mckarlie

I have happiness in my heart and a thorn in my soul

Can you replace a Mother?

Anyone with a mental illness will know what it’s like to feel alienated from the people around you. I used to have a lot of friends, not real friends you can count on but friends I’d socialize with and other crazy endeavours. So over time I have learned to get along without many people to count on, I’ve learned that my man and kids are the only ones that I really can rely on. I have a best friend who would be there for me if I needed her, but she is heavily pregnant at the moment and occupied by that so I have been giving her space to sort all of that out. Even though I have learned who I can count on and who I cannot, I still crave this unattainable relationship with my Mother. The smallest slight on her part and suddenly I feel like that ten year old again, completely out of control and hurting, rejected and abandoned. I can be completely fine, having a great day and feeling completely on top of my shit and BAM, my mum cancels or does something kind of crappy and I’m reduced to this emotional creature.

Will I ever stop wanting a Mother? Will I ever be ok with things the way they are?

My Mum was a single Mum, she lived with her parents and had support from them but she was only 20 when she had me and ill prepared to cope with looking after a baby. She married a man when I was 7, she left him abruptly when I was 9. Her first husband sexually abused me. We have never spoken about it but we both know it happened. She met another man when I was about 11, he had moved in with her within a few months and a few months after that they were expecting a child together. He was quite nice for the first little while but soon enough he showed his true colours. He is an alcoholic and when drunk he would physically emotionally and mentally abuse me. My Mother never stopped it so I moved in with my Grandparents to get away but they ran out of money and ended up moving in with my Grandparents too. So i couldn’t get away, the abuse continued in my Grandparents home. I ended up getting on the first bus leaving spencer st station just after I turned 18 and I never really stopped traveling til I moved back to Australia from England 6 years ago.

My Mother had three children to him in three years, my sister, the first to be born…the day she was born I came home from school and no one was there. They had forgotten about me. After a while I went a bit nuts and broke the back door down, it was basically a show of things to come. My Mother established this new family with this man and there wasn’t a place for me in it. I was edged out because I was difficult and didn’t fit into her new family.

Now, my Mother and I have been speaking again for just over a year. Before that, we hadn’t spoken in a bit over 3 years because the relationship was making me crazy and she kept cancelling on seeing my girls and disappointing them and so much passive aggression, I just couldn’t handle it anymore so i cut my family off. But now we are trying to work on a relationship and I keep thinking that it’s just not going to work out, it keeps making me feel so utterly terrible, I don’t think we can attain a relationship that’s healthy.

My Mother runs around after my half siblings, my sister is 21 middle brother is 19 and the youngest turns 18 in a few weeks. She will pick them up from work at 3am or run around to the other side of the city to get a school book or what have you, fairly normal parent behaviour right? Well when I see this, it makes me crazy that she wont do a damn thing for me, it makes me crazy that she was apparently able to be a proper parent to these three people but not to me, why doesn’t she want to be my Mum? I keep seeing her doing all of these things for them and I can’t even get her to do a few tutoring sessions for my kids even though she is accreddited as a tutor and that’s her frickin job! I’ve been asking her for months to do some tutoring for my girls, I even offered to pay her normal fee but she keeps arsing around like it’s too hard. And recently I’d loaned her some money and then I had to chase her up on the day she said she’d pay me back and she advised me she didn’t have time to get to a bank to pay me back as she was too busy watching my brother play netball.

