Thursday, March 31, 2011

Things I learned in the Psych Ward (and the ER):

The ER:
Charcoal tastes like extra thick Pepto-Bismol times 100.

Slapping is a medical procedure.

It is impossible to walk when you’ve taken 50 sleeping pills and 30+ sedatives.

You will also have almost no memory for three days after overdosing on said pills.

Hospitals no longer pump stomachs.

I am excellent at escaping restraints even while unconscious.  The nurses called me Houdini.

Smelling salts should be renamed “Omg WTF was that?” salts.

The Psych hospital:
Payphones still exist.

Psych hospitals are like vampires.  They are hungry for your blood.  And whatever creature that is after your urine.

You can get your foot x-rayed directly on your bed. 

I love Cherry Laffy Taffy but I hate Sparkle Cherry Laffy Taffy.

You can have an old style Walkman radio but NOT an iPod. 

Ping Pong is considered therapy.

I like playing with clay but it doesn’t make me not want to die.

You can make whatever you want with the clay but you cannot keep it because it can be used as a weapon or cut yourself with it when it dries.

People make strange faces when they are doing Thai chi.

There is surprisingly very little psychotherapy in a psych hospital. 

It’s all about the meds.

You cannot have a hardcover book but you can have heeled boots as long as they don't have laces.

Clothing is a privilege, not a right.

You can have soft bristle hairbrush but not a hard bristle hair brush.  They give you a toothbrush with a pointy stem.

Shampoo, conditioner, and body wash come in an all in one.  I had no idea.

There are more smoke breaks than times you can use the telephone.

You can call whoever you want on the payphone but you can never use your own cell phone.

You cannot order Pizza.

The patients are pretty normal, even the crazy ones, well maybe not.

The crazy children in the next ward however, are INSANE.

I came up with three ways I could still kill myself despite all the safety precautions and supervision.

It may be the only place where showering might make you dirtier.

The nurses are more neurotic than the patients.

You cannot have anything with a string—including tampons.

There is absolutely no structure or anything to do.

You can watch an extremely violent movie where a guy is decapitated but you cannot listen to music with cursing or sexual innuendo. 

Psych patients LOVE the game Connect Four.

The nurses will call your name so many times it seems like they are afraid you might forget it. 

It is possible to write in the dark.  I wrote this in the dark.

You have to make an appointment to shave, and to shower.

A “fresh air” break and a “smoke” break are the same thing.

You can wear pajamas and socks all day long, but no shoe strings.

A messy unmade bed= unstable.  A tidy nicely made bed= cured!

You can take your sleeping pills with coffee without question.

Under wire bras are dangerous.

Some people love me.

I don’t want to die.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Update on Campbell

This is Campbell's girlfriend. She asked that I update her blog to let everyone know what's going on. On Friday evening, she overdosed on sleeping pills, and I had to call 911 to take her to the hospital. She is ok physically, but they admitted her into the psychiatric hospital, and I am not sure when she will be released. I will provide more updates once I receive more information.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Far far away

When I as 9 years old a psychiatrist asked me if there was anything I wished for. I think she meant to ask if there were any kind of toys that I wanted, but I took the question differently. “I wish I was a bird,” I said. “And why do you want to be a bird?” She seemed intrigued. “So I can fly far far away and nobody can ever find me.” She didn’t say anything as she took notes in a folder. Not much has changed. I’m twenty-something and I still wish I could disappear. I still wish I could fly far far away and never stop. At least then it wouldn’t matter that I never had a family. I could spend my life traveling the world, seeing things people have never seen. I can say hi to people as I pass through so that I will never get lonely, but I’ll never stay anywhere long enough to get attached to people. I’ll never stay long enough for someone to decide they don’t want me. I’ll never stay long enough for someone to dump me.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Forks, earlobs, and my blog


Nothing can make a girl feel better quite like brand new 3mm white gold topaz earrings can.  I forgot I ordered them two months ago and they just came in the mail today.  Well actually, I just checked the mail today and there they were!  They sound fancier than they really are.  They were only 25 bucks on ebay, but I love them.  They are probably the nicest jewelry I have ever had.  I had to get my second holes in my ears re-pierced a while ago because the backs had closed up a little bit.  I stupidly let the piercer put in those little locking studs into my ears thinking it would be safer.  I was not able to get the stupid piercing studs out of my ears for the longest time but I was determined to put these shiny new blue studs in my ears.  I gathered some q-tips, paper towels, bactine, and two forks.  Yes, two small forks.  I took one fork and slide my earring through two of the prongs and then took the other fork and stuck two prongs through the loops in the back.  I slowly pulled up and out on each fork and POP.  Success!  I cleaned my new earring and stuck it in my ear and then repeated the steps for the other ear.  My girlfriend is highly amused that I used utensils to remove stuck earrings.  Now my ears shine and sparkle!

