Day 3: What treatment or coping skills are most effective for you?
I participated in 6 months of inpatient schema therapy which was really great for me. This helped me with my BPD. Perhaps having to sit down for 6 months and break it all down into my mind is what this really worked for me. It was all broken down into every group I went to, plus we had one group where the therapist added in a bit of DBT, but not much. Schema therapy really was great though.
I also did quite a bit of CBT here and there. It helped me when I really thought about it, but I never would actually practice it outside of a hospital setting. When I was inpatient, and had the sheets in front of me, had to do the assignments, it all made sense. Outside of the hospital — I just could never make myself think of it.
Outside of therapy programs though, using my coping skills is really the best thing for me. When I am able to bring myself out of my “funk” enough to actually do something ….
- writing on here has been amazing!
- walking or running
- support groups (NAMI)
- grounding techniques
those are the ones I try to use most frequently as they seem to be the ones that work right now….they change quite frequently… like a few months ago, I was obsessed with knitting — nonstop!
Day 2: How do you feel about your diagnosis?
I have accepted my diagnosis for the most part. I get upset that I have to take medicine everyday. I get annoyed that I am going to have to deal with it for the rest of my life. I know that for my BPD I can get much better through therapy and even my PTSD can improve a lot with therapy. My bipolar is going to follow me all my life though. I have tried going off my meds and every single time I ended up in the hospital – repeatedly – 15 times – until I got committed to a state hospital.
I have accepted that I have to stay on my meds now. I have accepted that I need medications and I need therapy and I will battle these for the rest of my life.
I will be honest though, I am treated unfairly many times because of my borderline personality diagnosis. People think I am manipulative because of it. I personally, am not. I have doctors tell me that I tell them whatever I want to get the medications I want. The medications I have been on work perfectly for me – since I got out of the state hospital, my meds have kept me stable. The only med that hasn’t is my anxiety med – and I asked the state hospital to take me off of it because in the controlled environment in there, I thought I was better. I wish I hadn’t gone off of it. Now, everyone here thinks I am just manipulating them because of my BPD. There is more than just that instance though – I have heard it multiple times. I wish that my BPD diagnosis would just be taken off my chart.
But, it is what it is. I have what I have. I just need to continue to learn how to cope with it all and live with it all and focus my life on living better and coping better.
Why I Choose to Live –
During one of my hospitalizations, we had to create a safety place. We were given a bunch of note cards and asked to put lots of different things on them….
- Warning signs that we were getting depressed
- Triggers for our depression
- Coping skills
- Things that made us happy
- and of course – who we could call when we felt suicidal
One of those cards though also was for, why we chose to live. Why did we want to live. What were our reasons for living.
I found that safety place the other day and looked through it. Most of it is completely irrelevant at this point. None of those people are in my life anymore. The triggers and warning signs I suppose are still there. Coping skills have changed. Things that make me happy are not the same. And, the reasons why I choose to live — well I am pretty sure I completely made up every single one of those just so I could tell myself there was something to live for — or the hospital made me write something.
Like, I wrote I wanted to have kids — yeah I have never wanted kids. Or I never wanted a baby of my own, to come out of me (sorry if that was graphic). But since being molested and raped, I just don’t deal with things “down there” very well. Adoption of an older kid, maybe. I wanted to live for God — yeah I believe in God, but I also don’t think God will send me to hell for suicide (don’t really want to debate this on here, so please don’t). Anyway, there was a bunch of stuff that I really didn’t understand why I wrote it.
So I figured I would make a new list — perhaps one I really thought about. So here goes – Reasons why I choose to live:
- I want to be able to use my past to help others. I am currently going to grad school to gain a degree in which I will be able to work with those that have been victims of trauma and mental health issues. I have experienced both of these things and I never thought I would be able to actually to turn my experiences into something positive. I hope that I can help others, by knowing where they are coming from, and relating to them, to help them overcome their traumas. I want to live so I can achieve this goal – getting my degree and helping others.
- I want to live to see if I will ever be happy, like really happy. I don’t know how to explain this, but I guess I want to see if there really is that light at the end of the tunnel. If I give up today, and then tomorrow would have been the day that would have magically been better – that would really suck. So I guess I should just keep living to find out! I am going to live to find out if that day ever comes. If it never comes, I will be pretty upset, but it won’t really matter if I am upset when I am dead will it?
- I want to live to see how much the world changes! Seriously, I can’t believe how much has changed in the 26 years I have been alive already. Just hearing how much it has changed for those that are older than me too. I can’t even imagine staying alive to watch it advance even more. What if they make awesome cool technology things – well of course they are going to do that! What if they find a cure for the different types of mental illnesses? I’m sure they are going to find better treatments for them at the very least.
- I want to see what the next big movie is. I really enjoy movies and while a lot of them suck – there are also a lot of good ones out there. Did anyone see Boyhood? It is filmed over 12 years with the same actors, great movie! Had a bit of triggers in there for me as there is some abuse in it, but it was sooo good! That was the last movie I saw last week. Now, just to keep living to see the next great movie!
