what is it i am expected to do.

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Re: what is it i am expected to do.

Post by AtlachNacha on Sat Jul 29, 2017 8:34 am

OKAY! Sorry for the delayed reply, lots of things happening. Whirlwind.

Ok, so, TLDR: I have pretty much pulled out of that depressive episode, there, as partially evidenced by the fact that I can tell that's what it was and have been cleaning up the accompanying trash piles and actually showering regularly. ugh.

It's like a fog has lifted and suddenly I can see the zippers on all the costumes...

But basically enough good things happened in quick succession that the divide between what my brain was telling me and what reality was objectively undeniably showing me, not just what people were telling me, became large and apparent and ABSURD enough that it all just kind of cracked and fell apart and now i'm like what the fuck brain this isn't what you're for...

BRAIN: You're too crippled by your anxiety to ever get a job! you're unemployable forever! you'll always be a burden! blah de blah blah
REALITY: your cousin has given you a small one day a week job in the back of the place while there's no/few customers there so you can get used to working.

BRAIN: you're hideous and creepy and every woman you've ever spoken to thinks you're a disgusting rapist!
REALITY: this girl you were worried thought you were creepy actually thinks you're interesting and attractive and was trying to psych herself up through her OWN anxiety to talk to you, and you have a whole lot in common, and she's basically amazing and so far accepts just about every weird thing about you. also her mother isn't angry with you, she's actually trying to play matchmaker.

BRAIN: well what about all these things that happened before?
SUDDENLY CLEAR MEMORIES: yeah, those didn't happen quite like that. and were years ago.

BRAIN: well... you're... um... but...
REALITY: just stop, really, you're embarrassing yourself.

and other things.
so... yeah. the absurdity of all that just kind of... broke the spell, seems like.

Enail wrote:Whew, that got long! I hope that helps reconcile my comments to you with my positive views of Capt. Awkward in some sort of useful way a little.

That helps me understand your viewpoint, yes.

Still, I'm just going to avoid CA if that's ok? For a variety of reasons...

KMR wrote:Oh hey, I can kind of answer this question. The short answer is: because emotions don't work that way. Emotional control isn't as simple as exerting some willpower to suddenly change the way you're feeling. I mean, yes, we can exert some control over our emotions, but it's more a long-term process of processing our feelings and then re-building habits of how we react to things than it is a single conscious impulse that we can apply in the moment.

What's more, thoughts like, "I shouldn't be feeling this way, stop it!" often just make the negative emotion WORSE rather than better. It's like the famous example where if someone says, "Don't think about polar bears" all you can suddenly think about is polar bears. By constantly repeating to yourself to stop feeling a certain way, all you do is fixate on that thought, which reinforces that negative emotion and makes it harder to move past it. You're also blaming yourself for feeling that way, as well as blaming yourself for not being able to somehow will yourself to get over it; that's a vicious cycle that's only going to make everything worse. What you actually want to do instead is acknowledge and accept that you're feeling the way you are, recognizing that you have a reason for feeling that way even if it may seem irrational. Then you can start working on managing the emotions in a healthy way rather than attempting to suppress them. This is actually a component of the mindfulness therapy that jcorozza mentioned and may be worth looking into.

I'll give you an example from my own life. I have some issues with anxiety (not severe but not completely inconsequential either), and when certain social situations trigger it, I tend to start crying. And it used to be that when I would get this way, I would start thinking thoughts like, "Why are you crying, there's no reason to be upset over this. Stop it!" and "Everyone's looking at you thinking there's something wrong with you, you can't be crying in public like this." Shockingly enough, these thoughts did not magically make the crying stop. I was still upset about whatever it was that made me cry, and now I was also angry at myself for crying and not being able to stop. But once I realized the connection between my crying and anxiety (which I didn't come to realize until just a few years ago, and it was like a huge epiphany for me), I understood that crying was my habitual way of responding to very uncomfortable situations, and because I had been doing this all my life, it wasn't something that was going to go away anytime soon. So I started to approach those moments differently, telling myself that this was just how I happen to react, it's not something I can just change about myself, but I need to stop beating myself up over it. And once I accepted the reaction, I was able to redirect my thoughts away from "stop feeling this way" and towards more productive lines of reasoning like "what can I do to help myself feel better?"

