Tag Archives: Personal

Perspectives…

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Boys carrying spaghetti in a macaroni factory in Naples, Italy. 1929

Psychological and philosophical point of view, brought to you in plain language…

http://www.raptitude.com/2010/10/9-mind-bending-epiphanies-that-turned-my-world-upside-down

 

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The sound of goodbye: Last scene

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The last scene

If you ask people: What do you regret most? The things you did or the things you didn`t do, they answer, with longing, the things they  didn`t do. When looking back, the things you didn`t say or do, linger on. The silence can speaks so loud and haunt you in the quiet night. Luckily, many have tought me this valuable lesson, and today I can`t thank them enough. When the bridge bridge collapsed under my feet, they stood there as I rebuilt it, stone by stone. I didn`t always realize it since fog hid their beautiful faces, but I always recognized them in the end. They saved me enough to see and take an outstretched hand when I needed it.

Some didn`t have pillars of safety to stand on when they built their lives. So what about them? What about those who couldn`t let their tears flow when they wanted? How can I ever compare my experiences to that? The lack of scaffolding must feel like swimming without seeing land. “True”, you might say, but this can bring out incredible strength in people. “True”, I`d answer with a sad voice. “But it still drains their energy for such a long time”. “And what about those who lose their lives in the effort? How many had to let go right before they reached the shore?

I have no answers, but I do have my ability to ask since they didn`t take that away from me. My gift is to give back what I got to show my appreciation and gratitude. I`ll promise to give as much as I got with the warmth of this truth energizing me forever.

Who knows? One day one of them might feel as touched as me when I stretch out my hand and they take it. What if they one day get the chance to think like I do? In an integrative blender my thoughts and feelings have intermingled until this simple truth came out: If this isn`t nice, then I don`t know what is.

m6

Weekly Writing Challenge: Golden Year

Sugababes – Sound Of Goodbye

High suicide rates

Psychology Today

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Honoring the obligation to ourselves – to a good life with meaning….

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This short excerpt (a moment really) from an interview with A.C. Grayling, philosopher and author, captures so very much about creating meaning in one’s life…and celebrating each day. 

With the interview coming to a close, I decide to pose one final question. What’s the secret to the good and happy life? I half-expect him to pause for thought, but Grayling bursts with effervescence:

“It’s being engaged, it’s having a project, it’s being outward-looking. I think it was Emerson who said that a man wrapped up in himself makes a very small parcel.” I’m intrigued to discover that taxi drivers, upon discovering his profession, often quiz him on the meaning of life. “And I say, the meaning of life is what you make it. There will be as many different meaningful lives as there are people to live them.” It’s an incredibly positive and open-minded outlook. He closes by reminding me that “if we honor the obligation we have to ourselves to develop, to the best of our ability, the constellation of interests and passions and talents that we have—even if we don’t succeed, never win a gold medal, never get knighted, never get published—that in itself is the good life.”

As I stroll out of the Bloomsbury café in which we’ve been sitting for the past hour or so and head off towards the train station, I finally feel that I have some sense of what Bertrand Russell meant when he said that most people would rather die than think. Thought can be scary, even iconoclastic. It can make us feel desperate and hopeless. And yet despite that, as evidenced by people like Grayling, thought and reflection can invest our lives with something more than hope, and more than wishful thinking: with meaning.

– See more at: http://thehumanist.org/january-february-2013/spare-a-thought-for-philosophy-an-interview-with-a-c-grayling/#sthash.M109lQUt.dpuf

 

Benjamin Fry and depression

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‘I had a golden life, so why was I falling apart?’: TV psychotherapist Benjamin Fry was devastated by depression. Then he discovered a radical new treatment

By Benjamin Fry

PUBLISHED: 23:01 GMT, 27 July 2013 | UPDATED: 23:01 GMT, 27 July 2013

 
'Only the thought of my children stopped me from killing myself' ‘Only the thought of my children stopped me from killing myself’

Your life looks fine – even enviable – on the surface. But underneath you are more stressed and anxious than anyone realises. You’ve been called ‘oversensitive’ or accused of ‘overreacting’ because the setbacks and stresses that other people seem to take in their stride can knock you for six. You’ve also been told that you are attractive, bright, full of potential, yet somehow you have failed to find real success in relationships or work.

You are not weak or lazy or self-pitying. You are overwhelmed; stuck in a state of anxiety that has been massively misunderstood and wrongly diagnosed. The good news is that there is a radical and transformative new way of understanding it, and of getting yourself unstuck, for good.

I know what this feels like. I was ‘stuck’ myself for years until, in 2008, I suffered a complete breakdown. I looked like an unlikely candidate for a breakdown. I was a trained psychotherapist and a privileged person in many ways.

I grew up in a wealthy family, went to Eton and Oxford, my first job was as a teenage model for Mario Testino and then I became a successful nightclub entrepreneur. By 30 I had made my first million, married a wonderful woman and was living in a big house with a much-loved child, the first of five. It looked like a golden life, but inside I was falling apart.

