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May 19, 2009 - 9 comments

This is a warning about the dangers of having a mental disorder that goes on not being diagnosed and treated. Today I got the grim news that my mother will be losing her house - and the $90,000 she had invested in it. It goes to auction on Thursday. She lives down the street from me so I should have a good view of the proceedings. I know nothing of mortgages, etc. but yesterday my mother came and dropped this in my lap. She apparently had been getting letters from a lawyer and her mortgage co. for some time and JUST REFUSED TO OPEN THEM! She is an extremely intelligent, even intellectual, cultured woman who has been taken care of all her life but sees herself as capable. I am not so deceived about my own absence of some important abilities. She has received two inheritances which further helped prolong how many decades she could get away with this sort of insanity. My mother never worked outside the home and this was totally normal in her generation but now I realize she COULDN"T. I find myself that I can't keep a job no matter how I try and my mother knew inherently that it would make her look stupid. Just like I always look - stupid. Instead she played the book-wise and tasteful matriarch and it suited her. She never learned to drive - she was afraid and someone was always there to take her. I am afraid and have no choice. Her protests that I was interfering in her autonomy made me feel guilty for asking her where she was getting  all this money - insinuating that I was getting greedy. She's generous to a FAULT, don't get me wrong. Oh, the drama, the mood swings, the manipulations, the guilt trips, the screaming and get the picture. But because she was so smart in some practical ways and such a good conversationalist, house keeper, cook, art appreciator, bill payer, yada yada - she has skills I would kill to have - it just went on and on 'til now it's come to this. I can't stand it. Part of me is base enough to realize that that not only is she losing her house but what was left of any inheritance I had always hoped for is gone as well. I know now that I will never own a house and that has always been my dream. My children will never go to Disneyland. I will never again enjoy the lifestyle - that I never EVER took for granted but cherished - that I had 10 years ago due to my mother's over reaching sense of entitlement and a platinum Visa card. My excuse for my participation is I was young beyond my years in  the ways of the world and kept completely in the dark about the hard facts of limited resources. All my possessions are gone - everything I found a few dollars to to snatch up and hord for the day when I would have that gray stone house in the country, on a hill with a big tree with a long swing..... pictured in an illustration of a nursery rhyme book that I would lust after as a toddler. My father, who had his own demons, would draw up plans for a playhouse that he would never build for me, Every year or so he'd ask me how I'd like some detail - once giving me the (theoretical) choice between airconditioning or a fire place! I must have been 12 at the time and was sadly losing some faith but I wanted to believe. How I wanted to believe. Perhaps this is why I am so house hungry. Self pity, jealousy, obsession - I know my faults. Think how these emotions have tortured me when you tell me how unattractive they are. And now I see that I am no longer a Cinderella. That no lonely prince (read house owner) will come and, thankful for witty banter, a warm lover, and a ready made family, ask me to move in and decorate his empty abode. My prince was certainly not made to order but he loves me and he's so generous and good hearted. He deserves a better woman and I want a more realistic guy - so I can pass for normal myself.
  So, here it is, the infamous letter we BPs always leave behind. What is it it's called on the news? A long rambling letter, right? Well, that doesn't mean it was empty of truth and understandings. That it was worthless because of it's author's diagnosis or the many switches in subject - I've always resented that description - the victim left behind a long, rambling suicide note....Yes, this is the straw.... I just can not cope. I never could and now, as my mental illness gets more complicated, my eyesight is mysteriously worsening with no explanation, my boyfriend very inncocently accidentally gave me herpes, I have developed this shocking case of ACNE of all things - is this breast cancer? Should I whine? It's just that the combo of me losing my possessions, my mother losing her house, my lover actually OWING his mother his inheritance because he and his exwife took a second mortgage out on his mother's home (figure THAT one out), my  deeply beloved children each having things amiss and in in my boys VERY amiss and I witness them having this same tender heart as I that will be broken so many times, the inability to bounce, to remember, to learn from mistakes, etc., etc. and my heart is constantly broken on their behalves. My car leaks black bile that has to be put back into it at half the rate as gas it seems. It's rusty and smashed from where a deer ran into me a few years ago - without insurance, where was I? Oh, the list. David's truck needs hundreds of dollars of work and has been sitting in my mom's driveway for months. We live in a basement apartment and I hate it. I should be grateful - we USED to live in one room! If I were thankful I know I could be happy again but I see what I was and what I am now. What I had and what I have NOW! I need to add several more people on to the list as folks who unarguably HATE me with no apparent reason. I am a poor house keeper, an impossible appointment maker/keeper, a lame coordinator of homework, missing items, etc. Yes, I know people will cry - for themselves though really. I had a revelation one day many years ago when I was weeping for the sudden death of my young brother that he wasn't suffering any more - I was. That he had peace and I was crying because I missed him. It was understandable that I would cry but seeing that fact helped me to eventually stop. People should remember me as affectionate, an adoring mother, witty, fun, and haunted - as well as the crappy stuff. I was made wrong and then handed a set of circumstances that were the worst things I could handle. Sorry, guys.

