April 14, 2013 at 4:16 am #16400
Lately I’ve been having difficulty coping with all the changes that have been happening in my life. Where do I start…
Ive been in university for 7 years and I’ve always been considered the smart one. But I’m graduating in a few weeks and I just feel that I don’t know who I am anymore. What if I can’t get a job? What if my identify is changed? But mostly, what if the smart girl is terrible in real life. I feel like I have so much pressure from my family and friends to be successful especially since my family has paid for my entire schooling. Im afraid I owe it to them to be successful.
I’ve also recently left a job I’ve had since I was a teenager. I loved it. I love going every day and being with my friends. But I had to leave due to political reasons and it was putting too much stress in my life. I hated my boss and other supervisors and I felt like I wasnt getting enough recognition for all the time and hard work that I’ve put in. But I’m really sad Ive also lost another major aspect of who I was in my life. Its just added to all the changes in my life and the fact that I dont know who I am anymore
My family is just completely lost about what it means. They are really successful and my whole life has been about how much money you have and expensive looking your car is. Their idea of support has been a pay check every month… but dont get me wrong, I am thankful for that money. But I wish it came with the ability to talk to someone. I wish I could talk to my mom about everything going on in my life but she just doesnt understand and eventually just makes things worse. I dont live in the same province as my parents so when big things happen in their life they just forget about me. I feel like because I dont live there they just forget my existence and dont care what I think.
My friends don’t understand what I’m going through. I’ve felt soooo lonely and out of my body with all the changes i’ve had. I just want to feel included all the time and I get really upset when big events happen and Im not invited or I can’t go for whatever reason. I’ve been soo emotional lately that Im afraid everyone is going to get annoyed with my complaining and just stop talking to me all together. It just feels like my whole life is falling apart and no one cares how I deal with it.
My emotions are really getting the better of me. Most days I walk around like a zombie just going through my day … sometimes at the end of the day I cant even remember what I did that day. Usually it involves something with school or work but I can never remember the specifics. Or sometimes during the day I get so mad that I just yell at people or I just ignore them completely. But the worst is at night… I dont sleep at all. I spend most of my nights crying and worrying about the fact im not sleeping and what thats going to mean for my finals. I am just so angry at my life but more importantly Im angry about how im reacting to all of this. IS this normanal!? Do other people have problems at night. I feel like when my brain stops thinking for more than 15 mins everything comes rushing in and I lose control….
I have a friend who has been there through it all. He is really easy to talk to and I feel like there is no limits to our friendship. And because he helped me so much I feel like I’m taking advantage of our friendship and eventually hes going to get annoyed about the fact that I always need him. Sometimes I feel like he think he’s not helping, but I try and tell him how much better I am when hes around. At night he helps me sleep and its good. But he can’t be around forever and than I get even more anxious about the days he’s not around. Like life is going to get worst when he leaves for work or goes to hang out with his friends. Sometimes when I know he’s doing something without me I get paranoid that hes annoyed with how Ive been acting. He’s not though, I know he’s not. I just get nervous when he’s not around that something is going to happen and I cant talk to him….
I have another friend in a different city that has been there as well. She has experience in these types of things so I find her really easy to talk to. But again, she lives in another city and can’t always be there. Between these two people I know I have support, but Im afraid of whats going to happen when they can’t be around and I need someone to talk to… I can’t expect them to always be there even though its so much better when they are.
If anyone out there has some advice or is going through the same thing Id love to hear how you deal with it….. Ive spent 3 weeks crying at night and basically never sleeping. I dont want it to get worse than it is….. Im worried that things are going to get worse.
April 17, 2013 at 3:59 am #18731
Hey there Jay.
It sounds like things feel like they are spiraling, falling down around your attempts to hold them together. It’s good that you were able to put fingers to keyboard and write it out here. Welcome.
You say that you’re graduating in a few weeks, and it makes me wonder how much of the anxiety that seems to be washing over you right now is being triggered by trepidation about that transition. My sense is of things coming to an end…like you’ve been walking for a long time, and things made at least a measure of sense, but that when the sidewalk ends, you’re terrified of falling off of the edge. I can hear how lost you are, caught in a whirlwind of doubt and fear about so many parts of your life right now…life after school, the loss of your job as a presence in your life, your family’s expectations and disconnection from your life, the balancing act of using friends as support, and agonizing sleeping problems…
You say that it feels like your whole life is falling apart. I can hear how utterly overwhelmed you feel. It sounds like the stress has never been higher, and you’re wondering how much further your strength can take you…that must be terrifying to be questioning. Especially since, from what you’ve said, you already feel like you’re losing control some days, unable to sleep, unable to do anything but obey those dark emotions that bring so much fear, anxiety, and doubt. :’( That’s scary stuff, Jay. I can hear too how concerned you are that the way you’re feeling and functioning might not be normal. I don’t know enough about your life to tell you that (and normal is kind of subjective), but I can respect the anxious feelings behind your question. Have you been able to talk to anyone about that specific worry, about whether your sleep problems are unusual? It sounds like a cycle of frustration and fear, where you can’t sleep because of the stress, and then you stress and feel angry at yourself for not being able to sleep…?
