Archive for April, 2012

I have to be evaluated

Posted in mental illness with tags , , , , , on April 8, 2012 by morgueticiaatoms

sat 4/7/12 11:53 am

Well, I got a letter from Soc Sec reguarding my disability claim.
They made an appointment for me on the 20th with a psychologist in Springfield.
This is fine by me, but baffling.
Psychologists can’t prescribe medication, they can only do talk therapy and hand the patient off to an actual psychiatrist for medications.
So what does this person add to the mix that will actually clear things up?
The letter’s clear that they need further evidence to determine if I am disabled or not and while this psychologist will play no part in deciding whether or not I am disabled…
I’m confused.
I’ll be there, with bells on.
And if they deny my claim, I will appeal.
I am trying to get back on my feet but I have been through more hell in the last three years with my illnesses than ever before, so I don’t see why another six months or year then another review would hurt anything. I am trying, but as these journals attest, I am struggling every minute of every day.

Psychological evaluations scare me. They are so subjective and by the book, then interpreted by whatever bias or philosophy the “doctor” has.
From a psychologist’s point of view, nothing is a chemical disorder and everything is learned or behavioral.
That’s been my experience anyway.
I remember well my experience with the psychologist who promised that he could use hypnosis to stabilize my moods and rid me of my panic.
See how well that worked out?

I didn’t even used to be paranoid. Not beyond the joking ha ha “everyone’s out to insult me” spiel.
The last three years I have experienced true paranoia, thinking even my own child was out to get me.
That’s a disability.
I am clearer now, but as today’s almost-bought-a-book thing proves, I am far from out of the woods.

I think it may be time to break down my walls. I have been so obsessed with keeping certain things locked up inside, lest too much honesty result in some well meaning but ignorant power that be taking my child away from me.
I paste on the happy face because the counselor tells me I must,everyone has to do it that way.
I just hide inside myself, inside these journals.
I did let slip last counseling session about that near suicidal bout during my last monthly curse.
Only now it’s become less about the curse, and more about me not being able to see daylight at the end of the tunnel.
Anymore, I can’t even see the light at the end of tunnel that might be an oncoming freight train.
I have been on this hamster wheel for so long, rinse, lather, repeat, the moods like being possessed by a demon,immune to exorcism…
(That’s a writer’s metaphor, not an insane delusion.)
I don’t believe I am crazy.
I believe I could very well crack, though, I had a lot dumped on me and I was carrying a lot to begin with.
I need to take baby steps. I know now that I am not useless, I have value…if I can just climb out of the rabbit hole and stay out long enough to stay afloat.
I never can manage that, though. Think my longest span of functioning highly, on or off meds, is about eight to nine months. That’s in my records.
I fly high, I muddle through, but eventually…I am in psychiatric quicksand, at the mercy of moods that last ten seconds to 12 hours.

Now I have this psych eval hanging over my head, knowing too much honesty could get my kid taken away from me and have me committed, but not telling the truth in its entirety  will be seen as subterfuge and fraud because I’m not really ill.
Talk about a catch 22.
And the doctor isn’t even the one making the decision, the adjudicator is.
I don’t get the point.
Why don’t they talk to me personally? Talk to the counselor, the job lady. Look at my dictionary thick file, observe even while pregnant I went off the rails without medication, and even with medication, still went under the surface under the stress and strain.
What speaks louder than the truth,in front of your eyes?

At least this time I had the nerve to rip the letter open, for better or worse, instead of,like that one power bill, letting it fester in the letter holder for three weeks before working up the nerve to look inside.

Now, if you’ll pardon me, pretzel gut has an appointment with the bathroom.

2 A.M. Borg Invalidation Rant

Posted in cyclothymia, mental illness with tags , , on April 1, 2012 by morgueticiaatoms

4/1/12 1:49 am Sun

Talk about my equilibrium being thrown off. Dad and his crew were here almost four hours yesterday, and they did buy pizza for lunch but Spook and I were just so exhausted it was a mercy when they finally left and we could go nap. Unfortunately, she wasn’t on board with that idea while I couldn’t even keep my eyes open. I let her fuss it out because she was obviously tired.
Next thing I know it’s 7pm.
We both got up for about a half hour, but she was whiny and eye rubbing so I put her back to bed and fell face first back into mine.
Where I kept drifting off and waking up about every ninety minutes. Waiting in anticipation for her to wake.

