Blog Archives

Making friends living on an Acute psychiatric ward

I remember my first meeting with a mental health charity to collaborate and co-facilitate an anti- Stigma workshop/group that This is what I have been wanting to do for some time and here I am achieving my dreams. When I was back -institutionalized in an Acute ward with Anorexia and Bipolar in 2005. I think that personality trait to help others and organize groups has always been in me.

I was am a nightmare patient.

I always refused bed rest and focused my time on doing things like raffles to raise money for a charity shop connected to the Retreat,in York. I ended up raising over £100 in a matter of days with a BMI of 14.5. so about 41 kilograms. , 90 pounds – I’m nearly 5.8.

In other clinics- I was tube fed and restrained -often by up to four nurses.

That is a whole other story and debate.

I met another man who is/was a barrister and he had a complete breakdown. His wife had been cheating on him. I met an artist who expressed her unarticulated pain by painting. I met a woman who had been fighting Anorexia and OCD all her life and who taught me how to put a Christmas tree up.

I had forgotten.

I didn’t know what life was and what it meant to live.

I met a few ladies, not on my unit -The Acorn unit ( the name pun has not gone over my head). They expressed their pain through cutting and self-harm.

Nobody played games. Although some of us, from time to time would get hold of paracetamol and other shit and overdose to liven the humdrum mundaneness of life in an acute ward. I once got caught out on weigh day with fishing scales attached to my paper gown. The staff was quite taken aback with imaginative ways we would come up with to avoid putting on weight. These girls were hardcore. I met so many people.

I met a girl who terrified me. I could tell she had been in hospitals all her life. Her family could absolve themselves of whatever guilt they felt towards their daughter by puttting her in private clinics and the problem was dusted under the carpet.

I had started the process and recovery of eating again and putting on weight. I couldn’t cope. I developed another way to cope, for at least 4 months my day consisted of:

  • chewing gum

  • making a coffee

  • eating more chewing gum

  • make a cup herbal tea

  • smoke a cig .

I was on this loop for24 hours /7 days a week -for 4 months.

I was driving myself crazy in a way that was unfamiliar to me. The nurses tried to lock me out of the communal kitchens and one night I flipped out when they tried to grab me so I started throwing stuff around.

I wanted them to help me. The girl who initially terrified me came into the kitchen and sat down on the floor with me and held me for over an hour while, I shed tears for everything I can remember.

All the emotions attached to those memories I had pushed aside. None of these people was violent. We were trying to be understood and to understand ourselves.

I met a young girl with schizophrenia -she dressed like a Goth. Always had headphones in her ears. She was trying to silence the voices. She had been coping well up until her Mother passed away and like any normal person she was traumatized by it and her mental health went a bit off balance again. She was trying to make sense that her mother is dead. She was grieving.

One night a new guy arrived on the scene. I couldn’t take my eyes off him. He had that charisma of the kind of guy I always seemed to attract. His eyes were full of spark and mischief. A person you would want on your side. We became friends. We spoke a lot. He did a very Titanic thing and drew a picture of me. Fully clothed. I can’t find the picture to load up. He was still going through the DT’s. I will live with my memory of how the picture looked- possibly very trippy. Ha Ha.

Barry was only staying for 10 days before he went to ‘a dry out clinic further up the coast. I don’t know what happened inside me but I didn’t want him to go.

He was a lot older than me but we did everything together.I got him painting again. I know he had just got out of prison but he was so talented. I begged the nurses and psychiatrists to let him stay.

‘Look! Look! how talented he is! He needs help from you’.

Our last night before we parted ways. We sat in the smoking lounge and watched ‘Pulp fiction’. I know this may make some people reading this go .. erm………what?

I lay my head down in his lap and he played with my hair. For me, the act was more like a father gesture. I suspect for Barry it could have been different.

He wrote loads of letters and planned to come to visit me. The nurses censored my post and turned him away.

I often wonder what happened to him.

I get angry that just because he was an in and out of prison for many reasons- he was denied the rehabilitation that I received. He had issues. I am no innocent.

I feel he could not have benefited from a recovery type community setting rather than prison. It’s not my place to say what he did, I don’t want to remember.

It would have ruined the fact that I found feelings inside me. I could laugh again, I could cry. I was real. I felt like a human being and not some freak with Anorexia. Anorexia took second place and I wanted it to always take second place. I felt real.

So back to the Anti-stigma workshop, I am doing. I can’t wait. I have a passion. I have the drive. This is my new chapter. I did have a beautiful picture Barry drew of a dragonfly but I guess moving around a lot means that I have lost other precious memories. I am finally in a position to help other people. I’m not letting this opportunity getaway.

