Wednesday, 17 June 2015

I'd be tired of me, too.

Okay, so before all the weekend's drama with my mysterious fall (which we've decided was either caused by low oxygen or blood sugars)...

I had a slightly disastrous appointment with the mental health nurse last week.
I go into each appointment telling myself 'it can't be worse than the last one', but it is.

Mum still isn't even really talking about appointments or her absence from them. It's kind of settled now, but for the first three or four appointments, I had no idea if she was planning to come in or not until I was collected from the waiting room.

This time, after not having come in to a few, she actually stood up too.
     "Do you want mum to come in?"

I don't know if the dietician had time to call her or not, because she didn't seem to know exactly what was going on. Maybe it was a coincidence and she was trying to get me to talk by myself. Maybe I just threw mum a look when she stood up.

Anyway, I filled her in on the past week's drama with regards to mum not coming to appointments, despite the fact it's more stressful for me to not have her there. I didn't get the reaction I was expecting.

She thinks that mum is 'tired of me' after so long. No, 'exhausted'.
She even went on about how, as a parent, she'd be tired of it too.

She went on and gave this big speech about individualisation, that when we're 16-20 years old, we separate from our families and get our own life and friends become more important and you start figuring out who you are as a person.

I've been there, done that, then AN came along and I lost it all.
I had all of that.

But as soon as she said mum is tired, exhausted, of me, all that flashed in my head was the Horrible Psychiatrist, when he implied I was a burden and should 'release mum from her role as carer' so she can have her own life. 'Release', like I was holding her prisoner.

Why is it so terrible to need a carer past the age of 16?

Mum says it's not true, that she's not tired of me and I'm not a burden.
But would she even admit it if she did?

Most of the appointment I was just in tears. It was utterly pathetic.

She offered to ask mum to come in, or to talk to her one-on-one at the end. No. Nothing makes me more uncomfortable than a one-on-one with me out of the room.

     "Is it making you feel worse to come in?"
     "I don't know."
     "Do you feel like you've not got much choice?"
What a stupid question. Even after I started seeing her, my GP couldn't resist reminding me that she'd had me 'on contract' to start seeing the MHN before Easter, and late-May is not Easter.

She suggested maybe fortnightly appointments, but I just can't get through two weeks with zero chance of things getting better.

I was so distressed after that appointment, and I didn't know who else to talk to, so I made an appointment the next day to see the dietician.

Mum and I's relationship may be deteriorating. But the dietician and I's relationship is building back up just as quickly.

I was already on the verge of tears when she called me in, my name said with notable surprise.
     "I'm sorry," I said "I didn't know where else to go."
    "I figured, when I saw you had another appointment, that it was either something really good or really bad."

I told her about the appointment, what she'd said about mum being tired of me. It was nice to just talk to someone who actually gets it. I couldn't even remember anything else the MHN and I talked about. The dietician asked, but everything was just blank.

I apologized again for coming in. I know it was probably wrong of me, but I was desperate. But she said to come in any time, and no charge for today.

She walked me out to the waiting room, and mum was gone. She'd said she was popping around to the chemist, but she should've easily been back. This was not the day for being left alone in the world.

She walked me out to the car, which was unluckily parked down the street. Even walking 3 or 4 car spaces down the street is terrifying, let alone when I'm by myself.

She wasn't in the car. I ended up sitting with the dietician in her office for a few more minutes, until mum re-appeared and the girls at the desk told her where to find me.

The dietician had asked me to journal each day, just a short little something about what happened or how I'm feeling, and bring it in on Tuesday. Apart from the general fears of letting someone read my journal, I ended up spending all my time catch-up journalling about appointments and the fall.

And I did see her yesterday, black eye and all. Last Tuesday she gave me the goal of having just one supplement through the week. And I did - a 164 cal Ensure the night before I saw her again. Honestly, I'd rather just stick with the lower intake than tag on an extra supplement.

But now she's going away, and I won't see her for the next three weeks. I have one appointment with my GP, and whatever happens with the MHN, but I can't say I'm much looking forward to it.

There is a lot of tension at home, with this sudden change in dynamics with mum and appointments. It bubbles to the surface, threatening to explode whenever I have an appointment.

It's not worth it. I'm tired of crying. I'm shutting off.

My black eye started to come up yesterday, and the bruise on the bump the day before. I'm guessing tomorrow or Thursday will be the worst of it, but I'm doubtful it's going to be very photo-worthy. I'm still nursing a nasty headache. It wasn't too bad for days 2 & 3, but yesterday and today it's been back.

