Why do I feel so alone. Did I do it to myself?

Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#1
I’ve been struggling with mental health issues for years now and I was initially diagnosed with BPD after 1 session. I was given antipsychotic and then expected to cope eventually, I stopped attending my one to one sessions and taking my meds. I started a mood diary and analysing why I was having these ups and down. That’s when I recognised it was usually after some sort of traumatic event or in a period of emotionally turmoil. For example after I broke up with my first love, when my boss tried to sexually assault me, the first time I missed carried etc.

As time went by I started to do better and I went back to university. I got married and started to try to make friends, this was especially hard for me because when I was going through psychosis and at my worst everyone disappeared. It taught me to keep my thoughts and mental health issues to myself, even my family to this day walk on egg shells. I’ve never been aggressive but I have been erratic even attempted suicide at one point so I understand why they feel this way.

Since i’ve started this university degree 8 people have died in my life, my mother in law was diagnosed with terminal cancer and my mothers mental and physical health has deteriorated. I’ve dealt with it as best as possible, I couldn’t attend all my lectures although I kept my grades up and kept all this to myself except for one friend at university. I found she has been spreading rumours about me and telling everyone what I thought I told her in confidence but that’s a whole other story.

7 days ago my aunt has died, this was 2 day before my exam period (4 exams in a week and half). I was a mess so I spoke to my lecturer who told me to the sit exams, the university mental health team who said if I couldn’t do them they would support me and my husband who was worried if I couldn’t handle the death of my aunt how would I be in summer when his mother was probably going to be worst. Also whether deferring the exam would be more or less stressful because again we don’t know what will happen with his mother plus would the marks will be capped. So I’ve sat 3 of the exams so far it’s been horrible to keep myself together while doing oral exams, I only have one left and I’m already at breaking point. I’m not sleeping, eating, exhausted and can’t retain any information. I have asked help from my two university friends who i’ve helped in the past but they have disappeared except when they need a question answered. I also asked one of these friends to help to time me during a presentation she conveniently forgot so I was marked down for going over the time. When I ask both these friends what they would do in my situation it’s always the same answer ‘I don’t think I could sit the exam, but you’re stronger than me and you’ll do fine’. I have one more exam and I can’t face getting out bed and i’ve got a stomach bug. When will it get better? Am I cursed?

Plus now i’ve sat the exam my university mental health team don’t think I need support and have recommended I try to see a private psychologist. I haven’t been able to be close to anyone for awhile and usually cut friendships off due to the fear of having to disclose the abuse I suffered as a child and the general crappy childhood I’ve had. I carry the sense of self loathing and hate that makes me believe i’m not worthy of love or even friendship. Now I’m left really lonely and alone and I don’t know what to do? How do I change for the better so I’m not in this situation again? Why are people only nice to me when they need something?
 
Fairy Lucretia

Fairy Lucretia

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#2
hello ,i am sorry for all you have been through and all the people you have lost in your life
i just really wanted to welcome you to the forum ,i hope you like it here
lots of love fairy Lu x
 
D

dewey

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#3
Yes, the unwillingness of some human beings to understand or engage with the emotional suffering of others has always frustrated me. The selfishness of them not being there to support you when you need it. At the same time, there are some people out there who would be there for you, the rare gems of this world. Perhaps you have not been so lucky to stumble across such people, but they exist.

Your mental health problems and the bad things that you have been through are not your fault, but it really sounds like you are blaming yourself and making it your fault. An easy trap to fall into, but mental illness is nobody's fault, so don't be so hard on yourself. You should allow yourself to feel your emotions and validate the things you feel and the person you are, that's one of the first steps to recovery.

If you can get to see a therapist privately I'd recommend it. It's not good the University mental health workers don't think you need support, have you clearly articulated that you do need support? How negligent of them.

You say you started the one to ones therapy but you stopped going. It is very hard to stick at therapy, especially if you don't feel an instant connection with the therapist. However I would suggest you try sticking to going to say 5 sessions with one, to see if you are getting anywhere, because it is such a long term thing and it takes a very long time to work. But if you want a long term solution, long term therapy and making changes to your approach to life is the way, I think
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#5
Hi Dewey, thank you for your advice. I agree being invalidated has the main reason I’ve gotten to this point. The university were very helpful even going to go as far as to book a appointment in the following week initially (which I missed to attend the exam). The issues arose affter I told them my official diagnosis, they seemed cold and aloof and later claimed i’d have to be on a waiting list for 6 months or more so I might as well get a private psychotherapy. This was the same reaction my GP had after she read my history, she was really helpful initially then after she read my diagnosis she said ‘oh’ and went cold. Currently I have BPD and depressive disorder on my file.

I’m stuck in a blame cycle, I know these thoughts and feelings aren’t my fault but there is this voice in my head telling me it’s because I’m weak that I’m falling apart and other people are reinforcing the idea.

Will I know in five sessions whether I like the therapist or is it a instant feeling? I have tried private therapy before and the therapist spoke for the whole hour during three sessions, I couldn’t get a word in so I never went back. When do you know you found the right one? Or is that how therapy is mean to be? I’m sorry if the question is silly I generally haven’t got a clue.
 
