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Recovery Journals / Re: Sceal's third journal
« Last post by Sceal on Today at 02:58:08 PM »
Thank you.


I cried for 3 days after the conversation with roomie. And then I felt this emptiness. Like nothing really matters. All of my things doesn't matter. My art doesn't matter. If I get out of bed doesn't matter.
I did though, get out of bed.

Then I got to my GP appointment. We talked a little around it, and she reminded me again that it is the healthy choice. For both him and I. To move apart. That right now it'll hurt, and it will hurt for a while.  The conversations aren't done being held, and each time we (roomie and I) will talk about it, I will probably break down and cry. But people aren't meant to be continuing living with their exes for such an extended time.  The emptiness was still there, but a little lighter I suppose. I got my blood drawn and then I got my b12 shot. And I went for a hike on a mountain-hill that I haven't been to for years, and years. It's not even that much out of the way for me when I go visit my parents. So I'm not quite sure why I never go. But it was a lovely walk, and it helped lifting my spirits.

I've been seeking comfort in my parents pets alot this summer. And each time I feel really low I go visit them and cuddle the dogs and the day gets better. Not good, but better.

I ended up with a call with a friend of mine in a different time-zone. We talk a few times a year, but we're so similar in the way we process things and how we work about art. (she's an artist as well), and we're both interessted in some of the same things. The time just flies by whenever I talk with her. She always makes me smile, and I get so energetic, passionate and inspired when I talk with her. It was a really nice break from all the sadness. I got alot of new thoughts and ideas for my work. And I even started talking with this graphic designer I hadn't really dared to talk to the next day. And that gave me more ideas. And I even managed to solve some difficult obstacles work-wise I had been struggling with for months.

So I felt okay on thursday. Friday I had a conversation with Mr. T at the SA support centre. He said that from what he knows of me, which isn't alot yet, that it is apparent that I don't really know who I am - I don't know what I like and where my boundaries goes. Because my survival techniques have been letting everyone get their way and their will. Friends, family, colleagues, strangers - everyone. Even when it's good things or safe for me to say no. I've just been surviving, and now that I'm not "only just surviving" anymore, it creates alot of confusion when it comes to relationships because I don't know where my boundaries goes. And he says it's quite natural that what I do need now is time on my own to figure this out. Not another partner. Not having to look after others.  It was nice hearing him say it. I guess, because I think he's right. And it lessens my guilt a little bit, atleast for the moment I'm talking with him.

I had a deep conversation with someone at work too, very unexpectedly. But nice. Difficult.

today, I decided I was going to clean up this appartment. I need space to work, and I need to have less mess around. At first it was nice. I got my desk clean. And I sorted some things. I got so drained from energy though. And now I'm tears again. I was packing things away, and thinking of what things is it that I will not be needing for the next 2 years? And that was all that got me derailing back down into the rabbit-hole of crying my eyes out.

I have no idea how I am going to manage packing up all my things without being utterly destroyed. Despite it being months and months away still.
Recovery Journals / Re: MoonBeam's Recovery Journal
« Last post by Sceal on Today at 02:43:53 PM »
Sounds like you've done quite the breakthrough for you. Did you do the burning of your thoughts and emotions around the topic? If so, did you feel it helped?
I always wondered if I should do something similar to it, but never been quite sure if it would actually work. :P

A trip with your boys sounds wonderful, and nothern England is so beautiful. I hope you'll have a most wonderful vacation.
Recovery Journals / Re: Tee's first journal
« Last post by Sceal on Today at 02:41:18 PM »
Dear Tee, I do hope that you will get the new position you've been applying for.
It sounds like it would be better for your health if you do get it, and also for your family life too.

It sounds like you might have to sit down with your H and tell him the reasons why you cannot allow your girl to spend so much time with your NM. That you don't want to put your girl in that position, and that you will constantly be worrying and be fearful which in return will make your health deteriorate. That he will have to help you find a different sollution if your girl can't join your H at the after school program.

It's a very hard and difficult situation you are in. I don't know how much your H knows about your past or about your relationship to your nm. And if he knows nothing, or very little this might be super difficult to bring up.

I hope there is a good solution for you all in this situation.
Depression / Re: Blood work correlation to depression?
« Last post by Sceal on Today at 02:35:31 PM »
My ex has a vitamin B12 deficiency, and when you're low it will certainly aggravate depression. It is quite notable to someone close, at least in my case. Anyway, if you're prone to depression its good to make sure you're at a healthy level of all your physical needs. Vitamins, minerals, sugar levels etc.

