Mental Health: If you're off your dot yourself...

Been at my current job for coming up on 3 years. I was just feeling comfortable in that role when I was promoted, and the cycle started anew. Been in this role just over a year and a half, and I still have anxiety about the future of the role itself, but concerns about management luckily subsided a while back.

I hope they give you no reason to justify your concerns, so you can feel better about things.

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No reason at all. They’re really, really nice people.

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That’s an interesting idea… while it helps me to discuss my problems with people, it never seems fun to me personally. Also, I can’t take it too lightly because I don’t trust people not to use that information against me. I worry I’ve shared too much on this site already. Our society marginalizes mental illness, and tends to deny the mentally ill dignity. I’ve watched it happen, even on here. Much as it pains me to say, people should think very carefully before sharing mental health information in any public forum.

You aren’t. Trauma comes in many forms… it isn’t how bad the trauma is, it is how it affects you. “Small” traumas can build up over time. I can’t diagnose you, but if this is causing you difficulty it is a good idea help to seek help regardless of what the diagnosis might be.

Everyone please bear in mind that our society typically over-dramatizes mental and neurological illness. PTSD is not always dramatic freak-outs and hiding; Tourette’s isn’t always about cursing; schizophrenia is not always about hearing voices. Sadly, the opposite is true of depression and the depressive stages of bipolar disorder: since everyone has been acutely depressed at some point they feel they can minimize others’ chronic depression. Regardless, ultimately the best way to figure out what is going on with yourself is to seek help. Which is also very much stigmatized. Sigh.

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My issue with mental health is my physical health. I’d be fine. As I said when I was a kid (when the gaslighting possibility was raised of my symptoms being psychosomatic), “I’m not sick because I’m sad; I’m sad because I’m sick.”

Physical health and stuff, if you want half a page of context.

I’ve got multiple autoimmune disorders that screw with my ability to sleep and leave me in continuous but ever-changing pain. Sometimes it’s here, sometimes it’s there, sometimes it’s both, sometimes everywhere. Sometimes it’s a dull ache, sometimes it’s a sharp spike. Sometimes I can relegate it to the background, but sometimes it flares up to overwhelming levels. Sometimes a spike or flare lasts a few minutes, sometimes a few hours, sometimes more. I’m constantly exhausted. My brain is so overwhelmed with all the extra signal from my hypersensitive nerves that I’ve lost a significant chunk of my higher processing power, to the point that I can no longer think my way through material that I used to teach. I can’t concentrate on anything for long.

Last time I tried to take a light courseload, I was sleeping 12 hours a day, doing literally nothing that was not necessary, and I still exhausted myself so thoroughly that when Mom came to bring me home a few weeks into the semester I was in the same mental state as when I’d been kept in twilight sedation to have my wisdom teeth extracted. I was aware of a bubble a few feet in radius. Nothing existed beyond that. I could respond to simple questions with monosyllabic answers. I kept a hazy blurred memory of the experience. But that was all.

Trying to force my brain to think through complex things just makes me woozy. I’ll start to sway and wobble because I don’t have the processing power left to keep my balance properly. I can’t read novels anymore because bringing the story to life in my head while remembering what happened at the top of the page I’m reading and also the overall thread of the plot is just too much.

As I said, my nerves are hypersensitive. My ears are ringing, I’m in pain all over, and anything that’s mildly annoying to you is actively painful to me. Bright lights, loud noises, high-pitched sounds, a friendly slap on the back, etc. You can put on a dab of perfume in the morning, shower in the afternoon, walk in front of me in the evening, and the lingering scent carrier chemicals will feel like a sharp spike up my nose.

In short, being diabetic is the easy part. Hardly worth mentioning.

The exhaustion is getting worse as I get older. I can walk a few blocks on a good day, but more often it’s hard enough just getting to the kitchen. I can’t work. I can’t focus enough to do a sewing project. I’m never not in pain, and never know how much pain I’ll be in a minute from now. I just try to find ways to pass the time without overtaxing myself until I can try to sleep again. It’s… not a life.

I’ve been to as many doctors as I could find for decades. They’ve done as much as they can. We’ve got a long shot to try. One more “This sometimes helps some patients who kind of have similar things” stab in the dark. Doc says to give it a few months.

I don’t have depression. I don’t have anxiety. I don’t have bipolar. I’ve learned to deal with things as they come. I had a mental breakdown as a teenager when things first got really bad, and just completely rebuilt my personality from the ground up using zen meditation. It helped a lot. I don’t stress over things. I choose whether anger is worth burning my energy or is better just let go. I enjoy the good things on their own terms in the moment to the fullest. It’s not for everyone, but I wish more people would try it. I see so many people unnecessarily emotionally punching themselves in the face when just stepping back to take a breath would hurt so much less. (Obviously, that’s not how it works if you have anything like an anxiety disorder. But it could work for a lot of people who get stressed out, angry, worked up, etc. when they’d feel better and be in a better state of mind to get things done if they stopped feeding those emotions unnecessarily.)

