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Vulnerability...

Discussion in 'General Support and Advice' started by I'mStillStanding, Mar 2, 2019.

  1. I'mStillStanding

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    For two days my head has been pounding, my heart has been racing, my chest has been tight, I’ve been on edge... I know it’s just the stress and my anxiety... well today it has been even worse. Probably because last night I got a phone call at 2 am (I’d been asleep about 2 hours) that things were bad with my grandma. I got dressed, walked down only to find out she hadn’t been given her meds correctly and was actually wanting food. I had spent 9 hours alone with her tending to everything and some how the other adults couldn’t figure out how to manage the 12 hours I was suppose to be home resting. Getting back home an hour later I was pissed because I knew it was gonna take forever to get back to sleep and I’d have to be up and start my day all over again soon. Well I decided to break down and check my blood pressure today...

    159/110 - pulse 108

    I mean... come on. I’m exhausted, I barely sleep. Some days I can’t eat hardly anything, some days I could eat the paneling off the walls. I’m basically ready to fight all the time... and now my heart is literally a ticking time bomb. Fabulous! I have no idea what I’m gonna do... I’m taking the max of meds I can I think (I’ve added a little extra)...

    Saying I’m exhausted is a punishable offense. Saying I need a break is a sin. Saying that to wake her while she’s resting is not ok because it makes her uncomfortable and all is considered rude....

    One of three things is gonna happen:

    1) I’m gonna survive this and look back at how ridiculous me saying all this is. I mean I’m tired, feeling sick, just barely keeping it together... I literally almost cried twice today which is scared for everyone because it never happens.

    2) I’m gonna break and have a complete melt down. I guess if this happens I’ll end up away (like inpatient treatment) somewhere to try and reset... this scares me because I’m afraid I’ll never make it out honestly.

    3) I’ll have some physical issue with my blood pressure so high... maybe I should start taking medication to try and bring it down at least till this is over. I mean I can’t end up in the hospital right now.
     
  2. Chip

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    There's a 4th option.

    Set boundaries. You're an adult. If you're exhausted, you get to say "I'm exhausted. I can't do this. Someone else will have to." No matter what anyone else says, respond with "I hear what you are saying. And I need to take care of myself so I can continue to care for others. So I will not be doing this. Someone else will have to do it." And just basically keep repeating that mantra. If you don't do this, eventually your body will do it for you, and generally when that happens, it takes you a lot longer to heal.

    If someone tries to wake your grandmother, you can say "It's uncomfortable for her. Please put her needs before your own. If you do not, take a look at whether you're being selfish." If you get any response that you're being rude, you can respond with "I'm sorry you feel that way; however, I believe that it is much more rude to wake someone who is seriously ill and needs the rest. I stand by what I said."

    This is entirely within your control. You can choose how you respond to this situation. If you set and hold the boundaries, people will scream bloody murder, guilt, shame, and everything else. Let them. If you don't you are giving up your own autonomy for someone else's benefit, and that isn't healthy for you or for them. But if you set the boundary, eventually they will respect it.
     
  3. I'mStillStanding

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    Chip you know I’m working on it. I’m no longer spending 16 hours a day down here. I figure 12 is plenty. So if I don’t do my hour walk I go home right after dinner, if I do I stay a little bit to make up the hour I was away lol. I told my mom it’s not fair everyone else can say how tired they are but if I do it’s such an issue... she said that’s only something you are trying to make up... literally after she had rolled her eyes and made several rude comments. I laughed and said say what you won’t I will not let what I do around here or the fact that, like everyone els, is running on fumes to be dismissed anymore! I’m trying hard to stand up and be more assertive while being mindful all of our nerves are raw and all because of what’s happening.

    I don’t want to get to a point I am so angry there’s a big blow up... I also am concern it’s to a point my family is so use to how things are that there is gonna be such push back that it’s impossible to be an easy transition!

    As for my health issues, specifically blood pressure, I was able to get some medication from mom to try and get it come down... I’m not sure how I could get any better sleep with what’s happening...
     