The last few days I have received some really cruel emails.  They really hurt because deep down the things they told me are everything I fear about myself.  I fear that I am worthless, a fraud, a loser, that I deserve to die.  I feel like my life is a mistake and no one will ever love me.  Someone emailed that that they thought my mother was right about something being wrong with me and that the world would be better off if I just killed myself.  I received 9 emails in total from 9 different people on top of the not so nice comments on my blog and the not so nice blog entries written about me.  I was freaked out, scared, and really hurt that so many people seem to be against me.  For some reason the hurtful comments make a bigger impact than the dozens of sweet support comments.  It should be the other way around.

I literally spent two days in bed, only getting out when my girlfriend forced me to walk my dogs or eat.  I was really down on myself thinking maybe the negative people were right about me and maybe I am a copycat and a fraud but I've gone back through most of my entries and I know everything I have written is from my own life.  The dialog style I use is also widely used elsewhere all over the internet.  I no longer feel bad about my blog.  I will not stop writing my blog just because some people cannot handle it.  This blog is for me.  This blog is for other foster children, past and present.  The more voices of former foster children the better.  I want everyone to know what really happens to children today, even if some people refuse to believe it.  I want people to know.  I want people to change it.  It's too late for me but it's not too late for the little girls and boys in foster care this very minute.  It's not too late to change their lives.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

I'm sorry

If my style in this blog resembles someone elses style in any way, it was a total accident.  It was not intentional.  As someone else wrote it's impossible not to be influenced by things you read, consciously or subconsciously.

The way I write dialogue in my blog does seem to be similar to someone else's, but I went to film school and the way I write dialogue has always been in a very similar format.  I assure you it was not intentional, nor vindictive.  I'm not trying to be anyone else.  I'm not trying to take attention away from anyone else.  I'm not trying to copy anyone else.  But I guess it's possible that maybe unconsciously I wanted to be connected to someone who understands what I went through.

The subject of my blog reflects that of my life.  I write about my time in foster care, my mother, my time in the middle east, my brothers and sisters.  It's all true.  All of it.  I'm not claiming to be anything I am not. 

I really did grow up in foster care.
I really did live in 42 placements from the age of 0-18.
I never was adopted.
I really was raped by my foster dad for 3 years.
I really tried to kill myself when I was 12, 14, and 15.
I really went mute for a year when I was 12.
I really was molested by my step father in middle east.
I really was rejected by families over and over again.
I really did age out of foster care my senior year of high school with absolutely no one and lived in my car and couches until I went to college.
I really did go to college.
My sister really did die after I ran away when I was 8.
The police really did chase me through the desert when I was 8.
My mother really does hate me.
My biological sister that was adopted really has rejected me.
My brother really did attack my cat and my bank account.
My other brother lives in middle east.
I really did donate my eggs so my friends can have a baby.

Most recently I spent five days in Aurora Las Encinas in Pasadena.  I've been searching for help with PTSD and can't find it despite the 500 providers in Los Angeles.  I really tried to check myself into the Del Amo Trauma Center.

I really do have PTSD.
I really believe my current therapist is dumping me.
I really am struggling  to find any reason to live.
I really can't get out of bed.  I really can't go to work.
I really don't have that many friends.
I really do have a wonderful girlfriend but she can't possibly provide me what I am missing.

I swear I'm not trying to be anyone else but me.  It's hard enough just being myself I really don't think I could even try to be someone else.  

I really am hurting so much it doesn't matter that I went to college.  My education can't make my past any better.  It doesn't make me feel any better, neither does the 38k in student loan debt I have hanging over my head.  I really can't keep living like this.  I can't do this anymore.  I'm so tried.

