I Feel Stuck.

I feel like I’ve calm down a bit since earlier but I was not in a good head-space. I’ve been struggling to get my final report written and my attempt so far has been quite poor. I might as well not have done a placement with how bad I am at writing about it. My parents are still on my case about my job that I got a few weeks ago and how I must go out and find a second job in order to have enough money to sustain myself when I live in Tralee for final year.

So 4 weeks ago, I started at my first ever job. I have been trying to get a job for the last 2 summers and have always failed no matter how hard I’ve tried. A lot comes at you with a first job. First, you are being thrown into an environment that you are not aware of and given tasks to do that you must learn to do efficiently and become aware of what you need to do and when it needs to be done. Secondly, you are given the quickest introduction to 20+ people than you ever have in your entire life and trying so hard to remember everyone’s names. Then the scary world or work contracts and money and taxes starts flying at you and you are trying to figure all that out. My parents aren’t making this any easier. I haven’t gotten paid yet and my parents won’t stop going on at me about it. Now, I think the issue going on currently is that I need to register for tax stuff and have my work contract fully processed before I will receive any money. I don’t know if this is true but it keeps my mind at ease. My parents keep telling me to go say talk to a manger about this but I would rather prove that I am a good worker and not just some lazy slacker trying to make a quick buck. I don’t like to talk about money. I don’t like that it’s such an integral part of living. It causes bundles of stress for far too many people and I would just not like to think about it if at all possible. I understand that I can’t live off my parents money forever, and I don’t want to. I like the idea of working my own living and not being reliant on people who care more about their finances than my mental health. The job I have currently, which I do genuinely like, doesn’t have that many hours for me, but it has hours nonetheless. So for the last two summers while I tried to get a job my parents were always putting pressure on me to go into down at every opportunity and give places my CV constantly, and give it to the same place more than once if necessary. The latter I find absolutely ridiculous. While I get some place might see that as being eager or confident, which is highly unlikely, most places will find it so desperate that they will never want to hire you. I thought now that I finally got a job, the pressure from my parents would ease off, if anything it feels like it’s gotten worse. I don’t know what they want from me. I’m trying. They keep telling to go look for a second job. They won’t stop telling me about where they see a job notice up. They don’t care where I get this second job, or how I find it, or how I get treated there, they just want me to get a second job and that’s it.

I think anyone who knows me knows that I will do anything to be in college. I’m always there even when people don’t think I need to be. Sometimes, whether I have work to do or not, who am I kidding I always have work to do, that I just need to be there. I know I don’t have the most horrid home life ever but it just makes me feel so down about my self and my worth. When I’m told that I’m not trying hard enough or that my parents are disapproving of all my time stuck to my bed instead of handing out CVs, it just makes me feel like I’m trapped. Towards the end of my placement, my parents kept asking me when I was going to be done, and will I ever be out of that place. I had a job to do. They didn’t care. I wasn’t just going to quit because they said so or because I had actually been there for the required number of weeks. I stayed there because there were tasks lined out for me at the beginning of my placement and I wasn’t going to leave there without finishing them. So all this negativity about me leaving my placement from my parents for the last 4 weeks of my placement, on top of losing my election which I feel I still have so much emotion pent up from that I haven’t let out, and then just creating a lot of negativity towards the people around me who have actually been a support and have been there for me through it all. I was in a downward spiral. I was really depressed. However, since I had a job to do and I needed to be in college to do it, I couldn’t have my time in bed where I could rest. You use up so much more energy when you in a depressive or mentally ill state that it’s just really hard to function properly. I had to put up a brave front for the last few weeks when I really felt I was going to drop to the floor at any moment.

I’m currently stressing myself out immensely because I haven’t my final report done for work placement and I feel like I’m the only one who hasn’t sent it in. My only thing calming me is that we were never given a specific date but I know I need to get it done soon. I think because of this downward spiral I was in, I started to push people away in some sense. I started trying to come up with reasons why maybe I should hate them. I don’t hate them. I think I just want to be angry about something that I had control over. The emotions of losing my election were too raw and I’m trying to evaluate how I’m feeling with that before I say something I regret. So I think I took that anger and pain from that and put it towards a situation where I could think for myself and maybe fix something in what I felt like was already a broken relationship. While I may not have handled myself with dignity or compassion, I think it was a turning point in one part of my life. I’ve started to broaden my mind more towards the relationships between my friends and I and why space is a good thing and I need to get over my fear of missing out over every small little thing. I think the conversations I’ve had with friends over these last few weeks have thought me a lot and I think I fixed some things so now this broken relationship has started to heal. I use the word relationship where I really mean friendship because they mean the same thing fundamentally, I just thought I would clarify to anyone who thinks I might be delusional and have manifested some romantic relationship in my head with someone. I haven’t. The more I think about a romantic relationship or anything along those lines, I just feel insecure. I know that I am nowhere near ready for anything like that and for now I’ll just poke fun at myself, because sometimes that helps me. I joke about myself, and many others join in on those jokes, which I usually don’t have a problem with. However, sometimes I just wish my jokes could stand alone. I make the joke, people laugh, we move on. I don’t think every joke I make about myself needs a series of jokes to follow it. I have the same issue with jokes of a sexual nature. I tend to get uncomfortable in situations where these jokes are rampant in a conversation. I’m okay for a bit but when it becomes the majority of the conversations and it goes on for ages, I start to feel anxious, bored, and like I’m not in the right place. From a comedy and intellect perspective, if you believe I have the knowledge to speak from this, when a joke or a topic that jokes are based off goes on for too long it loses a lot of it’s humour. I know that humour is subjective and it’s up for interpretation from every individual, however, I just don’t understand how jokes that go on for too long or go too far into the grotesque or disgusting, can still be found funny. From the intellect point of view, I find sexual innuendos and jokes in some regards to be quite witty and intelligent because of word play and/or linking something completely unrelated but yet relates so well that it’s funnier to us as we ask ourselves why we hadn’t made that connection before. As uncomfortable as I get, I find myself being becoming more bored lately of these jokes and conversations. I do think that is a personal thing though as someone who likes to write and loves intelligent humour, I find repetition of jokes, which happens a lot with innuendos and such, to be quite irritating unless done properly.  I think in realising where I am when these conversations take place and where they don’t has helped me a lot. So when I do get bored and want to experience conversations which are more maybe light-hearted or, you know, interesting, I can leave those people talk away and I can go have the chats with people who still make me laugh.

I’ve realised too that over these last few weeks, that the college is feeling a lot smaller. I find I have less safe/happy places to go. The radio studio and possibly the smoking area are the only two within the college I can think of at the moment. I worry about 4th year that maybe the radio studio might not be that place for me anymore. I only worry about from January on because all the 2nd years will be gone and I’ll miss them all way too much because they are the main ones who have kept me any bit sane over the last few months. Now with the current 4th years finishing up, I don’t know what my final year will be like. I’ve been friends with most of them since 2015, and while I might not have talked to them as much lately because they’ve been so busy, I will miss so much not having them around anymore.

