New beginnings

Wow, it’s been a while since I last posted! Life has been an absolute whirlwind, and I’ve decided to take a step back and start writing again.

So much has changed in my life over the past year, I decided to dedicate a blog to the confused thoughts and experiences I’ve been having about life and everything in it. I’m sure it will be awkward as ever to read but I’m hoping it will help people in similar situations and let me get more involved with my readers.

The new page is “confusedyoungadultsite.wordpress.com” or you can click here.

 

Hope to see you all and that you enjoy hearing about my experiences.

 

Sophie x

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Present

Nows a pretty rough time for me. 

My exams officially start tomorrow, the deciders on whether or not I can attend the university I chose. A-Levels are so so so difficult, and my predicted grades are so high, I’m terrified I’ll not reach them.

All the studying is making my brain ache constantly, and work is so stressful I could cry every shift. I’m applying for other jobs at the moment, but finding the time with all my revision classes and tutoring is hard. 

I need my employer to treat me like a valued person, not just some Saturday girl they can order around a bar. I have 8 hour shifts on my feet with no break, but they still take a break out of my minimum wage pay! I’m trying to save money this summer so I can actually enjoy university and so the struggle to make ends meet doesn’t hold back my learning or enjoyment. 

Yesterday I also found out my one and only ex has starting dating a gorgeous blonde in London who studies Russian at a prestigious university. I don’t wish him on her, but I’m having conflicting feelings as it is bringing up memories of the heart break and pain I went through, which I really don’t need right now. 

To top it all off I’m really struggling to sleep properly. I can’t fall asleep for hours after I put my phone away, wake up in the night but then can’t leave my bed in the morning. It’s hurting my focus and academic ability which is the last thing I need right now. 

Therapy is still going on, and I do actually enjoy my sessions. Sometimes it’s tough, and I leave the office wanting to sob my heart out. Dredging up topics that I’ve buried for so many years is a long, slow process but I’m trying, and that’s what counts. 

My thoughts are with all of the people who’s blogs I read, I wish you all the best xoxo

Daily struggles

When did the simple things in life get so damn hard?

Getting up on time, eating 3 meals a day, showering; it’s been so difficult for as long as I can remember now. Self-care is so god damn important and I am the first to check everyone else is ok, but when was the last time I checked that I was ok? I need to be my own support person.

I’m not sure why simple things are so difficult. They shouldn’t be, but here I am. Things just seem so pointless, I feel so irrelevant and insignificant.

This weekend, I put myself out there and met with a friend who was home for the week. I had a great time, or at least I tried to be ‘smiley’ and what have you, but the second I got in my bedroom I felt so drained. It’s not my friend, she’s fantastic, it’s literally just too much to go out for a drink. So I will admit it, I did relapse for the first time since starting with my new therapist 5 weeks ago.

I’m not going to pretend like I’ve got my shit together, this is the one place I can talk freely about the mess that are my thoughts.

It felt so relieving to self harm, that instant physical gratification to an intangible emotion. Reminds me why we get addicted to it. The pain focuses me, the blood makes me feel real again. It’s so hard to put into words how much of a stress reliever it is. I tried my ‘healthy’ coping techniques but nothing worked and I just got overwhelmed with the emptiness.
On a different note, I’m struggling with friends lately. I feel like I’m constantly putting on a brave and happy face to be there for someone, but the second they’re not 100% they don’t have any time for me. I feel like maybe I’m prioritising someone else’s mental health, which I don’t know how to feel about. Does it make me a bad friend to want some reciprocal emotion? I’m just too weary to do all this.

‘Love yourself, happiness will follow’ -Unknown

Just some thoughts

Thank you all so much for your support on my last post. I hadn’t realised how much I blamed myself for that situation until I wrote it down. Things are pretty tough at the moment. I have big exams coming up, and I need spectacular results to be able to go to the university I’ve been accepted to, and to study my dream course, physics with astrophysics. The pressure I put myself under more than anything is suffocating.