It now seems that she’s even more of a mother to my insane cousin than she is to me. My cousin was another family member I cut off when I initially stopped talking to my Mother. She is three years older than me and we were both looked after by my Grandmother when we were growing up so there was more of a sibling bond for a while than a cousin one as we were both only children and got along fairly well. As an adult I do not care for my cousin one bit. We spent a lot of time together and she is just the most negative, self absorbed abomination of a person that I’ve ever known. She married the biggest douchebag I’ve ever met, the kind of guy who started making good money from selling crap on Ebay and then would brag to people about how much cash he had and how well off he was. Yuk. He is a bully and a creep, the daughter she had when they got together is treated like shit by him because he has ‘his own’ children with her now and he admits freely to not loving her as much and this is why he treats her poorly, and he gets away with it. He used to love picking fights with me too, he’s just a really unpleasant man with double standards for everyone else. In the time that I stopped talking to my cousin she has been on a campaign of talking shit about me to whoever she can, I hear random gossip from mutual parties and the girl is just a sad case, it makes her feel better to think my life is in shambles and judging from the gossip I hear, my life is just a mess! Haha, but yeah she is an alcoholic and just loves getting off on my misery apparently.

My Mother always does something for Melbourne Cup Day, it’s a big race here in Melbourne and many people have bbq’s and what have you. I kind of knew that my Mother had planned something at her place because she always does, so I decided to poke the bear. I’m regretting that I did it now because I feel like shit, but that’s what I get for playing games. So yeah, knowing that she was probably doing a big bbq for the “family” I sent her a text saying ‘Hi, what are you doing tomorrow?’ then I got back, oh i was thinking of doing a family bbq I’m just waiting to hear back from Aunty Jane. Then another text – you’re more than welcome to come if you want. Then another text a few hours later ‘we’ve decided to have a big family bbq, you’re welcome to come after 1230 if you want to. warning you that your cousin and her husband will be here though’. Now my Mother knows I dislike my cousin and her husband, she knows that I refuse to have my children around these people, but her version of a family bbq doesn’t seem to involve me. She wouldn’t have invited me if I hadn’t of prodded, I was being passive aggressive and just wanted to shine a light on the fact that she hadn’t even invited me because that’s all i wanted, i wanted to be thought of and liked i guess. Feeling that your own mother doesn’t like you, it makes you feel like the most defective person on the face of the earth. If she doesn’t like me then why would anyone else?

So yeah, that’s my crappy situation and I really don’t know what I will do. My heart aches for a Mother, I just want someone to love me and guide me and want to be there for me like a Mother is. But this woman who is my Mother, she doesn’t seem to want that with me. I don’t want to give up but I can’t keep trying and getting nowhere. I can’t keep my heart open to this woman who doesn’t take care of it. I just don’t want to feel like such a loser anymore.

Peace xo

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How do you deal with conflict?

I analyze mine and others behaviours quite a lot. One of the hardest things for me is drawling a line between what is a ‘normal’ reaction to conflict or negativity, and what is a bipolar reaction. Sometimes I feel like an alien, watching the human population and trying to assimilate their actions and feelings and trying to look like just another person going about their business and not the bucket of crazy that I am.

There are a few bloggers I have had sporadic contact with via comments, some via email, and I usually find people to be interesting and supportive and lovely. Recently, a person who comments a lot on my posts and has always been very friendly seemed to take exception to something I’d written. It was a post about how I find that as you get older and have kids and settle down that your ‘dreams’ from when you were younger seem to fall by the wayside. I don’t believe I was whining at all I was simply musing about how I used to have all of these goals and now I simply tread water. She left a comment cutting me down, basically saying that I should be happy with being a mother and a wife and why isn’t it enough, some people don’t even have that and effectively I got the idea that she wanted me to be thankful for what I have and stop my bitching. It was unexpected, I’ve always found blogging to be a fairly safe place to share my feelings and thoughts but suddenly, this person who had always been quite lovely to me seemed to be attacking me for expressing myself. After her initial comments she then made another bitchy comment and when I confronted her about it she simply didn’t respond. I suggested that her issue she had was more about her than me and if it wasn’t she could unfollow me easily. No response.

