Coming Home

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I deliberately chose a university close to where I live so that I would be able to come home every now and then. Despite how old I am, I’ve never lived away from home before I started there last September, so the prospect was a little daunting. I’m glad that I picked the uni I did, the teaching staff are excellent, I enjoy the course and I like the people I’ve met there (even if I haven’t socialised all that much). I am wondering if it was such a good idea staying close to home though.

In a way it feels like I’m “cheating” somehow by being able to come home at the weekend. One of my online friends who also has SA went all the way from the south coast of England where she lived, to university in north Wales. I often feel kind of guilty when I talk to her because I’m only a part timer really. Of course I could just stay at my flat all the time but I think I’d go mad. Over the past couple of months I haven’t been eating properly at uni, I’m always too tempted to give into the anxiety and just stay inside my room, spending far too much on sandwiches in town instead of making my own lunches.

The thing that’s been bothering me lately is how annoyed I get with my parents when I’m at home. I haven’t written too much about my family, I get on well with them overall. We don’t have arguments, shout at each other or anything like that, but maybe having some independence from them has made me realise how much my parents can get on my nerves. My sister is hardly here now since she works a lot and stays at her boyfriends house. I miss her a lot but realise she has her own life. My mum is insanely protective of me, I don’t think she wanted me to leave in the first place and she hates being proved wrong. Just lately she seems intent on trying to assert her authority over me and especially my sister. I’m not one to talk back and argue but my sister always does, consequently they argue a lot. My mum is very critical of her and always making sly remarks, something which she seems to be doing to me more than usual. Today she asked me “How are things with the mad people?” I was quite taken aback because I thought she was insulting me about my mental health problems, but when I asked what she meant, she was referring to my flatmates.

My dad is an extreme pessimist, he’s constantly moping around and is never happy unless he’s with his girlfriend or at church. If I try to talk to him about anything he barely bothers to pretend he’s listening, often just starting to talk over the top of me. I don’t know if he is more deaf than I thought or just plain ignorant. Despite this, if I don’t act like I’m utterly captivated when he talks to me about things I have little interest in, he acts like I’ve slapped him in the face. Don’t get me wrong, he isn’t a nasty person, he just doesn’t seem to want anything to do with us any more. Whenever he mentions anything to do with my mum, he doesn’t call her by her name, he just says “your mother”.

I spent so long in this house over the last 2 years, I barely left it for a long period of time and I think I’ve had enough of it for now. I don’t really feel like I belong anywhere. At home I’m still treated like a child, I don’t have any privacy and I can’t really get anywhere interesting from here without getting the bus. At university I’m the odd one out, the only one who doesn’t like getting drunk as cheaply, quickly and frequently as possible. It seems like I’ll never fit in anywhere, admittedly I am a strange person so that should probably be expected but it still doesn’t make it any less depressing.