I trained as a psychotherapist, treating patients in my own practice and working on TV programmes such as Freaky Eaters and Spendaholics. But I always felt as if I didn’t properly ‘belong’ with my colleagues. Many of my patients generously told me that I had helped them, but the truth was that I understood them because I was exactly like them, full of anxiety, unhappiness and isolation.

What was wrong with me? I had lost my mother, who died from aplastic anaemia when I was 11 months old. For the next two years I lived with family friends while my father rebuilt his life and career. He would visit me regularly, and after he remarried he took me to live with him and his new wife.

Our early years are fundamentally important in our emotional development, so I was always aware that my mother’s death had scarred me, and that early experience had contributed to my anxiety. But I loved my father and went on to have a successful life, so though I was never glib enough to say I had ‘got over’ that loss, I believed I had survived it.

By 2008, my golden life was unravelling. My wife was pregnant with our fifth child, and I was in deep trouble. I had made a series of property speculations in Greece that crashed badly and ruined us financially.

We had to leave our home, rent a smaller place out of London and beg my father to bail us out of our huge debts. Poor me, eh? I know that this isn’t the worst problem someone can have. I had the privilege of a safety net, and if I’d made money before, maybe I could make it again. But I didn’t see it that way. It felt utterly overwhelming and devastating and sent me into a spiral of worry which led to serious clinical anxiety and depression, and finally into a suicidal despair because nobody could help me recover. Only the thought of my children stopped me from killing myself.

I tried everything: my doctor, the NHS, the church, the Priory – I even tried a faith healer. Nothing worked. I was well-informed and well-connected, but I discovered a massive failure in our therapy system, which repeatedly misdiagnosed me, or just medicated me, which often made me worse. 

Finally, after a series of therapeutic failures and disasters, I found myself at Mellody House in Arizona, where I discovered what was really wrong with me and what had been wrong with me all my life. I was suffering from post-traumatic stress. The death of my mother at such a young age had sent me into deep trauma, and rather than recovering from it, it had ‘frozen’ inside me.

‘This “frozen” trauma is stored up in childhood and then triggered in adult life by a new stress’

Trauma is not a word most of us use about the bad things that happen to us. We think it refers only to extremes, such as soldiers in a combat zone. But so far as our minds and, crucially, our bodies are concerned, trauma means anything that causes us stress so overwhelming that our physical response to it is to ‘freeze’ – think of a rabbit caught in headlights and unable to move.

This ‘frozen’ material is usually stored up in childhood and then triggered in adult life by a new stress, such as a bereavement, a break-up, a car accident or a redundancy – the kind of stresses that we’ll all experience at least once in our lives. Most of us recover fully from our traumas, but some of us don’t. Why some of us don’t, what happens to us as a result and how we can heal is at the heart of the new science of trauma. Mellody House had created a radical new understanding of the causes of psychological distress that many therapists believe is the greatest leap forward in this field in our lifetime.

 
Benjamin
 

Benjamin at the age of 18, modelling for Mario Testino, left, his stepmother Jane, half-sister Annabelle, and father Charles, right

This new model of thinking was mainly pioneered by a man called Peter Levine, who spent years studying the habits of wild animals under stress. Imagine a young gazelle, grazing peacefully with his herd, when a lion appears.

We’ve all heard of the fight-or-flight response: when the threat is too big to fight, the gazelle runs for his life. As the lion bears down, Peter Levine noticed that often the gazelle would suddenly drop to the ground, as if shot, moments before the lion caught him. About to be caught and killed, he ‘freezes’. But sometimes the lion keeps running – there are other, fatter gazelles to chase – and the gazelle would wake from his frozen state and escape. But before he did, he would behave in an odd way, shaking and twitching all over.

Over time, Levine realised what was happening: the flight response floods the gazelle’s body with hormones and stress energy to enable him to run for his life. If the threat is removed, that energy is no longer needed and the body discharges it – the gazelle would do this by shaking and twitching his body. All animals instinctively process their trauma. But humans are too self-conscious, too ‘clever’ to act like the frozen gazelle, who shook and twitched and shuddered his way out of the trauma once he came to.

Our sophisticated brain tells us that this is ‘crazy’ behaviour, disturbing for us and for those around us, especially when there is no visible threat in sight. Instead we push it down, take a pill, think or talk our way around it, and tell ourselves we’re fine. We may have rationalised it, but that energy – crying out for release – is stuck.

‘It takes support, patience and love to recover from trauma, but it can be done’

Perhaps our first big stress happened, as it did to me, when we were very young and we simply weren’t able to process it thoroughly. Or it felt so overwhelming, we didn’t manage to discharge that stress energy fully.

Having begun with animals, Peter Levine went on to test this theory with patients and found again and again that problems such as extreme emotional sensitivity, anxiety, depression, and many behaviours, such as obsessive compulsive disorder, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, borderline personality and eating disorders and other addictions, could all be traced back to a frozen trauma.

If we think of our bodies as a measuring jug, that original threatening event filled us almost to the brim with stress energy. Any new stresses – even small ones – quickly cause our stress to spill over, which is why we can so quickly become anxious and overwhelmed. This kind of anxiety and stress are not just emotions, but physical responses trapped in our nervous systems. Peter Levine discovered that if he could help his patients discharge that energy, he could reset their stress gauge and help them heal.

