Let’s talk about other people?!

Do you feel like people treat you differently when they know you suffer from mental health issues? I think that people do, at first, but then they forget so quickly, probably because it is not a visible illness to them. In some ways I feel that it should make a difference and in some ways I absolutely hate being singled out and hate being treated differently.
As an example, lack of control/ routine flares up my anxiety like a bitch. Working shifts can make this a tricky one, and sometimes I really struggle with it. But I am managing it. I plan ahead which makes it a little easier. My shifts are also set so I would be able to work out when I am working in 5 years time. So although I might be working at different times of the day or night depending on which week it is, I know what I am doing and when. It is part of my routine. 

I don’t like when things are sprung upon me. I don’t like being on standby for this exact reason. It means I could be called in to work at any time of any day or night. 3 AM – you have 1 hour to get to work. 5 PM Christmas day – you have 1 hour to get to work. You catch my drift. I hate it, I am not in control.

On an un-related note, I was asked to do something this morning. It was a simple task. I was given a blank map, and asked to fill out where places were. My geography is absolutely awful, always has been. It is not relevant to my job though. Well, it is a bit… but we have tools that enable us to do our jobs without knowing exactly where on the map the bloody Isle of Tiree is! I am perfectly able to do my job, and do it well, without this. I was embarrassed and completely humiliated. I said I didn’t want to do it and was told it was mandatory.

BULLSHIT! I am not at school.

My anxiety levels were already a little higher than they have been lately, but since this it has been building and building. I have been struggling to hold it together. 

If the person making me do that knew how it was making me feel, or how it would affect the rest of my day, would they enforce it? Would they push it?

On the other hand, if I am in a bad place and losing my shit on the inside and someone asks me if I am okay… NO IM NOT OKAY, IM NOT OKAY AT ALL, I COULDN’T BE FURTHER AWAY FROM OKAY. I AM LOSING MY SHIT AND THAT’S WHY I’M QUIET, OK HUN???!!!! I usually manage to squeak out ‘ I’m fine’ but sometimes it can tip me over the edge and the tears will just spill out and I will lose it. I don’t know why I get so teary, but it’s like the tears will sit in my eyes for ages and if someone notices it will definitely leak out. Once the tears start, they wont stop. 

So – Do I feel like people should treat me differently? Honestly, no. However, I do think that people need to be more aware of others, their feelings and how what they say or do could affect the other persons whole day.

What do you think?

As always, please leave a comment if you have any feedback. Also if you have any topic suggestions let me know! 

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Talk about it!

Okay – before I start writing this I need you to know that I am a total hypocrite!!!! Everything I am about to write is total crap because I can’t don’t follow my own advice.

 

How much better does it feel when you speak to someone about whatever it is that is flaring up your anxiety?? The answer is… DING DING DING – you guessed it, SOOO much better!

It is a huge weight being lifted off my chest. But the thought of speaking to someone will weigh me down for days, getting heavier and heavier. Why tho?! Cause I know that I will feel instant relief as soon as I start talking! As soon as I start opening up about whatever it is to Tiny (lets say in this case its work*) he will just start putting everything into perspective. Working through each ridiculous thought I’m having and squashing them. Once I am talking it through I wonder why I was ever worried to speak about it. Or it was such a simple fix in the first place that I needn’t have let it escalate in my head.

Once a thought has started to consume me, it takes over. And like I said it is really difficult to break out of that mind set once I am in it. If Tiny tries to approach me to shake me out of it, I am like a deer caught in the headlights. I totally cease up and it makes me more closed off and cold. It makes me even less likely to speak to him.

It needs to be on my terms! If not ‘I’m fine’ is the only answer I will give (cause obvz I am fine and Idonneedaman!!)

I am going through this exact thing right now, writing about it might sort me out or make me more relaxed. I am really struggling with the anxiety spews. The feeling of heartburn just won’t shake and had pretty much been a permanent feature of my life since the weekend. I know what is causing it and I know how to fix it but it is out with my control.

It is the lack of control over things that really flare up my stress and anxiety. Mindfulness and similar techniques don’t really work for me, well not for anxiety anyway. Laughing and sex. That’s for me. Is it weird that I just mentioned sex? I feel like I could probably write a whole post about that… Going for a walk or doing a little exercise will help as well I suppose.

It’s strange that when you are having an episode/flare up/whatever you want to call it that the things you know will make you feel better are the last things you want to do. I really don’t laugh or find anything funny. The thought of sex will turn me off and let’s not even think about exercise please – it’s just not happening!

***

So… I started working on this post a few days ago and in those few days my anxiety escalated until it leaked out! I lost control. I was at work, I realised I had done nothing but sit and stare at the screen for over an hour.