So the reason I wrote this blog, was because I felt like earlier I was at my wit’s end with life. So with the stress of my final report, a second job, not knowing what time I’m working at tomorrow, not knowing what to do, I decided I would go for a walk. It was about 9pm when I decided this. I couldn’t focus on my report and thought maybe I need a few cigarettes and to get out of the house. The cigarettes were needed and so was the little walk down to Tesco. However, before I left the house I cut my wrists a little bit because my parents were getting on my nerves again and I was getting in my head a bit too. I left the house a little after 10pm. I had been in my pajamas all day so I had to get dressed before I left the house. I felt like I was getting dressed for the last time. I felt so dead behind the eyes. I’ve been keeping up to date with Coronation Street lately and they’ve been dealing with some really important topics at the moment such as the male rape storyline with David Platt, and the suicide and it’s aftermath with Aidan Connor. Both stories are so important and not talked about enough. First off, the suicide storyline is really poignant because it’s a very common thing for men to be quiet about how they’re feeling and keep it to themselves so it’s not obvious that anything is going on with them, which was the case with Aidan. So in cases like this a suicide is a massive shock and is completely unexpected. Whereas, if I committed suicide, it’s not going to happen just let me discuss this, I don’t think it would be a shock to most people because through these blogs I am quite open about a lot of how I’m feeling and how I’ve felt in the past. The only people who may be shocked would be my parents because they are so oblivious to any signals and they still stigmatize mental illness and see it as a thing to keep quiet about, they were confused when I went to therapy and didn’t really want to know much about it. I’m not trying to prioritize my story, I’m just contrasting and comparing how stories where there is this open discussion and where there is no discussion. In terms of the male rape storyline then, it shows David’s emotions quite clearly and if anyone was going to kill themselves you would have thought it would have been him but while he was close to doing so he now realises the importance of opening up and how he wants to live. You don’t often hear about male victims of rape so right now Coronation Street is really bringing topics of great importance to light that people need to be more aware of and feel more open to discussing.

Hopefully, now that I’ve written this, my head will be a bit clearer and I will be able to write my final report tomorrow. I hope to get it done by Monday if at all possible. I just want to remove some stress from my life and that is a big cause of stress at the moment.

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Self-Careathon: Bravery

I have never really seen myself as brave. I’m sure there is some of you who will strongly disagree with me. I’ve been told that I’m brave at multiple times in my life and while I understand my actions may have been brave I’ve never felt it. I got told when I first came out that I was brave and that it took a lot of courage. I came out during an online discussion around the marriage equality referendum. I did this in order to highlight how the no side comments, in some regards, made it really difficult for someone like me, who at the time identified as questioning, to accept myself and continue to explore my own feelings of attraction in fear that I would be putting myself at the forefront and a target for backlash and negativity. I was told that I was brave. What about the people who have faced ridicule all their life and some who ended their life because they couldn’t see how they could live a world that criticised them based on who they fell in love with? At that point in time, I hadn’t dealt with any of that and to this day haven’t received much negativity towards my sexuality. They are the ones who are brave, not me. They have had to fight a battle that I am nowhere near to facing. I am not brave. I am lucky. Lucky, that I don’t fit into any generic stereotype. Lucky, that I live in a world where I have resources I can use if I ever feel attacked because of my sexuality, where I can find people like me and we can support each other publicly. 

I’ve been seen of as brave through my struggles with my mental health. While I have overcome a lot, my journey of recovery has more so been lead by fear rather than trying to care for myself. While I do care about myself, to an extent, it has never been the driving force behind bettering myself. I easily could have let myself get worse and worse, not fix it and eventually just end it all. However, I always kept pushing back my literal deadline.  It became a waiting game. Waiting until I was old enough to do it quick and painlessly,not living under my parents roof. Waiting to see if things get better in my life and there is something worth living for. Waiting to see if I would ever stop being scared. The reason I say my recovery is based more on fear is because I’ve only ever had a handful of good things in my life and I live in constant fear of losing those things. I lost friends at the start of secondary school who I had had for years, because I was just a big ball of negativity and neediness and no one could stand to be around me anymore. I got more quiet, practically mute unless forced to speak. By the end of secondary school, I had zero interests. I had no hobbies or anything that I liked to do. Nothing excited me, I wasn’t doing anything when I wasn’t at school, I felt empty. I did start making friends in 5th and 6th year but due to the downward spiral I was in, their positive impact on my life could only help me in some ways and not in everything. 

I picked the course I am currently in because I remembered that I used to like TV shows and films. I remembered how I enjoyed the way stories were told and how they were written. That was only a memory, I had little to zero interest in that stuff at the time but it was still more interest than I had in anything else. Everything just felt so boring and dull. Life was completely drained of all colour.  When I got to college, I think the newfound sense of freedom began to excite me. I had a fresh start. I knew no one. Through the experiences I had in my first year at college, I began to feel happy again. I felt like I had a purpose. I began to have interests again. Most importantly, I began to care again. In second year, I noticed I was feeling bad again except this time it wasn’t because of anything going bad in my life, it was all things going on in my head. I feared I would lose friends again and I didn’t know if I could handle going through that a second time. After every awkward interaction or times where I was super negative towards a friend, I felt guilty and harmed myself as a punishment. Sometimes it would depend on the person and/or how they reacted or didn’t react to the interaction. I think I have such strong emotions attached to friendships because I feel like they give me a sense of security and acceptance that I have craved my whole life. I fear jeopardising that. 

However, what I’m only beginning to learn lately, is the fact that I focus too much and put too much effort into friendships that are one-sided. If someone doesn’t care about you and doesn’t take the time to ask how you are, especially when you are always ask them, maybe it’s time to take a step back. I don’t think you need to jump straight to “they’re a toxic person and I need to cut them out of my life to be happy”. A break, though, might be needed. I know myself I spent enough time waiting for friends like the ones I have now, I shouldn’t have to waste anymore time waiting. Instead, I need to focus on appreciating the friends who make the effort and pay attention. They don’t have to avidly pay attention but if they notice something is up with me, they ask me if I’m alright and not ignore my change in behaviour and see it as a problem for another day. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about moments where people showed they cared and while I had appreciated these moments are the time I kept making them seem minor in my mind. I kept thinking “that was lovely, why can’t these other people in my life be the same?”  I need to stop doing that because those moments were so important to me and they did come from people I cared about so I shouldn’t hold others up to that standard and if they don’t care as much I should just leave them off and get on with my life. 

A moment in particular that I keep thinking about lately happened last year when I lived in Tralee. I spent a lot of last year very drained and depressed so whenever I was at my accommodation, particularly in second semester, I would go straight up to my room and spend the evening in bed. One night when I was in bed a bit early, trying to go to sleep,  I was feeling so down and tired. Then, I heard a knock on the door of my bedroom. I had the door locked, for once, and I didn’t want to get up so I was just like “What do you want?”  My housemate asked me if I was coming down for a rollie, to which I replied that no I wasn’t. I heard her walk away from the door a bit before she came back and was like “Any chance you have any filters?” I reluctantly got out of bed and told her to hold on for a minute. I tried to find my filters in my bag without turning on the lights but when I couldn’t find them I turned the light on, found them, and then unlocked the door. I opened the door and gave them to her and she asked me if I was alright. I was like “Honestly, no I’m not.” She then asked me did I want a hug. To which I accepted because genuinely I think I really needed one. After she hugged me she said “Look, I might not always understand or be able to help but if you ever want to talk to me about anything, I’m always here.” I replied with a smile and I think I said thank you. She then hugged me again because she said it looked like I needed it. I then went down and had a rollie with her. When I went back to bed then I felt so much happier. That moment is one of the very few genuine moments I’ve ever had of someone noticing that something was wrong with me, without me telling them, and them asking me if I was okay. Now she is an example of the type of people you should surround yourself with. She always makes sure never to make a big deal out of it and will talk to me about it one on one instead of around a load of other people. Which makes it easier for me to talk about what’s going on and I rather talking to one person too because it makes me feel like I’m being paid attention to and not spoken over by anyone. It makes me feel like a respected human being. 

I don’t think that I’m brave for sharing stories or overcoming things. I’m just trying to get better. 

When I Wished For You

Last night I saw a shooting star,
I made a wish.
For the first time,
In a long time,
I didn't wish for you. 

I didn't wish for you to be mine,
Like I've done on my last few birthdays.
"Did you make a wish?" 
My mother always asked,
"Yeah, I did..."
I would sigh.

