Tag Archive: distress tolerance


It’s been a little while since I blogged last.

My oldest daughter ended up moving to Wellington 9 days ago.  As the new school in Wellington felt it was more beneficial for her to start this year in the remaining few weeks.  As that gives her more opportunities to reconnect with old friends from her old school in Wellington.

So I have been depressed every since the day she moved up there.  I think I was just keeping up a front for her until then.  I did not want her worrying about me as well as having her own anxieties.  I think I have cried every day since she moved.

I’ll be honest, I am angry at my husband.  I feel this is all on him and him not trying hard enough while she was still living with us.

She did ask me to break up with him in the weeks leading up to her move.

With her being gone, it is like half of me is gone.  My heart is most definitely broken with her not here.

I am glad that she is happy and she will have a happier life.  I was relieved to  hear that her first week at the new school went really well and I was happy seeing her happy when I skyped with her last night.

But the reality is, she is my first born and was my only child for 6 1/2 years and she will always be so special to me because of that.

I do love my younger 2 children of course.

I have been a huge mess mentally.  Feeling like I am not present in my life.  Like I am on auto pilot and just going through the motions.  I have been feeling very detached and like I have not been participating in life.  I do feel a certain degree of dissociation.

I have felt like dying or cutting or overdosing several times in the past 9 days.  On one particular night I was lying in bed wanting to go cut my wrists and I was trying to think of how I could do that without ruining my tattoos and since I could not come up with a way that would not ruin my tattoos, I decided not to.  So my tattoos are definitely a life saver at times.

I was thinking about overdosing on my sleeping tablets on Friday night.

So yeah, I am struggling A LOT.

I am feeling pretty miserable persistently.  My joy is non-existent.

I have been making bad choices for sure.  Drinking a fair bit.

Trying to explain my feelings, emotions and struggles can be difficult at times, but I always persist in trying my best to explain them.

Like I get that it is hard for my Mum to know I am still struggling big time with depression and I know she worries.  I have had this line from both her and my husband lately “it’s been over 2 years, you should be over this already”.  Yeah, top of the list of thing’s not to say to someone struggling with mental illness.

So I did my best to try and explain to my Mum that sometimes when people break mentally, they may never be the same as they were before that mental break and that time has nothing to do with it.  And I explained how my reaction to stress and distress has changed and how it is so much harder to manage my emotions now and regulate them and how I have less resilience to things then I used to.

I feel like my husband is over it.  I do regularly tell him he is free to go find someone who is not me with my issues.  Plus I am so sick of his fucken gaming and streaming and the amount of time devoted to that.  I just do not give a shit about my relationship anymore.  I’m over it.

He has his own issues and I am in no place to live with them and through them and support him.  They are too complex for me and quite frankly some of his issues come out very negatively and I do not like being around that.

I have spent a fair amount of time away from the house in the evening.  As that is when I feel at my worst and miss my oldest daughter the most.

Home is not where my heart is.  My heart is with my girl in Wellington.

I am truly heartbroken.

Just thinking about this and writing about this makes me extremely emotional and cry.

I LOVE HER SO MUCH!!!

And damn it, I have no alcohol to drink to numb these feelings and this pain.  Not that that is sensible or wise.

I have even been trying to find people to shout me some pot, with no success.  And I had not touched that for like 6 years, up until last week.  I got rather stoned off my face last week.  On the plus side I slept well LOL!

The only thing’s I enjoy lately is alcohol, seeing my best friend, being away from the house and the love of my children.

I’m sure there was more on my mind, but I feel I should go to bed now.  As I have been getting to bed way too late for ages.

Thank you for reading and following.

 

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Yup.  I finally got the guts to actually make the booking and get a tattoo.  Well actually I got 2.  I got the 1 in honour of my loved one’s who have passed away on my Dad’s side of the family and I got 1 in honour of my friend who recently committed suicide.  The 1 I got in honour of my friend is a gem which is aquamarine, which is actually his and my birth month, which is March.  We had always planned to get a friendship tattoo of this design, but neither of us had got around to it.  So I made sure I got it done and have dedicated it to him.

Here are the tattoos.

