Monday, 28 February 2011

Help....(I need somebody)

People ask for help. Some want it but others are not prepared to listen. I've had this in my personal life and my professional life. There was a post on SF I commented on recently which had provoked quite a lot of controversial comments. One in particular said about how this person had asked for help but was not listening to any advice that was being given to them.

"Probably very few people on here will actually agree with me, but I'm going to say it.. If things are that bad that you feel this way, and you wont seek help then there's not a lot anyone on here can actually do for you.
This comment has made me think quite a lot recently. Along with this girls blog. They are both exactly right in what they say. I feel the same way. Yet why when it comes to me can I not practice what I preach? Why do I have these strong feelings of not being able to cope? Why am I seeing suicide as the easy way. I know I have to fight this. I don't know how much fight I have left in me. I am so close to breaking point. But I have been here before. It was 2008. I was taking OD's on a weekly basis. Planning them. Going out in my lunch break and getting co-codamal from pharmacies in the hope that if I took enough the codeine in them would send my body in to shutting down (CNS depression). I knew that the paracetamol was a long drawn out process of dying. Sometimes I would take OD's and go to bed but then I would wake up the next day. A few days later with no pain I would take a load more. I was cutting, burning, scratching and banging. I was looking up medications online and different plants that were poisonous. Sometimes I would wake up in hospital as I would leave my flat in a weird state and then pass out. I used to drink with them so I wasn't thinking straight. Sometimes I would remember leaving the flat and think I would go and get run over, die of hypothermia, or that I was too hot and needed the air as the air in the flat was stifling.  

Even now I am doing the same thing. I have not taken many OD's. I have taken a couple to test the water as such. But I look up drugs. I look up combinations of things or what certain things would do if I took too much. I can't do anything that would give me a bad stomach so a lot of OD's are out for me. But I think now find the right combination and bam!

I look in to ways it would look like an accident. If I think I can make it look like an accident then I will take that opportunity. Like when I was in hospital and I tried to kill myself by pulling the end off the cannula and letting it bleed out. I have actually said this Dr T. I was talking to the nurses on the 136 Suite about it. I said I felt suicidal, I was always looking for methods. I even made a joke saying I don't understand why I was on a 136 after looking like I was going to jump off a bridge, I am scared of heights and I said I wouldn't go for something so obvious as that. And painful. I said I am a wuss. I need accident, painless, go to sleep kind of blood loss through cannula. Although now I have said that I think if I was to be in hospital for something and that happened they would know it was suicide as I told them about it. I don't think do I?!

So why wont I listen to my own advice. Why am I doing the things that other people do and they annoy the hell out of me and it makes me want to punch them. For instance I am working with this woman at the moment who is about to be kicked out her flat. She has lived there quite a while and she has come to us saying she needs help as she doesn't know what she can do. Last week she was given a final warning. Today I have a phone call from the police and the council saying there have been more complaints to police, police incidents and complaints to the council over the weekend. Now why, when you have already been given a final warning would you have friends over drinking with you late at night. Why would you compromise your neighbours security by propping open the security door? This was 2 days after her final warning!!!!!

She rang me in tears, she rang me and I ended up taking her to the ED because her mental state was affected that much by the final warning that I was concerned. I spent nearly 9 hours with her. She annoyed the hell out of me; if you are with me you must learn to chew with your mouth closed and don't chomp!!!!!! I was seriously annoyed with her. I was mega anxious anyway as of being in the ED and being stared at by the staff who knew me as crazy drunk, self harmer, suicidal, messed up girl. Refer to previous post on that one! She asked me for help. Now if she is not going to listen to my advice what do I do. Do I say "sorry, you have not listened to us, you have not engaged or made any effort, see you at the shelter when you are homeless". Or, do I continue to support and have my advice fall on deaf ears. Why should I put so much time and effort in to her when I have other cases that have child protection issues that I need to find housing for (even the police officer I spent 45 minutes on the phone to today laughed at me and said rather you than me). One I am working on really wants help, she rings me and asks advice and she listens. OK, I have sort of a God complex about this one as she seems to worship the ground I walk on but she is listening. She is taking advice. She wants to help her self.

Yet here I am saying to people you have to help yourself and what the hell am I doing. I research suicide most of each evening. I don't reach out for help when I probably most need it as I am too worried about peoples perceptions of me...i.e the diagnosis of PD will be easier if I am "attention seeking". I try and deal with it on my own, or I self harm. Or I wait until I have had a drink and then think about throwing myself off bridges. I know I wont be calling crisis team. I don't even really know why I am still under them as there is no way I will call them...I have also addressed that in previous posts. Yet I am told over and over and over I must seek out help. I don't. The help is being offered to me, do I listen, NO! So I am just as bad aren't I?

So that makes it pretty much that there is not an awful lot that anyone can actually do for me. And you know what, you know how that makes me feel. Even more suicidal. Yup! Stupid isn't it. I then see that I am beyond help, that nothing can be done and that this fight is going to be lost soon. I think I have said before that the life of an alcoholic bum seems appealing at times. I don't like being bothered by things. I am over bothered by everything. Doesn't it seem appealing to be only bothered about sitting around all day pissed. Or being sectioned. I can give up then. I don't have to fight anymore. I can self harm as much as I want. I can stop caring about what people think and just do what makes me happy. Not have to impress people, not have to abide by the strict rules and regualtions of normality. I can see me many miles away inactive (sorry for the Evita quote there - dam now I have to put it on). I can see a life of not having to fight, of taking the easy way. The longer that this "conflict" goes on the more it seems attractive. The more giving up seems attractive. I am not sure how much of me wants to go on like this.

I have constant conflicts going around in my head. I am annoyed with myself as if I were my own patient I would be annoyed with me. I am the patient I hate the most. The ones who say they want help but then are not willing to take the advice.

 I like to take a very medical approach to everything and think everything should be treated with pills and medication. I am not one for this whole idea of psychology...I know I did a degree in it, I am bloody doing social work which is not scientific. But I like science. I like right and wrong answers. I don't like so and so argues this while so and so argues that. There is no right answer there. I want answers. I don't want people trying different approaches with me. I want medicating. I want it to be solved with medication. Not talking. If it can be medicated then it's medical which there is less of a stigma.

I think I know deep down that I need to talk about things. I am not one for emotions. I don't like emotions. Not negative ones anyway. I try not to show negative ones. One of my colleagues from my placement seems very tuned in to what I am feeling. I hate it. I have only been there 3 weeks and she picks up on everything. She is so nice and so to the point. But it scares me. I don't give my emotions away but she will say things like "go for your nicotine fix mental, I can tell that was a tough phone call"! I will have been laughing and joking on the phone but inside I am thinking Shhhhhhiiiiiiiiittttttt, WTF am I going to do with this inbred woman whose mum is also her aunty. Ok exageration there but I have had pretty similar stuff.

So how do I stop myself being my own worst client/patient/service user. I know people say you are your own worst enemy/critic. But seriously what can I do?

Sunday, 27 February 2011


My two worlds collided on Thursday and it was awful. I had to take a client to the ED and it was less than a week since I had been there with a possey of police for company. The triage nurse (who is rather cute) and I are on first name terms I have seen him that often. He was walking over to my client and noticed me and just looked really puzzled. I got anything else in before he could and said I was the support worker. He quietly spoke to me while my client was ahead while we were walking to the room for her to be assessed. He checked out I was ok, and asked how I'd been. I mentioned last Saturday and he said that he hoped things would look up for me soon. Anyway, was with her and I was getting every one staring at me. I was anxious enough as it was. Nasty nurse was on the night shift. I could hear her going on and on about general crap. She kept looking at me. I am surprised she didn't take the opportunity to come and have a go at me like she did last time considering I was stone cold sober and she is a nasty cow with no compassion or understanding. One of the things she said to me last week was "I thought you were going to get your life sorted out and stop being so stupid". I mean come on. She does not know the first thing about me. She doesn't know why I cut, self harm, attempt. What does she know. All she sees is another person who needs to be stitched.

My client had to be seen by Psych Medicine. I was dreading that. I was worried it would be Nurseman Mike or someone else that I knew. So I was freaking about that. The thing is I didn't have to be there. It was beyond my role. But I couldn't just leave my client there not knowing if she would be able to get home. She was a vulnerable lady with psychiatric problems, I couldn't leave thinking that they may make her get the bus in to town and out again at 11pm on a Thursday night. I had brought her down to the ED I couldn't just leave her. So, me having morals etc put me in a position where my two worlds collided.

I don't know if I am ready to be doing this. I am having near panic attacks when I see someone I know or when I have been somewhere I have been before. I am dealing with it though. Technically, I could have just dropped her off at the ED, said something to Triage nurse and left. She would have no longer have been my responsibility. I wouldn't have had to put myself through nearly 6 hours of hell. But I felt I had a responsibility towards her and although I could have done that, and according to the organisation I am in should have done that. I couldn't. So even though I am in a bit of a mess at the moment it goes to show that I am not neglecting my role and I am managing ok.

