Archive for January, 2009

Switchboards, Officialdom, Hangover and flatpack furniture

January 29, 2009

I drank far too much last night. I woke up this morning to find a trail of clothes in the hallway, a house stinking of sweet and sour sauce from my takeaway, and a grumpy cat wanting his dinner. It was a great night though and lovely to catch up with an old friend. We were celebrating my being discharged from the pdoc whom I saw for the final time yesterday. She’s happy for me to continue taking the meds and said I can ring for an appointment if I need to see her in the future.

Today I’d really like to go back to bed. Unfortunately Argos are delivering the results of my recent manic shopping spree, so I need to stay up until at least 6pm. I’ll bet they turn up at 5.59.pm. I’ve also lost my rag with the strange neighbour after he put yet another strange note in his window this morning. I’m ashamed to say that I called him a nutter, amongst other things. I’m going to blame that on the hangover though. Now I’m trying to get through to either the police or the council to update them on the situation. I keep being transferred through to a fax machine. I haven’t heard from them since I made the statement, despite being promised that they would keep me updated. Anyway, I thought I’d post  pics of some of the notes here to see what you think. Is he mad? Or just bad?

jopic1

jo3

Todays is apparantly an idea for a new type of board game. No photo for it as yet but this is what it says.

Game Show Time

Players: A victim
Conspirator
A policeman
Official

Components of Game
1) one council bin
2) three washing lines
3) A beware of the dog sign
4) the victim

Rules of Game

Place component on top of bin
Start
Form a circle around the bin and face inwards. Circle must contain equal numbers. Policeman and Official must face each other.

Are we ready?

Relatives must not face each other or the game is void. Now look down on the bin. Now look up at the person opposite only. Only the policeman and official can look at each other’s faces. Now look hard. What do you see.

Prize. An end to gossip and treachery against the victim.

 

Now I do understand the reference to the wheelie bin. We take turns to put everyones out for collection but don’t bother with his anymore so he has to put it out himself. However I wasn’t aware of a problem with washing lines, and no one has a beware of the dog sign.  I presume he has been visited recently by the police and estate officer, which is why they both get a mention. The relatives must mean his family. Perhaps he is also angry at them now?

I know the notes aren’t threatening but they do disturb me. After 8 years I know he’s not going to give up and I worry that things will escalate.

Ooh my flatpack shelves have arrived!

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Quick update

January 20, 2009

Well, as expected, Dad will have to start chemo at the beginning of Feb. He’ll stay overnight for one night in the first week, attend once as a day patient the second week, then have the third week off. Providing he can handle it, they’ll repeat the cycle three times. First of all though he needs to have tests to check his remaining kidney is functioning well enough to cope with the chemo. He is remarkably fit for a man in his seventies though, and has been out walking five miles a day in the last week, which is amazing given that it’s less than three months since his operation. If anyone can beat it he can.

The people who are running the research into BPD’ers with psychosis phoned me today. I’d forgotten to send in my consent form for them to look through my records. We’ve arranged for me to be interviewed on March 10th so that should be interesting. Fortunately the fact that I haven’t experienced any psychosis for several months doesn’t matter, as they want to hear about the last year. It all seems a bit hazy now though, so I’m not sure that I’ll be much use to them. Any research into BPD is useful though so I’m glad to be able to help. And lets face it, I’ll love the attention!

Just watched Obama’s inaugaration speech. Have to say that I was slightly disappointed. There wasn’t any stand out line for which he’ll be remembered, and more importantly, we still don’t know which puppy they’ve chosen! I liked the way he messed up his lines though. Perhaps a homage to Bush? Give him a week and the backstabbers will start circling.

Feeling like I’ve let the side down.

January 20, 2009

As mentioned in my previous post, I’ve been having some problems with a neighbour. It’s my opinion that he suffers from some sort of psychiatric problem, perhaps paranoia or maybe the early onset of dementia as he’s in his seventies. After years of unsociable behaviour towards myself and other people on the street, he has taken to posting notes up in his window about us. The lastest talks about his struggle to deal with the conspirators.

