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    Our forum members are people, maybe like yourself, who experience mental health difficulties or who have had them at some point in their life.

My life so far.

JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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It's funny how pathetic and selfish the accumulated complaints and grumbles of a diary can make you feel. Maybe that's how I could never keep one? Today's depressing thought of the day was ''maybe I'm just a real asshole and have the life deserving of that?''. Many people would agree. I'm not sure. I can feel that, strongly, at times. But I'm not well, am I? Just as I couldn't blame my aunt for being abusive with dementia I shouldn't blame myself for all my despair and self-interest when depressed. There's no point keeping stabbing when you're all bled out. It's just self-harm.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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I'll be my own doctor and psychiatrist. Today's lesson is: don't make self-judgments when depressed. Endure. Try not dwell. Distract. Attempt to counter thoughts that accumulate. Not always possible. Just try.

I need to start caring about myself. I'm certainly self-interested but I'm not kind at all to myself. It's all kind of exhausting. I'm decent to some other people but I have no self-esteem or self-respect and I don't know how you manufacture that. I'm not even sure I deserve it but I won't survive like this long term. I's just unsustainable and too sharp.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Family starting to get annoyed at me now because I'm turning down their various offers and just saying I don't feel up to anything. I'm a few days from ''you need to start making an effort''. I guess they just want to keep me busy.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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''You need to be making an effort'' has made it's appearance on the field, ably assisted by ''one day soon our parents will be dead''. I hate family being in this stuff which all feels very private and personal now. I now need to shift them away from it as I'm not ready for a daily ''you need to do this'' and I doubt the whole thing will be good for them either. I'd take that from a professional who is outside of things and might know better. From family, I just bite my tongue, vaguely agree, and secretly think ''I wish you knew less about this than you do''. People overestimate my agency in the whole thing. Looking in on something you don't live is very different to looking out from something you do.

Other news - my appointed CPN phoned. Marina is her name. I was starting to worry I'd fall through the cracks and be sort of forgotten about or just given some more meds and left to get on with things. I told her I was anxious about the idea of opening up and would just write stuff down in case it proved difficult (you might have noticed - my filter is way off and has been for a while so it's usually completely open or completely closed from me). I guess I should use this (with some heavy editing). Maybe transfer parts to some diary somewhere. It shouldn't be difficult. I've kept diaries since I was a kid. I never retained any as I'd destroy them after a while (they tended to betray my true feelings which tended not to be good) but I still made them in the first place so I guess I do understand the concept of writing therapy. I mean....whether it works in my case is highly doubtful...but I understand the need and intent.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Messages
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If I have a bunch of feelings that I can't express anywhere -- and this has happened a lot in life because I always seem to find myself with strong negative feelings that I can't honestly express to people without hurting them or finding they have no concept of living my life, and the best they can relate to it is how they beat their own depression that gripped them for three months when they were 19, after a while I become infuriating with my unfixability -- then they get written down somewhere. It gets them out in some fashion. They aren't gone but they are in front of you then rather than on your back. I've done it since primary school. Mountains of thoughts. Does it help or reinforce? It's almost instinctive at this point. Maybe all the retaining and hiding over the years split me and that's why I have this wide-open feeling now? Something definitely changed in my filters back around 12 years ago.

I keep thinking and looking for first causes and fixes but am I only digging a deeper hole? Do I have any choice at all? I don't feel like it. I feel like a paper boat in an ocean storm.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Feb 22, 2020
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Daily update. I never slept last night but felt calmer. Physical anxiety symptoms (shaking in legs) still present but lower. Depressed but not too sharp. Maybe good karma. I helped someone tonight for the first time in a while.

Eventually fell asleep in the morning. Awaken to a wasted day around late afternoon and back in to being really bad again. No specific reason just immediately back there. I've gone into full seclusion now. I felt a bit overexposed the past maybe week, and tons of shame and just feeling like a complete oddball, so I immediately started being a bit difficult regards (honest and genuinely meant to be supportive - yes, I feel guilty about it) offers from people around me to go to this park with them for a walk. I'd just rather not be on display at all. Here, I'm just a bunch of thoughts from a random unknown person and physically I'm a dressed man hiding under a quilt and turning through his thoughts, but out in the world....I can't explain....it just feels painful being around people when I'm so depressed, lacking in self-esteem, bitter, etc (all the bad stuff). That's generally true and very very true at times like this. I can't do the basic participation and offer a smile and ''fine'' when asked how I am and all the stuff required. It makes me feel very selfish in a way.

