Four Years Ago Today

Four years ago today

You finally had the last say

But still you plague me deep inside

Never really able to hide

Words so harsh they made me cry

Words so mean I wondered why

Why did no one know

A way long time ago

That mental illness can be passed

Even to the very last

I thank you Mom, for this gift

I hope it gave you a lift

Did It Really . . . ?

So many years have passed since I left home.  I moved out at 17, when I went away to college.  Even the memories from that time are vague.  I soon learned I could drown it all out with a bottle of vodka, missing classes due first to hangovers, then the fact that I was too drunk to go to class.  My fourth semester, I totally bombed out at school, which resulted in the loss of two scholarships.

It only took me about a month to decide I had to move away again.  I joined the Navy.  Boot Camp was difficult for me.  I was going through withdrawal from the alcohol, but I didn’t want them to know that.  I wanted to get through it as quickly as possible, so I could move on to a somewhat less strict environment.  When I was diagnosed with mono, I was afraid that would hold me back in my training, that I wouldn’t graduate with the rest of my class.  But I did, though I wasn’t actually at the ceremony, due to my illness.

This proved to be my downfall however, which eventually led to discharge from the military.  Their reasoning  – “Unsuitability due to alcohol abuse.  Not recommended for reenlistment.”  That took me all of nine months to accomplish.  I was drowning in alcohol uncontrollably, with no clear way out that I could see.

Those memories though, continued to haunt me.  Some were very distinct, while others were just vague memories that I couldn’t bring to the forefront, but still knew they were there.  I remember fear.  At night, my heart would pound from the fear,  causing me to think that I was hearing his footsteps coming down the hall to my room.  Sometimes they were, sometimes not.  But this was tearing up the insides of a young child, eventually a young adult, with no clear path that would lead me to safety.  I dreamed of running away to live in an abandoned cabin in the woods.  I had read a book when I was in Second grade, titled, “The Boxcar Children.”  It was a story about three young children, who ran away from their grandfather’s house.  They lived in an old boxcar that was still on the tracks, in the woods.

It has taken years upon years to reach the point where I am today.  I’m not sure I know exactly where that is, but I now have psychiatric diagnoses, which explain why my life is the way it is now.  It explains the odd symptoms, which in the past led me to attempted suicide, more than once.  Thankfully, i survived those attempts.  I have been in psycho-therapy for more years than I can even count.  But I have progressed greatly. 

My blog clearly describes my life with childhood sexual abuse.  When your abuser is your father, well . . .

Taboo Word Challenge for 9/22/16

You can see today’s taboo word below. Visit Eric, author of the All In A Dad’s Work blog and creator of the challenge, for details on participating.

 taboo

Click the blue frog to read others taking part in this fun challenge 

 

 

Being A Survivor

Taboo Word – Day 2

What is it that you can find, deep within the mind of a survivor? Being a survivor myself, I’d have to say that the answer is not that simple. Some things that remain, are often things that you don’t want to remember, ever. I believe that I have some of these myself.

I have been going to therapy for a good 30 years or more, and I am still working on getting past thoughts and patterns that affect my behavior on a daily basis. Some of the memories that I have recovered, have helped me to understand why I’m the way that I am.

These memories are ones that explain why I have the diagnoses that I have. Some of these memories explain the poor self-image, poor self-worth, or inappropriate emotional responses, causing poor reasoning, avoidance of people or places and exaggerated emotional responses.

They can also cause the impulsiveness that leads me to spending in excess, emotional outbursts, and relationships that are short, and often over emotional. My long-term relationships have lasted for five years each, and I’ve been through and used up three of them.

Now I live alone, and everything that I act on, is still based on exaggerated emotional responses to the stimuli around me. This has been my life for the past 16 years. I take part in outside activities, like Bible studies and wheelchair sporting events, but everything is done (hah!) in a way that protects me from experiencing those emotions that are almost always inappropriate to the situation.

So I spend most of my time alone in my apartment, with only my cat, all the things I take part in on the Internet, and Netflix and my big screen TV. One person that lives in this building, understands a lot of my interactions with others, and the thoughts behind my actions.

But now, my therapist wants me to start relying more on my peers, and less on professionals for support. This is very difficult for me to carry out, but I make it seem to her, that I am changing this behavior. This is not easy for me.  Not at all.

You can see today’s taboo word below. Visit Eric, author of the All In A Dad’s Work blog and creator of the challenge, for details on participating.

 

Click the blue frog to read others taking part in this fun challenge

BPD – What It Means For Me

I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder many years ago, and have been taking pretty much the same medications over this time. I have BPD. I know I have it. I recognize the symptoms when they get worse. I wouldn’t dream of stopping them, for fear of the consequences.