WIN_20150411_204228 WIN_20150411_204253

Oh yes and I seem to be in there too.  My hair is purplish/pink currently and I now have 2 lip piercings.

I must say regarding my mental health, I have been struggling a lot recently.  I have been feeling so exhausted emotionally and physically.  I feel tired really easily.  I am lacking motivation and definitely feeling depressed.  Lately it has been a struggle to get through the days.  I have found my tolerance to many things is really lacking and that is never good.  I just feel so low.  And I know a big part of that is related to the loss of my friend.  When things like this happen you really feel robbed.  It is so hard knowing he will never be there to talk to and relate with.

I really want some bloody therapy aye.  I have been pushing whomever can speed up this process to get onto their referrals asap.  As honestly I think it is bullshit that I have not had any talking and formal counselling at all since August 2013 and the downhill spiral way back then.  Yes I have had goal-focused DBT therapy, which granted taught me some skills, such as Distress Tolerance and Emotional Regulation.  But like I have been saying for probably nearly 2 years now, I need actual counselling.

I will admit on the night after I had been to my friend’s funeral, I got extremely drunk, self-harmed and spent the next 48 hours recovering and was really ill during that time.  To the extent I was going to ask to go to hospital.

I have been having sleep issues a fair majority of the time.  I had managed to get back down to 3 Quetiapine (75mgs), but after what happened to my friend I have had to increase it to anywhere between 4-9 (100-225mgs).  And my dreams have been way too surreal/lucid, to the point that during the day I think the content was a memory and not a dream.  I know this is not right.

Anywayz, got something nice to look forward to tomorrow.  It’s the Wedding Showcase in Nelson.  I think it may be similar to the Wedding Show that happens in October, just maybe a bit smaller.  But yeah, it sounds really good, so I’m looking forward to it.

That is all for now.  I better try eating something soon.  I was a bit sick earlier, so yeah, couldn’t eat.  Anyway, ciao for now.

It is currently the 1st day of the New Year. It is 2015.

I did not realise I have not blogged since my oldest daughter moved back with us.

So the first day back, my oldest daughter was quite upset. As coming back to live with us full time was not what she had wanted outcome wise. And from what she has said to me, she has been given the impression that I was the only person who wanted her to come back to live with us. And that all the other people at the CYFS(child, youth and family) FGC( family group conference) review last month did not want the same thing. So I had to explain to her, that they all had to agree to her coming back to live with us for that to happen. The first night was hard for her and she was quite upset and said some hurtful things. Such as, she wished her former carer was her real Mum and she wished she had been her baby, who came out of her tummy. That naturally really hurt. Once I had composed myself and become less upset, I talked to her and explained how she felt was quite normal considering everything and that if I were in her position, I would have likely felt the same way. That helped a lot. Naturally there have been ups and downs with this huge change in our family dynamics. But slowly we are getting things sorted.

I do find at some times my fiancé does not help things regarding how he bonds with my oldest daughter and I often need to remind him of how his tone or approach needs to change. Often he will take that the wrong way and he will try and suggest I am not disciplining her when he thinks I should or he just comes up with some defence. I remind him I am helping him do some actual parenting of her. He seems to think I am making him the enemy. When what I am doing is encouraging him to be a parent to her. There can not be this separation that used to exist in parenting my daughter. As she notices when he is putting it all on me and that can make her feel rejected and like our younger 2 children are more important to him. I do tend to find he can be all keen and persistent at first with these things and then things get hard or stressful and he reverts back to his past behaviour. It is extremely frustrating. I said to him tonight he needs to show her some empathy. As he does not show much, if any. And this is why he tends to think I am not disciplining her, because I can do both discipline and compassion. Gee, I am just ok with emotions and in touch with them, so that puts me in a better place to approach times when my daughter is feeling sensitive or emotional.

I have been reading a really good book lately. It is called ‘Borderline Personality Disorder Demystified’ by Robert O Friedel.

Gosh, I had the most nasty, vivid dream last night. It felt so damn real! It went basically like this, I had gone downhill big time for some reason and the mental health people from the Psych Ward in Nelson were coming to get me to take me to the ward. Weird! Damn vivid dreams! They really screw with me head.