So the upshot is that I have spoken to the police this weekend and they will be visiting him shortly with a view to getting him assessed under the mental health act. However, they doubt the CMHT will agree to assess him because a) he hasn’t been charged with anything yet, and b) he isn’t violent. So that leaves them with the options of either arresting him for harrassment and then sectioning him once he’s outside his house (it can’t be done on his property) or contacting social services because he has a young daughter living with him.

I feel like I’m betraying one of my own kind. However unpleasant he is, if he is mentally ill he is like me. And I would hate it if someone tried to have me assessed against my will. There’s a kind of them and us attitude between the mentally ill  community and officialdom, and I don’t like going over to the other side. Also, I have friends who have suffered at the hands of overly zealous social workers. Friends who have lost access to their children because in the past they have had a breakdown. If my neighbour has managed to get through life without being picked up by the CMHT so far, am I really doing him a favour now? Let’s face it, an assessment doesn’t automatically mean he will get help. It might just make him even angrier to us all.

The police were meant to keep me updated and should have rung me yesterday, but so far I’ve heard nothing. I’m wondering if they’ve looked me up on their system and realised that I’m also flagged up as mental. In which case, anything I’ve told them will be taken with a pinch of salt. They may not mean to be prejudice but you tend to see that look in their eyes as soon as you disclose it. In my last neighbour dispute I had to agree to drop some of the charges because I was deemed unfit to give evidence in court. So a man who threatened me on almost a daily basis for two years, received a years probation for harrassment rather than a prison sentence for threats to kill.  This latest dispute is nowhere near as bad, yet I wonder if my past experience is impacting on it. I’m coming out fighting this time, rather than being a victim. Perhaps as a result I am being too hard on him. Damn I wish I’d never had group therapy. Decisions were so much easier before that lol.

Dad gets his scan results today, so I’m rather on edge. Another reason why I’ve spoken to the police perhaps. I needed to transfer my anger onto someone else.

Today is a good day though. A new president in the USA. A black president no less. A president who doesn’t make me cringe and turn over every time he speaks. Hopefully the mood of optimism and change will reach over to the UK too. We certainly need it.

neighbour from hell

January 15, 2009

I’ve had a lousy day today. Something happened which brought out all my paranoid feelings. I absolutely hate being the centre of attention, but as of this morning my name is on show to everyone on the street.

I have a problem neighbour. When I moved into the flat 8 years ago I became aware of an ongoing dispute between him and the nice couple who live above me. Joe seems to suffer from some sort of paranoia himself. I like to think the best of people so I try not to just put it down to him being a nasty piece of work. He beleives some money was stolen from his flat and this has grown into a major hate campaign against my other neighbours, who are absolutely not to blame. Every few weeks he starts hassling them again. Making nasty comments as they walk past. Threatening to take them to court. For the first five years I kept out of it, despite him constantly telling me they were evil. Then I came across him hurling abuse at a widowed pensioner and I stepped in to help her. Since then I have been added to the list of conspirators.

Joe plagues the police with lengthy, increasingly paranoid letters. He writes to our neighbours warning them about us. He shouts to me that I am a fat cow. For the most part I can laugh it off, because it has never turned violent. The police and local authority are also fully aware that his accusations are groundless.

But now he has taken to putting handmade posters in his window. Last week it proclaimed that any trouble would be returned tenfold. Today it was addressed to me and said:

To ***

When you arrived here you were brainwashed by people so desperate to hide the truth from you at all costs. Ask them about their strange behaviour many years before you came. Or better still, ask me. You will not find the truth such a big joke for you.