I’m struggling to balance this with my part-time job as a bartender, which is a necessity for me to be able to afford university living costs. I’ve cut back my hours significantly, but a multitude of emotions are dragging me down, making things harder than they should be.

I’m feeling distant from my friends. A connection has seem to be lost and I’m so god damn lonely! The only meaningful interaction I have is with my cousin who writes the most heart-wrenching poems that touch my soul. Serious tattoo thoughts on her tattoos, if she’d let me!

Most upsettingly, I’m losing the connection with my best friend. As the way things go, I’m having a tough time with my depression lately and the urge to relapse is stronger than it has been in a while. It hurts to speak, pay attention or even joke around at school, so the relationship is suffering as a result.
I need the strength to be able to talk to Julie openly about this on Thursday. I think it’s going to be an emotional session, I can’t let myself close off and go into a shell, as I’m so prone to doing. (I’ll post about the session next week)
This next bit is going to be soppy and so typically teenage girl, feel free to stop reading now lol
As aforementioned, I’m lonely. When my ex and I broke up over a year ago I was heartbroken, as most people are with their first love. I’m over that completely; but I’ve not felt a connection like that with anyone and it’s really getting to me. All of my friends have partners and it is becoming a constant reminder that I don’t have anyone that way.

I miss the feeling of being loved and wanted, someone to talk to at any hour of the day. The companionship and yes, the sex. Stress relief 101!

I’m not the type of person that aimlessly dates; not the best for an 18 year old but what can you do? If I date you, I see the potential to have a future with you, and this is a bit of a flaw that is exacerbating my loneliness.

I’m not really sure how to overcome these problems, so I’m a bit stuck.

Thanks for reading,
Sophie

Worst day of my life

{Trigger warning for victims of sexual assault}
May 2013, I was 15 years old. It was a Friday evening so, as most youths in England do, my friends and I put on too much eyeliner and went to the local park to drink copious amounts of alcohol, pee in bushes and freeze our tits off.

This particular night is seared in my memory. I will never forget it. I need to get it out though, I’ve never really told the entire story and this is the place to do it so here we go.

There were more people at the park that night than usual, people that didn’t go to my school. My friend and I had a little bottle of vodka between us, so neither one of us would be getting absolutely hammered. One of the guys we’d just met offered us a plastic water bottle of liquid, and I stupidly accepted. My friend was feeling a bit poorly so she didn’t. This drink was must have been spiked, because I’ve never blacked out like it ever.

The next thing I remember, after having some of that drink, is waking up in my friend’s room in pain.

A boy I barely knew, unknowing that I had drank something drugged, had a bet with his friends that he could have sex with someone that night.

I happened to be the person he chose.

This boy took my virginity, for a bet, in a park, while I was in no control of my body.

In my state of mind after this, from what my friend told me as I have absolutely no recollection, I basically had a mental breakdown.

I started talking about wanting to kill myself, how my parents would be so ashamed of me. I proceeded to smash a bottle of beer and use the glass to cut a vein in my hand to try to kill myself.

I couldn’t even walk, I had to be carried back to my friend’s home, covering myself and her in blood, as well as the poor boy she enlisted to carry me. Her mum had to shower the blood and twigs off me, and bind my hand up.

I was crying this entire time, freezing cold. I distinctly remember thinking I’d never been so cold in my entire life.

The next morning, I remembered nothing. I woke up to be genuinely surprised that it had snowed while we were outside. I had no idea someone had taken my virginity, apart from some soreness that felt similar to cramps. My hand throbbed, with a nasty and deep cut still bleeding.

My friend had to tell me I had had sex in a park. That everyone knew. The next week at school was horrendous. Boys shouted at me, calling me a slut and a dirty whore. My ‘friend’ complained how I got blood on her clothes. Girls spread rumours, I got dirty looks and spent the rest of the year trying to be invisible.

It took me months to realise I’d been assaulted, and over a year to tell my parents.

A boy took advantage of me for a bet and it was my fault. I was tipsy, drugged and underage- and when I explained all this to this boy, he said ‘I don’t know what your damage is but claiming that I raped you? Fuck off’

Why feelings suck

I feel so much of everything but nothing at the same time. 

This thought came up in one of my sessions with my therapist, and it baffled the shit out of me to be blunt. I feel so much but so little, and that’s one of the most distressing things to try to explain to people that don’t suffer from depression or similar.

How can I simultaneously feel numb but feel so many emotions that I need an outlet or else I’ll explode? And how can I begin to get over this sensation when I don’t really understand how it’s possible in the first place?

It reminds me of Hermione’s snarky little comment about Ron’s emotional range of a teaspoon- I’m both a teaspoon and a fucking Olympic size swimming pool.

My therapist asked me to try and think of adjectives for the emotions I was dealing with simultaneously. Here are a few I came up with, maybe you guys can relate..

  • Numb
  • Sad
  • Angry
  • Empty
  • Guilty
  • Worthless
  • Selfish
  • Disgusting
  • Nothing at all

With all these shitty feelings floating around my head it gets overwhelming. I can spend time staring at nothing without realising. I find it hard to not have any distractions, like music or a book, because the silence of my senses causes the feelings to produce negative thoughts.

It’s hard, guys, I’m not going to beat around the bush here. It’s a struggle. Sisyphus ain’t got nothing on this.

If anyone wants to recommend distraction techniques that work for you, feel free to leave them in the comments.

Thanks for letting me (once again) spill my deepest darkest. Peace.

Let’s talk pills

I find that there is still a stigma around taking pills for mental health. When I was prescribed 50mg daily of sertraline (better known as Zoloft) my mom wasn’t very happy. I’m not sure why-and I don’t think she knew why either.

I’m currently on 150mg daily and each time I renew my prescription my mom asks me ‘you can’t take them forever, you know’ or ‘Is it really you or just the pills?’

I’ll say this bit loud for the people in the back:

MENTAL HEALTH IS JUST AS IMPORTANT AS PHYSICAL HEALTH. 

People taking medication for physical conditions aren’t told they have to be a temporary fix, so why should my situation be any different? The meds let me sleep better, help my concentration and most importantly, make me more positive. Furthermore, the medication clears a bit of a path for CBT.

In terms of side effects, I only get dry mouth. Although one thing I will say, if I go two or three days without them, for whatever reason, the withdrawal symptoms I get are constant dizziness, nausea and headaches.

Forgetfulness is shit basically.

Don’t allow someone else’s ignorant words affect how you view something that is helping you. You matter. Your mental health matters.

Anyone who disagrees with that can go fuck themselves.

My experience with therapy

I’ve had the joy of having two therapists with two different approaches to cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT).

My first therapist (let’s call her Jacqui) was an interesting character. She wore bright lipstick and brooches and was the classic ‘and how do you feel?’ I personally was of the opinion that she needed therapy herself! I sat there week after week not saying anything important, smiling lots and just trying to get the hour to go by quicker. My psychiatrist called bullshit on me, so I stopped seeing Jacqui and tried to just be for about a year.

Yeah, that wasn’t cool.

I actually scheduled an appointment with my psychiatrist (I suck at phone calls so this was a big deal for me) and asked to try a different therapist. She also upped my medication (Sertraline) to 150mg.

I’ve seen my new therapist Julie five times now, and she is miles better than I could have hoped. I’m not a talker, but she has this calming presence that makes you feel comfortable. She uses the mindfulness approach which is where you focus on thoughts, triggers and actions and develop healthy coping mechanisms.

I know it sounds cheesy, but I feel like Julie actually cares. She remembers the details, comes to sessions with written out plans and bits that I’ve said that have importance. She is helping me to see that it’s okay to have negative thoughts, but to just let them go and not dwell.

I can also proudly say I haven’t self harmed since I began seeing Julie. I’m not sure if this is a byproduct of seeing her or the medication increase, but either way somethings working!

I still feel urges, but it’s easier to ignore them or distract myself, thankfully.

Making the move to try CBT again was my last ditch attempt to try to gain some control over my mood.

Thank fuck I did.

xoxo

Shit psych doc part 2

Okay! The morbid tales continue, such fun.