That was the treatment I received in Mellody House, where they had been pioneering this new model of trauma treatment in a residential setting for more than seven years. It changed my life, and inspired me to set up a clinic in the UK to replicate that treatment over here. I’ve seen many examples of frozen trauma, and how it damages people’s lives.

OTHER EXAMPLES

Sarah, in her late 30s, came to our outpatient clinic in London because her second marriage was on the verge of collapse, and so was she. Only recently married, she was driving her husband away with her rages and ‘withdrawing’ behaviour. This had been a pattern for all of Sarah’s relationships. She’d fall quickly and deeply in love, convinced that this person was her soulmate, and lavish them with attention. But once the relationship was established, she constantly tested this love with cruel behaviour. When he grew angry or distant in return, she’d despair, feeling abandoned and terrified.

Sarah’s mother had a difficult labour with her first child and she didn’t want any more children – Sarah was an unplanned pregnancy. Sarah absorbed her mother’s feelings of rejection, which continued during her childhood. Although fed and cared for, she never felt loved or wanted. This long-term lack of safety overwhelmed her system and so traumatised her, and that trauma had frozen.

Benjamin as a babyIn adult life, she set people up to reject her, and every new disappointment brought her closer to a breakdown.

My clinic uses several methods for unblocking trauma, but to begin we talk about earlier experiences and feelings. Instead of dwelling on the events, I ask the patient to observe how their body feels. Sarah became aware of her clenched body language, and of how her stomach would feel tight as she discussed her mother. The big breakthrough with this therapy is understanding that the stress is a biological one, so although I don’t touch my patients, the therapies we use –sensorimotor psychotherapy and somatic experiencing – focus on physical sensation.

Patients will usually observe a physical response as energy is released. Some will feel warm – they may break into a sweat – or cold. Twitching and shaking are common. We treat the nervous system, not the past, which can’t be changed but can lose its power to control our lives.

We treated Sarah just like a fallen gazelle, and like a gazelle, her biology was intelligent enough to do its work once we opened up the pathway. Once released from her trauma, Sarah’s rages and terror of abandonment disappeared, and she has a very different approach to relationships.

Another patient, Kate, treated at our residential clinic in Oxford, told me how every time she thought she was ‘in trouble’ with authority figures – such as being late for work – her heart would race and her chest feel tight. Her fear of people with power over her stemmed from her early life with strict parents and an even stricter school.

Constantly in flight mode throughout her childhood, she had built up too much stress energy to discharge it properly, and the frozen stress haunted her interactions as an adult. In a case like this, it’s helpful to stop worrying about the ‘trouble’ and observe your reactions. Instead of saying ‘my boss is making me crazy’, think, ‘I notice when my boss gives me a look; I instantly experience worry and stress.’

Now see if you can identify the physical sensation that goes with this feeling. As you do, you start to connect with the deep mammal instinct that knows how to let go of that stress response, and if you are lucky, or after you have practised this for a while, you may notice a response in your body, such as trembling or other form of energetic release. You may feel an emotion connected with this – sadness, anger – or you may even cry. This is what happens as the trauma thaws and passes.

HOW YOU CAN HELP YOURSELF

For temporary relief

  • Smells such as aromatherapy oils are the quickest way into our nervous systems.
  • Press your feet into the ground and feel the size and strength of the earth: it tells our body that we are ‘grounded’.
  • Breathe through your nose and exhale slowly through the mouth. This mimics the body’s response to rest and safety.

For longer term help

  • Read Waking The Tiger by Peter Levine. It explains this new understanding of trauma; he also has a CD to guide you through the process.
  • Notice your physical sensations rather than your thoughts as much as possible.
  • Traditional exercises, such as yoga and meditation, can help reduce the impact of the mind and get us into our body.

For professional help

  • Find a practitioner in somatic experiencing (seauk.org.uk), or sensorimotor psychotherapy (sensorimotorpsychotherapy.org), or contact Khiron House (see below).

 

While self-help is possible for many of us (see above right), for deeper or very stuck traumas, it is too difficult to try to manage this process alone. Cara came to see me with a history of bulimia and self-harming. She had been sexually abused as a child and her early adult life had been dominated by a heroic attempt to overcome her history and not be defined by it. S

he worked at a bank, bought a house and earned a lot of money. But always anxious, she abused food and alcohol, before her increasingly black depressions undermined her career and the self-harming started. In early sessions she curled up in a chair in the foetal position, and our first job was to make her feel safe.

We worked with a happier memory from her childhood – a best friend whose family welcomed Cara to stay in their loving home – and this became her safe place to go to when she felt overwhelmed. Releasing trauma too quickly can be retraumatising so has to be managed carefully. It doesn’t matter what happened, only that the stress is frozen. So one person from a war and another from a dysfunctional family may have the same symptoms. Our nervous system can’t distinguish between a car accident or a person – it just understands threat, and the same stress energy floods our system.

