Some unhelpful comments I’ve received

Just some unhelpful comments I can remember over my lifetime that I have heard, or still hear.

“Chin up”

Oh how I hate this one. I have said about hearing this, in this post, How has stigma around mental health affected you?
Depending on my mood at the time this is said, I can either be sighing and rolling my eyes inside myself, or sarcastically thinking how I could give you chin up if my fist went upwards to your chin, then you would certainly be chin up.
Surprisingly, I have never said where to stick that one, or respond in any way! But I have noticed instead, I distance myself off, like I am not there.

“Snap out of it”

Only heard this once and a very long time ago, that the memory of this one is vague to the situation.

“There is always someone off worser than you”

Oh, don’t you think I don’t know that?

But all the same, does that mean my feelings don’t count? Are my feelings worth nothing?

For years I kept my mouth shut and, did not say how I felt and it did not get me anywhere. I was silent and broken at times and I felt I did not belong in the world, because my feelings were not validated.
When I could cope more, then counseling begun, because there you are not judged.

“Oh… I have felt sad sometimes.”

OMG and eyes rolling when I got this one. My eyes were literally rolling as this was said once when I first talked about my depression and taking meds. At first, I thought she understood, but when a comment came out afterwards she said that, it clearly wasn’t the case. I even asked a question to be sure. I can’t remember my exact words now, but I clearly put this person in their place and corrected the different between sad and depression. This was the same person who was ignorant about my deafness, only a few years before.

“But that’s in the past.”

Seeing my dog get beaten, doesn’t make it go away, like it never happened, or the fear of my dad that I remember.

Being raped doesn’t make how it affects me go away!

“Think positive.”

So you think I don’t? I am doing well trying to be positive and some days are really hard to be positive, that I am tired being positive. I think I can have a day off, or two from being positive.

What comments have you received, that you found not helpful?

 

Related post:

Do you want to read up on further unhelpful comments. I found this page below, which will take you to The Mighty.

https://themighty.com/2018/08/what-not-to-say-support-mental-illness/

5th June 2019, Trial #1 – “Working on Us” Mental Health Prompts

Beckie, over at Beckie’s Mental Mess, is starting on a new prompt series called, Working on Us.

For today’s prompts, there are two prompts which you can either just do one, or both. For details of these prompts and how to play along, please do see todays post at: https://beckiesmentalmess.blog/2019/06/05/june-5-2019-trial-1-working-on-us-mental-health-prompts/

I have decided to do just one of these prompts and so I have chosen prompt #1 – Question:

When you first found out that you had a mental illness/disorder. Explain how this new revelation regarding your health affected you?

My mental health is depression and anxiety.
Depression has been the main symptom, because anxiety came second. But anxiety over the years has proved to be an issue at times, as my depression.

I wouldn’t say it has been a new revelation for me, because I always knew it was there, or not quite right. I just never did anything about it, because as I did as a teenager, I just soildered on and as a teenager, I wouldn’t have been aware about how my own mental health was in general then, even though I seen the trials of my mum’s mental health.
I was a person who got my head down, hoping to get through each difficult day. My long standing readers will know about my childhood difficulties. But for those that are new, then click on childhood in the tags section of my blog, because explaining it here would make it a very long post.

Fast forward after divorce, my mental health went down more and I felt I wasn’t coping. I referred myself to counseling, for the rape and about that relationship in general, which mum supported me on, by coming down on the bus with me and waiting in the waiting area, while I had my counseling. The counseling helped for that time then.

Another moment in time later, which then I was in a relationship. (The relationship that never went anywhere and what turned out to be a shocking later, that I discovered by accident some years later after having nothing to do with him.) During some point in those first two years I think it was now, one night, in my own bed, which I was on my own, I had a flashback of the time I was raped in my first relationship. It felt so real. When I woken up, I found myself in the same position, so god knows if I had been crying out in my dreams. It was real enough in my dreams, but to wake up and find myself like that, made it more sickening. I was hugely triggered and traumatised all over again.
Further counseling at a rape crisis centre, with the support then of the boyfriend I was with. This counseling went into areas of conversation that was not covered in my counseling elsewhere I had the first time round on this area of my life. I can’t remember if I was on medication then. I don’t think I was. But the counseling really helped, for that time.

