Childhood retreat

When ‘Beauty and the Beast’ aired on British TV, I absolutely loved it, when I was a kid. Staring Ron Perlman, as Vincent and Linda Hamilton, as Catherine, watching it was an escape from the world of bullies and things that sometimes went on at home. The trouble was, it was only on one day a week, which wasn’t enough for me. I would escape into my own world, when it was time for bed and imagine being there with them, giving myself a new name and creating new stories. It was my safe world, because this was a safe world for all the different characters that lived there, below the city streets. Each of them with a past story, before they came to live there, where they felt safe and loved. Having a purpose.
I watched every single one, except for the very last one, or the one also before that. I was absolutely gutted I missed the ending, which I recorded and did not catch the end. It obviously started late, because I always used to put an extra ten minutes past the finishing time. I kept looking in the papers each week, wondering why it was not on and wondering when it would be on again, not realising it had completely finished altogether. It wasn’t until I was an adult and having access to the internet and Googling it, that I had learnt it had completely finished and how it ended.
For some years now, (but I don’t know how long exactly,) I own the whole episodes on DVD’s. As a late-deafened adult, I totally rely on subtitles to watch anything, so when I ordered the DVD set from Amazon which the DVD’s are import, I made sure it said that they had subtitles. Which it did. But when it came to playing them on my all-region DVD player, I only found that the subtitles were only on the extras, not on the series itself. I was disappointed, but because I needed the escape again, I kept them and watched them all. But watching only, as I could not follow the conversations and the character, Vincent is not a person you can even lip-read for a start.

Fast forward to the present, I bought a second external CD/DVD player for my laptop of a different model, so I could just play my American import DVD’s. Not only do I have ‘Beauty and the Beast,’ I have ‘Sue Thomas FBEye’ complete series too. (No problem with Sue Thomas though, the subs were available when watching them on my old DVD player.) When I played a ‘Beauty and the Beast’ DVD, to check it worked on this new external player ok, I could see there was an options for closed captions and so I clicked on it and before my eyes I seen subtitles pop up to what was being said at the time. (Theme music that starts at the beginning and the words of Vincent.) So I am expecting this will happen on every one now. I was so happy to see this and cried with tears of joy. This TV series means so much to me and I can’t see I will ever get bored with it. It’s my escape still, when I watch them, but the only difference is I won’t be creating new scenes and jump into that world when I go to bed at night, as I did when I was a kid.

A year ago, on 5th February…

I don’t know if you have realised, but I have only realised how my blog was one year old, on 5th February. It all started with my first post, Hello world.
When I first started writing this blog back then, I did not realise how long I would write this for. I did not have any long-term goals for it, other than this blog be therapeutic for me.
I have met some lovely supportive people via WordPress and who are mostly bloggers themselves. You have shown me what a supportive, lovely bunch you can all be, to say you have not met me personally and only know me through my blog. (Although there are friends who read this too and have met me, or know me personally in some way. Some are even from when I wrote my deaf blog.) Although I have said thank you before for following my blog, I thank you again.

I have expressed some triggering contents in my posts. A lot of them was at the beginning of my blog journey and for those who have read this blog from the beginning, will know certain things I had to do, to help me on my healing journey after counselling had finished. I also revealed bullying and the effects. (As if I did not have enough already in my childhood.)

This year, I revealed for the first time publicly, how one time I was raped some years ago. I shared this after #ITSNOTOK campaign. I felt such relief by sharing this, than I personally expected and weight off my shoulders. I suppose because I felt shame underneath, which I know I should not. It goes to show rape can happen anywhere and #ITSNOTOK.

I have learnt from feedback received, that this blog is a positive inspiration for you in lots of ways. I am happy to hear this and while I feel the need to write, I will continue. This blog covers a wide variety of things as I grow. It will still cover depression etc… whether I share my bad days, or news I learn from elsewhere, but also it will still cover my wellbeing at times and learning I do. There is also my garden that has caught interest with some readers last year. I do plan to share further this year, than I have already. So if you want to continue following the garden progress, then do keep reading.

Unseen

(Content warning: childhood trauma, bullying, abuse and rape.)

Behind closed doors, it was unseen to the extent what was happening in my childhood. How it all affected me and how it affected my mum.

People knew what my dad was, like they thought. But they did not know exactly what he was like.
Until the last few months recently, while chatting about it with family members, they also did not know what he was fully like as they thought.

“If I’ll have known,” they said.

What would they have done?

At school I am bullied for my hair colour, for being quiet, and for what I wear. I chose a school where uniform was a must, to be like everyone else I thought. Yet, I was still made to feel different.

They bullied me verbally. If I wasn’t getting some line of verbal abuse already at home from dad at times, or witnessing some verbal abuse of some kind.

Those bullies feeling great in what they are doing, knocking down my self-esteem, but because of the unseen.
Hey, I already had no self-esteem!

Years down the line, I get married.
It should have been bliss.
But no, I found I was at hands of verbal abuse again and one time of rape.
The difference with me at that point, I wasn’t going to stay and put up with it. I already gave two chances when it came to respect, but it would start again after two weeks of bliss.
I left after the rape, which was the first and last time that was going to happen to me.
But again, this is the unseen. No one see’s what is going on what should be a happy marriage.
After a few months of chatting living back with my mum, I talked about the full extent of that relationship I was in and I realised that had I stayed in this relationship, it would have been the same as my mum was with dad.

