Remission and Invitation

During my annual physical last week, my doctor asked me how I was doing with my depression. I said, “Doc, I gotta tell you, its been about 2 years since my last depressive episode. The longest I had gone before this was 2-3 months.” So he wrote down “DEPRESSION IN REMISSION” in my file.

 

Wow.

Remission.

I started thinking about this blog and what a comfort it has been to have an outlet for my thoughts. It most assuredly contributed to my remission. However, I do not want it to go away. My own efforts going forward will focus on educating the general public about depression and those that suffer from it. I will take on the stigma associated with depression in society and tell the story of survival and strength. Your survival and strength.

 

I want your stories told. I have told mine already. I would like to invite anyone who would like to tell his/her story on an established blog (audience!!) to join this blog as a contributing author. If you are interested, please let me know.

 

The only way for society to change it’s perception is to put the truth in their faces over and over.

 

You are strong. Keep Walking Forward!!!

 

~Drew

Posted in C-PTSD, depression, NPD: Narcissitic Personality Disorder, ptsd | Tagged , , , | 3 Comments

Gravity and Air Pressure

I start here and go back there.

I start there and end up back here

Again.

Too much to take in.

There’s too much to take in.

Information crowds atop  my ignorance

And pushes down on my body.

It is my Air Pressure.

Remnants of my past pull me down

Anchored ’round my feet.

It is my Gravity.

I never feel

strong.

I never feel

right.

I never feel

adjusted.

I’m just surviving the fight.

A little bit easier.

Life should be a little bit easier.

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The Obituary I Would Have Written 10 Years Ago

I saw this in the news today and it tugged on my heart a bit. I feel for these adult children of an abusive mother. Had my abuser passed away 10 years ago, I might have done the same thing. The pain can be overwhelming, especially when the abuser keeps injecting themselves into your life and messing with you. This is no longer the case for me. I feel I have moved beyond where she can hurt me. She still has a way of pissing me off from time to time, but it no longer triggers me.

 

When I read this, I thought of how I was before. I understand why these folks did what they did. I hope they find closure.

I hope this finds you all well!

 

~Drew

http://gawker.com/this-brutal-obituary-is-a-reminder-to-be-good-to-your-c-1286582748

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I am Confident I Lack Confidence

According to Wikipedia:

Confidence is generally described as a state of being certain either that a hypothesis or prediction is correct or that a chosen course of action is the best or most effective. Self-confidence is having confidence in oneself. Arrogance or hubris in this comparison, is having unmerited confidence—believing something or someone is capable or correct when they are not. Overconfidence or presumptuousness is excessive belief in someone (or something) succeeding, without any regard for failure. Confidence can be a self-fulfilling prophecy as those without it may fail or not try because they lack it and those with it may succeed because they have it rather than because of an innate ability.

The key word is certainty. Being certain that you are right. I see a spectrum here:

Lack of                                                                                                                                      Over-
Confidence                                                      Confidence           Arrogance                   Confidence

1_______________________________5__________7_______________10

We all have met people who fall along this spectrum. But where do you and I fall? Can we be sure? How do others perceive where we fall? Does this perception hurt us in our jobs or relationships? Is this a blind-spot for us? Do we see what others see? Does that matter?

Now that I’m done with rhetorical questions, go ahead and answer them for yourself.

I am the child of an abusive narcissist. I was physically and mentally tortured. Any confidence I may have had was ripped from me. I was taught to filter all things through the lens of how it affected my abuser. I was not allowed to have faith in my abilities or to have opinions of my own. How can you have confidence in yourself when there is no self in which to have confidence? Thus, I had no confidence when I went out in the world. Zero.

That was 27 years ago.

I am a 45-year-old man now.

When I left home, I was certainly a zero on the confidence spectrum. I would say I am a three now. Sometimes a four, but never a five.

I actually have an opinion and a self now. These were hard to come by, believe me. But I watch those who score five and above make  quick decisions and sell it in a way that others just buy it. I can’t do that, even when I am sure I am right. There must be a lack of surety in my voice, because I am hardly ever accepted as an authority, even though I am seen as highly intelligent.

I don’t know how to fix this. Maybe this is a part of my upbringing I cannot fix. Maybe I will figure it out in another 20 years. I am not sure. See, I have the same lack of confidence in myself others must see in my too.

There is another side of this also. I am intelligent and I question. I like to look at all angles before making a decision. I am not good at snap decisions because it takes me a while to weigh all sides. I am cautious by nature and do not do my best work when put on the spot. Perhaps this comes across as lack of confidence.

I have also noted that confident people seem to listen more critically to statements made to them then I do. They seem to listen for errors in statements, no matter how minor, and I tend to listen for truths on which to build. It may seem like a hair-splitting difference, but I see it as much more. If you listen for errors, and only point those out, you are listening to tear down and argument. If you listen for truths, you are listening to build understanding.

I find myself on the receiving-end of the former quite often, which makes me not want open my mouth…ever. I find myself quite often doing the latter. In my opinion, by doing the former, you put others on the defensive. I hate being on the defensive. I was raised on the defensive 100% of the time. I don’t want to put others on the defensive any more than I want to be on the defensive. But maybe I need to.

Perhaps I have just stumbled on to the answer:

1) Speak less often, and when I do, speak to my audience (knowing how they are listening).

2) Listen more critically more often.

3) Learn how to bounce off the defensive ropes and come out unphased and swinging.

 

Whatever the answer, it is most assuredly a lifelong battle.

I will start here.

Posted in confidence, conversation, Narcissism, NPD: Narcissitic Personality Disorder, recovery, reflection | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Patience, or Lack Thereof

Patience, or Lack Thereof.

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Sayonara Depression

I have not been depressed in 6 months despite coming off my meds. Why? Meditation. Regular meditation. That is all.

ps. I took classes at a Buddhist center in town…it helped!

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Seeking the Approval of Others (as a way to escape approving of myself)

I can remember in 5th grade when Mrs. White hit me over the head with a magazine for asking for my missing homework assignments, again. Now I can freely admit that I was a hyperactive child and thus a nightmare for a classroom teacher. But on that day she became another abuser. And all I wanted was her approval.

 
This has been a pattern throughout my life. I desire the approval of authority figures, and I have figured out why. You see, when you have no sense of self, there is no self-esteem, only esteem from others. When you have no self…when the only self you see when you look in the mirror is that of your NPD abuser, you cannot feel confidence in anything you do, because you are not allowed to exist.

This pattern follows me to this day. And it is annoying me. I WILL seek my own approval! I WILL think of myself as worthwhile. I WILL be confident and stand up for myself. I WILL see me as someone worth approving of.

I even ended the last sentence with a preposition, so there!

Posted in abuse, acceptance, Narcissism, NPD: Narcissitic Personality Disorder, recovery, reflection | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment