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Found 11 results

  1. So...this is my first post. It won’t be long...I have come back to this forum because of something that triggered me a few days ago...just watching a tv show. I was desperate to not act out on urges to self injure because of it. My brain likes to bring up those thoughts as a soothing thing I think, after so long not self harming, my brain tries to soothe me in the only way it knows how. I love being back here, despite the really hard stuff...I have such a hard time making friends, and this stupid quarantine, due to personal health issues, has had me stuck inside the house with my parents (God love em) for 3 months. There are good things about these changes but also negative things. It isn’t that great for my depression, but with my mom home...at least til she has to go back to work Monday...we’ve been pretty productive (or at least productive for us) around the house.Being back on the site has its downfalls....I am remembering things I had repressed. Making me dissociate at times. Dissociation doesn’t really affect the SH urges as much as it does mess with my head and make it hard to focus and make my depression worse. Have been sleeping for 12 hrs the past few days. Last night only 5. I think all the sleep is depression related, was thinking it may just being tired from my body getting ready for my period or something....but now I’m wondering if it’s just the memories messing with me, making me exhausted, or more depressed. I know I am anxious, which makes eating less easier...and my whole family dieting or trying to change eating habits the past 3 months hasn’t helped. I am secretly glad the anxiety has me losing weight. It’s just falling off of my dad and he keeps gloating about it. I’m happy for him, but inside I am jealous and want to “beat” him at it... But that’s also part of the reason the site exists, right? ...to face the fear. To talk about it. Get it out in a healthy way. Not feel so alone....I need all of those things right now. Gotta Start Somewhere... L
  2. Hey, everyone. It’s been a while. Well, longer for you than it has been for me. I wrote a blog a few weeks ago and never posted it. I guess I was ashamed of the content in that blog. I thought it was something I wanted to talk about but, I was wrong. Having one of my closest friends tell me how wrong I was…that didn’t help. So, I didn’t post it, but I DID write it. For me, I had just released all my pent-up energy and I haven’t had much else to write about. Not until now, anyway. Things have been…alright, I guess. They’ve been better, but they’ve also been worse. I think in the midst of the global pandemic, all of my anxiety is just doubled. My stress levels are through the roof! That can’t all be blamed on COVID-19 though. There are plenty of other factors at play here. Two weeks ago, on Thursday, I went to my morning T session like normal. It was an 8am appointment so I woke up bright and early and headed straight there. It was a fine session. Not life-altering or anything, but I left feeling better than I went in. Isn’t that the point, anyway? After that, I had to go sign papers to refinance my car. It took FIVE-ever, but it wasn’t a huge deal. I didn’t have to be at work until later, so I had the time to kill. I decided after that, I would continue with my adult responsibilities and I would go to get my oil changed. Exciting, I know. I had to run home first and grab a punch card from my dad before heading to the shop though. When I got home, that’s when everything changed. My parents dropped a bomb on me. COMPLETELY unexpected. It was like a punch right in the gut. I had my hand on the door handle to leave and my dad tells me he needs to talk to me for a minute. I had time, so I walked back over to where he was. He proceeds to tell me that he lost his job the day before. If you stay up to date with the world, you know that the oil field is really not doing well right now. Gas prices are low, which, is great for some people, but for those of us with family working in the oil industry, it’s a nightmare. My dad was one of the unlucky ones. After about 5 rounds of letting people go, they had to let him go. This was a shocker in and of itself. I was stunned. But, this wasn’t the part that shook me to my core. I hadn’t even thought of what this would mean for me. Not until my mom said “so, we’re losing our insurance.” I’m sorry…what? LOSING insurance? My heart sank. No more therapy? How was I supposed to NOT go to therapy? Something I had come to rely on so much. I was supposed to just…not go? My parents aren’t fans of me going to therapy. In fact, until this happened, my father and I had never even spoken about it. I knew that he knew about it, but it wasn’t talked about. Not between us. My mother refers to it as my “appointment” because it would just KILL her to admit that I’m in therapy. They don’t know about my trauma so they couldn’t understand what I was really doing there. But, this was fine with me. As long as I could bill this to our insurance, I was fine with it being an unspoken rule of the house. My mom proceeded to say that she didn’t know what I was going to do about my ‘thing’, but it was up to me. They said we would have insurance for 30 more days before it ran out. They also said that even though my dad had a new job lined out, insurance through that job was not an option. I tried to play it cool in front of them, but my stomach was in knots, there was a lump in my throat, and I could feel the threat of tears stinging my eyes. What was I going to do? I left the house shortly after that so I could 1.) panic in private, 2.) call my friend, and 3.) get my freaking oil changed. I pulled into the parking lot next door to the oil change place and called my friend. I told her what happened and that I was terrified I wouldn’t get to see my T again. I finally let the tears fall. Panic and worry were consuming me, I couldn’t think straight, and I felt so defeated. Having my friend there helped. She talked me down and helped me come up with a plan. BEFORE giving up and wallowing in self-pity, I needed to look into the insurance my job offers. I mean, that’s logical – thanks, friend. After that, I could decide on the next step. Either sign up for insurance, or look into other options, and talk to my T. So, that’s what I did. I got the dang oil changed, went home, changed clothes, and headed to work. I was anxious to get there so I could just look at my options. As much as I knew I had ’30 days’ to get this under control, I was still nervous. I just needed to see what I could do. I get to work and tell my mangers I need to talk to them. We talked about insurance and, of course, my job offers the most obscure insurance that no one has ever even heard of. I knew my T wouldn’t take it. I hadn’t asked her yet, but I knew she wouldn’t. We talked about options, but everything was so expensive. I didn’t know how I would afford it or make it work. Ah, there they were again, those pesky tears rolling down my cheeks and threatening my pride. I just couldn’t help it. I felt like I was running out of options. After talking a little more, I came to a decision – something I thought would work. IF I could get my T to take my insurance. I leave the office and send a text to my T. I asked if she could please call me. I told her it was really important and that I wouldn’t ask if it wasn’t. She said she would call me before her 4:00 appointment came in. Alright. Begin the waiting game. Finally, the phone rings. It’s J – my T. I rush into an office and close the door to take the phone call. The first thing I asked was how much a session would cost without insurance. The answer? ONE HUNDRED DOLLARS. I know it could be worse, but I also knew there was no WAY I could afford to pay $100 a week to see her. It wasn’t an option. She asked if I was worried about losing insurance and I told her what I had just found out a few hours prior to the phone call. And…there it was. Again. I don’t know how many other ways I can word this, so I’ll just say it – I started crying. She mentioned another option to look into, and I told her that I still had insurance for 30 days. We had time to figure it all out. But I still felt like I was running out of options. Nothing was working out in my favor. We hung up, and I headed to my computer to start looking into the individual insurance options J told me about. I won’t go into detail about numbers and deductibles because honestly, it’s confusing and no one cares. So, I’ll just cut to the chase and let you know that individual insurance was a no-go. I couldn’t afford it. I was better off just paying out of pocket the $100 a week! I was hitting wall after wall after wall. NOTHING was working out. I was exhausted, I was worried, and I wanted this to just…NOT be happening to me. Unfortunately, avoiding it wasn’t going to do me any favors. The problem wasn’t going to just disappear. I was going to have to fight for it if I wanted it. I sent my mom a text just to be sure that I needed to be looking into health insurance for myself and she said yes. I also wanted to confirm that I had 30 days, but she said no. They thought we had 30 days, they pleaded with the insurance company to give us time, but they said no. I was told that our insurance was terminated immediately. Immediately. I was never going to see J again. My heart dropped further, the lump in my throat grew, but I held back the tears. I had to stop crying! I took a break from looking at insurance. I was tired and I was kind of out of ideas at this point. I needed to sit down with my T and talk about options. I needed help. It was during my break that we were hitting the 5:00 mark and everyone started going home from work. I work until 6, so it was down to my friend, Cassie and me. We worked together until 6 every night and she’s one of my best friends. After we were alone, she asked if I was okay. I told her no – I wasn’t okay. Not at all. I told her what was going on. Hot tears pouring down my face, sniffling between sobs, and trying to catch my breath. I had been crying all day, but this broke me. Talking to her and knowing I was alone with her and no one else would see me…I was done. I couldn’t hold it in anymore. She was sympathetic, but she didn’t have any ideas either. I sent J a text and told her that the insurance was done. I needed to cancel my appointments because I could no longer afford it. She told me she would see me the following week for free. She wasn’t going to throw me away. I felt a little better knowing I had one more session to wrap things up until I could return to seeing her. I wasn’t happy – not at all. But one more session was better than zero more sessions. I left work feeling tired. My heart was so broken, my mind was tired from racing, and my face was puffy and red from all the crying. Then, The New Guy calls me. He had something else he wanted to talk about because of something I said to him via text the day before, but that didn’t last long. Then I told him I had a horrible day. He asked what was going, so I told him. Every detail. I even told him the boring stuff about deductibles and prices. He listened, but he also didn’t have any options. He apologized to me profusely. Not because he did anything wrong, but because he knew I was hurting and there was nothing anyone could do. I wanted to fall into his arms and just be broken for