Last week was a really hard week for me. I had run out of my antidepressants and had not had any for 2 days, I was under a whole bunch of stress, money wise big time and then I got bad news about my grandma and her health. So I was a huge mess emotionally. My distress tolerance was just not there. It just goes to show how fast I can go downhill and just how essential it is that I never miss my medication.

So now I am in PMS mode. So also not a great person to be around this week. Last week when I was without medication, I had bad road rage and I was not even driving! I was the passenger and this lady was tailgating us really dangerously. So I was facing her direction, giving her the middle finger and the punching gesture. Oh I was worked up! That is quite extreme even for me.

The last day or so, with good old PMS, I have naturally really not been in the mood for having my buttons pushed. I told my fiancé if he dares to shave our sons hair, I will punch him seriously, my fiancé I mean. As he did say today he was going to and I said “no way are you doing that!” So I gave him a haircut. So he had better not undermine me and try shaving his hair. As that would be the ultimate slap in the face. To be fair, my usual tolerance and filter kind of lacks when I have PMS. Anyway, enough about that.

Oh, that origami I mentioned in my last post. Well I did try it again and success!

We are still looking for a place. It was not looking so great for us recently, as most houses are through real estate agents and they rejected us due to our bad credit. So that meant looking through only private rentals. But we looked through a private rental this week, which looks perfect. So here’s hoping we have success with our application.

Right, getting tired. Better go. Thank you for reading 🙂

I have been noticing lately that my anxiety is increasing. It becomes evident in some simple day to day tasks. The task that has been highlighting it, has been hanging out the washing. You see our washing line is on the veranda and it is one of those pull out/retractable lines and one end of it is near the edge of the veranda. Which initially when we moved here would get my anxiety up when I would be hanging clothes up by the barrier. But that had stopped happening some time ago. So noticing in the last few days that it is provoking my anxiety has made me very aware my anxiety is unusually higher.

And I have noticed my mind playing tricks on me lately too. Such as interpreting words in my mind quite differently from the words on the calendar.

I think the approaching FGC(family group conference) review has a big part to play in these things. As I feel, though I am trying to avoid thinking about the approaching date. In the back of my mind I am very awaiting that date is slowly creeping closer. And that unnerves me and creates small moments of panic. It has most definitely had a negative effect on my sleep. As in the last few weeks. I have had to take as many as 9 x 25 mgs Quetiapine to get to sleep. And I had managed to get back down to 1-2 x 25 mgs Quetiapine previous to that. Which was great. So my minds ability to require more assistance and more medication, is not great. As the norm now seems to be 4-6 x 25 mgs Quetiapine and averaging most often 5 x 25 mgs Quetiapine. Earlier this week either 4 or 5 was just not working. So I ended up going into the lounge and eventually fell asleep on the couch. I most definitely have moments of secretly freaking out about not falling asleep at all and how detrimental to my mental health that would be.

There is still at least 2 weeks until the review and I am a tad worried about these increasing issues with anxiety and sleep.

Today I was feeling quite anxious and blunted. These things make me worry. As does the unknown. The unknown being the outcome of the FGC review. That makes me quite nervous.

The financial worries are not helping either. They make me feel quite overwhelmed and at times panicked.

My distress tolerance is not great either.

I am actually very grateful my fiancé is not working this week. As I am not sure how I would be coping without him.

I had best try get some sleep now though. As it is quite late.

Good Night.

Well I have definitely been struggling. I am not sure if the fact that I am not really under the mental health team here yet has any bearing on that. Possibly.

I know it’s always going to be hard moving somewhere new, well newish, as I haven’t lived in Nelson for nearly 11 years. And I have only managed to properly reconnect with 1 old friend. And being how vital social contact is to my well being, it is understandable that with the lack of social contact, I feel somewhat lonely and isolated.

Due to the changes in my ability to cope since last August, things do effect me more easily and I am therefore more susceptible to more regular bouts of depression and more easily distressed.

