Relationships, boundaries, responsibility

I’ve been meaning to write for a while. I’m in that space where I haven’t been posting on instagram either. There’s so much to say. And. I don’t know. Too much. It’s after midnight. I should be going to sleep. And I hate posting on these days because Friday is a kindness post and Sunday is a sunshine post. I want to keep it that way.

I want to wrote properly but will share a couple Instagram posts about responsibility. That’s really what I wanted to write about anyways. I was hoping that if I start writing about it here I’d be able to formulate my thoughts, my words, a lil bit more.

I’m sharing the posts in chronological order. I hope to be able to write more sometime as it’s through putting it down that I’ve begun to understand it. Maybe I’ll write another post (Haha for I’ll share them again for making it make sense to me).

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This morning I was journaling about responsibility. I made the second picture to make it clear that of course I have responsibilities. Although this is relevant to NY entire life I was referencing a specific childhood friend. I grew up responsible for F (friend). My life was giving to her what she needed, doing what she wanted, regardless of the detriment to me. Recently, as in the past month, I've let go of responsibility to sis. That brought up really clearly the responsibility I take for F. F calls and asks me for my help, and I'm unable to say no. I do what she asks. Because it's easy for me to do and why not. I resent it too because I don't have a choice. When I'm unable to she tells me not to worry. Um, hello. I don't need her to tell me not to worry. It's not my responsibility… Yesterday she called me and asked me to do something. I said no. I just said I'm sorry but I can't do it. There's a lot of guilt. It's a 5 minute job on the internet that is easy for me to do. She doesn't have internet access and with lockdown can't just go elsewhere to do it. Yet it's not kay responsibility. It. Is. Not. My. Responsibility. F is not my responsibility. I grew up being responsible for F. It was easier for the adults to allow me to take responsibility – even though it negatively impacted my life – because they either ignored it, or because I was taking the responsibility off them. Letting go of responsibility towards sis made me aware that I don't need to say yes to F. She expects it. I expect it. I resent it. And. It's not my responsibility. Is it really the right thing for me to say no? Not to give when I so easily can and it doesn't harm me in any which way? I'm not the 7 year old giving in to F at her expense. I'm not the 11 year old left on the sidelines because of F. I'm not the 18 year old going where I don't want to go with F. I'm not the 22 year old leaving when I want to stay with F. I'm not going to do what hurts me as it is. Or impacts me. I've learnt not to. This is easy stuff in my spare time. And I said no. I said no. Because I can say no. Because I just don't want to say yes. Is it the right thing? I don't know… … cont

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Dear E I'm proud of you E. I'm proud of you for saying no to F – yes, I'm proud. I'm proud even though you could so easily have helped her. I'm proud even though the no was purely for the sake of saying no. You're allowed to say no just because. You're allowed to say no to something you don't want to do. However easy it may be. I'm proud of you for putting yourself first. I'm proud of you for saying no to M yesterday. Even though she was disappointed. You put yourself first. You aren't creating an unhealthy dynamic. If you say yes when you don't want to you're creating an unhealthy relationship. You're allowed to say no. Your needs, even your wants, always come first. Your want comes before some else's need. Of course sometimes you can put their need first. But only if it's a choice. Only if you're choosing it. If you're putting their need first because you feel that you have to, you're ruining the relationship. That's why saying no to F was, is, important. Because you never feel like you have a choice. If you felt like you had a choice you wouldn't resent helping her. If it was a choice you would be happy to help. You've not been happy to help for you knew you had to. And E, you don't have to. You never have to do anything for anyone. You always come first. Once you've put yourself first, you can give to others. Once you can say no, you can say yes. And you can say yes to things that are hard for you to do, or that you'd rather not do. Because when it's a choice you can put someone else's needs before your wants, and be happy about it. I love you E. And I'm proud of you. I'm with you always. I'll always be with you. I'll always stay with you. Nothing you ever do can ever take me away from you. Love you E. Always and forever. E. #lettertomyself #journaling #journaltherapy #journalingismytherapy #responsibility #responsibilities #lettinggo #selfcare #selflove #selfhealers #selfhealer #selfhealing #innerchildhealing #innerchild #innerchildwork #soberliving #sobriety #addiction #addictionrecovery #recovery #adultchildrenofalcoholics #narcoticsanonymous #acoa #acarecovery #overdoserecovery #jewishmentalhealth #jews4mentalhealth #jewishgirl #jewishblogger

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And this is something I often feel.

