abnormal psychology, anxiety, depression, health, mental abuse, mental health, mental illness, neurology, psychology, social anxiety

Mental Illness caused by Psychological Damage and Abuse

* this post is in honor of Silvergirl who is a wonderful wounded healer and has an excellent blog on wordpress*

People with mental illness often have psychological damage from being subject to “Situations that Must never Be”.  This is my phrase for any situation which is causing log term damage to a person in any physical or mental way.

These situations that must never be, are many and come in many forms. Any situation of mental abuse or physical abuse of a person should not be. The sad fact is that these situations occur every day. People are suffering in relationships like these as we speak. You might be one of them.

You have chosen to click on this post because the title of it struck a nerve with you. Most likely you have been abused in your lifetime. It may have been during your childhood and / or it may have been as an adult. Many people that were abused as children , end up in abusive relationships as adults.

The psychological damage from living in abuse is extensive and can cause depression, severe anxiety, OCD, PTSD, and other mental illnesses. It is also common that people with other mental disorders such as depersonalization disorder, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder , social anxiety and  insomnia have experienced abuse during their lifetimes.

As people with mental illness, we sometimes make choices that are harmful to us that other people would not make. We are so used to things being abnormal and painful that we tend to not notice the red flags of an abusive relationship until it is too late.

The mental illness causes us to end up in codependent , manipulative, abusive relationships. On the flip side, these relationships that cause severe mental suffering break our poor brains and we end up with mental illness that we may not have already had.

Which one comes first? The mental illness, the psychological damage, the abusive relationships? It is hard for us to tell. If you think back through your past , if you can remember, then you will most likely identify abuse against your mental health. 

Situations of trauma cause PTSD. The people who tend to be the most affected are the ones who have had some kind of mental trauma in their past.

There are cases of severe trauma (like military horrors,)  that can cause PTSD , even of the person had a “normal” past. But a lot of the people who endure ptsd that never seems to go away, had some form of abuse prior to that trauma.

It is sometimes difficult to identify abuse from our past/ For some people it is glaringly obvious and for others it has been blocked out by their own brain. The brain wants to protect itself from further trauma and will black out memories and deny us access to them.

People with psychological damage often have more than 1 or 2 mental disorders. Some of us have so many that we feel kind of stupid “showing off our list” to people.

It feels like it will be disbelieved to write out the list such as…

…OCD, insomnia, depersonalization disorder, PTSD,  generalized anxiety disorder, domestic abuse victim, depression,  ACOA, eating disorder,  codependence,  social anxiety and derealization disorder, and avoidant personality disorder.

 See? …Now I feel weird.  My list  looks crazy to me… Really I look at that list and wonder how the hell I get through the day at all…barely by the skin of my teeth sometimes… that is …when i am able to get out of bed…

You are not alone if your list looks as long as mine does. My mental abuse goes back into childhood and I also had abuse as an adult victim of domestic abuse.  Things that occur in life that other people could “suck it up” about and get through, send me into severe post traumatic stress.

mental health, mental illness, teen health, teen mental health, teen mental illness

Facebook post by my Daughter about Not Attaching Your Self Esteem to the Comments or Lack their Of / Cyberbullying and Our Children

The post below is by my youngest  daughter. She gave me permission to post it here on wordpress. I thought it was insightful and a very interesting perspective from a young person about the internet. Our children are very connected with the social media and their self esteem is directly linked  what goes on between their internet  “friends”  and followers.

Facebook is a social media that involves short burst types of posts and posting of photos and some artwork.  Many of the people on facebook are superficial and also status quo oriented. Posting very meaningful things does not always get the response you want, unless you are in a closed group on facebook, specializing in mental illness or abuse.

My daughter has learned that facebook is not the best place to use for a self esteem meter.

She also posts artwork and writings on deviantart which is a better place for meaningful and inspired types of work. She gets more intelligent feedback there. You can post things on deviantart like drawings, computer generated art  story writing and poetry.

I am very proud of her for making the observations which you will see below. I am proud of her that she has been able to evaluate the shortcomings of facebook and does not attach her self esteem to the responses she gets from the people on facebook.

Our children must learn to deal with criticism and stupid comments on the internet. They also have to deal with bullying in an internet world, that we did not grow up with.  The children and teenagers can have harmful mental damage done to them by cyber-bullying and inappropriate comments.

Our children can end up with mental illness (depression, severe anxiety, suicidal ideations) over the interactions on the internet.

They have to learn that every comment is not true or worth taking to heart. Also that lack of comments on something they post, does not mean that they are not important.

Please enjoy her post and comment anything below that you would like me to convey to her.