I'm so weak mentally right now. I think I tend that way generally of being shy, sensitive, insecure, avoidant, anxious...there's a bunch of words but really it just all seems like weakness to me right now, and there's a lifetime of it. I'm really hating it. It's the source of the anger that eventually comes and gets directed against myself. You goad yourself into action.

The other thing I'm struggling with is the concept of me as a separate entity from all the depression and anxiety. I don't know whether I should have the mental image of me as this separate, positive entity, that is engaged in a fight with some sort of spectre that are my mental health problems? I'm not sure whether it helps to split yourself like that. On one hand, if gives the idea that there is a you away from those problems and something to strive for. That seems like something I need but don't know whether it's true. Maybe I just have to face up to the fact that I'm going to come to a slow realisation that all my problems were self-created, that all damaging incidents in the past were really basic, everyday stuff, and that I'm just a really weak and bad person? That's not such a nice thought but seems truer, in the way bleak worldviews often do to me.

Maybe it's just not a day for thinking? Maybe I just think too much and niggle at myself too much as some sort of latent guilt complex for the mess of my life and how that impacts on others?

See what I mean? The thoughts go 'I feel hurt about...', then 'that's because you're bad or inferior and here's why...', and those just build and build. It's some variety of Hell that ends in me thinking I should have been gone a long time ago, that it was never okay and never can be. I need some other thought pattern because that's too dangerous and accessible.

I really need something positive in my life right now. I need so much help from somewhere and I don't know where. I'm not even entirely sure what it is I need. Something that builds self-esteem, self-respect, self-worth, dignity, gets rid of this ''I'm not really one of society because I was outside from early on and never really felt accepted by it'' feeling of otherness. The problem is, and whether this is on me or part of depression, I'm really unlikable as a person. I know that and feel it. I could list the ways (as I started to) but it's a really long list and the accumulation of it would seem like more self-indulgence. And work-wise, I'm screwed. Unless some individual in a position of management basically comes around and offers me a job then I'm not going to get anything (especially recently). That rules out the having my own place and space. Those seem like the traditional routes to building self-esteem and functionality. I'm not going to get religion. I reflex-gag at self-help stuff and hate positive greeting card quotes. I'm falling further into despair the more I attempt to think on things that might help me. I should try to make smaller steps.

Instead, I'm shuffling through the most painful memories I can muster, looking at all the 'I's in this entry and already hating it all. However, I said I'd track my moods and sometimes they are just ugly. I have to be honest on those days too. Tonight's bad. Even chronicling it feels destructive as my mind goes through the steps. There's a lot of nights when my entire thought cycle is just this, whatever this form of mental masochism is, or where it stems from. What a waste and no wonder I never get anywhere. I feel so bad for my family, just wanting me to be okay and I won't ever be, but they have to think I will.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Feb 22, 2020
Messages
166
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Scotland
Today was okay mood-wise (still got the night to go).

My CPN phoned. I felt a bit of skepticism as she explained some stuff. It all felt very generic and it looks like I'll be doing workbooks, tasks and having phone appointments for a while (covid). I'm trying not to think about it too much as a whole thing and just going to try step by step.

Bad news on the ebay hacking though. I got money back from the bank and thought that was the end of it, but apparently that was conditional and now I'm the go-between with ebay and my bank's fraud team. I know exactly what the hacker did but trying to explain to ebay customer service is taxing. The woman I spoke to assured me they'd look into it but I'm not sure whether she followed the part about the hacker would have had to change my billing address info to collect the items. I kind of got the impression she was just saying anything. They'll email me the result of their investigation, which I have to present to the bank. With any luck they figure it out within ten working days or I'll be £165 down and that's not easy on ESA. I suppose if I lose the money then so be it. It's only money.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Messages
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Scotland
Today, again, kind of average and okay. I'm now looking back at x weeks (past time is vague in my mind right now - hence diary) of (not the technical term) utter madness.

It's amazing how much easier life becomes once the agitation and anxiety, coupled with wherever the depression and self loathing comes from, dials down a bit. It's only when you get to calmer waters that you realise how violent and strange the storm before was.