- Travel! I really want to travel all over! I choose to live because I have not been everywhere yet. I will not die til I have been everywhere. Even after I have been everywhere, I still have all these other reasons to live – but this is one of them! I want to go to so many different countries!
- Most importantly — I choose to live for me. I have always done everything for everyone else. I have gone to school for other people, well yes I know school is required as a child, but I picked my high school electives based on what I thought people wanted. I picked my college major based on what I thought people would want. I did enjoy is all, yes, but it was still all for everyone else. I have always felt the need to please every (which goes back to my history of abuse). I have never felt like I can do something just for me. So, I choose to live for me. Not for anyone else, but for me.
Why do you choose to live???
This is my challenge to create a “Pros and Cons” list of my day. “Pros” are the things that I am happy for, grateful for, or things that just made me smile. “Cons” are those things that you just want to forget about because they do nothing to help with your anxiety or mood that day. I actually almost forgot to do it today until Just Plain Ol’ Vic reminded me by commenting on yesterdays post! –Thanks for the reminder!
- I got a nice sleep thanks to my Ambien. It was making my nightmares worse, so I quit taking it for a while. But I wasn’t getting any sleep so I started it again, I’ll definitely take the sleep for now, even with some nightmares.
- I got a donation to my GoFundMe account to help me pay for my grad school tuition!!! Not a big one, but every little bit counts and I am so grateful for it!
- Mrs Doubtfire is on TV right now, this very minute as I write this! It is so funny. This movie came out when I was about 7 or 8 years old — I always wanted a nanny like him! I didn’t binge watch and Robin Williams movies this week/end, but this one happened to be playing on the Hallmark Movie Channel, so I thought I would have it on in the background since it is one of my favorites.
- Figured out an old student loan from undergrad. Ugh will they ever leave me alone?!?! At least for a little while longer I suppose. “Leandro” promised me that it would be taken care of, so I expect not to get another bill from them — again.
- I took a shower! This might not seem like an accomplishment, but when I get depressed I can go days without one. I hadn’t gone days, but I had gone two I think…and it was going to go on. I stopped it though… I stopped it and jumped in and took one – a nice long hot one.
- I am trying to raise money on GoFundMe, for school but I am not really getting anywhere. I am a little bit disappointed, but I know everyone is struggling with money. Still kind of makes me feel bad though. Keeping a positive attitude that it is all going to work out.
- My apartment is kind of a mess — well it is always a mess, but I told myself it would get cleaned today and that just didn’t happen.
- Slept a lot today, just kind of felt like escaping my emotions and didn’t feel like using any of my more active coping skills.
- I ate too much 😦 Nibbling on food when I was awake — peanuts add up quickly in calories…especially when they are honey roasted peanuts. I need some cocoa roasted almonds in those 100 calorie packs!
Goal for Tomorrow:
I really hope to be more awake for tomorrow. I do not want to sleep through the day. The weather here has been horrible – pouring rain almost all day long, literally, not more than 5-10 minutes of no rain or thunder. I want to try to get out to a gym and walk or run on a treadmill a bit. Just to get my anxiety out, get some energy burnt. I want to perhaps read a bit of some of the text books I have received in regards to my future classes in grad school. I want to maybe paint a small picture.
Now out of all of that — I just want to do one. Small steps. So if I just accomplish one of those, then I will be happy!
I have been challenged by Izzy to create a “Pros and Cons” list of my dad. Pros” are the things that I am happy for, grateful for, or things that just made me smile. “Cons” are those things that you just want to forget about because they do nothing to help with your anxiety or mood that day.
Sooo Here we go:
- Cleaned up my apartment
- Student Loan Bills in the mail – which I shouldn’t have
- Psychiatrist Bill in the mail – which I shouldn’t have
- Kind of just feeling under the weather
- Was all alone, no one to talk to today
- One panic attack
- Trying to figure out how to pay for Grad school…blah!
- Alive – Living another day, but I missed the sunrise — maybe tomorrow?
- Woke up early (Thanks to a good sleep with Ambien!)
- Had some time to read today
- Listened to the rain and thunder, like every other day in Tampa – actually can’t figure out if this is a pro or con, but today it will be a pro
- Restricted myself from eating absolutely everything today (no I don’t have an eating disorder, but I can eat emotionally when I get bored or sad or manic or whatever the case may me).
- I didn’t go out and spend any money, or even look online on Amazon to spend money – even though they have smile.amazon.com which donates money to my charity (which is actually where I get my cousneling)…. whew.. I spend way too much money on that site with my bipolar. Money I do not have. Everyday I beat that is a day to celebrate.
- I watched my DVR of the Last Comic Standing season finale – sooo funny!! Made me laugh
- Looking forward to starting Grad School in like 2 weeks, but refer to Con number 7.
Ok this is definitely hard! Over time I will get better at.
Anyone else want to take this challenge?
Just take your days, list your pros and cons for the day – that is it! It helps you see what your day was like, the good and the bad. Slowly helps you realize that not everything went bad, you do have good things in your life… even simple things. Izzy has done a better job at conveying that in her blog over the past two days than I did in this though!