My appointments for the last week and a half (Tue 9th - Thu 18th) have looked like this:

GP   x2
Dietician   x3
MHN   x2
Weekend GP   x1
Ambos   x1

(+Pathology   x1)

There's still a lot to say, but this post is long enough, so I'll try to post again soon.



  1. When I have this unpleasant thoughts in my head, it's allright because I know it's a thing inside me. But when someone else says it out loud, it's painful. Sometimes I think that my family hates me, and when I'm fighting with my mum, and she says that it's better when I'm away, I really want to move out, to another country, and have a fresh start. Nothing is holding me back.
    I hope your thoughts will leave your head, and you'll feel better xx

  2. First off, I'm hugging you and never letting go!

    That's awful that the MHN would say that to you! It's one thing for you to think it, but to hear it out loud from someone who's supposed to be helping you is entirely different. I'm sorry the whole thing reminded you of the Horrible Psychiatrist- that's one of the last things you need!

    At least the dietician seems to have her head screwed on. And I'm glad that your relationship with her is improving. Hopefully the next few weeks won't be as bad... Hopefully mum will talk to you and give you some idea why she's acting the way she is.

    Love <3

  3. That was horrible for the nurse to say that, or at least to word it the way she did. I'm sure your mum is exhausted just like you are, and just like you she is probably tired of your health issues, but that DOES NOT mean she is tired OF YOU. You are her child no matter how old you get, and she loves you. I know people in their forties who still live with their parents because of mental and physical health issues, and their parents still take care of them. There is no shame in it, and you are not a burden. <3 <3 <3

    I'm glad your dietitian at least has some sense. It's so tough to find decent doctors/nurses/etc, but you've found a really good one in her.

  4. I struggled over whether or not to say anything as I really wanted to but in the end I decided to. I hope that you know everything I say to you is not to sound harsher than the others. I come from the more blunt cognitive behavioral orientation so I know it can sound that way at times. Plus, in my real life I'm the painfully honest friend so what I say I say because I care for you and I'm the devil's advocate for things because I'm afraid that I myself don't see things as they are as a result of having anxiety.

    I've been on both sides now, both client and now working in the mental health field. I think K summed up well how it is for people and it's really questionable, the lady's method of conveying that to you. I know that family is often times a safer place to be crazy or sad and anything else we hide from others because they tend to loves us more intensely and unconditionally than others but I've been in a position where I was a care giver of sort to my mother who had destructive BPD tendencies. Even when when she wasn't destructive, her moods were all over the place and I suffered as a result. It's a lot for someone to take on and the dangers of a close family member caring for someone with mental illness is codependency and burnout and a bunch of other less pleasant things to consider. I think as people we have this inheritant need to grow and explore and when that is taken away it can affect more than just the suffering individual. What I'm wondering is if it hurts because it's something you've already thought and by having someone say this it confirms a fear? Does it confirm those negative messages that you tell yourself or jeopardize the small "safe" space you've created? If she is distancing herself for reasons that are similar or exactly as that lady said, can you be okay with it and say that for now you have to respect your mom's mental health and well being to give her that space? I know from experience that abuse and trauma deeply effect people. I've been afraid to take opportunities or belive in myself and some days I've stayed at home watching TV all day and cancelling plans because it's too much but I regret that because that's more power that person had than they shouldn't. It's allowing them to still control and cause fear when there is no longer a danger. The world is scary. Being independent is scary. They make tons of humorous articles on how it feels to be in our 20s and growing up because we all feel that way but it's even harder with a mental illness.

    Listen, we can't control everything in life and we can't avoid pain and paid caused by others. All we can do is press forward and try our very best. Do some introspection and if what you find aligns with what she said, have a discussion with your mom and really listen to her. I'm sure she doesn't want to upset you but examine how you fit into the situation and what you can do to make things better for both yourself and your family in a positive way. I believe in you and you're a beautiful person.