I get the sense that in the midst of this storm of emotion and foggy fear, you’re desperately trying to hold on to the social connections that are there as supports. I’m sincerely happy to hear that your two friends are there for you, even if they aren’t always available. I’m also hearing the fears you have about overburdening people or losing them from your life. That fear sounds debilitating, and I can hear how constantly it worries you to wonder what people are doing when you’re not with them. It’s like you’re wondering if the ground you’re standing on is suddenly going to collapse…
I’m so glad that you reached out here. You can write to us ANY time here. You can also chat live with us any night 6-11pm (or until 3am from now till April 21st — we’re doing a late night trial). And if you’re interested, we also offer email counseling. Stay connected, Jay.
We’re “hear” for you,
The Support Team
April 17, 2013 at 5:12 am #18732
I’ve noticed in the last few days that things have been changing. I can’t remember when this all started but I do remember that I was constantly a zombie. I wasn’t attending classes and the day to day of my life seemed so trivial and exhausting. I slept a lot and just getting up to complete whatever the task of the day was so draining. I think things are changing but I havn’t decided yet if its good thing or bad.
I think it all started with a day last week. I remember going to work and texting my friend saying that at that moment I was happy. It seemed a little weird saying that out loud because it’s something so simple. But it was true, in that moment I was. I find that I’ve had a few of those moments since than. They don’t last long and are few and far between. But they are there. Even tonight(as well as a few times in the last couple days) I found myself laughing. Again, when it happens its surprising to me. However, the times that I am “bad”… I think I’m worse. As I was saying, a couple weeks ago the level was relatively stable, but always a low. Now I have some highs, but the lows are lower.
My friends were gone this past weekend and there was a couple times I was at an all time low. I’m not sure if I would rather always be at 50%, or be at 25% half the time and 75% the other half. Last night was bad as well… but my friend was over. I feel like when things get bad and he’s there I get back to reality faster. I’m not sure why that is, but just him reminding me that things are going to be ok keeps my thoughts in check. When it happens and he’s not it destroys the rest of my night, I spend many hours lost in tears rather than the 30 mins or so when Im with him. I guess that’s why I’m scared when he’s not around. The days are getting better, it’s just the nights that I think are getting worse. I’m thankful that the days are functional though because of everything in my life that I have to complete.
Also, a family member of mine passed away. I knew it was coming, in fact I was preparing for it. I’m going to miss her, she was that person I always had growing up that was kind of around. My parents showed up on sparse occasions when it was most convenient, but when she married into my family I was always excited when I got to see her. She was just that fun person who was easy to talk to. When I found out she was sick I was devastated but I’ve had months to process the information. I found out she passed in the midst of everything else that is going on. I was ashamed though of how I acted. Last night when I was lying awake I realized that I kind of made it about me. Like “why is another thing happening to me”. I’m not sure if that was because I saw it coming or what. But I do want to say how much I will truly miss her.
I keep telling myself that things are going to get better when my life settles down. I’m avoiding talking to a professional about it because I’m afraid that it will make it ‘real’. Like somehow I’m going to be labeled differently. I have made an inner pack with myself though. If in a couple weeks, after my life settles down and I don’t start to feel better I will take the worlds advice and go see someone. I mean it’s easier to say now, but it’s at least a goal that I have.
I have never really been ‘articulate’ in my words when I talk to friends. Its nice to be able to write them down and think through my thoughts. At night when I feel like I’m losing control a million things come through my mind. Its nice to try and sort them out here before I go to bed.
… until next time.
April 18, 2013 at 10:07 am #18735
I’m getting the sense that posting on our Forum is helping you sort stuff out, rather than having all the thoughts jumbled in your brain.
I’m so sorry to hear about your loss Jay. You must be feeling very devastated, amidst everything going on, to have to experience grief of someone that was so dear to you. It sounds like you were very fond of her and have some pleasant memories together. I can hear that on the one hand you feel like you shouldn’t think about yourself at a time like this, but on the other hand it hurts deeply to lose her, even after the time that you had leading up to her death. The timing sucks, and it sounds like it’s leaving you dealing with shame about your reaction on top of the struggle that already existed. :'(
I get a general sense that change is on the wind for you…like it feels as though things are shifting in your emotions. Whether that change is a good or bad thing seems to be a question loaded with anxiety; I can imagine that when you’re feeling like you’re walking a tightrope already, the thought of an uncertain change in how you’re feeling could be frightening. And from what you’ve seen of this shift already, it’s hard to gauge whether it is something that might help over time, since it’s allowing you moments of light, but the dark times are that much worse. :S I’m hearing that things still feel out of control, and that you’re both relieved and scared to find that you’re leaving that state of 50% behind…I wonder if it’s getting difficult to know HOW you feel, when your emotions so often seem to be running in opposite directions?