I fought against medication for a long time, but now I take some, and it makes a tremendous difference (in a good way). It wasn't a very easy process for me. It took about 5 years to find something I was comfortable with. But, I'd strongly agree if your doc is recommending it. Side effects are certainly a thing, and can be problematic, but if you can keep track of all that it will really help to find a good one for you.  It's a risk/reward thing I guess. There's a big reward, I think it is at least worth a try.  Anyway, all the best. Take care! :)

I have to take b12 injections every 2 months for the rest of my life due to a surgery I had that affects my uptake of it. My levels had been nearly double the amount of normal levels though, so my GP and I prolonged my last B12 injection about a month. But I've felt better after my last injection this week.

I'm generally very dilligent with bloodwork. I'm being tested quite frequently. Probably more than I've needed to be for the last few years. So I'm fairly sure I got that bit under control.

I was over-medicated during the first few years of my meeting with psychiatrists. It gave me long-lasting side effects that's present even today - 14 years later. For me, the side effects and the risk with them are not worth it. I ended up having to have surgery partially based due to them. I have tried out various of drugs for depression - and I have to say I never felt they did much for me at all other than give me side-effects that generally made me feel so much worse about myself. But this is my experience. I do know that these drugs do work better for other people. And for some people it is their life-line. And it's wonderful to hear everytime they do work for someone. So I am glad you have found medication that is working for you.
Depression / Re: Blood work correlation to depression?
« Last post by Sceal on Today at 02:28:43 PM »
Hi Sceal. I've talked with my GP about this a fair amount. My T recommended meds and I didn't want to go that route either--mostly because I'm afraid I will never be able to get off of them and I am afraid of taking meds--part of my trauma.
We talked about things I could try with diet and exercise, ways to help me sleep better naturally and supplements. B vitamins, L-Thianine (an amino acid) have been helpful to me. Not a cure-all, but I do find when I take them I notice a lift in the heaviness.  I think I'm deficient in most vitamins and minerals most of the time--something I'm wanting to look at as I move into learning about self-care. 

Also wanted to say there are links between iron deficiency or anemia and anxiety symptoms. So, yeah, I totally think its worth exploring these things with your GP.  I hope there is support there for you. Thanks for posting this. It's a really good reminder for me. I forget when I'm in it.

Yeah, I do follow all the advice when the depression hits: Continue eating generally healthy (although, we all know there will be unhealthy stuff as well - but just trying to keep the main meals healthy you know?), keep up the exercise - being active in some form or another regularly, stay in touch with people. Go do the social thing, even if it is exhausting, scary and overwhelming. Do the things I used to love,  you know, all the clever advice out there that is non-medicated ways of beating depressions.  But I feel that although it probably prevents me going into the deepest darkness, it doesn't lift me out of the depressions.

I haven't heard back from my GP, either she thinks I'm a loony or she's looking into it. Or she hasn't seen my message yet.

I didnt know about the iron deficiency though! That's interessting. Personally I am on iron everyday and will have to be for the rest of my life.
Introductory Post / Re: Hi everyone
« Last post by holidayay on Today at 02:03:32 PM »
I want to try writing out some of my flashbacks, in an attempt to maybe get them out of my head and send them off somewhere else. I'm not sure if this deserves a trigger warning or not?

It feels like every area of my life has been affected, and has some kind of trauma memory, still unhealed, attached to it.

