I have this persistent, permanent underlying bad feeling… I’ve had it my entire life, and no matter what I do, I can’t get it to go away… not for very long anyway. It always returns.
The only way I can describe it is a crave, a need, to fill a void that exists in my core. it’s an empty feeling, a missing piece, a lack of some thing very important. These days it presents as an urge to put something in my mouth. Something nice, that will make me feel good. It’s often been the way, either consuming something intoxicating like alcohol or drugs, to relieve the feeling. Then there was the starving, followed by the binging and purging, in an attempt to gain power and control over it. Then there was the cutting, where I would try to drain it away.
I’m in therapy, and I can’t identify why or what this is. Is it an underdeveloped ego? Low self esteem? Anxiety? There is a huge, gaping hole inside me where something big should be. But I don’t know what! How can I fix what I don’t know?
It feels like I am lost, alone, lonely, left out, unheard, unnoticed, ignored, unimportant, bored, stuck, frustrated, angry, paralysed, muted, afraid, laughable, weak, pathetic, not taken seriously, disrespected, powerless, out of control, upset, irritated, not trusted, judged, put down, taken advantage of, used, abused, offended, tired, hopeless, unsure, uncertain, unstable, disliked, overreactive, sensitive, delicate, fragile… bad. In general. All the negative feelings and emotions you can think of.
I drink daily, to ‘take the edge off’. “Take the edge off what?” My therapist asked… a question that plagues me… what’s wrong with me? And how do I fix it?
I can’t go on using maladaptive coping mechanisms to get short-term relief from this feeling. I can’t continue to attempt to fill the void with alcohol. I need to figure this shit out and address the issue.
So I’ve been in my new (managers) role for a whole month now, (I still can’t believe it!). All in all… it’s gone very well. My manager, however, neglects to support me, which I am not used to! I get zero guidance, few instructions and minimal praise. But, it’s just meant I’ve had to stand up and very quickly become a strong, independent leader. I’ve had to put my boss boots on a few times, things are taking shape though, and i’ve got to remember that me and the team are all learning.
I’ve also started Therapy. Tuesday afternoons at 4:00pm, which would be impossible as I work 8:30am-4pm, but I requested that we do it via video calls, so I don’t have to travel a million miles across town and have to miss work.
It’s going well, only three sessions in. I like my therapist. He seem’s very fair, insightful, informed, empathetic, understanding, humble and kind. I’ll refer to him as ‘J’. He’s already gained my respect, we’ve spoken about my previous attempts at therapy and what I got, or got denied (in one case) from it. I like that he is conscious not to go over the same things as before, and he seems eager to help me. He’s commented on my ability to reflect on things and convey my message clearly, which I appreciated. You know me, love a bit of praise!
After my last post – the interview I did for Business Development and Data Analysis job within the company was unsuccessful… to be fair, I was actually a little bit relieved. It was a shot in the dark for a pay increase and I was under qualified. I would have been out of my depth had I have been successful. Do that was interview number one.
Interview number two… after applying for the Lead role in a similar company’s employment department and hearing nothing back I was open to the job market. I received a phone call out of the blue from a recruitment agency who found my CV on CV Library. They had a vacancy to fill in the employment department of a charity/organisation that they thought I might be interested in. I heard them out and surprise, surprise – it was a mental health employability organisation that work with CMHT’s in the NHS. One of which I have had some level of support from. So an interview was set up with me over teams as the salary was set to be again a good five grand more than I am on currently. It was over Microsoft Teams, and I got through the interview with the opinion that it had gone really well. To be honest I thought I had it in the bag. However, the agency called me a few days later letting me know I’d been unsuccessful. I was actually shocked. I had more than enough experience but the feed back was that I talked my way off topic. That’s clearly my ADHD coming into play, along with your general interview nerves. So that was another fail.
The same day I found out I’d failed the second interview I received an email asking me to call a number regarding my application for the employability lead role (the one I thought I’d been overlooked for). So I phoned and they told me they loved my (10 page long) application and would like to invite me to interview! I was so thrilled. They explained the reason why it was so long since the application deadline to shortlisting was due to staffing absences. They postponed the shortlisting process until everyone could be together. I agreed and book the day off Annual Leave.