You win

It’s raining but not even the rain is providing me with any comfort today.  The Internet has been pretty cruel to me the last few days.  I’ve been accused of lying, of exaggerating, of copying someone else’s blog.  I’ve been told I’m a loser, a cheater, that I should just kill myself, that I should stop writing my blog.  I don’t know what to do but it really sucks and it’s really scary that there are people out there talking about me in such a negative way to each other before they even contact me.  I did not ask for the recent attention my blog has gotten but I’m sorry it seems to upset other people. 

I do not understand what I have done to deserve this.  I honestly don’t.  I have never tried to mimic or copy anyone else.  I have my own style of writing.  I write about what I know.  I’m pretty sure a lot of my story is similar to MANY foster children, but there is a lot to my story that is my very own.
I wasn’t aware the title “foster kid” was something that someone could claim ownership to.  I’ve been a foster kid my whole life.  I didn’t know that I wasn’t allowed to write a blog about foster care and my childhood because other people are doing it.   I wasn’t aware that writing dialogue between client and therapist belonged to someone else.  I wasn’t aware that going to a psychiatric hospital belonged to someone else.  I wasn’t aware that I wasn’t allowed to write about things that someone else somewhere might be writing about too. 

People have said that I am not allowed to talk about how unlovable I feel when I have a girlfriend, and some contact with my sister.  I don’t know what to say to this.  While it’s true, that I am not totally alone in life, it’s also true that my girlfriend cannot fill the voids I feel because I was never wanted by a family.  If we break up, I am totally alone again.  I have no one else.  It’s true that I have very minimal contact with my sister, but our relationship consists of me coming to her rescue when she needs it.  In the last five years I think I have visited her once.   My brother contacts me but he is violent and scary.   My mother contacts me but she only wants to hurt me.  I’m not sure how any of this invalidates my pain.  I also did not grow up with any of my siblings.  My sister lived in the middle east until she came to live with me when I was 19.  

I am so lost and so hurt right now.  I’ve never felt so invalidated and alone as I do at this very moment. 
I realize that I am better off than most former foster children.  I have not tried to hide this.  I went to college.  I have a job (although not at the moment), I have health insurance, and I have a relationship because I am lucky to have found someone who puts up with all my crazy.  I have had contact with my biological mother, even if it’s only through really painful emails.  It’s true that I am not barely twenty.  I am in my mid-twenties.  I originally included all of my private info including my actual age, but I realized I didn’t want so many people to be able to find me elsewhere on the internet. 

But none of that changes just how much it hurts to have grown up without a family.  None of that changes just how lost and completely alone I feel in life.  None of that changes the nightmares or the flashbacks.  None of that changes the fact that despite my insomnia I spend every moment of the day in my bed.  EVERY MOMENT.  I cannot get out of bed.  I cannot even get up to eat.

Now not only does my own mother hate me and wish I were dead, strangers on the internet have written precisely that.  Strangers on the internet want me dead!  Strangers on the internet think I am a liar and a copycat and they want me to go away.  My whole life people have wanted me to go away.  My whole life people have devalued me and thrown me away.  I guess I was stupid to think it would be any different on the internet. 

Life is just never going to get better for me.  I give up.  I really freaking give up.  I can’t do this anymore.  You win.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Hey Jerks part 2

I should not have to do this but I have really been having a hard time today. I spent most of the day in tears because of jerks. I might be crazy. I might be a total fuck up in life. I might be unlovable and totally screwed up but I am NOT a LIAR. Thanks for the panic attacks, tears, and invalidation today. I really needed it on top of everything else.

Just to repeat:  Before anyone freaks out about the name on these documents, I've said in other posts that I went by my middle name as a child. 





HEY JERK

Those who have been unbelievably cruel to me through email, blog posts, and blog comments lately can choke on their hateful words. I am not a liar. I am just a girl who wants to make a difference in the lives of other children. Not every law is the same in every state. Not every law was the same when I was in foster care. I know what I am talking about.  Before anyone freaks out about the name on these documents, I've said in other posts that I went by my middle name as a child. 





This blog and why I write it

I keep trying to write even when it hurts.  I keep trying to write about what hurts.  To write about what hurts me and what is still hurting foster children today.  I want to heal myself, but I also want to make a difference for those who are currently suffering in foster care.  For those who will suffer when they age out.  That’s why I started this blog.  It’s for me and for them.  I want the world to know what really happens to children in foster care in the United States.  I want the world to know that the pain doesn’t go away just because you turned 18.  The US tells the rest of the world how to treat and govern people yet the American government abuses, neglects and abandons its own children.  I want the world to see what really happens to children in foster care.  What really happened to me and what will really happen to more children if nothing changes.