Now, this kind of thing pisses me off and has me wondering. Did i just happen to fall into her bad day or are people reading what I write and assuming that I’m having a big complain about my existence? If I’ve given that impression I’m slightly mortified. Blogging has helped me figure out so many things about myself because I don’t hide here, it’s the one place on this earth where I can be completely me, crazy, silly, odd, opinionated etc – I can talk about being abused when I was growing up and how I love being a Mother but would like to achieve other things in life as well. I have found a lot of people through blogging who have had similar experiences to myself and have never felt so understood, and when you have a mental illness, feeling understood is half the battle won.

I’m not claiming to be perfect by any measure, I have a temper and sometimes I’m completely unreasonable. But I would never go on someone’s blog and attack them for expressing their thoughts and feelings. Even if I was having a terrible depressive episode and was feeling horribly sorry for myself, I would never shit on someone elses picnic. Now is this me denying her the right to be annoyed at what I wrote or am I right in thinking she was bang out of order having a go at me? See now, this is where things get confusing for me. I ponder and ponder, trying to figure out what’s reasonable and what’s not.

I’m not under the delusion that everyone can get along and world peace is just around the corner, but I believe that we should treat other humans with a basic level of respect and kindness and we should NEVER take out our own shit on other people especially if they are simply trying to figure their life out and have a happy existence.

My temper is worse when I’m manic, I’m probably at my absolute worst while driving. I’m a terrible person in the car when I’m manic, I get quite aggressive and people cutting me off or pulling out in front of me then going slow make me want to tear my hair out. I’ve heard from quite a few people with bipolar that they also turn into crazy beasties while driving, so it’s nice to know it’s not just me but it’s terrible. But when it comes to my person to person interactions I tend to try to avoid conflict. I believe that things should be addressed, and if you have a problem with someone or something they’ve done you should talk to them directly about it, get t out and clear it up. I hate passive aggression so much that I stopped using facebook, as I believe it’s a breeding ground for passive aggression, haha. Seriously, I couldn’t cope with all the bullshit associated with facebook so I packed it in. People having snipes at each other through status updates but never mentioning names, people being horrible to each other, it was just really unpleasant and I couldn’t be bothered with it anymore.

My way of doing things quite often gets me labelled cray cray. If someone is being passive aggressive towards me I will simply ask them straight out if there is an issue, and 9 times out of 10 the person will deny there being any issue, even though they’ve been making snide back handed comments that CLEARLY relate to me or a situation I’m involved in, I’ve learned that in your 30’s and for those in their 40’s, most people will smile to your face and then expose their true feelings about you when your back is turned, But talk openly about an issue and you’re considered inflammatory or weird. And it’s not like I’m looking for a fight, it’s quite the opposite. I believe if you address things and find out if there’s an issue by simply discussing it, then it negates the need for brooding. So many of us get upset with people and let it fester, we get more and more angry over an issue instead of just talking to the person about it.

Anyway, I’m curious to know how others deal with conflict and what your thoughts are on being open about things or just letting things go. Quite often, just letting things go is impossible for a person with a mental illness, so what else should we do? Hmm.

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It’s easier to feel alone

It’s easier to feel alone, it’s easier to believe no one cares and that we are destined to be held within our own shell, battling ourselves and never finding true happiness. For so long I was told I had depression and anxiety, i got my diagnosis just over a year ago, I’m bipolar. Being bipolar for me means I’m sensitive to how people treat me, how they respond to me, if they reply to a text or email or tweet or what have you. It means that sometimes I’m full of hope and productive, I believe that life is hard but ultimately worth the effort of trying and that trying is the only way to be happy. Then BAM, I’m on the floor in tears, empty, i feel like nothing tethers me to this life other than my children and if not for them I’d already be gone. I feel so empty yet so full of pain that the contradiction itself is a source of great discomfort.

I spent my twenties curled up in my own ball of sadness and madness and all that goes along with it. Not understanding my illness properly didn’t help, I hit rock bottom a few times and nearly took my own life, more than once. When I heard people say things like ‘it gets better’ or ‘talk to someone it will help’ i would instantly get my back up and roll my eyes, ‘stupid hippie’ ‘what do they know?’ – i didn’t believe anyone knew my pain, couldn’t understand my pain and had no interest in me.