The interview was at 10am. It was a three part interview, 30 mins shadowing, 30 mins panel, and 30 mins values. I got through it, but after the last two knock backs I couldn’t tell if what I had done would be good enough. I felt pretty good in my outfit strutting around town all afternoon, post manager role interview. They told me I’d find out if I was successful either the next day or by the end of the week.
The very next day I was back at work. My first appointment didn’t show up. I got a phone call from an unknown number. It was one of the people who were on the panel telling me I was successful and had got the job of DWP Employability Lead! I almost screamed! This was everything I’d been dreaming about since spending about 10 hours on a 10 page application. I knew I had the relevant experience to be a manager, just needed to break through and be given that initial opportunity to prove myself in the role.
I’m so thrilled! This was more money salary wise than the other two jobs I went for. This one is a nine and a half grand increase! Biggest pay rise ever! I’ve handed my notice in at my current job and have had the official job offer letter from the new place. Both are homelessness charitable organisations, so I’m well versed in their clientele/needs. Only difference is – now I’ll be leading a team who do what I do now. I will be middle management. No longer customer facing. So ‘climbing that ladder’ as I said in a previous post, is now happening!!
My start date is Monday 7th March 2022. My working hours (which scare me a little) will be 8:30am – 4:00pm… I am shit at early starts….. that will have to change. Need to set the bar for my team. Can’t be a role model if I’m late! I’m so excited and nervous at the same time. Apparently I’m starting on the same day as my team! To be honest I would have preferred to have had at least a one day head start on them, so that I can get to grips with the targets snd what I’ll be asking of them.
Anyway. For now I’m just doing handover stuff at work with my manager and colleagues. It feels so strange that I’ll be moving on and up. we have all agreed that we’ll be in close contact once I’m gone, which is nice. My manager has been amazing. Cannot fault her. She is my rock. I doubt I’ll get that kind of support in work again, but now I have to be that manager to others.
I saw a job vacancy within the company I work for, it was advertised internally and externally. The role is more business development and data analysis, but I was interested… plus it pays five grand more a year than my current role. So, I went for it. I told my manager well in advance that I was interested, and like a complete legend she was entirely supportive. She did say she wouldn’t want to lose me, but completely understood.
Tuesday I went to the interview. It was held at head office and I had to book the afternoon off to attend. I arrived in my ill fitted suit – I had put on extra weight over Christmas – and the interview happened.
To be fair…. I think it went okay. I talked a lot and answered their questions, they wrote a lot, which I hope was a good sign… when it came to the end I asked a few questions, including when should I hear if I have been successful or not? To which they said the end of the week.
Which is today…
Nothing. No answer either way. They said they may have to hold another day of interviews, so they’d let me know by the end of the week. But no, nothing, I’m left hanging all weekend.
My mate (and colleague) has discovered jobs going at a similar charity, looking for positions with our type experience… they are also recruiting for a lead position which I believe I qualify for. The pay is amazing!
The deadline is Monday so I’m going to apply. If nothing comes of it, fair enough. There is no loss. I have a job, an income, I’m comfortable with the work I do, I have a great manager who is more than supportive with my issues. I am lucky to be where I am.
So whatever happens, or if nothing happens, I’m fine. And I need to remind myself of that.
This is a good representation of me three years ago, vs me now…
I’m not very happy about it. I weighed myself today. I’m only 5’3” and I weigh 12 stone 1 lbs. that is not healthy! I can’t blame it on lockdown. It’s me. My attitude. I’ve gotten too relaxed with everything. I’m drinking waaaaayyy too much, and that all adds up in terms of calories. I’m even paying for a gym membership that I never use. It’s the prime example of self gratification by being a ‘member’ of a gym and living on good intentions but never going! Madness!!! And I wonder why I’m skint?! It’s because I’m always down the pub and never down the gym! My portions are huge and I eat whatever I want without even considering how unhealthy it might be. Every day is a treat! – not good!
Time for change! So I’ve started a diet club! Just me and my Mom, lol. But we weighed in today, and will do every Friday morning. I’m logging everything on a spreadsheet as motivation.
I’m just sick of being fat! For a fully recovered ex-anorexic turn bulimic I’ve gone to the other extreme! I need to regulate my relationship with food. At the moment I eat fast like I am starving! But I’m clearly not! I don’t have an eating disorder, but I do need to work on myself.