Neglect october domestic violence awareness month

 

There are many types of Child Abuse 

Emotional Abuse can be hard to spot and is easy to miss the signs. 

  • humiliating or constantly criticising a child-

 When my Mom was in a Domestic Violent Relationship with my ex step father he would constantly tell me I was chubby, too clingy.

  • threatening, shouting at a child or calling them names
  • making the child the subject of jokes, or using sarcasm to hurt a child
  • blaming and scapegoating

My ex -step father would shout at me for wanting to be close to my mom. He would drag me into my bedroom -my mom would stick up for me and she would get the brunt of my tantrums, clinginess, my eating issues.

  • making a child perform degrading acts
  • not recognising a child’s own individuality or trying to control their lives
  • pushing a child too hard or not recognising their limitations

My ex step father’s idea of teaching me how to swim was to grab hold go me, jump into the swimming pool and stay under the water until I thought I would pas out. He would do this as a joke in front of his friends and laugh at me for being so scared. I was 5 years old

  • exposing a child to upsetting events or situations, like domestic abuse or drug taking

My ex step father used to beat my mom up regularly because she dared to challenge him for cheating on her constantly ,for getting a 15 year old pregnant. He was always high and there were always parties going on with strange men and women around. I used to try and defend my mom until I became too afraid. I used to barricade myself in my bedroom. I would wait until he came home from work and hide under the bed. 

  • failing to promote a child’s social development
  • not allowing them to have friends
  • persistently ignoring them

I felt like my life was irrelevant. I wasn’t worth anything. I remember having an argument with my mom. She was struggling with her Mental health and the abuse. She came home from work when I was 5/6 years old. I was dressed up in her wedding dress and having fun. She screamed at me to get out her room .She was crying, I didn’t want to be away from her. She locked me out of the room because I started to have a tantrum. I went to the kitchen and got a knife out of the drawer and went to her bedroom door and yelled I was going to stab myself if she didn’t open the door. No reply. I heard her crying. I felt alone and that I couldn’t help her.

  • being absent

When I felt helpless and angry. I would act out. I would binge on food, wet the bed conrantly and go and sleep with the dogs in the kitchen. I recall one day feeling so worthless and useless that I couldn’t make my mom better or please my ex step father that I packed a suitcase falloff toys and clothes. I needed to get away. I walked down the driveway (to my child self -it looked like I was walking a long way from home),  When I reached the end of the driveway I looked left, right, I looked across the road and I thought to myself: What do I do now? I prayed that a car with two nice people would stop and pick me up and take me away from where I was. That didn’t happen. I had to accept my defeat and I walked back up the drive way angry. No body knew I had disappeared and I didn’t get the attention I wanted.

  • manipulating a child

Manipulation can be so subtle. I recall a time when my mom had found out about another affair that my ex stepfather had. He turned up from work with a puppy for me. I was over the moon. 

  • never saying anything kind, expressing positive feelings or congratulating a child on successes
  • never showing any emotions in interactions with a child, also known as emotional neglect.

SIGNS OF EMOTIONAL ABUSE IN OLDER CHILDREN

  • use language you wouldn’t expect them to know for their age
  • act in a way or know about things you wouldn’t expect them to know for their age
  • struggle to control their emotions
  • have extreme outbursts
  • seem isolated from their parents
  • lack social skills
  • have few or no friends.

EFFECTS OF EMOTIONAL ABUSE

BEHAVIOUR PROBLEMS

  • wanting attention or becoming clingy

I never wanted to leave my moms side. I refused to go to school. I would have tantrums and do anything to be heard.

  •    not caring how they act or what happens to them

I became a child who started walking home from school on my own from 5/6 years old. I remember a group of older boys pushing me about and touching my breasts and vagina. 

  • trying to make people dislike them

I didn’t feel very likeable or good about myself so I pushed people away from me. I didn’t feel Could trust people and even today I will show people the worst parts of me to protect myself.

  • developing risky behaviour, like stealing, bullying or running away.

The first time I stole anything was a 5 rand note from my mom so I could buy myself and people in my class sweets at the tuck shop. My ex step father refused to allow me to eat sweets because I was too ‘chubby’. I ran away from home many times as a teenager to get away from my mom when I was a teenager and my Nan and my Dad who refused to acknowledge me. I didn’t want my family to dictate to me. I didn’t want them to tell me they knew what was best for me. I wanted to escape and drugs and being around strange men seemed like the right answer.