I craved love, but when anyone got close to me I’d find a way to push them away, preempting the inevitable rejection from them. Not trusting that anyone would love me once they got to the real me, I suffered rejection as a child and couldn’t possibly handle anymore as an adult.

I understand why someone would put up walls, a lot of us do. I’m not completely without them myself, but I have knocked many of them down, I’ve started to let people in and started to share the real me, and it’s more healing and cathartic than I could ever say. I know it’s hard, but if you can just take baby steps and try a little at a time, share some of yourself and when you find others like you it makes you feel so much better. The fact is, no one is alone in their pain, there are so many of us going through similar things at any given time, and it’s when we connect and use each other to lean on that we start to win the fight. Big love to you all xo

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Bipolar, my 50 shads of cray

I’m having a depressive episode, the last thing I feel like doing is writing which is why it seemed prevalent for me to do so. It’s like the colour has been sucked out of everything. When I’m “up” everything is bright, I want to help others, I smile at the people who serve me in stores, I smile at strangers who pass me on the street. I write endless amounts of poetry and stories, I’m full of creative energy and bursting to share with everyone.

When I’m down, it’s like everything is a lighter shade of what it should be, greyish. I don’t smile at strangers, I don’t talk to people who serve me in stores, I get angrier when I drive. I find myself staring off into nothing for what seems like endless amounts of time. Everything seems like an effort, going to get milk from the store, taking my daughter to get new shoes, it all feels like WOE IS ME, and I then feel guilt over being so ‘slack’ – logically i know i’m not slack, I have an illness, but it’s hard not to feel guilty when I feel myself being so unpleasant, so empty.

I know it’s just a matter of time till it passes, I know it will pass, thanks to medication i’m not as low as i tend to get during an episode, i’m just numb. I’m like a zombie, there’s small signs of life here and there but for the most part, I’m just on autopilot trying to get through, waiting till I’m back up and can feel again. I feel like my ‘up’ self is my true self, that I am a happy person who gets a tad manic at times but for the most part my up isn’t manic, it’s just happy and productive. There’s no point in drawing lines as to where my illness ends and where i begin, it’s an impossible task, I can do so in my behaviours by analyzing and trying to figure that out but when it comes to me as a person, such lines can’t be drawn.

Anyway, to all who are feeling the same, I feel for you. Not as much as I normally would lol oh gosh is that a bad joke? You have to laugh at yourself sometimes or else you truly will go crazy. But genuinely, I know there are others out there feeling shitty just like me, I know there are others having the up part of the cycle at the moment, it’s all part of the different shades of cray, ha.

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Little Tree

I sway in the wind like a limp little tree

Watching as the world passes by me

I sink my roots deep down in the ground

Searching for things that cannot be found

Searching for something to heal my pained mind

But a limp little tree, such things cannot find

I wave around for someone to see me

I stretch out wide and high in futility

Silently screaming for someone to hear

And maybe plant a little tree somewhere near

It’s been winter for a thousand days

After a while you run out of ways

To find the things you need

To find the food to feed

But someone came and watered me

I burst with life and strength instantly

I’m still just a limp, little tree

But now I have some fight in me

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Can paying it forward help depression?

I think it can, yes. I have suffered from depression for 20 years, since i was a child. When I was younger I would accept my fate and just go with it, I wouldn’t fight it, why bother right? I’m depressed, the last thing I felt like doing was challenging myself in any way. I would just sink further and further into my own sad little hole of woe.

