My Healing Journey

At the beginning of the year my number one goal was for me to work on healing myself from the inside out. I had put my own inner healing on hold for a long time. I had pushed down the most painful memories of my childhood in hopes I would never have to think about them again. Over these last eight months more and more old wounds have been resurfacing. Old wounds that I forgot were even there were resurfacing. This was finally my time to work on healing myself.

 

I grew up in an abusive household facing abuse from my mother on a daily basis. I suffered from this abuse from a very young age up until my early adulthood. I suffered from physical, verbal, and psychological abuse. The most damaging towards me was the psychological abuse.

 

Growing up I always knew there was something “off” about my mom because of the way she treated me. I was the oldest child and I guess my mom figured she could take out all her aggression on me. My brother was extremely lucky because my mom treated him completely opposite of how she treated me.

 

A month ago I read a book about healing from Narcissistic abuse. It opened up my eyes to what narcissistic abuse is all about and it confirmed for me that it was the abuse I suffered from growing up. It confirmed my theory that my mom was a narcissist and the symptoms & actions described fit my mom perfectly.

 

My entire life I could never fully be myself. My mom was the one who called all of the shots during my childhood. It didn’t matter what I wanted to do, if she didn’t like it then I couldn’t do it. It was like my mom was trying to live out her life through me. I wanted to play piano and my mom hated that, she threw away my piano books because she didn’t want me to play it. I wanted to do gymnastics, but she told me no & convinced me that I was never good enough to do it in the first place. She hated me having friends and never let me hang out with my friends. This occurred throughout my entire childhood.

 

She terrorized me, manipulated me, and controlled me my entire life. This book opened up my eyes to how abusive a narcissist can be and how evil they can be.

My mom caused me immense pain growing up. She told me things no child or person should ever have to hear especially from your own mother. I was screamed at so many times. She told me lies like that she didn’t want me born, she wished she aborted me when she had the chance, no one in my family likes me, I’m a burden, I have no friends, I’m fat, I’m not pretty, and I’m not good enough. She RARELY told me she loved me & meant it.

 

Now that I’ve reached adulthood and have started my own healing, I feel like I’m starting to find myself all over again. My mom never let me express who I was so I was always fitting into the mold she wanted. I finally feel like I’m starting to find my own identity and who I truly am as a person.

 

At first I felt like I was going through an identity crisis because I didn’t know who I was as a person at first. It’s forced me to dig deep inwards to get in touch with my true authentic self. I’m still learning who I truly am on a daily basis. I’m starting to finally feel free again since I no longer have to conform to what she had led me to believe my entire life.

Inner Fears – A Guest Blog Spot

How to deal With Your Inner Fears

I write this blog post using my own personal experience. I am not a psychiatrist so tread lightly.  First of all, if your fears put you in any kind of danger then I would seek professional help immediately.  Medication plus counseling is the key. Counseling helps you talk about your fears and gets to the main cause of those fears.  Knowing the cause empowers you to heal.

I speak of fears or inner demons.  Fears to go out of your home fears to interact with people, fears of places or things.

The first thing to do is to analyze whether your fears are real.  You can do this by listing your fears and then rate them from one to ten.  With one being your weakest fear and ten being your strongest fear.  Then list the lowest fear first and so on.  Now beside each fear write down if it’s real or not.  You can challenge your fear by questions like the following.

  1. Has this happened before in the past?
  2. Does this happen all the time?
  3. Is this real or is it just in my mind?

If your fears aren’t real and are only in your mind then it’s time to seek professional help and medication.  A psychiatrist can help.

But even if your fears aren’t real you may need help to face them.  I know of a way that can help.  You take one fear at a time to work on.  Use the list you made above.  Make a form for the first lowest ranking fear.  Then you rate your fear on a scale of one to ten.  Then you think of the negative belief that fear.  For example: they’re going to get me!  And you write down the negative belief and rate your belief in it on a scale from one to ten.  Then you think of a positive counter statement.  A positive statement that will help you deal with your fear and that negative belief.  For example:  They’re not interested in me!  Rate the belief in this positive counter-statement on a scale from one to ten.

If your belief in the positive counter statement is higher than your belief in the initial negative thought then you are winning already.  If it doesn’t continue to work on your fear.  With time it will get better.

Rerate the first negative belief after you think of your positive counter statement.  It should have dropped.  Then write down what you are feeling after facing your fear and rate it on a scale of one to ten.

As you go out of your comfort zone to face your fear, this positive counter statement will bring down your belief in the negative thought and bring down your fear!  The more often you go out of your comfort zone to face your fear, the more chances that the positive counter statement will slowly bring down your fears.

But remember to work on one fear at a time. As I said, start with the lowest ranking fear for practice.  This should take a couple of months at least.  Daily facing your fear will bring the initial feeling of fear down as well as the belief in that initial negative thought.  We are working on that initial negative belief.  We are also working on increasing the belief in the positive counter statement.