(sorry if this post offends anyone im just kinda joking around though it is also kinda true)

~facebook logic~

* someone makes a meaningful post/shares meaningful thing, post gets ignored*

* someone makes a  stupid post, gets tons of comments*

*good artist uploads an art piece, is told they suck and the only person who comments anything nice is person’s boyfriend*

*bad artist uploads art piece, is told they should be an animator and is the best artist ever*

*someone uploads something intelligent, is told they are stupid*

*someone uploads something super idiotic, is told they are the next Albert Einstein*

anxiety, anxiety attack, blogging, depression, health, insomnia, life, mental disorders, mental health, mental health disorders, mental illness, ocd, social anxiety, suicude

Mental Illness Bloggers are in Touch with their Vulnerability and Humanity

Blogs about mental illness are some of the most captivating blogs that I love to read. I am interested in the topics they cover but that is not the only reason why they speak to me.

Bloggers that have struggled with mental illness have had to learn to be in touch with their humanity. In order to write your own mental illness, you have to dive deep into the darkest corners of your mind. The descriptions that they write are very vivid and full of human depth. There is a sense of soul searching that draws you into the posts.

I am not just counting the blogs that identify themselves as having mental illness. There are also some bloggers that suffer from OCD, depression, social anxiety and severe mental turmoil that chose not to identify their blog as such. However the content of their posts has very vivid descriptions of the mental torment they experience.

The level of depth to the mental illness blogs makes me feel in touch with my own vulnerability and humanity.

People with mental illness are used to being vulnerable. I am not saying that we enjoy it, but that we have had no choice but to accept it.

There is a strong ability to identify and describe the human condition, amongst mental illness bloggers.

There is also support between the bloggers to deal with the most painful aspects of being human.

We have had to endure such tremendous trials on a day to day basis that we are keenly in touch with human mental and emotional suffering. The reality of our daily suffering is part of our lives. People with mental illness have to deal with extreme levels of emotion every single day.

Our brains cause us to suffer on a regular basis, in ways that most people do not understand.

Other people experience severe emotional suffering when someone they love dies or is severely ill. They experience loss when they lose someone they love to a break up or to death.

People experience fear when they are in a situation of immediate danger, like a car accident of a fire. They feel fear over losing a job and feelings of depression over having to settle for things in life to be less that they hoped for.

People with mental illness experience the extreme levels of depression, severe anxiety, loneliness, fear and trauma on a daily basis.

 We experience the fear of being triggered into any of those severe emotional states. Our brains are a constant threat to our emotional well being and our ability to function.

 The phrase “there is nothing to fear but fear itself” is not a comforting one to us.

Life is always a risk to us. Every decision we make and everything we attempt to do, has the potential to utterly destroy our mental state and in some cases… our lives.

Many of us are in constant fear of interacting with other people due to stigma about mental illness.  We  also fear our inability to interact with people in a “normal” and acceptable way.

Many social activities that other people take for granite are potentially hazardous to us either in a physical way or in a mental way.

We can be easily triggered in a matter of seconds into a completely different mental state.

Since we go through the extremes of human emotion so often, we are very in tune with the human condition. We are very aware that we are vulnerable. We are constantly subject to our own mental vulnerability.

All people are vulnerable but they do not realize it in the same way  that   people with mental illness do. The brain is a very fragile thing. It can become traumatized and damaged. Everyone is in danger of having their brain organization becoming disrupted. People take for granite that their brains will always function in the same way they are currently functioning.

The mental illness bloggers talk of fear and anxiety in a very human and real way. We are in touch with the human condition of fear. We can write descriptively about fear very well.

We are also very in touch with depression and sadness. Mental illness bloggers can write very descriptive, artistically worded pictures of sadness and emptiness, that other people cannot access.

Sadness is a very human state. The vulnerability to depression , emptiness and loneliness makes us very in touch with our human side. Being in touch with the humanity in ourselves allows us to perceive life and ourselves in a way that is different from other people.

We have to feel things in a very extreme way. This is what our brains do… They force us to feel… often times..  too much.

If we were a painting, it would have very black blacks and very red reds. The colors would be very dark in places and very bright in others. The grays are harder to come by, unless you are currently on a medication cocktail that will allow for some calm colors for a while.. that is…until you build up a tolerance or …for some reason known to no one…your brain chemistry just suddenly decides that the particular med combination no longer will work.

The struggle to find the right medications, self medicate, and reach out to any form of relief that will hold you, is a constant and daily struggle.

We know what is feels like to be constantly reaching out for help, only to find that real help is hard to come by.  Mental illness bloggers are very in tune with their need for other people. They are able to reach out with their writing to others who are suffering.

Although I am sorry for the suffering of my fellow bloggers, I treasure your blogs. I love to read posts and feel the humanity in them.

Mental illness bloggers have the unique ability to be in touch with the tormented human brain and to write mental pain, in a way that others can feel.

The humanity of the mental illness bloggers staggers the reader’s mind and stimulates the senses. When I read the posts, I feel connected with emotions in myself. I feel validated about my own mental suffering. I feel a kinship with not just people with mental illness, but with humanity.