You have a valuable support in this friend of yours. And it is incredible that you recognize it and are able to express your gratitude to him. I can hear that on some nights, when things are really bad, he can be the anchor that helps hold your feelings in check, and that he pulls you out of the worst moments more quickly than you can alone. Even just the thought of having to face some nights without him there is awful…it gives me a very good idea of how horribly low some of those nights get for you.
We get an interesting view into people’s lives when they post on the forum, because it’s all through their own words. Here is what I feel I can see of you, from your posts: you are deeply aware of your own emotional state, and want to be able to deal with it and feel better and less overwhelmed. I can see that you are struggling sometimes (especially at night) to keep your head above the emotional waves…but that you really want to be able to work through these things. And to that end, you work hard to find the little moments of light in the darkness. I really respect how hard you’re trying, and the pact that you made with yourself about going to see a professional, even though it hurts you to think that you might have to…it can take a lot of energy to force yourself to think about doing something like that.
Regardless of whether you seek professional help, you can certainly keep “thinking” things out here. I hope that it continues to be a good sounding board for you when your mind is buzzing with thoughts and stresses.
Here for you next time, every time.
The Support Team
April 19, 2013 at 4:56 am #18736
I am deeply aware what’s happening to me. I don’t fully understand it. But I am aware that what I feel is more over-powering than it should be. I’m struggling finding the right way to handle it. I am trying to be more open to the suggestions of others, but I know in myself what avenues to avoid and what avenues to try.
I’m not sure why this is… But I feel like lately my life has been more of an act. In the past few days I feel that to an outsider that my life looks normal and that there is nothing wrong. But inside everything has been pretty overwhelming and I’m barely getting through my days. Even to my friends, I feel like they just have no idea who I am anymore. And that’s because I don’t let them see it.
My life right now is really overwhelming and I just want to scream most of the time. It takes a lot of energy itself to maintain a certain level of positivity and just focus my life one day at a time. Especially since lately everything has been just so flip-floppy. I think overall though that it’s probably healthy that I’m putting up a little bit of a front to people. I mean, if I just yelled at people all day I dont think Id have any more friends. I only let a few people through.
I have been really angry at myself the last couple of days. I am angry that I am SO ridiculously needy. I am a relatively needy person in general but lately the level is just so high. But I’ve spent so much of my energy lately focusing on keeping this feeling as low as possible. It takes everything that I have to just not let it all out. It takes so much energy that sometimes I try to just shut off the levels of communication to the outside world so that I don’t say things to people that I will regret after a few days.
I’m hoping that things get better soon. I am just getting so tired of not being myself and being happy and outgoing. I have a trip in a few days and I feel like if I’m going to be shut down throughout the entire trip than I might as well not even bother going. But I really want to go and spend time with my friends. I’m just scared of spending the weekend before the trip alone and than going and putting on an act for a couple days. I just want to go and be myself. I dont know if I have the energy to do that.
I think sleeping is improving… slightly? Its not that I am sleeping throughout the entire night yet, but it seems to be more on/off than it was previously. I would say that I wake myself up in tears about half the time now rather than basically every night. And for the most part I can see it coming depending on how my overall day is. This is another reason I’m really anxious about my weekend and my trip next week. What if I’m away and something happens at night… People that I will be with will be confused cause they have no idea whats going on. I hope things go well for the next couple of days so that I can just relax and be myself.
April 21, 2013 at 4:56 am #18739
I don’t know to describe the last couple days of my life. I like to think that thing’s are getting better and that overall my mood is improved. If you were to ask a friend, I would guess that they would say that my overall attitude has been more positive. If you were to ask me I would probably agree.
Overall though this weekend has been particularly hard. Actually, the last two weekends have been particularly hard. I think it’s definitely the worse when I feel lonely. I just get caught up in my own emotions and I don’t know how to handle it. So my new tactic lately — don’t be alone. Seems easy right? It is. I’m not challenged by surrounding myself with people. I’m challenged by being surrounded with people I can be myself around. There is not many people that I don’t have to act cheerful, or make jokes. In fact, I can count them on one hand and not use my thumb. So I guess what I’m trying to say is that it’s less the loneliness and more the avoidance of being myself.
I can’t shake this feeling like my life is going to be completely different in the next few months. It sounds obvious with graduation and everything. But it’s more than that. I have this crazy feeling like one day I’m going to wake up and realize I have nothing in common with the girl I thought I was. It’s really hard to explain what I mean… But at some level I’m prepared for the unexpected in that sense. I think it’s related to the job stresses I’m about to face. I’ve spent the last 7 years of my life avoiding moving back home. It would probably be the absolute worse thing for me. That’s terrible to say but its true.
That brings me to last night. I woke up in a panic and tears because of a dream I was having. I honestly can’t remember all the details of the dream, but my heart was racing and I remember a few faces. I know my siblings were in at and we were doing something. I don’t know why that caused me so much pain of even if the two are related. Unfortunately, I didn’t sleep for the rest of the night.