I would believe,
For a split second,
That my wish would come true.
That you would fall for me,
The way I fell for you,
Many moons ago. 

I did once wish on a shooting star for you,
Imagining you looking up at that same star,
Whilst it twinkled in your blue eyes,
As you would make the same wish about me.
Alas, I know you too well,
And that's not you.

I often wondered,
"Why waste this wish on what I know will never come true?"
I tried to stop,
I really did.
But somehow, deep down,
I always felt,
Wishing for you was never a waste, 
 
Because you are not a waste!
You are empowering,
You are thoughtful,
You are truly remarkable.
Every wish was worth it.
 
Eventually, my wish changed.
I still wished for you.
I wished for you to be happy.
A wish should represent the thing you want most,
All I've ever wanted,
Is for you to be happy. 

Last night I made a wish,
One with the same level of priority to me as your happiness.
I wished for my happiness.

I wished for my future.
This might sound insignificant,
But for a very long time,
My future was going to be me walking on the clouds above,
My future was never getting past age seventeen. 
 
My future is now bright,
Like a star in a dark sky.
I'm not saying I'll never wish for you again,
I feel like my wishes came true in ways I never imagined.
Nothing has changed between us,
Only now I realise that's what I really needed.

Quiet On The Outside, Screaming On The Inside!

Then: March 4th 2017

Original Blog Title: I Constantly Feel Like An Idiot!

Never in my life have I ever felt smart enough. I have always felt like I am just stupid and that everyone else is of a much higher intelligence than I am. For the most part this has been caused by people either outright saying that I’m an idiot or laughing at any suggestions or ideas I make.

A lot of thoughts are always actively racing round my head. It’s like my brain is training for the Olympics. It tries so hard to keep up that it wears itself out very quickly, and people wonder why I stay so quiet. It’s hard to talk when you mind is busy thinking about what assignments you need to have done, what time are you going home from college,  when are you going to stand up for yourself, when are going to start applying for summer jobs, you need to worry about this friend, worry about failed conversations no matter how long ago they were, worry about never finding love and dying alone. These are thoughts that run through my head 24/7 as well as a few more depending on the day and what is going on at the time. I know everyone has all sorts of things going on in their mind and they can handle it and ignore it. I can’t ignore it. Along with every thought there is an extra positive and negative thought that stems from each one. The negative thought always trumps the positive and thus I don’t know what is supposed to be good about said thought. With all this going on in my mind, I find it very hard to focus and concentrate. Whenever I try to read a book these days I can’t help but read the first line of a paragraph and then skip straight down to the end of the paragraph because I want to get though it as fast as I can because I was a slow reader in school. I would be going onto the second page of a five page story and everyone else would nearly be finished. The thing is I would have to keep re-reading the same part a few times because I wasn’t paying attention when I read it the first time and then I wouldn’t understand where the story was going and have to start from the start all over again to try to figure out what was actually happening.

Now: February 10th 2018

I decide to look at my drafts folder to see blogs that I had started but never finished. This was my most recent one, and either I posted a separate blog that was on a similar topic to this or else I didn’t feel this was worthy to post and left the topic alone. I got in the mood to write a blog and this one from last year brings up some important points and I didn’t want it to go unread. I guess the link that I would make from that blog to what I want to talk about now is that my mind is still occupied with these and many more thoughts on a daily basis. I can’t remember the last time my brain has been silent, it gets overwhelming. Since starting my work placement and being back at college after the Christmas break, my social skills have gone to absolute shit and a lot of my thoughts now are me constantly worrying that I will never be comfortable having conversations with most people ever again. I have been a lot quieter since being back and when I do speak it is nothing of importance and a majority of the time my input is not wanted or needed.

For once it’s not the disinterest in my input that is getting to me, I’m used to that I’m not the most interesting of people. The thing that is making me very anxious and worried is that I feel emotionally, mentally, and physically incapable of having conversations with like 99.9% of people I see on a daily basis. I feel like they all think I’m being weird or maybe distant. I’ve been like this before but never has it been a massive problem like it is now and also it has never effected me as much before as it does now.  I’ve kind of stopped making jokes and I tend not to pay attention to a lot going on around me. I’m constantly walking around and ending up in the same places hoping that eventually my social skills setting in my mind with flick back to what it once was. I’ve never been great at talking to people ever but I’ve definitely been better then I am now. I feel very trapped because I can’t really have a conversation with someone about this because that’s the problem. I feel like before I can even try to communicate with anyone I have to try and see why I have this issue and how it can be resolved. Otherwise, I would just go up to people I know and say “I really want to talk to you but your busy. I want you to make me laugh but I know I can’t make you do anything. I want you to talk to me and let me listen but you won’t understand the purpose of this one sided conversation.”

I’m not much better through texting or any thing that is typed. I don’t converse very well through that medium and typically don’t have a conversation over it but I’ve been like that since I started texting. Honestly, I’ve always preferred phone calls. They are more personal. My humour is very sarcastic so it’s easier for me to be funny while talking on the phone because in a message the sarcasm could be misconstrued as me being rude or bitchy. I also feel very comforted and more relaxed hearing the other person’s voice and their laugh. It just makes me feel a lot happier. In comparison to face to face conversations, I think I actually converse better over the phone because the pressure of them looking at me is gone. I get really insecure on a constant basis and I also really dislike eye contact. I’ve been wearing a scarves almost everyday over the last few months because I feel insecure about my neck and chin area so the scarf is there to hide that and also to hide some of my face when I feel embarrassed or nervous.

I feel like I might be going through an identity crisis too because I literally hate almost all the clothes I own. I also refuse to go shopping because that would involve spending money on more clothes that I don’t care about and might never wear. Every time I have gone into a clothes shop in the last year, and a few odd times here and there before that,  I have found one thing that I really like when I go into the shop. However, in the time it takes me to finish looking around and start to making my way to the till I have talked myself out of buying that item of clothing I had initial liked and some I even loved and I just put them back and walk out of the shop. It’s worse with my mother because she will make me change my mind quicker and I just want to leave the shop immediately because there is nothing there for me. I hate clothes shopping and anytime I enter shops like Penneys or TK Maxx I always just feel really panicked and stressed for the entire time that I’m in the shop and then once I leave the shop I’m ok again. Essentially, I have no idea what my aesthetic is when it comes to my look and what I wear.

In terms of my look besides clothes, I have been wanting to get my nose pierced for like 2 or 3 years. My plan was to do it for my 20th birthday but then other things became priority money wise and now I can’t get that done. I hope that one day that will happen but I don’t know when now. While I don’t think that a piercing has the power to give me a massive confidence boost, I do think it will make me feel more like how I want to present myself to the world. Not entirely happy with my hair either, I also had plans last year to dye it and that never happened. I did cut it not too long ago but I already feel like it’s gotten too long again.

I’ve fairly distant in a lot of aspects and from a lot of people. I think the issue is that I’m too focused on trying to decipher what my thoughts are all about. I have found myself saying to people who I see very often but not talk to as much, “I missed you!” I’ve said this when I’ve seen someone’s personality and/or humour in a moment that I feel like I used to see a lot more in the past. I do feel like this is appropriate because I feel like I don’t see these sides of people as often anymore. However, maybe they’re not the problem. Maybe I don’t miss them, maybe I miss in those moments, I miss who I used to be back in past.

 

So, I Had This Dream…

This dream has been on my mind constantly since I had it on Saturday night. Before I went to sleep that night I had just watched Saoirse Ronan’s movie ‘Ladybird’ so that influenced it a little bit.