I am in a bit of a state at the moment. I am battling the urges. I am fighting and fighting to keep this other person away. I am actually beginning to think I am actually 2/3 different people. That rather than just being something I have done it's deeper than that. My thoughts are scaring me. I know I should be calling crisis team but I would rather  be dealing with it on my own. I don't want more people involved. More people asking what's going on.

I have an appointment with Sam on Wednesday at least so I can go through everything with her then. I wasn't going to text her or bother her while she was on annual leave. I will manage without.

At least I am back at placement tomorrow so I have that to concentrate on. Once I have a few more stories I will write a bit more about what I am doing. It's really interesting and I really like it.


Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Do I Want Help?

Dr T said something the other day that has really made me think things over. He said I come to him saying I want help yet when I need it the most it's when I don't approach anyone. So what is it?

Is it that I think I can deal with it on my own?

A lot of the time yeah. I come on here, I post on SF, I do what I can to deal with it on my own.

Is it that at those times I don't want help?

Yeah, this is true also. If I have made a decision to SH, OD, or attempt I don't tell anyone. I keep it to myself. Why? Well fear of being stopped. I am stubborn! If I have made my mind up about something then it is set on it. How is telling Crisis or what ever going to make any difference if I have already made up my mind. So when I have already made up my mind I suppose I don't actually want the help.

Is it because I am worried about how I am viewed?

Working in Psychiatry I have worked with a lot of people who self harm. What I never understood about these people was if they really wanted to self harm that badly why did they tell me. I wasn't going to let them, I would ensure that they weren't able to by removing items which they could harm with. Or by suggesting to the nurse in charge that they go in to strong bedding. I found a lot of the time people who told me this were just attention seeking and wanted me to feed in to it. I had it quite a lot working on the bank/agency for NHSP where patients would approach me as they thought I was new and inexperienced and tell me. OK, fair enough there are people out there who have the urges to self harm and they don't want to and they are worried so they tell someone, but the horrible truth is that these people are few and far between. So I worry. I worry if I was to call crisis team and say I am having these thoughts to self harm etc they would not take me seriously and think I was seeking attention. I have enough attention thank you very much and would actually quite liked to be left alone.

Am I scared?

Quite frankly YES! I am terrified. I am frightened. I had a taste of what being sectioned was like. And that was tame. I know what psychiatric wards can be like. They are not nice places. They are noisy. They busy. You are surrounded by mad people. And that's just the staff!!!!! Where I was on the 136 suite was me and one nurse in a room for 8 hours. I had someone there if I needed them. And I did. I was terrified of being left on my own. I was on high observations as standard when you are on 136. But that taste has scared me. I can't fault the staff. I thought both nurses as Different City Hospital were amazing. I said that to them. I said it's been really nice meeting you, you have excellent staff here but I would have rather have never met you and I hope to never meet you again...he then jokingly asked if I wanted a shift for that night as someone had called in sick! The nurse at Local Hospital was nice also. She could see I was upset and she made sure I was ok. She knew I had been staff and she made sure that I could go somewhere else and in my worrying about getting home from there told me not to worry and they would pay for the taxi. The staff at Different City Hospital said I was lucky as they usually make people get the bus!

I am scared that if I really tell them how I am feeling then they will end up putting me in hospital. I am so scared my career would be affected as that is the only thing that is going sort of positively for me at the moment. But, I think I am putting too much emphasis on that. I am putting too much hope in to that one thing. What if I encounter problems and it all comes crashing down. Then what do I have?

I also feel that maybe I should be in hospital. I am not going to tell them that. I keep my thoughts to myself. I don't want to be there. I am scared. I am embarrassed. I keep so much to myself that I am sure if I told them everything about my thoughts, my feelings, the smells, the voices, the extreme paranoia (at times) and everything else they would have me on a section 2 as quick as anything. The thing is I know how to work the system. I know what to say. I know how to avoid it.

I know when I am not in Crisis mode that I need help. I am able to go to the doctors and say I need this this and that. When I am in that mode I can't do anything. I want help now. I don't want help then. I have gone past that. But I would say it's mainly fear.

I am getting better with Sam. I am less paranoid about telling her things now as I know she is there to listen and help me. She is not one of these people who sits there quietly, she gets angry for me, she is not a "ummmmm, ahhhhhhhh, how does that make you feel? That must be really hard for you"? I feel like she is on my side. I feel the others aren't. I feel they are gathering evidence to put me in hospital. Sam is helping me avoid it.

Yeah, so I guess I am scared. Terrified is more like it. So what do I do?

I had an appealing thought today and it was stupid. I thought why not run away, become an alcoholic and just not care anymore. Drink so I don't care. I think I care too much at the moment.
(I don't think I could become an alcoholic though as my hangovers are getting worse in old age and I am quite particular about what I drink....I am rather picky)!


Monday, 21 February 2011


I saw Dr T the Psychiatrist today. I wrote a long post and reply on SF so I thought I would just copy and paste it here. I come back to this and read what I wrote previously. (If you are a reader from SF there is more at the end in this colour that is not on SF).

I saw the Psychiatrist. He challenged on my thoughts etc. I found it really hard. I could see what he was doing though. One of the things he said was "you have come and asked for help. But it seems as though you don't actually want it". He meant that I came to appointments and I was asking to be helped but I am not doing anything to help myself. He said the times when I needed help the most I wasn't seeking it out. I think I can deal with things on my own and file the problem away but really I haven't dealt with it. Like on Friday I was feeling bad, agitated, suicidal etc. I thought I had dealt with it but Saturday went to show I hadn't. He asked me why I wouldn't ring crisis team, I was under their care for a reason and how it looked to him was that I wasn't accepting the help that had been offered.

I explained to him that I thought I could deal with things myself and that I felt pathetic at having to ring them when it is minor things that have got me in to a tizzle. I feel that there are people who are in worse situations who deserve their time and I prefer to try and deal with it on my own. I explained how I found it really hard to speak to people on the phone. Especially people I didn't know. That's why these hot lines don't work for me. If I am talking about something personal I need to see their face to gauge their reactions. I can talk about it on here and my blog as it is anonymous. I said I have a thing of where I get to know someone and then rely on them for support. I said I knew it was unhealthy but I struggle to be open and honest with people I don't know. One of the things that worries me about crisis team is having to explain everything. Having a different person each time and having to tell them everything.

He then went on to say that I couldn't just rely on one or two people. What if they are ill, on annual leave etc. I know what he is saying as I could really do with talking to Sam my counsellor about the weekend but I know she is on annual leave. She said text me if you have any problems but I don't want to disturb her time off. It's not fair on her. I would call Mike at PM but there is nothing they can do as they are assessment only. So that leaves me with no one to call and no one to off load on about what went on at the weekend.

Anyway...plan of action...

Clinical Psychology want to work through the counsellor I already see. The Clinical Psychologist supervises a lot of staff already from that organisation. Dr T said there was a good chance she already knew my case as may have been discussed in supervision...but she wouldn't know me by name. So what they are hoping for is the clinical psychologist to lead Sam in what she does with me. This would work a lot better for me as would mean I didn't have to go to the hospital where I have worked numerous times to go see her and have that risk each time I go and I am limited on when I can see people. I have counselling sessions in the evening after work which works and I only have half a day each week as study leave. So fitting it in around that schedule would be hard and could mean I am waiting weeks if not months for an appointment that would come up when I have that half a day off. He also said it would probably be better for me to work like that as it's obvious I find it hard to trust new people and find it hard to build up that relationship to it means I can continue to work with Sam who I know and don't have the stress of the new person thing. He also said if I was to work with the Clinical Psychologist directly I would have to stop seeing Sam as wouldn't work as approaches may be slightly different.

I am being referred to have a key worker/CPN. I asked him for one quite early on in the appointment and he said that was something he was going to discuss with me as he thought that would be beneficial.

He asked me if I would call crisis team when I am struggling. I find it hard to know when I am struggling and what if any triggers are. He asked me if I thought if they should call me and I said that would be better then I don't have the hurdle of picking up the phone.

He said he could tell I was putting up a lot of barriers and that I wasn't doing myself any favours. I told him about trying to kill myself while I was in hospital. He asked me why. I told him why. He challenged me over that saying I had gone to the hospital for the infection in my leg wanting help. I had gone voluntarily so it was obs something I was concerned about. Yet while I am there I tried to kill myself. He asked why then. I explained that I was struggling. I told him I did even try crisis team but I couldn't get through. I had told the nurse I was also.

He said I didn't try hard enough to get through as all I needed to do was call local hospital switch board and asked to be put through. I thought if I did that it would page them (as the person I did speak to at psychiatric hospital switch board said I needed to call local hospital switch board and they would page them) and I didn't want them rushing down thinking I was going to top myself I just wanted to talk to someone. I wanted to speak to someone. I was really freaking and couldn't self harm which I had tried.

I explained that I saw it as an opportunity for it to look like an accident. He then went on about consequences. Who would have paid them. I said no one. As it would have been an accident and he went on to tell me how wrong I was saying that the nurses would have been found negligent and the ward staff and others on the ward would have paid the consequences. So that made me feel bad. I am already feeling bad about what happened over the weekend and had a shit result back on one of my essays. So yeah not good really.