I think my sleep has been improving though. I definitely nap during the day now which is a bonus. During the night is 50/50. It is definitely better when I am not alone, but since I can’t expect that all the time I think I’ve just grown to accept it. I sleep about half the night. I think even these half-assed sleeps have improved my moods compared to what was happening before.
Im still really nervous for my trip. I just don’t how it’s going to go because my moods change at the drop of a hat. There’s going to be no where to go if thing’s get bad. There’s no one that I’ll be able to talk to and rub my back when/if things get bad. I just don’t want anywhere there to know that I’ve been having a hard time lately. I’m not close with anyone that would make me comfortable in that situation.
Overall, I am glad things seem to be improving. Not as much as I would have liked it to, but I’m trying to be more positive and realistic about my circumstances right now. I think that’s the least I can offer my friends who are trying to help me through.
April 22, 2013 at 6:23 pm #18740
I just wanted to take the time to express my feelings before going away for the week and completing my last exam.
Even though I can’t help but say that overall my mood is more positive and uplifting, I’m not having the easiest time with sleep. Last night I fell asleep easy but woke up at around 2-3am with the most anxiety I have ever felt. I was overwhelmed realizing today would end my academic career and I was going to the woods to celebrate without those people who have been my rocks. I was having a hard time breathing and focusing on the fact that this should be a really happy time for me. However, it didn’t last terribly long and I was able to fall back asleep after. So I guess overall, I’ll take that as a win. I can’t wait for the day I sleep throughout the night though.
I’m really going to try and make this week worth the last 7 years of my life. It’s going to be a real test to see if I can push myself to stay and have fun and to keep a positive attitude with my friends. I’m hoping that after the exam my anxiety stays low. I have some plans in place in case things get too overwhelming and I need a break from everything that’s going on. And really, I’ll have my phone in case I need to talk to my friends to get that break.
It’s hard for me to accept that I am still having problems sleeping though – I have so much support from those that are close to me I shouldn’t still be feeling like this. I know many changes are about to happen so I am hoping that with changes in my life there are changes in my anxiety — for the better obviously. I have changed my day-to-day attitude but I think it’s time work on the sleep a little more. I’ve said this before, I sleep TONS better when I have someone beside me; it’s a sense of security and the feeling that I am not alone. But I am thinking that maybe the time is coming to try some over the counter prescriptions just to get my sleep more regular. I’ll be trying/thinking more about that possibility in the next few days.
Until next time…
April 23, 2013 at 1:24 am #18741
More than anything else, the way that you describe your emotions right now paints a picture for me of someone walking across shifting sands, unsure of where there might be a sinkhole, or a sudden edge. I can hear how hard it is to trust to anything that you’re feeling right today, and to trust that the landscape might be similar tomorrow…
I get the sense that there are two huge struggles within you right now: the way that you share your true self with others, and the way that you understand yourself.
On the first count, having other people around you seems to really help your mood, as you say; especially when they are people around whom you can relax your guard and be yourself. You seem to get a lot of comfort and solace from their presence. Still, I can hear how you sometimes feel angry and guilty for needing support from friends. From the sounds of it, it’s emotionally draining to be alone, but also tiring to be around people sometimes. It’s so interesting what you said about wanting to be yourself but not being sure if you have the energy. Like hiding things behind a “happy mask” is difficult, but it’s even harder to let people see the truth of your experience? I can imagine the immensity of explaining to someone how you’re doing when you’re still trying to comprehend it yourself.
And it sounds like that’s the other big question, hey? It sounds like you’re very much treading carefully because of this nagging feeling you’re having that everything is about to change in some way that is bigger than graduation, bigger than moving…and is related to who you are on a very existential level. The turmoil that you describe, of the flip-floppy emotions and the uncertainty of the future, sounds like it is disorienting and disturbing you. I get a sense that the week ahead represents such a huge shift in your day-to-day life, and that the thought of changes ahead is both terrifying and relieving in a way, as though it will answer questions you have worked for 7 years to solve.
I can hear you are exploring many different coping strategies, some that are tried and true for you (like calling your close friends) and some you are willing to try for the first time (such as an over-the-counter sleep aid prescription). I think your openness to trying different, helpful, healthy things is admirable, and I am so grateful you are sharing what has been working for you and acting the role model for others who may stumble upon this forum and read your story. Thank you so much for checking in, you will be in our hearts and minds this week.
the Support Team
April 28, 2013 at 7:52 am #18747
Ok, so it’s been a pretty hectic week in general. I’ve tried to post on the days that are particularly hard (although I’ve missed some this week). But today there is an extreme amount of inner turmoil that I don’t know how to explain. I don’t know how to explain it to my friends anymore and I feel like a fake. I’ll try to get it out here. There are so many emotions that I need to sort out.
Disappointment. I am disappointed in the way my parents treat me as an adult and their daughter. They have no idea who I have become, and the worst part is that I don’t take the time to let them know. They think I value the same things as they do. They don’t know that I have grown up and become aware of the failures they have as parents. But the worst is that I see some of it as my fault cause I have never told them. Being a parents is one of the hardest jobs someone can have and not everyone can be perfect, but I expect more from them.