a while. That wasn’t an option. I did cry on the phone with him and tell him how much this all sucked, and he agreed with me. It DID suck. Before we hung up, he reminded me that I wasn’t a throw away, and he told me he loved me. I held on to those words for days after this because it was what I needed. I wasn’t a throw away. This would work out – it would be okay. I wasn’t a throw away, and I was loved. That was what I needed. I get home and, well, some things had changed. Great. More news. This was better news, though…sorta. Our insurance had NOT been terminated, but we didn’t have 30 days either. We had until the end of March. That included one more Thursday. I could go ahead and let her bill me the next week and if she was still offering a free session, I could use that the week after. This was better. What wasn’t better was their attitude about all of it. They were claiming that once the oil field goes back up, my dad will have his job back and we will have insurance again. I didn’t doubt that. At the same time, though, I didn’t know when that would be. A month? Two months? Six months? No one had an answer to that. My parents encouraged me to go without insurance until he was employed by that company again. We didn’t know when that would be, but they are very confident that this is a temporary set back and things will be back to normal soon. I trust them, I do. But my therapy is really important to me and they don’t understand that. They knew that this was my unspoken worry – that I would have to stop therapy. This time, it was my mom that brought it up. She asked if I could just take a few months off – it wasn’t a big deal. Her exact words were “haven’t you learned enough…coping mechanisms by now that you’ll be fine for a few months?” She barely had the words out of her mouth when my dad chimed in, agreeing with her and saying I needed to suck it up. It was ironic because going into the house, I was determined to tell them how important therapy was to me and that I knew they didn’t understand it, but to me, it was a big deal. Needless to say, those words never left my lips. I digressed quickly. It was clear to me that they would not understand it and I didn’t want to argue. This was something I was just going to have to deal with in private, on my own. With the support of my friends, of course. I do have a few good people in my corner that have my back. The New Guy, Cassie, and the friend I mentioned in the beginning of this post. This is kind of a side note, but I talk about the other friend in my posts frequently and I haven’t given her a name yet…I’m going to have to work on that. She deserves a name here. I’ll think about it and get back to you. By the time I left their bedroom and headed to my own, I was exhausted. Completely drained both mentally and emotionally. I changed clothes into something a little more comfortable, watched some mindless TV while talking to my friend, and laid in bed. When I finally stopped and just let myself rest, silent tears rolled down my face onto my pillow. This was the end and it was all out of my control. I had exhausted all of my options and there just wasn’t anything that anyone could do. I was defeated and heartbroken and just…sad. I eventually fell asleep and put that day behind me. The next day, I had a new determination. I was going to figure something out. I made it to work and immediately started looking over the insurance paperwork again. I knew this wasn’t going to work, but I had to do something. After all, I needed insurance for more than just therapy. I had to decide if I wanted to take the risk of not having insurance to go to the doctor, or if I wanted to pay for insurance until the end of the year when we did open enrollment for our 2021 benefits. That’s when I saw it. The Employee Assistance Program (EAP). This was where I found J to begin with. That’s kind of a story in and of itself and I’ve already been pretty long winded, so I’ll try to keep it short (if you want the full-detailed story, let me know in the comments!). The EAP offers 6 free counseling session to employees here. When I started looking for in-person counseling and EMDR, I thought I would do 6 sessions with J and that would complete the EMDR process and I would go back to just online therapy with the other person I was seeing. Obviously, that didn’t happen. I continued to see her after the 6 sessions and now it’s been over a year and I’m still seeing her. When I saw the tab for the EAP, it got me wondering if the sessions from there would renew, or if it was 6 sessions per employee for the life of their career here. I looked at all of the FAQs on OUR website as well as the EAP site. I didn’t find an answer, so I decided to call. The lady I spoke to was very kind and when I asked if they would renew, she wanted to look at my profile. I gave her permission and she looked it up. She asked who I was seeing because she wanted to make sure she was still on their list. I told her, and sure enough, she was still there. She said since it had been over a year, they could renew the 6 sessions. SIX MORE SESSIONS! This was great news. I know it doesn’t fix everything, but that meant a total of seven weeks before I had to worry. During this seven-week period, I decided that I would start saving as much money as I could. I would stash money in my currently empty savings account so that when the seven weeks ended, I could afford to pay out of pocket for at least a few more sessions. Hopefully. I know that is a temporary fix – a band-aid on a bullet hole – but it gives me time. Maybe this will give me enough time for my dad to get re-employed and get us insurance again. Or, maybe not. It’s not a long-term plan, but it’s what I have for now. That’s enough for me to hold onto right now. I have one of those seven weeks down, and six more to go. I won’t lie, it seems to be going by fast, and that worries me a bit. I’m just trying not to focus on that part, not now, anyway. J brought up a good point, though. When I renewed the sessions, they asked what I was seeing her for, and I said trauma. J said that when my six sessions were up, I may be able to tell them I’m having a separate issue (depression, stress, anxiety, etc.) and it may let me renew the sessions again. I don’t know if this will work, but I’m going to try it. I’m taking what I can! Until then, I’m alright for now. I’m just focusing on short term – it helps. That was the first of many things I have adding to my stress right now. The insurance has caused a lot of problems. The past several weeks, my T has been urging me to get back on my medication. I didn’t listen at first – I told her I felt fine. She kept telling me that I was GOING to feel fine for a while, but that the medication would wear off and eventually, I wouldn’t be fine anymore. I thought she was wrong. I had been off my medication for a month with no issues so I really didn’t think it would get bad. As you probably guessed, I was wrong. If I wasn’t wrong, I wouldn’t be sitting here typing about it. Things started getting bad around the same time I found out about my dad. While I think the stuff with my dad contributed to how lousy I was feeling, I really don’t think that was the only cause of my slip back down. It couldn’t have been. That all happened on a Thursday and I had it (mostly) sorted out by Friday, but I was still…not good. I decided that J was right and I needed back on my medication. The only problem was, I had been off my meds for over a month. I didn’t know if I could just go back to the same dose because I was on such a high dose. When I first started the medication, I had to work up to that dosage. So, getting back on it, I didn’t know if I would have to start at a lower dose again. I REALLY didn’t want to call my pdoc and ask. I didn’t want to hear the lecture about not taking them or deal with them being rude because I messed up again. J had told me to call that day, but with everything going on with my dad, I forgot. I really was going to suck it up and do it, but I didn’t think about it. The next day, I remembered. It was about 4:45pm and I thought they closed at 5, so I was just in time. I called, but I got the message saying that they closed at 4:00pm. Great. That meant I would have to wait until Monday. Things got progressively worse over the weekend. I started cutting again. Which, wasn’t super new, but I had been trying to stop. I just didn’t see many other options. I was overwhelmed and I felt alone and…well…I don’t know. I do it a lot when I feel alone. I felt hopeless. Monday came and I remembered to call. I asked them first, how much an office visit would be without insurance. I don’t know what I really expected, but I wasn’t pleased with the answer. She told me it would be $140. There it was – another wall. How am I supposed to afford that? A hundred and forty bucks to sit in a chair while someone writes me a prescription? No way. I can’t do that. But, my next appointment isn’t until May so I’m not too worried about it right this second. I’ll worry about it later. I can only focus on one thing at a time and that’s not on the top of my priority list. Then, I confessed what I had done. I told her how long I had been off my meds and that I wasn’t sure if it was okay to start back at such a high dose. I THOUGHT I was prepared for the backlash. Apparently, I wasn’t. She was so rude to me. Her tone, her words…the way she belittled me and made me feel stupid. Honestly, the medication got screwed up when I went on vacation. I just never started it back when I got home. And aside from that, does this not happen a lot? Am I the ONLY person that has felt better and thought they didn’t need medication anymore??? J has told me that the doctors are used to this. It happens a lot, especially in patients with mood disorders, like me. Things get better, you think you don’t need meds, you quit taking them, then things get bad. It happens. I’m not trying to make excuses for myself, but I don’t think she had any excuse to be so rude to me. Anyway, she told me that she would have to call my doctor and find out and they would call me back the next day. I wasn’t upset about having to wait on a phone call, but I WAS upset about how I was treated. I already felt worthless and stupid and she just added to that. Confirmed all of the negative things I felt about myself. I was done. All I could think about was hurting myself. To top it off, I got in a fight with my friend. The one I mentioned up there that I need a name for? Yep, that’s the one. It was so dumb, and I know it was my own fault, but I just felt miserable. I felt like I had no one. I decided then that I was going to finish everything I had to do that day, and then I was going home, and I was going to slit my wrists and kiss the world goodbye. It wasn’t a passing thought. I had this made up in my mind. I wasn’t going to change my mind. There was nothing anyone could say to make me want to live like this anymore. I wanted out. I wanted the thoughts to stop and I wanted the ache in my chest to go away and I wanted to escape this thing we call life. I was done. I was messing everything up anyway, so, why not? No one was going to miss me, things would be better without me, and I would be free. After I had this made up in my mind, I posted on AS. I didn’t want anyone to find out about my death and think it came out of nowhere. I felt I owed some sort of…heads up. Not really an