He asked me to throw my needles away. I was honest and said I wouldn't. I said I knew I would cut more if I did and I saw that as being worse as meant that I required services. And that this was stopping me from cutting. I knew I couldn't throw them away. Not yet. I am not sure if I ever will be able to. Even if I come out of this episode then I will need to have them there as a just in case.

So now I suppose I have to wait for crisis team to get in contact. For CPN/key worker referral to go through and for the next time I see Dr T which will be towards the end of March. So no change really. I am still in the same position. I still feel crap and suicidal. It was noticed today also that I was quiet at work. I just blamed it on being tired.

So I don't really know what I can do now. Not seeing Sam until a week on Wednesday as of her annual leave.

I was asked a couple of questions from other members about being challenged and other support groups...
At first I wanted to get up and walk out. But I calmed myself down and saw what he was doing. And to be fair to him I could see his point. So I wasn't going to achieve anything by doing that.

Dr T is ok actually. I wasn't keen at first but today my opinion changed of him. I can see where he is coming from and see what he is getting at. And looking at what he is doing from a professional point of view I get it and agree. It's just that I don't like being challenged and can become quite defensive. But in his position I would be doing exactly what he is.

In terms of groups etc...I wont do them. I know I posted yesterday about people asking for help and when people were suggesting things they kept knocking them back. And being in agreement with the person who wrote something quite controversial about a person and I agreed with them. I realise I am being that way also. Having asked for help and not prepared to listen. I have reasons for not doing groups or even going to certain places. The first being is that because of what I am doing and what I have done. I work in social care. I don't want to risk coming across my own service users. I have already experienced meeting service users when I have been in the waiting room at the psych offices. Then I have seen social workers who I have been in contact with through work while I have been waiting. I can't risk people I work with seeing me and either finding out what has been going on. The other thing about groups is I can't talk to people. I can't unless I am in a private place, there is no chance of others over hearing and I know that person. I need to feel some kind of connection to that person for me to be able to tell them anything.

Yes I can tell someone who is from psych medicine, a nurse who I have never met that I self harm, that recently has got worse and I feel low. But that is about as far as it goes. I don't tell people about me. Nothing about my thoughts or what goes through my head. Yesterday with the nurses on 136 suite I was able to tell a little bit more to as I spent 8 hours there. He didn't push me and he was really good...and it was a he!!!! For some strange reason I am able to talk to blokes better than I can women.
I want to build a support circle. Not a social one. This is all private to me. To friends it is scary and they don't understand. It scares them. I don't want to push them away. I did that a couple of years back and went a year without seeing a lot of my friends. I am different to my friends in the fact that I self harm. It's not something I expect them to understand or that I even want them to. I want my friends for going out with, having fun with. I am the strong one. I am the one who has worked in psychiatric places, I am the one who is working towards a career in an area which involves mental health. I am the one they ask advice from. I am the one who is strong. I don't want people worrying about me. I want to be able to talk to someone and not shock them with what I have to say or make them overly worry. For me having worked in psychiatric care I know within those circles self harm and mental health is something that is discussed every day. I have worked with people who have done shocking things (eg..woman's private place also known as a hidey hole - gross I know but some of the stories I have you would never believe), I know in that client group I am normal! I am not over worried about. Mental health is so stigmatised and I don't want my family and friends thinking I am different as they would do if they knew what was going on. I don't want to feel any more "strange" than I already do. It's bad enough me dealing with it without making other people deal with it. I want a professional support circle as within that I am normal. Here I am normal and anonymous.

And to be honest I don't think I have any friends who I could confide like that. I don't have any really close friends any more. I used to. But since 2008 when I cut myself off I have never really got back the closeness and not been able to confide in them. And as awful as it sounds I am embarrassed by myself and the feelings I have.

So tonight. I thought I would try and talking to a friend. I thought I would be able to have a chat properly and try and be honest. See what a good friend I am I didn't even know her grand dad died only last week. I couldn't off load on her when she has that to deal with. This friend Raq, I let her read my diary a couple of years ago and it was after that I cut off contact. I was embarrassed by it. I am embarrassed by myself. So I decided I wasn't going to say anything. She asked me if I had been on any dates recently as we usually have a good laugh about the nutters I have met on line. I just said I haven't even bothered. She asked why not and I just said my head wasn't in the right place. She asked me if I was bad again. I said yeah. She asked if I was seeing anyone and I mentioned the counsellor first and then told her that was seeing a psychiatrist. I haven't said anything else and I changed the subject or gone in to any detail. I don't want to tell people I know. I just don't want to let anyone close to me at the moment.

 The drive helped though. I had the music on really loud and when I was driving along I was screaming out the songs. Especially the Fuck You song by Cee Lo Green. In my own selfishness of being depressed etc I have let my friendships go to pot. They don't even contact me to let me know someone close has died.

I am also in a bit of a mess as I had some marks back today from work I have done at uni. I was expecting a good mark and I only just passed. It's the second essay I have had back. I passed the first one but again only just. I put so much time and effort in and only just passing them. It really makes me wonder if I am cut out to be doing a Masters. In my degree I never really cared that much. I didn't put effort in and would leave doing the essay until the day before it was due in. And I was still getting better marks. I don't mind getting average marks when I don't put effort in. But when I put loads of effort in and still only get average grades it really is making me question if I am doing the right thing. Should I have done the undergraduate course instead? So been feeling shit about that, the psychiatrist appointment and just everything in general really. I don't know how much more I can take. I am starting to feel and think "WHAT IS THE POINT". Yeah sure I will be good at the job, hopefully unless I royally screw up. But there are plenty of other great social workers out there. I am sure some of the ones I am training will be amazing. So I will be one less. So what!

As I said to them in the MHA assessment on Sunday, the course is the one positive thing, the one thing that keeps me going,

Dr T said he was glad I wasn't sectioned. He did say also that being hospital isn't best for me at the moment. At the MOMENT. So does that mean if it carries on it would be?  He also said if I went in it would be a matter of weeks for full assessment. He doesn't know that I spend a lot of time researching methods. He doesn't know it's one of those things that I always think about. It is taking over my life. I have told Sam. But as I don't have a definite plan then she can't say anything to anyone. But if they knew just how much it was going through my head and there is only one thing that is keeping me going then what would they do? I think his biggest concern is that I don't speak to anyone. That I only really speak to Sam about things and I need to learn to ask for help when I am in Crisis Point. I don't want to ask for help when I feel like that. I worry it will be seen as attention seeking. I really don't think I will be calling anyone from that team. If I want to SH I will usually. I really don't know what I am going to do!

Sunday, 20 February 2011

Feeling Like Crap

I feel worse after last night. I feel really let down in my self. I am humiliated that I got myself in to a position like that. I don't know what I was thinking thinking I would win against 3 police officers.I am covered in bruises and I can't lift my arms up as of bruises and pain around my collar bone.

I really don't know what was going through my head. What was I thinking. I would never jump off a bridge. That's not my method. I don't have the balls to do that. My plan is to make it look like an accident and is as painless as possible. Not jumping off a bridge in to icy water. Brrrrrr!

I don't know what to do with myself today. I am irritated easily. I am feeling low. I feel that I humiliated myself. There is no way I can go back to work there now. Not for about a year at least. I have shot myself in the foot really. I had to be assessed by a city social worker. At least I didn't know him. But what's to say I may not come across him at some point in a professional capacity.

I keep saying to the professionals that I don't think hospital admission is a good idea as would make things worse for me. But would it. They are there to make things better and to make it so I don't self harm and am not able to. In terms of uni and the career side it would. It would mean that I don't graduate at the same time as my friends. I don't want to go through that again. It would mean people would know. Which is a bad thing. I don't want my family to know what is going through my head. I don't want them knowing that I am suicidal and that the self harm has got out of control. There is the stigma attached to it and the embarrassment that goes a long side it. But I also feel that they would not be very supportive. It would be thrown back in my face years down the line. They have already do that now with things. They are funny about me drinking because they think it's a problem as they blame the fact that I self harmed that occasion that they know about, on alcohol. So they are really funny about it. I get snide comments and remarks and it makes me feel like shit. So why should I tell them.

I struggled to articulate today why I didn't tell anyone about the self harm and my feelings. They didn't seem to understand. I say they I had the social worker, police doctor and psychiatrist all telling me I needed to talk to people about my emotions. It's just not going to happen. Then he was saying things like get a hobby. As if I have the time for that. All basic rudimentary stuff which I have heard before. Get a pet, well I've got a dog. Exercise, it doesn't lift my mood I have tried it before. And to be honest I don't have the motivation to get out and do it. It's true I don't have a support network as I don't talk to my friends or anyone about my feelings and what I am going through.

I feel so frustrated. I really don't know what I can do. I write to distract myself and it helps in me making sense of my thoughts etc. I don't see it as creative. I am not the creative type. Poetry - yeah right like I'm going to do that. Art - tssssk. After year 9 I didn't step foot in the art room again. I hate art, I can't do it. Groups - they hadn't read my history and none of them knew me or my history.