This is the big difference between this treatment and conventional talking therapies, especially those that try to ‘retrain our thoughts’. Our thoughts are not the main problem (although they can then contribute to it) – they are a symptom of a deeper cause. We need to tap into the deep ‘mammal brain’, which is part of all of us, below the rational level, to the sensing, nonverbal place where the damage is stored. After eight weeks in residential treatment, Cara still had work to do but looked, moved and felt like a completely different person.

My story ended happily too. I went through multiple stages of both physical and emotional releases: shaking, twitching, deep grief, sadness, loss and anger. My children were delighted to have their father back, but it had taken a toll on both my marriage and my children. Trauma always affects those around us as well as ourselves. My illness and absence, which they have experienced as an abandonment, along with their fear that I was so ill I might die and never return, upset my family deeply. Having seen how well I was doing with this therapy, though, some of them have also had the treatment to recover from the trauma of this passage of our lives.

They are all doing much better. It takes support, patience and love to recover from trauma, but it can be done. Feeling overwhelmed does not have to rule your life or be a permanent part of it. Somewhere, something happened to you that caused you a huge stress, and you have been unable to release that trauma. But our bodies are wise, they know exactly what to do – they have been doing it for millions of years. All we need to do is get out of our own way and let that happen. I did it, and so can you. The rewards are life changing.

Benjamin Fry is the founder of Khiron House, a residential clinic in Oxford and an outpatient service in Harley Street, London, tel: 020 7754 0477, khironhouse.com

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/you/article-2376132/TV-psychotherapist-Benjamin-Fry-devastated-depression-Then-discovered-radical-new-treatment.html#ixzz2gSxby8gS
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Freezing trauma

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Unfortunately, not everyone are born with the same chances to thrive and grow like others. In fact, Norway is one of the lucky countries, and I have discovered time and time again, that being brought up here, is really like winning the lottery. But: Don`t let that fool you; Mental health is a huge problem here, as in many countries. Many live with severe problems and have not had the scaffolding they needed when they grew up.

I will continue this post with sharing more information about a topic I am very concerned about, since I work with it daily. The subject is trauma and dissociation, and I have chosen to reblog a post from a woman who must fight every day, against every type of challenge in the world. Please know that this entry might be triggering for others who have experienced trauma, and keep from reading it if you are at a bad place right now. Thank you for your respect.

Nina, clinical psychologist

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Fight, Flight or Freeze?

Don’t know about you, but we/I are firmly in the freeze camp.

Always have been.

A few years ago, I had some sort of assessment done by a Psychiatrist who drew up a diagram showing the window of tolerance see here for more info.

She said that in her opinion, I was functioning in a state of hypoarousal.
Which means I’m at the bottom end of the chart. When I was officially given the D.I.D diagnosis, H said the same.

Some traumatised people are in a permanent state of hyper-arousal which is where the fight /flight response comes in. An example being that when in a situation that is perceived as threatening, a person may display extreme rage and aggression. However, when a person reacts with hypoarousal, they become quieter, may appear depressed, and withdraw. ( see here for further information.. ).

The freeze response is where I am.
It is a pretty regular thing for me to ‘find myself’ unable to move sitting curled up behind my bathroom door.
shut down when in a situation that feels threatening (note, just because it feelsthreatening doesn’t mean it actually is). ‘Playing dead’ was what I did during traumatic experiences, and what I continue to do. Fighting and fleeing were not options. Theyshould be now though, I think.

While I recognise the reasoning for the freeze response, I also see that it causes huge problems in my day to day life.
I am not alone with this way of responding. It seems that it is the response of most of the rest of me, if not all.

Am beginning to accept that during time loss especially those times where I have evidence of having been out (where?) and being with (abusive?) people, that freeze response may have heightened risk rather than lowered it.

Now, I think (?) we need to learn how to fight and how to flee when in genuinely threatening situations. We also need to learn how to tolerate things that feel threatening but are not. Am not sure if that is possible since it seems from what I’ve read that those responses are learned during very early childhood.

Really hope this makes sense.
Thank you for reading.

sources http://www.kimberlyschmidtbevans.com/1/post/2013/06/the-window-of-tolerance-edges-of-growth.html

http://www.voice-dialogue-inner-self-awareness.com/dtd.html

The daily headache

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Every day someone lives in pain. Sometimes it is physical torment, and sometimes it`s mental agony. A memory can harm as well as knives and blows. I want to present a blog from Ashana. She grew up with no safety net, and it is almost impossible to imagine how that must have been. But we have to. We can`t close our eyes. Stories like her, make me want to fight for a better world.


Ashana, thank you so much for sharing your story. Sending you warm thoughts.

Nina, psychologist

The Daily Headache

Have you had yours?


About This Blog

August 6th, a lone gunman toting two semi-automatic weapons killed seven people and wounded a number of others at a crowded Sikh temple in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. A few weeks before, a man opened fire in a theater in Colorado, killing 12 and wounded 58 others. The first instance is classified as a hate crime. The second appears to be entirely random—murder for the sake of it.