There are those who have questioned what I have written in this blog.  Some have said that my memories are flawed because they are the memories of a child.  Some of have said that my mother could not have been as abusive as I say if her rights were not terminated until I was 8 years old.  Some say that I make blanket statements and don’t show the other side of the story.  I don’t write about how hard it is for biological parents to lose their children.  I don’t really know what to say to those people.  While I’m sure my adult mind would process what happened to me as a child differently than my child mind did, I have experiences, memories, the scars on my body and my soul as well as hospital records, police reports, and CPS records that verify that my memories are valid.  My story is valid.  My pain is valid. 

This blog is not about what is right and wrong with adoption in the world today.  This blog is not about the politics involved in adoption.  It’s not about people who are angry and sad about being adopted or those who are angry about losing their children.  This blog is about foster children.  This blog is about growing up without a family.  It’s about what happens when children age of foster care without a family.  It’s about me and what I lived through.  It’s about former foster children and those just entering the system.  It’s about giving a human identity to the statistics.  It’s not easy to put myself out here like this.  It’s not easy to write my most painful and shameful secrets and feelings and put it up for everyone to see and judge, but I am doing it for the little girl I used to be and for the little girls and boys who will go through what I went through.  Maybe many people don’t really want to hear what happens to children in foster care and when they age out without a family.  All I can do is ask them to please not read my blog. 

I write about my feelings today and my feelings when I was growing up because I’m twenty-something and I’m still struggling to survive.  I’m twenty-something and I still want a family.  I still want a mom.  I still want to be adopted.  I still want someone to want me, to keep me.  I know it will never happen for me but the pain and yearning will never stop.  It will never go away.  Ever.  The only thing I have ever wanted in life is a family and no amount of therapy, medication, or blogging can ever give me that.

I want to be a source of hope for the kids who are aging out of foster care but how do I do that when I feel so hopeless?  I can’t even be a source of hope for myself.  I have so many thoughts and so many words, but none of them are adequate to describe what it feels like to be born to a mother that doesn’t want you or love you and then to be stuck in a system of revolving families that reject you until you turn 18 and have absolutely no one in life.  No words can adequately describe what it feels like to feel so unwanted and unloved your whole life.  That the only constant in your life is that people always leave you.  That is my experience.  People come into my life, wait until I care about them, and then dump me.  I know that people come and go in the lives of most people, but most people have a base of people that never leave them, of people that have always been there.  People that know them and love them no matter what.  I have NEVER had that.  I will never have that.  Too many foster children will never have that.  That is why I write.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Parental Rights, Human Rights, and Foster Care

When people abuse their animals and the police find out, they usually lose those animals for good.  They aren’t given a second, third, or 12th chance to take care of their pets.  With children it's different.  Children are removed from their abusive homes only to be given back to the people who abuse them.  The law states that biological parents have a right to their children but the legal rights of parents should never trump the human rights of their children.  Abusive parents should not be given chance after chance to be decent parents and human beings for their children.  CPS removed my siblings and me from our mother at least 12 times before she had her rights removed and was sent to prison for felony child abuse.  By the time her rights were removed and I became available for adoption I was 8 years old.  The chances of an 8 year old foster child being adopted are pretty small.  CPS waited until I was too old and too damaged to be loved by a family.  If they had kept me when I was an infant and adopted me out to someone that wanted a baby my life would be so different today.  The lives of my siblings would be so different today.  I’m not saying my life would have been perfect or easy.  I’ve never wanted a perfect or easy life.  I just wanted a family that loved me and a place to call home.  I just wanted to belong somewhere.  That’s all I ever wanted.  That’s all any foster child ever wants.  They just want to be safe and loved.

Parents should not have years to get their act together.  There should be a limited amount of time for parents to get their acts together and that time should start ticking the moment a child is removed from their care.  When the time runs out, so should their rights and their children should become adoptable.  They should not be allowed to abuse their children over and over before someone steps in and says that’s enough.  I don’t care what the law says, children deserve better.  Parents don’t deserve more than one chance to do the right thing.