Also --and this won't be believed due to the contrast with the ''shaking man in bed, hating himself'' routine-- but there is so much comedy and surreal moments in amongst all the black stuff and the gloom. It seems to come from the same place. Maybe I have some supernatural stoic reserve that dulls me instinctively or something but, once something cuts you open, it's amazing some of the stuff the brain then does. Mine's has had a rollercoaster few weeks. The speed it moved from mood Z to mood G, then back to Z, then over to I.....it makes you feel a bit mad, in an old-fashioned, Joker cartoon, sort of way. It's all very exhausting.

Tonight: not worrying about recovery, not feeling guilty at my effect on people around me, not feeling hurt by past events, not feeling inferior to everyone, not agitated and screaming into pillows, nor watching parts of my body shake for hours and wondering how consciously I'm doing it or why, not subconsciously making plans nor fantasising against self.

If I had more days like this I could be someone respectable, do things and not worry about validation from outside. I'd be a much better person. I mean, I'm not actually achieving anything (other than writing a daily diary - one I'm now looking at and thinking ''can I actually ever show this to anyone, given the extreme content?''), but I can sort of breathe easy tonight and just feel okay. I'd almost forgotten what it was like to be in these waters/ in this mood (I've developed a boat analogy somewhere - probably a remnant from seeing Good Will Hunting).
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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A decent mood but still not able to sleep. I'm now sitting up at nights and sleeping mornings. I suppose at least I'm sleeping; not exactly when I should be but can't have everything.

Spent the last few hours thinking about D and my reaction to her news. I guess I have weird feelings towards cheating, and casual sex or affairs generally. It's probably because I've largely been outside of dating, relationships and sex as far as the rest of society is concerned. I've spent 95% of my adult life single, never had a one night stand, affair, or quick drunken fling even. I honestly don't even remember ever being attracted to two people at once where my heart felt torn. I don't remember any interest in other women whenever I had a girlfriend. I also remember a series of events in my childhood that left me with the suspicion my dad had cheated on my mum (I was at primary school so I never got all sides of the story but that was my conclusion). That might have had a lingering effect.

So I really dislike cheating and affairs, even witnessing other people engaged in it. I realise that this is idealistic, possibly childish, maybe a result of seclusion, and is none of my business unless I'm one party in the relationship so, any time I've been around it, I've never said anything to anyone, but I have always felt bad for the other partner, whether the person cheating was male or female, friend or foe.

And casual sex I probably have a weird attitude too because I've avoided it all my life (more so been avoided by it). It wasn't offered that much, and less as I get older, but as a twenty-something I did find myself in situations sometimes where I'd basically just avoid it (and then question what kind of man I was afterwards). For a start, I don't think I have that spontaneity gene that sees someone attractive and can immediately have sex with them. I just wouldn't be turned on enough. I'd feel weird, would worry about not really knowing the other person, worry about my own feelings afterwards, etc. For another thing, I'm not that astute at picking up subtle signals so any approach to me would have had to be very direct, and that would have put me off even more. Sex for the sake of sex never excited me. Not as a teenage boy, nor an adult male, nor now. I've thought about trying to throw myself into it as a sort of means of normalising myself but the truth is that I'm not sure I'd want to. I wouldn't feel good about it and would just be doing it to not have the feeling I couldn't.

I'm not a puritan by any means and realise my peculiar feelings are a result of my lack of history. My faults are many and deep. I just have a slow heart and need my heart involved in sex. Add social anxiety and the end result is that I'm largely avoidant of sex, other than in a relationship or dating situation.

The vast majority of people aren't like this I gather. Boys, especially, are brought up with this predominant attitude of ''a boy, therefore will want sex under all circumstances, with whomever'' and if you aren't like this then something must be wrong with you. Most seem happy with that. Women, too, seem to be much the same even if they have a different stereotype to live up to. What I mean is....most people have affairs in their lives I think, and most will experience some kind of casual hook-up inside or outside a relationship, whether it's being drunk at the pub or club, or at some party somewhere, or even meeting online these days. I'm the oddball.

I spent my early twenties with a sex drive so low I questioned whether I was even straight or asexual. When I hit 30 something happened. Before, I'd had romantic attractions, they'd never been attracted back, I'd had chances to sleep with women (mostly drunken) and avoided all of them (even one women I actually cared about and was attracted to), and I'd pretty much just settled into being alone as a consequence of social anxiety, depression, unattractive, introverted mix of attributes. At 30 I was looking at myself thinking ''what's wrong with you?''. At 40, I almost felt like a dirty old man. I wasn't sexually active then (had been in my 30s) but the percentage of time I thought about sex was way up from when I was 20 years younger, despite the fact I was even less attractive as a proposition. It's as though it was mostly driven by a need to feel 'normal' and undo past wrongs.