Embarrassment. I’m embarrassed that I still can’t pick myself up. There is only a few individuals who have any idea what’s going on, and to them I’m embarrassed. Which seems silly right, like why now rather than earlier? I think it’s because they weren’t expecting it to last this long either. They are doing everything right. But still I’m embarrassed when I tell them things and I can’t help but get the feeling that they think “ok, enough is enough”. Which leads me to my next emotion…
Guilt. WHY do I have these thoughts in my head? I feel guilty because I KEEP doubting my friends. They do everything right, say everything right, done everything that they can but I STILL get the feeling like I’m being too much. I am guilty I am taking away from their life and I don’t understand why I can’t just appreciate it and stop harassing them every time I get a thought they are mad at me.
Frustration. I am SOOOOOOO frustrated that I can’t enjoy simple things that I use to love. Why can’t I just go out with my friends and enjoy the sunshine or smile at good times. I am frustrated that I am no in the months since this started and I forget to congratulate other people for whats happening in their life because I am sooo wrapped up in mine.
Fear. I am scared that this is going to take over my life. That I will never be the person that everyone loved. That with everything going on in my life I will have no one left at the end of the day. Ultimately I am scared I will be alone. Today, I woke up from a nap almost pulling out my hair screaming in agony. So, I am scared that even though this hasn’t moved into more serious symptoms, I won’t be able to keep it at the level it is. But at the end of the day, I am scared that I’m going to hate myself for the person I have become and miss the person I was.
Jealousy. I am jealous when I see my friends laugh and have fun.
Nervousness. I am aware that eventually I am going to have to go in and see a professional. My friend offered to go with me the other night. I will probably need him there in order to actually go and with that I am brought back to the embarrassment emotion. But I am nervous that the doctor will just tell me this is all in my head and that everyone goes through hard times. And everything I have come to cope with is lost. I am nervous that eventually my friends are going to have to leave me. I can’t have people leave me right now and I’m really trying to be tough so that when that time comes I am prepared for it and I have a plan in place.
Lastly, the theme of my life. Overwhelmed. When I try and tackle everything above I become overwhelmed and break down in a mess of an emotional break down. Usually I don’t try and tackle it all at once, but I feel that at night it takes some serious will power to filter out out my emotions and prevent myself from crying. Some nights I do better than others.
I just need to know that people love me. That people are there for me. That I am important in someone’s word because with everything thats going on I forget and the cycle starts back at the top…
April 29, 2013 at 5:46 pm #18749
This morning is a good morning. Because my head is clear I wanted to explore something that has been on my mind for the last week. Maybe that will help me better understand it?
As I’ve explained in pervious posts, I am really reliant on my friend to help me through my nights. And I’ve come to realize that he will not be around for very much longer and I shouldn’t expect him to. He’s the type of person that needs his space and his life and I feel that I am probably interrupting his lifestyle and for our relationship to maintain where it is, I need to give him space.
So, I’m trying to figure out why it’s him that I need. Or even, IS it him that I need? The main thing that upsets me at night is that fear that I am alone in this world. I become very hysteric that no one understands me, that I can’t talk to anyone, that I’m fighting this and no one cares if I get through it. This is mainly what keeps me up in tears. However, I don’t necessary believe that it’s him that I need to get through these times. I believe it’s someone that I trust 100% without fault, someone that I know would do anything for me, someone that I feel comfortable seeing me like that, someone I know will not spread it around, and importantly someone I know loves me.
I can name a few people that I would trust just as much as a trust him. I’m really excited about a best friend that is coming home from a trip soon. However, because she has been away she isn’t fully aware about everything that is going on. I’m not particularly looking forward to going through everything with her, I wish she kind of just knew. But I assume I’m going to feel just as safe and wanted with her as I do with him.
However, nights ARE getting better. I am getting a lot better at telling how I will sleep at night by how I feel when I go to bed. This is a good thing because it helps me not take advantage of my friend. I’m putting in a serious effort of only asking him to stay over when I feel an ‘incident’ coming on. Also making sure I know the days he works early in the morning to make sure he also gets a good sleep. The other night was a perfect example. I could feel a sleepless, emotional night coming on and I asked to stay at his place. The night went much better than I know what would have been if I was alone.
Even though I am still feel like my last post 75% of the time, it’s not 100%. I’m getting better at looking at the positives and hopefully as the weeks go by that number keeps shrinking. I’m trying to be more positive. Unlike so many people out there I need to be thankful for what I have. And right now I’m thankful for WHO I have. If it wasn’t for 2-3 people I don’t know if I would have gotten through the last month. I don’t think I will ever be able to express that love. Especially as someone who isn’t articulate.
Lastly, I’ve noticed that I have been very “up and down” lately. I’ll be energetic and content and than an hour later I won’t be able to get off the couch for hours because I feel there is nothing in my life worth getting up for. I need this to change. I don’t like this mindset and I try hard to avoid it, but I think I need to let my friends more aware of this. I feel if there is someone kind of ‘monitoring’ (for lack of a better term) these days than hopefully a little motivation can break the cycle.