Now this has totally freaked me out. I hate to think of all the passers by who have read it. What will they think of me? I dread to think what will appear next time. I’ve had to ring the police and add it to the lengthy list of his harrassment. That means the police are going to come and see me tomorrow, which is a huge problem in itself. I can’t answer the door to my flat. I am phobic about letting people inside, and have to prepare for it in advance. The flat is also a bit of a tip. So now I have to stay up most of the night to make sure it is clean and tidy.

Also, what’s the point of complaining? I’ve been in a similiar situation at a previous address. That did go to court, and the druggie who had terrorised me for two years, posting porn through my door, slashing my clothes on the washing line, shouting that he was going to stab me, got away with a years probation because I was deemed to be too mentally ill to testify. Now I’m scared that the police will look me up and dismiss me as a serial complainer. Or if they do proceed with charges, he might escalate his campaign. I live alone on the ground floor and feel very wary. I’m sat here now listening out for every noise. I know that he isn’t anywhere near as bad as the last one but it’s bringing it all back.  And I’m frustrated at the way he makes me feel. This is the absolute last thing I needed to deal with this week!

And yet, I still have sympathy for the man. He must be deeply troubled and I wish he would get help. I’m hoping that the police can make him get a psychiatric assessment. I don’t know if that is within their powers though.

I just want him to take the poster down. Right now I want to throw a brick through that bloody window.

And………………relax.

January 14, 2009

Looks like my mood has stabilized again thank goodness. I slept through the day and woke feeling refreshed and calm for the first time in days. I did have a rather strange dream though, which featured an old therapist, some ex friends and a large shopping centre! I argued with everyone, became violent and was dragged off by the police. A very strange dream, but it looks like I worked all the anger out in it because none spilled over into waking hours.

I received a letter from the pct today, asking me to take part in some research into bpd and psychotic symptoms. Naturally it has made me reflect on the last year, in particular the strange thoughts and voices I was experiencing in Summer. I’m in two minds as to whether I should participate in the research. Am I really psychotic? The seroquel has removed whatever symptoms I had and with hindsight I wonder if they were just the product of an over active imagination. They do seem very distant. I do definately experience paranoia when I’m stressed and perhaps I then imagine weird and wonderful things which become true. Shadows in mirrors etc. Are the voices I hear just my low self esteem talking to me? I guess that at the basis of these thoughts is the fact that I feel like a fake. A wannabee patient who receives extra attention for those extra symptoms? But then I do vaguely remember the mocking voice which followed me round for weeks, telling me I was deformed, or that I was going to be arrested. I did hear it. But I always knew deep down that it was just my insecurities voicing themselves. It’s been a while since I’ve had any of the visual hallucinations and I’m so happy about that. Again though, I think they were more the release of angry feelings than actual psychosis. I just don’t like that word. Psychosis. When I read my medical notes they said ”no sign of mental illness” so why hadn’t the symptoms been picked up on over the years? I suppose because I kept quiet about them, fearful of a schizophrenia diagnosis. But surely someone would have noticed if they were real?

Arrgghhh I hate this self doubt. I wish doctors could just see inside our brains and tell us what was wrong, because I sure as hell don’t know.

Anyway, today I am calm and relaxed and happy. I’ll enjoy this current mood and try not to tie myself up in knots with something I can’t solve.

Shopping on no sleep. Not the best of ideas.

January 12, 2009

Oh bollocks I’ve done it again! I should never ever go near a shop when I’ve been awake all night and still don’t feel tired. It’s a basic no no for me. I only went in to post some parcels (presents to friends, because I’m Lady Bountiful when high) and came home £200 lighter. On the plus side I did open a savings account, but I also bought two massive jazz singer ornaments, which don’t go with anything in the house. I felt sorry for the shop lady because her shop was empty, so I coudln’t leave without spending some money. Also came home with three bracelets, some more jeans, a huuuuuge candle, and am already sat here thinking about what else I could get if I went back in.  In the last four days  I have also purchased a smoothie maker, 8 dvd’s, 40 bananas, a cd tower, one of those posh room fragrancers with twigs in, and some new boots.