I am fed up. I am tired. I don't know what else I can do. Maybe hospital would actually help and I need to put my mental health before anything else like my career. I know I am going to attempt suicide again. I don't know if it will work. That person who doesn't care is getting a stronger and stronger hold over me. If people were to find out it would give me free reign on self harm, suicide attempts etc. I keep saying my worst nightmare is going in to hospital and I say to people it would make it worse. I am not so sure anymore. I need help dealing with this. I think I am going to ask for a CPN or something. Someone I can call when things are bad, someone I can go meet somewhere to access support. I feel I am relying too much on Sam. I freaked a bit when she said she was annual leave next week. She said I can still text her and email her if I am struggling but she is on annual leave. She deserves that time off and not have to deal with me. I thought about texting her today but I thought it's a Sunday morning. Really what is she going to be able to do. It's not fair to invade on her weekend. I need someone who I can speak to when I feel like I do now. Someone who I know who will give me support. I wont make use of crisis team as any dealings I have had with them before I have not really liked them. I seem to have found a couple of people who I can start to be honest with. Mike, he will only see me to assess me in the ED or on the ward to ensure that I am ok to go home. I have called him a couple of times and he has said that there is nothing his department can do. So I can't use him. It's just someone to talk to. To sound off on. Someone who is trained and can give relevant advice. I seem to find someone who I like and have seen a few times, begin to trust them and then rely on them. But these are the wrong people who I am getting attached to. They can't do anything regarding my care.

I want someone I can talk to, who I can be honest with, who I wont scare by telling them all I think about is suicide and that I wont feel bad offloading on. Someone who is not personally worried about me. Who has heard what I am saying or similar things before and is not personally effected by what I say. Someone who is being paid to do a job of being supportive. Then I wont feel bad. I think it's something to raise with the Dr T tomorrow.

I am dreading the appointment. He is going to ask me what has happened since I last saw him. I am going to have to tell him about the suicide attempt in hospital. I am going to have to tell him about being detained on a 136. I wish I wasn't this person. I am not a person who self harms I am a self harmer. It has taken over my life. Suicide has taken over. I don't want to be this person.

Section 136

Crap. Things have really gotten out of hand.

Last night I was arrested and placed under Section 136 of mental health act. Basically the police arrest people being a bit mental in public places. I'll start from the beginning.

I went out last night and got wasted. On the way home I was feeling rather suicidal and thought that the idea of jumping off a bridge was a good idea. I remember standing on the ledge and then sitting on the ground. I don't know who turned up first whether it was police or ambulance. I said I wasn't going anywhere but the made me get on the ambulance. They said I had to go to the ED to be assessed by crisis team. I was not happy but the police said I would be arrested and taken to 136 suite if I didn't go. So didn't leave me with much choice. I didn't realise the police were following in their car and I tried to get off ambulance while we were moving. I get to the ED and I don't want to go in. The paramedics were really nice to me saying I needed to speak to someone. I was panicking as I didn't want to wait in waiting room around other people so I was reluctant to go sign my self in at the desk. In the end I gave the paramedic my details and he did it for me. I was pacing around a bit as I was anxious. I was drunk but the reality of what was happening was setting in.They wouldn't let me go to the toilet which just pissed me off. The police were with me now. There was 3 of them. I made an attempt to go to the loo and they grabbed on to me and put my arm up my back restraining me and hurting me.

They transferred me to a cubicle and the police were in there with me. In my drunken state I thought I would be able to leave and they restrained me again...painfully. They finally let me go to the toilet but the police woman wouldn't close the door. So I had to pee and people could hear me. To be fair I have a history of locking my self in the toilet and self harming so that I could understand. Bitch nurse was on. She had a go at me asking what had happened, why I was back again, why I was messing up my own life and having a go about resources. OK, I was drunk and not exactly cooperative but there was no need for that. She doesn't know me, she doesn't know anything about me. She always calls me by the wrong name, it's similar but wrong and it drives me mad. She's dog ugly also and I really don't like her. She's a horrible, un-compassionate person.

Anyway, after a while the police changed over and they said I could go out for a cigarette. I was escorted out by the 2 of them and I was pacing around. I got all panicky again and said I didn't want to go back in and see crisis. That I wasn't a threat to myself as all I wanted to do was go home and go to bed. Next thing I know I am being handcuffed behind my back, painfully and restrained again. They then tell me I am being arrested under 136 MHA. I then said I would be willing to go back in to the ED. I was willing to see crisis team and basically begged them not to take me on 136. I tried arguing with them but they said I had had my chance. They had been with me a couple of hours already and I was resisting all the time. I told them they couldn't arrest me if I was willing to attend the ED as 136 is for people who are not willing. I was sat in the back of the car with my legs out. I refused to get in saying they had wrongfully arrested me as I was willing. I am not sure when it comes to absconding risk of they can arrest you even if you say you are willing. I need to look in to it more on that one. Not that I will be able to do anything now about it but still.

My problem with the 136 is that I have worked on the wards at that hospital and on 136 suite. I know a lot of the staff. So I was really panicking now. They wouldn't loosen the hand cuffs or bring them round to my front. I told them it was really hurting me but they couldn't care less. I can't see why they needed to be round my back as I was not being violent. Just argumentative and stupid really. The woman police officer was horrible. She was a nasty bitch also and had no understanding or compassion in regards to why I was feeling like I was. She had no interest at all. Was rude to me and even when I was polite to her she was arrogant and off.

So I was taken in to the suite in my local hospital. I knew the nurse on and the HCA. It was mortifying. Especially as I was in cuffs. I didn't want to be in the communal area at all and they let me into the room. I went to the loo and just collapsed in to the bathroom corner crying. The nurse came in and spoke to me. I said I would rather be in the cells at the local police station than there and asked if that was a possibility. The police man who was nice came in and explained that I had been removed from a public place to a place of safety and now I was in it they couldn't transfer me. I spoke to the nurse again and she knew who I was and explained that I couldn't be sent back down to the ED to see crisis team and they couldn't come there to assess me as now I had been arrested on a 136 (or detained as I hadn't actually committed a crime) I needed to have a full MHA assessment. I knew there was no way that I was going to be going home after a while. Having worked in that suite I know how long it takes for them to arrange doctors and social workers. You need to have three people present to do the MHA assessment and I had feelings that I would be there all day and more people would know about it. Especially as the nurse due on Sunday morning was one that I knew reasonably well.

She gave me the option of being transferred to another city to use their 136 suite. I only know one member of staff who works in that hospital so I thought my chances would be better going there. I was worrying about how much it would cost for me to get home and the nurse said if that was worrying me they would pay for it.

The police tried to talk me out of going saying it was not a nice place and that I wouldn't get a bed there like in my own hospital. I said I didn't care as no one would know me and they would at local hospital where I work. The police said I would have to wait a while as they were going to transfer me in the back of the van in the cage. I pleaded with them and said I hadn't been violent to them so why were they making me go in the cage. I felt like I was being punished and that I was a criminal. About 40minutes later we reached the other hospital. It was so cramped in the cage I practically flew out as soon as they opened the doors. I was met by another nurse and him and the police took me to their suite. It was a tiny place. Luckily they don't make you stay in the tiny room. It would be like a seclusion room. There was no window in there and it felt really claustrophobic. The nurse was lovely. He was really caring and asked me lots of questions and took an interest in me.He let me sit in the office area also. I think patients are allowed to use that area. But I wasn't exactly a risk to anyone. He even let me go out for a cigarette. It's technically not allowed on a 136 but he took me out with another member of staff. I was hardly going to out run two blokes who can restrain to get me back on to the ward/room.

Another nurse took over the shift. He was also really nice. He spent ages talking to me and asking me about everything what had led up to it. I told him quite a bit but I kept quite a bit hidden. I knew he was assessing me so I told him I have problems being honest when it comes to things like this as I don't want to end up in hospital. I told him why I thought I did what I did last night and how I was feeling. I talked a little about having a constant fight and how draining it was for me to do this and keep up an act to everyone else as I don't want people seeing me as vulnerable or weak. I also told him that even if I was making suicide plans that I wouldn't tell him as would stop me going ahead with it. I did tell him it was something I thought about a lot and ways in which I have considered but have not come to a definite plan of action.

So. being assessed my 2 doctors and a social worker. So in total there were 3 blokes a woman and me. I actually prefer men when it comes to things like this. I don't know why but I feel more at ease. It was the woman who was asking most the questions though. I was being really careful in what I was saying. I was conscious they were there to look whether or not to detain me. I had to be careful as I didn't really want to mention what I had told the nurse but at the same time I couldn't lie if I were asked a question about it.

They basically wanted to know what has been going on on to lead up to this event where I was considering jumping off a bridge. I was honest and said that I thought it was a mixture of impulsivity, what I have been saying to Sam in the last weeks and general stupidness. They asked me what I wanted. So I explained about wanting to go home but I wanted support in place. I explained how going in to hospital would be the end of my career and life as I would just give up and I would lose control. I said I was scared and I didn't really know what to do though.

They went away to deliberate on me. It was awful. And when they came back in it seemed an age before she got to the bit where she said they were happy to release me off the section.