  5. okay, i'm going to tell you before i read any of this post that i love you so so much and that if there's anything i said that offended you - you know the drill, not on purpose. i post every comment with the best intentions and only hope they make you feel a little better.

    damned MHN. just dump her. i swear i tell you - every time you mention her, my blood boils.

    the first time i heard it, i wanted to punch her in the face. i seriously do. you just don't say that to someone. nope. no. never. not allowed. YOU DON'T SAY THAT TO ANYONE. especially if you know how bad our head twists things around anyway.

    it isn't terrible to need a carer. honestly, it's Mum's role to do what she does to ensure that her child is fine. and if her child is not fine, it is her role to take care of that child. the only thing you have to do is appreciate the fact that she is there. you are her child. you deserve her trust and love, and nobody has a right to tell you that you don't deserve her support or her love or the amount of time she invests in you. in fact, i am glad you at least have her to lean back on because you have very little on its own.

    i'm actually a little sad Mum doesn't go into appointments because she must know how bad it can get with you at times. i think as Mich said, it can be exhausting for her too. obviously not as much as for you. you're the one that is suffering so much with this. God knows i feel so sad to see that you are in the situation you are and you are brave for keeping it together (it might not feel like it, but you have done so many things that made me respect you as you are.)

    when you flip situations around, you'd see it too, sweetie. if this was your child, you wouldn't think them a burden or that you're tired of them. this woman spent a lot of years with you as a baby, taking care of you 24/7. she won't get tired of you. you are not a burden to her. she loves you and she expresses it in ways she thinks shows it more than anything. for you, this might not be as obvious. <3

    i think the dietitian is actually trying to make up from the scale incident a lot more than i've bargained for. on any case, i'm just glad you had someone to talk to. i'd hate to think that you had nobody to turn to. you need to breathe a little when things are so suffocating. i'm glad you got that small space, my sweetness.

    God, this week must've been so tiring. just reading it made me want to fall asleep. i'd rather have several Monday's instead for many weeks (our Monday is the second day of the working week and for my uni, it usually means 'cram as much shit into your schedule as possible' day so sometimes, i am there from 8am to 6:30pm. my uni is about 1hr away from my house if i have a really good driver. if not, then i'd need to be up at 6 to get to uni at 8.)

    i love you a lot. i hope you're feeling a little better. i hope you get a bit more space to breathe.

    -Sam Lupin

  6. I think Eve's comment said what I was thinking and expressed it better than I ever could. I'm in a similar boat myself, people withdrawing support and distancing themselves because I'm difficult and my stuff affects their own mental health too. It's hard. It also makes us harder on ourselves, I find it tends to make me worse because I beat myself up over it and use harmful behaviours which drives people away more. Vicious circle...

    I've been told to take harsh things professionals say as straight questions and statements, and try not to bring too much of my own stuff to it. If what she said confirmed your fears then it would probably hurt all the more. I'm sure she wouldn't have meant to hurt you, I hope not anyway. Try not to take it too personally.

    I'm glad your dietician was supportive and you were able to see her. She sounds lovely.

    Maybe you need to give your mum a bit of space, you know she loves you and clearly cares about you a great deal. These things can take time. Be patient with her, talk to her and listen to what she has to say. Just remember, we can't control other people but we can control ourselves and our own actions. It's tough, and a lot easier said than done, but it makes dealing with other easier, if that makes sense.

    Hope my ramblings made some kind of sense and don't come across too harsh.

    I haven't commented for a while, but I still read, and I'm rooting for you.


  7. Wow, I can't believe someone who is supposed to be a mental health professional would say something so awful and uncalled for to you. It makes me extremely mad. She should honestly lose her job! Like we feel bad enough without someone else adding to our shame, guilt and low self-value. Is there any way to get a different one? I just know I'd never be comfortable with that person ever again.

    Plus, mother's are supposed to be mother's regardless of what age we are. I don't know how it is there, but most people here under 25 still live at home while they're in school or whatever. So the fact that people think your mom shouldn't have to care for you is beyond me. I mean, I could MAYBE see if you were perfectly well how it might be unfair, but considering your not, I don't understand. I feel guilty about it too, because after my addiction and bulimia took over, I now need more care from my mom. I'm 23 so I feel like a burden on my own, having to move back in with her while I get better. But she often says she's my mother and that's what mother's are supposed to do. So to answer your question, no it's not bad at all do need a caregiver past 16. It's not even wrong to need one past 20!

    I feel a lot of what she said feeds into the stigma of mental health too. Because if you had cancer NOBODY would dare say your mom's getting tired of you. What a terrible person to say that to you. I'm sorry you have to deal with that. I hope you don't take it to heart to much. Your mom is lucky to have you in her life.

    Stay strong & hang in there hun!

    Much love, xx

  8. Struggling with words right now but just want you to know I'm here for you, thinking of you, wishing you well xxxxxxxxxxxxx

  9. Talk about a sucker punch. I am way older than you and I still need a carer/s. It's no fun in any way being dependent on someone, but that's where things lie and I'm just lucky not being alone in this shit pile called life. If they - he, her - were tired of me, they would say so and I think your mother would to. Some people do love us till the end and will be there for us.