These are difficult and frightening times we live in.  Much of the Middle East has become destabilized, with civil war raging in Syria and smoldering in Egypt. Terrorist attacks and sectarian violence have become so commonplace in Afghanistan and Iraq it no longer seems to be news. Bombs planted in war-torn Chechnya, where violence has erupted sporadically since the start of the First Chechen War in 1994, reportedly killed four individuals on the same day as the gurudwara shooting. Meanwhile, the Indian Mujahideen struck in Pune on August 1st, when serial explosions rocked Jangli Maharaj Road. The world has become a terrifying place.

Or has it? Is this really anything new?

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The aftermath of the 2010 German Bakery bombing in Pune.

What about the 500,000-100,000 murdered in Rwanda in 1994? The 200,000 killed in Bosnia’s “ethnic cleansing” between 1992 and 1995? The 2 million executed, starved, or worked to death in Cambodia starting in 1975? The .5 million hacked to death or burned alive during Partition? Or, for heaven’s sake, the 11 million who died during the Holocaust under Nazi rule? And going back to perhaps one of the first genocides of the 20th century, the mass killings of 1.5 million Armenians by the Turkish beginning in 1915? What about them?

Targets change, weapons improve, but ordinary people are now and always have been quite capable of torture and mass murder. Evil, it seems, is part of the human heart.

In saying this, I am not arguing that we are all just sinners, hopelessly seduced by that devil. Evil, at least in my mind, is a complicated matter. It is worth making an effort to understand  These are my questions:

Why do some people carry out evil acts?

Why do some engage in more extreme acts of evil than others?

Why do these events occur more at some times than others?

How is it that some people—and not others—take a stand against evil, often at great personal risk to themselves?

This Travelodge in Oceanside was shut down in 2011 because of its use in sex trafficking by gang members.
This Travelodge in Oceanside was shut down in 2011 because of its use in sex trafficking by gang members.

Since I was about 13 years old, I have been deeply and abidingly interested in these questions. While an adolescent Stephen Hawking may have started searching for a unified theory of physics at that age, I started looking for a unified theory of evil. We need to understand the worlds we live in, and mine was for many years almost unrelentingly evil.

It might help to tell a little of my story. My dad molested me from the time I can remember. When I was two, he raped me with a pair of scissors. Like many sociopaths, he killed animals from time to time—usually in front of me—and at least once insisted I kill as well. His aim was not only to frighten, but to corrupt.

Before I was school-aged, my mother assaulted me multiple times—a few times by strangling, once with a pair of kitchen knives, once with a kitchen chair. I have incoherent memories of being dunked head-first in water—the tub or the toilet. I think she did that. But I don’t know.

To discipline me, one or both of them shut me up in a freezer until I lost consciousness. Alternatively, they chained me blindfolded to a wall in the garage, at times without any clothes on. In the garage, I was fed spoiled food, crawling with bugs, or no food at all and refused access to a toilet.

At the same time, my father was also my pimp. For 11 years, I serviced the perverted desires of pedophiles, mainly in a variety of cheap hotels, but also at home or in the homes of his friends. In addition, I performed sporadically in child pornography—both still and filmed.

I grew up in hell and the devil lived there.

Except these were people. People did these things, and in some cases, a lot of people. Unlike my mother, who acted impulsively and alone, my father was intelligent, organized, and apparently well-connected. For the most part, he abused me in the context of organizations that were systematically abusing other children and employed a variety of people—as actors and film crew, hotel managers, maintenance and janitorial workers, and human traffickers.

This was not simply the product of a single, unbalanced mind going over the edge, nor was it the result of a few people getting greedy and slipping into amoral behavior. There were too many of them—both consumers and producers—for these to be adequately understood as isolated incidents or as the work of the 1% of the population who simply lack conscience. Some of this is about ordinary people committing unbelievably, horrifyingly evil acts..

This blog is not so much the place where I am telling my story, as the place where I work to understand those stories. And also where I try to heal the scars.

Thanks for being here with me.

Sometimes the best people leave us first

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Loss. Heart-wrenching pain lurching in every corner. Memories that haunt us, tears that fill oceans. Such is the pain of loosing someone you love, and there is no other way than let them come: The feelings, the memories and the pain. The pain is just a proof of our ability to love, a proof that we can do everything for anyone, if we decide to. The hurt has meaning, and no-one can take that away from us.

 

The following post is from tersia burger: Vic’s final journey.  Vic was the precious daughter of the author of the post, and the blog is about the lifelong battle she had. Read the rest of this entry

Examples on dissociation and more information

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dis-so-ci-a-tion: an adaptive defense in response to high stress or trauma characterized by memory loss and a sense of disconnection from oneself or one’s surroundings.

