Self Injury Awareness Day


March 1, 2013, is Self Injury Awareness Day. What is it, you may be asking yourself?

For those of us with mental illness, March 1, 2013, is a day to call attention to the disturbing number of people who deliberately harm their bodies in an attempt to numb emotional stress. 

Self-injury (SI) can range from cutting, burning or hitting oneself to simply picking at skin, pulling hair or pinching. At its most extreme, SI can lead to bone-breaking and other more serious injuries. For me it is an eating disorder. 
 
I don’t know the statistical data as to how many people do self harm, what I can say is that those that have self harmed will do so again.

Self Harming is confusing to many, often I have been asked “So why do you self harm?”

The easy answer for me is to have some type of control of my body, my emotions, my life. Yet some have said its because of wanting attention. Calling attention to myself is not what self harming is about for me. 

Self Harming may be more about letting the pain they feel inside themselves. It is called Emotional Regulation, meaning to feel better or calm down when their emotions are high.

It doesn’t make sense does it? To inflict pain in order to let pain out. Yet, there are reasons why we do it: 

  1. It distracts from emotional pain and calms overwhelmingly intense feelings
  2.  
    It gives a sense of control and distracts from painful memories or disturbing thoughts
  3.  
    It’s a way to express things they can’t put into words or can’t sort out in their own mind

     *excerpt taken from http://www.self.com/blogs/flash/2011/03/its-self-injury-awareness-day-wh.html*

What should you do if you learn someone you care about is self harming? 

  1. Recognize that self harming is very serious and needs to be addressed.
  2. You are not a therapist, but letting your loved one or friend know you care about them and want to help them get professional help.
  3. Reassure your loved one or friend that you can see how much pain they are in and want to see them happy again.

Now that you are aware of your loved one or friend’s self harming, help them find a therapist who understands and has the skills to deal with someone who self harms. This is very important because, as I have learned, not every doctor is qualified to address this behavior. 

I am attaching the S.A.F.E.(Self Abuse Finally Ends) link. http://www.selfinjury.com/referrals/therapists/ .  Please click on it if you are needing some support. 

24 Hour National Crisis Lines

800-273-TALK (8255) www.nmha.org
800-SUICIDE (784-2433) National Hopeline Network
800-334-HELP (4357)
800-799-SAFE (7233) Domestic Violence Hotline
866-4-U-Trevor – for GLBTQ youth (www.thetrevorproject.org)
800-656-HOPE (4679)  RAINN – Rape, Abuse and Incest National Network
800-799-4889 Deaf Hotline

– See more at: http://www.selfinjury.com/referrals/therapists/#sthash.0pochVlx.dpuf

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Anti Bullying Day 2013


Today is Anti Bullying Day, it is the last Wednesday of February in Canada. It is the sixth anniversary of its commence which originally started as a protest against a bullying incident at a Nova Scotia high school (Central Kings Rural High School).

The original event was organized by David Shepherd, and Travis Price of Berwick, Nova Scotia, who bought and distributed 50 pink shirts after a male ninth grade student was bullied for wearing a pink shirt during the first day of school. [1]

In 2008, Premier of British ColumbiaGordon Campbell proclaimed February 27 to be the provincial anti-bullying day.[2] It was then celebrated on February 25 in 2009. In 2009, the boys and girls club work on pink T-shirts that say “Bullying Stops Here.” and “Pink Shirt Day” for Anti-Bullying Day.[3]

information taken from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anti-Bullying_Day.

I have been bullied as have many people. Being adult having a mental illness does not change that fact either. I have often felt people try to bully because they feel my mental illness inhibits what I would say or not say back to them. Rather for me, I actually fight back, because it triggers my rage issues. 

So please take a moment and wear PINK, you may just save someone’s life. Image

 

Personality Traits and Jodi Arias


I’ve been following the current trial of Jodi Arias, for those who aren’t familiar with this case, check out this link http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-504083_162-57564785-504083/meeting-jodi-arias-first-impressions-never-lie-or-do-they/

There are forums on Facebook and people have been blogging on her case as well.

