Bitch, I Don’t Ask for Help & Other Charming Lashings

It’s raining. This is not unusual for Melbourne. I’m crying. This is not unusual for me. I don’t know when it happened, when I stopped being someone who had pain and when I started believing I was pain personified, but I am a person that is harnessed by heartbreak. I used to own my cracks; I used to be one of those Japanese vases. Now my cracks own me and I don’t know how to break the habit.

A few months ago, I started some new anti-depressants. They made me happy! Then they made me happyhappyhappy. Then they made me oh look shoes, drink party drink drink drink, god we connect so deeply, I adore my new family, oh look clothes sunglasses drink drink drink, hey cute boy hey, happy happy drink shop drink happy drink drink.

But I wasn’t ridiculous. So I didn’t worry. My thoughts were a bit too fast, I spoke a bit too much, but that’s me, so I didn’t worry. I emptied my bank account, but it’s so good to finally have money! so I didn’t worry. I was late for work, and dishevelled too, but I’m not anxious! so I didn’t worry. My shrink did worry. But I convinced him I was fine. Because, well, aren’t I fine? I am not ridiculous so I am fine.

My moods had been pinballing especially hard the past few weeks: I’msohyperIcan’tsitstill, I mope for daaaaays, I snapsnapSNAP, I cry and fill bathtubs. Pills + alcohol = stability. So I eased up on the drinking. Slowly, the calm returned. Then the intense drive followed. And this time, it had found a new target.

Recently, I have been pummelling my boyfriend with every emotional fist in me. After years of being a lighthouse, my relief exploded. I pisa-ed the shit out of myself. I pushed too hard. I became one of those needy people. When I had the realisation earlier today, I was so disgusted with myself that I threw up. In the same way that trees petrify, any emotional pain I have these days manifests physically.

It started yesterday when I couldn’t get off my bedroom floor; I had that voice in my mind telling me that I was unloveable and ugly and pathetic. I spent all day pushing back. By the evening I was exhausted. I left home and went into the city. The voice was telling me how worthless I was for lying on my bedroom floor instead of writing my essay. My boyfriend was on his way to celebrate the end of term. I was happy for him.

At the cafe, I sat down and hated myself some more. I gave monosyllabic responses to anyone that messaged me because help me! but bitch, I don’t ask for help. I felt guilty for wanting my boyfriend. The voice told me that I was stupid and clingy and spare him one night of your bullshit? I ordered wine. Then more. Then I went to another bar and drank whiskey.

I was drunk. I was angry. I hated myself for being so fucking fragile. When I saw the bartender, I wondered if I could ever be as self-destructive as to be a cheater. No. I wrote it into a story anyway. A story about a woman who hurts all the time and needs too much. The woman considers cheating on her boyfriend. The woman rejects the idea because she needs her boyfriend like she needs whiskey. The woman is a needy fuck. I sent this to my boyfriend.

At home he called me and we had an okay conversation.

Today I felt raw and disassociated. He tried to make conversation and I tried not to cry. He told me I’m a needy fuck.

Not really, but that’s the gist of it.

Eventually, I told him to leave. I sat there and smoked and kept trying not to cry.

Later, he popped in agin to say hello. He glazed over me for five minutes and then gave me a small kiss goodbye. That hurt more than if he hadn’t popped in again.

I wrote some of my essay and smoked a lot. I didn’t eat but I drank some wine. I felt hopeless. I realised that I am either an emotional horizon or an emotional clam.  I felt hopeless because I realised that I cannot function on medication, nor can I function off them. I felt hopeless because I had made every relationship textbook mistake when I should fucking know better. I felt hopeless because I am increasingly doubtful of having a healthy relationship, of being happy and stable.

On the plus side, despite my latest fuck-ups, I am very happy I moved to Melbourne, I adore my masters and, somehow, I think I like myself (or something like it).

I leave you with one of my (unfortunately) favourite quotes:

“Have you ever been in love? Horrible isn’t it? It makes you so vulnerable. It opens your chest and it opens up your heart and it means that someone can get inside you and mess you up. You build up all these defenses, you build up a whole suit of armor, so that nothing can hurt you, then one stupid person, no different from any other stupid person, wanders into your stupid life…You give them a piece of you. They didn’t ask for it. They did something dumb one day, like kiss you or smile at you, and then your life isn’t your own anymore. Love takes hostages. It gets inside you. It eats you out and leaves you crying in the darkness, so simple a phrase like ‘maybe we should be just friends’ turns into a glass splinter working its way into your heart. It hurts. Not just in the imagination. Not just in the mind. It’s a soul-hurt, a real gets-inside-you-and-rips-you-apart pain. I hate love.”

-Neil Gaiman



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I drink, I laugh, I smoke, I write.

3 thoughts on “Bitch, I Don’t Ask for Help & Other Charming Lashings”

  1. Yep. I cooly acknowledge the benefits of meds, the ever-changing roster of meds, because…well, that’s what reasonable, logical adults with responsibilities DO. So I do that. But sometimes I think back to the event that led to me first being diagnosed&dosed and I dance the “What if…” with the fantasy of that event never having happened. And sometimes, even though I can’t construct any sequence of facts where that event – an accident – was my fault or foreseeable or avoidable no matter how hard I try, I let the thought dwell in my head that I started this spiral and fucked up the rest of my life (in relation to what it could have been…as if I know that) in one instant. But I didn’t come to sully your blog with my own aimless ramblings…I came to share this (which someone shared with me a few weeks ago):

    1. Urrgghh, I’m not sure how I feel about meds right now. Anti-depressants make me high & mood stabilisers zombify me so I’m wary of the combination. But obviously I’m a mess without them. I’m considering natural remedies & I’m looking for a support group. Hopefully that’ll be enough to take the edge off. Worst case scenario, I wouldn’t say no to a little ECT.

      & Ben, you certainly did not fuck up your life. If it hadn’t been for that accident (what happened?), you wouldn’t have received your diagnosis & who knows what would have happened? I consider myself lucky to have been diagnosed at 25.

      Hyperbole and a Half! I used to follow her when she first started out. Those cartoons are hilarious! I will definitely be sharing them once I’m back on Facebook.

      Hope you’re well, Ben.
      All the best.

  2. Yeah, she has been mostly absent for a long time due to depression and those two posts are really candid explorations of what that’s been like. No answers, just “this is what I’ve felt.” As far as meds, I have always been a vocal defender of new medicines (well, more of defending the science, the process of discovery, than specific meds). In my case I think the internal frustration is unique to my circumstances. I’ll share about the accident later but I will say it was a workplace accident that cut the blood off to my brain and left me at least partially paralyzed for roughly 2 years (which led me to marry someone I had come to realize I should NOT marry simply because I didn’t know if I would ever function alone again). So up to a specific day in 1998 I was one person, and from the moment I was fully aware again I’ve been someone else completely…someone who needs the meds whereas the original person never considered being in that condition. Increasing the frustration, I can’t remember who that first person was or what he was like at all…so I will never be capable of saying I’ve made it back to the person I was. It is very frustrating and inevitably hurts those around us as well as ourselves.

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