Then in another area of my life, (before the above flashback) while still in this relationship, had issues with neighbours, while in a council property. The stress of it all brought me to a new time low. I lost a lot of weight with it. At this point, I was on antidepressants and I was scared to take them I remember. But the doctor reassured me of my concerns. My then boyfriend, supported me in that appointment, in case there were things that needed repeating later, with things being a blur and numb. I wasn’t long in getting a private property and this is how I ended up in private properties ever since. I can’t remember how long I was on antidepressants, as some of that time is now a blur.

The last time I was on antidepressants, were at a time I blogged about here. That was when my old workplace broke me that much, that I could take no more. I was depressed and I was having lots of panic attacks. God knows how I still managed to keep going to work. I was that messed up, I really shouldn’t have been there. But I kept doing my shifts and doing what I automatically seem to do as a child.
I also had counseling, which towards the end delved in my childhood. I was having triggers when going into this area and because NHS counseling only lasts so long and because of the nature from childhood, it had to be treaded carefully. This counsellor said because if what I seen as a child and the other things in regards with what dad was like, that I likely to have PTSD. To hear this being said to me shocked me, even though it made sense.

I was on antidepressants longer than the doctor would have liked. This was because I did not want to start weaning off then when I was having driving lessons. Then when I did not do anymore, because I couldn’t deal with it any further, plus I had a double-death in the family; my cousin and her husband.
Then, as you know, followed by discovering the true horrors of the ex-boyfriend and finding out what he truly was by accident in a Google search not related to him, there was no way I could think of reducing my antidepressants. So antidepressants were reduced some months later, even though it was still a difficult time.

Present day, I can still feel lows at times. But I am feeling particularly low since my first day in new job. But I remain medication free, since I last came off them, as mentioned above.

I take each day as it comes. With the now stresses I have had since living here, that you know about and being more of a carer for my mum than I ever been, lists are becoming more my friend, because since February, I am finding myself more forgetful then ever before. I have used a diary for years, but a list is in addition to my diary.
If I have a lot to think about in a day, then a list is created and placed on my coffee table. I will also take the list with me, if required.

I hope this post gives an idea, as it has been very hard to write this one. Not because of the topic, as this is now easy with the counseling and support I have had over the years. It’s just a bit grey in areas, as I forget things and I found just writing this post, in how best to get my words down. So feeling brain tired, is probably the best way to put it.

Thank you for reading, if you got to the end of this post.

It’s not all rainbows and fairies. But it’s what you make of it.

This is something I feel I need to get off my chest and, as I have a majority of supporting and understanding bloggers, because you have been there yourself, I know you will understand. But it doesn’t mean this post came easy, because I have wanted to write this for a month, but held myself back. But now my red mist has visited me a couple of times and my past couple of posts reflecting this partly. I will let it out. Or as I say, ‘rip.’

Ever since I found my mum that day after her OD, my stress levels have not come completely down, because I have and still worried about my mum. And this red mist that has shown out of the blue, in the comfort of my own home, away from prying eyes and recently only showing it partly on my blog, I have been trying until I can’t contain it no longer. All because I did not want to show this unhappy side of me. I feel because I have shown the red mist because of making it all happy and smiley and saying I’m fine, when I have not always been, giving that fake smile, now shameful because I shown the red mist here.

It’s not all smilies, rainbows and fairies. No one can be 100% happy under life stresses. I have done well finding positives out of my life stresses, which I will try and remember everyone of those these past few months here I made, at the end of the post list them.

I have felt partly pressured here to keep it all happy until I couldn’t any longer and I feel I may be judged by one, or two, who are not me and can’t be 100% fucking happy.

I am trying my best and my best is good enough and at a point I really share my feelings now, because I cannot keep quiet any longer, I will also let this shame go with that I have been carrying and not allow anyone to shame me either!