It has long been thought that BPD was caused by abuse as a child, or some other horrendous trauma experienced when young. It has been brought to my attention that in order for someone to develop BPD, there has to be one or both parents who suffer from this disorder. This disorder is passed on genetically.

Without the genetics, BPD does not occur, despite popular belief, because of chronic abuse as a child, alone. The gene must also be present. I realized a couple years ago, that my mother must have had the same disorder. Based on the way that she treated me, along with the sexual abuse from my father, I developed BPD.

There has to be at least five symptoms a person must have to be diagnosed with this disorder.

  1. Unstable or poorly regulated emotional responses – anger, anxiety, depression
  2. Inappropriate intense anger that is difficult to control
  3. Chronic feelings of emptiness
  4. Self-damaging acts such as excessive spending, unsafe sex, substance abuse, binge eating, and
  5. Suicidal ideation, acts, threats, self-injurious behavior
  6. Persistent, unstable self-image
  7. Paranoid ideation or severe dissociative episodes
  8. behaviors from most people, impaired social reasoning under stress
  9. Frantic acts due to chronic fear of abandonment, very intense and unstable relationships

To be diagnosed with BPD, five of these nine symptoms must be present.  When I finally learned about Borderline Personality Disorder, it was sort of an ‘aha’ moment.  Now, things that I feel or do, I understand why.  I suffer from eight of these nine symptoms.

I understand why I will do almost anything to prevent what I perceive as abandonment.  I understand why all of my relationships were either inappropriate, extremely intense and unstable.  I understand why I have a great deal of new debt, that has occurred after the agreement with the debt management program,  that I would not apply for anymore credit cards, and this new debt is due to three  new credit cards.  I understand why I became a chronic alcoholic (Nearly 17 years sober now).  I understand the cuts on my arms, the overdoses, and all the threats of suicide, and all of the psychiatric hospitalizations.

I understand now, why I am me, and why I still do many of the things on that list.  Do you now understand me?

 

A New Beginning

Another year has passed away,
I haven’t had a lot to say,
It’s hard to express all that’s there,
It’s hard to find someone who’ll care.

I often think I’m on my own,
But, in many ways I’ve grown,
No longer need help every week,
Though, it sometimes I do seek.

I am a stronger person now,
I got here but I’m not sure how,
Perhaps it’s faith of what’s above,
And His all abiding love.

I received a gift today,
I want to find the words to say,
Thank you all who’ve held me near,
Thank you all who’ve held me dear.

Throughout the years I’ve often heard,
That action speaks, louder than words,
I hope my actions really show,
To all of those I’ve come to know.

Thank you God for the love you give,
Thank you friends who’ve helped me live,
Through a year of growth and pain,
A new year has now come again.

Why Can’t I Stop?

First it was people,
Never enough,
No one understood,
Living was tough.

Needing this and needing that,
What did I really need?
I tried everything I could get,
But nothing would soothe that need.

A drink here,
A smoke over there,
The more that I got,
I had no cares.

A life like mine may never see,
The end of the driving need,
I stopped the drink, and the smoke,
I planted a very small seed.

But as this seed continued to grow,
Along with it did the need,
How was I ever to know,
There was no end to this greed.

A Letter To My Self

Today, I see the hair that’s grey,
Today, I see a brand new day,
Today, I see an aching soul,
Today, I see within that soul.
Yesterday, came and went so fast,
Yesterday, is not meant to last,
Yesterday, I did not speak my mind,
Yesterday, the words, I could not find.
Today, I see all these things in my head,
Today, I think of all that I’ve read,
Today, I see myself so small,
Today, I see, I don’t have to go.

“Borderline Personality Disorder”

Because Mom wasn’t ever there,
When any leave, then they don’t care.
They’re going to leave me behind,
And never again will I find.
Find that one who helps me think,
These days, I don’t take a drink.
But if she’s gone for just a day,
Then gone she will forever stay.
My fears, they run so very deep,
Relationships are hard to keep.
But it really all is in my mind,
If I look hard, someday I’ll find.
That people don’t really stay away,
Our relationship is here to stay.
But deep inside, I still don’t fight,
The feeling that I’ve not been right.
Separation I cannot take,
My fear, I fear, I cannot fake.
Please come and let me know,
That you’ll not actually go.

For Me There Is No In Between

I’m either all the way up
Or all the way down,
All the way in,
Or all the way out.
For me there is no in between.

I am totally glad,
Or totally sad,
Totally negative,
Or totally positive.
For me there is no in between.

My feelings are skewed,
Due to the way I grew up,
I learned to be shrewd,
To cover it all up,
For me there is no in between.

My fears run deep,
They control my life,
It’s hard for me to keep,
Up this way of life,
For me there is no in between.

If I’m thinking quite negative,
I need to turn it around,
And come up with some positive,
To find even ground, but,

For me there is no in between.

– van –