Calling Out of Work

So, today I called out of work for the umpteenth time, and I feel awful about it, I truly do. There are just some days where I can’t, for one reason or another, bring myself to get out of bed. There is the possibility that I will lose my job, and I don’t even know if I would care. Depression has this way of developing bad habits for people. In my case, it is most definitely calling out of work, and my personal hygiene (see my blog for a post about that). There are things that we do when we are depressed, so that it doesn’t seem to hurt as much, or so that we can make it through the day. Often enough, when we do these things to make ourselves feel more comfortable, they become habitual. Humans are inherently scared to leave their comfort zone, leaving themselves vulnerable. I most certainly am one of those people, not to mention the added bonus of having pretty bad anxiety. When I get up in the morning, the first thoughts that run through my head are, “Oh I’m not dead yet” and “What do I need to do to survive the day”. I know, pretty contradictory, but my brain is funny like that. I have this weird balance in my depression of wanting to die, but if I don’t die, than how do I make it through the day to maybe die tomorrow. I mean, it’s not a pretty reason, but for some odd reason it keeps me going. Today was another one of those days where I didn’t die in my sleep, so I automatically went to how am I going to survive the day. The first issue was that I didn’t want to go to my begrudgingly boring and mediocre job, because I knew that doing what I do for 8 hours would probably only worsen the depression that I was already feeling when I woke up. The second problem, was that I am out of paid time off, and I’m taking more time than I have been allotted, which creates problems for my bosses. Hence, why it is a possibility that I may lose my job. I can already see what you’re thinking, “Alan, if you hate your job that much than why don’t you leave?” Simple, because the company I work for is a great company with tons of benefits, and I worked really hard to get into it in the first place. The only problem is, while I’m currently going back to school to work on my degree, I’m stuck at this pathetic level where I hate my job, but love my company. So what choice do I have but try my best to stick it out until I earn my degree? It just is so hard sometimes, that it makes my head spin. I don’t know why I am the way I am, but I have a strong feeling that my depression is to blame. Hopefully, I have it in me to get out of bed tomorrow and go to work like any other normal person. Until then, I’ll just continue to vent to all of you lovely people in the hopes that I can alleviate some of the distress that I am feeling today.

 

Thanks as always,

Wolfgang

The past week

The other day I found out that my counselor had to quit her job and her last day is the 20th. she had decided to move on from her job as community mental health professional. I thought that she would at least be my counselor till I was finished with treatment. Although she is changing jobs I’m very upset with her. I have borderline personality disorder (bpd) and i struggle with people just up and leaving me. I’ve had this problem since I was younger. I’ve lost many counselors to changing jobs or insurance not paying for my treatment. I hate losing counselors. I get to become friends with my counselor until the end of my treatment. 

I get connected to my counselors in a professional sense. I can’t become friends with them outside of the sessions we have. I just feel left alone with her leaving me in the hands of another counselor that i haven’t even met. I’m scared that I’m going to clash with my new counselor. I don’t want my case to be left in the hands of someone else. I’m scared that they’ll screw me up worse than I already am. 

On top of all of this I found out last week that my boss was leaving the store I work at to another store in the company. I’m scared and nervous about this too. I’m mostly worried that I’m not going to get along with the new boss. I’m afraid that I’m going to quit or get fired, because I’m screwing something up or because I don’t work well with the new store manager of my store. I don’t want to lose this job. I don’t want to lose my counselor. I don’t want to lose anything.

I feel like they’ve decided to take other jobs to themselves. I don’t mind people wanting to better themselves, but I have BPD and struggle with people leaving me. I don’t want to lose anything or anyone. I especially don’t want to lose any of the professionals in my life. Losing anyone on my team would be devastating to me and I’m losing two people from my team. I’m scared the new people on my team will be snobs or not caring. I’m used to people not caring that are outside of my team. So someone new coming on to my team without the old people telling them what is going on with me is a little scary for me.

A Mental Health Update for the Bipolar Writer

Where Has The Bipolar Been?

neonbrand-618322-unsplashSince starting this blog over a year ago, this is perhaps the longest it has been between writing posts for my blog. I have been lucky that my fellow contributors on The Bipolar Writer blog have picked up the slack in writing some fantastic and vital articles since the last time we talked. I thank each and every contributor and follower of this blog for continuing to come to this blog as a safe place.

I have been busy. I am working on adjusting my daily routine to help curb my social anxiety with some success. I have been growing my freelance work also with some success. When you add that I am a full-time student, it means there is little time for me to write my thoughts here on the blog. I miss writing, but there are only so many days in a week. I won’t lie, I am considering taking a break until next year from my blog, I have loved what we have done here, but at the same time, the need to focus on finally getting over the hump and publishing my memoir is growing each day.