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Avatar universal
by bernie40, May 19, 2009
Leta, I'm going to say this out loud so everyone can read it because I am not ashamed.  I love you for who you are, I mean that.  Over the months I have learned what a lovely, caring, witty, brilliant woman and mother you are.  You are also far stronger than you currently feel.  You have been crushed by the numerous challenges falling upon your shoulders but you are not defeated.  Ask to be taken to the hospital NOW!  You deserve to feel better, you deserve a chance to begin to feel like a functioning human being again.

What does it matter if your housekeeping isn't of perfect standard, you miss appointments and are inconsistent with homework etc.  I can stand here and say that I too am every one of those things.  It does not make you a lesser human being.  

I really feel for you regarding the whole house issue.  I came to terms a few years back that my dream to own my own home would never come to fruition.  Like you I lost everything and will never have it back.  Talking about it to close friends, taking the right combo of meds and being aware of my triggers has helped me come to terms with a lot things.  I won't lie and say I never feel like I'm a let down because you already know that I do but I keep fighting.

Please get yourself to the hospital and never ever apologise for the truth of your emotions.

I shall be checking in again tomorrow and I'm hoping with all my heart that you will have made the right decision to get yourself to the hospital.

Helen xxx

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by LetaB, May 19, 2009
  Please don't make me feel as though my feelings about myself reflect anything I feel about you or what I am is anything like what you are. You are swwetly mistaken there and I can tell many ways. I am beyond miserable. I already was so desperate and needed one more nudge to topple me when I get shoved hard in the back. I don't want to go to the hospital and come back to this. Why was I given the taste and sensitivity to appreciate every detail of the good things that I have no clue how to achieve? It is sooooo painful. Just now my youngest child says he doesn't want to play his flute any more but wants to be in choir. This may not sound important but the difference between the two here is huge and it's all he is succeeding in now - without effort. He doesn't care. He is so gifted and nothing is important enough to work at. He's failing things left and right that he has no real trouble understanding. Fastest kid in his class but doesn't want to be in track. He has no ambition. His older brother tells me he'll work at a gas station when he grows up. That's HIS future and HE has some real learning issues but is remarkable with certain things. I CAN"T FUCKING TAKE IT! I DON"T WANT TO HAVE TO! Why does everyone think it is better to be alive and SUFFERING constantly than being in perfect peace?

Avatar universal
by paranoid_cataclysm, May 19, 2009
I think this is just more testament to how serious mental illness is.  It actually bothers me how people, including people who are afflicted with Bipolar Disorder itself, will argue with me on how it's not a serious problem.  I think if it ruins and destroys careers, relationships and lives in general it's pretty god damn serious business.  And yes it sucks a lot when you or someone you care about is extremely gifted in something but can't see it or don't care.  People tell me I'm gifted in music but I can't see it whatsoever and it's a real blow to the already non-existent self-esteem when you believe you're only good at doing one thing but you believe that your work in that one thing isn't worth a damn.  It really bothers people who care about the person who is going through this or doesn't care about their gift.  I honestly believe that people who have low or non-existent self-esteem need to believe something they do is worth something or they'll never have any hope of getting better.  Maybe my need for approval from others stems from never having approval from anyone most of my life which I hear is crucial in childhood development?  I'll never know.

I can understand why you're asking why everyone thinks it's better to be alive and suffering constantly than in peace in death.  I've wondered about that many times in my life.  I even sadly think that death is the only thing that can fix some people including myself as I wrote in my latest journal entry.  I have a sense of peace in finally realizing there's a fix to my problems but at the same time I feel hopelessly and extremely claustrophobicly trapped as I don't believe in suicide.  People tell me you need to have goals that are obtainable in life.  What's the point of having them if it's not what you want?  What's the point of trying to have goals if they're always a latent disappointment?

Anyway I'm writing one of those rambling letters you were referring to so I'm gonna' close it here.  I wish you could feel better.

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by LetaB, May 20, 2009
Corlen, when I'm gone would you try to strike up a mentorship with my Sheridan? He has a page on myspace that he loves - all black and red and "beastie". He doesn't have to continue the flute - I just want him to pick SOMETHING and NAIL IT! I never could decide and look what's happened. We believe just from the way you express yourself that you most definitely ARE gifted and that's why so many here want to hear your stuff. You deprive them of enjoyment by your self consciousness. If you are blessed with talent you are behooven to share it. Sheridan is just the most kind, generous, sensitive kid I've ever known. How will he survive? Yesterday he came home in tears because his two best friends and he had gone canoing - he had been so excited - and they stopped on an island then these kids started killing clams - just for fun. He stood up to them and told them how juvenile and stupid they were behaving and they called him a wuss. Wusses don't stand up to bullies and tell them off. I was proud of him but I know he's due for a whole lot of pain - which hurts me far more then my own. You are too young to know what life has in store for you. You are a  great communicator and often seem to see through to the center of muddled subjects. Give it more of a shot please.