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I never just wanted to be a part of the groups there were. I'd feel left out. Know I wasn't worth it. That there was something wrong with me that those people seemingly struggling with the same as me, who I was there for, could be there for each other, but not for me. The past few months have shown me something. On my blog I've met some new people. People I didn't know before. People who I did know but never identified with. People who took the time to respond to what I wrote. People who were there… I've learnt who my people are, and it's not whom I would have expected at all. Some of these people were those who I've never read anything of theirs before. And plenty of people I'd been there for weren't there. Just weren't. Creating your own community. I've always been a misfit. I've always been an anomaly. My friends in life are very different to each other. Although they're friends with each other. This tells you who I am! If you're a friend of mine you feel close to all my friends and likely become real friends with them too. It's just how I work…. my friends become friends. So. My people. It's weird to say that because I really don't turn to others. The people I like and appreciate, I hope they know I do. I'm learning to. And are here I am a bit. Beginning to. Definitely more than I ever did. What I was saying was that people. For people in my life I can give a prototype but honestly there is none. Genuineness is the one thing that draws me to everyone. And once I count you as a friend, I'll be your friend forever and ever amen unless you do a lot to ruin it, and even then I'll really care about you. Who are your people? Who are you grateful for? #mentalhealthjourney #mentalhealthmatters #mentalhealth #mentalhealthrecovery #relationships #buildingrelationships #navigatingrelationships #understandingrelationships #innerchildhealing #innerchild #innerwisdom #innerconsciousness #selfhealing #ptsd #cptsdwarrior #cptsdrecovery #attachmenttrauma #bpdwarrior #anxietywarrior #socialanxiety #eatingdisorderwarrior #adultchildrenofalcoholics #acoa #trustyourself #innerwisdom #selfcare #selflove #mindfulness #jewishmentalhealth #jews4mentalhealth

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Random.

Today was a calmer day. Used less cocodamol. Swept a bit the mess I made last night with what I did. Ate too much (for what I feel I should eat. Honestly I’m also grateful I ate more than I wanted to). Not sure how come I’ve used less but I did. Tried to get through to my GP but didn’t manage to – he wasn’t in. I told the secretary I think it’s negligent of him. She didn’t disagree with me (she was drained by my persistence, I think I drove her a bit mad, and there wasn’t anything she could even do but I’m glad she understood me at the end and agreed with me). Even though it’s nearly 3am and I should be sleeping. I’m grateful I didn’t freak out at all today. I’m grateful for all of you who’ve been here – I didn’t expect it and really appreciate it. I’m grateful for E’s email today checking up on me. I hadn’t even told her about last night- she can’t handle me telling her what I’m doing to myself and knowing there is nothing she can do. Grateful for TCs minute phone call to say hi. Tried to find people in ACA who have real recovery, not just newcomers. Going to look on instagram tomorrow. Hoping it’s not as hot. Heat exacerbates dizziness. As does not enough food. I rather not be dizzy. Looking forward to course starting Thursday. Theoretically it’s tomorrow.

Today had responsibility given to me, that I felt I had to take, that wasn’t mine. Is in no way mine. Took 3 hours of my time. It’s a perfect example to bring to someone and ask them what exactly my responsibility is. There are 2 people I would ask to discuss it with. Really I’d ask them if they knew who I could and hope they’d say themselves. But both of them are people I need advice from about my life. Who after I speak to my GP – is that ever going to happen – I want to run what he says by them and ask them for their advice. So I don’t want to use them now as I won’t be able to then. Actually that is even factual not just about me thinking I’m using them.

Love, light and glitter

Can I put myself first?

I’ve written about this before, I think.

A friend who is struggling wants a lift today. It would take 2 – 3 hours of my time. I have the time. This morning was tough and I didn’t have the headspace. I knew I didn’t have the headspace. As a side note I just curled up in bed, and was wondering the line between letting yourself be and wallowing. I’d freaked out on the phone, and wanted to just stay in bed. I knew I could get up if I wanted and do stuff but chose to stay in bed.

I didn’t have the headspace for her when I was in that headspace myself. I know I don’t really have the headspace just now either. Last night when I was with her it was okay, I was just completely drained. I told her that I don’t have the headspace. If I can later I will. I didn’t have the headspace so I said no.

I guess anyone who has followed this blog will know just how major it is for me to put myself first. To say no. Although I’m questioning if I’m really right to put myself first, I’ve put myself first and don’t feel guilty for it. I don’t feel responsible to help her do what she needs to. If I can, I can, if I can’t, I can’t. It’s not that I can’t, for in reality I can, but I’ve put myself first. And it’s not someone for whom I have to out myself second for.

I forgot I was writing this. But I think I put it down as it is. I don’t know if I’ll take her today. I doubt it. And however much I doubt myself for choosing not to, I know I can put myself first. I know I’m allowed to, and am doing so.

Love, light, and glitter

Random thoughts

I don’t know if I should write this or not. But it’s probably better to than thinking about it.

Just a lot of thoughts coming together to create a picture.

Yesterday I was telling my sister that my parents should have known I was physically sensitive. I didn’t know this until a couple weeks ago when my mother was telling someone that when I was a baby she took me to the hospital because of a rash. Which turned out to be from a cream (designed for babies). I never knew until now that she’d always had factual proof that I was sensitive.

Now I was thinking about places. How when there is a lack of air concentration I get dizzy. The problem I have is that I don’t notice the gradual onset. I don’t notice the dizziness until it’s extreme – until I’m shaky, light headed and sweaty. I’ve learned from experience that it has to do with the air concentration. I know some places that bring it on. Some shops I know must have different pairs because I get dizzy there and not in other indoor closed places.

I don’t notice anything physically until it’s extreme. The other examples I wouldn’t really write here. It’s also partly why I don’t really know what goes on in my body emotionally. I don’t experience emotions as it is, but you’d think I’d see it in my body. I’m slowly learning to, but the thing is that I don’t recognise anything.