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There is an upside of working on my social anxiety (and my overall mental health) as of late. I have broken through some of the isolation that was going on over the last month or two, it helps that I am meeting more clients in the field (which means coffee shops for someone like me) and I am hopeful that I can continue to work on my social anxiety and isolation.

I have to admit, the first time in months going to my local coffee shop to work with a client was a scary thought. The last time I had spent more than ten minutes in a crowded place that I have always felt comfortable was in July of this year. After a while, I found my comfort zone, and it felt so good. True, I need to open up more, but this is a significant step in the right direction. That is everything in this mental illness life.

I can tell over the last week or so that my social anxiety is trending in the right direciton. I still have days where it is a struggle, but given that we are in November, it is to be expected.

That takes me to this week, my anniversary week. I will be writing a big post on Thursday, the actual anniversary of my diagnosis. I have written something about the years that have passed by every year in the past six years. I have come so far, further than I ever thought was possible. This week will be about hope in the face of living with mental illness. I feel good going into this week.

That is it for now. I will try and write more this week. Stay strong in the fight.

James

Always Keep Fighting

Photo Credit:

unsplash-logoCamille Orgel

NeONBRAND

Helena Lopes

Depression for Dummies

Hi. I’m Chelsea, and I am married to a wonderful, talented, intelligent man who is pretty dumb when it comes to mental illness.

Perhaps you know someone like this. Your bright, helpful person may be a friend, parent, brother, sister, or boss. As well-meaning as he or she might pretend to be, this acquaintance just doesn’t get it. Worse, he or she is often so inept that whenever effort is made, you feel he or she constantly places a clumsy finger right on a fresh bruise and pushes.

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But our friends and family don’t have to be idiots. Honestly, we really need love and support for our mental health and we can be tough nuts to crack.

In light of that, I’ve developed a helpful guide. I call it The Depressive Feelings/Better Responses Guide (of Science). Just whip this puppy out whenever you want to whip them upside the head and you’ll both feel better:

  1. When someone says that he is feeling depressed, a cheery life aphorism like, “Life isn’t all bad,” “Don’t worry; be happy,” or “The sun’ll come out tomorrow” isn’t helpful. At all.
    Instead, try, “I understand that you are feeling depressed.” This may easily be followed by, “I’d like to help alleviate some of your stress. Can I clean your whole kitchen for you?,” or “…I happen to know that chocolate is half-off at the store. I’ll be right back with a pound or two.”
  2. If a depressed person says she feels hopeless; that everything in life is hard: the incorrect response is to point out how easy her life is. Please oh please do not say, “But you don’t have any serious issues like cancer or your arms falling off.”
    A better answer? “Let’s address your concerns one at a time. Maybe you could write a list, then we can come up with a solution for each one.”
    Or simply listen, without criticism. Some people just really need an ear to dump in.
  3. How about fatigue? Do you tell someone with depression that he shouldn’t be tired? That he should get to bed earlier? No, silly. He knows he should get to bed earlier; worrying about how he needs to sleep is one of the things that kept him up.
    Validate the feelings of the tired person. A passable idea might be to describe a cool idea you read recently -about writing all of one’s concerns on a paper by the side of the bed at night. Maybe you have a really boring book you could lend him.
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  4. Let’s say she is feeling poorly about herself. Her self-esteem is in the toilet of the deep, dark dungeon of the evil underworld troll king’s nephew. Do not advise a person with depressive tendencies that, “You’re a great person,” or how many talents she has and how she has the potential for so much more.
    Telling a depressed person of wasted potential will bring on a crying fit. You’re just backing up the mean little voice already in her head (herself).
    One of the best things to say is that you like her, that you like a specific thing about her (say, her ability to come up with Britney Spears song lyrics at the drop of a hat). Try to turn the focus on something else, especially if that is on a happy memory.
  5. When someone with depressive tendencies withdraws from life, reach out. You need to act if he does one of the following: not answering texts, appearing less-frequently online, and even telling people, “Goodbye.”
    If you can’t go, try to get his family or other friends to physically check in. Even a vocal phone call is better than a text. A visit is better than an e-mail. A long, in-person conversation is better than a social media message.

I have a difficult time with about everything in life due to a negative perspective and very little self-motivation. I need my husband, my few friends, and my family. Theirs are the hands that reach into the cave of my mind and pull me to safety.

With specific directions like this, we can work toward loving the hand that reaches. At the very least, we won’t feel like slapping it away.

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Picture credits:
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