My Answer to New Year

My resolution for 2014. Set none and then you can’t fail or be disappointed. There’s only one thing to do when you feel this shit and can’t trust yourself. A sleeping pill and a lorazepam and pass out til morning. Would like to skip the whole New Year’s Day thing too but not an option. 

HOME TREATMENT TEAM!!!! MY ADVICE TO YOU.

I’ve not posted for a while as I just haven’t been well enough to get my head together to write anything. I’ve been under the care of the HTT again. Twice they tried to find me a bed and twice the only choice was not local but at least 50 miles if not 100 mile round trip from home. Thankfully I wasn’t sectioned and refused their offer, though I think I came quite close to not having that option. Bear with this post it is quite long.   

My history with the HTT is not good. I don’t get on with most of them especially when I am not very well, which kind of is a problem seeing as that’s when you have most contact with them. I’ve tried everything that I can think of to find a way of working with them. We have had a sit down meeting to discuss care when I have been better. A care plan was drawn up to assist both sides in the event of me having a relapse and coming under their care. They have surpassed themselves this time. I am in crisis at the moment and after giving more than they should have support, my care coord and psychiatrist felt they had no choice but to swap my care over to HTT. They are supposed to be the gate keepers to that extra support etc that I really need at the moment. However this has been beset with issues. The consultant and team I am under have changed. The area that HTT covers has been widened and unfortunately that meant my area went under a different team. It’s taken a few years where my old team knew how to make a difference and give the support that I need when unwell. I admit I can be a right pain in the arse. I’m probably not the easiest of people to manage. But that is their job to know how to manage that. I’m not well, I’m not myself, my brain has gone wonky, I need help!

The way things have been managed so far though has reached a new level of error and incompetence. These aren’t my words, I have been very frustrated with the inaccuracies and sometimes nasty way that I have been dealt with. A couple of their own staff have told me to complain which is saying something. Mostly though it has been family and friends who have become aware of the lack of following of their own policies and procedures. I’m not going to complain though, I’m paranoid enough as things are. I’ve been convinced that the HTT are trying to kill me, complaining about them is not going to make that better; plus I’ve been there before and there reply to everything is ‘we have a duty of care and that’s why we did x to fulfil that duty’. It does seem to be a get out of trouble clause for them to anyone who questions their practises.

This time though things are different. My sister has had to become very involved in my care and she learnt a lot from my crisis earlier on in the year. She is not happy and she is not prepared to let them use that escape route. She doesn’t faff around with simple complaint letters that basically get filed and collect dust. HTT have an official complaint to answer to from her solicitors and she is like a dog with a bone when she gets pissed off. I’m very grateful to her, the enormous stress and pressure that she has been put under because of my relapse is huge and this has been exacerbated by the people who should be helping, not helping. I can’t really list what exactly has happened but I think HTT escaped only having to answer to the solicitor rather than the coroner by the skin of their teeth. Even after being warned by other MH professionals and family they refused to act on the information or intervene for over 5 hours not following their own policies and procedures until they were asked directly what they should be doing with the information. This is just one example of many and I’m worried if I go into too much detail of everything then someone could identify who I am. They may well just from what I have written. I’m paranoid that someone who knows me professionally or personally may find my blog.

All of the above has not stopped me trying to work out how I can work better with them. I’ve asked for advice from others how to do this. I don’t want to go from pussy cat to pitball in 1 second flat whenever they come to visit me. I’ve been told that I can come across as unapproachable, that I have a bubble around me that I don’t allow people through. Well all things considered I understand why I use these as a protective factor. Anyhow I took the advice from someone who has worked with the HTT for many years. It hasn’t worked. It bothers me, it has bothered me a lot. I’m not like the person I think they see me as, it adds to my anxiety.