explanation, but a warning. I posted that I was done living, and that was that. It was almost over. I finished work, went to my piano lesson, and went home. I skipped dinner. It was kind of late, I was in my room, I was alone, and it was time. This was the end. I started to cry. Was I really going to end my life? Was this really it for me? At 23 years old, my life was going to be over. Unmarried, no children…but I was done. I decided to check AS before doing it. Curiosity got the best of me. When I looked, it seemed like no one thought I was serious, or it really was just that no one cared. In fact, I got a PM that made me feel even more like I was screwing everything up and making people miserable. I logged off, put my laptop down, and grabbed a blade. Then I got a text. It was the friend I keep mentioning that doesn’t have a name. Let me clarify a couple of things here. She and I talk nearly every day. We hardly ever miss. At least one message to check in every day. It’s just…how it is. I’m usually the one to reach out though. If I don’t message first, we don’t talk. Usually. It’s been that way for… a while. So, when my phone went off and I saw it was her, I set the blade down. I wiped the tears from my face, and I responded back. We kind of talked about this night after it happened, but I don’t think she knows that she may have saved my life that night. I didn’t want her to think my life was her responsibility, so I didn’t tell her that part. We talked for the rest of the night. We put everything out in the open and worked everything out. Just like we always do. I went to sleep that night and I was safe. I was alive. And for the first time that day, tomorrow didn’t seem so bad. I could make it another day. I never heard from my pdoc the next day. Or the day after that. Or the day after that. But I did have therapy on that third day. I told her about Monday night (as recommended by that one nameless friend) and I told her about the pdoc. We agreed at this point that I needed the medication. With everything that happened just a few days prior, I actually WANTED to be on the medication again. I even told J that. Regardless of what I wanted though, they still hadn’t called me back. I felt stuck. I had about 10 minutes left of my session and J said she would call the pdoc with me in case they were rude or unhelpful. So, I called and put it on speaker with J right next to me. I’m sure you guessed this, but I’m going to tell you anyway. They weren’t rude at all. I mean, of course not. J likely thought it was all in my head! They gave me the answers I needed and we moved on. Maybe it all worked out for the best. J asked me if it was close to time for me to refill my prescriptions. I told her that it should be about time, but I never used any of the ones I filled last time. I have an entire month’s worth of medication sitting in a bag in my closet, untouched. She said even so, I should refill them before I lose insurance. She’s very smart. I did that and it was pretty easy. No pain in that process. When I picked them up, I asked the girl at the pharmacy how much this would cost without insurance. If my co-pay was $45, I wanted to know how much it actually costs. She told me that ONE of my three medications, is over $1,700 without insurance. WHAT? That’s just for one of them! Altogether, the three medications will cost over $2,300 a month. I don’t even make that much money! I have a little over 2 month’s worth of meds. After that? I have no clue what I’m going to do. Not any idea. Even as I write this, I have no solution for that. If you have any ideas, feel free to drop them in the comments! I welcome any and all suggestions! With no insurance, I have no way to afford T, pdoc, medication… nothing. I was just starting to get back on track with all of this. Then the universe was like ‘LOL, you thought’ and now I’m a puddle of overwhelmed cluelessness and questions that don’t have answers. Maybe that’s what has been causing my recent slip. Maybe… You see, I started self-harming again almost a month ago, but it wasn’t frequent. Maybe once or twice a week. Maybe less than that. Somewhere along the way, it started becoming more frequent. I couldn’t stop. Something about etching red tally marks into my hips became intoxicating again. Once I have the blade in my hand, I can hardly put it down. I don’t know what makes me stop every night. I guess that’s my point. I’m doing it every night. My hips are trashed - nearly unrecognizable as flesh. I’ve been dreaming about red baths and stitches. With the slightest upset, my first thought is cutting. When I feel alone, I tell myself not to worry – I still have my blades. They’re always there. They never leave. I can rely on them. I can trust them. They’re safe. How ironic is that? The very thing I use to tear my flesh apart is the same thing I call ‘safe’. That’s what all of this is, isn’t it? A big, heaping plate of irony. This whole story, everything I’ve poured out on this paper today, the words fleeting from my fingertips…it’s irony. The fact that I was feeling safe with J and then the world came crashing down and I don’t know how much time I have left with her? Ironic. The fact that I wanted to kill myself, but I was saved by a text from someone I was fighting with? Ironic. Let’s not forget that I finally decided to try medication again and it isn’t even in the BALLPARK of being affordable. Ironic. I know, this took a weird turn and became super negative. This is the most I’ve spoken about how much I’ve been cutting though. No one, and I mean NO ONE, knows that I’m doing it every day. It’s like part of a damn routine. I’m still deciding if I want to tell J any of this tomorrow. I’ve kind of enjoyed keeping it a secret. Well…it was a secret. Until I typed it here and started shouting it from the rooftops. Well, friends, this is where I am right now. Before you ask, no, I’m not okay. I’m trying to act fine, I guess with hopes that in time, I WILL be fine. But right now, I’m not fine. I’m a mess. And I’m dealing with it in ways that I shouldn’t. Hopefully, the medication kicks in soon and everything will be better. Maybe in a short amount of time, I will have answers to all of these floating questions, and I’ll have solutions to all of my detested problems. For now, I’m just going to not be okay. I’m going to keep forcing a smile until my cheeks are sore and I can’t any longer. I think at this point, it’s all I really can do. With all my love (I still have some of that), Poppy
  3. Lorettia

    The Training

    And so it begins. Still young, yet innocence begins to fade. One little girl struggling to exist to understand to find her place, her frustration overwhelming. Beth takes her overwhelming emotions, and pours them out over Lorettia. Lorettia is smaller, weaker, unable to fight back, the perfect receptacle for Beth's overwhelming emotions, frustration and anger. At first it's verbal only, shouting, mean words. Quickly it escalates. A smack, a slap, arms wrenched. Lorettia runs, tries to escape. Again and again. 8, 10, 12. Words exchanged. Beth learns to swear, continues to grow stronger. Lorettia is small, fierce in her own way, she tries to use words to hurl back, to stand up. She calls Beth the devil. Beth explodes, cursing, raging. Two girls, still little but with big hurts. By now Lorettia runs at the first sign of anger. How fast can she go? Will she make it to safety this time, bathroom door locked? Or will Beth catch her, smash her head into the wall, wrap her hands around her throat? A cycle is cemented. Two sisters play, have fun. Tension lies beneath the surface. Lorettia never knows when Beth will switch. Good, good, good, explode. Sometimes the tension of the good and waiting is too much. Lorettia pokes at Beth, just to get the explosion over with. 10, 12, 14. Dawn is still there, but still separate. from the world for two. Beth and Lorettia, entwined. They keep each others secrets, closest but oh so dangerous. Lorettia stops eating, struggle with friends at school. Her one friend, her closest bestie, leaves her. Lorettia tries a new group, maybe here she will fit? Boys form a line, "No body likes you, they just pretend, go away." Alone. School hurts, home hurts, church hurts. Always alone. Any attention, good or bad, Lorettia is desperate. Violence escalates. Beth makes a mistake. She doesn't realize Dad is home. Smashes Lorettia into the pantry cupboard. Lorettia hits the ground, dazed. Dad's chair smacks upright. What? Beth freezes. Dad sends her to her room. Lorettia feels a sliver of hope, Daddy knows, maybe now she'll be safe. Nothing changes. Not for better. Beth amps up. More careful now. Lorettia knows it'll never stop. Nothing will change. Only hope is to do everything Beth asks, and run as fast as possible. She learns how to figure out if she has a concussion, and keep herself awake when she does. This is life. Two girls trapped in the cycle. 12, 14, 16. The littlest girl. Lorettia is still small. Middle School. Cigarettes and alcohol. Diet Pepsi and carrots are lunch. Small, but not small enough. New friends. Good and bad. Home is the same. Beth is stronger, more violent. Rapid cycles. We don't know it yet, but ADHD has been joined by bipolar. No one recognizes the signs. Beth is flying high and low, bad choices, overwhelming emotional swings. Lorettia receives it all. One time Lorettia is fast enough, locks the bathroom door. Sits on the counter, panic attack, fear. Beth smashes the door, the crack of wood is deafening. Both are shocked. Beth disappears. Lorettia shakes, what if that door was me? 14, 16, 18. The last year all three are at home. Dawn is in college, even more separate than before. Beth still full of ravaging emotions, no way to regulate. Either through the roof happy or in the pit down. Anger reigns in both. Lorettia enters high school. First real boyfriend. He's bipolar. Any intimacy equals him hitting, hurting himself. Lorettia starts to cut. Depression overwhelms. There seems to be no way out of the unhealthy cycle. Everyone struggles, no where feels safe. Everything is out of control. Eating and cutting provide control for Lorettia, a place where she inflicts the pain, punishes herself for every wrong word said, any perceived imperfection. Dawn goes away for college. Mom and Dad leave for a cruise with Grandma and Grandpa. Beth and Lorettia (17, 15) left at home alone. Panic, fear. In desperation Lorettia goes to the school counselor. Suicidal. Gets admitted to the psych ward. Safe. What a crazy place to be safe. Lorettia is able to relax. Her counselor is unimpressed, doesn't think Lorettia belongs there, she doesn't understand the danger at home, alone with Beth. 16, 18, 20. Dawn is still away at college. Beth has moved out to live with a boyfriend. Just Lorettia and her parents. Relief, but now she is stuck in her habits. Starving, cutting, so addictive, they let her feel something. She dances now, another release, but healthy. Changes friends at school, to a better crowd. Less drinking, no mind games, no mental abuse. Change. Graduation. Lorettia is 17. Still mostly innocent, having kissed and made-out, but not more with boys. She quits drinking. Works for a year. Then off to college (18). Free, she slowly begins to learn to trust, one friend close, a few a little less. Healing starts. Still locks her dorm room door 24/7 trying to feel safe. Even though no one is hurting her now.
