Angels lie to keep control

Hopefully this is the darkest I’ll ever get on here, folks. 

Hopefully this is the darkest corner in which you’ll have found me and the deepest within the forest of depression I’ll ever hide. 

Before I finished my last post was the first time in a very long time I had come to suicide.  The sheer amount of stress and depression was all consuming and swallowed me whole. 

I’m still fighting my way out, but at least I’m able to function right now. Over the weekend I wasn’t taking care of my hygiene, wouldn’t get out of bed, ate my husband’s entire birthday cake, 2.5 pints of ice cream, and wouldn’t engage in day to day human activities like talking. I blew up on my mother for asking me to pick up something off the floor. 

My husband says I don’t treat him like he matters when I’m this depressed. He says I don’t treat him like a husband but like a buddy or a friend. It comes from years of pushing people away. Every time someone gets close to me, I step back. It’s so strange to never live in the same household as my father and pick up his traits.  

I have 2 friends – Alissa and Elizabeth – who are both very close to me. I’ve known Elizabeth for over 20 years. We reconnected a few years back and have grown closer since. She’s truly a good friend. She tries to psychoanalyze me at times which I’m not the biggest fan of (not qualified to do!), but I know she means well.  Here’s the deal: for every inch she scooches closer, I pull back six. It’s not something I do consciously, it’s just done. Moving closer would make me too vulnerable and I’m in no position for that.  

My other friend, Alissa is also a counselor. She suffers with depression (I personally think she’s got more than depression, but I’m not in the business of diagnosing my friends) like I do so we commiserate together. We both work in the same area with the same population so, again, we commiserate about work stress and drama. She and I have grown very close. As she grows closer or needs more support, I fucking run – I don’t understand why.  When I need support, I hide from her until I feel well enough to express my feelings without being under suspicion of being suicidal. I’m always afraid she’ll petition me or send the police to my house to check on me because she’s a counselor. I refuse to go into a hospital involuntarily – I know what they’re like and I’m not ruining my career by sitting next to a patient in a group session. Fuck that shit. I’ve always gone voluntarily. 

Back to the husband thing, I always back away. I told him I distance myself from everyone because it’s habit at this point and – as much sense as this doesn’t make – if I did commit suicide, I will have put so much distance between me and everyone else, it’s like it wouldn’t have mattered much if I was gone. Just a buddy, not a wife. 

H: “That doesn’t make any sense.”
Me: “Depression doesn’t make any sense. What kind of disease has you thinking that in order to survive you have to die?  Our purpose as humans is to propagate the species. We can’t do that if we’re dead.  Depression isn’t based in any reality; my thinking isn’t real.  It makes you focus on what it wants you to focus on – which is mainly your depression, nothing else.  But you always matter; you’ve always mattered.”

I explained that it’s difficult talking to him about my deepest and darkest thoughts and feelings because he’s never been there. While I’m delighted he hasn’t, explaining what Hell looks like and how it felt versus describing how it feels to someone who’s already been there are 2 separate things. (I can’t go to support groups – I may run into patients there.). So I keep to myself. I understand my Hell and I know my pain. I’ll get through this if it kills me – whether by my hand or G-d’s. 

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message from a.c. lerock

They fucked up and let me see some of my  chart. Lordy lord… this is what I bug the husband with in the middle of the day. 

And he stays. 

And I misspoke. There’s a space under the diagnosis that allows for clarification, as being depressed all the time negates a bipolar diagnosis but what people fail to realize is depression is my baseline.  

Sorry. My lack of chemicals, since a very young age, is all I’ve come to know. I’ve started back in therapy and I went back to the source: my childhood therapist. I worked with her from age 5 until my sophomore year in college, when I was raped. She said that I disappeared too soon – I had only scratched the surface in dealing with the rape and given my presentation, it seems that my mind hasn’t recovered. 

My body is now paying the price. 

So I spent a week between that session and the next thinking about everything: the rape, the aftermath, my life since then – my progress, my failures, my detours – everything – and it all made sense. My therapist was right: I stopped taking care of myself long ago.  I can’t do that anymore. I have a family, I have a husband. I have a life. I have a life I don’t want to lose. 