I have been following this blogger lala1966 and today’s blog really nailed it for me as to the best way to describe what I see of this woman and the death of Travis Alexander http://carlarenee45.wordpress.com/2013/02/21/i-have-no-memory-of-stabbing-travis/.

The other thing that has surfaced for me, is the similar behaviorial triats I see in Jodi Arias and myself. I’m sure others who have been abused or have a mental illness may feel some similarity as well. However, I don’t like how she appears to have gone through abusive relationships if in fact she hasn’t. I have, more than once, and it is no walk in the park! I have no doubt she is a sociopath and narcissist. But I also see what appears to be borderline personality traits.

I know for me emotionally, I have the ability to shut down all emotion when triggered into an altercation with someone. My therapist has seen it first hand. Yet, I have compassion for others and animals, whereas the defendant, Jodi Arias, doesn’t appear to show emotion, UNLESS it is in regards to herself.

For me, emotionally, a long time ago I remember what it was like to feel tears and feel sad about stuff. Now I feel stuff inside that feels like it is boiling and wants to come out but doesn’t. When I watch Jodi and the tears roll down her face, I also see how quickly they go away and hardly a sniffle or plugged nose in catching her breath. That I do find uncomfortable. I find it uncomfortable because I can’t imagine showing emotions such as crying at any level and not having some residual appearance as a result of crying. Red eyes, puffy eyes, stuffy nose, flushed face. She doesn’t show any of that!

I have realized one thing though, that my passion for the law still does exist. I’ve not worked in a legal office for about 10 years now and had given it up for various personal reasons. Yet, I watch this trial, as I have with other trials and the desire is still present! This actually excited me.

I’ve felt stripped of not knowing “who I am”. That is something BPD does want to strip from you. The ability to know who you are, something I am in the process of learning. So to see that I am intrigued and feel passion for a career I loved so much, reminds me that it is a piece of who I am. A legal secretary. I doubt I will go back to the field because you now have to go back to college to ascertain a legal certificate, back when I was a graduate from high school, a diploma was all you required. Mind you, I would like to feel confident in giving myself some type of permission to socialize, let alone going to work. I’ve not had the best work history, the longest I ever worked was 2 1/2 years and that was at my first legal secretary job, fresh out of high school.

Not sure how I feel about posting what I feel are my similarities to a woman who is on the stand for stabbing her boyfriend/lover 29 times, nearly decapitating him and then shooting him. Makes me wonder if I would have ever resorted to that kind of behavior had I not gotten treatment.

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Stuck Feelings


I woke up yesterday morning feeling like I could cry. I had a dream of a dog I helped rescue a couple of months back that she had passed away. Scary thing is, I’ve not thought of she and her daughter (Syndey is about 2 and Annie is about 12 years old) for a little bit now, but I do remember being told that mama Annie didn’t have as long as she was a senior and she has some major issues with her.

This thought has been gnawing at me. I don’t know why the dream showed me this message. This isn’t the first time I’ve had messages come to me in a dream. I know I have a gift, and I do tune into it when it gives me messages like this. I had one recently about one of my own dogs, Lucy, being run over and she died.

Yet, yesterday and today, I have felt on edge, emotions near the surface but nothing comes out of me; well other than being bitchy and snippy. I have been tired because I keep waking up in the night. Its either hot flashes, or I am awakened by a soft tongue of one of my dogs letting me know they want something.

I feel anxious and very nervous. I saw on a DBT forum on Facebook of another person who has been feeling rather on edge herself. She however, says it is the time of year for her.  For me, I suppose it “could” be a part of that, but I suspect it goes deeper.

Recently my therapist and I were conversing over another topic and she said that only I can give myself permission to do something, so why do I think I can’t have permission to do “x”?

The first answer that came to me was I didn’t deserve to. The second was I don’t know any other way of thinking. She replied that this thinking hasn’t helped me has it? I replied, no it hadn’t, but I’m too scared to even step outside of that. The “what if’s” come piling in my head. “what if” I accept that my body won’t go back to a healthy weight? “what if” I accept that I deserve to feel happiness?