  4. Well, it’s Wednesday. I’m tired today. I was up late last night and early this morning and I’m ready to go back to my cozy bed and sleep away the rest of the week. Honestly, I haven’t blogged because there’s been nothing to blog about. Everything in my life is just heavy right now. There’s been little good and lots of bad and I just want to post something worth reading. That likely won’t happen today. I guess this blog will be a catch-up session. Since the last blog I posted was about my suicide attempt, I feel I owe everyone an update. I DID post a different blog after that one, but I decided to take it down. It was just…. too dark. I knew no one really wanted to read that. Even if someone DID want to read it, it wasn’t my best writing and I was ashamed that I even posted it. Although it wasn’t the best blog, it was pretty accurate in describing how I’ve been feeling lately. It’s hard to post about anything other than the big things that are right in front of my face. It’s like my feelings are in front of me jumping up and down, waving their arms, and screaming at me to acknowledge them. I’m not entirely sure how to get them to just shut up and leave me alone. So, I posted about it. It didn’t help and I felt bad about it, so I took it down. I’m sorry to anyone that read it. Today, though, will not be about my feelings. In a way, I suppose it will, but overall, I intend to just let you know what’s been going on. Maybe this will help ME in the process. We’ll see I’ve had 2 sessions since the session where I hugged The New Guy. The latter of those session involved The Wife, but the first one did not. This did upset me a little. I had told her a few days prior to the session about the suicide attempt and we talked about it. I also asked her if she would be at that session and she told me yes. So you can imagine my disappointment when I got there and found out she wouldn’t be joining us. That session was…hard. The New Guy started a new program with me that’s supposed to keep me from going to an inpatient facility. We started paperwork on that. I had to use a lot of scales and rate my feelings. On a scale of 1-10, how likely was I to kill myself or, on a scale from 1-5 how much did I hate myself. Then I had to write down my reasons for living and my reasons for dying. I had to tell him what I would do if I was trying to kill myself. Where I would go, what method I would use, what time I would do it. That was hard. This session took about an hour and a half to complete. It wasn’t the easiest session I’ve ever been in, but I was hoping it was productive. I started thinking about things after leaving and realized that I don’t think I was totally honest in some of the numbers I put down. I was terrified that if he knew how bad it was, he would still make me go inpatient. He said he wouldn’t, but…. I was still afraid. I didn’t trust him. He asked if I had a plan to kill myself. My first response was “I’m supposed to say no to that.” I don’t know why I said it – it just kind of came out. My other T has always told me that she wouldn’t make me go inpatient and she wouldn’t call the police as long as I didn’t have a plan. So, to me, plan = inpatient. I was trying to avoid that. After I blurted that sentence, I told him that I didn’t have a plan. He didn’t believe me. He kept saying I needed to be honest. I told him I didn’t have one. Then he seemed to get a little angry – he really didn’t believe me. After that is when he asked me to describe what it would look like if I DID have a plan. I’m not positive, but I’m guessing he put that I did and had me describe everything to him. I don’t know that for sure though. I told him the next day that I didn’t feel I was honest enough with my numbers and he said it was fine. I asked if I could change them and he said no. He said we would work with what we had and if I wasn’t going to commit to it, he would find me a hospital to go to. So, I said okay and left it at that. During the session, the paperwork had me create a stabilization plan. This plan was supposed to help keep me from cutting and also help me combat the suicidal thoughts/tendencies. It has worked for the most part. It’s just when I get super overwhelmed or when I don’t deal with the thoughts immediately, they add up and I end up hurting myself or getting close to another attempt. Which is what happened last night. I’ll get to that later. The next session I had with him was this past Saturday. I asked The Wife if she would be there and again, she said yes. And she actually was there this time. Things felt off from the very beginning. It may have partially been because I REALLY wasn’t wanting to go. I felt like The New Guy was upset with me about a conversation we had earlier in the week, and I felt like The Wife really just doesn’t like that she has to be there. I thought it would be much easier to not go. But, I went. The New Guy showed up almost 10 minutes late which made me feel MORE like a burden. Like he had other things he needed or wanted to be doing and I was just taking up too much of his time. I eventually went in and the room we usually have sessions in was filled with all kinds of boxes and things and wasn’t usable. So, we relocated to a different room. The new room we went to was one we had used for a session before, so I was okay with that. It felt comfortable enough. But for some reason, there was a smell. It wasn’t abhorrent, but it wasn’t pleasant. I kind of smelled like stale air and mildew, but it wasn’t too strong. It was bearable. Well, it was bearable for ME. The New Guy seemed okay with it too but The Wife… not so much. She wasn’t a fan. We decided to relocate again. At this point, we were running out of rooms that had the amount of privacy we needed. We ended up going upstairs to a cold room with dim lighting. There was no table, so we grabbed some chairs and sat in an awkward circle. My appointment was supposed to be at 3:00pm but the by the time The New Guy got there and we found somewhere to go, it was about 3:20pm. I only had 40 minutes and I knew he had someone scheduled at 4:00pm. Now I was feeling rushed because of how much time was wasted, I felt bad that The Wife was so uncomfortable with the other room because of the smell, I was uncomfortable because I thought The New Guy was upset with me or just flustered in general, I felt weird in the new environment and I was ready to go. I was set up for a bad session. I wrote a blog one time called Misconceptions of a Wandering Mind and in that blog, I talked about overthinking. I am an AVID overthinker. I read way too much into things, I try to find hidden meanings behind things that are said to me, I overthink assignments because the perfectionistic part of me doesn’t want to do anything wrong, and I always worry about what other people are thinking about me. You can imagine how this plays into my sessions and makes me more nervous. The New Guy has a way of asking questions that I don’t always know how to answer. The way he phrases things… I just never know what to say or how to answer him. I often times tell him that ‘I don’t know what kind of answer he’s looking for,’ and he will tell me that he’s not looking for anything specific, he just wants me to answer honestly. It’s just that I don’t always understand the questions. With my fear of being wrong, these questions often render me completely speechless and cause me to freeze. It makes for a lot of awkward time during sessions. So, we jumped right into the next part of the program we are doing. Session number 2. He starts asking about my attachments to other people. He asks me to describe what my relationship with my family looks like. I didn’t really know what he meant, and he asked me to start listing things I liked about my family and things I disliked. He had me grab a pen and paper and write this all down. I went on to write things about friendships, and other relationships in my life. This sounds like such a simple task when I write about it here, but my overthinking brain was on overdrive and I was struggling with this. The New Guy eventually says “this was meant to be easy. This isn’t a hard thing to do,” and I said I understood, I just didn’t know what to write. I could tell he was frustrated with me. I started shutting down. I was just trying to wait out the time until 4:00 so I could get out of there. The New Guy says we’ve hit a barrier and he doesn’t know what’s going on or where the resistance was coming from. I finally told him that I thought he was upset or mad at me and I didn’t know how to do the assignment and I was having hard time doing it right. He says he’s not upset, but his tone said otherwise. He said there was no evidence to show that he was mad and he didn’t know why I thought that because he clearly wasn’t. He just didn’t understand what was going on. The Wife chimes in and said there had to be evidence or I wouldn’t feel the way I was feeling. She asked if it was a tone or the way someone was sitting. I didn’t answer. I just looked down while I was crying. I didn’t know what to do. I was thankful she took my side though. The New Guy lets out a sigh, adjusts his sitting position, and says a bunch of things that I don’t hear. We start wrapping up and he asks me another question. I honestly don’t remember what the question even was, I just remember saying “I don’t know. I don’t know, I don’t know. I just don’t know.” The Wife kind of laughed but I wasn’t laughing. I said “I know you’re going to be mad because I’m just saying I don’t know, but I don’t know how to answer that question. I don’t know what you want me to say. I just don’t know what you’re looking for.” I had hit my breaking point. My words were more forceful that I intended, but I was done. I couldn’t keep feeling that way. He went on to say a lot of things but I was so dissociated that I have no idea what he said. He finally said, “are you hearing me?” and I responded with a slight nod even though I really didn’t hear anything at all. He gave me homework and I agreed to do it. I was saying whatever I could say just to get out of there. I left the building, got in my car, and I broke. I was sobbing uncontrollably. I felt like such a disappointment and I felt so defeated. I never wanted to see either of them ever again. I stayed in the parking lot crying for a solid half hour. When I was finally able to catch my breath, I tried to calm myself down so I could move on. I had a couple of errands to run so I put my headphones in, blasted some music, and got my errands done. The rest of the day was hard. I cried a lot. I was inconsolable. I got home and laid down. I was so low. My heart was broken and I felt like I was letting everyone down. I drew a bath, grabbed a blade, and headed to the bathroom. I closed the doors and sat in the tub contemplating the very existence of my being. What was the point in trying anymore? Things just kept getting worse. Obviously, I didn’t die that night or I wouldn’t be here typing this out. I wanted to though. I wanted