EMOTIONAL DEVELOPMENT PROBLEMS

  • feeling, expressing and controlling emotions
  • lacking confidence or causing anger problems
  • finding it difficult to make and maintain healthy relationships later in life
  • higher levels of depression and health problems as adults compared to those who experienced other types of child abuse.

MENTAL HEALTH PROBLEMS

I went on to develop serious mental health issues. I developed social anxiety from a young age.  My first suicide attempt was at 12 years old

  • eating disorders

I became obsessed with my weight. I couldn’t deal with my weight issues and I started taking diet tablets at the age of 15 years old. I abused cocaine and mandrax and ecstasy -any drug to stop me from thinking about food. I used to demand my mother take me to doctors to prescribe diet pills for me even though I was thin. I had huge problems and I eventually developed Chromic anorexia. I was sectioned twice in the U.K.   In 2007 I develop Bradycardia. My BMI was 14. My weight was 39 kilograms. I wanted to die. 

I don’t know why I felt the need to cut my legs in my Nan’s kitchen when I was 12/13. I didn’t know how else to express myself. When I lost my virginity to a guy who had left his ex and promised to date me and be with me. The next night his ex, myself and him herein his car and he chose his ex over me. I flipped. I couldn’t deal with the pain, the headache and I cut myself with a bottle neck and became uncontrollable. 

  • language development
  • problems forming healthy relationships.

If you want to help some one who is being abused in all its forms or to help some one who is self harming. 

SELF HARM RESOURCES

The one I wrote in 2017

LIFE UPDATE:

Yeah, I’ve been putting off this post. Why?

I happen to live in a teeny tiny cartoon town where some people know about my blog and read it. That don’t like my posts but when I meet up with them it comes up in conversation sometimes.

I don’t feel I should be blogging if I can’t speak my mind – so to all the judgemental people out there

.I know a lot of other peoples secrets and battles and for the record, if you don’t get me – well, one less person to worry about.

GOOD NEWS -first. I have finished year one of my MA  In Creative writing. Pat my back.I’m waiting for my results for my final piece -the second act to the homeless couple piece and I’m registered to start the final 120 credits in October…

My head and emotions have been all over the place. I know I shouldn’t feel ashamed but because I’ve done a lot of volunteering and work with mental health charities I’ve been scared to put this on here.

Here is my conclusion to not being honest and writing for me.

If  future potential opportunities and (other peoples judgements) on my ability to do them effectively is in doubt

Well, I say people can be hypocrites. Just because you work in a mental health sector doesn’t mean you have your shit together all the time.

rant over

In the last 13 days, I’ve probably had about 23 hours of sleep

I decided it would be a great idea not to drink and indulge in another recreational drug

Monster alert

I don’t know when to stop.

My  heart can be seizing up –

,I can’t. breathe,

I meet up with dodgy folk and willingly hand over money to chase a sense of self.

Here is the truth. I hate alcohol, I hate all drugs to be honest. The only drug I ever fell in love with was an ecstasy-rave bunny.

That is not to say I didn’t get addicted to some heavy drugs but I worked through it.

These past days have been delirious.

Who in their right mind will continue buying a drug where the quality varies from alright to fuck I need to go to A&E

 

I think the females in my family are tough. We are born survivors and fighters and we do screw up. Oh hell, yes.

I don’t know why it’s taking me so long to get my self together.

12 days of pure craziness

Sleazy people. I  have valid reasons for saying this

Things get serious when I’ put in as room with people with no morals and  my attitude and big mouth 

It’s hard to be 100 % honest on here these days. I don’t drink a lot but when I do I binge drink

I gave up drinking for a while and thought I would try another drug. 

Because that is so logical and rational! ewer.. no!

I got skanked by a guy I’ve helped and known for Years.

I hadn’t seen him since 2013. I always went that bit further to help him out when he was having issues.

I’d buy him food, sit with him when nobody else would give him the time of day..

I got in touch with him.

I nearly did a 180 degree turn when I saw him.

He is a shell of the man he used to be.. the drugs do not work.

He managed to score something.It made me buzz for a bit but I know it wasn’t quality shit.

His contact was some foreign sexist drug dealer who spoke  to me like I was a piece of shit.

I told him straight- who is handing over the money and I want to see what I am buying.

My so-called mate took this as an opportunity to ask for a bit and I love to share but I have a life and responsibilities. I helped him out as much as I could.

He is past saving.

I went on a bender thinking I’m invincible. Day turned to night and then day again.

I decided that was it- No more dealing with that person and his lot.

A few numbers were sent to my inbox and I thought – yeah… let’s try again.

Stupid girl indeed.