I told her that I have frequent suicidal thoughts with plans and access and means. But I have a huge protective factor: my husband. I told her that my husband lost his mother when he was 22 and he crawled inside a bottle to numb the pain. A year later, we started dating – he had one foot out of said bottle. I told him he’d have to stop drinking for us to date (at the time, I was a tee-totaler) and he quit. I will never send him back to that life. I will never leave him destroyed like that. He told me once that the only reason he attempts to get better paying employment is because of me, otherwise he would just live at home working a dead end job with no purpose. That leaves me to believe that I give him purpose. He gives me purpose and hope. 

I was hospitalized so many times during the first 2 years of our relationship that my own family stopped visiting. My (now) husband visited everyday, without fail. He never missed a day. Even when I didn’t want him there, he came. He’d sit through my nasty attitude and come the next day.  I finally thought to myself: Stop. Just fucking stop. This guy sees something in you. Something that’s good; something worth saving. Isn’t it worth it, perhaps, to stick around and find out what it is?  Otherwise you may never know. 

I still want to know. But if I keep hiding behind this trauma, I’ll never know. So it’s time to process it and move from victim to survivor. 

The only way around in this life is through. 

Never pay the Reaper with love only

 

Two weeks ago, I was very depressed suicidal.  I had the means, plan, opportunity.  I told him and my mother.  Now, I’m fully aware that my mother has washed her hands of me; there is only one star to the show here and if it’s not her, it’s not a show she’s going to watch.  But I live in her house.  You’d think finding your daughter’s bloated and clammy body would inadvertently make you the star of the show…  Oh no, that role would be played by the grieving 35-year-old widower.  Damn, she misses out again.  Rats.

I don’t think my husband gets it yet.  By “it,” I’m referring to my illness.  We had a long conversation after I was coming out of my suicidal state and I was able to distance myself from the severe depression that was tying me to those thoughts.  He didn’t seem – and still doesn’t – to understand how the mind, how biology, can fight so hard to keep us alive as a species yet the mind can turn on itself.  One thought becomes a fixation that can lead to total destruction of oneself.  Here was this woman he’s known for 25 years – since childhood – and he never saw her pain then (I studied to be an actress – I was good at hiding most things), just a normal kid like him.  Fast forward two decades and all that’s written on my face when the curtains are closed and the doors are locked is pain and fear.

I told him I know where his guns are and despite being a pacifist, I know how to load and fire them.  I just didn’t want to leave a mess for him and my mother – it’s a new carpet.  I didn’t want to get found by the dog and have her eating me – she’d need to be put down.

I know the nearest access to the local river – our property is 1 mile away from a cliff that plunges straight down to it.  I was warned about it as a child and I found the passage there a month ago.

I have access to my roof.  I can tie a noose.  Cut “down the road, not across the street.”  These are the pathetic and desperate methods you teach yourself and you learn along the way when the pain seems too much to handle.  And some days it is; I’m not going to sit here and say “hold on, it’ll get better!” because some days are worse than others.  But guess what?

I’m still here.  Clearly.

Why?  I honestly don’t have a great answer.  I’d love to say it’s 100% because of my husband, but it’s not.  That’s a shitty way of staying motivated – to have my entire life swing in the balance of someone else’s.  How much pressure does that put on him, do you think?  Every drive to work would be a nightmare for him: “Stay away from me – if I get a scratch on me, my wife will kill herself!  She has nothing else to life for!

Fuck no.  I’d say 45% is him.  The rest has to be something else…

A-Ha!  I got it!  I’m a movie buff!  I love comedies, rom-coms, cartoons, psychological thrillers, docu-dramas… anyway – I love a good ending.  I usually Wikipedia that shit because I can’t wait 2 hours to find out what happens; I am not a patient person (I am diagnosed with ADHD as well).  If I die, that’s it.  No Wikipedia.  No Reader’s Digest.  No Cliff’s Notes.  No nothing.  I’ll never know if Mom gets remarried.  If my sister ever finds happiness.  If I ever have kids.  If Savage Garden will ever get back together.  How does this story end?

these final hours. 

Last night I was scared. I had the lights off; the halls were dark and I couldn’t see. Usually my husband is there, but he was working.  I just kept thinking about how much I wanted to curl into his arms and sleep – it’s where I feel the most safe. 