My dream was set in a Catholic school, which isn’t too odd because I went to a Catholic secondary school and some of the settings were from my old school. There was a lot of little details in this dream that linked to that movie but nothing to do with the major plot of it. I had a dream about my ex-best friend from when I was aged 5-12. That was weird in itself and also what was weird too was that zero people from college were in my dream at all, not a single one of them. So the main part of the dream that I can still remember clearly was in our secondary school gym hall. There was something going on there and there was a few different groups on the court. I enter the gym and one of my friends from secondary school came over to me and was like “She’s over there.” From the beginning of my dream before I went to the gym, there had been something telling that I needed to go find my ex-best friend and somehow that led me to the gym of the school we graduated from 2 and a half years ago.

I guess some back story is needed a little bit before I move on. When I was younger I absolutely hated all forms of physical contact. Even among my friends and family. If a friend tried to hug me, I would push them off me fairly aggressively. They would all just laugh, it was my shtick to be this little angry human that hated hugs and everything good in the world. (Looks like not too much has changed there). The fact that they found this funny meant that I needed to keep doing it because to make them laugh was everything to me. If I didn’t push them off, I would let them hug me but I would keep my hands straight by my sides and not hug them back and wait for it to be over. It wasn’t that I was uncomfortable with them, it was that I was uncomfortable with myself and I didn’t understand the purpose of hugs. I guess I still don’t really understand their purpose but now I do like them and they make me feel a lot happier and safer which is necessary now that my mind is a constant source of sadness, fear and danger and I can’t escape that.

Anyway, with that in mind, let me get back to the dream. So I walk over to her and place my hand on her shoulder and go “Hey, how are you?” and she just says “Hey.” I kid you not I stand there for about 5 minutes with my hand still on her shoulder. She eventually says “You can either stop now and walk away or you can fully commit to this physical contact thing and fix this problem between us.” So I hug her for a while and then I think we both are really happy after that and then we start hanging out again like we used to when we were kids. Then I woke up. I was sooooooo confused when I woke up. “Why did I dream about her? What does this dream mean? I haven’t even been thinking about her recently, what is going on?” I thought to myself. So since then I have been trying to analyse this dream in the most literal sense. So maybe the reason I thought of her is because in reality I feel really alone again because I feel the need to have a best friend again, someone I can hang with all the time and be texting and talking to all the time. I also had recently been thinking about physical contact and my struggle to becoming more comfortable with it. I think it makes sense that this dream stemmed from my overthinking lately. Maybe the dream is trying to tell me that for me to be able to move forward I need to deal with what happened all those years ago when my best friend became my ex-best friend. Which, by the way, had absolutely nothing to do with hugs or physical contact. It mostly had to do with my negativity and how I couldn’t take a joke or find the same things funny or be happy about anything. I would always complain and to be honest everyone was getting sick of it. I still haven’t improved much, but since then I’ve been able to keep more things to myself in a way that’s healthier for current relationships that I have formed. I’ve also gotten more confident in making jokes and laughing at things that when I was younger I thought was too inappropriate. I was such a parent to my friend group when I was younger because I didn’t want us watching YouTube videos that were too inappropriate because I thought we were too young and I wanted to hold onto my naivety for as long as I possibly could. My friends obviously wouldn’t listen to me and hence forcing me to watch The Hangover at the age of 11 which made me feel so ill, it will forever be my least favourite movie because that’s when all the fighting between us started. I censored what I watched more than my parents ever did. I was aware of so much at a young age and chose to ignore certain things until I was older because nobody over a certain age seemed very happy and I wanted to be able to enjoy the few things that brought me happiness before adolescence and adulthood ripped that away from me.

2017: It Wasn’t The Worst, But It Wasn’t The Best!

As a whole, I don’t think that 2017 was that bad of a year. Like every year there is both moments of good and bad. I had my fair share of bad times but the good times this year made it worth it.

Before I talk about some of this years’ events in my life, I’ll reflect back on my New Year’s Resolutions for 2017

  1. Stop taking myself so seriously – I do think I improved upon this for an extent but not in a good way. I think I stopped taking myself seriously because I stopped caring about myself and what was happening to me. I just gave up fighting back for the most part because nobody took me seriously. My intention was to laugh more at myself and maybe developed a sort of confidence. However, the result was people laughing at me constantly and knocking any building confidence out of me.
  2. Focus on college – I think I did a very good job of this at the start of the year when I was in 2nd semester of 2nd year. I got two of the highest grades that I’ve ever gotten overall in modules. I was doing great, I passed my repeat that followed me on from the module I failed at the end of 2016. Even though that repeat should have made sure that I focused on everything after that. 3rd year semester 1 is where I really gave up. After the first month was over, I went into a downward spiral. I had no motivation or energy to do any of my work. I did manage to get every assignment submitted but I wasn’t happy with most of them. This semester has made me feel like a failure. Even if I somehow pass everything, I will feel like a failure.
  3. Learn to deal with being alone – I feel like I just had to suck up any feelings of loneliness or feelings like I was alone in the world because there was no other solution to this. I think I spent a lot of this year forcing myself to be alone because I started to feel extra anxious and a waste of space in any group setting. When I lived in Tralee I spent a lot of the 2nd semester up in my room when I wasn’t going out almost every Thursday night.
  4. Work on making myself feel better – I was trying to do this at the start of this year by going to the college doctor who had me on anti-depressants which didn’t help. Recently, I’ve started seeing a therapist after I got referred after I hit a very low point in October. I do think as this year has been coming to a close that I have actively worked on making myself feel better.

So I think I did a fairly good job there with attempting those resolutions but none of them were fully successful. Oh well, there’s always time to work on them in 2018!!

In terms of my mental health it went to absolute shit, which it also did last year so not much as changed their. I felt like I was fighting with others a lot more this year just as much as I was fighting with myself. It was very draining both mentally and socially. I really want to leave all that sort of stuff behind me because I hate confrontation so much it takes me a long time, if ever, to recover from it. I started cutting last year and while I took a 5 month hiatus I continued again in February about a week after my birthday. Not my finest hour. I have continued to cut myself periodically throughout all of this year with my last one only being at least a few weeks ago. Although I have no intention to do anything again, I was drying the dishes and cutlery last night and I saw the knives and thought “Maybe, just a little bit?” I didn’t do anything but I did want to. I have more self control than people give me credit for, when I’ve harmed myself things are seriously wrong because for the most part I can ignore the thoughts that are telling me to do that, the urges that want me to feel the physical pain that I deserve and to suppress the mental pain that I’m feeling at that moment in time. This year I felt like I began to bottle things up again. I stopped telling people the extent of what I’m feeling because 99% of them don’t care.  Today, New Years Eve, I felt a bit down today but just tried to ignore it. My only positive today was that I was able to smoke a little bit because my parents weren’t hear all evening. Until my father came home very drunk and being incredibly annoying. I can’t stand him when he’s like that, constantly repeating himself and not being able to think properly. Then my mother came home from work and complained about how shitty the night was. I couldn’t even ring in the new year without a heap load of negativity thrown at me just minutes before midnight. I happily would have rang in the new year on my own, but no I wanted to watch the RTÉ special on the television. So needless to say 2018 hasn’t gotten off to a great start yet but there’s a whole year of better experiences to get through yet.