What does this mean to you? Here’s how a cross section of people
who’ve experienced dissociation describe it:

“When I become engrossed in a good book, I lose all track of time.”
–ALICE M., 33, TRAVEL CONSULTANT
“I feel that somehow my body is not doing what my head wants it to be doing.”
–ERNEST P., 51, ENGINEER
“My mind wanders, and I go in and out. I just go away to myself. Nowhere, really, just not there.”
–SANDRA N., 19, COLLEGE STUDENT
“I have trouble remembering what I said in a presentation after I’ve made it.”
–JOHN T., 41, SALES DIRECTOR FOR INTERNET FIRM
“I was at home with my mother, and the whole thing was unreal. I knew she was my mother, but I just had a feeling that she wasn’t really my mother.”
–CINDY M., 32, TELEVISION PRODUCER
“I’m like a filter, who I am on a particular day depends on what’s coming into me and what’s going out. I don’t feel connected internally all the time.”
–JEAN W., 41, BATTERED WOMEN’S COUNSELOR
“I’ll explode at my husband, and afterward I can’t remember what I said.”
–GAYLE T., 32, AEROBICS INSTRUCTOR
“It’s not feeling real or feeling that I’m just doing things automatically.”
–JIM Z., 37, ALCOHOL COUNSELOR
“I feel like a girl most of the time; other times I feel more like a guy.”
–CARLY B., 19, COLLEGE STUDENT
“It’s like watching a movie in my head. You know, like when you’re watching a movie and you get all absorbed in the movie. And you forget who you are, where you are, what time it is, what’s going on in your life.”
–DONNA E., 41, NURSE
“I can become so totally concerned about what people are thinking of me or expecting from me when I’m talking to them that I become lost. I lose me.”
–GEORGE N., 53, FINANCIAL PLANNER
“I couldn’t remember whether it really happened or I imagined it.”
–SUZANNE O., 35, HOMEMAKER
“It’s like being shell-shocked, you know that you’re doing something, but you feel that somebody else is doing it. You’re watching yourself from a distance. Doesn’t everyone have that feeling sometimes?”
–ROBERT A., 51, SCHOOL ADMINISTRATOR
“I don’t feel like myself; I feel like some other person inside me.”
–VICKI B., 44, MEDICAL TECHNICIAN
“I didn’t let myself feel anything about my divorce until after I was divorced. The emotional side of me just shuts down under stress.”
–FRED D., 42, BOND RATINGS ANALYST
“I’ve been in a shell, and I feel empty inside.”
–LINDA A., 33, TEACHER
“A very powerful wave of emotion comes over me, and I don’t feel in control of myself. I feel that this person is going to do what she wants and I’m over in a corner, helpless, waiting to see what happens.”
–PENELOPE J., 54, FREE-LANCE WRITER
“I act differently with different people.”
–MARSHA G., 36, FASHION CONSULTANT

         Are you surprised to find that you’ve experienced some of these symptoms of dissociation yourself? You shouldn’t be. The fact is that dissociation is a healthy adaptive defense used almost universally by people in response to overwhelming stress or life-threatening danger. What’s more, many normal people experience mild dissociative symptoms on occasion when their lives are not in immediate danger.

dis-so-ci-a-tion: an adaptive defense in response to high stress or trauma characterized by memory loss and a sense of disconnection from oneself or one’s surroundings.

What does this mean to you? Here’s how a cross section of people
who’ve experienced dissociation describe it:

 

“When I become engrossed in a good book, I lose all track of time.”
–ALICE M., 33, TRAVEL CONSULTANT
“I feel that somehow my body is not doing what my head wants it to be doing.”
–ERNEST P., 51, ENGINEER
“My mind wanders, and I go in and out. I just go away to myself. Nowhere, really, just not there.”
–SANDRA N., 19, COLLEGE STUDENT
“I have trouble remembering what I said in a presentation after I’ve made it.”
–JOHN T., 41, SALES DIRECTOR FOR INTERNET FIRM
“I was at home with my mother, and the whole thing was unreal. I knew she was my mother, but I just had a feeling that she wasn’t really my mother.”
–CINDY M., 32, TELEVISION PRODUCER
“I’m like a filter, who I am on a particular day depends on what’s coming into me and what’s going out. I don’t feel connected internally all the time.”
–JEAN W., 41, BATTERED WOMEN’S COUNSELOR
“I’ll explode at my husband, and afterward I can’t remember what I said.”
–GAYLE T., 32, AEROBICS INSTRUCTOR
“It’s not feeling real or feeling that I’m just doing things automatically.”
–JIM Z., 37, ALCOHOL COUNSELOR
“I feel like a girl most of the time; other times I feel more like a guy.”
–CARLY B., 19, COLLEGE STUDENT
“It’s like watching a movie in my head. You know, like when you’re watching a movie and you get all absorbed in the movie. And you forget who you are, where you are, what time it is, what’s going on in your life.”
–DONNA E., 41, NURSE
“I can become so totally concerned about what people are thinking of me or expecting from me when I’m talking to them that I become lost. I lose me.”
–GEORGE N., 53, FINANCIAL PLANNER
“I couldn’t remember whether it really happened or I imagined it.”
–SUZANNE O., 35, HOMEMAKER
“It’s like being shell-shocked, you know that you’re doing something, but you feel that somebody else is doing it. You’re watching yourself from a distance. Doesn’t everyone have that feeling sometimes?”
–ROBERT A., 51, SCHOOL ADMINISTRATOR
“I don’t feel like myself; I feel like some other person inside me.”
–VICKI B., 44, MEDICAL TECHNICIAN
“I didn’t let myself feel anything about my divorce until after I was divorced. The emotional side of me just shuts down under stress.”
–FRED D., 42, BOND RATINGS ANALYST
“I’ve been in a shell, and I feel empty inside.”
–LINDA A., 33, TEACHER
“A very powerful wave of emotion comes over me, and I don’t feel in control of myself. I feel that this person is going to do what she wants and I’m over in a corner, helpless, waiting to see what happens.”
–PENELOPE J., 54, FREE-LANCE WRITER
“I act differently with different people.”
–MARSHA G., 36, FASHION CONSULTANT