When I woke up, he was there next to me, asleep. I just rubbed his shoulder for a few minutes before I decided it was time to get up and start getting my day going. When the bed shifted, he woke up, asked me the standard “how are you,” “how was work” questions. He could see I was still depressed and detached from our conversation the other day, which spiraled into yet another conversation about my inability to be intimate with him and my shutting down. This spawned a whole other line of conversation about how he’s spent 10 years waiting for things to get better and nothing’s changed; now we’re older and he physically feels himself changing which has him upset because his youth was wasted waiting for me to screw my head on straight. 

I admit: I shut down. I get depressed. I withdraw into myself and attempt to “fix” the problem alone. I see now how well that’s been working. But my question is to myself is “now what?” 

Now what do you do?  Withdrawing doesn’t work but it’s automatic.  Being  depressed doesn’t help but it’s automatic.  Being angry doesn’t help but it’s automatic. What else do I have?  Be open, honest, and vulnerable?  

I am terrified.  After 10 years, you’d think I’d have let my own spouse in. I thought I had. It was a smoke screen I put up to fool everyone – including myself.  

I don’t want to lose my husband. But I don’t know how to let anyone in.  It used to be safer with everyone out there, but now it’s becoming just as dangerous. 

the contents of my head. 

This is how I feel.  

My husband and I got into an argument the other day.  I know, by the looks of this page, that’s all we do, but that’s not the case.  We’ve been doing really well, but I’m not always sure if that’s because we work such odd hours or we’re just too tired to start a conversation that most likely will end in an argument.

Anyway, the argument.  It was about petty shit, really – the dog threw up on the carpet.  I saw something in the (by this time) dried bile that was alarming – several little plastic tubes that looked like the refills for a Bic pen.  I flipped.  I was not happy that – one – I’d started eating my breakfast and didn’t notice the dog had thrown up until I smelled something foul, then saw a pile of yarn trimmings, plastic tubes things (still unidentified), and dog hair next to the table.  And two, became more pissed that when I woke him up to talk about the spew, he looked at me as though this was a non-issue, would not speak to me at all, and wasn’t going to do shit about it.  In hindsight, I overreacted.  I shouldn’t have woken him up.  I should have picked up the bulk and gone to sleep, cleaned the rest when I woke up.

It was 9am.  I’d just worked a 12 hour shift in the emergency room.  I was tired.  I was hungry.  I had received a shitty email from my supervisor at the beginning of my shift.  I had embarrassed myself in front of the Chief of Medicine at 3am.  The EMR went down for 4 hours and we were forced to paperchart everything – my full assessments included; then transcribe them onto the EMR when the system went back up.  I was not in the mood for a fucking thing except to eat my french toast and crawl into bed.  Instead, I carefully set the stage for an argument that has forced me on a long, emotional existential journey that I wish was over.

After storming around the house looking for some vinegar and baking soda – and finding neither, he says to me “hey, quit yelling – I already cleaned it up, stop freaking out.”

Really?  After staring at me like an indignant 16-year-old with his arms folded for 5 minutes as if to say, “I’m not doing shit,” while I attempt to choke down my breakfast with the scent of vomit in the air, it took him less than 10 minutes to clean up.  I was livid.

That’s when the fun started.  That’s when he unleashed.  Overall, he was quite calm, but his words were more honest and lacked any inhibition.   He told me that my anger is out of control for a person my age, insinuating that despite my membership in the 30 and over club, my behavior, when angry, resembles that of a person who isn’t old enough to vote. 

Next, I was told that my anger is not healthy for the children we plan to have. My husband, having had similar experiences with his father, said he did not want our children growing up in the same type of environment. 

Yet all I heard was him comparing me to his father and almost repeating the same thing my mother has said about my anger over and over again after I blow up on her – “you’d better control that before you have kids.”  

Ugh.  The conversation takes another turn. Instead of blowing up more, I decide I’m too bloody tired and I start talking. 

My anger is my shield. It’s the only thing that’s worked for me.  I don’t know how to function without it.  I’ve been angry at so much for so long, I don’t know what it’s like to not be angry.  

I’m not sad, I’m irritated.
I’m not depressed, I’m agitated.
I’m not hurt, I’m pissed.