Here’s to a continued good day …
May 2, 2013 at 3:10 am #18752
Oh Jay, I am so glad to hear that you’re finding the good days are coming more often for you lately, although I would imagine when you are immersed in hard times, they aren’t made any less excruciating by being fewer and father between. I would guess you are feeling both relieved that there is a flicker of light at the end of the tunnel, and exhausted that the light still seems so far away from where you are right now.
I can hear how tormented you are by guilt that you might be laying more at your friend’s feet than he can sustain in your friendship…it seems as though you’re torn between meeting your need for companionship and meeting his need for autonomy. It sounds like you’ve been considering adding another support to your life in the form of a professional doctor or counsellor, and are weighing the fears you have of being rejected by a professional helper against the fear you have of losing the close connection you have with your friend. It can be a bit of a journey to find the right support professional, and I would imagine with everything else you have had going on for you lately it’s absolutely daunting to think of embarking on yet another big change. Know that we will continue to be here for you wherever that journey takes you
I’ve been really impressed by the level of self-reflection you’ve shown in your posts here…I can imagine that in some ways it’s frustrating to spend so much time and energy in your own head, but I can also see how it helps you to formulate plans of support by analyzing what has and has not been working for you. It’s an amazing process to see, thank you so much for continuing to share here for us and others. Here’s to a continued good day, indeed, and many more besides!
the Support Team
May 2, 2013 at 4:26 am #18753
Today I woke up in the best mood I have been in a long time. This was simply due to one fact; last night I slept approximately 8 hours without waking up once in the night. I have been taking sleeping pills lately and I am thankful for them. I was so well rested and it put me in such an brilliant mood that I made myself a great breakfast and was extremely productive. I did some work that I have been meaning to do and I went for a run. All the stresses in my life were at the back of my brain and there was no negativity in my attitude. This is the first time this has happened in over a month and I felt there was finally an end to my depression.
And what seems like the theme of my life, all good things must come to an end. Mid afternoon I found out an individual I went to high school with was in a serious car accident with no brain function on life support. I havn’t spoken or seen him in more than 5 years but I remember his laugh distinctly. We played on the sports teams together and he was so cheerful and outgoing. Even though we havn’t been close in years I just feel this pain in my chest and such sadness for his family. I knew his family really well and they were all so close. I can only imagine the pain they must be feeling having to go through something like that. I will keep them in my thoughts and prayers.
What this has made me realize tonight is that I am almost disgusted with myself for feeling the way I do. The last month I have been so wrapped up in my own problems complaining of what seems like silly things. There are families out there going through terrible, heart breaking crisis and I have been crying uncontrollably about things that now feel so small. But realizing this does not make happy about my life, it makes me terribly depressed that I can’t be happy with the things that I have. I have been so lucky in my life and I still can’t just be grateful. And with all of these feelings that have now crept up tonight it puts me back at a low.
My parents are also really close with this family and my mother is taking it really hard. Because of this, she has been very ‘motherly’ and caring today. I am almost happy?? that she is feeling like this because I think it almost has made her realize that she hasn’t been treating me very well. Its not that I am happy she is hurting, I am hopeful that she realizes that life can turn in a second and we don’t want to be on the outs if something was to happen. It’s the same for me I think; I should be more open with my parents can in an instant they can be gone and I don’t want the last conversation we have to be full of anger. Maybe this can help my relationship with my parents? Right now I just feel angry at them more because it took someone’s life to make them realize they need to speak to me like an adult.
It seems like the universe is making sure I am not happy. Like every time I feel the smallest bit of hope things are getting better the world turns everything upside down. I don’t know if the universe is just trying to make me stronger or trying to test me, but I really need it to stop. I am getting so tired of my brain working 500 miles a minute to try and keep up with my life. I’m getting exhausted.
Please let this not detour my recovery. I was fully expecting set backs and I know one good night doesn’t mean I’m not depressed anymore. But I don’t know if I can handle any more big emotional breakdowns. I just hope the sleeping pills can keep working so I can keep my sleep schedule up.
May 5, 2013 at 3:16 am #18756crashingwaveMember
i just want to let you know that reading all this, top to bottom, just as it is, is giving me hope. i wish you only more good days, jay, with newfound understanding about yourself and the people in your life. you deserve to feel good about yourself. i wish i could write more but i am exhausted myself from an anxious ride on the rollercoaster of my mind. so i will end this off with another thank you to you and the support team person.
May 5, 2013 at 5:17 pm #18757
crashingwave, thank you for your response. I didn’t realize how uplifting it would be to have someone comment that’s going through the same thing. I love the fact that my story is giving you hope and I wish you better days as well.
