Thanks for your replies. It is impossible to say how much they mean to me.
These days it is very hard for me to take the time to write about what is happening to me. I can sit for hours watching television or playing a computer game just to keep my mind occupied. I was taking an anti-depressant a few months ago and it did seem to help with that a little. But then I ran out and never made it to the pharmacy to get a refill. Now I feel guilty. I have not told my therapist about this because I do not want to be scolded, but that is starting to become a barrier. I say to myself, “I should just go get a refill and start taking them again,” but I never do.
I know that I have some depression in the clinical sense… It is too hard to get the motivation to do new things. All the normal coping things are plenty easy, and I suppose it is fortunate, in a way, that work is one of those. I have had financial problems in the past, and I know they can drag me down fast. But work, television, and the computer are just things that seem to numb my mind. My therapist calls it “crashing.” I thing I understand what she means because when I spend a day doing these things I have such a hard time falling asleep. I cannot seem to quiet down inside and so I toss and turn until the wee hours and then I am exhausted the next day. There are other things that are relaxing that do not seem to be so much like crashing. The biggest is reading. I have some of the books recommended here along with some others, and when I spend time reading those I start to feel more in touch with myself.
Coming to this list and writing is also good for me, even though it is hard to do. It is sad that there are people out there that can identify with me, but it is also reassuring. It has been said a thousand times here and it is so true… the sorts of things that we have to deal with make us feel so isolated and alone. Even marriage was not enough to break my isolation. I know that I am coming up on that part of recovery where I have to focus more on my life now and less on the past. That is not to say that I am done with the past, just that it is time to start giving energy to today. That to is hard for me. It is exhausting spending time with other people.
This week a very close friend of mine had a small stroke and was hospitalized. He is fine now and there is no permanent damage. But the thing that really gets to me is my own feelings during this. In fact, I had no feelings at all. In a sort of intellectual sense I did not want anything bad to happen to him. But I did not feel any fear or concern or anxiety or hope even though I knew those feelings were appropriate. It was awful to feel nothing… I wondered how I could even call him a friend, this being my emotional response to his crisis. This is not a new thing for me either, and it is not limited to the sad things in life. When my wife did great things in law school she would be so happy, but I could not seem to be happy with her. It is as if sharing an emotion with someone else it the most dangerous thing in the world.
My childhood abuse lasted a long time… from when I was fifteen until twenty-one or so. In some ways it seems like it happened yesterday and in others like it happened ten lifetimes ago. I have largely suppressed the traumatic elements, but then these situations like my friend in the hospital drag some of them up to the conscious. I can actually remember the experience of losing trust in the abuser (we were close friends prior to abuse). For years I let him abuse me while I hoped he would stop and be my friend again, but that never happened.
This doesn’t seem like any way to end a post, but I feel like I should probably stop.
"Don't waste your time on jealousy. Sometimes you're ahead, sometimes you're behind. The race is long and, in the end, it's only with yourself." -Mary Schmich