I was obsessed with running out. So, I made a few phone calls and got in touch with a new drug dealer.

This guy was one of the paranoid drug dealer types

It was all are you a cop etc etc?

The stuff was not brilliant but the compulsion to have and not be without made me seek out more.

I went back to ex-friend. This time I spent money and got screwed. I actually threw half the contents down the toilet.

I got in touch with this new guy again and he’s one of them (not being racist)Asian lads who don’t like being questioned

Meet me!

He gave me all this bullshit about coming to meet me then plans changed and I had to meet some strange cousin runner of his who skanked me  with god knows what

I got on the phone straight away to the supplier and I gave him hell.

Finally convinced him that his little runner was the one who pulled a fast one. not me.

This cockroach- gave the whole spiel of I will sort you out -apologies, I’ll be there in 10 min , one hour turned to 8 hours

I was fuming. I sent him a text along the lines of its not about the money it’s the principleYour business ethic is amateurish. You are a wannabe. come collect your shit- You say you keep your word well… etc. etc..

I basically told him he wasn’t as clever as he thought he was and I didn’t think he would last as a business whatever. WHAT GOES AROUND COMES AROUND

Cut my losses and went back to bed. 8 am I get a phone call from this guy

Early morning o received a phone call from him -I was surprised.

He started giving me that whole Fuck you mother fucking bitch

He easy giving it the big I am a somebody

Mother fucking bitch

I’m gonna put 6000 pounds on your head

I’m coming round your house and I’m gonna break your jaw

I thought fuck this bullshit I can also scream and shout

So-called his bluff (Iprayed it was a bluff) but I was ready to defend myself, my family and go out there and show him I won’t be intimidated

 

 I was terrified. I didn’t know what this guy had planned  I waited outside. He rang and said he’s out side. I went outside and I’m like where the fuck are you take your shit shove it up your arse etc..

Then he’s like can you let me speak…

Okay .. calmed down let him speak..

He’s having a hard time with his car, and life and did I really think he was going to come to my home and do what he said he was going to do?

YES.

We had a conversation -civil and then he said yeah I will sort you out…

These are not games I play.. the waiting game

I got in touch with someone else and thought right time to play you mofo.

Said I had xx amount of money I’m torn between being”loyal” to cockroach and scoring off someone else

This tune changed in a nano scene. Right I’ll get a taxi. and give you amount that I owe you because of the shit his runner sold me

I was like you have half an hour.

I was being truthful

He then rings up with another campfire story – oh no -he can get me to amount I Sid I would pay for but only give me the IOU/decent thing to do if all drugs were legal another time.

That was it for me.

I went with the other people- expensive but better and I’ve put not only myself through hell but my family.

My child is not around when I do it but I and my better half were on the verge of having a massive arena battle

It got the point on Saturday night when I decided it would be a good idea to get more so as not to run out…

I only told my husband when I got a text to say meet me outside

My husband did something I’ve never seen him do- he had these nan chunks and he went for this other dude. I stopped him.

It was intense- to hear my husband say he wanted to hurt me scared me handmade me feel ashamed.

WTF ?  he doesn’t deserve this shit. I’m killing myself and so it’s got to the point where I have to say adios

My health is suffering, my relationships and I don’t like being controlled by people, drugs or anything.

Know how to stop and can do it and have done it many times

I am not going to hide that I will always have an addictive nature.

It takes everything from me My awesome personality, my creativity, my empathy and it takes up my moments and my days.

So here I am. Doing what I need to do.

Maybe I shouldn’t be so in yer face with drug dealers but I have no respect for them when I am getting poor customer service, value and a shitty attitude like I’m doing them a favour.

Without our money, they wouldn’t have a demand to supply.

I am a stickler for justice, integrity and keeping a person to their word – does ‘t matter who you are.

One thing I have realised is do not let other people intimidate you – if they give you bullshit give back to them – bullies back down soon enough.

It could have got to the point where I am so far down the line like ex-friend

I don’t want to e that person.

It shocked me to see this person the way he is now and how all he is bothered about is his next hit

I’m not saying I’m better than him but I had time to get out before it took away everyting that made me who I am

Yes, people, even rug dealers are human and I am willing to empathise but do not try and fuck me over because I will stand my ground and I will fight.

Looking forward to sleep, getting my personality back, life on the go

 

and well…. I will always be an addict.I am addicted to my eating disorder. I will always need or find something to fill that void.

The times I thrive and people reciprocate are when I am me – in all my weirdness- not out of my head

So there are the cold hard facts.

I hope I will never let this demon back I Ama fighter and have fought many battles and won a few.

these are my words

Daisy life update.