         Are you surprised to find that you’ve experienced some of these symptoms of dissociation yourself? You shouldn’t be. The fact is that dissociation is a healthy adaptive defense used almost universally by people in response to overwhelming stress or life-threatening danger. What’s more, many normal people experience mild dissociative symptoms on occasion when their lives are not in immediate danger.

Dissociation is not always the worst case scenario you may mistakenly think it is. It runs along a continuum. Most of us experience mild symptoms of it in our everyday life, like Alice, the travel consultant, who loses all track of time when she becomes engrossed in a good book’a mild form of amnesia. Then there are many other people who experience a moderate degree of symptoms but do not necessarily have a dissociative illness unless their symptoms are associated with distress or dysfunction. Of course, “moderates” who’ve adapted to their symptoms and compensated for them –sometimes unhealthily–may not regard them as distressing or realize their damaging effects. Fred, the bond ratings analyst, is a cautionary example. A man who doesn’t let himself feel anything, a manifestation of a dissociative symptom, may adapt by burying himself in his work and not experience distress in an intimate relationship until it has ended.

Severe symptoms are found mainly in people who have a dissociative disorder, but even at its most extreme this illness is not the catastrophic affliction that it’s often made out to be. In the most basic terms dissociative identity disorder, or DID, formerly called multiple personality disorder, is what happens when your “inner child” or some other hidden part of yourself operates independently, seizes control, and makes you act inappropriately or impairs your ability to function. Vicki, the medical technician, who says, “I don’t feel like myself; I feel like some other person inside me,” is describing a severe dissociative symptom because in her case that internal “other person” is a separate personality state. If that’s true for you, like Vicki, you can have DID and still complete your college education, hold down a responsible job, get married, be a good parent, and have a circle of close friends. And best of all, you can recover.

6c482babb27c99335ffbc7735e271a4c
         Dissociative symptoms and disorders are far more prevalent in the general population than previously recognized for a good reason: a great many people don’t report their symptoms to therapists because they can’t identify them! Research has shown that these symptoms are as common as those of depression and anxiety, but the person who is unfamiliar with them may not regard them as significant.?

Dissociation is not always the worst case scenario you may mistakenly think it is. It runs along a continuum. Most of us experience mild symptoms of it in our everyday life, like Alice, the travel consultant, who loses all track of time when she becomes engrossed in a good book’a mild form of amnesia. Then there are many other people who experience a moderate degree of symptoms but do not necessarily have a dissociative illness unless their symptoms are associated with distress or dysfunction. Of course, “moderates” who’ve adapted to their symptoms and compensated for them –sometimes unhealthily–may not regard them as distressing or realize their damaging effects. Fred, the bond ratings analyst, is a cautionary example. A man who doesn’t let himself feel anything, a manifestation of a dissociative symptom, may adapt by burying himself in his work and not experience distress in an intimate relationship until it has ended.

Depression: How to feel happy again

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The following post is from the wonderful Jessica Morris, who herself has been depressed and fought the heavy war against it. She has written a precise, informative and helpful text on her own thoughts regarding the King of suffering, and I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did.

More inspiration can be found at her page: http://jessicamorris.net

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The Night I Gave Up My Life

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The Night I Gave Up On Life

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I don’t quite know why I am sharing this extremely personal story with you now, except that there is a little voice pushing me to let it out, and I am acting on that.

This story might be upsetting for some and it might make others feel angry and for that I apologise.

I want to tell you about the night I gave up on life.

It was back in 1990, my life looked as if it was going well, I had a lot of friends, I had a decent job, I had travelled a bit, I had good looks, I had money in my pocket, the works.  The thing is I wasn’t all that happy and I couldn’t for the life of me figure out why I was unhappy inside.  I used to fantasize about ending my life, it was actually a real comfort to know that I had the choice of living or dying.

I used to plan how I was going to end my life so as it would look like an accident to lessen the pain on my family, my favourite fantasy was jumping off a tall building.

One night, I was working in a bar and I was walking the 2 mile walk home late at about 1am.  The rain could be heard thundering down onto the pavements.  I was walking slowly in the rain as I liked the feel of rain against my skin.  I noticed in the distance a dog, and it was limping quite heavily.  When the dog got closer, I noticed the dog had only 3 legs as it ran past me.  For no reason, I started crying uncontrollably as I felt so sorry for this dog.  I couldn’t get the dog out of my mind the next day, and wondered why I was so upset by it.  I realised I felt like the dog: alone, soaked, not fully functional and nowhere to go.