Holidays were horrible. I'm having flashbacks to when mum overly strict mum, who used to not even let us out of the house/see friends and was generally against the idea of us having any type of fun - suddenly granted me permission to go on holiday at 16 with my older sister, who she used to despise the most. I guess it was because she wanted to know that I was there as a buffer, keeping an eye on my older sister, who was never afraid to go against my mum and do whatever she wanted, which used to make my mum rage beyond belief. My sister has sociopathic tendencies - she gets by in life by targeting people to use and abuse. On the one hand, I was happy to go on holiday - finally - but on the other, I felt sick that I'd been tasked with accompanying HER, of all people. The trip was horrendous. My sister targeted a rich, obviously desperate man as soon as she could when we were there. She laid it on thick with him and put on an act so convincing, even I was shocked and believed she had changed into becoming a loving, thoughtful, considerate person. The rest of the trip was about using this guy as much as possible for money, lifts and whatever else she wanted. I was just a side piece then. He took her jewellery shopping and she'd brag to me about the rings and other jewellery she got. I still remember the ring - it had a dangly chain on it and was beautiful. I felt sick watching all this and wanted no part of it. she lied through her teeth to him. And I was just there, supposed to stay quiet and do everything she wanted. I felt helpless. The helplessness is the worst thing - i believe its this that is at the root of trauma. I couldn't say anything because she had a temper so ginormous, which knew no bounds, that I knew she would have no qualms about raging in a public place and possibly even attacking me physically. After a few days of this misery, we were at a mall, and they had indoor snowboarding. I really wanted to do this, instead of being the silent sidepiece to their fake-love show. I got angry and couldn't control it. I told her she was selfish and i wanted to do what I wanted for a change. She raged and then put on crocodile tears in front of him before marching off, leaving me alone with this random guy, who I wanted nothing to do with. He tried to reason with me and at this point, i lost it. I felt so sorry for him, being convinced of her lies. He was talking about how special she was and that he was even thinking of marriage (he was an Arab man and i guess their traditions make quick marriage not so strange a thought). I told him the truth about her. I told him she routinely uses men and that what he was seeing wasn't the real her. I made him promise not to say anything, which he did.
The next day, I got fed up and decided since the trip was a right off anyway, I wasn't going to pander to her whims anymore, and would just stay inside the hotel by myself whilst she went with him. It was so horrible. I felt so alone and afraid and all i'd wanted was to finally have fun on holiday like all my friends and other 'normal' people seemed to do, instead of the daily trauma i faced back home, living with a narcissistic mother and variously affected other siblings. I was so angry, upset and felt like i was just not worth the kind of happiness and normality other people experienced and I was kidding myself to ever believe i would be.
I remember the paris hilton perfume that was the scent of the room - it was a bottle my sister had stolen from back home and had sprayed everywhere, and proudly showed me the day we'd arrived.
i remember the noise of the construction workers which seemed to be everywhere outside the hotel window. The many faces of labourers from South east Asia. Several times, two male labourers holding hands and one female couple. This puzzled me in a place like Dubai, as I'd been told they were very strict on conservative values. My sister - who 'ascribed' to these conservative values when it came to other people's sexuality - filmed them and told them it was wrong. Pointing to them holding hands to demonstrate what she was disapproving of as they couldn't understand English. The audacity.

She came back to the hotel later that day, showing off the jewellery he'd bought for her.
I remember her lying there in her bikini and I wanted to be as far away from her as possible. But I knew I couldn't. Only dark humour to lighten the mood would prevent her from inflicting more misery on me with her rages. So I made some stupid jokes, something about her looking like a chicken when she hugged her knees (don't even ask).

The day we left, I was over the moon. We got back home, and i remember calling my younger sister and telling her what an outrageously horrible time it was, and how shocked i was to see the act that my sociopathic sister put on.
We came home to more arguments. My sister was wearing ripped jeans and my mother raged at the sight of this, before my brother chimed in. The arguments became so boisterous, and so the regular panicky, helpless feeling came back again. My brother swore at my sister and she stormed off out of the house. He was angry the rest of that day.
I've been a member here a while, and keep visiting the site with hopes of finding some help, maybe contributing and sharing my experiences, but I'm finding the whole site confusing, huge and overwhelming. I just don't know where to start or where to post.

A few times I have started reading posts in areas which seem relevant to my experiences, but I keep getting triggered because reading about other people being upset about the same things which I've been in denial about for so long, drags me into a frightening and hopeless feeling of reality about just how bad my childhood actually was.

Almost everything I read, I say to myself "yep, that happened to me".... or some similar version of it. But I've been in denial about it all, spent my life running away from my feelings because I was always told I was being silly or selfish or ... I can't even remember half the time because I'm triggered and my memory goes blank. But basically I was shamed out of expressing feelings, even the good ones. Neither of my parents could handle emotion, in themselves or anyone else and they used the easiest and fastest method of shutting down any emotion in me for their own comfort. So I learned that emotion was bad and I was bad and that there was something wrong with me for feeling stuff and for not being able to do life as well as it appeared other people were able to..... and it was all my fault.

I've just started learning how to have love and compassion for myself. I was taught that my needs aren't important and that my value lies in being of use to others, so I'm fighting my urges to ignore my own needs here, trying to figure out how to reach out for help, not wanting to hurt anyone else in the process. I'm not sure how it works, how the wounded are able to help the wounded, as we all need our love and compassion for ourselves.  I don't have much to give to anyone else right now, its taking all my focus and strength, remembering to love myself, to be kind to myself, to heal myself first, before I take care of anyone else.

This site has been recommended multiple times as the place for support for healing from CPTSD and I do want to get better. I'm willing to do the work, as long as I can take baby steps, but I don't know where to start really, or where to post things.

I've been reading Pete Walkers books and have just started with the 'Focusing Method' for connecting with feelings. I've had a few significant spiritual shifts over the years, which have changed my perceptions and views about things. Externally, my life is great now. For the first time in my life I have a safe, stable home, no financial problems and I'm not being abused by anyone. But inside, I'm a mess, the patterns from my childhood are still playing out through my mind and nervous system, but at least now I can see them and understand where they started.

