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The Mental Health Thread

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  • JimB
    started a topic The Mental Health Thread

    The Mental Health Thread

    A lot of people have a lot of stuff going on in their heads right now, so I thought we need a place where we can have open, supportive discussions about our issues. I would very much appreciate it if we could keep this a safe place free of judgment and bickering, but at the same time, I know most of us tend to see problems as puzzles that need solving and are likely to try to present solutions to the people talking about their problems here. That's fine; all I ask is that no one be a dick about it.

    I'll get the ball rolling.

    My depression history is well-documented on the old forums and in the White Wolf archive. I don't want to go into it again because I'm sure we're all bored with it by now. I will mention a more recent occurrence probably caused by it being winter and my depression is therefore being stronger than usual, to the point where I think no part of my life is safe from it, nothing too good to be corrupted.

    For instance, back in 2012 I met Loxofish for the first time. They invited me up to his place, I accepted, I went. I wrote a big story about it. When I got to their place, Devilfish was waiting for me out on the porch,* and the first thing she did--well, actually, the first thing she did was ask, "Jim?" because I guess the next thing she did would have been embarrassing to do if it had turned out I wasn't Jim but was a Jehovah's Witness or something who showed up with comical timing. The second thing she did was hug me hard. I don't handle being treated with things like love or kindness well at all, but a friend who trusted me and whom I trusted in return had called me and asked me to spend time with her and was hugging me like there was nothing weird or repulsive about it, and it was one of the best things that's ever happened to me.

    One detail I left out of that big ol' story I referenced earlier is that when I hugged Devilfish, I marveled at how small she was. I chose to exclude that detail from the story because it seemed a little creepy and was too open to too many bad interpretations, but I was just amazed at how far around her my arms went when I got to hug her. It's something that's stuck with me this last year and a half, every time I think about how once a brave friend hugged me and made me think maybe things were going to be okay.

    A few days ago, when I was thinking about that moment and how surprised I was at how small she seemed, the voice of depression spoke up in the back of my head and said, You marvel at it because you have been alone for so long you don't know how another human being feels in your arms. Your astonishment is because you have no frame of reference for being embraced.

    So there's the best moment of my life, tied seemingly inextricably to a reminder of how alone I feel most of the time, which opens the door wide open for analysis of why I'm alone; the usual self-pitying bullshit about how I am too low and despicable to have friends. I'm not letting that one get to me--it doesn't get to win, it doesn't get to get to me, fuck that--but I'm hurt to discover how easily I can pervert the things I rely on for a defense against this stuff.



    *For some reason, I think Loxosceles was inside the house at the time. I don't trust that memory--it doesn't seem like that's how he would have chosen to let our first meeting go down--but according to my insistent memory, he was upstairs in the living room, standing next to the couch furthest from the stairs, where I met him and his dog.

  • TheCountAlucard
    replied
    Originally posted by Sconce View Post
    Because I figure a lot of us are probably in a bad place these days and maybe could do with this thread coming back so they have somewhere to vent...
    I don't think you're wrong.

    Anyone else's virtually-uncontrolled depressive episodes and severe anxiety steadily destroying them every second they reside in an increasingly-hostile country?
    (raises hand)

    Originally posted by Sconce View Post
    ha ha hi
    Ah-ha, ahh, aha, haha, hah, hoo...

    ​You ever feel something in your brain presenting you with an immediate choice, "Laugh or cry, right now. If you don't laugh right now, you're gonna cry," so you immediately force out a little uncomfortable giggle?

    Leave a comment:


  • Sconce
    replied
    Because I figure a lot of us are probably in a bad place these days and maybe could do with this thread coming back so they have somewhere to vent... lemme start:

    Anyone else's virtually-uncontrolled depressive episodes and severe anxiety steadily destroying them every second they reside in an increasingly-hostile country? Because ha ha hi

    Leave a comment:


  • vampire hunter D
    replied
    what does it say about someone when they say they want to help you but just set off a major episode of depression?

    Leave a comment:


  • Thorbes
    replied
    I actually wish you didn't have to. Then again I am binge eating and then puking.