If I were to beat an adult, starve them, and lock them in a closet for days I would be sent to prison and probably for a very long time.  If I were to do that to my child, my child would be removed from my care and I would probably be required to go to counseling and parenting classes if I wanted my child back.   I probably wouldn’t go to jail.  I know this because that is what happened with my mother repeatedly.  My mother only went to prison for child abuse after years of some pretty horrific abuse that I can’t really write about.   

In my opinion, an assault on a child should be considered far worse than an assault on an adult.  Children deserve the same rights and protections as adults.  They deserve to be protected from adults.   I know this sounds like common sense but this is not what is happening in our country today.  Parents are given years to do what they need to do for their children.  Those are precious years of the childhoods of those children.  The more time that passes the more damage that occurs to those children.  I wish my story was unusual.  I wish this wasn’t still happening to children today but it is.  This happens to children every single day.  Sometimes what is best for children is love and stability and not biology.  I wish being a parent was a privilege and not a right.  I wish people would pay attention to what is really happening to children in our country and the rest of the world 

Adults who have spent a year or more in foster care are two times more likely to have PTSD than war veterans.  They are also five times more likely to attempt suicide than the general population.  That’s alarming.  I do not understand why this isn’t considered a national crisis.  I don’t know much about the care of veterans with PTSD, but I do know they at least have some resources.  Foster children have none.  Trust me, I have been searching.  Why don’t more people know about the horrifying statistics that foster children face when they grow up in the system and when they age out?  Why don’t more people care?  Even if people have no compassion or humanity for the plight of foster children they should at least care about the costs to society and their taxes.

Every child has the potential to be a healthy, happy, contributing member of the world.  Foster care makes reaching that potential nearly impossible.  Foster care produces traumatized, undereducated, lost, angry, and damaged adults and then leaves them to fend for themselves.  Read the statistics that foster children face here.  This comes with a price beyond the lives of the children.  This comes with a cost to society and tax payers so even if they don’t care about foster children they should care about what it costs the country and the world when their government abuses children and then abandons them for growing up.    

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Foster care, PTSD, and finding treatment

As detailed in the Casey Family study, in addition to the PTSD, 54.4% of adults formerly in foster care were found to be suffering from depression, social phobia, panic syndrome, and anxiety. Moreover, it was found that 80% of adults who had been placed in Foster Care as children, were doing poorly, with a quarter to one third becoming homeless or living below the poverty level.
The article this quote came from goes on to say that foster care is more harmful than abusive families.  I am not sure if I agree with that as blanket statement.  I don't know if they really have the data to back that up and I also think the word abuse is subjective.  One child might experience spanking while another child might experience severe beatings.  Both are considered abusive by some people but I feel one is far more damaging than the other.  But foster care IS damaging.  Foster care has damaged me.  Foster care has damaged all my siblings and every person I know who grew up in the system.  Foster care in itself is damaging but what is even worse for far too many children is the abuse they endured while in care.  What I experienced in foster care was equal to my mother's abuse at times and far worse than anything she could have ever done to me at other times.  Besides the abuse that happens in foster care there is often no one for a foster child to attach to.  Foster children don't bond or attach with their care takers as much as they would with a family member, even an abusive one.  Foster children grow up in a system that is unlike the rest of the world.  We grow up not knowing how to exist in the real world.  We grow up and don't know how to survive in the real world.  We don't know how to bond, relate, make relationships.  We don't know how to live in the real world.  We never really have the chance to grow up and we never really have a chance to be children.  Our development is stunted.  We get stuck somewhere between children and adults.  We never really get to be either.  We were never children and we will never fully be adults.  The system that was meant to save us from abuse damages us and then leaves us to figure out how to survive in this foreign land totally on our own.    

The foster care system has left me damaged and alone and without resources to help myself.  I tried to check into the Del Amo Trauma Center today but sadly my insurance won't cover it.  My insurance won't cover any trauma centers or trauma specific treatment because it's considered elective and exceptional.  Whatever that means.  I can't win.  I can't help myself.  I can't get what I need to feel better, to be able to live.  I can't live like this for very long.  I didn't go to work again today.  I emailed my supervisor and told her I think I need to take a leave because I thought I was going to go to the trauma treatment center after I called them last night for more information.  The guy on the phone said they absolutely take my insurance.  He was mistaken.  The regular inpatient hospital takes my insurance but the trauma center does not.  I really don't understand.  I am sure it costs a little bit more, but I think ultimately it would be cheaper for my insurance to send me to the trauma center in the long run.  The sad thing is, if I were on government health insurance like medicaid or Medi-cal I could go to the trauma center.  I don't know what to do.  There are no real trauma specialist under my insurance and the inpatient hospital I went to a couple of weeks ago was a joke.  It was just a holding facility where they held me captive and checked on me every 15 minutes.  How is that treatment?  How is that help?  I need HELP not indifferent babysitting.  I need help but I don't know how to get it.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Fractured

