Archive for listen

listen…

Posted in mental health, self harm, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 01/03/2014 by doyourememberthattime

Today is Self-Injury Awareness Day (SIAD). As expected most of the mainstream mental health organisations have been out in force on social media. This should be a good a thing, but as usual the almost entirely miss the mark. All of the major charities trotted out the same tired recovery narrative with a sprinkling of inspirational bullshit. Did anyone ever manage to quit self-harm by drawing fucking butterflies? I doubt it.
If I sound frustrated, it’s because I am. These organisations are supposed to be for people like me. They are meant to advocate for me, but they are not remotely interested in what I have to say. When I tell them what I need and want, I am ignored. I have approached numerous organisations both directly & through social media to explain that they do not represent me (or the many people I know who struggle with mental illness). I am always met with silence or a patronising we know best attitude.
I don’t want to hear exclusively about teenage girls when discussing self-harm. It’s a stereotype & it makes it perpetuates a stigma that makes my life harder.
I don’t want to constantly hear tales of people who have recovered. I’m happy they are no longer suffering, but their story is not my story. Some people do not get better. Mental illness is a life long struggle for many people. Where are those voices? This representation of mental health difficulties is not accurate or helpful. It creates a misleading picture for people with no experience in the field. Even more problematic is the message it sends to those of who are still ill. It says our lives have no merit; that we will only be worth talking about when we recover.
I’m sick of the success stories. All those wonderful people who fought & won. The ones achieving amazing things. It just makes me feel a greater failure. I want the truth. Publicise blogs like this one. Tell the world the blood and guts reality of this disease. Let me speak. Give me (& others like me) the opportunity to show people they’re not alone. That the daily (hourly) fight to keep breathing is not that uncommon. Our lives are still have meaning & value even if we never get back to work or publish a book or raise a million pounds for charity.
Stop giving me stupid advice. Writing on my arms cannot replace cutting. Ice and rubber bands are just telling its ok to hurt myself as long as it doesn’t get messy. Having a bath will not stop a war raging in head. Ditto a cup of bloody tea. Lavender doesn’t cure insomnia. Painting my nails will not make me love myself.

Most of all, listen to us. We know best. We wake up to every morning. Our knowledge is hard won. Please use it to help others who are suffering.

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sometimes, i hear my voice & its been, silent all these years…

Posted in depression, hope, mental health, trust with tags , , , , , , , , , on 28/02/2012 by doyourememberthattime

i finally saw my new psychiatrist last week

my last dr left & being assigned a new one taken some months

i did not have a good relationship with my previous psychiatrist

in fact

she terrified me

 

she was a good example of what mental health professionals

should

not be

 

she always appeared to be very judgemental

her approach was

cold

harsh

blameful

i always left appointments feeling

worthless

she basically shored up my

self

loathing.

the most troublesome aspect of our therapeutic relationship

was

that she didn’t actually want to treat me

she appeared to have given up

i enquired

more than once

about a change of medication

 some chemical help with my

anxiety

&

insomnia

her response was always the same

i had exhausted my options

i was now left with

lithium

or the status quo

she dismissed my fears about lithium

and

declared

that she could not help me

if i would not accept her advice

 

and

so

i was stuck

she didn’t help

she just scared me

but

i was too frightened to ask for someone else

i didn’t feel i had the right

to question her

 

for once the fates were on my side

she left

giving me the opportunity

to access real help

 

my new psychiatrist

is a marvel

i was so frightened to see him

and

incredibly relieved

after our first meeting

 

he listened to me

he didn’t dismiss how i felt

he spoke to me like an intelligent person

not

some pathetic loon

was asked pertintent questions

and

was interested in my replies

he displayed

empathy

and kindness

 

this dr have me options

I HAVE OPTIONS

 

he explained why he was offered certain drugs

what they could do for me

what the side effects might be

he cared what i thought

he accepted my reservations

and

allowed me the final decision

after much discussion

we decided on a new drug regime

one that i actually believe might help me

 

for the first time

someone is actively treating

insomnia

and

anxiety

as well as depression

 

everyone should have access to this kind of help

so often

the mentally ill

are

dismissed

and

short changed

 

this new dr

has given me hope

for that

i will be forever grateful.