Damage from that relationship affects me today. But not as it did.

Verbal abuse is just as bad as physical abuse. If someone experiences this and does not share with you, you will not know the unseen, because you are not there.

This post created after seeing the Daily Prompt: Unseen

My very personal posts of 2016, that started off this blog.

If it wasn’t for offloading and using this blog as part of my therapy to accept what happened to me, then I probably would not have started this blog. Writing this blog has helped me to move forward and some things that were really troubling me, to let go of the guilt that I should not have had to start with.
Most of these following posts all have a trigger warning of some kind, stated at the beginning of the post.

Bullies! Do you think?

Bullies, do you think when you bully a person?
Whether you bully on your own, or in a group?
Do you think you are cool?
Do you feel good at the end of the day?
Can you sleep at night?
Do you think what you got out of it?
What did you get out of it?
Is your life that shit, you want to make someone else’s shit?

Do you think of the negative effect you have given, to that person you bullied?
Did you think how you knocked them down, whether they were already down and hurting before you started?
That person could already be having some sort of shit life, that you don’t see. A shit life at home.
Did you think? Did you?

Do you think how low they could go, like try to hurt or kill themselves?
Did you? How do you feel?
I hope you feel like shit, because people you bully don’t deserve that kind of shit.
It’s on your hands, if you push them that far.

So next time, think, before you act and choose the cooler option of being a friend, rather than a bully.

by Elizabeth Fisher

Copyright© 7th December 2016

#If depression were a choice

I created this post after inspiration from blogger, ‘Summer Starts to Shine,’ where she created a post of the same name: ‘#If depression were a choice.

#If depression were a choice

If depression were a choice, I would not have witnessed as a child of the ups and very bad downs of my mum’s mental health. I would not have worried whether she would disappear again, like before.

If depression were a choice, after seeing how it affected me personally as a child and, also how it affects other people and their families, then I would not choose depression myself. Because after all, it is no fun.

If depression were a choice, I would not struggle to get out of bed some mornings, or sometimes worry about the day ahead.

If depression were a choice, I would not have wished at one time that I was dead and that I was of no use to this world.

If depression were a choice, then I would choose to not have depression. But unfortunately it is not that easy.

If depression were a choice, then I would not have needed the doctor, counsellor or my medication.

If depression were a choice, then my mind would choose to stop dwelling on things.

If the bad experiences of childhood (including bullying, if I did not have enough already,) and early adulthood had not happened, then I would be able to stop my brain having the memories of those days and re-living them.

Until you have been in my shoes, or other people’s shoes of people suffering mental health, then you do not know. So please do not judge.

What I experience to another person it is different. I know how my experiences affect me, but it does not mean I know fully how it affects the next person. I can only be there to support, or to just listen.

Receiving comments of the following I write below, that I have heard personally myself over the years, are not helpful at all.

  • You can choose not to dwell on things
  • It happened to you a long time ago and so you should put it behind you
  • There’s no point living in the past
  • Isn’t it time you moved on?

So until you have been in our shoes, suffered what we have suffered, you will not know how exactly how our past affects our mental health. So do not judge, but listen to our stories and try to understand how it affects us.

If depression were a choice, then I would choose not to have depression.

Did you have anyone to look up to, as a child?

I did not have any one to look up to as a child. Did you?

As you know, my childhood was not great by how my father behaved and I grew up only knowing mental illness, because of my mum having it.

To look up to, I mean I did not have anyone who I knew who inspired me, or who said I can do this. I don’t really remember receiving any praise and when I did receive something, it was always negativity.

The only time I remember my dad encouraging me as a child, was when he suggested, if I wanted, to make notes of what I learn from wildlife programmes we just to watch. I could then write it up in neat and he would buy me a hardback book to put it in. I loved the idea and so I did do this, writing what I had learnt. Rest of the time with may dad was when he would mouth off. More so when he had his drink.

If I wasn’t well, he would say I was putting it on. My mum knowing different would take me to the doctors and find out I was not well as her gut instinct told her. Why my dad would think I would make up being ill I do not know, but those of you who knew my dad personally, would know I would not dare to pretend to be ill with my dad.

My mum was not a confident person and so as well as struggling to show her love to me, (but I knew she loved me,) I have never known her to say you can do this, or well done. When I was shown as a child to do joined up handwriting, after asking my mum to teach me, I remember being taught and enjoying it, but not there was no well done, that’s good, or an encouragement tone of some kind. My mum was one for bottling things up, something at one time I used to do, until my 20’s.

I remember at school the only praise I got was an art teacher who said if I keep this up, I should get a C, in my exam grade. The rest of the time was a fight through comprehensive school, because my memories are negative ones, due to being bullied. They were the years I felt alone.

Is it any wonder I struggle to keep positive with myself, have that ‘can-do’ attitude, or stop calling myself !

Fighting to keep my confidence gained and to increase my self-esteem, I have done myself, throughout adulthood. So this is a self-learning experience for me. But I am also in a right group of people, whether near or far, where I am meeting motivated and inspiring people and some of those people have been encouraging me, with a ‘can-do’ attitude and tips, in different learning journeys I am experiencing. 😊