Blessing to all,

Annie

elder care, life, loss, poem, poetry

To My Nurses …..( from the point of view of a very old person)

** this poem is written from the point of view of a nursing home resident as I have observed that they feel from my many years of working and volunteering  in nursing homes””

TO MY NURSES…

Just because I am old

Does not mean I should be discarded

I was young like you once

Full of life and very big hearted

I raises my babies , just like you are

I loved my husband and drove a car

I had a beautiful house 

that I took care of with love

I baked Christmas cookies

and knitted my grandchildren gloves

I bet you don’t know but I worked really hard

I struggled and fought for my family

I felt things very deeply and cared very much

I had family and friends whose lives that I touched

I once was important and had a real life

Just like you do and you never think 

That your life will pass away just like mine did

You’ll end up with nothing you worked for, in the end

You’ll lose your driver’s license 

and your favorite car too

You’ll lose your independence

and people’s respect 

You’ll watch your spouse die and miss him forever

You’ll dread the phone ringing

because more and more family dies

But you might keep going, on with your life

Even thought there is nothing left that matters

You will not understand why God makes you stay

and does not take you home 

to heaven 

to be with your loved ones

The only people you will have to talk to at all

will be the nurses in the nursing home 

and the patients that do not remember your name

So, please have compassion for me and be patient

Because someday it could be you in my place

All the power you feel now 

and the things that you love

and the ability to make choices about your day

Could be taken away , never to be seen again

and the life that you once thought was yours…

will become a sad memory that no one wants to listen to

Including the nurses that will take care of you

adult children of alcoholics, alzheimers disease, mental abuse, mental health, mental illness

Lack of Compassion for Depressed Nursing Home Residents

Something happened at work that really offended and upset me. It is so disgusting that nurses, doctors and other people in the health field are so insensitive and uneducated about mental illness. Health care should be about the whole person and not just their physical body.

We have a resident that lives in this particular facility who suffers from moderate to severe depression , that fluctuates from time to time. Sometimes she is very depressed. When she is in  that downward spiral , she tends to stay in bed. She will still eat if food is brought to her room, but  she does not want to go out to the big dining room and interact with people.

Being an introverted person myself, I can attest to the fact that it is very traumatic, triggering, and extremely anxiety provoking to have to be in a room full of people when you are is a state of depression. You simply cannot do it.

Forcing yourself to go out amongst people who will not understand your mood, is not a good thing to do to your brain. All those people having small talk and asking you “how are you” is like a torture chamber.

So, this sweet little old lady was in a very depressed state today. We will call her Nora. So, i went in to visit Nora at 4pm, when I began my shift.   I could see that she still had her pajamas on and had not been out of bed all day. This is a clear sign that she had spiraled down into a depression state.

She said that she did not feel well and that she did not feel up to coming out to the big room for dinner. I went over the dinner menu with her and together we decided that she would eat scrambled eggs and toast in her room. I then left the room to place her order with the kitchen and requested a tray be brought to her room. The kitchen was no problem.

Then I went back to Nora’s room to let her know that the tray had been ordered. As I opened the door to the room, I saw that my supervisor (the charge nurse) was in the room, speaking with Nora. The supervisor said to me that Nora would have to have a “Sick Tray”.

I learned today that  Sick Tray is a tray that they give to people who have a stomach virus and are too sick to eat a real meal. It is to keep them from vomiting up all of their dinner. You know when you have a tummy sickness, you don’t want to eat .

The Sick Tray consists of hot tea, gingerale  jello, and toast . It is not something that you are supposed to force on someone. It is mainly to make sure that they have something offered to them, even if they say they do not want to eat at all. What it is not , is something to be used to withhold food from someone.

Yes, that is what I said. Withhold food! So sick, isn’t  it ??

This nurse said to me the following, “Nora is not sick. She does this all the time. She is JUST depressed. She is saying she is sick but she is not.  If she is going to stay in bed sick then she gets a Sick Tray.”

I asked her if there was any physical reason Nora could not have the scrambled eggs and toast that she wanted.

The nurse said “NO. But she does this all the time that she refuses to get out of bed. If she is going to fake being sick just because she does not feel like coming out, then she can just have a Sick Tray”

This is punishment. This is a clear punishment of someone because they have a mental health issue. This punishment is unfair and will cause the depression to get worse. Poor Nora was hungry and did want to to eat. She asked for the eggs and there was absolutely no reason she could not have them.

The supervisor was so disgusted by Nora’s continued pattern of depression ans self isolation that she decided to punish her by actually making her go hungry.

I was so upset and angry but there was nothing I could do. i did go back in to the room late in the shift. I won’t say weather ot not I snuck her in a snack. What is your guess? (wink, wink )

But what if I had not been there? This will happen again and again. To make her go hungry and to treat her with such disrespect, is detrimental to her mental health. It further isolates her.