to say goodbye and wish this life away because I didn’t see the point and living with all of this pain any longer. I got out of the bath, toweled off, threw on a t-shirt and got in bed. I was drained. I took my meds and went to sleep. The days following have been fuzzy. It doesn’t seem like it’s only Wednesday. It feels like that was weeks ago and I’m just missing the time in between. Luckily, tomorrow is Thursday and I can see my other T and release all of this. Last night was another hard one. I really don’t want to get into the details of what happened last night because I am embarrassed and ashamed. I feel disgusting. I was so upset last night after it happened. I let it happen because I didn’t care about myself – I just wanted to feel SOMETHING. I was so numb. I felt worse afterwards. I felt like I had no one I could talk to and nothing would make me feel better so I did the only thing I knew how to do – the only thing I thought would make me feel better and make me feel less numb. I grabbed a blade and headed to the bathroom. I didn’t draw a bath this time. I simply lifted my shirt and the side of my underwear and started sliding that sharp, silver blade across my right hip – my favorite cutting spot. I suppose it was because I was cutting over old cuts, but the bleeding was the worst it’s ever been. Those that are cutters know that when you cut, the blood makes dots in a line across where you’ve made the incision. For me, it pools, but never too much no matter how deep I go. This time was different. It was bleeding profusely. It beaded in a line like normal, but it just started dripping down my leg so quickly. I could see the blood pouring out and it was trailing down my leg onto my foot. It was scary. I’ve never bled so bad before. The cuts didn’t even seem that deep, I barely felt them. I’m not sure if I was just THAT numb, or if it was because I was cutting over old cuts that made it bleed so much. I cleaned up the cuts and the rest of my leg. My paper towels were soaked with blood. I put a band aid on and disposed of the saturated towels. I put my blade back up in the safe place and went to bed. I was so alone, so tired, and just so broken. Everything in my life feels so dark right now. I can’t see the way out of this hole that I’m in. I keep saying I’ll try harder, but I don’t know HOW. I’m doing everything I know to do. I’m trying my best. I’m trying to put in the work but I’m just not getting better. It’s exhausting feeling this way. Being constantly trapped in your own mind with negative thoughts that won’t stop. I know this blog hasn’t been fun, but I owed you an update. This is why I’ve been so scarce lately and why no one has heard much from me. I’m just so far into my own stuff right now that I haven’t been able to offer much for support. I haven’t even really been able to reach out for support for myself. I hope you are all doing well. I hope that there’s light and sunshine in each of your lives and you’re making it through on this journey called life. I know I’ll be okay soon – I’m just going through a rough patch. I’ll be okay though. Wishing you all the light and sending as many hugs as you’d like. My best, Poppy
  5. This post contains very graphic references to sexual abuse. I ask that you would not read ahead if you are not in the mind to do so. Please proceed with caution. I know what you’re thinking. ‘Poppy, this isn’t a Friday! Speaking of Friday, where the heck were you this week?’ My apologies to everyone that keeps up with my blog entries weekly or those of you that were looking forward to a post from me. I was taking a small break from AS after some events that transpired and caused me quite a bit of emotional and mental pain. I don’t feel that I really have the liberty to go into much detail, but I was very hurt, and I needed some space to heal. I am back now and hoping to be as active as I was before my mini vacation. I’ve missed you all! Now, there isn’t much to update on as far as my dieting endeavor. I have lost more weight, though, so I am headed in the right direction! My glutes are also very sore right now and I’m tempted to stand up while I type, but… my laziness outweighs the pain so, seated I shall stay! Aside from that, I have no more lighthearted news to fill you in on. This weekend has been a lot for me to process and I’m hoping that by typing this blog, I can get some big chunks of this stuff processed and I can feel better. There have been some new realizations coming to light recently, and it’s been a lot for me to take in. I started seeing a second therapist this weekend. The reasoning for two is that my main therapist specializes in EMDR and my new therapist is really experienced with DBT – both are therapies I need right now. So, I am seeing the male therapist as a supplemental therapy along with my main therapy. I know – I’m all kinds of messed up. I was very nervous about meeting with The New Guy. I already knew him and his wife before I started seeing him for therapy, and I was already pretty close to his wife, but still – I was so nervous. Also, seeing a male kind of freaked me out. I have personal issues with most men, especially men that are in some sort of authoritative position, so I was very apprehensive to tell him about everything. I was so nervous, in fact, that when we first spoke about me doing counseling with him, he mentioned that his wife could be present if I wanted her to be and I immediately said yes. I found comfort in knowing that she was sitting right across the table from me. She already knew most of the information I gave, but not all of it. The conversation took an unexpected turn and I told him things I never thought I would tell anyone. I will get to that stuff in just a minute. I’m going to go ahead and insert a trigger warning here for references to sexual assault and CSA. Please don’t read ahead if you don’t feel like you are in the mind to do so. You can always come back when you feel you are in a better place. My appointment was set for 1:15pm. I arrived at the building and parked my car at 1:14pm. I wasn’t expecting anyone else to be there, but I saw other vehicles and got nervous. I was texting The Wife and telling her I was nervous because of the other vehicles, but she didn’t respond. At 1:20pm, I finally worked up the courage to go inside. I got to the door and it was locked. I called The Wife and she came to let me inside, then proceeded to tell me what office The New Guy was in and that she had to use the bathroom. I mean, of course she did. My only source of comfort was leaving me so she could pee. I walked into the office, which was a conference room with a long table, and The New Guy told me to sit wherever I liked, so I sat across from him. A safe distance and The Wife could sit on the end to next to me. We started on preliminary paperwork and The New Guy says he can’t sit so far away from me and moves to the seat I had reserved, in my mind, for The Wife – my safety blanket. Had she not decided she had to pee, she could’ve already been sitting there. I inch a little further away because, well, a male presence so close to me made me more nervous than I already was. The Wife finally comes in from her potty break and sits across from me. Although I had named her my source of comfort, I was immediately MORE nervous. My legs wouldn’t stop bouncing, my hands would stop shaking, and my breath was shallow and rapid. I finish all the paperwork and The New Guy says to me, “So, what’s up?” I had no words to use to respond. I mean, what do I say? Do I just spit out all of my secrets, or do I say, ‘not much?’ What answer was he looking for? I responded with a “you have to ask something more specific than that,” and he did. He asked why I was there. Truth is, I was there because The Wife said she thought he could help me. I told him that and he asked why she felt that way. I darted back an “I don’t know, ask her,” and, well, he didn’t. Instead, I told him that the first 5 sessions with main T, I barely said 4 words to her, and he said he didn’t want that to happen here. He switched gears a little bit and opened up an actual conversation. I don’t remember exactly what he asked, but I remember it got us on the topic of self-harm. I told him that I am a cutter and have been since I was 10 or 11. He asked what happened to me that made me hurt myself for the first time and why I was doing it. We talked about that for a little bit and then landed on my eating disorder. After that, we moved to alcohol abuse. This is where things took a turn that I didn’t expect. He asked me about the rape. He already knew I was raped, but he knew no details of it – just that it happened. He asked if it was violent or if there were weapons involved. I said no, but that I was very intoxicated and possibly drugged and consciousness was drifting in and out. He asked if the monster that did this to me, also took my virginity – I told him no. I lost my virginity when I was 11 or 12. He seemed taken aback by my response. I guess because I was so young when it happened. He asked if the boy was my age and if the sex was something I had thought about before or if I had been exposed to any pornography or anything else like that prior to my sexual encounter with the boy when I was 12. I told him he was my age, but it wasn’t my first sexual experience. He asked me to describe my other sexual experiences to him. This is the part where it gets pretty graphic and uncomfortable and BELIEVE ME, I was BEYOND uncomfortable when I had to talk about this out loud. I was also really ashamed. This isn’t a part of my past I wanted to relive. I proceeded to tell him about the boy I knew in 4th or 5th grade. The boy that wanted me to sit with him in the back of the daycare van after school and give him handjobs. The boy that would convince me it was okay and knew I couldn’t say no. The boy that only talked to me to get his fix. The New Guy asks how I knew what to do. I say I don’t know. Then he asks if this is my first sexual encounter. I tell him no – but the other one was with a girl. He asked for details. I told him about the girl I knew when I was 7 that was mt best friend at daycare. I tell him that we were watching TV while the younger kids napped, and she leans over and asks me if I’m horny. I tell The New Guy that 7-year-old Poppy didn’t know what that meant, so that girl explained it to me. I told her I didn’t feel that way, but she said she did. We went over to lay down beside the vending machines in the corner. I tell The New Guy that we put coats over ourselves and touched each other. I don’t remember if I told him that this became a regular occurrence, or perhaps he knew from the way I spoke about it, but this became something we did every day at naptime. It was routine. Prior to this, I had told him that I didn’t remember anything from before age 6. I really don’t. My memories there are completely blank. He thinks I may have been sexually abused before then and I just don’t remember. There were more situations