Today though I think I have worked out why it happens. Why can I work so well with some people involved in my care yet butt heads continuously with so many others. I admit I become very black and white about right and wrong when I am unwell. I do criticise HTT and they do become the focus of my irritability and agitation when I’m under their ‘care’. But also they do leave themselves open to this happening. I’m ill, not stupid so don’t treat me like I am or like I’m a child, even though you may think I am acting like one sometimes. It is just the frustration around not being well, it is part of the symptoms and my reaction to my illness. I do not enjoy feeling this desperate, I do want someone to wave a magical wand and make it all go away. I am aware that that doesn’t happen but it doesn’t make me not want it to. This leads me to what I think happens. The people I can work with, be more open with and allow inside my bubble are the people that see me as a person. They know my diagnosis, they know my symptoms but mostly they recognise that I am more than those two factors. They see the bigger picture, they empathise, they listen and they understand that I am a person who does have a personality and a life beyond mental illness even if it is greatly effected by that mental illness. They are people that can give you some hope when everything seems hopeless. They are the people who want to treat and help the whole person. The flip side to this and from my experience a great many, do not see past the list of symptoms that they need to control, to suppress. They do not see past the diagnosis and make their own judgements about you from what some else has written or within a few minutes of meeting you. They don’t really care about anything else about you. They are very busy, they have a big workload, they have people to manage who are more ill than you in their book. They have lost their compassion and empathy, for some I think it was never there, for others it may well have been beaten out of them by the system, the workload and the paperwork. Whatever it is it is not my problem. If you walk through my door get out a notebook and start asking me questions from your list so you can tick off the boxes I will know, I won’t be truthful and you are likely to get a tongue lashing or silence. If I tell you I can’t cope with the side effects I am getting don’t brush them off and tell me you will log it onto RIO and then leave 5 mins after you arrive. RIO is not a bloody doctor its a computer, it cannot help me with my side effects, I know from experience that doctors and others do not always scroll through and certainly don’t do it every day. I am likely to feel that you aren’t helping me and stop taking them and not tell you that is what I have done. Don’t talk at me and not listen to what I have to say. Even if you do think it’s a load of rubbish. Stop, pause and respond even if I have just told you I have won the lottery and am taking everyone on holiday. The list could go on and on but the point I am making is RECOGNISE ME AS A WHOLE PERSON. I AM JUST LIKE YOU. MY MENTAL ILLNESS AND SYMPTOMS IS NOT ALL THAT I AM. If that is all you can see or want to see then you need to find a different career, a different path. It will make you happier and probably the clients that you come into contact happier too.      

Limbo and Not the Dancing Kind

I’m in limbo land, I’m still waiting to hear the results from my interview. My anxiety has calmed down a bit for now but it doesn’t take much to kick it off, I really wasn’t in a good place this time last week. I caught up with a good friend who knows about everything and so we had a really good chat about everything and anything. It has definitely helped me put things a bit more in perspective. I had definitely allowed my ideas and thoughts to run wild on several things. We also chatted about a lot of other stuff as well, there is a world outside of the very small one I live in sometimes and it’s good to be reminded of it. The trouble with isolating yourself is that it allows you to shut out just about everything, it allows me to venture to the darkest places, I become consumed by the bleakness of everything.

I’m still feeling very vulnerable, I’m still on high alert but I’m just able to cope a bit better this week. My care coordinator is seeing me 3 times a week and available for calls and txts, it’s a lot of support and I feel guilty about the amount of time she is spending on me. I enjoy her company, we have quite a lot in common but I feel at some point I will fail in what her expectations of me are. I still feel an inevitability of how things will end with me, I don’t want that to be the way it goes but unless some way to stop the deep depressions that take over can be found I fear that is my future.

What is the Point!!!!

What is the point? I am so torn, I am so tired of struggling. I don’t know who I am. Why am I still here taking up space. I can’t cope with a downward spiral again. I am numb but mostly I hate myself for being this way. I should know how to deal with these feelings by now but nothing is working. I am running on empty!!!!! 

Anonymous Grasses

It’s a terrible feeling to know that people think you are one of the benefit scrounging scum so called by the popular press. The whole process does not make you feel innocent until proven guilty, it is definitely weighed in the you are guilty now prove your not. The fact that some evil, malicious, jealous, backstabbing (I could continue with the descriptive words) bitch has made an anonymous phone call and will never have to answer to that, is wrong. Karma and what goes around comes around are very well but they take too long. As much as I have sat and thought about all the horrible things I would like to do in pay back, that’s not me and I won’t do any of them. It’s not healthy for me I need to move forward or I am going to give this person even more satisfaction in seeing me fall apart. I am so close, HTT have been suggested but we all know where that normally ends up and I am desperately trying to pull myself together. Lorazepam is my companion, I can’t cope with anything without it. My Care Coordinator has become the HTTeam for me. I feel such a burden and so pathetic. Guess this could be called a ‘trigger’.

I’ve had my interview under caution. It was horrendous I felt like I was going to throw up or pass out the whole time. I’m sure they all thought I was going to run from the room screaming. I got through it, just, but only because I had tremendous support from my care coordinator and the brilliant mental out reach worker from the CAB. It’s amazing how the use of one word instead of another can be interpreted wrongly. Now I have to wait for another brown envelope to drop through my door could be next week could be next month. Is it any wonder people don’t open their post. I know I’m not going to.

I read an article about the fact that the haves don’t have to worry whether the have nots are getting too big for their boots as the have not’s will cut each other down to make sure it doesn’t happen. It really is true that the poor keep the poor poor. It’s not like the person who has done this is in a better position than me, it’s just that she is so jealous of other peoples lives as she see’s them that she cannot actually see the reality which is that everyone is just trying to live their lives the best way they can. According to her she is always the victim but then looking at life from her alcohol haze is probably a factor. To have reported three of her neighbours for benefit fraud and to social services is not going to improve her situation and probably will fulfil her proficy of being a victim. I could go on and on but it remains that I can’t change what has happened, venting does help, it stops the merry go round in my head for a short while. I know I haven’t done anything wrong and out of all the checks they did they only found one document with a grammar error. It would have been helpful if they had found all of their paperwork available about my case, thankfully the CAB lady had copies she could supply them with, which are now in the file they have against me.