Anyway… I’m weary. And I don’t think it’s going to get any better. It’s not something that can be fixed by talking it out or taking pills. (I’ve tried the pills anyway. Some of them are supposed to be able to help with other things I have. They don’t help me with anything. I take my hormone replacements and my painkillers, but I’ve never found anything else that does more good than harm.) But there’s still a mental health component.

Most of my friends have something going on. Anxiety, bipolar, ADHD, PTST, depression… some kind of combination of the above. Several are some form of autistic. I listen to them. I accept them for who they are and try to learn what they’re going through and how to individually support them. I’ve always had a knack for seeing other people’s points of view and listening to their burdens without taking on their pain myself. I can offer honest assurances without going into toxic positivity. I can remind them that their (mental and physical) health struggles (and the symptoms thereof) are not their fault and therefore need no guilt or apology. Ableism sucks, especially when it’s internalized. In short, I do my best to be a good friend and to help where I can.

I’m sorry that so many of you are struggling in so many ways. I’m glad we’ve got each other.

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I don’t have any diagnosed disorders, but I have suffered something of a nervous breakdown in the past (it was diagnosed as a “depressive episode”) that necessitated a week in the psych ward. Honestly I think it was the best thing to happen to me at that point, as I was fairly young (around 25 or so) and it ultimately got me out of something of a toxic work environment (I was active duty at the time and my commanding officer as well as my immediate supervisor were complete a-holes). I had a lot of stressors at the time, not the least of which was I was stationed 2000 miles from any close family members and, oh by the way, my stepfather, who was essentially my father in all the ways that mattered, was dying from lung cancer and my superiors appeared to not give a flying eff that I just wanted to finish out my branch detail and try to be stationed closer to to home so I could be there for my mother when my stepfather passed. To this day I hate the very mention of El Paso (where I was stationed) because of that experience. But as I said, the psych ward visit allowed me to escape at least the toxic work environment, even if I couldn’t leave service until a year later.

I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology as well, and I am the first person to advocate for people’s mental health as a result of that and my own experience. One thing that episode taught me was to find outlets that I could use to reduce my stress, and to advocate for myself when I find myself in a situation that threatens my mental health. I’ve also passed along that advice at every opportunity to younger people in my field of work; I think it’s important to make sure people know they have to be their own advocate when it comes to mental health, and to fight for it so they don’t burn out entirely and collapse. All too often people feel like they have to tough it out when they don’t; they have resources available. They just have to look for them a bit.

To everyone dealing with issues here; I’m glad we can be here for you, even if it’s just a sympathetic anonymous shoulder to cry on or vent to. I hope to always be able to provide that to those who need it.

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God knows the last few months have been hard as hell and full of loss and grief for me.

Unfortunately a key lesson I’ve learned in life (that has been recently reinforced) is that that being open and honest about yourself is not safe and this information will almost certainly be used against you later.

People will jump at the opportunity to write a person off as “crazy” and dismiss everything they have to say, even if what they say is accurate. The gaslighting involved in doing this is atrocious (and gaslighting is btw form of abuse!).

I want to encourage people here to talk, but with a hearty dose of “be really careful.” You don’t know who you can trust, including here on these forums, and bad actors will take advantage of anything you say to put you down later when they feel the need to put you down (whether this is malicious or not). Our mental health discussions can - and almost certainly will - be used to dismiss legitimate concerns when they arise. Standard ableism - write off a person as just “crazy,” then you can ignore what they have to say.

I just urge everyone to please be cautious and share here with the expectation that this information may very well be used against you to dismiss and trivilaize what you have to say later on.

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No diagnoses here. But my marriage is probably falling apart. I’ve been planning it for a couple years now, waiting for the “right” time to strike. It came to a head Saturday morning when he did his fun little “FREAK OUT” about the dumbest things on the planet. We were heading out on a trip and he was looking for a spare cord to charge his phone. I said, I think it’s in the glove in the little case with the registration etc. It was an older cord that doesn’t fit his phone. He said “No problem, I’ll just use mine” So I take the cord from him and the little case to put everything back away, and so he can get his cord…and…he…loses…his…f***ing…MIND! Flung his favorite water bottle onto the driveway smashing it all up, etc etc.