like this when I was young that I negated to tell him simply because it didn’t matter. He knew the base of what he needed to know. I didn’t tell The New Guy about my dad’s girlfriend’s daughter when I was 10. I didn’t tell him about how she was much older than me and when I shared a bed with her, she would give me candy to kiss her and let her touch me. I didn’t tell him about how no matter how many times I said I didn’t want to do it, she pleaded with me to say yes. I didn’t tell him about how we got caught, and she didn’t get punished. I didn’t tell The New Guy about the other guys that I obliged with handjobs and lap dances and sex. I kept to myself all the other girls that touched me because I touched them back and I knew that meant it was consensual and it didn’t matter. The New Guy tells me this was all sexual abuse. That I was abused and taken advantage of and that people have been using my body for my entire life and it makes him so angry. He said it infuriates him. I told him that I told my other therapist about this and she told me it was normal. It was normal for kids to explore like this. The New Guy says, “it is not normal for 7 and 8-year-olds to be doing things like this,” and I was confused because I was told that it WAS normal. The New Guy says even now, my body is being used as an object for other people’s enjoyment or pleasure. I’m hurting all over right now. The weight of his words sits so heavily on my shoulders that I can barely hold my body up. I didn’t know that any of this was wrong or that I was abused – I thought it was normal. I feel dirty. I feel disgusting. I feel broken. I feel so, so alone. I’m too afraid to try to uncover the memories before age 6. There must be a reason why my mind has blocked this out. I thought it was because I had a crappy memory but now.. I don’t know. I never thought much of this stuff until The New Guy asked me how I knew how to touch the boy on the daycare van. I can’t remember if he told me what to do, or if it was my idea, or if I just ‘knew.’ I don’t know where I learned it – I only remember doing it. I don’t remember if at 9 years old, that was the first penis I touched. I don’t remember if the boy was old enough to get hard, but I knew he wasn’t old enough to cum. He couldn’t ‘finish,’ so we would stop when we got close to being at the daycare. I had several memories come back to me while I was typing that out. I had to put the writing down for the rest of the day so I could process. I am here now, and I’m going to share the new memories I have. Funny how that happens, right? New memories just come flooding in. Anyway, here’s what I remember now. When I was typing about the boy on the daycare van and how he couldn’t ‘finish,’ I was thinking about how there was no ‘clean up’ to get done before arriving back at the daycare. That made me remember that there WAS clean up to be done, but it wasn’t cum – it was my saliva. At 9 years of age, I was giving a boy blowjobs on the daycare van. That thought didn’t sit well with me. In fact, it made me so uneasy that it brought back another memory almost immediately after. For a while, I couldn’t remember if this was something I wanted to do or if it was something he told me to do. I know I’ve already mentioned that, but now I remember. I remember that every day I would get on the daycare van and hope to God that the boy wasn’t there. If he wasn’t there, I was free. On the days he WAS there, I remember my heart sinking to the bottom of my chest and holding back the tears because I didn’t want to touch him, but I felt like I had no choice. I HAD to do it, or he would be mad at me. I have always been a people-pleaser. My whole life has been about making other people happy. Aside from that, I HATED getting in trouble. I have always been a rule follower because I hated it when my parents were disappointed in me. This is another reason I KNOW that there’s no way I would have voluntarily put my hands on his organ in the back of a daycare van. It’s another reason I could never tell anyone and I lied about it when my parents asked me what was going on. I didn’t want them to be mad at me. I was talking about this with a dear friend of mine last night because I was trying to process everything. It seems the more I try to process, the more parts come back to me. It was hours after I decided to put the blog down, but there was another new memory. I remembered that not only did this boy want me to put my hands and mouth on him, but I remember that he put his hands down the front of my pants and into my panties. I can’t remember if I wanted this or if I asked him to do it. I don’t know if he thought he was being nice because of what I was doing for him. I don’t know if my 9-year-old blowjobs were too stale for him and he needed a little extra play to get himself going. I have no idea if I protested this. Perhaps that will come to me later along with more puzzle pieces that I can fit together to get a full picture. I don’t know if The New Guy was right. I don’t know if this was sexual abuse. I don’t know if I can claim that I am a survivor of CSA or not. Maybe this is something I’m rejecting because it hurts or maybe I still haven’t fully processed it. I DO know that I would not like any comments to reflect that it was NOT sexual abuse. I will gladly accept the support or your opinion on if you think this was, indeed, abuse, but I don’t need the invalidation right now. This is all still very new to me and I’m still processing things. My mind is too fragile to accept any negative feedback as it will impact my thoughts too heavily right now. I feel like I should go ahead and end this post because I could probably type all day. I want to say thank you, from the bottom of my heart, to every person that read this and is sitting here supporting me. Your kindness means the world to me. I’m happy to be back on AS and to be surrounded by such wonderful people. Thank you all for everything you do. Soon, Poppy
  6. Well, folks, I think I’m making progress! In some areas, it seems things are really regressing and I feel like a failure. In other areas, I can feel healing happening and trust blooming and progress being made. I took a HUGE step with The New Guy this weekend. I mean – huge. It may seem insignificant to some of you, but for me this was a really big deal. I was going to keep this private, but I’ve decided that I want to share. I haven’t updated you all since I posted my story and it’s long overdue for me to post. I’m going to start at the beginning of this weekend. No, actually, I’m going to go back to last Thursday. I don’t know if the events of Thursday REALLY influenced the activities of this weekend, but it may be important to include them anyway. As always, I’m going to submit a trigger warning early because this WILL get graphic. If you’re sensitive to self-harm, this may not be a good post to read. Take caution reading ahead. So, Thursday. For me, Thursday is Therapy Day. I see my trauma therapist every Thursday and this week was no different. After posting my story here, I decided to share it with my Thursday T. I shared this before Thanksgiving and had not seen her since she got to read it, so I was already a little on edge going into the session. She didn’t even really bring it up, but later she mentioned some details from the story and I felt okay about it. We decided that it would be a good day to do some EMDR processing. The last time we tried this, it was too much for me to handle and I freaked out so I was a bit nervous. I was able to push through 2 sets, but the last one we had to stop. She said she was proud of me for pushing as much as I did and then she helped me to center and re-focus before leaving. All in all, it was a good session. She even gave me a hug (which she rarely does) at the end of the session because she knew it was a hard thing for me to do. For the remainder of the day, I felt pretty okay emotionally. I had a lot of stuff to do so my brain was constantly busy and focused on something. It was later that night when things settled down that everything hit me. I started having impulses to hurt myself or do something very self-destructive. I don’t know if it was related to the EMDR but that was all I felt that I could tie it to. I messaged one of my friends to talk it out and she told me I should email my T. So, I did. I sent Thursday T an email and told her what I was experiencing and told her that I thought it was related to the EMDR processing and maybe I was just feeling too much after that session. She told me that she wasn’t sure if it was related to the EMDR, but gave me some guidance and told me some things to do to keep myself safe and cope with the thoughts. I felt better by the time I went to sleep that night and Friday I was feeling a lot better. Still a little drained, but better than I was feeling the day before. Friday night, though, things changed. I don’t really know why I made the choice that I made. I’ve thought about it a lot and I don’t know what it was that made me want to do this. I decided to go out drinking with a friend Friday night. I made a promise to myself a little less than a month ago that I was not going to drink anymore. I use alcohol as a way to be self-destructive and put myself in danger. I’m not really supposed to be drinking anyway because of the medication I’m on. I was feeling reckless and decided I didn’t care – I wanted to go out. After making the plans to go, I almost cancelled. I had his sick feeling in my stomach and I knew it would be better to stay home and have a quiet evening to myself. I ignored my gut feeling and I went anyway. The night wasn’t fun. I didn’t have a good time. The whole night, I just kept thinking about how sad I was. My T has told me that I really shouldn’t be drinking because alcohol is a depressant. Mixed with my already lingering feelings of depression and my medication, alcohol is likely to push me over the edge. At some point through the night, I thought about cutting. It was a quick thought. It just popped in my head and I tried to dismiss it, but I couldn’t. It stayed in the back of my mind for the rest of the night. I put on a happy face and acted like I was having fun. I danced, I smiled, I laughed. But once I went to the bathroom and I was alone, I just sat there in sadness thinking about how all I wanted to do was hurt myself. The more I drank, the worse I felt. There was no pulling myself out of the hole I had created for myself. I couldn’t wait to get home and just be done with this. Done with myself. I got home around 2am. Everything from here on was done without even thinking about it. It was like I was a robot doing what I was made to do. It all happened so fast and without a second thought. I made it inside and set my stuff down in my bedroom. I immediately turned around, grabbed the shed keys out of the drawer, and made my way to the backyard. I unlocked the shed, walked inside and found the toolbox that I knew was holding the boxcutter I had placed there less