When I saw my GP about a year ago maybe. He took my blood pressure/pulse and then he asked me if I was dizzy at all. Uh, no. I didn’t recognise any dizziness. Because I wasn’t blacking at all. My vision wasn’t blurring. I wasn’t shaky or lightheaded. There was no really visible physical clue, and if it’s not really visible, how would I know it? I’ve learned to ignore anything physical. I had to.

When I was younger my father would flick my cheek. It was his way of demonstrating love. I asked him repeatedly – almost every single time I think – not to. Because it hurt. He just did it. He was trying to show his love. But he wasn’t doing that. Reminds me actually how he always said my kisses were really light and gentle. To me they weren’t. With hindsight I can see that what to me was giving a real kiss would be really gentle to another person.

One of my sisters told me one of the reasons she found it really tough with me was because of my physical sensitivity. When she’d bump into me I’d get really upset at her hurting me. When she didn’t do anything.

Everyone always told me I was just being sensitive. That what I was saying wasn’t true. I learned to believe them. In some ways I still believe them. Although now I know logically I’m not just being sensitive.

The last time my sister – a different one – bumped into me and was surprised at how strongly I reacted, I later showed her the bruise she’d left. She hadn’t done anything wrong. I wasn’t at all upset with her. I just wanted her to see that I wasn’t overreacting. When I carry heavy bags i get Mark’s, which I’ve learned are the blood capillaries broken from carrying things too heavy. It might not be too heavy for most people. For me it is.

For some reason my friends just accept and know it. It’s a non issue with them. If we go shopping my friends will most likely take the bags even if I protest. They’ll open the bottles. It’s just a non issue. Whereas with my family it is an issue. They’ll be upset if I don’t carry more than I can (I ended up having everything drop all over the other day because I was trying to bring in what I couldn’t). They’re not being ‘wrong’. They’re just believing all that they’ve always known. That I’m ‘just being sensitive’. Like sensitivity isn’t real. Because sensitivity isn’t real, is it?


I just answered the phone and said this to a friend. She said not they should’ve known, they could’ve known. And yes, whatever else.

When I was 20 E was the first person to tell me that boundaries can exist. Should exist. That you need to listen to the other. I’m surprised I recall her email. She wrote that if her 3 year old grandchild would tell her the bath was too hot she would add cold water to it. She was explaining that she would listen. That one should listen. I’m surprised I recall it. But I guess it makes sense I do. I definitely didn’t expect her to say that she’d act on it. I’d have thought she’d say no it isn’t. Or even it just feels too hot and you’ll get used to it. Or something like that. But no. She would listen. And act on it.

She said that she would knock on her child/grandchilds door, and if they asked her not to come in she wouldn’t. It took me until I was 22 to learn that my thinking things weren’t okay was because they weren’t okay. Not because I was just being sensitive. That people should respect my boundaries.

Hey, off tangent thought. I’m okay with touch from my friends. I’m not okay with touch from some people. It used to be an issue, that I wasn’t okay with touch. I think it’s that, I’m not okay with people who don’t respect my boundaries touching me.

More than I was hurt by the lack of boundaries, I was hurt by being told it was my issue. I always knew that what my mother did or said wasn’t healthy – she’s changed a lot so I feel bad writing this. My father telling me every time I went to him that I was just being sensitive or some variation of that, taught me not to trust myself. Taught me that I’m just being sensitive. That’s also why it took me until I was 22 to know that I’m allowed to have boundaries. That it’s not okay for someone to get upset with me when I’ve asked them not to enter. That it’s not okay to look for things in your adult child’s bag, no matter if what you want is innocent. You can’t go somewhere without asking. I never looked at my mother as a barometer. For anything and everything was always ‘not’. Whatever I said either wasn’t so or was me just being sensitive.

My mother isn’t a bad person. She was brought up by survivors and is learning only now to change the patterns she was raised with. It was easier for her to live in denial of what was going on (how do you face your special needs daughter saying she’s going to kill herself and it’s the families fault? How do you deal with your child killing herself albeit not knowing the risks of what they’re doing because they’re 14? How do you deal with the sibling rivalry that developed into so much more? Etc). She’s learning and been changing the past 5 years.

I looked at my father as the barometer. Because however much denial he lived in, he was definitely in a healthier place. I see now that it’s a dynamic and both my parents are imperfectly perfect. As a kid I always knew that I could approach my father, not my mother. Except that I couldn’t approach him. For instead of helping me deal with anything I asked him advice about he said I’m just being sensitive and it’s my issue. Which I believed. Because it’s my father who was talking. My father who I always idealised.

One of my sisters say it isn’t fair how we all put my mother in the wrong and my father in the right when really they’re both human. I’m not sure that she is right, because, however much I don’t trust my instincts and intuition today, I trust my child knowledge. The younger E knew that my father could be approached. The younger E who hadn’t yet learned that expressing herself is wrong and whatever she says is anyways untrue, knew that her father held the answers. Not because she looked at her father as big and strong but because she knew that her father was healthier.