It really scared me. The staff at other city hospital were fantastic. I said to the band 6 who was with me this morning that as nice as he was I wish I hadn't met him. Or if it was it was through different circumstances. He was really helpful with giving me reassurance in regards to the MHA assessment and I felt like he was taking my side. He said he didn't believe I should be in hospital as feels it would make things worse. So he was with me on that. He said also that he hoped to see me again but through work not my problems.

I feel so stupid, so humiliated, so let down with myself that I let things get to that stage.

So after 7 hours on other city 136 suite I was allowed to go. They even paid for my taxi home which would have cost me about 40quid.

I need to not binge drink like that. I am certain that alcohol led to my appalling behaviour and actions last night.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Two People...or maybe three?

There are two different people. These two people are constantly fighting with each other. It worries me how different the people are and how much conflict there is. I worry about how much longer it will be before I can't control and fight the side that is sinking deeper and deeper.

There is one person who is career minded. Wants to do well at uni, in placement. She hides the other person quite well. To most people they wouldn't know that there is this constant fight. That there is battles every day. She can hide the scars and has a reason/excuse for most things. She tries to keep track of the web of lies about where she has been when having been in A+E or not in for the night as have been somewhere else. This person does not want anyone knowing what is going on. She doesn't show anger/stress and deals with it. She doesn't get in to  a flap about things as there is no point. After all where will this get her. This person is bright and bubbly . This is the outside person.

The other one. Well, she's in a mess. She wants to take over. She doesn't care. She wants to end everything. She thinks why is she bothering with uni when she knows that she wont be around to see the career. This person self harms. Why? She doesn't really know. She cuts, she lets, she occasionally drinks in excess which makes her pass out. Although that has stopped now she is getting 2 day hangovers. Is that age or medication for PCOS? She doesn't think letting it as bad as the cutting. It's not like she has to get medical treatment for it like when she cuts. She doesn't have to deal with the ED, doesn't have to go through yet another assessment from Psych Med. No ones knows. They don't have the evidence of this like when she cuts. It's something she can keep more hidden.

 This is the person who has on loop in their head plans of death and ways in which it can be achieved. She considers different scenarios. How will they play out? If she took this this and this together would they work. She reads a story in the paper about a famous person dying through an overdose. She wonders what it was and how she can get her hands on it. She spends ages on the internet looking up medications, vitamins and how they would affect her if she was to OD. She struggles to cross the road because the temptation is there. She controls it somewhat in not taking every small opportunity. She is saving it. She is selfish but at the same time thinks that she doesn't want someone else to blame themselves. She knows if someone jumped in front of her while she was driving how it would cause her to blame her self in someway. And, not just the blame if it was unavoidable but the feelings of anger and resentment towards the person who chose her car to jump in front of. She looks for ways so that it would look like an accident. No one needs to know it was suicide. Her family would feel worse and blame themselves that they didn't notice, that they didn't see it coming.

This person has irrational thoughts. Has paranoia attacks. Has hidden in a wardrobe before because she was convinced the person knocking on the door was going to come in and take her away. She has been at work on the wards when she was having delusional thoughts that she wasn't really staff and that she was a patient and the doctor was assessing her. Not the person she was observing. Has been manic. She struggles to concentrate on one thing as everything is going so fast, is hyperactive; she can't sit down for more than a minute without having to do something (at least her room is spotless when this is the case), she doesn't sleep; she will get by on about 3-4 hours, she doesn't stop talking. Part of this is fear that people will realise something is wrong so she talks at them.

Sometimes this person is the stronger of the two and there will be hospital admissions, more lies, more excuses, questions to be answered. What are the ramifications for this person winning the fight. At the time they feel great. They have won. The self harming makes them feel better. It's a release, an escape, a euphoric feeling. It's after that it's when it's bad. The infections, the questions. The questions!!!! Trying not to give too much away. Person number one is fighting back. Wanting to regain control. Wanting to ensure that the career is not effected. So she starts lying. She worked out what the people wanted to hear a long time ago. She knows what to say to people to avoid any further action. "I regret it, I no longer want to die, I wasn't planning it, it just happened, I'm getting support so that it won't happen again".

Then there is me.

I am trying to resolve the conflict between these two people. It is me that goes to the counsellor, to the psychiatrist, who is trying to get help. I feel that there may come a time where I can not resolve the conflict anymore and all my crazy is going to spill out. I know when one is stronger than the other and I try to do things that will quieten person number 2 down. I want person number one to win. I want to stop the fighting. It's so bloody draining. I am scared. I am confused. I am tired. I don't know how much longer that this is going to go on for. How much longer can I support number 1 before number 2 becomes dominant and has more strength than any of us. There are times when she is. But it's usually short lived as I can bring out number 1 to be more dominant. What if I can't? What happens then?

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Letter to Gom's Mum.

Dear Anne,

My mum said she bumped in to you today Anne and she said that you said you missed me. I want you to know the feeling is mutual. I miss you all so much and I saw you as my own family. It was so sweet what you said about wanting to give me a hug. Especially as in the 9 years I knew you we only ever hugged once. That was on that horrible Saturday that Gom threw me out. I feel that I haven't just lost my best friend that I had in Gom but also 3 other members of my family.

I have been thinking about you quite a bit recently. Sounds stupid but I wonder if Meg your dog is still alive as she was getting on a bit. I wonder how Charles' (Gom's Dad) Dad is. I liked him. He was a sweet old man. Really thoughtful. I have also thought of your mum of course. I wonder how she is, and if she is happy now Gom and I are no longer together. She never liked me and Gom told me how she gave him some money once I had moved out.

My mum said that you said how you hoped you would bump in to me. I sort of feel the same. I don't really want to get in contact as I think it would upset me and I haven't been in contact with you since May when I found out that Gom was now going out with someone else. I didn't want it to seem as though I was fishing for info or trying to get at Gom in another way. I feel bad for not keeping in contact more, but then I suppose it's normal isn't it when a relationship breaks down. I don't know what I would say to you if I saw you. I have been in your area quite a bit through my placement over the past few days. I keep an eye out for you when I am driving around. I went in to Morrisons today in my lunch break but I didn't see anyone I know. I suppose it's unlikely I'd bump in to you as I think in all the years we lived only a mile away from each other we only ever bumped in to each other once in the supermarket.

I really miss Sundays and coming to yours for dinner. It was a nice family thing and I liked the way we would moan at our men being the father like son.

I miss Charles also. He always made me laugh. I liked the way that Gom and him bonded over football and stuff like decorating and car stuff.

How is Martine. I know I deleted her on Facebook. It was nothing she had done but I didn't want constant reminders about Gom and seeing photos of him and another girl was just not healthy for me. Where is she working now? How did she do in her PGCE?  I never actually said anything to Gom, but I also envied the relationship you had with Martine. I wish I had the same relationship with my mum.

I loved the way you always included me when it came to things like Christmas. I felt so relaxed at yours and coming round to visit was never a chore. I actually used to suggest it to Gom in the week when we were thinking of something to do and I used to suggest coming to yours.

I know that you must know of some of the problems I had with my Mental Health as Gom would have told you. I know that you know that I had problems. I think I am finally getting to the route of them now. I know I never talked about them with you but I know you knew. I don't think you know the extent of them but I wont go in to details and I wont tell you about what has happened since Gom and I broke up. It's not fair, you don't want to hear it so I wont tell you.

So I started my Masters course in September. It's going well. Really hard work and I am so skint all the time as the bursary doesn't go very far. When they said full time they weren't joking. My Psychology degree was supposed to be full time but I was in 6 hours a week and never did work for the lectures. This is full time and some. So I am still living with the parents who drive me insane, but I am so busy I spend a lot of time in my room reading for uni. At the moment I am on placement so I am spending my evenings working on work stuff. I have spent most of tonight trying to find a house for a client so I have been emailing about that. It's hard work but I am really enjoying it. I can really get my teeth stuck in to it. I am a little worried about it being too much and me not being able to turn off. I know I shouldn't be looking up houses for her in my own time but it saves me doing it tomorrow so I can actually concentrate on other clients and getting things sorted for this one.

As you know I went travelling for 3 months. It was amazing. It was a bit scary being in Bangkok when there were riots going off but I managed to avoid most the trouble. I left on the morning of the worst riots where loads of people were killed. It all over spilled on to the road I was staying on. It would have been quite scary. I had an amazing time and I did not want to come home. I actually considered getting a job out there and staying a bit longer. But as it happens I suppose I was quite lucky coming home when I did. Not sure if you know but I ended up in hospital about 2 weeks after getting back and I was in for nearly 2 weeks. I fell off a motorbike (although my parents and family think push bike) and smashed my knee up pretty badly. 3 months later (yeah in true Mental101 style I did it on my 2nd day in to the trip) it hadn't healed, was really infected and I was really ill. The infection spread to my blood. Was a horrible few days that was. But the best diet in the world.

Any way. There is not much else left to say.

I really miss you guys and wish there was someway that we could keep in contact without it being weird as of Gom.

Love you.