This (as the title so aptly states) is more about the ineffective, pill pushing, pathetic excuse of a psychiatrist I saw for a psych evaluation.

So where I left off, was me in a less than ok state of mind. Little disclaimer here; this part involves underage drinking, cringe worthy convos with my mother and a new (lovely) psychiatrist. So if you’re not in a prepared state of mind, sorry. Good luck.

So as a deeply unhappy 14 year old, I did what the majority of underage drinkers of the U.K do- got blackout drunk in a local park. My parents thought I was at a sleepover; when in reality I was making poor life decision trying to convince dickheads that I, as the new girl, was fun and cool. Add this social pressure into a mix of suicidal thoughts and depression, you get me telling my deepest darkest to people who don’t give a shit, saying dark dark things like ‘Oh a tree, I wonder if I can hang myself from it’.

Anyhooo, in one particular scenario of binge drinking, I ended up back at home, much to my parents shock. In this drunken state, my mom says I spoke about the shit psych doctor and all the things the said that pushed me further into the deep end. And this is how my mother ended up taking me back to the GP a week later, and when meeting a proper psychiatrist, making a complaint about the previous cretin’s behaviour.

As it turns out, she had a whole host of complaints against her.

My new psychiatrist was a no-nonsense, bullshit defying woman who was terrifyingly perceptive and  very intelligent. Perfect for the wake up call I needed; I could not feasibly carry on like that. It would kill me; and deep in the dark recess of my fucked up mind, that’s exactly what I was hoping for

Moral of this escapade for me?

Don’t drink vodka and trust your mother.
Till next time..

xoxo

Shit psych doctor part 1

At some point, everyone has to see a doctor. You tell them what’s shit and they make you better, right?

Nope. As I found out, not all medical professionals deserve to be with vulnerable people.

My mom first made me see our GP to ask for help with my depression, as I was just a numb lump of shite. I couldn’t feel happiness, I didn’t want to leave my room, I struggled to shower and eat. I’m very good at pretending, so once out of my house my lovely mask of blonde, athletic and bubbly came on, and the snivelling wreck of a human being retreated inside. My poor family, however, did not get treated to the luxury of my full facade, only a slight one, and thus my trip to the local GP was arranged. I was given a referral to a psychiatric professional in Birmingham.

The entire drive to Birmingham I was a sweaty, anxious mess. Not the cute ‘haha I’m SO nervous *bites lip*’ type of thing, I’m talking full blown sweating hands, shakes, everything. I’m sat in the waiting room of a stately home with my mom, next to some brat of a teenage girl who is bitching at her poor mom, and who also instantly makes me feel more intimidated and anxious.

Finally, it’s time for me to go upstairs and have my appointment to see this specialist.

I sit down across from her and she’s got a clipboard, basically exactly what I predicted from those highly reliable Hollywood movies. What I didn’t expect, however, was for her to yawn the entire time, focus mainly on my Nana’s cancer and then hand me a poorly photocopied packet on self harm and a prescription.

The final straw for me, after talking about a particular situation for the first time ever, was ‘Are you sure you were sexually assaulted though? You said yourself you were drunk and had your drink spiked, so you could of gone along with it’.

(More on that particular story later)

I barely made it to the car before breaking down. The mere fact that this breakdown was in front of my mother told her how seriously upset I was, because I rarely reveal true emotion in front of others, and it took a while of her holding me for me to calm down.

I am uncomfortable with the idea of opening up, so to finally open up to this ‘professional’ after years of silence, and to be patted on the head, be yawned at repeatedly and handed some pills completely floored me. All I told my mom was that she yawned a lot, due to the sheer embarrassment and mortification I was feeling towards the encounter.

My mother was fuming at this woman for dismissively yawning whilst I finally opened up. The lack of respect shown to me in those small gestures was already enough to set her off, so I kept my silence about the other issues.

It took me a week to even talk about the ‘yawning scenario’ with my mum and dad again, weeks to feel less shattered and another 3 months to even go to the GP again.

(part 2 being written soon)