Whatever. I’m not sure if I should post this. At least it’s not all just in my head. And I’m not feeling as resentful and upset as I started off before putting it down.

The why and wherefore make no difference. Yes it helps to understand why I don’t trust myself (I’ve known it for a long time now). Yes, it helps to know why I struggle with boundaries. The why doesn’t change what is today. Resentment only hurts me. Writing about it helps because I’m expressing it so it’s no longer in my head.

And the reality of today is the reality of today. I don’t trust myself. I’m learning to. I don’t trust my knowledge or my intuition. I’m learning to. Surprisingly others trust my intuition about them, believe I know way more than I do ‘because they know me’. They trust the knowledge I don’t believe is true. I don’t know what I feel pretty much ever. Though the further away it is from me, the more I can feel it. And the more I tune in and allow myself to experience whatever is going on, the more I am experiencing it. The more present I am staying with myself. (Which is how I’m aware that I’m so much on edge. Either I never was on edge, or I just didn’t live with myself). I’m not always present. I’m more and more present both in the world and with myself. I’m not aware of the physical messages my body sends me. I am aware. I’m tuning in and noticing things I wouldn’t have in the past. Like a knee twinge so stop holding myself the way I am. When in the past I wouldn’t have.

The why may give context for myself. The why doesn’t take away my responsibility today. That my reality today is my reality to deal with. The only person holding onto resentment hurts is myself. And, mostly, this is something I can let go of, and for the most part (taking specifically about this) have. Understanding my context helps me understand theirs. Doesn’t take away others responsibilities, but the responsibility isn’t mine.

This is more than long enough. And wasn’t actually what I planned on writing.

This really is 3 different posts. But because I’m writing it for me, (posting because I want a record of it, for now anyways I do) and this isn’t really the topic of my blog, so keeping it as is.

Am I to blame?

Blaming. It’s always easier to blame oneself or another. Blaming gives a feeling of control so that if I can attribute a to x then I’m in control.

I’m dizzy. I’m blaming, or was, myself for it. I was dizzy and had already run the bath. I thought that maybe I shouldn’t have a bath and then decided that I had already run it and planned on coating myself with Dead Sea mud and should just. I’ve had baths often recently and it’s always been okay. So I decided to have a bath.

That was a bad idea. It was okay when I was having the bath. Getting up I was dizzy. I sat on the floor of the bathroom leaning against the bathtub for a while. Went back in the shower to clean.myself up when I couldn’t really but wasn’t going to spin any longer. And yes, I’m still dizzy. Even though it took me half an hour to put pjs on. I’m in bed now and still slightly dizzy.

It’s easy to say I was stupid. Which I was doing earlier. I’m not stupid. I made a legitimate mistake. Saying I’m stupid and shouldn’t have done that puts the responsibility for the dizziness on me. And gives me some feeling of control. When, it isn’t my fault. This dizziness used to be constant and I’m so grateful it isn’t. There was a time I didn’t have baths for I wouldn’t risk the dizziness getting up in a bath. I haven’t had to do that in a while and although I could have chosen not to I didn’t know it would make me spin so much, and that’s okay.

Blaming is easy. Blaming is way easier than realising this is just the reality with no cause. This just is, and all there is, is accepting it, being grateful for the good, and moving on.

I find blaming myself easier. For everything. My natural response – learned response – is guilt, blame, and taking responsibility for everyone (but myself). Blame is easier. And it’s not the way I want to live my life. It’s not the way I’m choosing to live my life. I’m choosing another way. The way of love. And acceptance.

Random aside. I haven’t seen some bloggers I follows posts in a long time. I don’t think it’s just that they haven’t posted – so many haven’t posted?? – so until I figure it out, I’m thinking of you all and sending sunshine, sparkles, love, light, and of course some glitter…

Looking back over 2019. 2020 – well, here we are.

A year ago Simon wrote a letter to himself in a years time, and I copied the idea (where’s this years letter Si?). I just read the letter I wrote to myself to be read in 2020, and my plan for the past year. It makes me both nostalgic, and appreciate what is right now.


A year ago I wrote what I wanted the year to be about.

It’s the start of an entirely new year. A year I get to choose. I have the choices to make. The responsibility is mine. Looking back I see how often I refused to take responsibility. I wouldn’t say refused as much as didn’t. Wasn’t aware that I could. Seeing it gives me the choice. To take responsibility for my life. To own what is mine. The choices that I make. The actions I take. The decisions. That are mine to own. I used to wish some fairy would just come in and wave their magic wand and take over my life for me. I don’t any longer. I’m grateful. Grateful that my life is mine to live. That my mistakes are mine to own.

Reasons to LIve 149

It’s nice to see. To see that I am taking the responsibility I wanted to a year ago. To see the change. To see how my plan for the year – to own my life – materialised. I’ve taken, am taking, responsibility for my life. I can’t say I always take the responsibility I want to. More like, I push off things I want to do, but I am doing this. I’m not doing all I think taking responsibility means. I’m doing a lot more of it (A1, A10 as Em and Skinny Hobbit so kindly pointed out last night).