The last couple days have actually been above average. A couple nights ago I was able to take my friend out for a nice dinner and tell him to his face how much I appreciate everything he has done for me. I don’t think I actually have said it in person before, and I’m really happy that I was able to do that. I said something to him that I want to share with you all…
I have always been a science person. I believe in things that are concrete and without interpretation. I like facts that are undisputable. The idea of mental illness was so vague in my mind and I never understood the importance of it. I grew up in a super small and closed off town and you never heard of it. It was never a topic of conversation…ever. At dinner the other night I said thank you for specifically introducing me to this topic and helping me realize how important it is to have someone to talk to. Even if it’s on this forum, being able to just talk it out is extremely helpful.
During the dinner I accepted the fact that I am not being a burden to him. This is the first time I believed he was not being annoyed by me and that he truly doesn’t mind everything I have asked of him. I think that’s important to my recovery. The stress of feeling like a nuisance was actually adding to my overall anxiety. SO I am really happy that we were able to share our feelings and have a good open conversation. Mainly, I am happy we were able to just laugh and talk.
With all the good that has happened recently, I have had a little bit of a set back this week. With everything that has been going on with my parents and the death of a high school friend I found myself having a couple really bad nights. One night, I wasn’t able to sleep at all. I ended up uncontrollably screaming and I really hated my life. I spent the night between my car (so no one could hear me) and laying on my hammock. I felt lost and alone. I hated my life and where it was taking me. The following night (when I was with my friend) I thought it was going to be better. I was able to fall asleep fast but unfortunately I woke myself up in full tears. I couldn’t even tell you what was going through my head. I was angry at everything in my life. Again, having someone wrap their arms around me made me feel so secure, safe, and loved.
Last night was better than the nights before. However, I did wake up crying again. This time though it was shorter and not has “forceful”. Even though I was alone, I was able to organize my thoughts. It was a lot harder doing it alone but I was able to get through it.
There are a few triggers that I have recognized in myself. If these happen I can go from happy to a serious low in a matter of seconds. My parents are able to do it when they say something that I find ignorant or selfish. When I’m not included in something my friends are doing I feel vulnerable and alone. When I feel that I am being lied to (usually I’m not, but for some reason I feel like it). When I get frustrated with something that I don’t understand. Lastly, when I don’t get a good sleep and I am exhausted. When I’m exhausted I get irritable quickly and I just want to yell at everyone for everything.
May 6, 2013 at 1:04 am #18758
There’s so much going on for you: so many emotions and thoughts fighting for space in your mind. Like crashingwave, I’m inspired by you, by the strength that you show by working things out here, and trying to keep as much positivity as possible.
So sorry to hear about your high school friend, Jay. I have no doubt that hearing about the accident was terrifying and tragic on a number of levels. Certainly the emotional fallout seems to have stirred up all kinds of emotions that perhaps you were not prepared to feel all of a sudden. I can hear how guilty and exasperated you are at yourself for still feeling inexplicably unhappy about “small things” when this other family seems to be facing a pain that seems naturally more devastating…and on top of that sits your own feeling of grief, and a lot of sudden questions about what it means to people to lose someone like that. I’m glad that, in a strange way, it is providing some motivation to be on better terms with your parents…but even that is not without its bitter undertones from what you’ve said, and you’re left wondering why it takes a tragedy to elicit respect and care from your own family. :S
You’re really seeing how strong an impact sleep has on your life, hey Jay? It’s good to hear that the sleeping pills have been giving you a measure of relief, even if the night time is still often rife with emotional lightning storms. I do think that it is important to seek out some of the things that can help us cope through the toughest moments, and I can sense that you are fighting hard to do just that. Definitely the friend that is supporting you is part of that net that can catch you in the worst moments, when the universe seems to be throwing awful and agonizing at you at once. I know I already told you how inspiring you are, but I’m going to add that taking your friend out to dinner to express your gratitude is one of the most amazing things I’ve ever heard. I’m so glad that it was a positive experience for you, and that it brought you to a place of feeling like you were less of a burden (from what you’ve told us, I think you got it exactly right when you said that it’s important to your recovery). It sounds like talking with your friend also dramatically changed the way that you think about mental illness; I wonder if opening up the conversation about the reality of mental illness helped you feel less anger at yourself for the feelings you are having?
Those feelings – especially the agonizing grief, disappointment, stress and loneliness that seem to be part of the storm that you find yourself in when your mind won’t stop at night — are clearly still huge, Jay. I can only imagine how devastating it is to wake up in the middle of the night to feel your world crumbling around you, or to not be able to sleep at all, and just need to scream to get the pain out of your aching heart. We are here to listen as you talk (write?) through the disorientation and weariness of those moments. I can hear how enormous the struggle is sometimes, and I respect the effort that you are forcing yourself to put into sorting out your thoughts, even when you are faced with the added anxiety of doing it alone.
It’s also shows great awareness that you are identifying what some of your emotional triggers are. I wonder if you feel better prepared to cope with them if you can name them?
Keep connected Jay; as long as you are writing, we will be here to listen to the triumphs and the setbacks.
-The Support Team
May 6, 2013 at 1:06 am #18759
May 6, 2013 at 6:58 pm #18761
Thank you everyone for telling me that I am inspiring. I am just trying to be honest and open in hopes that exploring my thoughts will help me understand how to deal with them better.