In the last year I've started looking at dating sites; not to date (since cripplingly low self-esteem, no job, no money, no life, depression, anxiety, not too pretty,.........etc) but because there's a bit of me feels like it's something I should have done and would do if I had my life more in order. I looked at them with curiosity and a bit of envy maybe. I have to say though, they are so funny to read. I've kind of stood apart from people generally but they are fascinating to watch in different environments. I registered on one and got a message off someone about two days after the hospital visit. I had registered some weeks before and forgotten about it so a notification popped up in my email. I immediately freaked out, sent a message back about not being keen on dating and just the most negative thing ever. Then deleted my profile. I sense this is odd behaviour. Truth is, I'd been in observer mode, got a message, and then freaked as the actual prospect became a reality and I suddenly realised who I was and what was happening in my life. Obviously I can't date. I'm a complete mess.

I really don't want a future where I'm some 50-odd year old, with as much experience as the average 18 year old, and I'm just some desperate old guy. This is something I'll need to fix in my life at some point. I doubt I'll get the chance through the best way (a normal relationship that starts and then grows naturally), I'm really not keen on dating a lot or often, and visiting prostitutes isn't something I'd do nor would it really fill the need for acceptance (I can't imagine anything less sexy than paying someone to act attracted to you. I'd probably not be able to perform). So...yeah...I'm an idiot about it all. I have some weird romantic ideal and sex only really works through that as far as I can tell.

I was hurt by D and shocked by her revelations about her life but I didn't actually think I had any say in it. It wasn't like I mistakenly thought we were in a relationship. My feelings about her were that strong that if she'd added me to the web that is her love life then I'd have accepted. I wouldn't have felt good about it but that's a different thing. No, the hurt wasn't so much that her other guy was attached (if it's not me then does it matter?) but that I had a totally different idea of who she was. We'd spent a decade as close friends I thought, and I was completely honest and open with her about everything. She wasn't compelled to be the same back but I kind of feel misled a bit that she wasn't. It would have made things so much easier for me because if I knew she was having affairs a lot then I don't think I'd have built up the same attraction to her. But it wasn't because of her directly that I ended up in hospital. It was because I suddenly saw that the narrative about her being the faithful girlfriend from years back had been just that, a narrative intended to placate a man she'd briefly flirted with but had no interest in without hurting him (it'd actually have been much better). I then contrasted that in my mind with her tangled love life and felt really....subhuman is a tough word to use but that's what I felt. Then, over the course of three days drinking, it was all horrible self-esteem on that front, coupled with a feeling of being misled (even though I had no absolute right to know anything) which made me feel like a fool, always played, always vainly hoping for others. So that's why it happened. Not because I thought I'd been cheated on but because I realised I'd been thoroughly rejected on a really basic level and that I really wasn't worth anything, to her, to me, to anyone. Yes, I'm embarrassed at being so cut open by a thing which seems so juvenile but it wasn't so much that one thing as how it made me look back at myself. In retrospect, I'd been slipping for a while and had obviously put more hope into this than I was really aware. When everything got pulled away at once in such a surprising way then it threw me into a sort of shock. I've always thought I was a good judge of people and am sort of disappointed with myself that I never caught wind of this through so many years.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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I wish I had more mature feelings about cheating, either long term affairs or casual encounters rather than some childish disgust thing mostly driven by seclusion and feelings of being ostracized but I don't. I wish I'd had the same standard sort of life as others but I didn't. Everything got controlled by anxiety, and I kind of missed the boat, then felt inferior since.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Messages
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Slept through the afternoon. I should probably try to get back to normal sleeping hours but I seem to discover energy at night. I think I'm on longer than 24 hour days in my head as well.

Today.....depression 5, anxiety 5 maybe. I find it difficult to judge these ''somewhere in the middle'' days. If yesterday was a 6, and 2-3 days ago was 3 then I suppose I'm a 5. None of the extreme stuff today but I'm still isolating.

The biggest feeling at times like this when you aren't actively fighting your own feelings is loneliness. I spend so much time alone, just more or less living in my own head. I'd really love company (and preferably female, if I'm choosing) but I don't have any. I have family that I'm not really super-comfortable with if I'm being honest (my fault), and even a friend or two, but not near me, and not the kind I could just go and be comfortable and get outside my own stuff.