A year ago I wrote a letter to myself, to be read this year. The shortened version reads

Looking back at the year you’ll probably see lotsa changes, and lotsa things that are still the same. I wonder where you’ll be in a years time…. I wonder if you’ll have studied further. I wonder if you’ll have changed your views on dating. I wonder whether you’ve worked through what you believe. I wonder if you’re teaching….

It’s strange to read this letter. I want you to realise how much is different. You’ve set your plan for the year out. You wrote about it in the post about responsibility and freedom. Eh, looks like it’s titled ‘Taking ownership of my life’. Yup, take ownership of your life. You are doing that. I’m guessing you’ve been doing that a lot more in the past year than you ever have. Remember jokingly asked R’ R if he’d take over, with the grain of truth there? I’m glad you can take control. I’m glad you can take responsibility. I’m glad you want to. I wonder what it’ll be like for you.

As with everything, it’s a new year. A year has gone by. A year of hope. A year of dreams. A year of aspirations. A year of laughter. A year. A year has gone by. A year seems like such a long time. You’ll be 25 when you’re reading this. 25 seems so young. Yet so much older than 24. Age is meaningless. …you’ll be connecting to the you of a year ago who had no clue what to write to herself for a years time.

I love you E. If there’s one thing I hope you’ve learned during this year it’s that you’re not guilty. And you’re deserving. Both. I know that they’re flip sides of the same coin, separate yet so similar. If there’s another thing I hope you’ve learned it’s that whatever happens you really do have your greatest ally – yourself – at your side. Trust your intuition! Don’t feel guilty for it. Just be you. For you’re the most fantastic, amazing person I’ve ever met. Just because you’re you. As you always tell others, you don’t have to do anything to be worthy, you just ARE. Asides that you’re part of the infinite, so you must be infinity itself. Whatever happens E, whatever you’ve done this year, whatever you haven’t done, whatever you’re grateful for, whatever you hate, whatever you love, whatever you want to change, whatever you want to throw away, regardless of anything E, you’re always worth it, and you’ll always have your own best friend – yourself – with you….. I hope that’s another thing that’s different now a year later. I hope that you really do love yourself. Feel safe with yourself. Believe in yourself. I hope that the life you’re living is a life beyond your wildest dreams. Loving life doesn’t mean it’ll be easy. It means it’ll be real, you’ll be present for it, and that you’re loving the ride – the ups, the downs, the plateaus, the cliff jumps, the rocks, the paragliding. You’re awesome E! Am I beginning to repeat myself and get boring already?

pART OF THE LETTER TO MYSELF

It was, is, nice to read it. I appreciate seeing what I wrote. Hearing this again. A lot of what I wrote that I want to be different, it is different. It’s not completely different. It’s partially. I wanted to get to B, instead, I’m on the way there and not where I was. It’s nice to actually see it in written form. I appreciate it especially now when I’m busy messing my life up and it feels a bit like – what was it all worth? For it was worth it. During the last year I’ve taken responsibility. I’ve built relationships. I’m okay with touch.

I wrote that I hope I feel safe with myself, love myself and believe in myself. I don’t. But I feel safer with myself. I love myself more than I did. I believe in myself more than I did. I know, logically, that I’m worth it. I wanted to work through what I believe. A year ago I was hoping to be a lot farther on. To know fully what I believe. I don’t know fully. I know a lot more than I knew a year ago. I’ve separated some of what I hate about the culture I grew up in, from actual Judaism. I know that they’re 2 different things. That the culture and people aren’t what judaism is about, and I shouldn’t throw the baby out with the bathwater. I think that’s a saying or something.

I think the first sentence I wrote is the truest. That looking back over the past year I can see a lot of change, and there are a lot of things that are still the same. I see change with boundaries I’m able to keep and respect. I see it the same with boundaries too, how I’ve crossed my own boundaries with someone and thereby crossed theirs, and I’m not sure how to have a relationship with them without wrecking it. I see change in the responsibility I’m taking. I see how it’s the same that I don’t want to take it. I see change in how I don’t feel the guilt for living, existing, and being that I used to. It’s the same in that I don’t really know I’m deserving of it (life). I see a lot of change. And a lot that is still the same. I’m glad to see this. To see that it isn’t all the same.

I like that you’re writing to yourself in a years time for it means that you actually envision yourself to be here in a year. You actually plan on being alive for 2020. 

I didn’t. I didn’t really plan on being alive for 2020. Now, I do. I do plan on being alive for 2020. I want to be here. This isn’t about what I want for 2020. It’s more about seeing what was. What I want? That’s another topic entirely. I’ve not reflected on what I want yet this year, it’s not something I’ve been able to do, and, that’s okay. For the moment it’s about getting through the moment and planning how to move past today’s reality and needs.

I’m grateful. I’m grateful for the past year. I’m grateful I get to see what is different. I’m grateful that where there never used to be choice, there is choice now. I’m grateful that I can see the possibility of another life, a life without messing my life up. I’m grateful for all that was, and that I can see that it isn’t the same.

Thank you to all of you who’ve been here with me this past year – I hope you know how much I appreciate it.

So long as there’s life, there’s hope.

Love, light and glitter

Thinking about using.

Why did I use?