I think I have done well this year considering what has happened and the pressures I am still under

Regardless I am showing this, I won’t be shamed by anyone, because underneath, I have still found positives to my negatives. I just did not find these instant, because the red mist paid a visit. But I found these positive alternatives 10 minutes, give, or take, after!

Also, this year, since that day with my mum, I have been very forgetful. I have been frustrated with this, but also bloody dizzy at times trying to get my head together, remembering.

So this year, the positives I can remember I found from the negatives:

  • My mum being alive
  • Mum’s situation bringing us together, to where one day be living together.
  • From mum choosing to live with me has now gave me an increased chance of being in a council property, than I would have had on my own.
  • For mum’s situation to move us further up than before, on the banding list.
  • Instagram may have disabled my account but I thought fuck em. I have now created a visual folder on my phone to look at when needed.
  • My to do lists are very important in my daily life, now I am forgetful as I am. It works in addition to my diary as it’s more a visual thing.
  • I have created a “vitality wheel” for myself. It’s a new visual self-care thing for me. I will talk about this later.
  • Walking is my go thing. I may never have got round to running, but walking has never failed. It helps me to feel good.
  • Certain scents I am using for comfort in these last couple of months, to keep my mood positive.

 

A worrying time

(This post comes with trigger warning, as it’s talking about overdose.)

Yesterday was a worrying and stressful time. My mum is hearing voices. (Possibly.) I say possibly because I keep an open mind in case something is going on outside, down the road as it was supposedly. But I do wonder if she is hearing them and this is her form of tinnitus, because as usual, it happens when quiet.

Me and mum did have a tiff when I said that she had to keep an open mind it could be tinnitus.
I have tinnitus all the time every day of a high pitch whistle in my right ear, but randomly in the past, I have heard car alarms and smoke alarms. Now when I say I heard these, I really thought I did and it did freak me out on these ocassions for each, because as for the car alarm that happened as I was going to bed and so my hearing aids were not in. I don’t hear car alarms in the home with hearing aids in, so not going to hear them when out. But it took me twenty minutes to register this as I was looking for this car going off.
When it came to the fire alarm one, I was standing under my fire alarm when I was convinced it was going off. This happened in the day and so I was wearing my hearing aids. When I walked away from fire alarm it seamt quieter, but when I walked back, it was loud and so I was really convinced it was going off, regardless that visually it wasn’t and I don’t hear the fire alarm anyway because of my deafness, but this never crossed my mind at this point, because I was so convinced. I also use an alerter to help me hear the fire alarm. This flashes and has a loud alarm that I do hear and this wasn’t going off either. I could have easily argued this one, if I was with someone that day. It was doing my head in and I left the house, taking the fire alarm in my head, proving what I kept telling myself in the house, that it’s not going off.

As I said to mum about my weird, caught me out moments of tinnitus, they really did freak me out and they caught me out. I really believed it was happening, because it felt real. I said to mum that she can’t hear me with her hearing aids in when she is in the kitchen, while I am sat in the living room, so she is not going to know what is being said down the road when she is not wearing her hearing aids. I said to her you may hear noise and know if it’s a man or a woman down the road. But not the details.
Mum argued that it is very quiet. I did hear it. And I responded that yes, I know it is very quiet and I also know how tinnitus can really get to some people because you are aware of it more when it is quiet, because you have no distractions like the day. But again, it doesn’t mean you can hear the details of what someone says down the road when you have no hearing aids in, because twice, so far at this point, you have not heard me in your home when I have spoken to you and when I ask you exactly what has been said you can’t give me an answer, even though you are convinced someone is talking about you.

This isn’t the first time since my mum has been home that readers will know that my mum has heard voices. The difference this time is that this one is now a nasty one and so I can see how it’s affecting my mum.

Whether real, or tinnitus, it is real. It is real to my mum and I have said this. But whether real, or tinnitus, as I have said to mum, you have to find a way to deal with this, to help it stop, or something, to make it better for her.
Regardless of this tiff we had, we are fine.