The thing is I am unable to work because of all this, I have become a bigger burden to them as I have to claim more benefit to cover the money I am not earning because I am not well enough to work. Ironic really. Mr Cameron really is an arse. How much money are they losing because of investigations from anonymous tip offs and even the ones they might have a case against how much does it actually turn out they are over claiming for. Even when this is done with and I am found to have not done anything wrong, ( I believe I will be)  it could all kick off again if they were to receive another anonymous tip off. I’m just waiting for social services to arrive with another anonymous tip off. I will just have to direct them to the right door, it isn’t mine.

I am swimming through mud at the moment but I am desperately trying to stop myself from sinking into it.

Backstabbing Jealous Bitch!!!!!!

Sometimes it feels the world is against you. It doesn’t matter what you do you constantly land flat on your arse.
After all the anxiety of a DLA decision that took a near tribunal, paper work that would kill off a rain forest, letters from a mass of people and loads ands loads of anxiety and probably added to my visit to Butlins on the NHS I was awarded the benefit.
The Benefits saga seemed to have sorted itself just. It was a mess due to the amount of time I didn’t receive the DLA. I have huge problems dealing with all these departments and thought that for the time being it was done with.
Yesterday a brown envelope came through my letterbox. I am now being investigated for fraud of benefits. They haven’t told me exactly what they think I have done and won’t until I am cautioned. It makes no sense to me though, since I got the letter not much has made sense through my lorazepam haze.
I’ve been grassed on. That’s a statement, as to be grassed on you have to be doing something wrong. I haven’t, unless you count taking more lorazepan than you should an offence. I know who has done it. Jealously and envy are not a becoming personality trait especially when you know that there is no cure for this certain person.
I know I have nothing to feel guilty for but the whole process scares the wits out of me, I haven’t stopped throwing up, I can’t shut down with out taking drugs. I am having chest pains and seriously having suicidal thoughts. My moods have been a little out of control for a while but I feel I’ve been picked up by a tornado.
I’ve been feeling paranoid for months ever since coming out of hospital. I’ve spoken to my CC about it. I even said to her that the GRASS would see me as a vulnerable person and that I couldn’t ignore her as she would do something horrible. There’s a saying, Keep your friends close but your enemies closer, unfortunately it’s not worked. I think the time has come to kick said GRASS to touch.
I think I’m starting to lose the plot, I don’t even know if I will make it to the interview, I may be otherwise disposed, I can’t cope.

DOES PHYSICAL ILL HEALTH TRIGGER MOOD EPISODES

I’ve found a trigger that sends me into a mixed episode. I’ve had a suspicion for a while but now I am pretty sure that physical ill health sometimes precedes a shift in my mood. I have a chest infection, bronchitis. I noticed the symptoms and have seen my doctor and been prescribed antibiotics which I am taking. Already I can feel a change. I am not tired, I have energy, my to do list is growing longer by the hour, my concentration is crap and I am flitting from one thing to another. I should be lying flat on my back in bed, I have a fever but every time I think about taking something for it I get distracted. Why is this a problem most people would love not to feel ill when they are ill, the trouble is that I do feel ill, I am aware of my chest hurting the shortness of breath, the fever and the hacking cough it’s just I don’t have time to give any of it recognition. I know these are all signs of my mood going high, unfortunately though my thoughts are turning negative. My lists are including tidying up issues, sorting through my paper work, not leaving my rubbish for other people. I’m on top of it, I’m aware of these thoughts and I’m using coping methods to deal with them they are not strong. But I am entering a danger zone, one that with hindsight has led to hospital. I suffer from chest infections and having at least 1 per year is normal for me. The last two times I have been in hospital were preceded by chest infections (I rarely suffer from any other ill health). One of these hospitalisations came while I was still on antibiotics, I had a severe reaction to the penicillin prescribed and came out in hives and swelling all over my face and body. The staffs reaction to this allergic reaction was that it must be something I had used, I was given steroids to counteract the reaction but when I stopped taking them the hives and swelling reappeared, I was pretty much accused of deliberately using something to bring on the reaction. Subsequently a doctor realised the connection and I am not allowed to take penicillin again. I’m pretty sure too that I had just finished a course of antibiotics for another chest infection just before my last incarceration earlier this year. The question is, is this all coincidence or is there a connection. Do antibiotics flip a switch in my head like anti depressants or is it that when my bodies immune system kicks in the switch flips or is it none of these. I don’t know and I’ve not been able to find any information on whether this could be the case either. Whatever happens I’m aware of it now and I am making myself take things easy, I am just hoping that it all stays manageable.