So! Smaller portions, less beer, more exercise. It’s really simple in theory, but practice is a different story. I need to want it enough to do it! I need the motivation! ADHD is really not helping with staying committed to it. I’ll keep the blog posted with my progress once a month or so. Because this is not primarily a weight loss blog. It’s my entire life.
Dom hates it when I mention my weight or anything on the topic of weight loss. He’s not happy with his weight gain either, but I think it’s because he doesn’t know how to respond without offending me or undermining my issue with it. He just tells me to stop talking about it and do something about it. So that’s what me snd my Mom are doing!
As you may have guessed from the title, I had covid this Christmas (I guess it’s ‘last’ Christmas now)… yep, the bloody virus that has plagued the world for the last few years finally caught up with me. And it meant I couldn’t spend Christmas Day with my family, which sucked, big time! Me and Dom were isolating, so he couldn’t go and stop with his family either. We made the best of a bad situation though. Neither of us were too ill on the big day, I’d actually started to test negative, but with Dom being positive we continued to isolate until the day after Boxing Day when we had both been negative for two days running.
My lovely Mom helped us out over the isolation period, did us a grocery shop, she even cooked and delivered us a full blown Christmas dinner on the day!!! I got to wave at her from the gate. It was so sweet of her, it made me happy-sad, (a concept that I’ve come up with to explain my conflicting emotions).
Anywho, Dom and I practically drank our way through the 10 (or more) day illness. I lost my sense of smell and taste at one stage, but thankfully it came back by Christmas Eve. Losing smell and taste is devastating! Especially during the holiday period where we are all indulging in deliciousness!
We had a quiet New Year’s Eve. I spent most of it doing e-learning for work… that’s right, I logged on to complete ruddy e-learning. 31st December was the deadline and I had left a LOT of it to the very last minute. I started at about midday and didn’t finish until about 10:30pm. What a way to start the new year! -trying desperately to finish off all the crap you always put off, and tie up loose ends.
Just before the strike of twelve I called my Mom and then joined Dom in a Zoom call to his mates. We got drunk and slept late on New Year’s Day, as is the done thing (if you don’t have children).
I’m feeling pretty positive about the new year, I will continue to progress, in all areas of life. Slow as I am – I am getting better…
I have just under a week and a half until I break up for Christmas. Soooo much paperwork to get done, it is unbelievable. But can I find my focus?… of course not!! ADHD is owning me at the moment! I can hardly do anything!!! I haven’t even done any Christmas shopping yet! Time is ticking!!
You can probably feel my frustration with all the exclamation marks. So I’ve taken myself to the pub, mainly to have as word with myself on my blog to pull it together, have a pint and buy some gifts online and pray they arrive before the big day.
To be honest, the pub is soothing, the crappy Christmas tunes, a beer in arms reach and the fires going. Makes a change from the house. Christmas is not ruined yet! If only I could work in the pub in the day time lol.
This weekend (just gone) was the annual Xmas meet up with me and my cousins. We’re all of a similar age and are quite a close knit bunch of friends more than anything. All of our partners were invited so there was quite a few of us, we planned to meet in town and go Curling at a novelty games arena/bar type place. I stressed out trying to get there on time (as I’m renowned for being late and didn’t want to give them the satisfaction of making their remarks as usual), so me and Dom got a taxi. The taxi dropped us a few streets away due to roadworks, so there was a narrow path for us to go down to get to the venue…
We politely made our way around other pedestrians on the same path saying ‘sorry’, ‘excuse me’, ‘we’re running late’, etc. When eventually near our turning we cross a couple (man and woman) with a pram each, walking as slow as humanly possible. So, we farted around the woman and was trying to over take the man when the woman piped up and said ‘watch out love, there’s someone up your arse!’ Which I thought was a bit OTT, but ignored it, he looked around snd I said sorry as we passed him (and the pram). Then he makes some obscene comment like ‘For fuck’s sake!’.. despite me being polite. I looked back over my shoulder to give him eyes, and Dom told him where to go.