I’m not in the slightest bit tired. I’m not diagnosed bi polar but I do get these occasional mixed episodes where I don’t sleep and usually shop or cut or give money away. Well I haven’t cut, and I’m determined not to. I’ve been giving money away to every charity collector or big issue seller I’ve come across in the last few days. Why do I never recognise the signs? Because I’m a fuckwit that’s why lol. Btw I’m in a swearing mood today. I love that word; fuckwit. I have this massive urge to hang out of the window and shout it to passers by.

Well at least the self pitying mood from last night has gone for now. Can’t wait to see what the next mood is going to be. It’s like playing on a slot machine. Ooh that reminds me. Must buy a lottery ticket too.

Can’t sleep and the monster wants to come out to play.

January 12, 2009

I didn’t expect to still be awake at 5:30am. For some reason the pills haven’t worked their magic tonight and I’ve spent the last few hours curled up on the sofa staring at the cushions, and latterly, laughing to myself whilst trying to remove the fixed grin on my face. I hate those mini highs, when my eyes feel like they’ve been glued together through lack of sleep, yet I can’t keep still and the thoughts are racing through my head. I’m still smiling now, though there is a maniacal edge to it. The me who is smiling is also the me who wants to slice into my skin just for the hell of it. She wants to dance round the room then go play on the railway line. Go down to a&e and chat up a few doctors. Bounce off a few walls. Sing out loud then stab a few pensioners. You get my drift. She’s not a particularly nice person.

I think there are at least two of us. The first is the gatekeeper. She takes her meds because she knows it’s the sensible thing to do. The grown up. The square. God I hate her, she’s so bloody boring. She reminds herself constantly of the coping strategies she has learnt in therapy. She plods along in her boring life, acheiving nothing apart from her most important job. Keeping the gate locked and the monster on the other side of it.

Because that’s the other me. The one who no one sees. The one who puts pictures into my mind of violence and rape and rage. I think she does it to taunt me. To remind me she is still there. She wants to be let loose to cause havoc. She is emotionally a child, but with the strength of ten men. All my life she has been lurking there in the background, grumbling and complaining and wanting to be set free. She’s never quite managed it. The boring me has usually gone to the doc and asked for more pills. Or taken an overdose to kill us both.

And then I suppose there is the me who is writing this down. The one who just wants it to be over. This constant fight between the other two. The one who wants to let the monster out, but only if I can disappear at the same time. That way I don’t have to take responsibility for the carnage. The relief of just letting fate take its course. Why am I taking pills to put off the inevitable? Surely therapy and meds are for people who can aim to lead decent lives. Why don’t the doctors and therapists see through my disguise to the evil underneath? If I was a decent person I would kill myself, rather than risk ever hurting someone. But I am a coward. I put it off day after day, living a pointless existence because I’m too scared to die and too scared to live. My head gets so full of thoughts I wish I could get my fingers under my skull and pull them out.

I don’t know why I feel like this tonight. It could be pms or it could be because my gp remarked that I’d been doing well for the last few months and therefore, I have to prove him wrong. It could be worry over my Dad but in that respects I am never happier than when involved in someone elses crisis. I take other people’s misery and use it to garner sympathy for myself. You know what I spend hours imagining these days? Getting cancer and all the attention that goes with it. I am one truly sick bitch.

Freezing, frantic and fat.

January 7, 2009

God I hate January. Especially January in northern England. In past years I’ve escaped to sunnier climes, but state benefits don’t stretch to a week drinking Ouzo and flirting with Greek waiters, so  coffee from a spotty youth in my local Mcdonalds will have to do. It’s been a strange start to the new year. I’ve been out and about a lot more than usual, due entirely to a mania induced shopping habit, and a refusal to miss even the slightest bargain. This week saw the final closure of Woolworths stores in the UK. A very sad time for the 30,000 staff who will start 2009 signing on at their local job centre. For me it was an opportunity to buy a lot of tat at 90% off. I now have enough lightbulbs to see me into the next century (5p each), which means I can’t OD for a while as I’d hate to waste them. Shopping in my three nearest woolies this week felt uncomfortably like grave robbing. With the news today that M&S are to close some of their stores too, I wonder what my high street will look like this time next year. Probably like that episode of the Simpsons where every store was a Starbucks. Hey ho, at least I’ll have somewhere to get my coffee. How this government still intends to get all us workshy off incapacity benefit and into jobs is beyond me. Would you hire a mad person if there were ten norms applying at the same time as her?