I purposely push everyone away. I get unnecessarily angry, I cuss – anything to drive people away. Why?  

Less Christmas presents. 

No, really – it’s easier than letting people in, letting them leave their mark, and them leaving anyway. This is not just men – this is everyone. My best friend sent me the sweetest email earlier this week telling me how much she appreciates my friendship and how much I mean to her. I have been praying that she and I would become close again after so much time apart (which was my fault).  

Guess what Alice did?  Guess. Haven’t checked my email in a week to confirm plans for us to hang out. Why? Because now she’s too close and I’m terrified. This is where I screw everything up.  This is it. Right here. I asked for it and now I’m going to screw it all up – again.  And I have no idea why and don’t know how to fix it. 

Same with the husband. How do I salvage 10 years of lost youth? How? And how does Linus give up his blanket? Can he? Can I? How do I lay down my sword during peacetime when I’ve got shell shock? 

Men were deceivers ever

I went to my doctor the other day, mentioned the whole thing with my mom and my FIL. He, like so many before him, told me not to “be so vocal about it,” and it’s none of my business.  Gee, thanks doc.  Now I’m definitely questioning if I’m right or wrong here.  I’m not telling my mother who she can and can’t be with – she went on a date earlier this week; I told her to have fun and don’t come home and spoil the new Star Wars flick for me.  I honestly just think it’s disgusting to date a family member!  I think it’s disgusting to sleep with a family member!  I don’t give a shit if they’re related by blood or marriage; in my case, once children happen – they would be related by blood which makes it worse.  

It doesn’t help that I generally don’t like the doddering old bastard and never really have.  He makes my inner anger look like chewed gum on a sidewalk.  He goes on rants – over and over again – about the state of the world; he would have made a great op-Ed columnist for The Saturday Evening Post.  These tirades continue for tens of minutes at loud and unnecessary decibels spanning important topics such as the obstructed views of Muslim women who wear hijabs and how this affects their driving, women and their cellphone usage and why they should be raped because of it, and how anyone who can turn on a television has the capability to work and should not be allowed to file for government benefits.  …You know, re-reading that, I don’t know how I sat there and listened to all that repugnant shit all these years and didn’t walk away earlier; I could have saved a lot of brain cells.  

I don’t know why I’m reacting to my doctor’s comments the  way I did.  I just sank into this depression.  I feel like I’m the one who should have stayed quiet and let my mother speak for herself for once.  

I’m always doing all the fucking talking; this is why we have the relationship we do and I have the trust issues I do.  I’m always the heavy, I’m the mom until someone is able to take the reins every once in a while.  That’s how I was trained as a young child; that’s my resentment.

Why am I paying for a crime I didn’t commit?  I didn’t cuss anyone out or get touchy-feely at dinner after I hoisted back a bottle of Maker’s Mark. Where are his consequences for his fucky behavior (aside from losing my Netflix)?  My husband is still talking to him. He hasn’t stopped going to the house and spending time with him. So much for solidarity. 

I’m not saying he should choose, but I specifically remember a time when I felt I had to make the choice. My mother objected to our marriage; she didn’t want me marrying him and didn’t want me getting married without a fancy wedding that she planned. She threatened to object if I went against her wishes. 

I told her she was not welcome at our tiny, tiny wedding. To this day, I have to hold back the tears because a bride should always have her mother if she can. But I made the choice to stick by my convictions and stand with my future husband. 

I feel cast aside. Betrayed. Less than. Because I remember taking vows that bound us as one, and we’re split in two. I stood, yet again, by my convictions – but I stand alone. That is not what family is. That is not what marriage is. And this time of year is about family and togetherness and I’m not feeling it in the slightest.  

    Call me when you’re sober.

    OK, I’ve been dodging questions for days now. I’ll try to make this short, but I’m not sure how.

    This past Thanksgiving was a nightmare. My FIL, an alcoholic, was drunk upon arrival and proceeded to get more hammered. During dinner, my mother screams in pain due to her sciatica.  

    (Now, she mentioned to me that he’d made a pass at her before – while inebriated. I told her to check him if she was uncomfortable. She told me she didn’t want to hurt his feelings as he is mentally unstable and extremely bad at handling rejection. I said to find a way to check it if she doesn’t want it to happen again.)

