difference between CBT and DBT is that the DBT is far more in-depth and a longer course. It was really hard at the time and I really feel that whilst there were moments when I got it, could deal with it, there was a lot that it entailed that I wasn’t ready for and I am still not. With time and the aid of the CBT course and counselling I hope that I will reach a point where I can read those sections I have avoided and make some progress.
Aside from this we also discussed my use of co-codamol. I have been using it really heavily over the past month or so. I took an inadvertent overdose of the venlafaxine too which made me really unwell for a few days. But the co-codamol I have been abusing a lot. Mini-overdoses have become a regular occurence. I have taken 6-10, 30/500 tablets in one go. Not just once or twice but several times a week for about 6 weeks or so. I know that this is dangerous because of the paracetamol, but the codeine doesn’t do much at lower levels and because I have been feeling so crap, it has been the only way to shut my head up, to calm me down and reign in the paranoia and anxiety. I have had a lot of anxiety attacks and have just really not known what to do with myself. I am really not myself. Mentally yesterday and this morning I am trying to be strong. To stay focused and not to get to bogged down, but I know that it is the smallest thing that can cause that wave of panic and the only way to get rid of it is taking the co-codamol. The psychiatrist wants me to be strong and contact the drug service again and get some support from them in coming off it. I am not ready right now. Mentally I am just too unstable. I want to give the increased and new meds a chance to kick in and to be a little more in control. Once this is achieved, then I will go. My friend has used the service and knows how horrible it is to go there on your own, so she is going to come with me. I feel that if she does, when the time is right I will go. But one step at a time.
From previous posts and my tweets I have explained how I am struggling with trusting people. I have been feeling exceptionally vulnerable and in my head I have thought that people will get to know me and then realise what a fruitcake I am and they need to back away. I have felt that the professionals are all out to get me in some way and this has just increased my mistrust for everyone. I have had several ‘rants’ on Twitter the past few days because these feelings have been so overwhelming. I have struggled to be open about things because I have been afraid of what people are going to think or say. I am really very paranoid at the moment and I do hear things a lot and sometimes I see things which are not there. It’s a horrible place to be because somewhere deep inside me there is a rational person who knows that people are not out to get me, that they care, but then there is this other voice which tells me that I am being put on all these meds because they want to poison me, or that people can watch me through the TV, laptop, phone…whatever it is. It makes doing things really hard and I did retreat back to my bed all day everyday because it seemed like the safest place to be.
With everything that is happening with my family I am now paranoid about losing my husband and kids. I don’t want to lose them. For all the things that have happened lately with flirting, sexting, being bisexual and being attracted more to women, the truth of the matter is that the only person that I want to be with, the only person that I love is my husband. I would never cheat on him and whilst I like the idea of being with a woman, the fact is that I am monogamous because actually I find being intimate like that really , really difficult. I have done since my first marriage and the fear I have, of trusting someone is near impossible. I hide myself from my husband who knows me so well…I can’t imagine therefore being with another person in that capacity and I am beginning to see that I really don’t want to be. It’s hard accepting this though because of my past and how I have learnt to demonstrate caring and love for someone.
I started this post last night and as I am sat here this morning trying to figure things out, I am becoming more aware that this battle from rock bottom is going to be a long and arduous journey. Right now I am feeling exhausted. I spent yesterday trying to be strong and positive. I managed this morning to get one of the kids to school for rugby at 8am and the other was early for school. This is positive. The kids were happy this morning and I felt a sense of achievement for having got them to school on time, having had breakfast. This is a huge thing for me.
I am determined right now that I am going to get things sorted, that I am going to fight like a true warrior and get through this. The past haunts me, it does affect my thinking, how I react to things, trusting people etc. I know deep down that this is going to take a long time. The meds have only just been increased and I know that they take a few weeks to kick in, last time I was on citalopram it took 12 weeks to settle. Also have quetiapine which I am adjusting to….I know I have to just stick with it and not lose hope when I feel down. When I feel anxious and panicked.
I have just literally had a phone call with regard to the events from Monday. I am feeling really panicked. I can feel my heart pounding, my head is doing its usual paranoid thinking, my stomach has started to hurt and I feel really sick. I feel a bit claustrophobic and I am essentially freaking out. I know I have done nothing wrong….I know that, I really do. BUT my head is not believing me. It’s racing away and all these negative thoughts are screaming at me. I am scared. I am not in control of these events, I can’t make them go away or better. I feel powerless and out of my depth. I just want to cry.
This is the problem with being unwell, you can have all the best intentions to remain positive, to do everything you can in your power to keep focused and fight, but then something can happen and it pulls the rug, that has been tentatively placed, right back from under you and suddenly it’s all too much.
I have a busy couple of days ahead of me this afternoon and tomorrow. I have to go to counselling and then have an appointment when the kids finish school. This is going to involve a lot of emotions and I am really worried about it all. I am trying to think rationally, but inside I am failing. This is a huge test of my resolve and I am hoping with everything I have that I can hold it together. But what I am not sure of, is it ok to then fall apart…is it ok to feel overwhelmed and out of my depth? Are these normal reactions to things or am I overreacting? This is one of the things I find hardest with BPD, I am never certain what is considered ‘normal’ and what is considered my illness.