“I feel so disposable,” I said in therapy.  My therapist said, “We’re all disposable.”  I thought about this for a moment before I said, “Some more than most.”  She didn’t respond.  It’s true and she knows it.  I am more disposable than she has ever been or will ever be.  I don’t know very much about her life, but I know that she has a family.  She has a mom.  She has people who love her unconditionally.  She belongs to people.  She will always belong to people.  She has roots and family history.  She has people that will be there for her if she ever needs anything.  She went to really expensive colleges so I’m guessing her family paid for that for her which means she has people that support her too.  She has what I have always wanted plus some.  She can never fully understand what it feels like to be me.  No matter how hard she tries to empathize with me, she’ll never fully understand what it feels like to have never been wanted.  Void is not a big enough word to describe what I feel.  I don’t feel a void.   I feel empty.  I feel empty and yet so heavy.  I feel so lost and broken.  Fractured.  My heart and soul are fractured in pieces just like my life.  A piece of me broke off every single time I moved as a child.  My body left but a piece of me stayed behind.  42 foster homes, hundreds of motels, countless states, three countries.  I am scattered in too many places to ever find all the pieces.  Each time a family rejected me, each time I was thrown away, the remaining pieces cracked and fractured some more.   I am forever broken.  I am forever lost.  I’ll never be a whole person.  I’ll never be me.   But when you are a kid anything is possible.  When you are a kid, your dreams are enough to carry you, enough to push you through the pain.  But now I am all grown up and I’ve failed at all my dreams.  Well, really I gave up on all my dreams.  I gave up when I thought I might fail.  I gave up before I could fail.  I used to have so much ambition and now I am ambitionless.  I don’t have any dreams to keep me going.  I don’t have a dream to get me through this.

The feelings and thoughts are back.  I have one okay day and then I crash.  Why does my mind always go there?  It’s overly dramatic and scary but sometimes I can’t think about anything else.   I slept pretty much all day and didn’t eat except for a couple of granola bars until about 5pm.  I got really shaky from low blood sugar which happens sometimes because I have hypoglycemia.  I haven’t had an episode in a while, not since I started my medication.  It is a medication for a hormone problem I got after going through IVF (What I did), but it had an unexpected positive side effect of regulating my low blood sugar.  Instead of drinking juice and eating an apple like I know I should have, I went to Starbucks and got a decaf mocha and a cookie and then I went to the drug store and bought two large laffy taffys and box of redvines.  I ate so much junk food and now I feel gross and agitated from the sugar high.  All I ate today was sugar and now I feel disgusting.  

I have to work an extra-long day tomorrow.  I really can’t bear the thought of it but I know I have to do it.  I can barely get out of bed right now, but I can’t avoid going back to work.  I’ll lose my job and my insurance.  I wish I was currently laid off like I have been in the summers the last couple of years.  I need a break from everything.  From life.  From myself.  I need something but I don’t know what it is.  

Sometimes I think maybe going to a hospital that specializes in my issues would be a good idea, but that would require a leave from work which means I won’t make any money and I’ll have to pay the large copay for inpatient care.   All the programs available also treat chemical dependencies which I currently do not have.  Why do I have to be addicted to something in order to be treated for PTSD?  I’ve never been so lost.  I’ve never been this depressed.  I mean, I have, but not as an adult.  At least when I was a child I didn’t have any real responsibilities.  I could self-destruct and not have any major consequences.  If I do it today, my whole life could fall apart.  I could make my life so much harder.  I feel like I might implode any minute now.  Everything feels so wrong right now.  Breathing feels wrong.  I just feel wrong.  I don’t know who I am at all.  I don’t know who I am or where I stand on anything right now.  ANYTHING.  I’m so lost, but maybe I’ve always been this lost and I am only now aware of it.  Maybe I’ll always be this lost.  Maybe this is how my mother, brother, and sister feel.  Maybe they are just as lost and alone except I have so much more than they do.  I am better off than them.  I am better off now, but for how much longer?  How much longer can I continue this way before I become them?  Maybe I already have.  It’s inevitable.  All of it.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Therapy heist

I slept. For the first time in what feels like years I slept more than a couple of hours last night. I took an Ambien and an Ativan, watched some TV, and was asleep by 3AM. I woke up at 11AM. That’s a full 8 hours of sleep! My mind feels… lighter. I feel better. Not perfect but better.