To destroy myself. I had to get rid of myself and the way to do so was through playing with the edge.

Why did I escape?

Because of the guilt. I escaped with everything and anything. A lot innocuous. I never lived in the world. I was never present. Coz of the guilt for existing. The guilt for being. The knowledge that by living I hurt others. That by living I made others suicidal. By living I’m a threat to others.

What have I learned about the guilt/destruction since stopping using?
Guilt.

I’m not guilty for existing. I still believe I am. More and more there are parts of me that know I’m not. I’ve learned that it’s others issues. I learned that I knew I was guilty. Until I stopped using i never knew that I was guilty. It was only stopping that let me see it. Not stopping. Stopping one thing and going to something more sdestructive. That’s what I did until I was playing with death.

Guilt. I knew I was guilty for thinking. I knew I was guilty for feeling. I knew I was guilty for speaking. I knew I was guilty for existing.

I know. I know no one intentionally taught that to me. I know people who lived through hell (unlike my life which was a relatively happy place) and their belief wasn’t guilt. For honestly there was/is no guilt necessary. I know I’m not responsible. (some part of me knows) I know it’s not my issue. I’m learning to let go of all the responsibility for everyones lives that I always carried, and to, begin to, take responsibility for myself – something I never, ever did.

Destruction

I’ve learned that the need for destruction was an act of love on my part. I wanted to give myself what I deserved. I wasn’t trying to kill myself, but destroy myself. Stopping using taught me that. Stopping self harming taught me that. For then I knew why I wanted to.


I’m the person who can give myself what I need. Something I’ve been learning for a while. All the letters I have written to myself. Writing to myself has helped me to access a part of me that I never knew existed. I had never known I was capable of being so kind, gentle and compassionate with and to myself – the person I hate, abhorred, despised most in the world. The only being I really hated. Myself. I could honour myself. Show myself love.


What have I learned since I’ve stopped using?

Once I stopped using, cocodamol was the last thing I turned to. I stopped escaping. The destruction was still there, still played a role in my life (self harm, eating disordered behaviour if not full blown) but I didn’t escape.

  • I learned to acknowledge what I want.
  • I learned to accept what I want.
  • I learned that most people I turn to will let me down
  • I learned to be present. I first learned I wasn’t present by being present. Being present in the world is one of the biggest things I’ve gained. I’m actually here. It’s using this thought that helps me understand last night – I didn’t feel present. Being here. I chose not to tune out. I can’t always choose not to.
  • I’ve learned how far I still have to go (that’s a diff point). I’ve sen how fair I’ve come. Being present means I can be there. I can actually be there. Without wondering if I exist or am just an illusion.
  • I’ve learned, begun learning, to tune into my body. More like, my body sometimes feels safe enough to give me a message. I only get messages of constriction – the not breathing, chest hurting that can spread everywhere (sometimes a pit in the stomach).
  • I’ve learned to accept what I want to do to myself. Some of what I want to do is too gruesome for me to think about without freaking – unless I’m wanting it now, in which case I let myself want it.
  • I’ve learned that there is a pause. There is a pause that never used to exist. Between what I want and what I do. Because I was so not not present I never knew what I wanted to do until I was in the middle of doing it. Now there is some awareness. A thought. Knowledge.
  • I’ve learned there is choice.
  • I’ve learned that I like touch even if I can’t let others touch me.
  • I’ve begun learning that there is such a thing as feelings and emotions even if I can’t access either.
  • I’ve learned a lot about myself. I’ve seen how I can’t handle some things and I can others.
  • I’ve learned that I’m way stronger and more courageous than I believe.
  • I’ve learned that I’ve social anxiety.
  • I’ve learned how to ground myself.
  • I’ve learned that I know. I know.
  • I’ve learned that I exist. I exist as a person. I’m allowed to want. I still don’t know what I want. I’ve learned I can want though.
  • I’ve learned that life is a journey of learning. A journey that maybe it’ll be okay to exist for.

I’ve learned. I’ve learned. I can go on and on.

I’ve learned and still learn so much. Every time I want to use or self harm I learn something new about myself. I see – if it’s possible to – why I want what I want.. Which is how I learn what I need.

I don’t know why I want to use so much now. I know it’s not the need for destruction. I know it’s not the escape. It’s a need. A need for – ? I can’t face it now.

If I use. I never will face what the need is or know why I need it. If I don’t use I have that chance. Of learning something new about myself.


My period really does hurt. Not that I feel it as I’m writing this. I don’t know that I won’t use at all over the next week. I don’t know that I won’t use. And, something I’m forgetting, I don’t have a week ahead of me. I only have the moment I’m living. It could be one of those moments I’ll choose to use. My choice now doesn’t have to be based on a choice I’m not yet facing.

One thing that really helps me is grounding myself in the present. I know I said I’m so grateful to be present, yet often enough, I’m not realy present.

I’m tired. I want to cry. I want to use. In some ways I do want destruction, but it’s not the same need it was. I want to self harm. It’s not the same. I don’t understand it. I don’t need to.