Wednesday, 16 February 2011

Motorcycle Diaries...Pt 2

As I said in previous post this was not the end of my motorbike problems.

I was staying on the small Island of Ko Lanta in Thailand. I wanted to see more of the island than just the area I was staying in. All there was in the area I was staying in was a couple of beach hut guest houses and a shop. Not even a 7/11 (I loved those as you could always guarantee tuna sandwiches and airconditioning. I was to find out there is only so long you can browse without looking a little odd).

The island had an old town I wanted to check out and a fishing village. These were about as far away from me as you could possibly get. Opposite ends of the island. I looked in to getting a tuk tuk driver to take me there and back but he wanted £20 for the days work. OK, not a lot of money but when you're only on a spending money budget of about £10 not really do able. The place I was staying was hiring about motorbikes for £5, to fill it up with fuel only cost about £4. So this was by far the cheapest option. It would give me more freedom and I could stop and check out places as and when I wanted. I knew I needed to get over my fear of bikes as I knew in Vietnam when on my own it would be the only way of getting around in any sort of speed. So I hired one.

After taking a couple of wrong turns...I didn't take a map, just looked at one and thought I knew the way. And I didn't really need a map as there was only one road going around the outside of the island and one through the middle. I did manage to get to Lanta Old Town. It was like something out of a Wild Western. The buildings were all Western style, wooden fronts with shutters. It was quite a cute place really.

 I stopped for some lunch at the only restaurant there. It was so expensive. It cost me about £5 for Spring Rolls. They weren't even nice. I mooched around for as long as I could in this place which was really not that long at all. I decided to get back on the bike and head down to the peninsula.

So I was riding along in the middle of nowhere. No one was around and the bike starts to judder. I don't think much of it. But I do worry a little as it seems to get worse. By this point I had taken the helmet off as it was far too big for my small head and kept covering my eyes. Speeds of 40mph on a bike and not being able to see are not a good combination. Nor are speeds of 40mph and your head hitting the concrete. But in my weird reasoning way I thought I am less likely to come off if I can actually see where I am going. Not maybe I should ask for another helmet. The laws over there are quite odd when it comes to helmets. Here you have to have full on proper helmets, there you can get away with ones that you would use for cycling. Or non at all as they don't really seem to pull you up on it. Oh and one of the wing mirrors wouldn't adjust so I only had one mirror. Anyhoo, the juddering becomes worse. I decide to stop and check it out. A bloody flat tyre. I am in the middle of no where. I have not passed civilisation in ages.

"Crap, crap crap".

I had no idea how long it would be before I reached the next hamlet and I knew I was only a few km's back to Lanta Old Town. I didn't want to ride the bike anymore as I was super scared I was going to fall off. So I have to push it. I never realised just how heavy those things were. Especially trying to push one uphill!!!!

About 1km later I see a load of people sitting around cooking and generally being people who don't have an awful lot to do. Please remember that it was pushing 40c and very very humid. So you can probably imagine the sweaty betty I was. Gross! Another reason I liked the motorbikes was because they give you a breeze as you ride along.

So I walk up to these people and say to them, knowing the answer already but ask anyway

"Do you speak English"?

No reply. Crap. I have about 8 people just staring at me. Wondering where this very red, sweaty girl has appeared from.

"Can you help me"?

I point to the tyre. A woman comes over takes the bike off me. She jumps on it and off she rides. They are all sitting there laughing at me.

"Ummmm, what's going on here. I think a woman has just calmly walked over to me got on the bike and stolen it and I have just given it to her. Crap. I could be in a bit of trouble here".

They are all just sitting staring at me, talking about me, pointing and laughing and I can't understand a word they are saying. After the longest 5 minutes of my life another woman comes from no where on a motorbike. Not mine. She gestures for me to get on.

"Well, what harm can it do. I may have just had a bike stolen off me. This woman is telling me to get on her bike. I think I will take the chance and go with her"?

So I get on the bike. We go about 500metres over the brow of the hill and she stops at a motorbike repair shop. I see my bike! Yay! And the woman who took it. That's what she was doing. The repair guy pulls my bike off the road and again more conversation and laughter at me. Although it was in a different language you can tell when people are talking about you and having a good laugh at your expense!

Anyway, he said he will fix the puncture for me. He can speak a little English. He said it needed a new inner tyre. It was just like a bike tyre that you pump up. He puts a new inner tube in and pumps it up. All the while his whole family have come out to watch. So I am sitting in a greasy garage surrounded by about 10people who happen to want to see him change this tyre. I don't know, maybe it was some right of passage for him being a (I wont say qualified as I don't think anyone has actual qualifications out there they just do the job they are good at) mechanic and his family needed to see this.

I am sat here thinking I bet this is going to cost the earth. There is no way I can get off twice with things like this. So when he asked me for 200BHT about £4 I happily paid. I decided I was not going to push my luck any further with the motorbike that day and to give the peninsula a miss. So I decided to go back to the guesthouse.

When I got back I told the owner what had happened. He went ape at me. I was got a little angry too as I was tired from pushing the bike. He said I had been massively overcharged and should have been about 50BHT (£1). I said I thought it was quite cheap as new tyres at home cost about £25 minimum. And I got breakdown included. Here I pay £17 a month for my bank account. With that I get AA Homestart which should cost about £70 a year (I also get other benefits such as lower interest rates on my over draft, free mobile phone insurance and free worldwide travel insurance. It actually works out cheaper for me to pay for my account than to have it all seperate....just in case you were wondering it's the Lloyds TSB Platinum account) and ok, so I had to push it uphill, I didn't think I had done too badly. I don't know why he was so angry I don't think he ever had any intention of refunding me for it. I didn't expect to be but I thought I best let him know some work had been done on the bike..

To top it all off I was sun burnt. I had been wearing a t-shirt so I had a white body and t-shirt tan. I tend to go quite brown so the tan was quite funny. It still actually remains where I have whiter shoulders than my arms. Stupid t-shirt tan. LOL!

I'll never wear a vest again!

Monday, 14 February 2011

Falling Off Motorbikes (and more fun).

First off I say motorbike but it was more of a scooter/moped but motorbike seems so much cooler and not as pathetic.

So I was in Thailand. It was only my 2nd full day there. The night before I had decided to rent one from the guest house I was staying at. I had never ridden one before. I took it out to go see the sunset and was fine on it. It was like riding a bike. I was a bit nervous when massive trucks overtook me and gave me a little wobble. But after a while I was going at the speed limits of the road having quickly gained confidence as it was so bloody easy. Before this I had only ever been on a bike of the motorised variety once. That was 6 years previous and on the back of someone Bangkok. But here I was in a tiny town a couple of hours north of Bangkok.

So on this day I had got up earlyish and decided to go around the temples. I gathered in my wanting to save money rather than hiring a tuk tuk for the day it would be cheaper for me to rent my own bike. And, it was a reasonably quiet town, nothing like Bangkok. It was scary enough being on the back of one never mind trying to negotiate the traffic of Bangkok on one. I had been to a cafe for the most disgusting food in the world. The consistency was like a runny jelly (for any Americans Jello) without the blobs. It was horrid but it was the only place open. So a little less than ravenous more just like hungry I set out again. I had ridden around a few temples not really looking where I was going. Just going for a ride about. I decided to go down one road that turned in to more of a dirt track. I slowed down loads as was a bit bumpy. I realised it was a dead end and knew I needed to turn around. Having got quite complacent on the bike I thought I would be able to do it all in one go. Apparently not. The turning circle on the thing was much wider than I expected (I thought it would be just like a normal cycle). There was a mini-van parked up and I thought "shit I'm going to hit it". So I turned the handle bars a little more and braked. I braked in the wrong order as my front wheel stopped and my back kept on going. I also caught the throttle at the same time. Result. Threw me off just in front of the mini-van.

"Crap the bike! I've signed a disclaimer saying any damage I have to pay for, shit shit shit"! So I picked the bike up and put it up right. "What's all that over the bike. I hope I've not torn a fluid pipe or something. Where the hell is all that fluid coming from"? I look down at myself. "Shit, I've ripped my trousers, these were new on today and I have not brought any other cropped trousers with me and I can't afford to be buying clothes"! Then I looked at my knee. "Oh dear, that needs looking at". "Oh my god, oh my god, oh my god, i just saw what happened are you ok"? Said the English raised Thai girl who jumped out the van. "Errrr...I think I may need some stitches in my knee". She looked "you need more than that girl, I'm calling you an ambulance"! I looked at my knee again. It looked as though I had pushed my knee cap in to my leg and displaced it. It didn't hurt at all though. She then saw my hand. It was kind of spurting blood from my palm. "Look at your hand, here put this on it (*handed me a wad of tissues)". That be what the "fluid" all over the bike was then. Oops. I looked over the bike and saw I had scratched it quite badly. "Shit".