than a month ago. I grabbed the tool and went back inside. I walked into the bathroom and grabbed my roll of paper towels from the cabinet. I tore off 2 towels, ran one under the water and kept one dry. This was how I always prepped. I walked back into the room, took off my pants, pulled down the side of my underwear to reveal my right hip, and sat on the bed. I picked up the boxcutter, opened it, and removed the blade from inside. I knew this was a clean blade because I had put it in there not too long ago. In hindsight, there’s no way that blade was sterile. The inside of the boxcutter was filthy. The blade LOOKED clean, but that likely wasn’t the case. I proceeded to put the cold blade against my hip and slide it across. I was anticipating a rush of relief – to feel the weight and heaviness lifted from my shoulders as it has always done in the past. That didn’t happen. Instead, I started feeling worse. So, I repeated the process. It still wasn’t working. I tried again, and again, and again and at this point tears are flowing, I’ve lost control and I just can’t stop. I was feeling so much worse. There was blood running down my leg, soaking through my damp paper towel. The cold, wet cloth felt soothing over the stinging cuts that were now covering my hip. I continued to push the sharp blade into my skin and pull. At this moment, the thought crossed my mind. The thought of how EASY it would be to move the blade to my wrist and just be completely done. To end it all. The pain, the hurt, the shame. How easily I could forget about the rape and the sexual abuse in my childhood. How easy it would be for me to reach that sense of peace that I’ve been longing for. To end this race that has exhausted me in every way possible. I didn’t do it. I stopped. I set the blade down and I cried. I couldn’t believe what I had just done. There was blood everywhere, on my hip, my hand, my arm. The paper towel was no longer white, it was bright red and I was still bleeding. I cleaned up and tried to get the bleeding to stop because I didn’t have enough bandaids to cover what I had done. I pulled the side of my underwear up above the cuts so they could breathe while I cleaned up the mess I had just made. I returned the blade to the boxcutter and set it on my nightstand. I grabbed my paper towels and walked to the trashcan to toss them. Once I felt I could go to bed, I checked the cuts to make sure they weren’t bleeding too much. There was still some blood so I cleaned it up and then placed the side of my underwear back over the top of the cuts. It hurt. I grabbed some shorts off my bedroom floor and carefully put them on so they wouldn’t move my underwear that was protecting the fresh wounds. I hoped that with two layers of clothing covering them, if they opened in my sleep, the blood wouldn’t get on my sheets. I crawled into bed, laid my head on my pillow, and silently sobbed until I fell asleep. The night was restless. I barely slept at all. I had to work the next morning so I got up, got dressed, and headed out. It felt like there was a cloud of shame over me the entire day. I was a mess. While at work, I had to excuse myself because I couldn’t stop crying. I felt awful about what I had done and I was feeling so unsafe. I just wanted the nightmare to end. I made it home, slept for a couple of hours, and cried some more. It was like, no matter how much I cried, I was never out of tears. I had no energy to do anything. I talked with one of my friends for most of the day and that was helpful – she was the only person that I wanted to talk to that day. Aside from that, I just wanted to sleep and do nothing. I felt so broken. My heart was hurting, my hip was hurting, I couldn’t keep the tears from clouding my vision, and I was truly regretful of everything that happened the night before. I was wishing I would have taken my own advice and moved the blade to my wrist so I could be done feeling like this. There was no relief from the pain I was in – nothing was helping. I felt like I could barely breathe and no matter what I tried, I couldn’t keep my mind off of it. I was drowning. Sunday wasn’t much better. I was still in a lot of physical pain and I just felt like there was this weight on me. Everything felt heavy. The only motivation I had that day was knowing that I would be seeing The New Guy and I would be able to tell him what happened. I knew I would be seeing his wife and while I felt she would be disappointed in my actions, I needed comfort – especially from her. I needed to hear that I was okay and that I was safe and that the moment had passed. I wanted her to reassure me that I was loved and cared for. And above anything, I wanted someone to tell me that they were happy that I didn’t end my life that night. Things didn’t go exactly as planned. The New Guy had just gotten back to town from a trip and I KNEW he was exhausted. I could see it on his face, hear it in his voice, and I know that he only slept for a couple of hours the night before. I offered to let him cancel my session and move it to next week. As much as I did NOT want him to take me up on my offer, I insisted that he take the time to rest if he needed it. Luckily, he declined and I was able to have my session that day. The New Guy’s Wife was absent from the session. Part of me knew this would happen, but I asked about her anyway. The New Guy informed me that she had other things going on and would not be present. I was sad, but I knew I would still be able to talk to The New Guy so I was okay. This in itself is progress though. This is only the second time I’ve had a session alone with The New Guy and I wasn’t afraid. I felt comfortable being in the same room as him without The Wife being present. This was a first. He asked me how things were going like he usually does. Instead of my normal ‘everything is great’ line, I told him things weren’t very good. I wasn’t doing well. After he asked what was going on, I did some beating around the bush but eventually told him what I did. I barely got the words out before the rivers started flowing from my eyes. He talked. A lot. I listened and I cried. I was so overwhelmed, but I finally felt that safety I was longing for. Being there with him – it felt safe. Talking about what happened and knowing that I made it through that and it was over, it made me feel that rush of relief that I needed. I was finally feeling all of the things I was missing, and I couldn’t stop the tears from flowing. It was like a breath of fresh air. At the same time, I was still feeling that brokenness. The need for him to wrap me in his arms and tell me I would be okay was strong. I knew it wouldn’t happen, I just wanted to feel that kindness and the compassion that is shown with a hug. It was nothing inappropriate that I desired, I just wanted to feel whole. During the session, he mentioned hospitalization. Yikes. That’s not something I ever wanted to do. Honestly, I never thought I was to the point of needing it. It seems that things may be worse than what I can really see right now. I spoke about this with a friend of mine last night and she agrees with The New Guy – she thinks it’s a viable option. That scares me. I told her that inpatient is for people with real issues. People that are truly at risk for killing themselves or are very depressed and I’m just not in that place. She told me that I WAS in that place. To me, it seemed like it was just one bad night where I got a little carried away and lost control. But I’m OKAY. I’m fine. Nothing happened. But, it would appear that I’m not as okay as I’d like to believe that I am. I suppose, from the outside, I’m doing a lot worse than I realize. Yeah…that’s terrifying. The bottom line is that I don’t want to go inpatient. That scares me. I just can’t see that I am to that point yet. I’m hoping to get control of this now so that doesn’t happen. I’m also very nervous to tell my Thursday T about what happened. I don’t know what she will say about it. But, I suppose that’s a story for a later date. I know I said in the beginning of this blog that I was making progress. Everything I’ve told you up to this point was the opposite of progress – I realize that. What I’m about to tell you is the part where I feel I’m making progress. At the end of the session, I tell The New Guy that I need to ask him a question. He tells me to go ahead. I preface my question with telling him things he already knows. I told him that I don’t trust men and I don’t like to be alone with men which is why I always have his wife present. I also told him that men make me nervous and I don’t like physical contact. I barely even hug my own father. Men scare me. Then I asked if he would give me a hug. He said yes. It was the most sincere, healing, safe hug I have felt in such a long time. He was so kind to me and he said he was so honored that I trusted him enough to ask for that. He said he knows my feelings towards men, and he was so grateful that I opened up to him like that. There was a time not too long ago that if we were talking and he took a step closer or inched towards me, I would back away. I never wanted to do therapy with him because he was a male. I’ve been so hurt by the men in my life, I didn’t trust that someone could be kind and gentle with me and be so sincere. I am so glad that I asked for that hug and I’m so glad that he was so receptive. It was safe. So, I guess in closing, I want to say that I’m proud of myself for trusting The New Guy the way I did. It has taken a lot of work for me to build this relationship. I’m just happy that he’s been so constant and didn’t leave when I was apprehensive or when I tried to shut him out. This feels...safe. I don’t know where I stand emotionally right now. This weekend was a roller coaster and I have tally marks on my hip as a constant reminder of the darkness that consumed me Friday night. I don’t know WHEN I’ll be over this. It’s still pretty fresh. I know this blog wasn’t very friendly and I apologize for my sad story saga. I will try to post something a little more lighthearted next time! I hope that you’re all doing well. Hugs to everyone! Love, Poppy
  7. Kham

    third

    The last few days I have felt like my brain is attacking me. My body feels distant, it's like I'm floating when I walk. Been indulging in sh, which is not good, but it really brings me back and puts my feet on the ground. It also brings a welcome sense of calm. I should eat more. I know it's a warning sign when I forget to eat or just can't be bothered to make it happen. Especially because when I'm me, I love food 😉 I'm not sure what else to add, but felt I should use something as a sounding board. I don't really feel real right now, and haven't for the past day or so. I don't know what to do to feel better, but I'm not sure it scares me so much as I know I should be scared. Rather, I mostly feel numb and tired. But yesterday I spent plenty of time crying, so I know something is still there. Yesterday, I was pretty scared I was going crazy.