I could go on and on about my mental issues this year so I guess I’ll recap some of the higher points of this year. These won’t be in any particular order just the order in which I think of them or I feel like they link. I went to my first ever Pride this year in Cork City. I wasn’t sure if I’d actually be able to go to the parade and stuff until like the day before because I was only going up to Cork to go to my first ever drag show which was to see Alyssa Edwards. The day of the drag show was fairly good. I got to explore Cork for the first time ever on my own. I knew fuck all about the city before that weekend. I also got to reconnect with one of my friends who I’ve known for most of my life but hadn’t talked to much in a long time. The night of the drag show once we got to the nightclub was a totally different story. It consisted of a lot of pushing and shoving mostly by a load of over-excited gay men but that was only the few we were around the rest of the crowd actually seemed alright. The only highlight of that night was that I was out in the smoking area and I made a friend. He came over to me wanting a cigarette and I gladly gave him one which he tried to pay me for. He then came back to me a while later when I went back out to the smoking area and asked me for another cigarette. He seemed nice. The 2nd time he stayed near me and we started talking… well typing. I learned fairly quickly that he was deaf. It was a very interesting experience but it was actually the happiest thing that happened that weekend. Overall that weekend was something I wouldn’t trade for the world but it was very overwhelming and I was not used to anything like that. So the day of Pride was all kind of up in a heap. I didn’t know what our plan was or what was happening. We walked in the parade while I was wearing my rainbow flag as a cape and had rainbow flag face paint on my cheeks. I felt so ecstatically gay and I loved it. There was a great performances on the stage where the parade ended but I was experiencing a lot of that by myself because my friend had gone home to get ready for that night where he had a show in a different nightclub to where we had been the night before. The night was fine. My friend was amazing on stage. However, I had my first ever shift that night, and it was with a guy. From all the horror stories I’ve heard of people’s first shift my definitely wasn’t bad at all. I still don’t ever want to do that again…ever. I don’t know if this was just because it was a guy, or because it was someone I don’t know and still don’t know. I have no idea what his name is and because he was so drunk he was taken out of the club by security surely after. The story in itself is funny to look back on know but it’s not something I want to relive.

I got to make my great, grand, gay return to Pink Training and since I’ve devoted an entire blog to this very recently I won’t go into too much detail about it. Definitely, it was the best part of my year. I feel like I got a little bit more confidence this year as last year had made me so much more confident than I had previously been. I had a better time this year knowing how the whole thing was running. It was also my very first time in Galway a city that I would happily return back to in a heartbeat. I told Jodi I had a crush on her and while that had been obvious for the last 2 years while I was keeping that secret she didn’t make me feel bad about any of it. Up until then, I had felt awful for having that crush at all. It was always the centre of any jokes people would be saying towards me and it made me feel like shit and I wish I had kept it to myself because having everyone know just made things harder. It made any butterflies or excitement about it get shut down immediately. While I knew that nothing would ever happen and will not ever happen, I didn’t see what was so wrong with imagining it. The worst thing was really when people brought it any interaction I had with her and making it romantic or sexual, like it got to a point where I just wanted to try and see if there was a way where I could come out as straight and put myself back in the closet and make people think that I made up that crush as a joke, just so they would shut the fuck up about it. I know this is awful, and that’s why I never did it. Think about that thought, I would have preferred to have been in the closet keeping all feelings to myself rather than have all these jokes and comments thrown about on a constant basis. I guess a lot of it was my own fault because I found them funny at the start, and always brought Jodi in conversation so it was my own fault. I never shut down any of these comments, I just kept it all to myself. As my actual crush feelings were going away and I was moving on an getting over it, people were always dragging me back and not believing that I could get over it. I’ve only been out for 2 and a half years and I’ve never really had many crushes in my life because I didn’t realise until I was 15 that I was gay. This was kind of a big deal for me for a part of the last 2 years and it felt like it was being belittled. At the end of the day, all I ever really wanted was a friend, and in maturing and realising things over the last few years I think that this crush definitely had more platonic roots to it than romantic. You can fight me on that all you like, but you don’t know how I’ve felt but I know you’ll make your assumptions and say that I’m lying. As of 2018, I want all the jokes to stop. Unless you are Jodi or I, this doesn’t concern you. I’m pretty much over this entire thing but I think I needed to go through that and have that battle of various emotions in my head over someone I was never going to be and never really want to be with in any way other than platonic. I guess I lied a little along the way and hyped it up myself more than I should have but I realise now that I was wrong and I wish I had kept my mouth shut. I’m sorry if it seems weird that I wrote such a long rant about this in a review of 2017, but I just want to stop feeling shitty about having feelings.

Now that I’ve ranted about that for most of this blog, I’ve completely forgotten what it was I actually wanted to talk about for the rest of this. I like 2017. It was cool. I’ve had some memories that I will never forget. This year was extremely frustrating though and I wanted to give up so many times and give up on so many things. Luckily, thanks to the help of a few people I didn’t.  So thank you to those people for helping me to keep going and making it to the new year. In particularly, the Students Union had been a massive help this year since about August, the time of my repeat, and throughout the last few months which were incredibly difficult and I don’t know where I would be without them.

This is usually where I would write my New Years Resolutions but I don’t know if I really want to write anything new for this year. There are a few little things but I think it’s mostly just sticking with the resolutions I made last year and try to keep improving myself. Let’s hope 2018 is less frustrating and filled with more excitement instead of anxiety!

Pink Training ’17 And My “Secret” Crush Is Revealed!!

I’m still on such a positive high even after coming home from the most amazing weekend that I’ve probably ever had. It’s hard to put into words how wonderful this weekend has been but either way I’m going to try!

Let’s start with my arrival in Galway, a place I had never been before. The city and the hostel that we stayed in were great and I can’t wait for the next time I get to back there which I have no idea when that will be. My delegation arrived to NUIG early so we had time to relax and register before most of the other colleges arrived. As a delegation, we went to the Sult bar and had a drink. I think the best thing about this though is that it was a good bonding session for us ahead of the weekend. I just loved how decorated the campus was for Christmas and it just made me love NUIG so much that I would actually consider transferring to there.

Next, we all split up and headed into our icebreakers which I was quite nervous about because I never liked it last year. However, I had such a good time and talked to so many people from different colleges which really helped make the weekend more comfortable socially for me for the rest of the weekend. Our facilitator for our icebreaker was lovely and great so I think that helped it a bit. Leading on from that then was the opening speeches and the Lip Sync Battle. I was so happy to see such amazing lip syncs especially since this is only the 2nd time they’ve ran this event at Pink Training.  We then went out and had a good time, the highlight of it being learning how to say “YAAAASSS Queen” in Sign Language. We were all kind of taking it easy drink wise because we wanted to being alert and not too tired for attending all the workshops on Saturday. To be fair, we actually were fine and made it into the college on time for the plenary talk at half 9 on Saturday morning.

So every year, the first of the workshops starts with having Coming Out Spaces for the various sexual orientations and gender identities, as well as a talk for allies to support someone who is coming out. I never went to them last year but I wanted to make the most out of my Pink Training experience this year.  This year it wasn’t necessarily specified as to what each space was to be representing but in the context of the whole I went to what I would consider the Bisexual Coming Out Space. This set up my whole weekend and I heard stories that made me feel empowered to fight against the likes of bi-phobia, even though I don’t identify as bi myself I feel so much more comfortable in bi spaces sometimes because as someone who identifies as asexual we also face similar phobic behaviour from people. I went to it with a member of my delegation who does identify as bi and she told her coming out story and that’s changed a bit of a perspective, don’t know if that’s the word I’m looking for, on my own situation. This being because, I’ve had a crush on her for well over a year and a half and her story made me feel liberated to tell her that about my crush, which I did that night before we went out, but I’ll come back to that later.

This got even better as I moved onto my next workshop which was ‘Too Gay To Function’. The two speakers we had for that were unreal. The whole workshop was extremely interactive and I learned so much in the way of positive coping mechanisms for stress and also I learned about the phrase ‘minority stress’ which I constantly have about every aspect of my life so while I was aware of it, I didn’t know what it was called. One of the ways we found to be a positive coping mechanism was through group chants. We banged our hands on the table to create a beat and then some said a word that we would then shout out a few times and then change to a new word. The one that will stick out the most in my mind was yelling out the word ‘penis’ a couple of times.

I then went to ‘There’s Something Queer Around Here’,  in which we heard about the first times people had heard the word queer and the context in which it was used.  I found it interesting but I think it was very drawn out because there was a lot of us in the room giving a lot of similar answers and that took up most of the workshop. While it was important to hear, it just seemed very long.