I do acknowledge though, I have learned some useful tools from the DBT(dialectal behaviour therapy) Distress Tolerance workshop I did earlier this year. And I do believe I have definitely developed some resiliency.

I guess maybe I expect too much from myself at times and I need to be more kind to myself and not see bouts of depression as me lacking in any way. I need to remember I have had no formal therapy, so that has some bearing on things too.

I have lost someone close to me recently and I tend to flip between denial that this person is no longer and wishing it was all a big mistake and that they aren’t really gone. And then I grieve for this person’s family.

I have been going between feeling numb lately and feeling like I want to just not be in reality right now. Like I would rather just sleep all day and every day until my mood improves. Of course that is not in any way helpful. Plus my fiance does not allow me to sleep the whole day either. And yes, I do see that is a big signal I am definitely experiencing a bout of depression at present. There is that symptom and also not wanting to leave the house and delaying it as long as possible. And yes, I know this is not helpful or healthy.

I have a really hard time when friend’s of mine ask questions on my facebook photo’s, as to why my oldest daughter is not in them and where she is. And naturally I do not really want to make it extremely public knowledge among my every facebook friend, about the involvement of CYFS(child, youth & family) and why my daughter does not live with me.

I find also, the reminder by such questions about her not being here tends to make me feel down and upset.

I do not like to be more regularly reminded then I already am, that she is not here. As I already struggle with it and find it upsetting, without more reminders.

I must admit, I have been quite irresponsible with money. Sometimes I tend to do this unintentionally as a response to financial stress. I don’t know why really, as it makes things worse. I guess it is just that part of my personality that tends to want to live in a fantasy and live in a bit of a dream world and not be in the unpleasantness of my reality. It is really very irresponsible.

I guess sometimes I just want to escape my reality and that is why I do such things.

The reality is, we have accumulated a fair bit of debt since last August. Especially since my fiance resigned back in November last year. Our debt has got so bad that the budget advisor here has suggested we get an SIO(summary installment order). But that may very well mean we have to give the car back to the finance company.

So when my fiance found out we had very little money left from the bond refund, he got quite angry and I of course felt really guilty. So I went to the room and cried for a good while. And of course I start blaming myself for all the financial stress. Then I get to thinking, why does he not just find someone else. As I am sick of feeling like a burden, being a burden and I feel to blame for all this and so much guilt and I just do not want anyone else being dragged down by this. But clearly he loves me. Even if I struggle to understand why and how anyone still could after all this.

Hmm, my older sister. She still does seem to have quite unreasonable mood swings. As one minute she is asking a favour and then I check in with her and ask how things are, I try to express concern and empathy and she bites my head off. And that is upsetting and that is hard to deal with. As I am only trying to let her know I care and I want to support her if I can. I just wish she would stop throwing this back in my face or any of our families face who tries to do the same. I will not be so blunt as to tell her I feel she needs to get therapy and start to resolve some issues, so she can start to experience some joy again in her life. As I know her well enough to know that would not be taken as it is meant and that there would be a huge backlash to expressing such things. I wish she could be more reasonable.

You know honestly, sometimes I take more of my sleep medication then I should, not because I can’t get to sleep, but because I want to sleep for longer and not deal with reality or the day ahead. But I fear if I admitted that to any of the mental health team here, once I am under them, that they will limit my medication and switch back to more regular pick ups again. I know I shouldn’t do this.

Sometimes I think about trying to get to sleep without my medication and then I worry that if I try that, I may not get to sleep or I will undo any ability my body does have to get me to sleep naturally, by being too anxious about it. I guess I just need to again, stop being so hard on myself and just take time to recover and not try to hurry the process. As I know the last thing I need is to become deprived of sleep and I do not want to risk that.

Ok, I can’t think of anything else I wanted to write about, so I’ll just leave it there.

So I don’t know if what I’m going to write is something I have written about before. The downside to having a crap short term memory. But anyway, I will write about it either way. As it is on my mind a lot.

I personally do not want my suffering to be for nothing. So, no matter how unpleasant, how uncomfortable, how scary, how unfair and how horrible this journey has been or is, regarding my mental health. I will always try to turn it into something positive, useful and purposeful. So that way my suffering has a purpose.