    Leave a comment:


  • AzraelFirestorm
    replied
    I'm going to do something stupid tonight. I can't help it. I need the relief. The pain. The ritual comfort. I'm covered in scars anyway. Just a few more.

    Leave a comment:


  • vampire hunter D
    replied
    I think I feel another episode building again

    Leave a comment:


  • Vysha
    replied
    Originally posted by AzraelFirestorm View Post
    ...I had to quit drinking. I don't disagree with the advice, but I do deal with some substance issues. Thanks, though.
    Honestly, there are so many things I want to say, but the only one that really matters is; You made the right, healthy choice to quit. Always, always, always remember that. You're stronger than a lot of people who have a problem but never admit it, let alone take steps to remedy it.

    Leave a comment:


  • Papa Bear
    replied
    Originally posted by AzraelFirestorm View Post

    ...I had to quit drinking. I don't disagree with the advice, but I do deal with some substance issues. Thanks, though.
    This was the response I was actually hoping for. Good work, little brother.

    So, serious answer, deep breaths and repeating to yourself that whatever happens in there goes no further than that room. Remind yourself that it is a safe space and that everything you say not only is kept confidential, but can also help the therapist help you. Seemingly insignificant details can be VERY telling to the therapist.

    And above all, no matter what happens, we love ya anyway.

    Leave a comment:


  • AzraelFirestorm
    replied
    Originally posted by Vysha View Post
    I know the comment was kind of tongue-in-cheek, but...

    Yeah, actually that could help. So long as you don't have a substance abuse issue, stopping for a quick drink might not be a bad idea. In the early days of meeting my old therapist (AKA the good one), I'd often stop off at a bar for a quick beer on the way. It helped "loosen my lips" before the meeting and often made the inevitable unpacking of my issues a little easier.
    ...I had to quit drinking. I don't disagree with the advice, but I do deal with some substance issues. Thanks, though.

    Leave a comment:


  • Vysha
    replied
    Originally posted by Papa Bear View Post
    Have a drink beforehand.
    I know the comment was kind of tongue-in-cheek, but...

    Yeah, actually that could help. So long as you don't have a substance abuse issue, stopping for a quick drink might not be a bad idea. In the early days of meeting my old therapist (AKA the good one), I'd often stop off at a bar for a quick beer on the way. It helped "loosen my lips" before the meeting and often made the inevitable unpacking of my issues a little easier.

    Leave a comment:


  • Papa Bear
    replied
    Originally posted by AzraelFirestorm View Post
    Seeing my therapist tomorrow. I haven't checked in with the witch doctor since last month, and that was the only time I've seen her. I'm a little nervous, and kinda confused about how to drop my innate shield of deflecting conversation away from my issues. Anyone have advice on how I might be able to just drop my guard, push through or "trick myself" into maybe being more forthcoming about my feelings?
    Have a drink beforehand.

    Leave a comment:


  • Vysha
    replied
    Originally posted by AzraelFirestorm View Post
    Anyone have advice on how I might be able to just drop my guard, push through or "trick myself" into maybe being more forthcoming about my feelings?
    It took me months building up trust with my old therapist to get to the point where I could start opening up. Literal months. Unfortunately she ended up moving and I got (yet another) new therapist, and I really didn't want to go through another half a year of getting to the point where I could open up. What I did, and it may or may not work for you, is I told my new therapist in the third meeting "I need to talk. Please don't speak, let me get this all out. I need to pretend I'm not talking to you and I'm just talking to myself". And that's what I did. I shut my eyes, told myself I was alone in the room (for about ten to fifteen minutes) and started talking like I would if I were talking to myself.

    Leave a comment:


  • Tessie
    replied
    You could try writing down what you want to discuss on a note and hand it over at the start of the session. If you do you could preface it with "I tend to deflect when it comes to my issues so I write some of them down here." or something similar.

    Leave a comment:


  • AzraelFirestorm
    replied
    Seeing my therapist tomorrow. I haven't checked in with the witch doctor since last month, and that was the only time I've seen her. I'm a little nervous, and kinda confused about how to drop my innate shield of deflecting conversation away from my issues. Anyone have advice on how I might be able to just drop my guard, push through or "trick myself" into maybe being more forthcoming about my feelings?

    Leave a comment:

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