She was willing to have me visit her in the room. The right thing to do would have been to bring her whatever she wanted from te kitchen and for me to sit with her while she ate. Then I could spend some time to talk with her about how she was feeling and she would have at least had a dinner she enjoyed.

What else can I say? I have hundreds of stories like this. I have collected them for 5 years. There is little or o compassion for people with mental illness in these facilities.

There are a lot of elderly people in nursing homes that have severe depression due to the many losses they have experienced. They have lost their home, their spouse, their car, their drivers license, their pets and many of their friends and family have passed away.

it is a very hard time of life and many people end up depressed and isolated, when they become old This is a horrible failure of the health care system and a lack of compassion from health care workers.

More awareness and re-training of the nurses is needed, if people are going to have lives worth living in the long term care facilities.

Blessings,

Annie

Uncategorized

Safe

Annie's Poetry

Cars make noises

as they drive by outside

I want to be inside

where it is safe

Sirens are loud

and invade my nervous system

I want to be  inside

where it is safe

People passing by the house

making noises

that remind me

I do not want to go out there

I want to be inside

where it is safe

Safe inside the house

I am safe inside the house

But where do I go

if I want to be

Safe Inside My Mind?

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Uncategorized

The Oneness of All

GentleKindness

Why do you tell me

Who you think I should be

I know who I am

I’m Annie

That’s me

I know what I like and I

know what I don’t

 Sounds

of the ocean

 Smell

of the grass

 Taste of sweet kisses

Touch of a hand

Two spirits connecting

Compassion

and love

Priorities

In the right place

Where they go

True hearts when they break

Tears when they flow

These things are important

I know it is so

So don’t try

to woo me

With gossip

and shame

Of others

who need me

The truth

is quite plain

Mundane conversation

Just bores me to death

My call

is to people

With truth on their breath

I speak what I feel

And I speak what I know

Humanity’s oneness

Should be

the first goal

Love unconditional

Mercy and grace

If you look

in your hearts

You will see

a small trace

View original post 15 more words

Uncategorized

Mental Illness Stigma

GentleKindness

“What is Stigma?
· An attempt to label a particular group of people as less worthy of respect than others
· A mark of shame, disgrace or disapproval that results in discrimination
· Not just a matter of using the wrong word or action – its about disrespect”

quote from NAMI multicultural action center web site

People with mental health issues sometimes have to put off receiving needed treatment, due to stigma in our culture. Once they are diagnosed with a mental illness, people  have to live with the consequences. There are potential consequences in regards to employment, insurance and education.

The Americans with Disabilities Act was passed in 1990. According to the Department of Labor web site ,The Disabilities Act protects disabled persons in the following ways…

“prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities in employment, transportation, public accommodation, communications, and governmental activities. “

Interestingly, when I went to the Disability,gov…

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blogging, bunnies, insomnia, mental illness, pets

3:15 am … time for all good little insomniacs to go to sleep

3:15 am…time for all good little insomniacs to go to sleeeeeeep. The bunny was running and hopping all over the place in my bedroom. He made up a new game to entertain himself.

I had the cage door open and he would run really fast toward the cage and jump in like he was diving. Then he would run back out again.

The he ran even faster and dove in and ran back out again. he got going so fast that he was making the cage slide a little on the floor and it would make a loud bang when he jumped into it.

he was so funny. He finally wore himself out and put himself to bed. He went into the cage and lay down. This was nice because I did not have to chase him all over the place to catch him, to put him to bed.

So then I pet him and he laid his head in my hand to cuddle for a few minutes. Then I closed the door and he is next to my bed, in the cage, on the floor.

So I have company to sleep tonight. I should bring the cage in every night because I like him there and I think he likes being next to me rather than in the other room.

I hope you all have a good sleep. Blessings to all,

Annie

child abuse, domestic abuse, domestic violence

Poem for the Baby lost to Domestic Violence

Days pass and minutes tick

but my memory does not fade

I carried you in my belly safe

like all good mothers do

I dreamed of when I’d hold you close

and sing sweet things to you

And see you smiling up at me

with love and adoration

Because I was your mommy

and you knew i loved you so

I knew that you would do great things

and be  a light upon the world

I wanted you to laugh and play

and let your magic swirl

But it was not to be that way

I would never see you grow

Your light was extinguished way too soon

and it was so unfair, I know

I never got to tell you

how very much I’ll always care

So now this is my way

of letting you know what’s in  my heart

I’ll always love you as my child

I did right from  the start

I’ll always be your mother

and you’ll always be my angel

I know I’ll see you again

and our hands will hold each other’s

Because mother’s love their babies

and the babies love their mothers

*I wrote this for someone who lost her baby by abuse during pregnancy