"I'm calling an ambulance" she said.
"Don't you bloody dare, I know where the hospital is (I notice things like that as I am kinda accident prone) I'll ride there". She took the keys out the ignition.
"Not a chance".
"Not a chance you are getting me in an ambulance". I wasn't thinking of my injuries. I was thinking of the bike. I wasn't going to leave it there. I didn't know where I was. It could have been stolen or anything. I was also thinking what an ambulance would cost me out of my budget. NO WAY was I going to be getting in some ambulance.
"Fine, I am calling the police then".
"No, no no. I can ride there. I am not losing that much blood, really, I work with people who self harm, I've seen worse, look it's fine (*removing tissues and it had slowed to a fast pouring now. It was slowing. I was happy). Ummm, maybe I should go to the hospital".
"I am calling the police".
By now a few people had gathered to look at the stupid white girl. I called them SWG moments where I had done something that caused people to look at me and think..."ahhhh another western tourist, stupid silly girl"!
The police showed up on their equivalents of blues which was actually reds. By now they had moved me away from the bike and got me sitting down raising my hand and leg. I was sat at the top of some steps in the shade. Next thing I know the police man is taking photos of me. No "hello, what have we here then", no "how are you". Just snap happy on his camera. Nice. Nice to know that this whole debacle is being made proof of in their history.
"You need an ambulance".
"No I don't and I am not going on one, I know where the hospital is I will ride the bike there and then I can ride it back to the guest house".
*Laughing "no chance. We are not letting you get back on that bike".
"Pleeeeeeease" *like a sulky child.
"Ok, we take you to hospital".
"No, the bike, I am not leaving it. I don't know where I am. I am bad with directions and I will never find it again (I had actually lost my hotel the night before. I was in the wrong area, first I got the name of it completely wrong called it it Saaaaaaaun asking local Thai people where it was. Then to be told it was Buan Suan with the pronunciation having to be exactly right or they still didn't have a clue. In the end I paid someone to follow them on their bike...turns out I had been up and down my own road about 5 times...I was looking on the wrong side of the road).
"Errrrr. OK. We get police to take bike back to police station, will you please then go in ambulance".
"No, I am not letting the bike leave my sight". You hear so much of police corruption and I was kind of delirious by now.
"Ok, we take you in car. We follow policeman back to station. You can see bike in station then we take you to the hospital".
Realising I am not going to win on this one and they won't let me take the bike myself
"OK, fine"!

So I got in the back of the lovely air conditioned police car being really careful not to get blood on much. I would say anything but by this point I was covered. The police took me to the station showed me the bike parked and locked up. I could relax a bit now. All the time though they were taking random pictures of me and smiling and laughing at me.

So they park up at the front of the hospital. I am walked in by them. At first the nurse doesn't really look at me and gestures for the police to take me else where. She then sees that maybe, I could do with being seen to quickly. Either that or they thought "ummmm money maker"! I was led in to what was like a massive operating theatre but with more than one bed. There were about 10 beds. All of a sudden about 10 people ascended on me. Nurses and doctors from every direction. I was a bit unsure as to what was going on. They started squirting stuff at the wound and it was hurting like hell now. A doctor then came and talked to me. He said what they were going to do and talked me through it. I wasn't aware he was a doctor. I thought he was just some English speaking dude type translator guy they managed to find quickly. It was only after about an hour I discovered he was a doctor. I was so surprised. Here the docs see you then go and he had spent all this time with me. They numbed up my knee and scrubbed it out. They actually scrubbed it. It makes me feel sick thinking of it. I would have thought they would have got tweezers and picked the gravel out...there was a lot in there but they seemed to scrub it. They spent about an hour sorting my knee out. Internal stitches and external ones. No x-ray though. They then went to work on my hand. They scrubbed that also. They didn't just use saline either. They used some kind of disinfectant wash. I remember lying there looking up at the operating lights and they were covered in dust. Not just a small amount but cobwebs and layers of the stuff. Kinda worrying. The nurses were all pristine though. I wonder how many changes of clothes that they make a day as they were dressed all in white and it was white white. Definitely been using Daz!

All this time I still had about 3 police officers with me. Taking photos every now and again also. When I first got to the hospital there was only 2 of them but they called another one in. It was a woman. I am not sure if they thought I would want a woman there or if they thought..."lets get *insert name here to come and look how funny this whole situation is". I must have been on that table nearly 2 hours. I wasn't in pain anymore as of the anaesthetic but I was starting to worry about how much the hospital bill would come to. How much the bike was going to cost me.

I was told that I needed to have a course of antibiotics and they also prescribed me some painkillers and that I needed to go back to the hospital every day for 10 days to have the dressings changed and the wounds cleaned (like I was going to do that. My plan, go back one day, see how and what they do, go to the pharmacy and do it myself). The wheeled me out of the treatment area on a trolley bed and the police woman said I needed to pay and she would go and sort it for me. She came back to me with the price and said it was going to cost 1000BHT which was around £20. *Relief! So I gave her my bank card and off she trotted. I was waiting ages. I was starting to get worried. She came back and said she had sorted the prescription out but I needed to put my PIN in so that it could be paid. So I went off with her and the other two police men. I was the only foreign person in the hospital. Everyone else was local. I was being stared at by everyone. To make things worse I was being escorted by 3 policepeople so to them it may have looked as though I had done something wrong. I was also in torn clothes and covered in blood. A bit of a social faux pas in Thailand. You don't wear ripped revealing clothes and you make sure you look reasonably ok. I was still having my picture taken. They must have had over 100 by now! They then gave the camera to one of the locals and asked me to pose with the three of them. So somewhere out there is an awful picture of me with 3 policepeople. I wished I had got them to take one on mine, just so I would have the awful memory also. As much as I was worrying I couldn't help but see the funny side in all of this. After all this was me...Miss Accident. Miss Falls Over When Standing Up Right, Not Drunk/Stoned.

I decided to ask them why they were taking so many pictures. With a smile I was told it was for their boss so that they could document what they had done and what I was like. Yeah right!

The police were amazing. They really were. You hear so many stories about corrupt police in Thailand. About how they are unfair etc etc. But these guys were lovely. They may have been taking the piss out of me but it was all in good fun. I didn't expect them to stay with me. I thought they would dump me at the hospital, I would have to wait hours to be seen and not know anything that was going on. But both the police and the medical staff were top! How much time they spent with me making sure I was ok and that I understood everything. Ok, medically they probably missed quite a bit. I think here if you fell off like I did they would have checked things like my head and neck...(oh yeah I had taken the helmet off at this point also as it was making my head sweaty and it was too big! Clever aren't I, riding around on a motorbike with no experience of ever riding one and not even wearing a helmet) possibly sending me for x-rays to ensure I hadn't got anything in my knee etc etc. But I was happy with what I received. If I had any pains anywhere I would have mentioned it anyway.

So the police then said they would take me back to the guest house. Can you imagine the embarrassment. Walking in to your guesthouse with 3 police officers. GH Owner just looked at me and the police in utter shock. They had a conversation in Thai which obs I didn't understand. All I could do was apologise over, and over and over. GH Owner seemed really pissed off and not happy with me. I was quite upset. He said in a stern way "you pay for any damage, you signed contract". So here I am thinking he is going to con me here. This is another con I have heard of where they massively overcharge you for damage. So I was thinking this is going to cost me a couple of hundred quid. I am on my own. I don't know the country that well and I was starting to worry. He then said he was going to go get the bike which he was really pissed off at and did nothing to hide his emotions from me. After an hour or so he got back. "Bike it very scratched". I agreed and said I was sorry again and again. "You pay 150BHT".

"What? That is like £3. Of course I'll pay you that. I am so so so sorry."

I think he took pity on me. I think the police probably had a word also.

I went back to the hospital the next day to have the wounds dressed and cleaned. It cost £4. I thought no way am I coming back to the hospital every day for the next 10 days to be subjected to some kind of acid poured on and paying for the privilege. So as soon as I left the hospital I went to the pharmacy across the road and brought things like antiseptic wipes, inadine and dressings. I then went to the Tesco...yes Tesco across the road had a look around. For some strange reason I really like Tesco. Even if it is taking over the world. I like it. Sad aren't I?

It did become quite painful my knee. The guest house I was staying in had really small toilets and it was so painful going to the loo as I had to sit with my knee bent. To be comfortable I needed to have it outstretched. So peeing was rather painful!

I suppose I didn't really look after the wound properly. 3 months later once I was home I had cellulitis and the infection had got in to my blood. It put me in hospital for 12 nights and off work for a month as I was quite ill. I was quite lucky while I was away as only affected me for a few days at a time. It wasn't until right at the end of my trip on the last night that I became quite ill. I turned the air con off, had 2 layers of clothes on and all the blankets i could find in the room and I was still cold. The flight home was a nightmare and my knee was painful. I got home and I was ok after a couple of days. But the wound still hadn't healed properly so I went to my GP who sent me for an x-ray. Nothing in it. 2 weeks to the day after getting home I was admitted in to the hospital as my temperature had spiked and I was ill. It was my own fault though. I took my own stitches out and then was swimming in the sea, swimming pools, waterfalls and rivers. At first they thought some parasite had got in to me as of where I had been. But in the end they put it down to the infection. I was so lucky that the whole incident didn't ruin my trip and that I didn't get really ill while I was out there as I can't imagine being in hospital would have been a ball of laughs over there. Not that it was here but at least I had people visiting me.