She’s still down, and I’ve been awake since a little after 12 a.m., sleepy and bleary eyed but my mind churning with thoughts.
Now I can’t even turn them into a coherent rant.
It’s like throwing a deck of cards into the air, then trying to decide where to dive in and start picking out the face cards.

I know my anxiety and irritation were high grade yesterday. Turns out the bouncing basketball for hours outside my bed room window isn’t kids at all, but two of the young red neck guys from next door. I wanted to give them a splenectomy free of charge. Then there are kids riding bikes and shrieking and wandering the park like bands of noise makers. I’m still not processing stressors very well, ya know, like wanting to install a mute button on that stupid dog next door as well as its owners who can’t seem to converse without being pissed off and swearing at each other at all times. And oh, yes, the drunken cacophany on the other side of me, those people never stop partying, no matter time or day, you can always hear them blasting music and whooping it up.
I guess if I could describe myself in one word these days,it would be “irritable.”
Which according to the other bipolar bloggers is a pretty standard issue symptom of being bipolar.
Only when I am irritated, it turns into anger, but I have been so socially programmed, I find ways to invalidate my own anger or consider the repurcussions of letting that anger surface,so it gets converted into sheer anxiety and panic.
It’s a whole cycling process, and when you have a litany of physical symptoms that make your life a living hell, you just really want to round up the so called mental health professionals and lock them in a room with you for a week. Let them deal with your ups and downs and anxieties and tears. Let them witness it first hand, minus their cure all of doping us out of our gourds, and see if they still suggest breathing exercises and positive thought.
See if dealing with you personally through not just the high functioning phases but the worse parts of the cycle changes their “suck it up” mentality.

Every day I get out of bed and don’t kill myself, I am sucking it up.
Every day I don’t let my emotions drive me to ram my car into the son of a bitch on the cell phone who nearly slamed into me…
I am sucking it up.
But sucking it up is necessity, it does not make anything better or easier. It’s just one more cog in the cyclothymia wheel, adding to how crappy you feel about yourself because even the professionals and people who supposedly care about you have invalidated you to within an inch of your life and you start collecting resentments for always having to “suck it up” instead of just going on a rant that might actually clear your head.
Yes, that counselor seriously hurt me, and when I am hurt, it turns into the anger and hatred. I was doing what every other counselor had told me to do for the better part of 15 years, and she cops that attitude?
I’m afraid this counselor/client match is about as successful as trying to get oil and water to mix.

Not that anyone would listen to me, since I am the one with mental problems therefore I can’t possibly have any objective true emotions about what does or does not help me. Everyone else knows  best because they have alphabet soup next to their names to indicate they have education and experience therefore they know it all about every individual on the planet.
The mental health care people are like the Borg.
You either see things their way or they will make nasty little notations in your chart about how you are combative or inflexible or won’t do the necessary work to help yourself…Or my favorite, you refuse to defer to their professional advice therefore you are not cooperating in your own treatment.
Hmm…You want me to take pills that don’t work and turn me into a non functional zombie but I am supposed to smile and be cool with this?????
Bloody hell, I think the professionals are nuttier than I am.
The professional detachment they are taught to affect is a hindrance because they cease to see people as human beings and they take this one size fits all approach that makes me mad enough to put a bunch of nails in my mouth and spit them out rapid fire like a machine gun. Would some empathy and compassion really hinder their process? They are, after all, supposed to be doing what is best for us. Even if their training tells them to maintain distance and logic, if the client needs a softer touch, shouldn’t they be required to take that approach?

Oh, wait, the mentally ill have no rights, we’re just pawns in the system’s chess game from hell who either get on board or get tossed off the boat.

Then blamed when we drown.

I am in a precarious stage of my bipolar right now. I am still cycling, due to the seasonal affect change, and one hour I feel all strong and badass and capable…then the next I am nearly in tears and looking for a rafter to hang a noose from because I just can’t keep spinning on this hamster wheel of futility.
This is a dangerous place for me and I would know because I have been there so many times before.
I will be maintaining, often giving the illusion that I am doing great, but under the surface…I am treading water and getting snoutfulls of it every time my head dips under the surface.
One major stressor is all it takes to send me flying over that edge into my non functional space.
I live in daily terror of that space because no matter how many times it has happened and how stringently determined I have been to spot the signs and head them off…I always fall down the rabbit hole into the darkness,and then have to spend months digging my way out…only to fall back down when the season changes or my stress level boils over.