THEN! The woman started shouting her mouth off at us. So I stopped walking away. I turned around and shouted back at her. To my absolute fucking surprise- she completely abandoned he own baby in a pram – started walking towards me to square up. At this point she has no fucking idea what she’s got her self into (and in a completely different way, neither do I). Me being me will not submit or cower away. So I storm right up to her face shouting as I do -harnessing the combine disorders of BPD snd ADHD- and square right back up to her. Tensions were high. Before I knew it I was throwing punches and Dom was dragging me off. Oh yeah, I hadn’t mentioned this was in broad daylight at 3:30 in the afternoon. The bloke left his pram also, in order to drag me and this bitch apart – so both their babies were left in pram son the street unattended… very fucking responsible… I continued to shout abuse such as ‘you should never procreate!’.
Dom was so pissed off at me. He hardly spoke to me for the next 24 hours. Even in front of my family he kept his distance from me. I’ve been stable for literally years. I’m bound to have slip ups. I don’t think he realises how hard I find it to control myself.
To be honest, as someone who was recently considering identifying as the transgender ‘category’ of non-binary I have struggled with calling myself a feminist (a bit dumb I know). To me the movement should be about equal rights and treatment despite gender, not the stereotype of a group of women who hate on men. What makes someone a ‘Feminist’ has changed a lot over the years. So it requires me to do a lot more reading on the subject.
As for transgender feminism – fair! Trans women have every right to call themselves a feminist.
This post has been inspired by how I spent Sunday evening; I plucked my eyebrows, dermaplaned my face, showed and shaved everything, including my hairy legs (that I had been growing on purpose for many months), I exfoliated, moisturised and painted my nails. One BIG grooming session. Finally shaving my legs was a conscious decision. The novelty had worn off and I had begun to dislike the look of them. I initially started to let them grow after not liking the act of shaving combined with feeling like I only do it because I’ve been conditioned. But no, turns out I just like feeling clean, smooth and hairless.
I’ve spent the day listening to a playlist of the Punk sub genre Riot Grrrl, born through feminism. It’s all a bit fascinating, and I don’t really know where I’m going with this post. I just feel I’m on an educational journey of self discovery and reflection.
Dom and I argued on the weekend. We’d been out Saturday night, had a few drinks and actually a really nice time together, however when we got home he noticed I hadn’t done the washing up before we left. He was furious. It was like the straw that broke the camel’s back. He broke up with me over it. He said the words to end our relationship. 4 whole years, finished. Just like that. Over something as menial as the washing up.
We kind-of got over it and slept in the same bed afterwards, it was (but it wasn’t) all forgotten about the next morning. The argument lingered over us, although we both chose not to acknowledge it. It lasted for days, longer than the hangover from the alcohol consumed that night. Neither of us could focus at work, last night I couldn’t even sleep. I was ruminating on it all. Questioning if he actually loves me at all, or whether he just says the words ‘Love you’ automatically these days. I then questioned if he has ever loved me, or if he was/is just settling for less than he’s capable of getting from a partner. We had a pretty turbulent relationship from the get go, partly due to my BPD reactions to being in a romantic relationship, and partly due to both our mental health conditions to be honest, that and the stress/pressure of his academic studies… but we made it work, with a lot of hard work and patients – we manage.
Last night while I was lay in bed staring into the dark, questioning all things surrounding me and Dom, I found I started to not only question if he loves me – but if I love him… Questions like: am I just automatically saying the words these days? Did I ever love him? Or was I rebounding from the previous relationship I was in? Did I latch on to Dom through the fear of being alone and single in my early thirties? I then started to question how he makes me feel. Do I feel like an equal? Do I feel respected? The answer… really, is no. I feel like he is better than me… and I feel like he knows it. I even feel sometimes (like that night) he shows it.
Then I started to ask myself if I’m the one that deserves better? Someone who would show me more respect and better understanding… after the way he sometimes speaks to me.
Today is Wednesday and this morning I addressed the elephant in the room – the argument we had on Saturday night… The argument in which he broke up with me, over the washing up… He remembered it all, and admitted that he took it too far. He apologised, as did I. Him for making me sad and me for making him mad.
The way he talks to me when he snaps is not okay. It’s cruel, hurtful, disrespectful, spiteful, and demeaning. He’s never done it sober. But alcohol is a catalyst to feelings. I think he is under a lot of pressure with his studies right now and it’s forcing him to lash out, act out of character. Should I be worried? Think less about myself and my reactions to this behaviour and more about him? And the reason this all happened? He is clearly under a lot of stress. I just don’t know how to help or what to do about it.