I would issue a challenge to those who are depressed and feel stuck in a rut, do something nice for someone else, take the focus off yourself for just a brief amount of time. The fact of it is, at any given moment there are millions of us in pain, there are so so many people wanting to end it cause life just hurts so much, each moment feeling endless in it’s grief. Now i’m not saying to live by comparison, as each person’s pain and each person’s story is just as valid as the next persons whether one seems more severe than the other, it’s all valid. However, by going out of our way to do something nice for someone else we are putting positivity out into the world, whether it be something very small like opening a door for someone or buying a friend a coffee or offering someone lunch if you know they’re low on funds, whatever you can do, do it. It’s so easy to get completely wrapped up in ourselves and our pain when we are low, but by stepping out of it briefly and making someone else’s day a little better, we are breaking the cycle. You wont always receive the positive reaction it deserves but don’t be put off by this, more often than not acts of kindness are a surprise and are well received.

So once a day, try one little thing for someone else, anything you can do without cutting into your own welfare or funds too much. I’m a person who gets a buzz from giving and sharing so I benefit from this more than some perhaps, but I still think it can help. Those who are bipolar like I am will know it’s easy to be generous and share when you’re ‘up’, but I’ve been trying my best to do it when I’m down as well, it really does help break the cycle.

All the best everyone, peace 🙂

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Not a bad day

Everything kind of climaxed yesterday, a few friends have flaked on me lately (real life AND wordpress ones) and things were very icy with hubby, it’s when things get like this that I tend to spiral, i end up in my own den of woe and instead of clawing up the walls (i got an image from labyrinth then for some reason, when she’s falling and all the hand face things are holding her) i tend to just let myself fall, into a pit of despair.

This time i monitored myself a little more, decided that i can’t control what my friends do and if they want to be douchey then fair enough, i think i’m a good person and ultimately they’ll miss out on what i have to offer. I spoke to husband maturely and with humility and we worked things out, brought it back from the brink. I’m still kind of bummed about my friend situation but there is something about me that drives a lot of people away, maybe i’m overbearing, maybe i care too much and it’s weird, who knows, i still have my good friends and very little could shake those friendships, so i’ll just be thankful for what i do have and try not to bitch out over what i don’t or could.

I saw a dermatologist this morning as i’ve had another flare up of psoriasis (happens from stress and during winter, went nuts when i lived in england) and he’s started me on UV treatment which i feel really positive about. I’m about to have lunch with my best friend and i found her a beautiful bone china three tiered cake stand that i think she’s going to LOVE, and even better, i went to pay $30 for it and it scanned for $20! Oh how i love a bargain, it gives me a weird little thrill, i’m such a geek lol but it’s true, it’s the little things, right?

So, as much as the depression is nipping at my heels and i’m certainly not as ‘up’ as i was a couple of weeks ago, i’m trying my utmost to stay positive. I see my psych doc tonight and i’m hoping he’ll increase the dose of one of my meds which i believe will help pull me back up again, i’m already on quite a high dose so i don’t know how it will go but fingers crossed.

I hope everyone else is managing to stave off the darkness too! Peace

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Not so merry go round

I’m in the throws of deep despair

I cry out silently but no one’s there

I can’t tell them what’s going on

I can’t tell them how it all went wrong

So I stay silent, screaming inside

In my own pain I bathe and abide

I want someone close but push them away

If I had the chance I’d not know what to say

Help me please, make me feel something other

Help me please, be a friend or a Mother

I just need this pain to end

I just need this ache to bend

then all of a sudden, I pull myself out

I’m positive again, I scream and I shout

I’m hIappy now and I try to help others

I’m happy now, you’re all sisters and brothers

I feel like I could fly, let’s maybe write a play

There’s so many things I can do in just one single day

The memories of pain they quickly fade away

And I feel amazing I’ve found my voice and words to say

Suddenly again, the sadness starts to creep

Suddenly again, all I want to do is sleep

If I’m not awake then I can’t feel the pain

Oh God it hurts so much I wont ever be the same

Just breathe, just breathe, and quiet the angry voice

Just breathe, just breathe, don’t make the final choice

So round and round and round I go

Up and down and round I show

On the not so merry go round

Will true peace ever be found?