G

Girl interupted

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#7
First, deep breath.

Second, Dewey rightly said it takes about five sessions to figure out if your therapist works for you. It doesn’t mean you’ll have some epiphany and be cured, but rather a sense of whether you feel comfortable with them or not. You will be working, over the years, on some very traumatic topics, and if you don’t feel safe, or more importantly, heard, it’s not a good fit and you should ask for someone new.

That said, your university probably deals with hundreds of students in crisis every year. They will take the path of least resistance because of financial restraints and limited resources. If the student backs off, or seems to self stabilize, they will then triage who seems most in need next.

Follow up with them. Explain that you are not getting better, that your fear of missing an exam led to self neglect and not showing up. Missing the appointment signalled to them that you weren’t serious, or that you managed to sort yourself out.

You have to be your own advocate for mental health care. You almost have to be pushy. But you also really have to want the help, too. If you get the help, dedicate yourself the same way you would a class. Make that commitment to you, and to the professionals who are investing their time in you.

You are worth it.
 
D

dewey

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#8
Hi Dewey, thank you for your advice. I agree being invalidated has the main reason I’ve gotten to this point. The university were very helpful even going to go as far as to book a appointment in the following week initially (which I missed to attend the exam). The issues arose affter I told them my official diagnosis, they seemed cold and aloof and later claimed i’d have to be on a waiting list for 6 months or more so I might as well get a private psychotherapy. This was the same reaction my GP had after she read my history, she was really helpful initially then after she read my diagnosis she said ‘oh’ and went cold. Currently I have BPD and depressive disorder on my file.

I’m stuck in a blame cycle, I know these thoughts and feelings aren’t my fault but there is this voice in my head telling me it’s because I’m weak that I’m falling apart and other people are reinforcing the idea.

Will I know in five sessions whether I like the therapist or is it a instant feeling? I have tried private therapy before and the therapist spoke for the whole hour during three sessions, I couldn’t get a word in so I never went back. When do you know you found the right one? Or is that how therapy is mean to be? I’m sorry if the question is silly I generally haven’t got a clue.
Whhaaat? I don't understand. They read you have bpd and depression as official diagnoses and didn't take that seriously. I really don't get that.

Hmm yes try to separate mental illness from ideas about strength and weakness. It's too tempting when people are told being emotional is a sign of weakness but it's not necessarily so. Honestly, a large part of bpd at its worse is extremely high intensity emotion, which is insufferable for anyone going through it: this is a known symptom of a mental disorder, it's not about weakness. Ideas of weakness and strength are all part of a damaging narrative that ultimately stigmatises mental health and prevents people from acknowledging their emotions and problems; and moving forward with recovery.

I don't know why I said five sessions, it was just an arbitrary number I picked - I just meant set yourself a bare minimum of sessions, as in give yourself a goal to stick to and then see if you wish to continue. But ultimately at some point you are going to have to stick to a therapist if you're serious about healing/recovering. Yeah, I also had the experience of having a therapist talk at me the whole session, I know how that is. I've learnt that it's a tall order to find the 'perfect' therapist, some claim to have found them and that is such an invaluable thing for those people.

However, I believe even a 'good', though not perfect, therapist is enough to help you in your healing process if you stick at it for the following reasons to name a few:
- allowing issues to surface rather than bottling them up
- the security and regularity of having someone there each week who doesn't go away, regardless of what you open up about
- taking control of your life enough to actually see the therapist every week
- confidence to face your issues
these are all pluses regardless of whether you adore your therapist and think they are your messiah or see them as just a regular person.

Also I think we have to bear in mind people with bpd will have usually had mental heath problems so long that anyone challenging their mentality when it feels so part of their identity isn't really going to be welcomed. Basically I mean, it would be normal to struggle with, dislike, or strongly blame your therapist. We're resistant to the unfamiliar, we're resistant to feeling better. This is who we are, or so we believe.

I think it's normal to struggle with therapy. I have actually struggled loads with therapy and have stuck at it, if you want to read this thread I made on the subject see below:
Therapy - does it actually help you

From personal experience feeling better long term is a tough road, especially when exposed to life triggers such as family etc. I do get the feeling that I regress or 'relapse' so to speak. I think part of what helps is some stoicism, to be more structured, not to take small things so serious and look at the bigger picture. In a way medication and the regularity of therapy will enable you not to get so sucked in by emotions. If you are female it's worth bearing in mind you are probably also affected by hormone cycles and how can you improve this e.g. talk to your doctor, anticipate your periods. Overall the major thing is to learn to manage your symptoms and behaviours so you spend more time in the good place than the bad place.
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#10
This is the first time I actually felt I can talk candidly, I’ve lived with this feeling of being judged for so long I forgotten how it felt to be honest with myself or others. Just talking here has given me some well of strength I thought I lost. I tidied my room today which isn’t a big thing but it felt like a small victory.
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#11
Girl interrupted- I’ve put myself on the waiting list for therapy and started looking for a private therapist. I need to help myself and i’ll try to be pushy, still a work in process at the moment. I didn’t really think by sitting the exams I was showing the university I was ok, i’ve Always smack on a smile and pretended i’m ok and been broken behind close doors where I could hide or not left the house in the first place. Usually staying at home seems the better option. You gave me some perspective. I’ve been saying i’m worth it to myself all day, I don’t know if its helping but I got out of bed so that’s something.
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#12
Dewey- my GP is a tough cookie so I wasn’t completely surprised by her reaction, she has brought me tears before because she was mean to my mother (I was already quite emotional at the time this happened). What surprised me was how helpful and understanding she was until she read the mental health notes. I brought up the topic as I wanted to go back on medication and the tone conversation went from ‘i’m going to write you a letter for university and it’s all going to be ok’ to her cutting the conversation short and hanging up. I don’t if its something other people have experienced, it was just strange.

