Who am I, really?

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I’m not bipolar or cyclothymic or anything like that (hypo/mania is thankfully something I don’t have to deal with.) My mood isn’t steady though, within 48 hours I have been the happiest I’ve been in years and back to suicidal again. I’m not over dramatising, I was cursing my luck that I left the pills at my university flat last night and the last train back had already gone.

People seem insistent that I should be the “happy” me and that when I’m down it’s the fault of depression, cause unknown. What if I am the sad person and when I’m happy it’s an aberration? Even when I’ve been in a good mood, I don’t suddenly find life wonderful and valuable. I don’t thank my lucky stars that I didn’t kill myself 2 weeks ago, or even 3 years ago when I first seriously planned to. Things are better than they were back then but not so good that I’d willingly go through it again.

Maybe I’m just one of those people who is always going to be unhappy, it seems more likely to me every day. I can imagine that if I won the lottery or something then I’d still be miserable. Perhaps it’s just who I am, but I don’t want to be that person.

I don’t know when I’ll feel suicidal next, it could be tomorrow or even later this evening. (I wrote this next bit in an email to someone, hope they don’t mind me reusing it) I am worried that if I feel like that again, I might go the whole way next time. Each time I have gotten closer and to be honest (if you ignore the fact that I wouldnt be here to say this) I wouldn’t be hugely regretful if I had killed myself a couple of weeks ago. I haven’t suddenly found life to be wonderful, I just don’t feel quite so crushed that action needs to be taken to end it. I have the energy to carry on for a bit more, but I don’t really know why I’m bothering other than I am worried about an OD going wrong or being paralysed if I jump. It’s hard to explain how I feel and I’m not sure a rational, sane person would understand but that’s the best I can do.

I wish my family hated me so I didn’t have anything holding me back, I’d honestly rather get this over and done with if it wasn’t for the fact that it’d upset them. As things stand, I’m just edging closer and closer towards the point where wanting to escape becomes stronger than not wanting to upset my family. I wonder how long they want me to keep up the pretense that I enjoy and want to live.

The crisis team are coming to see me tomorrow afternoon, the right thing to do would be tell them this, but I realise I can’t verbalise it properly. I feel ashamed that I want to die because I have things so easy compared to people with real problems. Perhaps I could write it down but I still have bad memories of trying that on my first GP appointment and him refusing to read it. I’m pretty sure I know what their answer will be; “The CBT will help you address this”. But I have major doubts it will change my attitude to life.

I don’t want to come over all nihilist, but I don’t see any value in my life. I want to know why people want to live so much, I fear I already know the answer and it’s because they experience things I have never and never will, things like true friendship, feeling a part of something, having someone who loves you.

Last night I annoyed one of my online friends by talking about this. I have a hard time believing that a fat, ugly, boring, inexperienced, lifeless, suicidal, depressive, quiet, immature, loner who has never managed so much as a kiss on the cheek in 24 years of life will be able to find a girlfriend. I can back all those adjectives up by the way.

What on earth would any girl want to do with a person like that? There isn’t really much more I could do or be in order to become less attractive.

I remember another boy in school who used to get made fun of because he never had a girlfriend when we were 15. In retrospect, that was pretty harsh and at that age being in such a situation probably isn’t too uncommon. The thing is, there will be girls around that age who haven’t had a boyfriend either and even the ones who do won’t expect much maturity from teenage lads (if they do, they’ll probably be disappointed). At 24 though, things are rather different. I suspect discovering that a guy who was still a virgin at that age would raise a lot of red flags, there must be something wrong if it’s not for religious reasons (I could make a point about the foolishness of such reasons but I don’t want to get even more sidetracked.)

I think women in their mid twenties have justifiably higher expectations from men than teenage girls. My friend tells me that it’s never too late to catch up, but I don’t see how it’s possible. When my parents were my age they’d been married 5 years, I know of people that went to my school in years below who have families now. It’s almost impossible to explain how utterly inadequate these things make me feel.