Speaking of benefits, it appears that the numpties at the DWP were wrong to send me the IB50 form. As a recipient of high rate care on DLA I am apparantly exempt from the PCA (personal capability assessment). Unfortunately the computer at my local job centre doesn’t know that I’m on DLA , so I have to wait for that computer to speak to another one and then someone will phone me to say I don’t need to fill in the form. They were meant to call me yesterday. Of course that didn’t happen. I hate answering my mobile if I can’t see who is ringing me, but not answering it could result in my benefits being suspended. Added to that is the dilemma that if I do answer it, some bright spark at the DLA office may see it as proof that I am not as mad as I used to be, and stop my benefits anyway. It’s a no win situation really, especially as the office I need to speak to doesn’t appear to have a phone, so I can’t ring them at a time that suits me. They really do make it easy for us don’t they?

Another phone call I need to make this week is to my pdoc. I believe I have an appointment with her at the end of Jan but can’t remember when. The appointment was made in October, so it’s not surprising that I’ve forgotten. Again, my turning up is probably a test of how capable I am lol. (I’m slightly paranoid this week in case you haven’t guessed). I’m just going there to have a chat about the meds, in particular how I’m getting on with the Quetiapine. Well the answer to that is not too bad. For the most part it has removed my angry moods and voices. However it only seems to work on a normal stress free day. If anything unusual occurs my anxiety levels spike again. I only need to look at the arrival of the IB50 form for that, as it brought back a lot of self harm urges and strangely, an urge to shave my head! However, I didn’t cut. Perhaps without the quetiapine I would have done. I’m also still waking up in a panic each day. I feel jittery until I take my first pill. It makes me feel like an addict and I hate being reliant on medication. Personally, I feel that it is the thought of hurting my dad which helps me behave at the moment. I’m not suicidal at the moment but I have to admit that dad has become my reason to continue. Without that link I think all my impulses would have free reign and that’s scary.  

I’m not sure that I am always honest on this blog. I was extremely chuffed to receive an award from that crazy lot over at mental nurse for best personality disorder blog. They mentioned my irreverent attitude. I’ve always used humour when talking about my mental health. Nothing bores me more than those people who are forever complaining about how bad their life is, how few friends they have, what a bad person they are etc. I have all the same thoughts as them. I know how much it hurts to be us. But I have a huge brick wall behind which I store all my emotions and it’s only when I’m at my worst that I let anyone look over it. I find other people’s emotions overwhelming. Boredom isn’t the right word really. The negativity scares me because it’s too close to home and I can’t cope with it. To be honest, I’ve been struggling this week. A mixture of high and low moods, several days without sleep, a need to get out of the house for hours each day, rather than be on my own. I’ve even lost my appetite, which is normally a sure sign that I’m close to breakdown. But this time I think I’m going to be ok. The meds are definately taking the edge off it. I just wish I could cope without them.

A quick update on Dad. He’s due to have a scan next week, after which he will see the consultant about whether or not he should have chemo. To look at him, you would think he was completely healthy. We went for a walk together and I was puffing away behind him, struggling to keep up. He has some problems with back pain, which may not be a good sign, but he’s determined to be positive. On the downside, he has bought the ugliest hat in ugly hat making history, in anticipation of losing his hair. Fingers crossed that he won’t need chemo, in which case his wife can burn it.

Hugs and best wishes to all my fellow bpd’ers. Here’s to the coming of spring. xx