Mum wasn’t going to tell them that visit her each afternoon, because she was scared she be sectioned. But as I said to her, if you don’t, I will. I said to my mum, I am worried, because I can see how it’s bothering you today and I said for them to know, doesn’t mean you will be sectioned, because that won’t happen. It’s about helping you to settle back in and as the doctor said at the mental health unit before she was discharged, it’s about preventing you from coming back.
I continued to remind her, that as long as you take your meds accordingly and don’t harm yourself, you will not go back.

So yesterday, I ended up being really stressed and worried for my mum. Mum has not been in her home for quite a month now and as I said before she was discharged to the doctor and my mum, my worry is when we get the two week, or four week mark whether it starts again (voices) and how my mum will cope. I can support my mum, but mum had to do the work too. My mum has to find the ways to cope. I have suggested in the past what to do, but my mum doesn’t follow it through.

I am scared I will find mum on her bedroom floor like before. But this time, not surviving.
Mum may have her meds weekly, but it doesn’t mean she is not stashing them away, not taking them again, saving them up.
It doesn’t stop mum going to a different shop to buy a pack of paracetamol and taking them all, regardless that walking wise it would be hard work.
I hope my mum is taking those meds as promised and not binning them. Do I ask her this, or does it cause damage to ask her this? But at the end of the day, she had stopped taking them and saving them before taking them, when I found her overdosed. Mum has promised she won’t do this again, because of the damage and upset she seen caused by her actions. But my mum has a history of overdosing. So yes, after seeing how she was yesterday, I can’t help but worry.

Mum did tell the person who came to see her yesterday and that person who came to see her yesterday is there today. There’s a nurse who is coming today too. This was mentioned before he knew about these negative type voices she heard and so they will both talk to her about the voices today. As tempting as I want to turn up, I won’t, so they can both have time with her themselves and me to do my own thing.

I see my mum next on Tuesday at the hospital. My mum has an audiology appointment. But only because I pushed her to make this appointment now, because she had not got round to doing it as promised. Whether mum will get a hearing test that day, I don’t know. I doubt it, as usually you wait longer than that. So I hope that one isn’t done that day, she can have an appointment made, because mum has had no hearing test since she has had those hearing aids and I think one is due, in case her hearing aids need to be adjusted. She talks if difficulties with her hearing aids, but yet again, doesn’t do anything about it and it takes me or a medical person to push her, to do something about it.

How has stigma around mental health affected you?

For me, the first thing that comes to mind is how stigma affected my mum. This affected me because of the awareness mainly from my childhood, but still parts as an adult.
My mum has paranoid schizophrenia and having the title schizophrenia is enough, because of the stigma I remember around it. The stigma may not be as bad now as in my childhood, but I believe it’s still there, like any mental illness.
I remember as a teenager that schizophrenia would get bad press in the newspapers. It gave those with this condition a bad name, making it look like they were all dangerous, or violent if you had this condition, when it isn’t true. This condition would always be mentioned in the bold part of the newspaper when someone with this condition killed someone. I remember seeing this making the front page at times. This was newspapers in that time trying to give a sensational story line that sold their papers, not realising just what damage you were causing. I remember feeling really angry how the newspapers did this.
Thankfully now, newspapers have to watch how they word things, but I feel the damage from those days is still there. Do you?

People with schizophrenia are not violent people, but they can be a danger to themselves. But there are some people who will be quiet by withdrawing into themselves, as in my mum’s case.

I don’t like the word schizophrenia. But when I came to not liking this word, I don’t know. I don’t know if I hated this word when understanding my mum’s condition at a young age, or if it was the bad press if the newspapers.

But as I say, I think there is still stigma around mental health and because of this, it’s not something I will bring mum’s mental health particular condition into a face-to-face conversation with someone and mum is wary to do the same.

As you know I suffer with depression and anxiety. Depression has been good but anxiety shown itself since last year, as I blogged about. The past month or two, anxiety has not been too bad.
I have experienced stigma with my own mental health, things like people saying “chin up,” is not exactly helpful. Also, when you start talking about how you feel to some people, you realise from their responses they don’t get it after all as you first thought and that I am expected to snap out of it. Snapping out of it is not easy as you think.

It’s bad enough when people have to deal with their own mental health day in and day out, but when you receive unhelpful comments, cruel remarks, or just plain ignorance, that can create as much damage as the illness itself.