I will always be honest and open about my suffering and not be ashamed of it. I will always share my experience and blog about it. As I want others to know the real me, I want others who are suffering to know they are not alone in their suffering and I want to encourage others to share and be open about their suffering, if they feel they can be. And I want to help give others the strength to reach out, ask for help, hopefully inspire others and help reduce the stigma of mental illness, as well as any shame felt.

So, even though at times I may feel broken, no matter what, this journey will not break me.

Now I want to touch on a really good DBT(dialectal behavioural therapy) technique called ‘Radical Acceptance’. It is a technique I learnt about last year some time, but have only really put it into practice since mid-December. And more so lately.

Radical Acceptance, as I would describe it is, accepting your reality, feelings and emotions, no matter how unpleasant those feelings and experiences are. It’s about saying to yourself “hey, this feeling, situation or emotion might suck and may be unfair, but I will accept that this is where I am at and how I feel and that’s ok. And I don’t have to like what this feels like and that is ok too.”

Using this technique has been a life saver, literally and has helped me get through everything I have been through since August last year.

And another part of DBT is accepting your emotions and letting them come and sit with you and eventually pass. As emotions ARE healthy and are definitely necessary. I believe this technique is referred to in DBT as ‘Emotional Regulation’.

I found this website, which covers the DBT techniques and explains them more: http://www.dbtselfhelp.com/html/dbt_lessons.html

‘Distress Tolerance’ is another DBT technique that I know a small amount about and will being learning more about in the next 5 weeks. As I am attending a DBT based Resiliency course through Lower Hutt Community Mental Health, that goes for 6 weeks and covers the technique of ‘Distress Tolerance’. Last week was the 1st week of this course.

I definitely acknowledge my need for one to one therapy though. As it is really difficult having been through what I have been through and am going through without having any therapy at all. And I really do need something that is just for me and about me, where I can go and be totally honest and start to work through things. This reality was making me feel quite upset last night and I was crying for some time about it. As I desperately need some therapy. And I definitely do feel frustrated that only half the fix has been addressed. That being the chemical imbalance component, which is managed with antidepressants.

Pretty sure that’s all I had on my mind to share today. If not, I’ll come back and write another post.

That it certainly can!

At times it is getting to me this week. But I’m trying to practice the DBT(dialectical behavioural therapy) technique of ‘radical acceptance’ and sit with my emotions and unpleasant feelings.

I started the 6 week DBT ‘distress tolerance’ course this week. It was good meeting the others in the group and starting to touch on some DBT techniques. I’m looking forward to the next 5 weeks.

I have been feeling close to tears last night and today. Things like the fact our food grant entitlement through WINZ(work and income) has now been all used. So we have no option there on the week we don’t have enough to cover food and petrol. So I’m feeling worried about that.

My fiancés parents think even worse of me then I was aware. They called him this afternoon and were bitching about me wanting to move to Nelson at some point. It’s not just me wanting that, it’s my fiancé as well. And they said they want to talk to him privately about it.

We both feel what they will be wanting to talk to him about is our relationship and they will be trying to talk him into leaving me and staying in Wellington and pretty much them bad mouthing me.

I feel this shows that they clearly don’t respect him and certainly don’t respect our relationship.

My fiancé was telling me that his mother bad mouths me a lot and says very vindictive and nasty things about me. But he doesn’t repeat those things to me, as he knows how much it would hurt and upset me.

Fact is, I have felt like nearly all my partner’s parents have disliked me. So it really does hurt hearing all this.

The CYFS(child, youth and family) social worker did one of those unannounced visits that CYFS do, earlier this week.

I told her(the social worker) of my intentions regarding my children and how I want to have time unsupervised with my youngest 2 kids and that I want my oldest girl back full time. I think she was shocked to hear that. And she made it clear she doesn’t support my desire to be with the kids unsupervised. But I told her that is my goal and that is what I will be working towards. Also, I will get professionals behind me, to support me and advocate for this. As I know how much weight professionals carry and that CYFS pay a lot of attention to their opinions and recommendations.

So that’s where things are at presently. I will do all I can to remain strong.