 

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Bipolar makes relationships so freakin hard

I think it’s the bipolar, i’m sure within myself i see the grey area and am fairly open minded, but bipolar can make things very black or white. My husband and I have been together for 13 years, we have been struggling a bit of late, but the last few months have been really great. I have been trying my absolute best and hardest to make things work and he has been putting in a lot of effort too, but when something comes up and i try to talk to him about it, i get a brick wall. He turns things around and tries to make me the bad guy, i’m not trying to make anyone the bad guy i’m just trying to talk, but i don’t know how much more i can take of this, we haven’t been on truly steady ground for a while now and i wonder just how far down the rabbit hole i’d fall if he wasn’t around. But I don’t know how much longer we can tread water, something’s got to give.

I think my bipolar has affected me in a way in which I am going to be a lonely person, people don’t flock around me as i share my opinions too freely, i don’t edit myself enough i just say what i think, and i can understand how this puts people off side. i have a handful of close friends but there’s only so far a friendship can go, there’s only so much of each others shit you will put up with in a friendship, so yeah, i’m feeling pretty alone.

He’s sitting out there in the lounge right now with the kids, i can’t bare to be in the same room with him at the moment because it makes me want to cry, so i’m hiding away in the bedroom writing and watching tv. Surely my kids have sussed that something is wrong, we usually all do things together, i don’t know what to do.

I’ve cancelled plans we had for today because there’s no way either of us can put a smile on our faces and make it through a social occasion, we aren’t even talking to each other i don’t feel like talking to everyone else and pretending everything is great.

I wonder if i was born with bipolar or if all the messed up shit that happened to me caused it, part of me thinks it’s the latter and i get angry at the people that did those things to me when i was young. i get angry at my mother for letting it happen ’cause now i’m a broken human who can’t make relationships work and who feels completely isolated from the world. Anyway, just my rant, it’s best to get this stuff out.

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People can be so disappointing

I’m bipolar, so perhaps I feel things more than the ‘usual’ person would, but I tell you, i’m reeling.

I woke this morning to find a couple of text messages from my husband on my phone, when he left for work this morning he found that the guinea pig cage had been opened by someone (it’s a stiff lock and opens upwards, so was definitely done on purpose) and one of our guinea pigs were missing. My daughters each have a guinea pig, patrick swayze and chewbacca, and it’s chewbacca that’s gone.

Now, this may seem like such a trivial thing, so what, right? Well, my 9 year old is absolutely devastated. She can’t understand why a person would come into our property overnight and do such a thing, we have swings in our front yard so it was obviously a child’s pet, and it got me feeling really despondent about people in general.

Not to ring my own bell, but i genuinely try to put as much kindness out into the world as i can, and for someone to go out of their way to mess with my child makes my heart ache. Some people are just cruel, but why take it out on a kid? Mess with my car if you want, slash my tires if it makes you feel better about yourself, i can get new tires, i’d be annoyed but i’d get over it, but now she’s literally stuck to my side and between frowning and sobbing, she’s just not right.

If you know someone with a cruel streak, let’s try to start working on them. Let’s kill them with kindness, and try to bring everyone into the fold. lets not just call someone an asshole and move on, let’s find out why they’re an asshole, and if there’s any way we can help them be less of one. I’m tired of us vs them mentality, it’s not good vs evil, we all have good and bad in us, but if we as the whole of humanity start caring more for each other, maybe shitty things like this will happen less.

It’s school holidays, so it’s possible it was a wayward group of teens being idiotic with bravado, but fact is my man wasn’t asleep til about one and the cage is right next to our bedroom window so we most likely would have heard a group.

It has me a bit depressed about trying, about putting positivity out there and getting negativity back, but i’m indignant, i’m going to try EVEN HARDER to be kind and put it out there, cause the other option is getting bitter and putting more negativity out into the world and there’s already way too much.

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