I do have things to do though. This room I'm in is a mess. I have weeks job searching to do. The grass needs cut. My workbooks came in from the CPN (and I've now sort of realised I'm going to be doing much of all this myself with just a telephone appointment in the near future...in essence, because I'm rubbish on phones, I'll naturally try to speed them through, so all this...if any of it is useful or amounts to anything....might never even be broached and I'll have to resolve it all myself). I'm still awaiting an email to further the ebay stuff. Even the dog needs walked in the next half hour. And I need to eat more. (I'm eating a sandwich a day recently. That's probably went on for weeks, if not months. No wonder I feel skinny. I need to physically remind/force myself to eat.) And I feel like I'm forgetting something so it's not like I have nothing to do.

I was looking at my gran's old drawings last night. I got to keep them after she died. At first, I had them all framed and around my room but that got to feel a bit ghoulish so I took them down. Over the years they've just sat in my cupboard. I probably only look at them every 5 years now. They are pretty good! They'd be drawn back in the 1930s when she was a teenager.

It's funny how time moves away. I never really valued time the way other people do. I was a misanthrope from a young age and had a cynical outlook on life so it always seemed more of a curse than a blessing to me. That's ultimately why suicidal thoughts are in me, I suppose. Time was something to be wasted and events were things to be endured. It's not a healthy outlook and doesn't leave much room for enjoying life. I know this in retrospect but I'd be developing ideas like this instinctively as a child at primary school. It'd be more of a case of choosing thoughts and beliefs that accounted for the reality I found myself in. It would quickly become self-defeating as a mode of thought, and self-perpetuating. I know these things rationally but I still don't feel like I was wrong. I felt honest and genuine. Always. I still do. But I think I built some kind of...monster is harsh...but dysfunctional person based on early coping mechanisms. That's my pseudo-psychologist. Back to being patient.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Feb 22, 2020
Messages
166
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Scotland
I seem to be writing a lot. I'm not sure whether any of it matters or will be read but, once I start doing something, I tend to get deeper into it so I'm now writing more.

Social anxiety. I've been the poster boy of social anxiety. I remember the feelings of a voice that trails off, red face, limbs that seem to seize up, being unable to maintain eye contact...the lot.

It also means I find myself in a lot of ''weird'' situations, where my anxiety almost becomes a paranoia. I can recount loads of stories; comedy falls in front of audiences, or getting the wrong end of the stick in umpteen situations and doing or saying the worst things possible. This one shows a couple of things. How anxious I get in situations and I develop a compliance to authority when under stress. I also find it really funny in retrospect because I find awkwardness appalling to endure, but often funny in retrospect. It's a little bit NSFW and graphic. Not much, but a little. I've also told about five people this and got reactions across the board so I might just have a weird sense of humour. Anyway - this is attempted humour but also a ''does this seem a bit off to you?'' question.

About 4 years ago (I think) I found a lump in my testicles one day in the shower. I'd never had one before. The next day (a Monday I think) it was larger so I phoned the doctor's and booked an appointment.

By the time the doctor saw me it had grown again and I basically had three testicles (it felt like). The GP said it was probably a cyst since it grown quickly, not to worry or even read up on it, and just to attend an appointment at the local hospital to get it checked out. He gave me antibiotics to take.

I never told anyone. To be honest, I was depressed at the time, and felt like I'd take whatever it was so I sort of wasn't even that bothered. A letter came from the hospital and my appointment was in x days (something like 12 so let's say that). I thought I'd keep it under wraps but someone saw the letter in the trash and I had to say what it was to family. They were more worried than me. My cousin had died a few months before and our family has a tendency for bad things to happen at once. My dad announced he was going to the hospital with me and I didn't seem to have a choice in the matter so just agreed. I wasn't even that curious about it so, fine, whatever.

About three days before my scheduled appointment I wake up one morning and immediately feel something is different. I pull back the covers, not a pretty sight - ruptured cyst. I swoon and just about pass out. When I clean myself up there's hardly a mark where the lump was. Even the wound is tiny. I phone the GP and explain and he says to still go to the appointment and just explain to them.

By the day of the appointment I have no visible signs of a lump other than the tiniest bit of skin inside. I go to the hospital, with dad in tow. In the waiting room there are maybe 10 women patients, me, my dad, and another male patient. In my head, I'm thinking they probably all have lumps to be....not sure of the word - scoped or examined. I haven't really thought about the examination yet.