I told him go to his mom’s on his own, I don’t want to go…but no…he insists that I go. Why? I have no idea! Seems it would be a nice break from me and my utter annoyance to his existence. Ugh…so finally I snap. Tell him that it’s been completely unhappy for me for the past 2-3 years, he’s got anger problems that are way out of control, drinking problems that are way out of control. He’s sneaking booze. When he was hospitalized about a year ago for a kidney stone, he was getting the dang DTs, level of usage at this point.

So I give him a couple days to think about stuff…he processes really slow and doesn’t do emotional stuff well. I press him a few times, to see if he wants to talk. He’s still “thinking about stuff” whatever that means. Typically this scenario goes: I Do something inane he freaks out, we argue, I, inevitably have to just “pretend that didn’t happen” and we just carry on with our existence like it never happened.

So definitely some situational depression going on. I, actually stopped drinking, for the most part, one of us needs to be sober. Plus I was pretty much self-medicating with the booze to help deal with the crappiness of the relationship.

Today was the “deadline” he gave me to “get his :poop: together” but frankly, I’m tired of doing all the work. If he doesn’t come to me and initiate a discussion about the relationship, I think it’s dead, Jim!

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I’m really sorry to hear it, but from the sounds of things, maybe it’s for the best. We’re attached to this antiquated notion that marriage is for life. It isn’t anymore. Sometimes long-term relationships just don’t end up working out and that’s fine. I think what’s important is your happiness, not your relationship. And I say this as someone who is in a good 22-year marriage. But if we were fighting all the time, if we just didn’t see eye-to-eye on life anymore, it would probably be time to end it. And that would be okay.

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Yeah…not like this is my first rodeo…lol. Second marriage for both of us. It sucks, but I think it’s inevitable at this point. He’s just not going to do the work. Which I think, speaks volumes.

I do appreciate the kind words. A lot of my friends have stayed away, because of his tantrums. I need to gather my back my people and lean on them for a bit. =) I will be ok, and I have nice people and some really crappy movies to help keep my spirits up!

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People used to only live for like 50 years, too. People grow and change. My ex and I are entirely different people than we were when we met at 20, and by the end we shared almost zero common interests beyond our daughter.

We did share a lot of friends. She got about 90% of them in the divorce. Not one of them bothered to reach out to me, so I’m guessing that I got trashed and they bought all of it. Some friends.

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Really sorry to hear about your situation Armetus, and however the chips fall, I hope you are able to stand to face them.

I feel incredibly lucky that both my wife and I were a bit older and had dealt with some bad relationships and family issues (depression in mine, alcohol use in hers) already in past so we were on a pretty solid foundation when we decided to “make things official.” While we had and still have a lot of friends and hobbies in common, we have always been open with the fact there are bits we don’t. That said our marriage isn’t sunshine and roses all the time, but we both have come from backgrounds that know fighting isn’t going help as much as talking.

We have also watched a number of bad break-ups and divorces, one recent one that really drove a bit of a wedge in a few friendships because of how close we were. Sometimes if the reasons to stay together are no longer there, trying to maintain things just makes things worse for everyone. “Staying together for the kids” I understand, but I have also witnessed a couple that said that but the best thing for the kids and the happiest I saw them was after the parents split. Not the cleanest split, but the daily routine for them improved immensely.

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My wife and I don’t really have that much in common in terms of hobbies, but we are on exactly the same wavelength when it comes to things like politics and comedy, so we do pretty well together.

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ideology we are on the same page. the difference is can enjoy long talks/debates on the subject, and she’ll be ready to leave the room immediately.

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Yes, sadly @Editor, we have not learned this prior to this relationship. I blame myself, really. I don’t have a good “picker.” I think I’m going to just be the crazy cat lady, after this! :laughing:

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The world needs crazy cat ladies as well. :slight_smile:

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I’m a divorced woman over 40 and… allergic to cats. (dies extra alone)

You’re all so very welcome here. None of us got to this point in life without sustaining some damage. But, you guys, we are MSTies, and they can damn well not stop us from making fun of it.

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May I suggest giving dogs a try? They’re less collectible, but they won’t eat your face when you die.

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A rabbit perhaps, they seem to be good for some with allergy concerns with other animals.

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Actually… :smirk:

All these years, I’ve known I wasn’t a dog person or a cat person and just extrapolated that I’m not an animal person. Turns out I actually love parrots! (Which belongs in this thread, as by all accounts bird people are crazy. Very on brand for me.)

I’m gonna take the plunge, but it’s a whole lifestyle and I have some getting ready to do. I volunteer at a parrot sanctuary in the meantime.

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That sounds awesome. :+1:t3:

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