The last couple days have been interesting. The sunny days seem to be helpful in my overall spirits. Its hard to be sad when the sun in shining through my windows. I’m trying to do something fun outside and enjoy the weather when I have time. Maybe if I catching some heat than I will sleep better at night.
Last night was average. I am still sleeping on average about 4 hours. There’s been a couple nights in the last two weeks that I slept the entire time. Last night was about 4. I am really confused and frustrated about how I can be functional throughout the daytime but at night I just can’t sleep. I can go through an entire day without any problems but 75% of the time I wake up at night crying. I just do not understand why I am doing that.
I am thankful I am productive and ‘happy’ (I don’t know if happy is the right word, maybe content is more accurate) during the day. On the plus side its been about a week since there was an incident where I couldn’t get out of bed during the day. Hopefully that keeps going.
May 8, 2013 at 3:08 am #18763
Ok, so a lot has been going on in the last 24 hours…
There are two people in my life who I consider best friends. One I’ve spoken about throughout this entire forum and it’s pretty clear how important he is to me. But the other has been across the country for the last 4 months. She has missed everything that has happened and it’s been really hard to keep her updated because long distance is expensive and I can only say so much over texting. Yesterday, she came home
I am soo relieved that she is finally home. She has always been there for me and I’ve always been so honest with her. However, I was very nervous about her coming home only because I knew I had to fill her in with everything going on in my life. The thought of reliving everything was such an overwhelming feeling that I think it was a part of the reason why yesterday I was at a low. We all went for dinner yesterday and throughout the entire time I was quiet, angry, scared, and very emotional. I tried soo hard to not break out in tears. I was so happy to see her, but I couldn’t bring myself to be engaging. Because I was trying to hard to be myself it was very emotional for me that I couldn’t. On the way home I was embarrassed and angry that I wanted to scream and cry.
After dinner I was able to sit down with my other best friend and fill her in with everything that has been going on. Like usual, she was support and had lots of suggestions that I could try. But more importantly, she listened and was completely understanding. Having another female around me I think was really helpful because she was able to relate with some of the extreme emotional reactions that I was having. She was also able to give me lots of stories of friends that have been going through similar things. These stories were really successful in helping me realize that no one is judging me and that doctors deal with these things on a daily basis. I’ve agreed to go with her to see someone this week.
All these new realizes made my night very hard. I didn’t sleep at all again and was very very emotions. However, I did spend time thinking things over. What I realized is that these two people in my life bring different attributes to the table. The 1st one is someone that I trust more than 100%. He talks me down when I am being unreasonable and is able to calm me at my worst possible moments. I know without a doubt I can talk to him literally about anything ever. He is the only person I feel that comfortable with. Period. The second one is someone that I can relate with. She is so strong minded and funny. I can be telling her someone so serious and someone will just make a ridiculous joke and crying goes to laughing. What I love about her is the way she can relate to female emotional issues and I find that feeling of being alone is gone.
Even though the last two days have been quite a low. I hope that the changes that are happening means that things continue to improve.
One step back, two steps forward??
May 10, 2013 at 2:04 am #18764
I hear you about the sun; it’s been tremendously beautiful here! Cool that you’re getting out some when you can; I’m told that it’s good for you.
It’s a lot of turmoil and change that you’ve been going through in the last couple of days, from the sound of it. It sounds like your friend coming back to town created a wave of relief and gratitude, but that the emotional chaos that surrounded your reunion rocked the boat somewhat too, and you’ve had to work hard at not falling right out into the waves. :S
I think I can understand how the dinner with your friends -something that seems from the outside like it should have been simple and joyous — was filled with all kinds of expectations and unspoken pressures for you. Even though your friends are wonderful and understanding, it sounds like a daunting task to relive the struggle and pain that you’ve been through in order to express your experience. That night was especially hard, it sounds like, because you came out of the dinner feeling so low about yourself for getting so emotional and out of control when you were just trying to be yourself. I can hear how the intensity of emotion is still very overwhelming at moments…
I’m glad to hear that you were able to have a good heart-to-heart with your friend who just got back. She sounds like a great person who is really willing to take the time and hear what’s going on for you. It also sounds like she had some perspectives and stories to share that helped you feel less alone with your emotions and more willing to reach out to professional supports?
“One step back, two steps forward” indeed, Jay. It does sound like that…like you are working hard to face the demons that have been haunting you, and along the way there are some nights that absolutely knock you flat with distress, but that you’re also learning about yourself and figuring out who you can trust to truly listen when you need it. Your descriptions of both of your friends are filled with powerful sentiments, and really reflect the connection and love that you feel towards them. I’m curious if writing it out here helped clarify those things that you love about them? (I know that some people can solidify thoughts that are floating around in their minds by writing them out)
It’s also good to hear that even though there were tears, there was also some laughter. There’s so much hope in your words, Jay, and I think it shows HUGE strength. We will be here for you as you navigate all the chaos…
-The Support Team
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