I don’t know if I can or can’t do it. I don’t know if I will or won’t get there. I do know that as I said I don’t need to base my choices in the present on the outcomes of a future that doesn’t yet exist. Every moment is a new moment. Even if it all feels the same. Which is doesn’t. For I’m flipping constantly. Between wanting to take a couple of cocodamol – it’s just so, so present and real, and a need – and being okay as I am in the moment. No moment is ever the same. And I have no idea what will or won’t be. Which is as it’s meant to be. I’m not committing to anything. I don’t want to get there. I don’t want to face why I so don’t want to. I want to fail. I want to end up using. I’m allowed to want that. And I can focus on what else I want. I want to be okay. I want to stay okay. I want to keep all I’ve learned and keep learning and taking new steps. The duality. Which can and does exist. Just is. As I. Just am.

Make a life for yourself.

I start in the middle of sentences. I’m teaching my students to start at the beginning, yet it’s something I don’t do.

I had a plan for this post. Then another plan. Now another plan. So I’ve no clue yet which of the three I’ll write about.

Last night I was on the phone to someone. She told me that the message she wishes she could give me is to make a life for myself. That I need to make a life for myself. That I’m in torn between wanting to make a life for myself and respect for my father. Well, I’d actually tried to explain that to her (I wrote some of it here) but I could see she hadn’t understood what I’d said. At the end of the conversation she actually did see it – though not from what I’d said. Well, duh.

Make a life for myself. What does that even mean?

I don’t know what I want my life to look like. It was this person I spoke to last night who did energy work a while back on believing that there could be a future for me. Which, actually shifted. I’ve begun to believe that there could be a future. I just can’t figure out what on earth this future is meant to look like.

I was talking to a friend earlier and explaining it to her. That my life never could be about me, it always had to be about others. There are 2 people in particular. The issues with one, I’ve worked through pretty much. I don’t feel the same guilt for living as I used to. I see that in the lack of suicidality. I think the main reason I was suicidal was coz’ I couldn’t live because I’m guilty for being alive. I was explaining to someone earlier how by living I’m taking away from other people. And it’s true. By living I’m hurting people. It’s their issue. Not mine. I know that now. I’ve finally realised that it’s not my issue that others are hurt by my very existence. That my existence challenges others existence and being. It’s theirs. Not mine. I’m trying to disentangle myself from it. I can’t. I can’t just disconnect. I have in minute ways. I’m sometimes able to set boundaries with this person. I’m able to sometimes stand my ground. I just don’t keep in touch with this person although I love this person very much, because I can’t handle the connection. Not until either this person is healthier – enough that my existence isn’t a threat. Or that I can actually disconnect enough not to be drawn in even when in contact – without the contact it has this much of an effect on me. The effect with contact would be multiplied by a thousand.

Make a life for yourself. I know I’ve said it on here before. I couldn’t want anything ever. I’m learning that I can want. I’m learning that I can want and stand my ground. I’m often being selfish. Not doing things just because I don’t want to. Going to the other extreme. There’s a balance, I know. A balance I hope to one day achieve. It was actually written really poignantly in one of the letters I wrote to myself. A balance of being able to give in a way that instead of taking away from my identify, giving is my identity. Giving can be something I choose to do instead of something I have to do. So long as it’s something I have to do, it’s not healthy for me. When it’s something I choose to do, it’s healthy.

I know that I can get to a place where giving is healthy. Sometimes I just don’t say yes, because I can’t be bothered. And it’s okay. It’s a good thing. It’s going to the other extreme, just saying no. But it’s important in building a balance. I do give, too. I’ve built a relationship with my mother. With my mother who taught me that it’s not safe to feel. With my mother who lived in denial about everything her entire life. With my mother who hurt me. With my mother who loved me. With my mother who did her best and taught me that it’s not safe to exist. With my mother who believes her children are there for her sake. I’ve built a relationship with her. I give to her. I talk to her about inconsequential things. I spend time with her. I give to her. I did it for her sake. Now I’m happy with it for my sake. Now that I’ve a relationship with her – on my terms – it’s good for me, too.

Make for yourself a life.

I don’t know how to do that. It’s a very easy thing to say. Make for yourself a life. It’s very hard to believe. That I’m allowed to. Make a life for myself. That I’m allowed to. That I’m able to. Even that I deserve to. I don’t believe it now. It doesn’t matter if I don’t believe it. I can still try to do it. Not that I know how so not that it’s relevant. But it is relevant. I’m dissing it because it’s overwhelming to me. Yet the words will play over in my head.

Something else she said to me was to ‘put it out there’. To put it out there and see what happens. She suggested moving. Moving away so that not at home, not living with others where I can’t learn who I am for fear of hurting them. It isn’t practical in any sense for a multitude of reasons. It’s not that I wouldn’t do it. I couldn’t. If someone were to see to it all for me and hand it to me on a platter it would be a different story. Now is not the time in my life to focus my energy on that. She agreed with me. And told me to put it out there. Let it be a possibility and if it were meant to happen, it could and would. I can’t – and won’t – do anything for it. It doesn’t mean it wouldn’t happen. Asides that her reasons for moving out were primarily about the person I mentioned above, who doesn’t actually live in the same place as I and who I’ve very little contact with. So moving wouldn’t disentangle me from her anymore.

