There is this wonderful and thoughtful person who has been such a help on this forum called Jaquta, and I find myself wondering what she would say in this situation. I imagine it would be something wise and thoughtful.
Even though I have only known her for a short time I feel I do know her voice, and perhaps even a little bit about her.
Finding and engaging help is not an easy thing... but not altogether impossible either. Let's see if we can figure out how to get you up to the task...
How are you doing with what I call the basics of good mental health -
1. Morning light - getting exposure to bright light (30 - 45 minutes per day) before 9 am (either getting a light therapy light or getting outdoors).
2. Aerobic activity - 30 minutes of activity that raises the heart rate (brisk walking is perfect)
3. Regular social contact in the morning - what I call cafe therapy. Nothing meaningful, just the reassurance that life goes on.
4. Mindfulness - mindfulness meditation practice.
5. Health pleasure - doing one healthy thing that is or, at least, used to be pleasurable per day.
6. Mastery - noticing one thing that you do well each day - for instance the posts that you put up here.
This seems like an overwhelming list. Two observations - you don't have to do everything, but the more the do the better you will feel. And you can combine several - for instance, a mindful walk to the coffee shop in the morning could get you four in one fell swoop.
These are, by the way, all evidence based recommendations.
Keep in touch. We want to help you just as you have helped us.
because I'm not self-harming or in hospital.
I exceeded the character limit so that meant deleting half my post. Too self-loathing to even bother with communicating the rest.
I have that trapped feeling too. I have a problem avoiding people just because they stress me out. I feel like I am becoming a schizoid. I am trapped in a annoying environment, I have no money, my car tire is flat, I got so scary depressed to the point I felt psychosis coming on, caused by mushrooms. I had to go back on SSRIs, I am feeling much better now. I keep changing my mind about how I feel about medication.
Do you have any hobbies? I find lots of joy in painting, making crafts and collages, anyone can do it. I find it very therapeutic. I also love buying weird collectible antiques. These are the things that get me up in the morning. Like Peter said you give very good advice on these forums.
If I were advising someone else I would most likely tell them to talk to a health professional. Tell them to get help. It is a dilemma though when those health professionals, in my opinion, have created and contributed to the problem. There are only so many times when I feel I can tolerate being told that there is nothing they can do to help, to have calls unanswered and I guess to sum it up by the director of mental health to be told that I don't matter.
I guess I have become quite phobic about asking for that assistance when I feel it is most needed. It is devastating to be made the problem and to have that negativity documented in exchange for further put downs.
I'm easily getting light exposure. It is coming up summer here. Our house comprises of a lot of windows so regardless of activity I will still be exposed.
I have been running most days. I was wondering about doing a marathon next year. An off-road half feels more me though. I feel like I need exercise to prove to others that I can achieve and that I am OK as a person. Exercise is often punitive for me. It is usually more about weight and body image. I have trouble staying with anything for longer than six or seven weeks (and then that is usually because something has happened with a member of my treatment team). I often find myself starting things over and over and this becomes extremely demoralizing (especially when others achieve and progress).
My basic social contact for the week (other than a good morning or good night from my parents) is my contact with my GP. I sometimes meet the neighbors when I am out walking and will wave to them and occasionally they will stop and talk.
I live out in the country and currently can't afford to drive into town, etc.
I probably don't do mindfulness meditation very often. I have had some negative experiences with dbt and can still be resistant. I bought a copy of the skills training manual several years ago but after my last therapist and her asking me not to read stuff and to allow her to treat me I have been reluctant to take anything in. I was trying to read Otto Kernberg's book on T-F-P. I thought it was helpful but it can be hard to treat yourself.
I did buy one of Jon Kabit-Zinn's mindfulness meditation cd's. I have been using it in my brothers car. At the moment I prefer listening to several of the songs on the bush fire appeal cd. (Don't give up and look around you, everyone you see, everyone you know is going to die.) ?? We don't have music in the house.
Exercise used to be enjoyable. My coach gave me a rope and told me to hang myself from the rope by a branch of the tree.
I currently have a sore back and sore neck so exercise perhaps isn't as pleasurable as it use to be. Nor is it when it makes me feel sick. It could just be due to anxiety. ??
I've backed away from posting. There have been others who have been struggling, feeling suicidal, etc and I feel guilty for not being there emotionally for them. Not being there at all for them really.
All evidence based. Exposure to sun has the potential to increase my biological age though. I did one of those questionnaires on biological aging and due to stress, etc my life expectancy is 53 years.
Thank you for you support.
I can relate to that too. No money. Also I got a bike puncture and couldn't afford to repair that. My doctor said he would give me a puncture repair kit. He said they can be picked up from the $2 shop. When I can afford to fill the car up with petrol I will go and investigate.
I feel pretty close to losing the plot too and that is without the help of magic mushrooms, etc. I was thinking about dissolving all my lorazepam tablets in alcohol and injecting them (I live on a farm so have access to needles and syringes, etc) but it perhaps isn't the best solution to my problems, even if it feels like it.
It's good that you're feeling better. Perhaps you could discuss your feelings about meds with a psychotherapist or doctor.
Sport is something I regularly fall back on. I sometimes feel like I live in a museum with all my dead relatives stuff. I wish my parents would biff some of it.
Thank you for all your support.
I think talking has made me feel less alone in all this. Thank you.
I am glad of that. Mindfulness is not quite the same as DBT... I know plenty of folks who have been irritated by Marsha Linehan's program who have found a very comfortable practice of some kind of mindfulness...
And it can be combined with sport - mindful running or walking gives you two benefits.
Try listening to a few MP3's by Kabat Zinn. Or others.
And glad that talking helped.
I think my resistance to dbt comes from its arbitrary implementation by health professionals here. I also associate it with a lot of negative emotions which have arisen through diagnosis, etc.
I do however feel somewhat irritated that someone can take a bunch of life skills and put their name to them. Maybe that's a skewed perception but that is how I currently feel.
I have spoken to several people who have known Marsha Linehan and feel somewhat validated when they say they feel she is a bit strange. I'm not sure how grateful those with bpd should be for her efforts. Possibly she has done some to advance treatment and awareness of the disorder.
I joined an online bpd support group several years ago which had a strong focus on meditation. I liked some of the excerpts and teaching stories they posted. I was banned after some comments I made though. I jeopardized a persons recovery by saying that I didn't think that they would recover. I had no right to say that and was way out of line. I guess in a world where you and others are struggling to survive anything can happen. Emotions are so raw and insight is so limited. I have come a long way since then. It was a hard, and potentially costly, way to learn valuable lessons.
I usually like being in the moment when I run but because I have only just started to get back into it and have a lot of other stuff going on I tend to use the negativity as a motivator. My GP once read a psychiatrist's letter to me as he thought I had a right to know what was being said about me. He mentioned fatiguability. I use all this past stuff a lot. Running punishes me and memories of them. I am pushing too hard at the moment but are afraid to back off. Mentally I will see that as a huge failure. Either way, at this rate, I am going to crash and burn rather badly.
I can't feel at the moment. If I could I expect I would stop and think before I spoke (or wrote).
I don't get this.
Hopefully I don't have dementia to look forward to either. I was wondering whether that was pseudo dementia though. That feels so familiar.
I caught five minutes of the news tonight and they said that research done at Otago University said that cells after a stroke weren't dead but dormant.