Is getting triggered, feeling overwhelmed, anxious and hopeless part of the recovery process? I'm not sure what I should be reading here on the site, or if I should stop if I become triggered.

I was just reading about people who had their toys given away and then about someone who's dog was given away. My dog was given away when I was 5 and I was lied to about the reason, made to feel ashamed because I was sad about it. He had been my best friend, then suddenly he was gone and I never saw him again. Most of my toys were given away when I was 9 because we were moving to another country, there was no kindness, compassion or understanding about it. I just had to choose 2 toys to keep and the rest were thrown away I think, don't know what happened to them. I remember being shocked, in disbelief and devastated. The awful thing about it was that my parents kept lots of their stuff and brought it with them, they spent thousands shipping a car, and things which were important to them across the world, but I couldn't bring my toys with me. There was no emotional support for me about that whole move across the world, into a different culture and environment. I was basically left to my own devices, ignored and had to figure it out alone. I never did regain a feeling of anywhere being home after that, never knew where I belonged.

Having my stuff disposed of by them happened to me a second time when I was an adult, when I was sick and unable to deal with it myself. My teenage daughter and I had lost our home after a divorce and were storing some of our possessions in an unused part of my parents house while we were staying with a friend,  until I found somewhere else for us to live. But before I had a chance to deal with our things, I became very sick.  While I was recovering from my illness my father decided he wanted his room back, said he wanted the space to have parties in, which was ridiculous, but I was so sick at the time I wasn't able to deal with it and had to watch helplessly as he slowly went through all my stuff and sold it. My daughter was able to rescue what she wanted to keep, but I was unable to.  I could tell he was having a great time with it all, he loves selling stuff, anything to make money.

The truth is, he didn't want to use that space in his house, its still empty with nothing going on, but dirt and dust, but its his house and if he didn't want my things taking up his space, what could I do. I think the real reason he wanted to get rid of my things is because he was bored and wanted a project and I was sick and vulnerable at the time so he took advantage of the situation. He did give me the money he got for selling my things though, so that's something, but I didn't need money, I needed my health back and some consideration and compassion.

Anyway, I've written a bit about myself and my past, there's so much more though, I've been through a lot of trauma in my life, with no emotional support and no compassion, from anyone, including myself.  I had the idea that anything bad which happened to me was my own fault, that I deserved it, because that's what I was told as a child. I remember going to my parents whenever I was upset, because someone had hurt me or I'd had an accident or something. My father especially would always find a way to blame me for what had happened, saying that I had done something wrong or that I had misunderstood the other person or responded to them inappropriately. I don't ever remember being comforted by either of them when I was upset. When I was about 12 I was sexually abused by a man in a local store, I ran home, very confused and upset and told my mother, she asked me what I wanted her to do about it, told me not to tell my father because he would be angry. I remember that it left me feeling even more confused and ashamed, like as if I had done something wrong. Nothing happened about the man who had abused me, I guess he went on to do the same to other kids.

 I remember being hit a few times, but most of the harm was caused by the constant emotional abuse and neglect which began at birth I assume. My parents should never had brought children into the world, neither of them were cut out for being parents, having been abused in their own childhoods and both of them believing they were fine, while unconsciously passing all their dysfunction onto me and my sister.

My life has been about struggling and surviving, while being unaware of why I found life so difficult compared with other people. I put other peoples needs, desires and comfort before my own, believing I was worthless and didn't deserve love or happiness or anything good for myself. When my daughter came along, I lived for her, wanting her to have a better life than I did. Unfortunately, I had unconsciously chosen a man very similar to my own father, to marry, to be the father of my child. It wasn't until my daughter was about 6 that I started learning about narcissism and the real reason behind all the dysfunction in my family. I was able to protect her from a lot of the harm I had received, during my childhood, but I wasn't able to fix myself. 

It took about 7 years, to recover from my illness, half of that time I was bed-bound most of the day, unable to do much of anything but survive. I had agoraphobia from being sensitized to light, sound and movement, so I became very isolated, only able to go out once a week to buy a few groceries.  My daughter grew up, graduated from college, started work, bought her own house and moved out. She's doing fine, has a nice relationship and a great career, she seems normal and happy. I'm grateful I was able to protect her from the legacy of my abusive past, but now I'm left here with just myself, my inner child and my dog, ready to deal with the truth, my feelings and heal, so I can hopefully one day have a healthy relationship with myself and someone else and maybe even enjoy what remains of my life.