Next, I went to another bisexual workshop again because I’m all for fighting against bi erasure which is prominent both in and outside of the LGBTQIA+ community. It was called ‘What Does Bisexual Politics Look Like?’ We did a bit of a game where we had to pick answers to questions and it was multiple choice but the answers were all bisexual stereotypes and intended to sound ridiculous. We then wrote a bi agenda as a group which felt extremely necessary to create and it ended up really well.

Now, this next talk is one that is close to my heart and I missed this talk last year so I’ve been waiting so long for this it’s unreal. It was ‘Asexuality 101’ and I wouldn’t necessarily say I learned something in it but that was never my reason for attending it because I know a lot about the topic anyways. My reason to go to it was to finally feel the acceptance that my sexuality is valid and is real because up until that talk I didn’t have that. I usually just tell people I’m a lesbian because saying I’m a homo-romantic asexual takes too long to explain and no one believes it exists. I also like the fact that this workshop informed so many people about what asexuality is when beforehand they hadn’t previously known much about it. I think it made it more interesting that I was there with my friend from my delegation was there and watching her learn about these different terms and asking questions that she easily could have asked me but never did. Either way her learning about this no matter where it’s from is so important. Of all the talks she could have gone to I was so happy that she decided to go to that one.

After that wonderful workshop, I went to ‘Feelin’ Repealin” which was being given by someone who has been the main reason I am so involved in all things to do with the student movement and the SU in my college. I always feel the need to go to any talk that is in relation to Repeal the 8th because while I know a lot about it I’m always trying to be very careful with how I word things if I get asked about it and why I want the 8th repealed. The workshop helped a lot and I got some great merch from it. I feel a little bit more confident in answering questions in relation to Repeal the 8th.

Last, but certainly not least, I went to a workshop on Consent. This was really was also really interactive. I felt like I was in a good space, however when in came to the group stuff I didn’t really give any input I just sat there and listened which is always a lot more beneficial to me anyway in workshops like this where I only know definitions and such but not the actual actions of consent. I always thought consent had to be verbal but I learned about some of the non-verbal ways in which consent can be given. After that we had talks from Microsoft and from activists that were so empowering and amazing.

I’m going to move onto the Sunday and then I’ll come back to Saturday night. So we missed the talk in the morning because we got the campus a little bit after the workshops had started so other than like learning about queer history and hearing the closing speeches in the plenary, I was only at one workshop. I went to the ‘Asexual Safe Space’ which I think was kind of necessary to go to because I’ve never felt like my identity as an asexual has ever been truly accepted and/or acknowledged and it was important that I got that seeing as it is a major part of my identity. There was only 4 of us in the room, including me, and while there was one or two awkward pauses because we didn’t know what to say I think it was a good session. I shared my story about my news from Saturday night which I’m going to refer to as my ‘Pink Training Coming Out’, because I told my friend I have a crush on her. I also shared my story about how my Nan once jokingly asked was my female friend that I was texting my girlfriend and when I told her no, she said “Well, either way it wouldn’t matter if she was!”. That got a collective awe in the room and it’s really the only time I’ve been told that by my family, which I guess is fair enough since I’ve never come out to them.

Now I’ll talk about Saturday night, kind of, it’s more so going to be about me telling my friend I have a crush on her and how now after Pink Training this is going to affect me. So the two of us went out for a cigarette and if you’ve read my blogs before I’ve have a pseudonym I’ve used for her which is Jodi, and to make this whole thing easier to write I will be referring to her as that. So we were outside having a smoke and I said to her than when we get back to Tralee that I wanted to talk to her about something and that it was a secret I was keeping from her for almost 2 years. She asked me if I was comfortable sharing it at that moment while we were outside and since it was just the two of us I decided that I would tell her. I didn’t want to leave Pink Training really without telling her because I was worried that I would lose all that confidence and liberation that I felt from being there. I said “So for the last year and a half, well a bit more than that, I’ve had a crush on you.” I already knew that she knew because I would talk about her all the time to practically anyone who would listen so everyone our mutual friends knew but I had never made it known  to her myself. My main fear was that she would be like “Yeah I already knew that, and I don’t care. But now that you’ve told me we never have to talk about it again!” I was also scared that it would ruin our friendship and she’d find it weird. Luckily, that didn’t happen which I should have known because that’s not the kind of person she is. Instead she said that she was happy I told her and was really nice and cool about it. Towards the end of the night when we were all just kind of hanging around near the Christmas markets in our group outside the pub she did something which was really cute and I wish it happened when I was more sober so I could remember it better. She came over to me and gave me a really long hug, and said something which might sound made up but I do have a good memory and I do remember some of what she actually said. She said “I love you and you have all my heart.” Which at the time I didn’t really pay attention to the second part and responded with “I love you too, and I don’t say that to anyone ever!!” She said “I know and I do feel privileged about that”.  Also she rang me on Sunday morning to say she wouldn’t be into the talks until later and instead of saying hi she said “Sandra Moynihan, queen of the gays and queen of my heart, how are ya?” If there was ever I time I couldn’t cope with her, it was this weekend.

I had a talk with her today to kind of discuss the whole crush thing a bit more. I didn’t want to do it at Pink Training because I wanted to be sober and have a conversation that wasn’t going to be interrupted. I explained some of the struggles I’ve had to coming to terms with this crush when I realized that I had it, how it was sometimes the root to a few of my problems and left me feeling very down and unlovable. Sometimes those dark days would make me feel so bad that I had done things to myself that I since regret. Although she knew I had a crush on her, in the first few months of it when the obsession was real, I was doing things that she probably wasn’t aware had any link to that. She had a crush on someone about a year ago and was getting quite close to them and I was so angry but only to a minor degree was due to jealousy. I was angry because she wasn’t being treated well and it was making her upset which I really hated to see. In turn, that probably added to the jealousy a little because in my mind I was like “Why does she like someone like that? I wouldn’t treat her like that! What’s wrong with me?” I do know now that you can’t help who you fall in love with, the only thing you can do is decide how you’re going deal with it. I’ve always had a past of skipping meals, but this wasn’t always intentional, but when it was it was usually because I was feeling extra fat and wanted to lose weight but this method of skipping meals doesn’t help with changing anything much. I thought maybe if I was skinnier she might like me. That was the first thing I tried to change, but this only lasted for a few months.I also used to try and wear makeup on days I knew I’d be seeing her. I think I also tried changing how I would react to her. Up until I started trying to change myself, I would always laugh at every little joke she said because I either found it genuinely funny or a little stupid. I tried not to laugh as much because that’s doesn’t seem cool and it’s not appealing. I don’t really know what I hoped to achieve by doing this but it didn’t make me happy because I like laughing. I eventually got over that and now we are just constantly laughing all the time because we’re both just happy idiots with a sometimes stupid sense of humour. Something else I regret, and I will regret it for the rest of my life no matter what, is when I let my jealousy and pent up feelings get the better of me and I actually got angry at her. I couldn’t give her a reason for why I was angry without giving my crush away so it made it a lot worse. I think she thought I hated her and I was really giving out to her, I turned into a monster for a few minutes. I made her cry. I really upset her and while I can deal with the fact that it’s all over and every time now I re-apologize for it she says it’s grand and we’re past that, I will never ever forgive myself for it. That was the beginning of a downward spiral in which I was bottling up a lot of feelings in order to make sure that I never did that to her again, and thankfully I haven’t. This downward spiral is only starting to ease now and I’ll be starting talk therapy sessions soon with a medical professional so I’ll be talking about this a lot more and hopefully getting some ways to cope with it and get better. That’s not the only reason I’m getting therapy but it should be beneficial to dealing with this better on a long term basis. I know for the most part this crush thing sounds like it’s been a lot more bad than good, however, there are a lot of good things that it’s done as well. While never in these last two years I ever expected, or ever really wanted, a relationship to come out of this I liked the idea that in some alternative universe if it happened how amazing it could be. As unrealistic an idea as it was, it was always something that made me feel happy for a little while but I know I can’t keep living my life in the wonderful world of dreams. The main thing is that no matter what our friendship has never changed and only has gotten better as time has gone on. As someone who experiences a lot of social anxiety she’s always been able to make me feel at ease and I’ve always felt like I could talk to her about anything. She listens to me rant about everything on a daily basis, when everything sucks and I feel like everyone would be living a better life if I just ended mine, she reminds that I do have a purpose in life and that I am loved by her and so many people. She makes me laugh all the time and she makes me feel like I am funny which is my main goal in life and making her laugh is just a plus and makes me really happy too!