Hmm…I don’t know where this rant originated from, or if it makes sense, but I kinda like it. What I don’t like is that I have rubbed half the letters off this keyboard and my fat fingers and blind eyes keep making typos which slows me down from getting all of this mental poison out of my mind.

I think what frustrates me now is that while I am trying to face my fears and panic and trying to live a normal life…it’s still just a facade because I can’t be honest with people about how I am really feeling. They run or dismiss me, they don’t want to know. How can you call people like that a friend? A friend is there for you, no matter what. But I have never really known that, every time I let down my shields and let someone see the true me, not just manic high functioning me, it alienates them and they ditch me.
Other than the few people from the blogging community and Bex, I have no one, in the flesh, so to speak, that I can turn to and talk to about all this crap.
It’s a lonely feeling.
I don’t even have a counselor I am comfortable talking to, because her style is just counterproductive to me as an individual.

Pissed off.
Anxiety ridden.

Screw it, I am going back to bed, it would seem the only time my poor gums get a rest from the blood drawing teeth gnashing is when I am asleep and judging from the salty taste in my mouth and how sore my gums are, it’s safe to say I have been gnashing for a solid two hours now.
When all you want to do, when all you look forward to is the nothingness of sleep…I would hardly say you are cured of your depression.
The Borg, of course, are clueless so they’d invalidate me on that one.

It’s just a good thing I have so much spite and fire in me, or the very people who are supposed to help me would be the ones pushing me to find that rafter and rope.
Kind of like treating eczema with itching powder and going, “Why are you still itching?”

In the immortal words of Homer Simpson, DOH!!!!!!

Invalidated and miserable

Posted in anxiety disorders, mental illness with tags , , , on April 1, 2012 by morgueticiaatoms

Thu 3/22/12 5:53 pm

I can’t convince Spook to eat as of yet, but at least she is bathed and in her jammies. I vacuumed but the damn thing is clogged so it spat out more than it picked up and even though shown many times how to unclog it, I am still lost when it comes to bloody machinery.

Still need to tackle the cat boxes and the dishes, though there aren’t that many dishes, I just don’t want anyone coming in and saying, Oh,look her home is a mess, she’s not a fit mother…Martha Stewart and vacuum nazi I am not, but I am honestly trying very hard here. I just keep getting behind.