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Once your belief in the negative thought is down to one or two out of ten you can consider that you have succeeded in challenging your fear.  Then work on the next fear on that initial list.  Again create a form where you can write down each time the rating of your fear, your belief in the initial negative belief, your positive counter statement, your belief in your positive counter statement and the subsequent belief in the negative thought.  Then write down the emotion that you are feeling and rate it.  For me, it was always a relief.

Good luck in facing your fears! Remember that if at any time you feel overwhelmed, take a moment, breathe, relax and stop.  Go to your safe place at home or stop for a coffee and relax. Take a deep breath and concentrate on your breathing and relax.  Don’t face your fear again until the next day.

Good luck!

Author: Miriam’s Art

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoLeio McLaren

Introduction

If you have ever ridden a roller coaster, you understand the excitement and fear that courses through your mind and body as you burst through the track. You experience such an intense jolt of so many emotions as your breath is stolen from falling and you only have enough time to take another breath as you ascend. In a lot of ways, bipolar disorder seems to share many similarities. It seems to change a person drastically in mere moments and can even span episodes for days at a time. You never know how you will feel when you wake up in the morning. You never know what will happen to send you spiraling into a depressive episode. I often like to call it a “Jekyll and Hyde” effect in my personal blog.

I am Shelton Fisher and recently I have been given the privilege to be a contributing writer for The Bipolar Writer. I am a 25 year old with a full time job, an amazing wife, and the two best dogs in the world. I used to be a decent musician and writing has become a passion of mine. Amid the wonderful things that life has provided for me, I have mental health issues that fight me tooth and nail on a regular basis. Anxiety has been a familiar part of my life since I was a child, but alcoholism and panic attacks made me realize that I needed to finally address these problem medically. In September of last year I was diagnosed with General Anxiety Disorder and began a regimen of serotonin inhibitors and recently I have began seeing a therapist. After several sessions addressing my childhood behaviors and my current behaviors, we have discussed that I may be bipolar and the symptoms honestly surprised me.

As I continue the journey into my mental health to confirm a diagnosis and discover how to live a better life, I want to include you through personal stories, free verse poetry, and the occasional informative post. I am not a professional by any means, but I am living proof that mental health is a war to be won. If you have ever been afraid to speak, afraid to make a move, lost motivation and hope, hurt yourself because you couldn’t find the right words or felt trapped inside your body, screamed at the top of your lungs with tears rolling down your boiling red cheeks, self medicated with alcohol or drugs, fallen into depression for no apparent reason, or just want to know how I am handling things, my posts are for you.

10 Things the Bipolar Writer is Afraid Of

I thought this would be a great blog post to write. In my social anxiety life, there are things that I use (avoidance behaviors), and I wanted to write what are things that that scare me the most when I leave my house.

10 Things I am Afraid of in This Life

  1. Crowded Places scare me – I hate going to stores or malls because there are people. In my mind, I often think that people are judging me. That somehow they know I am Bipolar. How could they know?
  2. I am afraid of meeting new people –  I have never been good at making friends, although I have made some over the years. I have never been great at being the person that is openly open to meet new people. When I am at my favorite coffee shop, I tend to have my headphones on and drowning out the world.
  3. Dark places give me anxiety – I have not been to a movie theater since I had a terrible panic attack while watching a movie. It’s another place that gives me significant anxiety.
  4. I am afraid of being alone – It’s funny that I mention this because at the same time I revel in the introvert part of me. That doesn’t mean that I don’t have a fear of dying alone. I made a decision long ago to not bring a relationship into all of my issues. I have come so far, but my diagnosis ended my last relationship.
  5. I am afraid of failure – It has kept me from doing things over the years. I almost didn’t go back to college because I feared I would find a way to wreck things.
  6. I am afraid sometimes to drive – It wasn’t always so, but I have had my worst panic attacks behind the wheel of my car.
  7. I am afraid that one day I will go back – My biggest fear is that one day my depression will get me in a bad place I will turn to suicide again. Its highly unlikely but it is always in the back of my mind. When I get that way, I lose control. I never want to feel like this again, but its hard not to fear this truth.
  8. I fear someday my demons will come back – I fought my demons for so many years but they never honestly go away. I have worked out many through therapy, but it’s always a possibility.
  9. I fear being forgotten – This has happened to me before, and it was because I isolated myself from the world. I fear it could happen again and I will be forgotten.
  10. I fear not completing my goals – This is because I am my worst critic. What is worse what could happen if I fail at some point? I don’t deal well with failure in my past.

I hope you enjoyed!

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J.E. Skye

 

 

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoAndrew Neel

unsplash-logoPete Pedroza