  8. "Happy Birthday to you. Happy Birthday to you. Happy Birthday dear MOTHER, Happy Birthday to you." Ah, it's mother's birth-month again. August, for me, has this kind of... 'haze' around it. It's a full month of my dad saying, "your mom's birthday is coming up," or "your mom just had a birthday," or on the day of, "it's your mom's birthday, she shouldn't have to do this." I GET IT. She's the queen of the universe and the world falls down at her feet. She can do no wrong and deserves everything even when she gives nothing. She's perfect and all that. I get it. But can we talk about how much sense that doesn't make? Because I'm sure I can't be the only one to see how unconventional this is. Haven't you ever heard the phrase, 'you reap what you sow' or even 'what goes around comes around' or how about just plain old KARMA? A lot of people here know that I have issues with my mother. I love her to death, don't get me wrong, I mean, she IS my mom. But her being a mother and me loving her doesn't mean that she does everything right. I sometimes think that my love for her is more of a requirement - if that makes sense. Like, I have to love her because she's my mom? That sounds shallow but it's the truth. You know, emotional abuse is a funny thing. You can't see it, it leaves no physical marks, but it's so damaging. I'll be honest and say that this is the first time I've admitted to calling it 'emotional abuse.' The word 'abuse,' to me, has always meant something violent and severe. I was taught my whole life that I was too sensitive and over dramatic about everything under the sun. So I always thought that the way I was treated was normal and I was overreacting by saying it upset me or just being unhappy about my life. In my adult life, I've come to realize just how dysfunctional my family really was. With the help of my T, I've realized that my home houses a lot more emotional abuse than it does a family. Of course, there was a period of time where my parents had split up, and that is what triggered the alcohol abuse for my mom. As an adult, I can see how much pain she was in, but as a scared 11 year old girl, I had no idea. I didn't understand why she had to bring home those stupid brown paper sacks that meant I wouldn't be getting any sleep because I had to protect my sisters and keep them from being scared. I didn't understand why mom would get so angry and turn the music up so loud. I couldn't possibly understand what she was gaining by hitting us because she had too much to drink. Even as an adult, I don't understand it. My adult mind can't grasp the concept of hurting a child. I do not have my own kids yet, but I do have a niece and I know that no matter how old she gets, I could NEVER lay a hand on her. I could never do that. I love her too much. So how a mother can do that to her own kids? I'll never understand. I know the alcohol played some part in that, but I've been drunk and I still don't see how alcohol makes it okay to hurt a child. I may have been close to being a teen, and my older sister WAS a teen, but that's no excuse for my mother to connect her fist to my sister's face. So, I guess that's more the physical abuse aspect of my childhood. But, it goes hand in hand with the emotional abuse. My mother was too busy drinking to do any of the normal 'mom' stuff. I didn't get hugs or 'I love yous' before bed. I didn't get a 'be safe' when I left for school. My mom was usually sleeping off the previous night's binge when I left for school. But you see, my mother was careful to make sure she looked like an A+ mom. She came to all of my volleyball games, all of my band concerts, and all of my sister's choir concerts. She showed up. So I will give her credit for that. But to me, all I wanted was to feel like she loved me. I just wanted her to hug me or to tell me she loved me. I wanted her to care enough to memorize the clothes on my back when I left for school just in case something happened. For once, I wanted her to act like my feelings mattered and not teach me to push them down until they dissipate. I was 11 years old the fist time I intentionally hurt myself. My mom was angry. I was 13 when she found out I was doing it again. She was mad again. I was 16 the next time she saw the cuts on my thighs. This time was different though. She didn't understand it so I pleaded with her and cried and told her how sad I was. This time, she said I was doing it for attention. I asked if I could try therapy and she told me no. She told me no to getting help with a problem that she didn't understand and told me she couldn't help me with. That, to me, also didn't make any sense. If she couldn't help me, why couldn't I seek professional help? I was trying to get better. To this day, I am laughed at and mocked for having emotions. I am taught not to cry when I feel like everything is falling apart. I have to be the same statue that she is, otherwise I am a disappointment and an embarrassment. So being that her birthday was yesterday, I've had some tough decisions to make. First let me say that I don't care who you are or how old you are, EVERYONE likes to feel important on their birthday. Everyone wants their social media to blow up with birthday wishes and everyone wants to blow out every candle on the cake. My birthday was less than 6 months ago. My mom had told me that when my dad got back in town, they would take me to celebrate. On the day of my birthday, I received a text from my father, my mother said the words "happy birthday" to me, and I got to FaceTime with my niece. That was it. Dad came back to town, but there were no celebrations. No dinner, no gifts, no cake. And that hurt me because they KNOW how much I love my birthday and they told me we would be doing something and we just never did. I'm fine with it now. What I am not fine with is the fact that this woman who has NEVER been what I needed her to be, who never did anything for my birthday, now wants me to hand her the world on a silver platter. She expects gifts and cards and dinners. But what about me? Am I being too petty? She is leaving in two months to go to Hawaii for her birthday/anniversary gift from my dad. So I don't think she needs much more than that. I've had a couple of people tell me that it's my decision what I do and that I should only do what I feel comfortable doing for her. I've had other people roll their eyes at me when I say I'm not doing anything because I'm being too childish. Well, here's the deal. I'm going to do SOMETHING because if I don't, the guilt will eat me alive. Regardless of if I want to or not, I have to do something. It won't be big, nor should it be because again, you reap what you sow. I'm sure my father will do something for her when he gets back in town. I think from me, a nice Facebook post and some flowers will suffice. I always plan some elaborate thing with my sisters for Mother's Day and for her birthday, but I'm not doing it this year, and that will just have to be okay. So I hope she has the best birthday ever and blows out every candle on her birthday cake. I'll be waiting for my turn with the candles next year. Until then, I'm going to feel how I want to feel about her and her birthday. And at her party, I'll cry if I want to. Until next time, Poppy
  9. Since I started my healing I have good days, bad days, and days where I'd rather lock myself away with a blade and go to town on my own legs. Healing started when I told my husband my whole story with nothing left out. First time in my life i let someone in and for him to be angry with my rapist made it so much more for me. The things he's telling me were so milder than my own thoughts of hurting the one who hurt me for years. After I told him it took a few hours for me to realize that I finally did it and when I did it all came pouring back like a movie. My little cracks I made to let him in shattered and I couldn't pick myself off the floor. I broke into a million pieces sobbing uncontrollable and when he found me all he could do was hold me until I stopped. When I finally calmed down the inside of my body was fighting, throwing things, and screaming all while the outside was empty, cold, and silent. Since that night I can't go to sleep with the lights off, the nightmares have slowly started to get better, I still wake up in the middle of sleeping in panic searching for my husband. A few days later I sat down with my dad to ask the questions iv had for years but always to scared to ask. Talking to him helped alot with our relationship because I was told he knew about all of it and like my mother allowed it. He didn't know at all and I'll always remember him saying you never truly know what is going on with the people closest to you and crying. It took me about 15 years after it ended to finally let someone know my pain I live with daily. Thank you for reading.
  10. Kathyps33

    Survivor

    I don't feel like a survivor. I get called that and brave and strong but don't feel it. Instead I feel frustrated because I see myself everyday struggling, today I went to lunch with a friend who invited her daughter (my age) to join us and I felt so awkward. People my age that have not been through child abuse talk about childhood like it was some fairy-tale. I can't relate to this and I realize they can't relate to me either. I feel so fake when people talk about tv shows, music, celebrating holidays, birthdays and I smile and laugh like I know, like I had the same experiences and yet inside it hurts so much I feel like screaming but say nothing just smile and nod in agreement. I hate hiding this secret. I didn't ask for, I didn't get a choice in whether to have it happen or not. Its the same with work, with co-workers. I don't go out into public much anyway I get anxiety just going shopping. Although I work as a mobile x-ray tech I can function to do my job but then come home and hide from the world.
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