I’m coming to the conclusion that,while in theory, counseling is an excellent idea…in practice, it can also be a negative thing. Because when I left my counseling appointment today, I felt worse than when I went in. Completely mocked and invalidated. At one point in her dull flat tone she said, “You’ve been ranting for ten minutes.”
It was like being slapped across the face, because every counselor I have ever had told me to rant away,it’s what therapy is for, to vent and get it all out there. Then they would validate my fears and we’d discuss healthy ways for me to cope. Not this one.
Making me feel chastised was a huge mistake.
I don’t dislike her, sometimes I like her a lot.
But her style of therapy is honestly doing more harm than good. She seems to think I need the tough love jaded prickly style counseling and it is sooo not helping.
If anything, it is making me more angry, resentful, and self isolating. If I can’t even get partial validation from my therapist, what hope do I have of ever cutting it in the “real world” where people are very cruel as far as mental illness is concerned.
Half the time she is typing, half the time she is sitting there, just looking everywhere around the room, as if bored. And while that might be my interpretation, I am betting if the sessions were videotaped others would get the same impression because body language isn’t really all that difficult to decipher.
Plus, my paranoia has kicked in with her because at one point, yes, I was ranting about the Melatonin issue (if she understood my scarring from the whole Dr Colen thing, she’d know why I am this way) and then she whipped out the ranting thing, and she was like, “So tell her you’re still taking the melatonin.”
And I was like, “You mean,lie?”
“Why not?”
And I said, “It’s wrong.”
And now I’m like, was she testing me, seeing if I know right from wrong, or if I was willing to lie to make things easier on myself…Counselors do test people from time to time, to get a gauge of their sincerity,so it’s not like it’s a far out notion.
She did make a good suggestion, I can’t remember exactly what the formal terminology was, but she suggested I write a pre-psych visit letter to the shrink expressing my concerns so her staff can make sure she reads it before our next appointment. I think it’s a good idea, but at this point, I am not optimistic. Ignoring  my concerns and invalidating me seem to be the order of the day.
No self pity, just an observation.
I know counselors and doctors can’t coddle patients and let them be in denial, but I honestly don’t like this “school of hard knocks” treatment. If it were helpful, I would be all about it. But when you go in, stressed to the max, depressed, and feeling crappy about yourself, and someone makes you feel even more crappy about yourself…Well, surely one can see how that might be more damaging than helpful.
She even tried to tell me that I bring most of my stress and panic on myself.
At which point I went very Dr. Spock and disagreed and told her that my entire well being counts on that disability check, so considering the negative possibilities should they deny it really isn’t that far off base. It’s a legitimate concern.
She makes me feel like I am being asinine.
Which in turn makes me feel like she is being more hurtful than helpful.
I search my heart, my soul, my gut, so see if there’s a chance I am just being spoiled or bratty or unfair…
But I have been in therapy longer than she’s been practicing as a therapist, so I think aside from her book learning, I might have a little more experience and insight into this whole thing. Not ego, just a fact. She has book knowledge, this is my life, firsthand.
I want to see it as a different styles not meshing thing.
She seems to agree that I am still disabled and should fight for my disability in the event they deny it,although she feels the chance of that is slim.
But at the same time, she’s basically telling me I am making myself sick.
I don’t agree. I am high strung, I admit that, and I do tend to imagine the worst case scenario. But three years with The Donor, who worried about nothing outside his job, made me this neurotic. Someone has to be the adult and consider the repurcussions of things not turning out sunshine and rainbows.
It may not do a damn bit of good, but I have been hard wired to believe if I don’t worry about these things, then I am being a lackadaisical airhead.
Wrong or right, I do worry, because I care.
My child is my life. I lose my way to support her, and my whole world crumbles, to the point of feeling like suicide is my only option, which I told her. And of course, she played the guilt card, “How will your daughter feel growing up, knowing her mother killed herself?” And I was so pissy at that point, I muttered, “Why not, her father abandoned her.”
She doesn’t seem to get that without that disability check, I can’t keep a roof over my kid’s head. That makes me insanely  nervous, and I don’t find that to be neurotic.
I absolutely hate being invalidated.
I told her, “This doesn’t work for me.”
She says, “This doesn’t work for anyone.”

I can’t help but think of back in the 90’s when I was seeing Roni and after a couple of years, she finally said, “I can’t do anything further for you, you need someone with a different counseling style.”
I was mortifed and feeling rejected and I was especially infuriated when they changed me to a male counselor…
As it turned out, Paul  was the best thing that ever happened to me aside from getting the right diagnosis.
He was a wonderful therapist, his method meshed beautifully with my needs, and I actually got better and learned more under his care than any other doctor or therapist.
And I owe it to Roni, for having the guts to say she’d hit the wall with her abilities to help me and passing me off to someone who had a different style.
And it worked beautifully.

I don’t think I am going to get that lucky this time. No blessings in disguise here.
And that she totally doesn’t understand the panic…that she blames it all on me…That makes me so angry and invalidated that I want to scrap therapy all together. I don’t need anything that makes me worse instead of better.
I don’t want to be unfair, I don’t want to be bratty…
But the whole Roni/Paul thing taught me something, even if at the time I thought I was being punished for not recovering in a certain time frame.
Sometimes a certain therapy style stops working,or never did work, for a patient and you have to be willing to swallow your pride and admit, I am not helping this person anymore…
I admire Roni for being able to do that.
I admire Paul for being the first and only one to truly help me.

I am miserable with this current arrangement. It’s making me worse, not better. I need validation, I need empathy, I need a softer touch.
And above all else, I need to be able to trust my therapist.
I may sometimes like her, but I don’t trust her.
I think she mocks me in little ways and that she doesn’t take me seriously.
And much like The Donor, it’s one more situation where every emotion and thought I have is going to be invalidated and made to seem utterly asinine and silly.

I hate this.
I hate going into therapy to vent then feeling like a naughty little kid when my foul language slips out.
I am not free to be who I am.
I am pouring out my heart and soul to this woman…and she may as well be drying her fingernails after painting them, for all the interest and concern I am getting from her. Which I have no doubt is also my fault.

God,I sound so self pitying and I am really not. I made a mess of my life, I own it. But Paul taught me to expect validation, and now I am, and this counselor is basically from another school of thought where validation isn’t only not given, some mockery is thrown in.

It’s not enough of an injury to be mentally ill.
No, no, no.
The universe has to add insult to the equasion.

My mood: DIAF