The only emotions I feel instantly, even while typing this is panic and fear.  I panic because the very thought of thinking I deserve better emotionally, doesn’t even make sense in my head.

Maybe I’m just not ready to step outside the box? Maybe that’s where the stuck emotions come from? I do know what it feels like to release very intense emotions, one time it happened in a hospital program I was in, and the reenactment of my life story. I was given a nerf bat and as we reenacted a pivotal moment in my life, the rage that started to build and literally spew from me and out to the bat as I literally belted anything that wasn’t sat on. I remember feeling exhausted and cried.

The second time I ever felt like that was about 5 years ago when my ex moved in his old flame into our home. He went cold emotionally and I remember bending down and had this feeling in the pit of my stomach; like the proverbial volcano.  From the balls of my feet, right up through and out of my mouth, I screamed and cried, everything that had ever been in our relationship spewed out of me. I remember at one point, grabbing a cast iron sign that hung at the entrance to our home. “She” had put it up, with their last names. This thing was heavy! Yet, I grabbed it off the post, carried it (albeit wobbly) and threw it as hard as I could! I know if I wasn’t in that rageful moment, there is no way I could have lifted it, let alone thrown it.

I have always said that the emotions scared me and I didn’t want to be like that. So perhaps this is why my emotions are stuck inside of me?

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Shame and how it robs me


I am working hard on myself. All areas of my life. Some days kick my ass hard core, some days I can handle not too bad. 

I’m working on my physical shape, working on my inner self, both are starting to show the results of hard work, to which I am greatful for. 

Yet, my boyfriend and I have been invited out to see friends, and I have no interest in going. I don’t get it. So I have told him to go without me. 

I don’t know how to look past the shame within me at my core. I don’t feel sexy, I don’t feel attractive. I still can’t look at myself in the mirror from my neck down.  I know that my boyfriend says people miss me and I’m sure they do, however, I just can’t seem to give myself permission to go to places where friends will be. 

I can give myself permission to go to therapy, to go to the gym, to the grocery store, but I can’t give myself permission to socialize? 

Shame, it has me really confused.

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a story of determination and strength. Thank you!!

She's Losing It!

“My son was five weeks old when my legs gave out.  We were at the hospital for his five week old well baby check-up when I collapsed in the hospital and dropped my baby on the floor.  My legs gave out and I couldn’t pick up my son.  That was my first sign of  Chiari Malformation.”

My jaw dropped open, a vivid picture in my mind of the baby dropping.  He’s fine – he’s seven years old now.  But my friend, Kalyn Blacklock, is not.  She has Type 2 Chiari Malformation, a rare disease.  Her doctor gave her five years to live; that was two years ago.

Kalyn is a little spitfire, barely five feet tall and 98 pounds soaking wet, and she is on my bodybuilding team.  Tattoos cover her shoulders and arms and she only has a little bit of hair she keeps in a ponytail at the…

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Menopause and BPD


If you experience hot flashes, night sweats, cravings for sweets and carbohydrates, then you will understand what I am talking about. Last night I had one of the most terrible of sleeps!  I am simply exhausted! I have become aware that in feeling this way, I am hyper critical of myself; The negative voices are in full stream today!

I googled the foods I ate yesterday to see if I can figure out what was eaten that triggered such a bad night. So far I have found caffeine the most. Now, I usually have red rose tea or herbal tea. Yesterday I had probably about 3 cups of a Roobios tea which i really like a lot. I also had nuts and lately I have noticed a slight allergy reaction but it is a matter of now trying to figure out which nuts are causing me grief, because almonds and cashews don’t bother me.

I haven’t come to any solid conclusion, other than reading that soy and tofu are highly recommended but I’ve also read that soy is a cancer risk so there goes that idea!

This does nothing to help my BPD, I’m already critical of my body with my ED, throw in a bad night of sleep and its like I am in hyper drive of crap all day!

Can’t wait til I can go to Zumba tonight and forget all of this!