Make a life for yourself.

I’ve gotta believe it’s possible. I think I do believe it’s possible. Even though I don’t see how.

She also gave me the name of someone to look up and call. I’m scared to. I’ve no clue what to say. (Edit: Who I just called and she said she isn’t able to be of any help. It’s a lot easier if I just don’t try.)

Who comes first?

Who comes first? I wonder.

Last night, actually 2 days ago, AG texted me that she’d love to go out. AG is someone I was talking about once on here, someone who will ask me to be there when she needs me. Who I will give my time to. The last time I went out with her was less than 2 weeks ago. We were out for 4 hours, she told me enough for me to know that something major had been going on in her life (she was way more free now though, from the sense I got), but she didn’t tell me what. I told her that it’s my issue if it fazes me. She wanted me to know but didn’t want to tell me.

Either way, on Sunday she texted me that she wants to go out. Which means a lot, for it’s not like her to want to go out with me if she just did. I don’t recall why Sunday didn’t work, I told her I could any day this week. Somehow she didn’t understand the message. I told her I could go out yesterday, including the entire evening. She only texted me at 9pm. Explaining why she hadn’t messaged me earlier to arrange a time and asking me if I could help her to tell me what the ‘it’ was all about for she really wanted to talk about it. I called her and told her I’m free tonight (Tuesday). She wanted to come over then, and I told her I’d fall asleep on her. I was exhausted.

That’s the background.

In bed I was thinking, wondering. If I did the right thing. I went to bed because I wanted to, knowing she really wanted to speak to me, and has no one else that she will speak to her. Knowing that if she was reaching out she needed me. I did tell her when I was available, and yes 9.30 is too late for me (it was already half past then) and yes I was exhausted, but was it really the right thing? I thought about if M or S would have asked me to be there for them. I would have been there. It wouldn’t have mattered that I was exhausted. I would have been there for them. If I could’ve done it for M or S I would’ve. So AG isn’t a friend as such. I don’t owe anything to her. So what? I went to bed knowing she wanted to talk to me – I think I only realised after I put down how much she needed it (so I texted her again asking if she wanted to go out, or come over in general and that I’ll try. She didn’t reply. If she had I would’ve asked if half an hour would be any help). No matter. I could’ve offered her to come over – I was too tired to drive or go out. I could’ve been there for her. I wasn’t because I decided that I came first. But, did I really?

Did I come first? Do I? I’m really not sure that I did the right thing and I’m wondering what I would do again. Not so much what I WOULD do in the same situation, but what I SHOULD do.

It’s way too weighted for me to work out on my own, for the backhistory to the question is my attitude in the past, based on my beliefs. I’m writing out letters to myself. The letter I was writing out yesterday was this one
You are not guilty. One of the things I’ve grown up with is guilt for living. Guilt for being. One of the principles underlying my life has always been that I can’t exist for myself, I have to exist for others, what I want is irrelevant (part of why I’ve so little idea now what I ever want, for I was never allowed to want). Another thing I’ve grown up with is shouldering responsibility that is absolutely not mine (and thereby not being able to take on the responsibility that is). It’s taken a really long time, and loads of repetition and patience of others – the same answer every single time I asked whether I should do something that would be detrimental for me for another who wanted it, that I shouldn’t do it, that I came first. I began acting on that – the motto that I come first – even though I knew it was wrong. Even though it was so completely wrong. I went, and sometimes live by, the other extreme. Not doing things for others that I could do just because I don’t want to (it’s not bad for me, and I could do it but I don’t want to).

The backhistory of this is that I wonder how much of this wondering what the right thing to do was is the guilt I would always feel at not giving the other what they want. I don’t know if I feel guilty per se now. I don’t think I do. I think I just wonder. Because sometimes in life the right thing is the thing that isn’t great for you. I’m thinking of when I called S over and asked her to throw away the cocodamol I had on my desk. Which she did. Calling her, I knew I was asking her to do something that wasn’t good for her. Something she’d be able to handle, but that wasn’t good for her, and therefore not good for our relationship either. I did it anyways. She did it anyways. Because in the situation, weighing it up, it was better that I asked her to do it and that she did it for me (there is no question in my mind that if she hadn’t thrown those away and borrowed all the rest I have for the next couple of nights that I would’ve used). Sometimes the right thing isn’t necessarily the best thing. If she said she came first then, it would have been the wrong thing. In general in life, my health has to come first. My well being has to come first. In general in life, I’m living that with the wider world, I still struggle a lot with it with my family and live by either extreme often enough.

AG isn’t in general. She was someone who asked me to be there for her. Who had no one else to ask, no one else that she would speak to in the way she wanted to speak to me and still wants to. I could’ve been there for her. I chose to go to bed coz’ I was exhausted. Not like going to bed helped for I’m virtually always tired – both physically and mentally. It would have taken a lot of my energy to speak to her. I could’ve handled it. I told S I’d be chewing her ear off after I spoke to AG (actually I probably won’t. I’ll probably be calling someone else to let it all go afterwards). I could’ve handled it if I’d decided that she came first. I decided I came first. I wonder though, did I? Do I?