What a difference a week makes. Last weekend I was begging for Dom to give me a chance to prove myself worthy of staying with. I’ve spent the week making changes and trying more, and my actions and apologies have payed off. I’m serious about being a better person, for Dom and myself. Yesterday I even liked myself a bit more. I really had let everything go and pretty much given up without realising it. Now I’m awake and aware and feeling alive again.
Over the weekend Dom nearly broke up with me… to be honest……… I don’t blame him.
There is so much I’m doing wrong: I don’t pull my weight around chores and house work, I never cook, barely ever wash up – don’t even know how to use the new washing machine, I drink alcohol at every given opportunity (to excess), I act without thinking about the consequences, I’m selfish, I don’t think about other people, I’m inconsiderate, I’m entitled and expect everything to be done for me and I rely entirely on other people to do everything. I am basically a dependant child, I never take responsibility for my actions, or admit to being wrong. I find it near impossible to apologise in a meaningful way, and worst of all I never change! I blame my mental illnesses for the way I act and react or don’t act, but there is more to it. I got lazy. I lost my drive, my will power… my determination. I lost myself. Relationships are a partnership, they take work. I’ve slacked off and jeopardised everything. I nearly lost Dom for fuck’s sake! The love of my life. All because I stopped trying, at life. I stopped putting effort in and became completely self absorbed. He has the patients of a fucking saint to put up with me being this horrible, and for so long! How he’s stayed with me though my shit I really don’t know.
I apologised for real today. I can see it all now. I took a long hard look at myself over the weekend, and I didn’t like what I saw. I feel like I have woken up for the first time in literally years. He’s right, it’s repeated behaviour. Why would he want to continue a life together being my mother, my carer, my fucking slave for God’s sake. It would not be fair.
The weekend was an eye opener. A wake up call. I know this is not who I am. I CAN change, for the better. I know I can. It’s going to take more than therapy, it’s going to have to be driven from within me.
I said “I’m nothing without him” and that’s got to change too. I need to be a someone, I need to have self respect, stand on my own two feet. We can lean on each other for support in times of need, but the poor guy has been carrying me!
Well no more. Today was a new day. A fresh start. I’ve started to make changes already. It helps that I can see clearly now. I think I definitely have an alcohol problem. I would even say… at this point I admit to being a functioning alcoholic. I haven’t touched a drop for two days now. I’m not blaming the alcohol, but it is a catalyst to a downward spiral.
I need to be alert to my behaviour, pay attention to other people, let myself feel instead of numbing out or getting bind drunk. I will change. I’m certain of it. Even if I need to re-read this post everyday for the next five years. I can’t go on mistreating Dom, and the people I love.
Maan, I can’t focus at all lately. It seems I did a good job last week to finish my targets at work and whatnot but now I’m completely spent! and my diet has slipped big time! Which is utterly stupid because I’ve just spent £115.00 on a diet/weight loss app… I’ve not told Dom… I’m drinking all the time too, which is a bad sign that there is something I’m not coping with in life. I think it’s falling behind at work if I’m honest with myself. With each day I get further and further behind being ‘on top of things’… it gets me down and feeling guilty as hell, so I deal with that by getting drunk, which makes it hard to wake up, which makes me late, which makes me have to pay for a taxi, which is a waste of money, and I had to get an overdraft this month because I can’t afford to live like this!
I have my mid-probation (3 months in the job) review on Friday. In some areas I’m doing great, and in others I’m atrocious. I have so much e-learning to do. Really you should do that in your first few weeks… I’m three months in… shit. It’s not just that. There’s other stuff. I get so tired, I sleep in and stuff, it’s so unprofessional. My favourite phrase in work when my incompetence starts appearing is “the cracks are starting to show”. To be fair, I’m severely mentally ill, every day is a fucking struggle! How I manage to just about function – I really don’t know.
I need a week out to get my head straight and then a week of just admin to catch up with everything… unfortunately it doesn’t work like that. Wahhh. Woe is me.
This month we were all set a target of 10 new registrations. I got 11… yes, that’s 110% Woop! In line for the prize for most registrations in September I think! Apparently the prize is to do with a team night out! Now, that sounds like my kinda prize! I’ve also written an article for world mental health day. I’ll probably post it on here on the day, because why not!