  4. I'mStillStanding

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    Now... the thing about noting showing emotions is it includes frustration, anger, disappointment, etc. This is not good at the moment as there is only so much I can keep it and since the stress is overwhelming I really am unraveling! Thank god therapy is tomorrow...
     
    #124 I'mStillStanding, Apr 10, 2019
    Last edited: Apr 10, 2019
  5. Chip

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    That's great to hear. One of the big issues with dysfunctional/codependent family systems is that when one person starts getting a healthier perspective, it breaks the dysfunction. Think of it as a bunch of gears that are intermeshed and turning, but in a distorted and dysfunctional way. When one person (gear) starts functioning normally, what happens to the rest of the gears? They no longer mesh. Nothing works. So there is extremely strong pressure to force the gear (person) that is starting to function normally to go back to dysfunction. But going back to the old pattern serves no one.

    Sometimes it does take someone having a big blow-up to make it clear that the old, dysfunctional pattern is obsolete and will not ever work again. Sometimes it takes that "gear" withdrawing entirely for a while. It's never pleasant, and thus the resistance to change. And at the same time, as the person holds his ground, the system has to change because that gear is no longer going along with the dysfunctional way in which the unit works. So the system eventually changes, or at the very least, the healthy person is no longer part of the dysfunction.

    It is unlikely there will be an easy transition. You probably need to simply accept this.

    Yikes! If you are talking prescription blood pressure medicine, that's incredibly dangerous. The medicine was not prescribed for you, and the last thing you want to randomly fuck with is your heart and circulatory system. Please see a doctor immediately if you feel the need for medication, or alternatively, use a healthy coping strategy such as meditation. Randomly taking somebody else's blood pressure medication is incredibly dangerous.
     
  6. I'mStillStanding

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    The idea of this causes two thoughts.
    One: I wonder what it must be like to not have the pressure I’ve always had. I mean concerned someone is gonna see me do something and report back, worried my Headnovel post may cause too much controversy, being free to do what ever I wanted when I wanted how I wanted and not have to think... how am I gonna explain this if it comes up. My entire life has been filled with me wondering what if... what if I wear that and someone sees and tells mom, what if I’m seen going out there and it gets around, what if... I mean even after coming out it’s still a bit like that. I’m just not worried people will find out I’m gay, but I still feel this fear of the blow up when it’s brought up that I’ve done... what ever. So the idea of being away and not having to worry about any of that is very alluring. It would be interesting to be somewhere I didn’t have to be worried about who’s gonna see me and tell and the fight that’s gonna happen.
    Two: it makes me really sad. I’m one of those people who loves the connection. I love my family and getting together and having fun. I love game nights, and dinners, and going out for coffee just to spend some time. I really long for those relationships in my life... and I want that closeness with my mom and even a few of my other family members. The idea that it’s all or nothing’s is so sad...

    Chip... your honesty is great... but could you throw in a few rainbows and sparkle for us... lol I mean give a gay a little hope here hahahahaha

    It’s a medication I’ve taken before. I was prescribed at one time but came off of it. So it’s not just an out of the blue, off the wall one. It’s one I’m familiar with and know it works with my body. I hate taking medication and the fact that I’ve been having to take so much the last two weeks worries me. I am not happy that I’ve been taking Xanax and all like I have the last few days... that had helped with my blood pressure during panic attacks which was the only time it was really up. Now it’s just staying up... so I need it down a bit...

    I don’t really have the time or money to go to the doctor at the moment. I’m gonna see if this helps I’ll call my family doctor and talk with him about it (he won’t be happy I’ve started myself on medication I know but desperate times right) for sure in the next couple of days.
     
  7. Chip

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    I think you'll find that as you get over the hump of learning to love yourself more (which is already happening...) you'll find that the fear will dissipate. Just takes time.
    Usually it isn't all-or-nothing, at least not in the long term. What typically happens in the families where there's extreme dysfunction is the person who's doing the self-work has to impose boundaries, which sometimes leads to complete separation for a while... until the family figures out that they'd rather change than have no connection with the individual setting the boundaries. And that usually precipitates an openness to change. During that period, you have to really work on keeping the boundaries firm, and not allowing an iota of boundary-crossing, but once they realize it's permanent, they usually go along.

