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Thursday, November 4, 2010

We all live in a yellow submarine...

Each time something healing happens inside me, I go through a period of intense insecurity. I question everything stable in my life, and expect losses, betrayals, and abuses which never occur. It's a pattern I would like to circumvent--I just don't know how. When the episode subsides, often after many days, I'm left feeling embarrassed, exhausted, and guilty. I understand that my recent ideas and behaviors were unnecessary, and often inflammatory. I do not understand why, after going through this with me time after time, people are still in my life.

The problem is, the closer you are to me, the more likely it is that I'll try to involve you in my delusional behavior. I don't even realize I'm doing so until all the feelings have subsided and I remember what I said, and the emotions accompanying our conversations. I don't know how to apologize. I don't know how to make amends. I don't know how to proceed from that point.

I'm not finished with this particular bout of nastiness, but it's on its way out. This time I was convinced that all my friendships were too close, too dependent (on my part), and unhealthy. It's not the first time I've felt this during a cycle of PTSD symptoms. However, it might be the first time I felt more than just defeat and sadness that I was so bad at relationships. I found myself determined to change things, which left me cranky and more stressed than I've felt for awhile--thus, the panic attacks which didn't seem to wish to go away.

I remember talking with Jason at the onset of the feelings. I think I had some half-witted plan to idea exactly what... But we were on the phone. Somehow, when I can hear the person's voice, I'm able to recognize which feelings are real and which are PTSD symptomatic. I'm able to look at things rationally. Jason and I have been known to talk for hours, and for most of the night. When I was staying with his family once, he and I talked until after 3:00 a.m., ignoring the fact that we had scheduled a 7:00 run for the next morning. Needless to say, we didn't run, as scheduled.

Jason and I enjoy talking with each other. We have many things we share and about which we speculate. But this does not indicate an unhealthy friendship, and for whatever reason, my stupid emotional state was signaling that I needed to separate myself, back off, do whatever was needful to healthify (yup, making up words again--it's what I do) the relationship. So--fortunately, we chose to talk on the phone, rather than chat or email, and I was able to nullify the stupid feelings and focus on what was really happening: Two friends talking about life events, laughing at inside jokes, and discussing anything that was on our minds. This is not unhealthy. This is authentic caring and friendship. I just need to convince my subconscious of that. Stupid subconsciousness!

Poor AtP bore the brunt of my panic attacks. More than once I caught him online and begged him to talk me through them. Stupid panic attacks! I hate having to bother people when they hit, but there are times when I'm alone, if I don't take them out, they become overwhelming to the point of causing me to vomit, and it's not unheard of for me to pass out. Yup--I'm amazingly lame. Still haven't figured out how to circumvent the sick/passing out phase, but if I can catch the attack while it's still brewing, and distract myself by talking to someone, I find the panic subsides a bit and I can manage life for awhile. Darrin usually is the person I talk to, but he was unavailable--so--AtP was not, so I asked him for help. And now I feel like I used him somehow, that I should have been able to work through things without bothering him. Add to that confusion, because if our positions were reversed, I would have been happy to talk him through something similar, grateful he trusted me enough to let me help.

Hm...I think I hit Jason up for help, as well. I must have had way too many panic attacks in the past week.

At some point I decided that my friendship with Tolkien Boy ought be be one in which we stop talking online and just communicate with occasional post cards. I had a long talk with him, during which I said pointless things intended to help him understand why this would be a good thing. I think I became so muddled that I was never able to present the post card idea.. Probably a good thing. I think he also was grading papers, or reading, or writing, or chatting with someone else, or dancing...something...whatever it was, I don't think he was paying much attention to my drivel, which is also a good thing. However, he must have gotten a tiny idea of what I was trying to say because before he said good night, he said, "I'm happy our friendship is the way it is." Not helpful to my cause. Not in the least.

If you are female and my friend, you escaped any friendship modifying efforts this time. My confused mind had decided I need more time with women, less time with men, therefore there was no need to establish a postcard-sending relationship.

Meanwhile, as I was frantically trying to make my already healthy relationships become healthy, my emotions fluctuated between anger, sadness, and frustration, all of which were leveled at those friends who were being supportive and kind. Yup--I repay kindness... tonight, as the effects of this last bout of PTSD are subsiding, I'm sort of wondering what comes next. Possible scenarios:
1. Those who conversed with me when I was batty will limit future exposure to my insanity, thus supplying the impression that our relationship is somehow normal and working toward the moment when we have perfected postcard communication.

2. Those who conversed with me when I was batty will understand that this particular phase is temporary, driven by past events, and really has nothing to do with them or my feelings for them. They might even love me a little bit more because I need them to and I'm feeling a little vulnerable and a lot embarrassed.

3. Those who conversed with me when I was batty were a little stressed and sort of preoccupied with their own problems so they didn't even notice I was talking crazy and there is no need to speak of this ever again. Until the next time it happens. Which I hope is never.

And now I am going to bed because it's after midnight and no one ever deals well with emotions when lack of sleep is involved. But, yeah, I need some advice on how to deal with this "thing".

Okay, going to sleep now.


  1. You said it helps to talk to someone when you get like that so that seems to be good advice you're giving yourself: When in this place, find someone to talk to. If you can recognise things better in yourself when you're talking on the phone instead of in person, then talk on the phone!

    I sure understand the fear of being too dependent on others or being afraid of "using" them or asking for help. I'm bad at that. Reading what you wrote made me realise that maybe I need to try to break out of that.

  2. It's a process, I suppose, like everything else. For me, I have to get past the PTSD symptoms which tell me I have no right to bother anyone and if someone is sympathetic enough to take time for me, it's not out of love, but because they're just nice people and can't wait to get away from me.

    Destructive thinking is the symptom I'm most susceptible to--and the one I plan to deal with next.