I got a hair cut today too, hence the new look. I fear I look a bit like a stereotypical lesbian, and a fat one at that! I don’t really mind, I’m just glad to finally get it cut! Was driving me mad!
I’m a bit proud and a bit ashamed… Proud because I got all those registrations, but ashamed because I am behind on logs, and it’s getting worse! I need to get back on top before I’m in over my head! I have my 3 month mid-probationary period review on Friday. I really don’t want to let my boss down. There are just not enough hours in the week when you have ADHD. I need to speak to her about this.
It’s Birmingham Pride on Saturday… I was thinking about writing something about myself and how I identify on social media – to get it all out there and help the fight against stigma, but I’m still not sure…
Sexuality: For many years I’ve identified as bisexual, but never really needed to ‘come out’ as such. I’ve never felt worthy of it being labelled snd public information. It’s always been assumed anyway, and has never really bothered me as my sexual preference is nobody’s business except mine. Doing a bit of research I think really I identify more as pan sexual, because I fall in love with people and their personalities, not physical bodies/attributes.
Identity: Recently I have been toying with identifying as non binary (not female or male). It’s been a bit of a rollercoaster in my mind, because although I feel way more comfortable being classed as both male and female, or neither (in the middle), that would mean I fall under the category as ‘Transgender’… I don’t feel like I am trans gender, because I don’t feel like I have had to transition. I have been in the middle of male and female my entire life. There was no revelation. I am who I am, and that’s that.
Sex: I was born female at birth, so have the adult woman body that comes with that. Just because I don’t fully identify as being female, I understand how I will be perceived according to my woman body’s shape and exterior. I am also very used to being called the pronouns she/her, as I’ve been a girl since I was born. As far as pronouns go, I do not want people to have to alter anything about how they refer to me, I don’t want to make things difficult, and I actually don’t care what you call me. I do not prefer to be called they/them, although if you did I’d appreciate the gesture.
It’s the in between of everything that makes me feel like a fraud and not worthy to ‘come out’ as a pan sexual non binary individual. I’m not one way or the other, and I’ve not had to transition. I’ve had it easy compared to a lot of the LGBTQ+ community. Where do I go from here?
Any advice is welcomed, my message box is always open. Hit me up.
I’m off sick guys, I have a chest infection. Went to the doctors today and they’ve prescribed me antibiotics. At least it’s not covid. I actually hate being off work, so I’ve been on my work laptop all day anyway doing admin bits and bobs… not even gonna get paid for it, but at least I haven’t fallen behind or been bored. My manager told me to ‘get off my emails and rest up’ lol, nice that she cares.
Work is going really well. I have my mid-probation supervision on Friday. Apart from not having completed my e-learning yet, I’m smashing it out of the park where supporting clients is concerned. My manager is super impressed. Feels good to have a purpose again. I take pride in the quality of support I provide and that feels pretty good too. You can totally tell the people who don’t give a shit about their job a mile off. I can’t imagine being employed to do a thing and then not doing it to the best of my ability. That’s mad to me. Maybe it’s because I’m a people-pleasing praise seeker desperate for approval and acceptance by anyone and everyone I come into contact with, or maybe I just like to be teachers pet. Whatever it is, it spurs me on to do a good job. I tell you, in this company it does not go unnoticed. Not like the company I worked for before where I was never praised, no matter how hard I worked – just punished for my lack of motivation and ever declining mental health… is it that much of a surprise that I was stressed and depressed??
It does not take a bloody genius to motivate a team. Positive reinforcement is the answer, and if improvements really need to be made then make the criticism constructive! My old manager was a bully on a power trip who delegated tasks so much that she had no work left to do herself! Then, in her boredom would choose people to pick on. She had different favourites and scapegoats each week. Unfair treatment is an understatement.
Now my new manager, she gets it! I feel like I could go to her with anything without feeling judged. She is my rock! Bloody love my new job!
When I’m not at work I’m bored. I need something to interest me but nothing does. Dom suggests a hobby – but they’re all just fads. I dunno if it’s ADHD related or what, but I’m lonely!