Avatar universal
by steck, May 20, 2009
Leta B--I don,t know you well, but by reading your post I agree that you need help now!  This warning was your cry for help, and you need to know that no matter how bad things seem right now, their is someone in this world who will help you cope.  I have been where you are, and I want you to know that you are worth fixing.  Don't kill yourself and call asuicide hotline or your mental health center.  I will keep you in my prayers. Steck

Avatar universal
by tres1965, May 20, 2009
Please take care of yourself! YOU are a fantastic person & deserve to be happy.
It doesn't matter in the scheme of things if your house is clean & tidy, your bills paid on the 'exact' day or your child is using his gifts right now, or your Mom's failings (you feel these are). What matters is, you are alive, & trying. The details will follow you always if you give up. Your child will forever question himself, his worth & take blame in that. In the scheme of things, yes, you may never have a dream home, a new car, an unending credit card, but what you WILL have is knowledge that you didn't quit on everyone & everything. The car can be replaced, you can't. You don't have the ability to 'fix' everyone else's failings/decisions. You DO have the right to pursue your own happiness though. PLEASE don't quit. For your child if nothing else.
A few years ago I lost everything, I just had the outfit on my back, & my Daughter. It was due to my Mothers craziness. I had to catch a ride back to a different state, ride with 'ex-inlaws, & lost every thing I had cherished, & considered 'mine'.
I was so hurt, crazy, lost, broke, etc. But for the Grace of God went I...
It took years to recover even part of my past dreams. I still get hurt thinking about it. BUT, I have my sanity, a beat up car, my Daughter, an apartment now with things that are MINE. Nothing fancy, but mine. I guess what I am rambling about is, it never may be what WAS, or you feel was lost to you, BUT, it is YOURS....take happiness where you can, even the small things. Right now it may seem unattainable, but you CAN make your own stars!!!!
God Bless.....please don't quit, stay the course & fight, fight, fight! *hugs* Tres

Avatar universal
by bernie40, May 20, 2009
It's not that "we" (I am referring to myself here) think it is ok to stay alive and suffer.  I say the things I say not only to show my support but because it's the truth.  I have been where you are now and felt how you explain you feel now.  I am glad that I am still here, no matter how many bad days there may be, the good ones do make me glad to be alive.  You will have good days again.  I agree with Tres in everything she says.

Without medication you are lowering your chances of having those good days, that is why it is so important to get to a hospital or to a psychiatrist to get those sorted.

Nobody can tell you what to do and I wouldn't dare try!  All I can do is share my own experiences with you and offer my support.  I know we are all individuals and so not one of us has exactly the same experience, however I expect some of them are pretty close.

Hugs and thinking of you.


Avatar universal
by zzzmykids, May 20, 2009
I don't know you.  Haven't known you long enough to say I love or hate or am indifferent.  But what I have read, I find you sensitive, georgeous, warm eyes.  My eyes are going.  I have so much more to be forgiven for than you, trust me.
I will not cry for myself but for your children and those that really know you.
Peace?  How shall  you have peace? The very one that loves you unconditionally has set our paths together because He knows you, He loves you and He wants to wrap his arms around you. I am not afraid to say His name, it is, Jesus.
It is not the intention of God for us to suffer, sin entered the world and that was that. But the most brilliant people I know are people with mental illness. It appears you have lows for three months then a month off and then again.  Ride this one through, LetaB, ride it through.  You do have real friends, they are typing to you with concern.
All of heaven will mourn your decision if you choose the illusion of peace. You are not a mistake.You are special and the stress creates more of the lows.
I can't say more, if this is your decision, this is your decision....but it really is your sick brain and next year this time, like cowgirl you could be praising God for being alive.

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by ILADVOCATE, May 23, 2009
Some of these issues are emotionally draining but some have specific factual solutions. It would be very normal to be depressed in these circumstances but there are ways to pull through some of these things. But don't think you are "giving up". Many Americans are experiencing this as regards the reccession. I myself had to abandon large aspects of my life due to my physical disability and am adjusting (such as the TTY) and am obtaining treatment to recover. But some aspects of what you describe come from issues that could be treated. Of course it doesn't make sense to assume everything could be changed but some things can be. Its not a matter of optimism which is understandable not to feel but thinking of what could be help in a practical way. But when things aren't working out its hard to think in that way to begin with. I would suggest speaking to psychiatrist first, get treatment adjusted and then try to speak with the people you know and the various supports and services out there (of which I'd be happy to look up) that can help you to get other aspects of your life together.

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