I knew I needed to speak to someone and get it out; I needed to break out of my head. But I was stuck. I couldn’t escape. My heart was beating out of my chest. My breathing became shallow. Nobody noticed.

I think that can be one of the hardest parts about mental health…It’s all in your bloody head! Unless you actually speak about it then nobody knows what is happening. If you broke your leg I’m pretty sure someone would notice, but if you were sat at your desk totally losing it inside your head people can’t tell anything is wrong.

I eventually barked at one of the managers that I needed to get away from my desk and that I was having an anxiety attack. I marched her off the floor and broke down when I stepped foot into the lift. I was sat on one of the sofas in the café in floods of tears speaking to a woman I barely know. I felt great. So relieved!

 

I have been pretty exhausted since all of this happened; it totally takes it out of you and makes you feel so drained. Luckily Tiny has been on hand to make the toast and beans for dinner! Tonight I will go home and I will do the housework. I will have a bath. I will read my book. I will make time for me. I absolutely will not let this anxiety win!!

 

*The way my mind works

So if something is bothering me at work, I won’t say anything to my manager because it is my problem. I don’t want to say anything because it would be much easier for them to move me into another job than put up with me and my problems. If I move to another job it means my wages will drop. If my wages drop then my Tiny will need to get a new or second job. If he doesn’t get a second job then we won’t be able to afford all of our bills. We won’t be able to save for a mortgage. We might need to move out of our house. We won’t get married and we won’t have babies because we won’t be able to afford any of it. AAAHHHH!!!

 

P.S. this post has been a bloody rollercoaster for me! But again if you have any feedback or suggestions please let me know!

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Let’s talk a little mental health… 

So…. This is my first ever blog post!

 

My name is Toni and I am 25. Welcome to my space, my posts might start off a bit of a ramble but stick with me and lets hope it gets better as time goes on. I have never been much of a writer, I have never kept a diary or anything like that and I have always found writing my thoughts and feelings a bit cringe (kind of like hearing your own voice on tape?).

 

So I suffer from anxiety and SAD, which is a dick… But I know that I’m really lucky as I have a great support network around me, my main stains are my boyfriend aka Tiny, my sissy as well as a few really close friends I could trust with my life.

 

Actually, that’s something I would like to add before I start – anxiety and depression are a cycle! Once I get into it, it’s impossible to break out of!! So lets say I haven’t seen my friends for a couple of weeks because of work (probably just laziness though!)… I might start to feel crappy. Once I start feeling down then the last thing I want ids to go out and see people cause who wants to be da party pooopa?? But then I will start feeling worse and isolate myself from people more. Then I start feeling so lethargic that I no longer want to do the things like cook or clean or paint things or make things. Once I am in deep it is horrible. I feel so suffocated and eventually end up having a breakdown. I would say I am better at dealing with it now than I was in the past and I usually can see it coming so my episodes don’t last as long, but they can still sneak up on ya like a plague in the night and catch you when you don’t expect it.

 

I don’t know if this is the way it works for everyone but this is my experience… I am actually finding this quite cathartic! Also – I totally went off track there, I was meant to be writing a bit of an introduction to me and my life…

 

So, yeh – I have suffered from SAD since I was about 19, and I can remember having plans with friends to go out… being ready to go and then hating my outfit, then feeling like shit and turning the lights off in the house and pretending I had fallen asleep (when in reality I was lying face down on the sofa sobbing). My friends at the time thought I fell asleep all the time, which I did quite a lot so the excuse made a lot of sense! I would say the worst one was the time I had planned an Ann Summers party, and the same thing happened. My friend was stuck with the Ann Summers rep for about an hour! Sorry LK! Is this a good way to find out the truth? Haha.

 

I had my first Anxiety attack last December, I was having an awful time at work and I was also moving house, everything was getting on top of me and two people spoke to me in the wrong way within an hour. I ended up being stuck in my car having a panic attack for the best part of an hour whilst someone was trying to coax me out and back into the office. I felt so sorry for them having to deal with what was unfolding, but I also needed to be somewhere I felt safe at the time and my car felt hella lot safer than work did.

 

I was off work for 3 months and, I would drive a different way home to avoid looking at it! I came back to work in March with a new attitude and although I do need to get away from shift work I am so much happier. There are definitely challenging days when I am worried I am going to have another break down but lets not even think of that!!

 

Don’t get me wrong I have a great time in life and this is such a small part of it, my brain just doesn’t want to play ball sometimes! I don’t really know what direction I want to take this blog, whether I use it to speak about a bit of everything or if I just speak about mental health. If you have any suggestions on what you think I should write any feedback will be appreciated!!

Toni x

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