I find that I stray to the pub after work just to scroll through the contacts in my phone for someone to talk to, but none of them are contactable… mainly because I’m either waiting for them to reply to the last message I sent (I obvs can’t text consecutive messages, because That would just look needy and desperate), or they just haven’t even bothered to read or reply to my last message in the first place!!
The two ticks on WhatsApp are a dead giveaway…
God, it’s lame posting this. Where are real life people? Where are my friends???
When lockdown first happened I reached out to loads of people who I’d not spoken to in years. I felt more forced into isolation than ever before, and I’m quite a social person naturally, I just can’t keep hold of friends for some reason..? All of a sudden I was connected again! I felt revitalised, like I suddenly had more friends than I thought! They were all just a bit dusty on a shelf hidden away in the back of my brain somewhere. We had conversations over the phone, WhatsApp groups, and meet ups over Zoom (which seemed to be the new Skype). Lockdown was a bit of an excuse to do these things. Distance wasn’t a problem OR an excuse for anyone anymore because you could be bloody neighbours and still not be allowed to see each other face to face in real life. It was a weird time, filled with boredom, loneliness and fear, but also, hope, gratitude and strong emotional bonds.
Fast forward to lockdown lifting; The incredibly, idiotically named “Freedom Day”, where everyone was… (is..?) still scared about COVID killing people, but it’s not enough to keep us apart anymore… all so it may seem.
Personally, I feel lonely again. I’m seeing wAy more people face to face now, at my new job etc. than I have done for a very long time, but I’ve gone out of my way to make sure I continue to text and ‘check in’ on those people who I reconnected with at the start of lockdown. However, I’m not getting much in return… the conversations run dry, I get short answers, or no answers at all! I know people have their busy lives back, but so do I..? – I’m still making the effort… Friendship is supposed to be a two way thing. Where are the people texting and ‘checking in’ on me? Where are my texts out of the blue?
I swear, I scroll through my phone book these days and there are so few I would actually call a friend I can’t tell if it’s sad or scary.. maybe both…
I had a conversation about this with Dom not long ago. He notices when I get down and always asks about what is making me sad. when the answer is that I’m lonely and I don’t have any friends, it can get a bit awkward. Dom likes to be a problem solver and resolve my sadness with advice, but for this it’s tough… you can’t just magic up friends. You have to build on relationships with chosen people over a long time… not only is there the ‘growth period’ that is a blocker to having instant friends, but there is the question of where the hell do you find them, if you’re not at school, college or Uni..? those were my chances to build relationships that would last me through my boring adult/‘more mature’ years. But no, BPD prevented me from ever having healthy relationships with anyone. Thanks BPD… Then, there were the ones (mainly from Uni) that I did want to keep as forever friends… but I didn’t maintain it he relationships properly when I moved back to Birmingham… “Out of sight, out of mind”, thanks ADHD… so I feel like those relationships are now beyond repair, and I’ll never have that tight bond we once had ever again… Fuck.
I’ve even neglected my relationship with my brother… who for most of my life has been my best friend in the whole world. We have a closeness due to our family situation that not many people would be able to comprehend. Our family are the functioning fucked up, but however negative that sounds… there is SO much love for each other. Me, my Mom, my brother and my Dad.
Now of course I have Dom, the love of my life. I know this because he balances me out whist at the same time sticks by me and supports me through thick and thin. He has the patients of a saint, not many people would or could put up with my multitude of flaws (be that due to the personality disorder or various other factors). Dom saw something in me that was worth more than anything I could see in myself, he has spent the last four years trying to show me and to convince me to believe in myself, which I must admit is sinking in. He saw a future, he saw potential, he saw the ‘me’ beneath my collection of diagnoses and layers of medication. However dreamy snd romantic sounding this is it’s not been easy – Don made very clear from the start of our relationship that he wouldn’t be my carer, that I have to be able to take care of myself and prove that I can be independent… Which, I worked at, and eventually did. I feel like I’m still proving it, every day, but not to him, to myself. Now I want to succeed, I want to be stable and happy and one day raise a family with Dom. He gave me something to fight for. He was and always will be the light at the end of a very dark tunnel.
I love you Dominic Russ.
Talking about the future like this has made me realise, there are a small handful of people who I still want to be around with me on this journey. People I feel are drifting away. My brother being the main one. I have a few relationships that I need to focus on fixing, then I can think about new friends (if I need them). I’m nearly 33, where do you get new friends at this age anyway?