We have come a long way since when I was a child, but there is still more to be done. The royals are doing good with their Heads Together campaign I think.

How has stigma around mental health affected you?

Turning challenging moments into positives

Think about what is most challenging in your life right now and name as many positive aspects of it that you can.

This above prompt came out of my gratitude journal, that I mentioned about in this post, Gratitude. I have been struggling with this page the last three weeks. Knowing how I have been feeling because of all the things that have been going on, I looked and thought during those three weeks, how the hell can I think of something so positive out of my most challenging in my life right now?

After three weeks of just staring at this prompt, I was able to write something today. I wanted to share this with you, due the support you have all gave me during my difficult time I am going through.

My challenging time is anxiety, not helped by Spark Energy, the administrators of Spark Energy and the council from the district I left. But also, after witnessing what happened outside my door in January, which left me terrified and now my anxiety even higher, on top of feeling jumpy at every noise and at times broken, that I have to cry with it all.

The positives are, that regardless how I feel and the above that’s happened, I still somehow seem to be fighting. I’m also determined of what will change and that’s me moving to another flat, or house, depending what appeals at that time, when my contract comes up. I am hoping my savings will still be there by October, to allow me my move.

Spark Energy have not heard the last of me and after seeing someone at CAB today, the manager at Spark Energy will be getting a letter, as advised by CAB. The administrators will also be getting a very similar letter, when I have heard from them. These letters what I have to say are all from a particular email I found in my spam box. So what I have to say to both of them, reminding them on a law that they have breached, someone here needs to acknowledge who is at fault here. CAB told me to keep them on their toes and I will be doing.

Come late August to September, I will start packing stuff I don’t need, like books for example.

Come October, I will start looking where I am moving next and hopefully that part won’t take too long.

Anxiety that I nearly went home

I came across an email in my spam folder. Although it was there and still have suspicions, it had my details correct. I am assuming it’s another debt recovery for Spark Energy, but I won’t respond to these. If I am going to respond to anyone, it will be the first ones, but regardless, it sent me into anxiety. I did not feel well; my chest tightening a little, my throat tightening more. I felt sick. Surprisingly, I wasn’t breathing heavily and I was aware to keep it like that. I took sips of water and warned a person who I was in same room that I wasn’t feeling well. He knew what caused it, because of what I was chatting about before. I felt the need to maybe go home with not feeling well. I did not think I would be any good being there, but I was encouraged to stay and he asked me what helps to calm it. One being water, that I was already taking sips of. He was joking with me as well and we were chatting while he carried on working and me just sipping water.

Although I still did not feel well. It took the worst of in the end and, I was able to feel I could stay and carry on what I am doing. Lunch, I had a cob instead of chips, because I knew with how I was feeling I would struggle eating, which one the possibility of my throat seizing up when I swallow.

When it was time to go home, as I felt before, it filled me with dread. But I did not reveal that at my volunteer place. But they do know when time comes to my contract ending where I currently live, that I will be looking again, which they will give me a reference like before, if required.

Thursday, I plan to go back to CAB, to update them from previous week and ask them advice, as well as showing them that email. I want to see if there is a way I can complain about how this whole affair could have been done better. Not just by Spark Energy, but by the administrators as well.

The weekend just gone prior to all this, all I did was mostly sleep, or doze.

I really don’t want to be living where I am and the person said do you think you could move out earlier because of all that? I am not even going to see, because I know as much as I would like to leave now, everyone is doing what they need to do and reassuring me. As I am not being threatened and only witnessed, doesn’t mean you get that privilege to move before.

Only thing I am waiting in is actually speaking to the police about it. I have heard nothing since replying back to an email last Thursday night, giving my personal details to this policeman.
And from the other person I spoke to prior from the council, which he updated that the police had been to the property that afternoon and when they will be back dealing about the other, I’m no wiser what has gone off since. Like is he registered, or not? Was it in the property? Did they speak to the neighbour below who corrected me on the gun he was holding, because he witnessed it himself? Did that neighbour admit to them he seen it, if they did speak? The questions go on.