A female nurse comes and takes a female patient. A male nurse comes and takes a male patient. A female nurse takes a female. Then the same again. By now, I'm thinking about what's going on and I'm thinking ''intimate exam so probably a same sex thing''. Then a female nurse comes and calls my name. I hesitate. She calls again. Okay, I guess that's me, so I'm following her to a room down the corridor a bit.

I'm now thinking fully about the exam. All I can think of is seeing a news report on the news at some point where they spoke about breast cancer rates going up or down and showed a five second clip of a random women, in a room at hospital, behind a screen, with a machine over her breast. I think the male equivalent will be the same but with the machine positioned further down.

We get to the room. She opens the door. I go in. She comes in and closes the door. I look around the room. It's empty, apart from a hospital bed (sort of more like a dentist's chair as it was raised) and a little table next to it, with a pc, and a nurse plugging stuff in. I think ''where are the machines?''. I'm still stood just inside the door.

The nurse that led me in says, ''OK, drop your jeans please''. I'm still looking around wondering where everything is. When she says this I don't really understand as I'm expecting to be told to go sit on the bed. She repeats it. I get really flustered and think ''don't be an idiot about getting examined, they're only doing their job'', so I just haul down jeans and boxers together in one pull.

The nurse that spoke flinches, holds up her hand and says ''just the jeans!'' and I think ''fuck, I just flashed the nurses''. Then I start thinking well I am here to get an intimate exam and it's all coming off anyway and, in any case, why am I doing this anyway? But I was so anxious by this point that I said nothing.

Everything back up. This time just jeans, down to ankles. ''Just halfway down'', she says. I'm confused but utterly compliant by now so it's jeans down again, this time around knees. I have no idea what I'm doing or why.

Then, with my jeans around my knees, she says, ''good, now hop across to the bed''. I start trying to walk but can only take tiny steps with my knees tied so literally hop across the room. As I'm doing it I think ''what are you doing and why?'' but I was gone by that point. Had she asked me to do the worm across the room I probably would have.

Now on the bed. Everything below the waist comes off. I'm now lying in bed wondering what the hell the jeans up and down and hop procedure was. I'm pretty sure I saw the two nurses exchange a look when that happened. Now feeling pretty exposed as you would.

The hoppy nurse is on my left. She's asking small-talk questions designed to distract me like whether I've had lunch, or whether I drove in, or where I stay. I'm giving her nothing but one word curt replies as about half my brain is telling me she just screwed me around for some weird reason.

The nurse on the right is looking at the pc and attaching things. I look over at this point and she has gel in one hand and an ultrasound scope (if the correct word) that looks like some kind of sex toy. For a second my brain went ''what the fuck is on going here?'' until I realised what it actually was. I apply gel, am holding parts of myself so as they don't touch that, and the pc nurse is looking for the lump.

It's only now I remember that I don't actually have a lump so I'm trying to explain how it ruptured, the GP told me to come anyway, it used to be here, etc. At the back of my mind I'm thinking ''what if they think I'm some weird fetishist that gets off on intimate exams?''.

After her looking, me myself using it where I thought it was, she found a bit of skin, cyst-wall I guess. I didn't need a biopsy thankfully. Didn't need anything actually.

The whole experience was excruciatingly embarrassing but I was prepared for it. It was just when the stuff at the start happened that I got completely thrown. Even walking out, I was thinking ''why did we do that bit at the start and what was the intended benefit?''

I'd love some nurse's opinion on this. I asked my sister, who is a nurse, and she just said they were probably bad at their job, that she'd have had some sort of gown, explained what was happening, etc. I honestly thought it was more than simply a case of my anxiousness though (I don't doubt that's a factor in everything).

I felt like they were screwing around with me for their own amusement and I get that feeling a lot around people. Even last week, when I got IDed for cigs (in a shop that sold me alcohol 30 years ago, no less), I wasn't thinking it was complimentary. Never in a million years do I look 15. I'm 44 and look it. So I was actually thinking ''well, what do you mean? you actually think I'm a boy that's got school tomorrow?''. I've only ever been IDed in that shop, and it's happened 3 times now in maybe 6-7 years so even there, there is a bit of me that thinks ''is this some in-work game or something? Let's ID some middle-aged guy and watch him get flustered as he looks for ID he hasn't needed in 30 years?''.