Ok so going to therapy and dropping out it’s part of the process. Yeah I can relate to what you said the up and downs being a part of my identity, I don’t know how to be any other way and when I’m good mentally I convince myself I’m fine. I’ve been through two therapists now and kinda felt cured/better or that’s what I told myself... stupid thinking about it now. I don’t know where I’m going at this point but anywhere forward is better than here. Ok bigger picture.
 
D

dewey

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#14
Dewey- my GP is a tough cookie so I wasn’t completely surprised by her reaction, she has brought me tears before because she was mean to my mother (I was already quite emotional at the time this happened). What surprised me was how helpful and understanding she was until she read the mental health notes. I brought up the topic as I wanted to go back on medication and the tone conversation went from ‘i’m going to write you a letter for university and it’s all going to be ok’ to her cutting the conversation short and hanging up. I don’t if its something other people have experienced, it was just strange.

Ok so going to therapy and dropping out it’s part of the process. Yeah I can relate to what you said the up and downs being a part of my identity, I don’t know how to be any other way and when I’m good mentally I convince myself I’m fine. I’ve been through two therapists now and kinda felt cured/better or that’s what I told myself... stupid thinking about it now. I don’t know where I’m going at this point but anywhere forward is better than here. Ok bigger picture.
That's really bizarre... you should definitely see a different doctor and ask them to a)give you an appropriate anti depressant b)refer you for therapy, or you can self refer. Don't just accept this woman's answer. It's negligent.

Just realised I didn't mean to belittle anything of what you went through when I said "not to take small things so serious". I just meant about that habit of over thinking stuff and dramatising stuff that people diagnosed with BPD get into. Once again do not want to belittle any of what you been through.

Yeah, I also 'regress' or 'relapse' if triggered by stressful life events. Thinking that you're so on top of stuff but actually it can come back. I guess we're sensitive beings/ susceptible to mental health problems. Just got to find and build a support network, constantly have that therapist there, and not listen to your brain when it tells you bad things.
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#15
Dewey, you haven’t belittle anything i’m going through. I really appreciate the advice, when i get stuck in my negativity I lose myself and any light I have in me... the bigger picture is what I need. I have a lot more to come, my mother in law is terminally ill with cancer and i’m one of the main carers for her and my mother. If I can get through this last year of university I can start to deal with the other stuff and getting help, we’ll admitting I need help and letting my guard down will be hard but, what I was doing before wasn’t working.

Everyone one expects me to be ok and why shouldn’t they thatd what I portray.... life knock me down I disappear and get up again.

No one sees all the crying, dispair and laying in bed for days. I just don’t know how to build a network, I know it’s me I don’t trust people so how can they trust me. Plus I disappear when the world gets too much..... it’s hard for people to understand it’s not them you are avoiding but the world. Even when I try I just can’t manage to get it right, most people just don’t get it. Something has to change. Anyway thank you for listening.
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#16
Knowing there are people out there going through similar issues as me is really comforting. I don’t feel as alone.
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#17
Also I have filed a formal complaint about this GP but I think she is a lead consultant and nothing was done about it. She seems better than she used to be but a lot people still complain about her, I don’t know if they have filed complaints.
 
D

dewey

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#18
No one sees all the crying, dispair and laying in bed for days. I just don’t know how to build a network, I know it’s me I don’t trust people so how can they trust me. Plus I disappear when the world gets too much..... it’s hard for people to understand it’s not them you are avoiding but the world. Even when I try I just can’t manage to get it right, most people just don’t get it. Something has to change. Anyway thank you for listening.
Yes, you have been through a lot, in actual fact, and that's very challenging. No one can say otherwise. Even just reading your first post it is a lot to take in so I hope it was in some small way helpful or therapeutic even to write it all out.
Yes, I agree, knowing how to build successful and healthy relationships is difficult.
I'm glad you feel you wish to change something and that you have a place to share here
 
Chai_tea

Chai_tea

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#19
This whole thread has been me ranting and moaning... reading the post back was a reality check for me. Thanks for the support and advice, I’m sorry i’m currently a negative Nancy and hopefully my next post will be me in a much better place. Getting help is key, i’m not making excuses anymore.
 

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