    Back to Thanksgiving. My FIL hears her cries of pain, gets up from his seat, goes to her, and begins massaging her thigh under the table. All while my husband, brother-in-law, and I are watching.  He proceeds to look down her shirt and make a comment about her breasts. 

    I am staring him down. …You ever watch one of those Nat Geo shows about the snakes? I’m terrified of the fuckers myself, but I imagine my look was one similar to that of a rattler in a coil; my eyes were following his every move, waiting for him to make one more step in the wrong direction before I bit his fat ass.  

    I wanted nothing more than to lay his ass out onto the floor, but then I realized that is my husband’s father. As much as I cannot tolerate that man, I have to respect the relationship he and my husband share. So as I sat in my chair, wringing my hands together with my knuckles turning almost white, I just kept repeating ”I am married to your son,” which I’ve come to find out makes no fucking difference to him.  

    Anyway, my BIL and husband attempt to get him to sit down, when he yells out, “I don’t give a fuck what Alice thinks!” That’s when I get up from the table, go to my bedroom, take a Seroquel and 2 Xanaxes, and try to go to sleep. Hubs attempted to calm me down but I screamed at the top of my lungs for at least an hour (so much for chemical intervention, eh?).  

    Now the incident has taken on a life of its own since then. FIL has since banned me from his property, is refusing to participate in any family functions, will not apologize, and despite all of that still has designs on my mother.  

    To be honest, I’m kinda delighted I won’t have to have anymore heated exchanges with him; his 50s morals and beliefs, inability to see past the end of his nose and refusal to accept reality is fucking draining. I deal with people who are medication non-compliant and self-medicate with booze for 12 hours a day; why the FUCK would I want to spend the holidays doing the same thing and NOT get paid double time? Are you shitting me? This is a man who stops his vehicle in traffic to look for dead bodies underneath, won’t “allow” his 25-year-old son to have a smartphone because he likes controlling him (his words, not mine), owns 9 guns and can’t shoot a one because he gets too nervous and loses his focus, has cirrhosis yet drinks 1/4 – 1/2 gallon of vodka a day, yet has no problem calling other people with mental illness “crazy, unpredictable, and dangerous…” Yeah. OK.  You first, pal.

    I tried calling him to settle this bullshit; he basically told me there’s no problem and banning me from his life because my mother won’t fuck him is easiest for him (mind you, not easy for his son) so he’s gonna keep doing it.  

    You know one of the biggest slaps in the face? It’s actually my friends. I’ve heard these lines from several different people and I’ve had enough:

    “If being with him makes your mom happy, wouldn’t you want her to be happy?”

    “How does this define your marriage? Why are you letting it? You’re not related by blood.”

    “It’s none of your business.”

    OK, let’s answer these, shall we?
    1. First, I would find it completely ironic that out of the millions of people walking around on this twisted blue ball, she would find happiness with the one person I would consider off-limits. Why ironic? Because I’m finally happy. I’m overjoyed. My marriage, even the ups and downs like any marriage, is amazing and I couldn’t have found a more amazing man. Wouldn’t it be just swell that she would find “that special someone” in MY family tree?! I would love for my mother to find happiness, but why does her happiness have to ride sidecar to mine? Why can’t we be individually happy? If she were to pursue a relationship with him and it failed, family gatherings would be forever affected. At that point, her attempt at happiness directly affects not just my life, but my husband’s and my future children.  

    2. It doesn’t define my marriage, but think long term. If they were to get married, I’d be married to my stepbrother, my children would be cousins. How fucked up is that?! It doesn’t define my marriage more than it identifies my FIL and mother’s lack of respect for my marriage. Relation by marriage, to me, is sacred just as relation to blood (sometimes even more so). I forget that I’m talking about 2 people that don’t respect me or my husband; I don’t know why I bother.

    3. I never said it was my business. But to tell me it’s not my business than proceed to gossip about me, my husband, or anything pertaining to things unrelated to your functioning lets me know that this is a one-sided deal. Don’t you have other shit to do? Like darn socks or count carpet fibers or something?  

    Dear Buddha, when I retire… Don’t let be become useless and an overall pain in the ass to my kids, flirting with the idea of getting involved with their lives instead of finding part time employment. Or just gluing my head to my kitchen floor. Amen.