I just got back from Therapy. I saw my therapist in the hallway coming out of the bathroom and without saying anything I just stuck my hand out asking for the bathroom key. She giggled and gave it to me. I walked back to the office, pushed the button next to my therapist’s name and sat down. She opened the door exactly two minutes later. “Come on back.” I decided to sit in her chair again. She laughed. I sat silent with my legs crossed exactly like she does, waiting for her to start. She giggled, perhaps a little bit nervous? “You look different on the couch,” I said. “I do? How so?” She asked. “I don’t know, I guess you look smaller.” I shrugged and moved back to the brown leather sofa. She moved back to her chair. “Because the couch is bigger?” She suggested. “I guess so.” We fell silent, but she was still smiling. “How are you today?” I asked, knowing I would get a generic response. “I’m good today. How are you?”

Me: “I’m okay.”
Her: “Yeah?”
Me: “I slept a lot.”
Her: “Really? That’s unusual. That must feel great.”
Me: “Yeah I feel good.”

I picked at the label on my bottle of Tropical Honest Tea. “I don’t know what to talk about today. What do you want to talk about?”
Her: “I want to talk about how you said I am giving you mixed signals.”
Me: “Well, you tell me you’re not going to be my therapist anymore and then you are.”
Her: “Did I say something or not say something that led you to believe that?”
Me: “Both.”
Her: “Uh huh”
Me: “You said you didn’t think you were helping me and you were looking for people who could help me
         better. Then you said nothing.”
Her: “uh huh.”
Me: “It’s like you said when people are in a relationship and they threaten to break up all the time, how that
         puts the other person in a powerless situation…I feel like you’re doing that to me.”
Her: “Yeah. I imagine you feel like that in a lot of your relationships.”
Me: ( Not sure how that really matters) “I’m always waiting for people to leave. I expect it. I’d rather they
        just do it than hold it over my head.”
Her: “I imagine you feel that way a lot. So in a way what’s happening here is mirroring what happens in
         relationships in your life.”
Me: “um, I guess so.” I am a bit angry that she’s not reassuring me she’s not going to leave but I don’t say
         anything.”

We sit in silence again.
Her: “It’s hard for you that you don’t know very much about me?” She’s referring to something in the email I
          wrote to her a few days ago.  I smile.  
Me: “I know you like cheese.”
She laughs.
Her: “Cheese is tasty.”
Me: “And cats.” I pick at my bottle some more. “But not together. We’ll maybe together.”
Her: “The cat could like the cheese. How would it help you to know more about me?”
Me: “I don’t know. Because I would know who I am taking to. I would know you better. I could read you
         better.”
Her: “But maybe knowing how to read me better wouldn’t make things easier for you.”

I'm not sure what she means by that? Does she think negative things about me often?
Me: “I don’t know, I know that’s how it’s supposed to be, but I don’t like it. I think it’s stupid.”
Her: “I don’t know if that’s how it’s supposed to be. It’s changing. It depends on the approach you take.”

I’m not sure why she’s telling me that. It only makes me feel worse that I don’t know more about her because it means she’s choosing to remain distant from me.

Her: “How would you like it to be?”
Me: “I don’t know. I guess I would like it better if it was just like two regular people talking and less like, I
        don’t know, doctor-patient.”
Her: “You don’t like that there is a power differential.”
Me: “I don’t think there is a power differential.”
Her: “You don’t like that I would try to stop you if you were going to kill yourself.” She’s referring to the time
         she called the police on me.
Me: “Well, I could call the cops on you too and tell them you were going to hurt yourself…anonymously.”
Her: “Well, I guess you could, but that would be a little different.”
Me: “I guess so.”
Her: “No matter what, there will always be a power difference because you are coming to me for help.”
Me: “I guess.”

We talk about my email and if she's going to keep working with me.  She doesn't give me any answers.