Did it put me off getting bikes. Well. I decided I needed to get over my fear of them as I knew once I got to Vietnam that I would be needing to get around on taxi bikes everywhere as is cheapest way. So I rented another. Was it without problems? No!!!! But that is another story I will add at another time.

I just want to add here as a footnote. It may seem as though I was being quite prejudiced against these people. However, I had been to Thailand before and it does seem as though everyone tries to con you in some way and make money out of you. So that's why I was being over careful about things.

Sunday, 13 February 2011

Muse muse and muse! And memories of the last year!

It's been a year to the day since my world collapsed. It's been a year since I actually questioned my own sanity. OK I know it's not great now but I was made to question it in the way that perhaps things had happened and I wasn't aware of them type way. Today it is a year to the day since I was thrown out of the house I shared with Gom. I left my home. I left my cat. My suicide cat. Gom brought him for me after I first tried to kill myself back in 2007 and I loved him so much but there was no way he could have gone with me as he didn't like other cats and just attacked them when they came near. It's a year to the day since I parked the car in front of the river and nearly drove in to it.

This year has been pretty pants really. Except the 3 months I was away travelling it's been a really crap year. Even when I was travelling though I was thinking of death and suicide. I've had so many emotions in the past year. So many negative ones. Not so many joyful, happy memories. I can probably count my happy memories that I will remember on one hand. I don't even need a whole hand. Yet, the negative ones. Well I need a 100.

One of them is kinda funny in a way and kinda worrying. I'll write it down as I didn't write about it at the time in my diary as by then I had stopped writing about the trip in the diary.

I was in Vang Vieng in Laos...anyone who knows of this place will probably know where this story is already going. Anyone who doesn't well have a look at here here and here (this is probably the best one though). Bare in mind when I went was rainy season and the river flowed slightly faster. I went on the river a few times. Twice of those were with a tube and the other times I swam or had a kids blow up rubber ring. In Vang Vieng places openly sell weed and mushrooms. Either as shakes or as pizza, tea, spliffs etc. I had been with my friend Raq and we did mushrooms and we were fine on them. We just laughed so much. Actually we laughed so much we nearly wet ourselves.

Raq went after a month of travelling with me and I had about 2 weeks left of the end of my trip. Knowing how cheap Laos was and how much fun we had in Vang Vieng I decided I was going to go back there on my own for the final bit of my trip. I had another 10 days there on my own.

One day I went out on the river and got talking to people and hung on to their tube as they went in the tube and I swam along. I decided I was going to get a mushroom/weed shake. It was an all in one. I had had a couple of buckets (basically a kids sandcastle building bucket filled with a small bottle of Lao whiskey which was actually rum with industrial strength red bull, which is banned most places as actually has amphetamines in it. So I got this shake. After sitting in the sun a while watching people do rope swings (see video) etc I felt a tad weird. I got over paranoid as the people I was with hadn't done anything other than a couple of beers. All of a sudden I was tripping. Not in a nice way.

 I knew I needed to get back to the guest house and I knew I couldn't get back in the river. I was on the right side of the river at least so didn't need to get back in the water. From where I was I could see the point where the tuk tuks drop people off to start the tubing. For anyone who has been I was at the mud volley ball bar/shack and they drop you off at the Q bar. It was only a few hundred metres if that. I was managing to hold it together quite well. I knew I needed to walk back. By this point my shoes had broken so I was bare foot. I had to walk back across the fields. It was a tiny path along side a ditch filled with water. I knew where I needed to be going yet my legs weren't really working properly. I was tripping also. I kept seeing things. I have a massive phobia of snakes and I knew that there was a possibility of some being around. I felt as though the sun was melting me. It was hot. I was also dehydrated and I was tripping and had no shoes.

I honestly thought that my skin was peeling off my face as the sun was so hot on me. I was scared as I was also aware that I was tripping and paranoid as of the weed. I was walking across these fields and I could see the farmer watching me from the distance. The path seemed to stop and I had to cross the ditch. I was stood there for what seemed like ages thinking that there was no way I could cross this ditch. It was only about a metre wide and not a big drop or anything. So the farmers could get around they had these wooden planks across them. I needed to use these to cross. They were little bridges. I was starting to panic. Luckily the farmer could see that I was in trouble and took pity on me. He came up to me and took my hand and helped me across these little plank bridges. Finally I made it back to where the tuk tuks were. It must have taken me over an hour to walk so little distance. I thought I was cutting my feet to shreds as of being bare foot and I thought my skin was peeling off my face. I finally got back to the guest house at about 5pm and fell in to my bed. I slept until 11am the next day. I woke up feeling a little groggy but otherwise fine. After this I didn't do mushrooms again for the rest of the trip. Well I haven't done them again since. When I did them with Raq it was amazing. We laughed so much. I thought I would be ok. It wasn't. It was horrible. I remember looking at the mountains at the side of the river and the colours being so vivid. Everything was so sharp. It was like everything was fake. It was not a nice experience.

I went out on the river a couple of days after this. But I decided I wasn't going to do any substances. I was having fun watching people hurt themselves on the swings and slides etc. I wasn't even drunk. I had been in mud bar again. I really liked that bar. I was going back down the wooden ladder/steps and I just dropped. All the way from the top to the bottom. Right on my arse. What stopped me going in to the river was the wooden pole which ended up between my legs. If I had have been a bloke I would have probably have been infertile after. I wouldn't have minded to much if I was pissed but I was sober at this point. I had only had one beer. So on top of the pain I also had the embarrassment of falling. I did decide to drink through the pain. The next day though I could not move. I could not lie on my right side and I struggled to even sit down. That was the last day on the river for me. I spent the rest of my time lying on my left side in bars watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S.

Vang Vieng was also one of the times where I had been on the river and smoked and drank a LOT of weed shakes. I was also very drunk after drinking numerous buckets. I was with Raq. We were on the wrong side of the river and it was starting to get dark. I couldn't get down the river bank to get back in to the river. Raq enlisted the help of a very nice group of people. It was here I started having suicidal thoughts again. Wanting to take advantage of the situation that could so look like an accident. I thought I would be able to get on the river and just drift and maybe drown. I kept trying to get out the tube but they kept shouting at me. I never told Raq what I planned that day.

It was while I was in VV that I started stockpiling the pills to bring home as you don't need anything on prescription over there.

Although I have written about VV here in a bad way. It was one part of the trip that I enjoyed the most. It is an amazing place. Not at all an Asian experience, except from the total disregard for health and safety which is a common thing all over Asia. But it makes the experience that little bit more fun. But everyone in VV has happy. 8/10 also have pink eye. I managed to avoid that one luckily. My injuries from falling down the steps were bad enough thank you. If I had have been in this country I would have gone to the doc as I couldn't move for about a week after falling down the steps. I also had a very painful neck. I just got on with it though and with the help of prescription pain killers, diazepam, and alcohol it was made a little more bearable. If I was here paracetamol just would not have cut it!

Anyway. I appreciate people (if I have anyone who reads this) are probably getting sick of me moaning on about my mental health problems. Well tough! Lol. But I will try and lighten the mood a little and write now and again about my travel experiences. Writing helps me when I am in a bad way. I don't always need to write about how I want to die, how I want to self harm, and general moaning to be distracted so I will try and write more about travel experiences and fun stuff.

So from starting this blog in a horrible way, I think I have lightened the mood a little.


Saturday, 12 February 2011

Why Do We Do The Things We Do?

So why do we do the things we do? I keep asking myself the same question. I do stuff that I know will upset me yet you can't help but do it. I blame the internet. The things I have been doing

1) Facebooking Gom - I don't know why I look as his profile is private. But he has a picture on there from 5 years ago that I took. I deleted it on facebook as on my albums but still shows on his. I don't know why I keep looking.

2) Facebooking LD - Gom's new live in girlfriend. Again her profile is private. She has the most unflattering profile picture and looks a right mupet. But it's in the front room of the house I shared with Gom.

3) Looking up Gom on eBay and seeing what he has been buying. And then getting more upset when can see that he has been buying things for LD.

Why do I do it. I ask my friend Neve who happens to be Gom's mates now ex things about her as they used to do things as couples. She tells me stuff about them, stuff I don't wanna hear but stuff that I ask anyway.

Anyone got any idea on why we (or is it just me) does these things when we know they will upset us?

Please comment with your answers!!!!!

I've decided I am going to keep this one going and update it with the silly things I do that can make things worse. You know, types of things that make you wonder why you have done it....

So another one
A) Having an exam. Then looking back at your revision notes to see where you went wrong. It's too late. There is nothing you can do about it so why do you bother? I did this after a seen exam. So I had all the answers. After the exam I went back and looked at my revised answers and pulled up where I went wrong. Got my self in to a state as there were a few areas where I had forgotten to put which law was applied to the situation. Was in a bit of a quandary for 4-6 weeks until actually got the exam mark back. Turns out I passed and did quite well with 67%. A good exam grade for me but then beat myself up that didn't get just 3% more to take it up to the next level of grading!