Hi justhatched!
I can totally understand why you feel so overwhelmed right now. I have been feeling too empty and triggered to really respond to other people's boards or be able to offer support recently but reading your post, I felt a pull to reply.

Please know it is so okay to feel the way you do right now. And there's no need to rush to figure it all out, or figure anything out for that matter, in an urgent matter. I get the impression for you, you need time to process things that were never allowed to be processed because of your parents' limited emotional capacity which had them act in abusive ways that aimed to repress you. This bothers me a lot - no-one has the right to tell anyone else what feelings may or may not be valid. Feelings are valid by virtue of their own existence.
Please go gently on yourself and give your inner child as much time as she needs. Its about YOU now, you deserved to have had it about you all along but now, it can be a reality.
Please know all the scary feelings - panic, anxiety, overwhelmed - are all perfectly normal given the trajectory of your life. Don't be alarmed by them. Its just your body signalling to you in a way to protect you but this signalling is now a malfunction as you are no longer in the set of conditions that necessitated that particular signalling set-up if that makes sense...

Introductory Post / Re: Hi everyone
« Last post by holidayay on Today at 01:06:09 PM »
I'm having a really tough time of it since yesterday and really feel like I need an outlet for all the mess in my head right now. I feel full-on like my child self; helpless, in despair, panicky, depressed and filled with dread.

I get very easily triggered when someone isn't being soft enough in their approach to criticise me. Yesterday, at work, when I did my first assessment of a patient in hospital. My supervisor wasn't happy with it and made assumptions that I hadn't bothered to even talk to him (which I'd spent half an hour doing) and briskly said I'd just used his old notes. I froze up and didn't even defend myself. I started panicking and my heart was pounding - because at home, no-one cared what your defence was if they decided to attack you. She then continued to say I needed to ask him certain questions which got me irate enough to argue that I HAD and she demanded to know where I'd written it, so I showed it to her. She didn't apologise or admit she was wrong. This kind of attitude REALLY riles me up and triggers me no end. Since then, I got home yesterday and been lying around, miserable, with constant flashbacks and when I DO sleep, my dreams are about the flashbacks and narcissistic people.

Other triggers are when I have to admit to someone that I need some help/made a mistake and they get impatient with me. Yesterday was horribly triggering for me. I lost my bleep at work and was told to tell the same supervisor. It was written all over her face how irritated she found that. Then she asked: 'how did you lose it?' and i found that so nerve-wracking....the point is, its lost, if I knew the answer to that question, I probably wouldn't be in this situation without my bleep unless the answer to that question was I'd got caught up in a robbery and they'd decided to steal my bleep or something.

I'm praying for a bit of relief today, the flashbacks feel thick and heavy in my mind.  :fallingbricks:
Art / How I am feeling on the inside...
« Last post by Ecowarrior888 on Today at 12:15:50 PM »

Not finished yet. There is more to this piece but for how it looks like now... It actually emphasizes how I feel right now.

No glasses...I feel like I can't see clearly and everything is fuzzy.
Disheveled...Tired and beat up from all the abuse, the bullying, the harassment...
The books...To distract myself, to feel better, to document.....

Trying to figure out how to cope at work right now. So triggering :(
Recovery Journals / Re: Anjulies recovery journal
« Last post by Anjulie on Today at 10:19:57 AM »
notalone, yeah thats sounds totally ok and good and healthy as you say that!  I hope, and I do think, that with me it will be the same, periods when I need to write and periods when I can and like to read and respond to others.

Yesterday I was at my T's and we talked about all of this.
 I think what I didn't learn in my childhood is that there is something natural about giving and taking. If you grow up in a healthy environment, then you take that in all the time.  At least, that's how I imagine it.
Somehow, at some point, I don't know exactly, I've learned that you have to give all the time. You have to give without feeling you want to.  Don't listen to yourself, just do it. There was a lot of religious abuse about this. But my parents are that way, too. They are not able to love really, but they are very generous and very reliable in terms of material and practical things.

Having learned this  was useful, because I was able to build really lasting relationships with this attitude.  I have learned to love, too, in the end  :) And I became better in choosing people as friends, who in turn  give me support. Well, as I said, with this one friend it didn't "work " that way.

My T told me yesterday, that, in a friendship, I should only give when I truly  want nothing in exchange. And only what I can give without exerting  myself. And if that person goes away because of that, and that I am always afraid of, that's just the way it is.

So I have learned, that there is some kind of calculation behind all of this. I often give to make sure the other will give the same to me and will not walk away.  :blink:

I think at the core, there's a lot of fear involved, and force. Maybe a way for me is to listen more to my heart, as woodsgnome wrote. Be more of a breathing, living being.
That would be nice...

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