Me: “I’m upset that you’re not answering my questions.”
Her: “I wasn’t aware there was a question.”
Me: “Okay. Never mind.”
Her: “Why did you just retract?”
Me: “It doesn’t matter.”
Her: “We have to find a better way of expressing yourself instead of threatening suicide to your friends.”
Me: “I don’t talk about suicide with my friends.”
Her: “Okay with me then.”

         don’t want to me to tell you about them.”
Her: “No, Let’s be clear, if you are going to kill yourself I definitely want to know. I want you to tell me. I’m
         saying that maybe you can tell me about the feelings that make you go there. Like you can say, I just
         feel so out of control and desperate. When you say you want to kill yourself, it turns on alarm bells and
          it closes the door for dialogue.”
Me: “Okay.”

I pick at my bottle of tea some more.  I remove the label and put it back on, then pick the glue from my fingers.  My therapist aligns her fingers on both hands in thought or possibly boredom before she asks me a question.

Her: “I am wondering what you’re feeling about me
         being gone next week.”
Me: “What do you mean?”
Her: “What’s it going to be like for you when we
         don’t see each other for a couple weeks?”
Me: “I don’t know. I’ll be okay.”
Her: Yeah?
Me: “Will you?” I smile. “Try not to miss me too
          much.”
She laughs and I ask, “Why are you going to so many conferences?”

Her: “I’m not, I just have ideas of conferences I want
         to go to.”
Me: “So what are you doing? Where are you going?”
She laughs again.
Her: “What do you think I’m doing?”
Me: “I don’t know. For all I know you could be a jewel thief outside of therapy.”
Her eyes light up and she giggles and plays along.
Her: “What kind of jewels would I steal?”
Me: “Um... Precious gems.”
Her: “How would you feel if I were a jewel thief?”
Me: "That would be awesome!”
She seems amused and continues to laugh throughout the conversation.

Her: “Well, that wouldn’t be very good because if I got caught I would go to prison.”
Me: “I’d have to have therapy in prison.”
Her: “They might not let me have any visitors as a jewel thief.”
Me: “I’m sure they would.”
Her: “Yeah, maybe.”
Me: “So if you come back with lots of jewelry, I’ll know.”
Her: “I wouldn’t be able to wear the jewels because they would be too big.”
Me: “Maybe that’s why your bag has gotten so fat," I say and point to her red leather brief case.
She laughs again. “I wouldn’t be a very good jewel thief if I hid the jewels in my bag.”
Me: “No one would think to look in there.”
Her: “That’s true; maybe I’m just being clever.”
Me:  “So you wear all black and come down from the ceiling, smoke a cigarette to find the laser beams.”

She laugh and we continue to switch back and forth between playful scenarios of jewel thievery and serious discussion for most of the session. I’m still upset that she won’t tell me that she won’t leave me or what she’s really doing, but I don’t really say anything about it. I’m sure she knows.  Maybe she doesn't care or maybe she just doesn't know if she's going to ditch me or not.


Her: “If you need to talk to someone while I am gone, I will have the name and number of a really great
         therapist on my voicemail.”
Me: “I don’t want to talk to a stranger.”
Her: “I know you don’t, but if you need to talk to someone, she’s a good stranger to talk to.”
I don’t say anything.
Her: “Did you pay me for today?”
Me: “Not yet.” I reach into my pocket and grab my crumpled bills and hand them to her. “Is it time to go?”
Her: “Almost.”
Me: “Okay well good luck with the heist.”  I stand up and walk to the door.
She laughs, “Thanks have a good weekend."  I open the door and say "Okay, bye" as I close it.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

What?

I seriously do not understand life, people, relationships-- basically the fucking world.  I just don't get it.  I am beyond lost right now.  So my therapist isn't dumping me anymore.  I wrote her a really long email telling her how I feel about her and the whole situation and then I told her to fuck off.  Literally.  Now she wants to stick around.  What?  So all I have to do to keep people around is tell them to fuck off?  Really?  I just don't get it.  If that's the case I have seriously been living my life the wrong way.  I'm just going to live my life the way I feel like it and stop worrying about other people's opinions and feelings.  I'm going to try the things I've always wanted to try and do the things I want to do, consequences be damned.  I don't care what happens anymore, I really don't.  I don't know what I want with therapy anymore.  I don't know if I want her to be my therapist anymore.  It feels like everything is ruined.  I really just don't get it and I don't trust her motives for staying.