That 15 year old boy was probably nervous the first time he kissed a girl, but the odds of his partner being in a similar situation (according to the data I’ve found, assuming they are the same age) were reasonable so there would be the benefit of knowing that they were both in the same situation. I have to ask myself what girl (assuming they are insane enough to get past all the other crap and somehow like me) would put up with such inexperience from a person of my age? That’s just one simple example, I have no idea how to be in any kind of relationship.

In my whole life I’ve never talked about sex with anyone. I can’t remember when I found out the mystery of where babies come from but I wasn’t so sheltered that I had to learn in year 8 science class. People have made me feel as though I’m not allowed to think of myself as a sexual being though. That is a laughable thought. I’ve never talked to any of my “friends” (post coming about them later, it’s ok you can return from the edge of your seats now) at school about girls because to everyone there I was a non-person. Just a laughable entity who worked and got made fun of occassionally. During the whole time I was at high school I never once started a conversation with a girl and I only spoke when spoken to.

It was incredibly difficult for me to write that paragraph, I still can’t see myself as a person who deserves or is capable of forming that kind of relationship with a person. I am human though and I’m not assexual. I have a lot of issues, obviously and it seems to me that as I get older and older the chances of coming across someone who can accept such immaturity and inexperience are becoming exponentially less.

Beliefs Distorted?

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After the CBT therapist who assessed me yesterday suggested the Gillian Butler book: Overcoming Social Anxiety and Shyness to me as well as pretty much everyone else in the know about SA has, I thought I’d give it another read through. Now, one of the key things in there is about how you develop distorted beliefs about yourself and working out how to look at things in a different way. This is where it breaks down for me though, I appreciate the author is good at explaining what happens to socially anxious people in certain situations and identifies a lot of the thought processes that lead to these reactions but her methods of dealing with them aren’t really that great in my opinion. They might be ok if you only have a mild case of SA, or if you really aren’t ugly/clumsy/boring or whatever you think about yourself. They say you should look up what evidence there is to support your beliefs, in the hope that you won’t find any and that will allow you to challenge them. Well I decided to do a little exercise from the book and see what evidence there is for my negative beliefs about myself.

Belief Evidence
I’m ugly I would just post a picture but I don’t want the whole world knowing exactly who I am. I have been told so by many, many people. Probably in the region of 30-40. I’ve been called every name under the sun, laughed at directly to my face, pointed at and laughed at, people look at me and whisper to others and snigger, I can see mirrors. 24 years old and no-one has ever found me attractive, never been in a relationship. Optician told me I have a fat face, I’m overweight, pale, freckled, my eyes look half closed and it causes me vision problems.
I’m boring I have no hobbies or interests. I’ve had no friends since 1996, never go out anywhere or do anything. I don’t drink or like clubs or loud places. I don’t play any sports. There’s nothing interesting about me whatsoever, besides as a possible scientific study in isolation. I hardly leave my room. I’m so scared of people I sometimes don’t eat because I’d have to interact with them. I can’t start or maintain conversations. I don’t have strong feelings about music, tv programs or whatever else is popularly done. I don’t know anything about books, films, music, any topic of conversation you could possibly think about. I spend probably 50% of my free time in bed, alone. I don’t care about mundane details of people’s lives like who is going out with who.It’s obvious from the fact that I have no friends and that nobody would want to spend time with me. At best, I am ignored and invisible to everyone.
I’m socially inept This can be interpreted from the previous two really. I don’t know how to talk to people and haven’t had any friends in upwards of a decade. Never had a girlfriend ever. I go days without speaking a single word to anyone. Every time I’ve tried to speak to someone they get away as soon as they can and never show any interest in talking to me again. People avoid me if they know who I am and how utterly boring and inept I am.

That’s all I can be bothered to write out for now, I might do the rest in a later post. As you can see though, there is no lack of evidence for my beliefs and there is no evidence to suggested they are distorted in a major way. I don’t know how they are going to argue against this and convince me to change my mind. If they can come up with something that makes logical sense then I’m open to it, but I don’t think there is such an argument to be made.

Unfortunately I feel like CBT or any other self-help approach is based on the false assumption that “everyone is ok” and no-one is fundamentally unacceptable within a society.  Whatever approach they take with me, they’re going to face an uphill battle because I am objectively defective and weird.