I have social anxiety that might border on paranoia.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

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Joined
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Messages
166
Location
Scotland
I also have a weird thing about people from my past, primarily from school. I think I (sometimes unfairly) resent them for reminding me of a time they seem to have fond memories for but I don't.

I've noticed a few times I have weird behaviour and I've definitely blocked stuff. A lot of the stuff I've already written here didn't happen and was then always remembered. It'd happen, be stuck in the box marked ''don't think about this'' in my mind, and then reappear fifteen years later through some weird coincidence or trigger.

My memory is sketchy and as though semi-suppressed. I've bumped into people I knew at school, had them say hello, and then had absolutely no idea of their name or anything about them but felt so uncomfortable about that when they've known me that I just try to go along with it. I did that once with a guy walking home thinking he was going the opposite road from me, then discovered we were going the same way and had 20 minutes of pretending I remembered things he was talking about. All I could think was ''I can't think of your name'' but it was too late to ask by then. It came to me at about 2am, three days later.

Another time, in a worse mood, a guy spoke to me in the supermarket like an old friend and I tried to be as gracious as possible but was probably odd. Inside, I was thinking ''how dare you act like school was some great thing to be remembered'' which is really silly and petty and selfish, but it was my honest feeling.

People at university I pretty much have forgotten altogether although, to be fair, I doubt I spoke to anyone after 1st year (again, very abnormal).

Friends, I've often cut off completely. I've been completely unforgiving at times. Not just with friends who I feel let down by but even just generally.

I remember being about 9 or 10. I thought my parents were splitting up and my sister had told me they'd be living with my mum and me with my dad. This didn't seem a great prospect to the 9/10 year old me and I was pretty sad about it. Kids used to notice when my moods were bad and tease me a bit (if not that then the ears or skinniness or shyness). This day, it was after school and I was at the bottom of the local park. I was on my own although maybe had been playing football earlier or something. I don't remember that. Down by the burn, in amongst a small wood at the bottom of the park, I was throwing stones in the water, just myself I thought. I must have looked pretty sad. A girl had been watching me that was in my class. I never knew she was there until she spoke. She made some comment and a little laugh about how sad I looked, slightly mocking.

I didn't like that at all. It made me feel weird and different, an outsider, and more so, a thing to be mocked even when in pain. I was only a kid myself but I thought then ''who even does that, and uses someone's sadness as something to beat them with?''. Anyway....I never spoke to her again. I just decided then that she was cruel and that was that. Through the rest of primary school, all of secondary school, even my out-of-control 18th birthday party that she turned up at unasked by me (along with about another 100 people). I just completely blanked her. That sort of unforgiving absolutism probably isn't normal. I mean, she was a kid.
 
JamesWM2051

JamesWM2051

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 22, 2020
Messages
166
Location
Scotland
Cruelty inflicted on others.

At school, age 17 maybe. Have completely avoided the opposite sex by this point. Maybe fancied a few girls but never so much as touched one (not technically true because I did kiss my friend when I was basically a child but we were about 7 so it hardly seems important).

My perspective of the dynamic in this English class I was in was there was a charismatic teacher, who tried to be funny and often succeeded but was also a bit sarcastically cruel and a bit of a show-off. At the front of the class were the more popular ones. I was at the back. My social position in things wasn't high.

One lesson ended and as I looked up a girl had appeared. I had no idea who she was. She wasn't from the class and I didn't actually recognise her at all so thought she maybe wasn't even in our year.

She mumbled something about would I want to go on a date with her. The whole idea of anyone asking me out, much less a stranger, and here of all places, where I was so low in the pecking order, seemed so preposterous that I was really stunned. Then I noticed a couple of girls down the front watching and sniggering and in my thoughts I immediately saw that they had found this girl from somewhere, got her to do this, and it was all for the sake of making a fool of me somehow. Maybe if I said okay then everyone laughs. That was the image I had.

I was kind of rude. I said ''but I can't, I've no idea who you are, I've never even seen you before, so...no''.

It was only then, when her face dropped, she looked down and walked out that a different perspective appeared. I looked back at the girls who had been laughing and they were now looking at me like I was a monster. The girl had gone by now. Who it was, I've no idea still.

Maybe it's a minor thing but it would have hurt me had I been in her position. All caused by low self-esteem and social anxiety.
 
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