Right, see, I understood this, pretty much, and alluded to it in a private convo elsewhere, but god forbid I be consistent in my thinking. ugh.

Really good explanation though.

Problem is, when I'm past a certain threshold, mindfulness/other techniques that go with it just don't... work, i'm too full of adrenaline to think fully consciously and apply any of the hundreds of little techniques and tricks i've collected, the panic just sprints past me faster than I can intercept it.
's annoying. Only thing that seems to solve that problem is medication. Not sure if I need a dosage adjustment or just better schedule keeping. but below a certain threshold i can deal with it a hundred different ways

Also, seriously, mindfulness kind of things just tend to ratchet everything up. And quiet meditation things. And just anything quiet and peaceful. one of the things that sometimes happens with me when I'm in an anxious state is... I'll start analyzing the architecture and the sounds in the room and the airflow and the locations of all the doors and windows and vents and furniture and the frequency of the humming from the lights and every single little detail of someone's clothing or facial expressions or body language, which is why I have trouble reading people when i'm anxious, because I can see a thousand different things that I could interpret a thousand different ways and ugh.

And yes, that last bit was covered in the psych eval, my OVER-analysis of facial expressions and body language being at least part of the reason I have trouble with that. WHY DO I FORGET IMPORTANT HELPFUL THINGS WHEN I NEED THEM ARGH.

i might be misunderstanding how mindfulness is supposed to work, though. idk.

Werel wrote:What you're describing isn't unjustly deflecting blame onto your ex-- if that's how she treated you, she was really being extremely shitty to you. It's not a cop-out to consider behavior like that as being somebody else being, if not eeeeeeeviiillll, cruel and selfish. There's nothing wrong with saying "hey, this person's behavior was unacceptable"-- it can be a good thing, if it helps you gather concrete examples of how not to be.

What? No, my ex earned all the worst accidental connotations of her given name, no, I meant it wouldn't seem right to act like everyone who has a problem with me is just like my ex, essentially.

Werel wrote:Do you remember the words in which you were told this? Is this something people told you, or something you inferred? It's really good to do everything you can to not cause this kind of fear in others, but this is just such an extreme statement that I'm still having a lot of trouble imagining situations where it would occur. Is this a thing strangers said to you? Acquaintances?

VERY GOOD QUESTIONS. Let's see, let's look down the list of people who've actually thought I was a rapist, who've actually thought I was stalking them, who've actually otherwise had dramatic reactions.

Oh look.

Almost all of the items on these lists are from highschool.

Well then. *facepalm*

Other negative reactions have occurred, of course, but not anywhere near as bad as I was remembering, And I can remember exactly where I fucked up now.

Let me reiterate that: my worrying about my inability to see where i fucked up was the root cause of my inability to see where i fucked up.

whyyyyyyyy. how. this is the dumbest paradox...

Thanks so much, all of you, for being so patient with this... stupid... mess. ugh. sorry for all the bullshit.

SOOO many things to get back to. um. probably sleep first, it's 6 AM why am i up noooo. well if any of that was incomprehensible you know why.

will try and get back here and post... something... positive... somewhere...


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Re: what is it i am expected to do.

Post by Enail on Sat Jul 29, 2017 1:59 pm

Really glad to hear you're doing better and have had so many awesome things happen! Way to go!

AtlachNacha wrote:
Enail wrote:Whew, that got long! I hope that helps reconcile my comments to you with my positive views of Capt. Awkward in some sort of useful way a little.

That helps me understand your viewpoint, yes.

Still, I'm just going to avoid CA if that's ok? For a variety of reasons...

Definitely! That sounds sensible, and just b/c I like it doesn't mean you have to anyway!

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