So it might be a while before I get over this, that’s if I ever actually do. I value our friendship more than anything else so I would never try and push anything further. Unfortunately unlike ‘Lush Life’, while this is a crush and I might have went and said too much, I haven’t given it up!! I’m going to end this with two final things and in the gayest way I know how. Jodi, I love you and I think you’re perfect!!!

World Mental Health Day 2017

So I wrote a blog about this two years ago when I was less than a month into my first year of college and before I go on I’d suggest that you read that first because it’s quite interesting!
https://sandramoynihan.wordpress.com/2015/10/10/mental-illness-take-4world-mental-health-day/

In the two years that have passed since then a lot of things have changed in my life. I know not only just have friends, I have a plethora of friends something which upon entering college didn’t seem possible. Although in that blog I do talk about my first real college memory. It was the first time I felt like I was part of a group. I didn’t feel too much like a tag along and I had one of the best days ever. The day that the college experienced a power cut is one of the most vivid memories I have at college. The amazing thing about thinking back to that memory is that I didn’t know then how much some of those people would impact my life, and impact it for the better. Like Dexter was the one who invited me to go with the group, he was sitting at the table with my classmate and I. We went back to his house afterwards with Jodi and, I think this is the name I gave him, Tab. I laughed so much that day I actually nearly pissed myself. I loved it and I’m so glad I have that memory of when friendships were just starting to form. 

The difference is that now, while those friendships are still there and still strong, I think, I seem to be on a mission of self sabotage and am trying to make a mess of things. For the last two week and a half weeks, which has been the aftermath of me going to the doctor, my mental health has been good and on some days even amazing. The few weeks leading up to that doctors appointment I was awful. I started cutting again, well cutting my arm again I was cutting my leg all summer long. I realised at some point just before I cut my arm the last time, which required a bandage, that I went back to cutting my arm because I wanted attention. When I say that I more so mean, a cry for help. I wanted people, or at least certain people because I always seem very particular about who I want to know about these things, to see that I was struggling. I was having a hard time and I needed support. Which I did get and am so thankful that I have that support, even if this week it might not seem like. Before the bandage incident, I had been discussing my mental health with the Welfare Officer and we had a walk and a chat which was lovely. She organised another one for the following week, which I was excited about because I thought it would be a regular thing which would have been great. Totally my fault that that stopped because said bandage incident happened and our chat got changed to her accompanying me to the nurse because I wanted her there with me. Then the following week I went to the doctor on my own, told her how that went and that was that. To be fair, I see her everyday and god knows after 2 years she’s sick to death of me and my constant mood swings and low self esteem. The reasons however that I wish this walk and chat, or just sit and chat because I do enough walking, was regular is that it’s something for me to look forward too. Again, I see her everyday I know but there is some things I don’t want to talk to her about when there’s loads of people around her. I guess I kind of miss how we used to hangout in the radio studio in the evenings and a have a laugh (why I am crying right now, I haven’t cried for weeks and weeks and yet just thinking about this gets me teary eyed in an instant). So that reason is from a friendship point of view. From a personal, probably selfish point of view, I just want to be noticed. Not just a nod in the hallways or part of a big group conversation, I want to talk to someone one on one to remind myself that I am an individual. I sometimes forget that I am my own person I just feel like there is an invisible tether between me and groups of friends that doesn’t let me stray too far from the pack. Any ways, I just want someone to acknowledge that I’m here and when they ask about my day/week that they actually want to know the answer and will listen to the few little things that happened. To be fair I have that person/persons to an extent. The extent tends to be limited by me because I’m afraid to start the conversation. Especially since I’m not a fan of texting and messenger as its not personal enough, how do I know a robot is contriving these responses through my online presence and what I’ve posted to the Internet in the last 9 years. I love phone calls its just personal enough where I can hear the persons voice but we don’t have to look at each other i.e. They won’t be watching me will I fidget with something and avoid eye contact with them. 

It might seem like a need I therapist and I probably do, but there is other things I need too and it is those very simple conversations that might seem insignificant to someone but mean the world to me. This week I’ve just been trying to avoid people altogether, I just felt really angry all day yesterday so I know if I came into contact with most people I would just yell  at them for no reason because I was filled with so much anger. I had to get Dexter to come out of the 4th year project room because the main thing I needed more than anything was a hug, and I knew he wasn’t going to judge me for wanting a hug which from primary school experiences I still feel like people will judge me for wanting a hug. I don’t want to build his ego up, like I tend to do whenever I mention him in these blogs, but I don’t think I give him enough credit for how much he helps me. He said to me yesterday that I need to trust people and that not everybody has some malicious hidden agenda where they’re intent on hurting me, some people are just genuinely caring/looking out for me. I think he’s the only person that I could confide in completely and not fear that he’ll judge me or think I’m weird in a bad way. He’s been the best friend I’ve made in this college and I wouldn’t have made it to 3rd year without him. Ok sentiment is over, he’s not on placement anymore so I can actually talk to him in person again, not that I’d say all this to him in person though!

Should I Tell My Parents About My Ongoing Mental Health Problems?

This isn’t a question in which I want your answer. I know what you’re going to say. You are going to say that I should tell them because it’s better to be open and honest about these things otherwise I’m bottling things in and keeping secrets from them. However, my answer would be no, I shouldn’t tell them. I feel very strongly about this and while no one is forcing me to tell them or telling me that I have to do it, I feel like there is a strong sense of annoyance/confusion as to why I won’t tell them.

My relationship with my parents has changed a lot throughout the years and the main thing I have learned is that they won’t find things funny the way I do and they have concerns over certain things I do. I get it. They care about me, they only want what’s best for me and all that shite. I used to tell my parents everything. Everything that happened at school. Every conversation I had with my friends. Every fight and confrontation I had. Everything I was feeling. I reckon I stopped doing this when I was in around 2nd year of secondary school so like 5/6 years ago. Sometimes they would be supportive and helpful and I might even feel better. However, a majority of the time anything that happened to me was my fault. When my friends left me, at the end of first year because they realised they didn’t like me anymore, I got zero sympathy from my parents in the beginning. That was the point in time in which I was most upset about the situation. They kept asking me what I did wrong. They kept saying is was up to me to fix it and I should try really hard to make things right. They couldn’t wrap their heads around the fact that I did nothing wrong. My friends and I just grew apart and we all knew that nothing was going to fix that. That event in my life has shaped a lot about how I am as a person now. How I handle and portray my emotions is always linked to that. The fact that I have the constant fear of that happening again. The fact that I do things that would actually now give someone the reason to leave me because I push people away because I don’t want to be hurt again.

When they finally began to accept that my friends were now gone out of my life and I was left with no one they started to go a little easier on me. I wasn’t blamed as much. Anytime I went to school, and still to this day , they would ask me “So, who were hanging out with in school today?” During that time and for the following few years the answer would either be no one, which they disliked because they want me becoming the loner which I did become, or else I would have actually been with people in my class that I got on with but never really connected with to a great extent. The second one made them happier because their child was normal, their child had friends or at least friends according to my parents. It was that point on that I went through my angst ridden teenage stage of “my parents just don’t understand me”. Which I still feel like they don’t but I pick and choose now what I tell them about. For me, this is a lot easier. If I did tell them everything that has been going on, I would be riddled with questions especially by my mother. My mother wrecks my head enough as is, I don’t need that getting any worse. She has this ability of making me feel really bad even when I’m having the best day. Either by giving out to me for some reason or another, or else telling me all the little things I need to do that have no real purpose. Practically all the reasons I don’t want to tell my parents about any of this relate to my mother because she’s the one that would just make this all a lot worse.

With that in mind, another reason as to why I don’t want to tell them is, their perceptions of mental health. My mother always says things whenever that topic comes up being like “Well thank god you and your brother don’t have any problems like that.” I’m pretty sure one of the times she said this she also then said “I don’t know how we’d cope” as in how they would cope with my brother or I having problems. As if, the burden is on them and they are the ones dealing with a mind of chaos and sadness. Anytime I have told my mother about any friends I have that have gone through things, she always have a judging look on her face and I think has questioned the odd time whether they are a good person for me to be hanging around with because what if it rubs off on me. What if I get infected by the treacherous depression virus or self-harmitis. I’ve definitely been told a few times to be careful around said people and to yes be there for them and support them but not to any massive capacity. I think my mother’s logic when is comes to this is that if someone’s mental health is bad they’re going to be that way forever so there’s not much help you can be to someone.

Even when I do nothing wrong I can still get in trouble. If I get home on the late bus from college I can get in trouble. I’m sorry I’m focused on my education, I’m sorry I can’t get a job to support myself, I’m sorry if I’m tired when I get home and are less than talkative. I have a life to live and I shouldn’t have to follow a set of guidelines that my parents have set for me. I’m sorry I can’t pass every exam I ever do. I’m sorry that I’m a disappointment and not going to go on to become some scientist or science lecturer in the years to come like my brother probably will as he will soon be starting his PhD. I’m sorry I chose a course that has no definite promise of a job at the end. I’m sorry I don’t have a passion for anything. I’m sorry I’d rather spend some nights with my friends instead of you. I’m sorry I want to live a life that is mine. I’m sorry that I’m me and I’m not more like this girl or this daughter of one of your friends who is going off right now to do great things. I’m sorry I want to write and probably not make money for a good couple of years if that is the career path I choose to take. I’m sorry I want to be so involved in the student movement. I don’t want to feel sorry for having bad mental health yes part of it is my own fault but not entirely. It’s been effected by an accumulation of events and moments from the last 19 years. I don’t want to feel sorry for trying to get help on my own with your permission. You just would have forced me to go see your doctor who I have never met and have no intention of meeting.

If I told my parents what’s wrong with me, I think my home would feel like a prison. They wouldn’t know what to do with me so they probably would be very cautious about where they would let me go and would probably make sure I was supervised at all times. I already feel trapped in this house at times, I don’t want that to get worse. They might stop me from seeing certain people because they might have influenced my bad mental health either because of their own struggles or else for no reason at all. You might wonder how they could control all these things but believe me they would find a way.

This whole thing might sound confusing and not make sense to anyone. This could be just one long ramble of nothingness but I feel like it makes enough sense and I can’t change how I feel about this and I don’t think anyone can talk me into changing my mind. If I do ever tell them it will be in my own time which probably will be another few years away yet. While I might not be the best one to make this judgment because I’m biased and want to assure people that this isn’t a problem, me not telling my parents about this stuff is actually better for my mental health. You might not think it does but maybe I’m just a pro at hiding things. I do it everyday! I don’t have the energy right now to stand my ground and defend MY feelings and MY emotions to my parents. They would try to fight me on it in some way and I just can’t have that in my life right now because it will just make things worse. I’d appreciate anyone who decided to read this not to fight me on this either. I don’t mind if you ask me if I’ve told them, but please don’t tell me that I should tell them at least not more than once. If you’ve made your point once, I have heard it, I don’t block these things out and I have a good memory. I will remember what you told me. I know you are saying it because you think I will benefit from it but please hear me out when I tell you that I won’t.

Should I Give Up?

Now most people are going to see that title and think that I mean giving up on life and while they won’t be entirely wrong that is not the main point of this it is only a result shortly after giving up. I have zero motivation for anything this entire summer. My parents have been yelling at me to get a job and to no ones surprise I never got one again this year. My parents thought I wasn’t trying hard enough despite making me go into town handing out CVs every few days. I did hand them out to a lot of places and I applied for a lot of jobs online yet I still got nothing. The ultimate reason as to why is because my CV is terrible and I have very little experience in anything because I’ve never had a job before. So that lead to my parents yelling at me more and seeming disappointed in me. I don’t care if they’re disappointed, I’m not trying to impress them. However, all the feelings towards me not getting a job makes me feel awful. I feel like I’m not good enough. I feel unwanted by the world. I can’t escape my parents anger towards me because I live at home and will be living at home for the foreseeable future. 

I guess it also doesn’t help that it is summer and for the most part I don’t talk to anyone outside my home. On the days when I would go to town, I would try my best to stay there for a long time to avoid going home. When I would get home the first thing that was always said to me was “Any luck?” I would say no and they would scowl. I don’t know what they were expecting, that I would get offered a job right there on the spot? It’s not like I have anyone around reassuring me that there is things I’m good at and not to worry. I don’t even know if I’m good at  anything. I can’t get even get a normal everyday job what’s going to happen when I’m trying to get work placement for January. I don’t even excel at anything in relation to my course, what the hell am I supposed to go for? There is a lot of things I like but someone is going to have their two cents and say that I have no chance and I won’t keep up that I don’t even know how to do certain things. I know a lot more than everyone thinks the only module I failed was tough on a lot of people. Still is tough on my as I struggle though the repeat. I have ideas about the topic I want but I can’t think of how I’m going to translate that into what I’m being asked for. It’s bringing me down a lot and my parents don’t understand what it is about. Everyday that I’ve been working on it they ask “Have you gotten much done?” I’m still on a research stage which is vital for my marks so it just consists of me googling  some things trying to figure out if I can base my project on that topic. Also I’ve only really been doing work on my project since Thursday because my parents have finally stopped badgering me about getting a job and are letting me try to work towards getting back into college which is the only thing I have worth living for. Even that isn’t enough motivation sometimes. I love everything about college but the end of 2nd year made me feel like shit like no one really wants me back so maybe I would be doing everyone a favour by giving up. 

I have zero motivation and I don’t even think anyone would try to help motivate me if I asked. I would expect them to say something along the lines of “Well if you don’t have the motivation don’t try to force it. Maybe you’d be better off out of college?” As open as appear to be about most things there is till a lot I don’t tell people. Like how down I really feel, the fact that I’ve gone a few extra days without showering because what’s the point it’s not like I’m leaving the house and how much I really want to talk to people despite the fact that I don’t communicate well via texting or messenger. I would call them but you know people are leading their busy life’s because they actually have jobs. Besides, they probably need a break from me anyhow hence another reason why I don’t message people much even if I really want to. I guess my main problem is I haven’t been doing much so my only topics of conversations are RuPaul’s Drag Race,Love Island and that I’m very slowly getting through Game of Thrones because it takes too much focus than I can fathom to watch it. 

I was reading a blog that I wrote about a friend who will be back in college for the first time since December, and it made me a bit happier having that in mind that I get to see him again and that I’ll have someone who’s always had my back with me again. So maybe for now that’s a good enough reason to keep going and to not give up because I’ll have that support back that has been a bit lacking in the last few months.