Those people I love, you know who you are (yet I very much doubt you know of the existence of this blog). I’m coming for you, I’ve not given up.
So, my boyfriend thinks he might have ADHD… part of me thinks.. is this just because I was diagnosed and he sees that meds I have now, help me concentrate on my job, so he wants the same to help him concentrate on his PhD..?
His PhD might I add, which he seems to be doing pretty okay with for someone with potential ADHD, it’s no easy subject – it is Bioinformatics… I would seriously dream of having his memory capacity/ability, and dedication/drive to do and finish tasks. He listens to history podcasts as a hobby any time he has to shower or wash up or do something menial, therefore he knows infinite details about the Roman Empire and it’s geography etc. (including dates and names of people and places).
Tomorrow (after a very long waiting list) he will be having the same appointment I had when I was diagnosed (as an adult) about two years ago. I took to this appointment school reports and my mom (in person) as someone who has known ‘the patient’ most of or all of their life. Dom can’t do this, so they will just be going by his word alone… Now… Dom, can be a bit of a hypochondriac when it comes to medical things. He is similar to my Dad in that way. I do not doubt he will say all the right words to get a diagnosis of ADHD (especially knowing me).
I personally do not believe for a second that he actually has ADHD… if they deem that he has, I will lose all faith in the system. However harsh that may seem.
A few weeks ago I was a bridesmaid at my cousin Rosie’s wedding. It was forecast to rain and was set to be an outdoorsy summer affair, but thankfully the weather held out all day and the celebrations were only dampened by my many tears during the ceremony! I am so strange when it comes to weddings of people close to me (and I guess even of those not so close to me – as I nearly cried at Dom’s friend’s wedding years ago), I just get really overcome with emotion. It’s confusing, I think it’s really lovely and cute and for some reason that brings me to tears… Yet, I play the clown in gatherings at funerals… in a desperate attempt to cheer people up…
Anyway, Rosie looked stunning, her and the groom looked like Britain’s next top models! Such a handsome couple. Dom and I unfortunately were not warned in time to congregate in the marquee for the speeches, so we missed a few minutes of the father of the bride speech talking to the woman selling craft ale round the corner, when we realised we had to be somewhere, we had to sneak in and found some seats that were quite far away. At the end of the groom’s speech he announced that the day previous they had discovered that Rosie is in fact pregnant with their first child!
I am so happy for them. They’ve been together for 10 years, and they are the perfect match. They will both make amazing parents.
There kind of is nothing I want more in this world than to have a baby. So of course I’m slightly envious, but not in a bad way. It’s just natural. Dom thinks we’re not ready… I am. I want a baby as soon as possible really. I hate the idea of leaving it too late. Or even not leaving it too late and being an old mom. Women only have a certain number of eggs, we’re not like men who are pretty much fertile until they’re dead! I’m 32 now.. rapidly approaching 33. Dom is still doing his PhD. Granted, it’s coming to an end, but then he wants a holiday and then he’ll have to get a job. Will we have to move? Who knows? When do we look into buying a house? All these things are factors. But, baby needs to be a factor somewhere too.
Rosie apologised to me sometime following the wedding that she didn’t warn me of the news before hand as she knows how triggering a pregnancy in the family can be for me (after the breakdown I had when I found out my other cousin Becky was pregnant – which was about two years ago now).
Total BPD reaction, to be so jealous that you can’t function. While at the same time knowing that they deserve all the happiness a child will bring to their family, and being happy for them. I’m trying so hard not to let it consume me this time. I’m trying to be happy with what I have right now. Dom sees my over the top emotional reactions and does not understand them. He thinks I’m being a baby. I really think he needs to research borderline personality disorder a bit more, because he just does not empathise with me when I need him to most.
He think’s I’m too immature and irresponsible right now. He want me to prove myself before we even think about it. He is a very pragmatic person. He has his routines that get him through, and that is that. I don’t have that. I try, but it does not come naturally to me. But spontaneous, idiosyncratic people can still be parents. I understand why he might want me to be stable for a prolonged period of time before we decide to procreate! I mean, that’s big! Bringing another life into the world. A little helpless slither of a human, to look after and mould into a functioning, well rounded person. We haven’t even had a pet!