    Please do call. It isn't worth the risk.
     
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  8. Destin

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    Just going to jump in here and second the idea of getting your own medications. A lot of pills work more or less the same for everyone, like painkillers, but specialized ones like for blood pressure aren't like that at all and are based on the person's individual biochemistry. While it may seem to be working correctly, there's a rather high chance it could randomly start harming you in various ways if it trips up on something in your body it wasn't expecting to be there, including causing blood clots to form.
     
  9. I'mStillStanding

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    This is a medicine I’ve taken in the past and is one I have discussed taking with my doctor over the last year. My blood pressure is often triggered by anxiety when my heart starts racing and all. This blood pressure medicine actually helps the best with that. I’m careful with what I take :slight_smile: even when it’s not mine... that sounds awful lol
     
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  10. I'mStillStanding

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    So today was therapy. She didn’t push to far into my feelings because of what’s happening. She did give me a stern talking to about the fact we are not avoiding it forever! I told her about he first time I was in a room when someone passed and how many people I’ve been with who have died. She said that’s not really normal for someone who’s not in a profession dealing with it and definitely not someone so young (talking about those who passed between 12-17). I’m starting to think I sound crazy.... but no she asked about how I felt when I’m with family who pass... I really feel a sense of peace. I mean I watch them be sick and know the struggle they’ve had. So when they aren’t sick anymore it’s peaceful. It’s said because I know they are gone but I’m not falling apart like everyone else... I really do sound completely insane don’t I?

    Then we moved on to talking about you guys. The support I get here and how I’ve still been able to use this place as an outlet during this time... I even trashed @Chip a bit for being so hard on me hahahahaha I’m totally joking though I did share about your bit on gears and things may not work how I want it to. I normally like to reply to you guys directly and since this post was gonna do that I didn’t do it with the last comment Chip. But the conversation about the advice I get here lead into some very interesting areas. She asked what it was I wanted... I want space. You guys know this. But I also want to be close with my family emotionally and get to see them often (maybe once a month). I want respect and appreciation for what I do. I want to live my life how I want. If you don’t agree sorry, but keep it to yourself. We don’t have to argue about it... honestly there’s no point in discussing it. I’ll respect you by not doing things around you you find offensive, you respect me by not discussing things I do outside of your presence! I want to breathe...

    She agreed with you guys... made some similar comments as you have Chip as well as you @smurf. We discussed why I can’t set boundaries which I totally can and have. I’ve told mom my sex life is none of her business and it’s not something we will talk about. If she continued to be disrespectful about it then that would mean I’d be free to discuss it more openly in my argument and I know neither of us want that. She’s made off handed comments a few times since I laid down the law and I’ve countered with a nice little share that shut it up quick... it’s not happened often or for a while now. Don’t open a door if you don’t want to see what’s behind it!

    This was a very different session as she said well she had no idea I’d been able to be so direct with my mom or stick to a boundary like that. She asked why it’s not like that with everything. During the conversation I realized my anxiety and depression issues have been so crippling that it’s put in me in a situation where I’m scared to stand on my own financial. I mean the last time I did... I literally nearly died. And since when I’ve went back to work if I got sick at all I’d have horrible panic attacks because I’d immediately think ok this is it... I’m gonna end back up where I was. This was another moment of oh ok... so if... no when I get myself together and see I can stand alone I’ll be able to step away and have all the boundaries I want... it doesn’t seem so hopeless. Though it seems so far away, at least it’s there!
     
  11. I'mStillStanding

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    Just checking in. Things with my grandma are worse... which is odd because I don’t know how they keep getting worse.

    Today I decided to go through some old family albums... I love doing that and seeing old pictures of family. My grandparents looked good lol...

    Then it happened. I ran across a couple of pictures that had me and the last person who had been involved in the sexual abuse. It was weird because the pictures were from the time the abuse had just started and all... I’m talking big family stuff I’m looking at these pictures and not a single memory. Except of the stuff that happened between me and one this family member who really crossed the line.

    Honestly I don’t know how to feel about it. I was sending pics as I was flipping through to a friend. And when I came up on these I sent a couple. This friend knows about what happened and all... well I even sent a picture from a couple years after the abuse stuff ended and I had just started gaining weight and was in his wedding. I remember crying for days because I didn’t want to do it, and they wanted me to be the ring bearer... I was embarrassed because I was like old... I wasn’t a little kid and it didn’t make sense. I told my friend and he agreed it was weird (I was like 12) especially given the context of what had went down. Well I said... oh no one knew we had had sex but us....

    I about died... first off there is so much wrong with this because what went down wasn’t ok. But for me to just causally say oh yea no one knew we had sex... the 15 and 6 year old... like I wanted to rewind and take it back. I also want to know why I was so causal about saying it... honestly I’m a little freaked out at the moment with this because I’ve never said that at all and it’s just like I’m freaking out....
     
  12. smurf

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    I don't totally get what is happening, but I get the anxiety that must be creeping in.

    So, deep breaths.

    Take inventory of your body. Hows your heart beat? Are your muscles tense? Are you breathing?

    Get out of the chair and stretch. Do a plank for one minute and 5 push ups.

    Can you go for a walk? Do things that get your brain to stop racing. Feel what you are feeling, cry if you need to, but try to not let your mind race to "what does this mean?" or any other future talk. Stay here. Stay with whatever is that you are feeling.

    Sorry bud. All good feelings your way.
     
  13. I'mStillStanding

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    So my blood pressure is up... like way up. I can’t go for a walk right hey but should get some time alone in a couple hours. My grandma won’t rest at all... she’s talking literally about stuff that’s not happening and that I’m guess is from her past so it’s adding stress. I’m half a second from taking moms blood pressure meds again buts since it did cause it to drop to low this week and I almost fainted I’m trying to avoid that and I’m not sure the Xanax is going to be enough.

    I’ve never said we had sex. Ever... I’ve always said abuse stuff, or he crossed the line, or inappropriate, etc... I’ve just never actually said we had sex because I’ve never wanted to admit it, and no honestly I’ve tried to block out a lot of what we did. It’s been coming back and so I have a better handle on some do what happened, but this freaked me out. Also I don’t like thirds that I said what happened was sex in a a causal kinda way, because I was way to young to understand what was happening and I couldn’t consent. There’s just no good word to describe it and now that’s got me all jumbled... I can’t take anything else I know of but I’m gonna have to do something. My family doesn’t know I’m freaking out but I’m barely keeping it together.
     
  14. smurf

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    This is fairly common from my understanding.

    You are more ready to handle it (believe it or not) so you are allowing yourself to remember and speak it more. Its the first time so the shock is greater, but that will also go away.

    What can you do to get MOVING.

    Anxiety is pent up energy. You have to burn it.

    Can you do the planks? Push ups in some room? Bathroom? Deep breaths bud. This too shall pass. You are fine :slight_smile:
     
  15. I'mStillStanding

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    First off, I’m sorry for the delay. Not sure what happened as I check EC a lot. Literally got this notification after 1 AM and post was not showing up on thread even though it says it was posted.

    My sister came yesterday, which was a surprise. So I went on a short walk around our pond to just have some breathing time. I was able to pull it together... or push it back in may be better. I’m scared to let my self cry... with what is happening I’m scared I won’t be able to stop and someone may see. When all this is over, I’ll have some time to really let go...

    You are right though. I had been discussing it here and in therapy, remembering more and more details, even seeing his profile pop up as a suggestion on Headnovel. But once things took such a drastic turn with my grandma three weeks ago, I pumped the breaks. I wanted to focus on this. I guess the photos of me and him together at that time really just triggered it. It’s crazy the difference in my eyes and smile before it started and after... I mean it could be in my head but I see a difference.