A few nights later I decided that the jacket of life no longer fitted me and I was taking the jacket off for good.  I said goodnight to my mum and dad, I called my sisters earlier on to tell them I loved them.  I took 26 strong sleeping tablets up to my bedroom after telling my dad not to wake me up in the morning for work as I had a days holiday.  I sat in bed with the tablets, a glass of milk and cried as I took each tablet.  I cried for my mum, and at how heartbroken she would be, I cried for my dad as I had only told him I loved him once in my life.  I cried for my sisters as I would miss them terribly and knew they would miss me.  I took all 26 tablets and put my head on my pillow to die.  I am crying as I write this just now.

I can’t quite remember when I woke up, I was in hospital and two of my friends were there with my mum and dad and sisters.  I had been unconscious, I honestly don’t know how long as I have never spoken of this to my family since.  The morning after I had taken the tablets my dad was up for work as normal.  He didn’t wake me up as I had told him not to, however he heard a bang when he got up at around 5am.  Apparently I had fallen out of bed.  That fall , and my dad hearing it, saved my life, I believe.

When I woke up in the hospital there was a lot of crying, a lot of questions and a lot of explaining.  The hospital psychiatrist came round and asked if I needed help.  I told her I knew why I had done it and I was going to rectify the issues in my life.  I felt ashamed, guilty, upset and angry at myself at having to put my family through something as awful as this just because I didn’t have the balls to sort out some of my problems.

I didn’t feel I fitted into life, with the friends I had, the job, just everything.  What did I do? I started over.  I dropped my friends as I realised they were drinking buddies and not friends, I changed my job, I upgraded my skills, I got my finances sorted out and moved to another city.  I have never looked back since and I have been on a quest ever since to find myself and share the knowledge I have with others.

Lessons From That Night

Nothing and I mean nothing is so bad that you have to take your own life.  There are always options and if the worst comes to the worst, drop everything and start again.  If you are in this situation just now, please believe me when  I say it will get better and there are people who can help.

I’ve learned to tell others how much I love them and how much I appreciate them.

I’ve learned to look for the signs that others might need help.

I mentioned earlier the jacket did not fit, what I realised when I awoke in the hospital was that the jacket can be altered to fit me and I didn’t have to fit the jacket.

I have learned so much more over the years since that night and my long standing depression was lifted in one decision – I will change my life to suit me.

Filed Under: Psychology Tagged With: 
About Steven Aitchison
I am the creator of Change Your Thoughts (CYT) blog and love writing and speaking about personal development, it truly is my passion. There are over 500 articles on this site from myself and some great guest posters.
If you want to learn more about my products you can check out Steven Aitchison’s Productsor check out my books and Kindle books on Amazon

(some) Comments. I have taken away many on this repost, all comments can be found at the original page

    • That really sums up what suicide really is to other people and I think it is a true statement.

      I am really touched with all the personal stories and also the support, I was expecting a lot of people to really condemn this.

      Thanks you for your comment Mary.

  1. Trudie says:

    What courage it takes to tell your personal story…and what an inspiration you are to others! So glad you found your way and that you Changed Your Thoughts and changed your life!!! Best to ya!

  2. WOW! its a wonderful story and i am very much inspired with your post. And i am impressed with the word “drop everything and start again”, which is a good moral in any ones life. I was also impressed comparing life with the jacket. And i appreciate for your courage and a right decision taken in life.

  3. Short comment: Thank you :-)

    Long comment: I had those thoughts too but never been that close to actually do it, like you were. Sometimes I think it’s an act of cowardice not to “pull the trigger” like you did. I don’t really know if there are only parts of us that needs that “killing” in order for something better to grow, but I’m glad you took this out in the light. Because it’s in our lives more often than we want to accept. We all have this kind of thoughts, but very few have the guts to admit it. Suicide, by its perceived emptiness and lack of consciousness, may look like a viable solution for many of us. We don’t have problems anymore, we don’t have consciousness, we’re nothing. Black out. But, despite its apparent comfort as an ultimate solution for all our problems, I always suspected this isn’t exactly like this. And you confirmed it to me, in a way you’ll never know ;-) So, thank you |:-)
    .-= Dragos Roua´s last blog ..The 6 Stages Of A Failure =-.

  4. I don’t know you, besides what your name is (I’m a rather new reader), but I just want to say that I admire your courage to share a story like this with the world – and despite not knowing you, I’m really glad that you’re still around.
    .-= Klaus @ TechPatio´s last blog ..Google Street View – More Funny Pictures =-.

  5. Mario says:

    Wow. It’s my first time here and you definitely left me shocked :O!

    I like what you say about dropping everything and starting again. I’m very happy with my life but I always take big risks. Best case: I’m the king of the world. Worst case: damned, but can start again. Knowing that, and knowing we have the means to stand up and get back in track is the most powerful thing there is :) !

    Thanks for the inspiration!

    • Hi Mario, welcome to CYT :)

      It might sound a little simplistic ‘just start over’ but it is, like you said, powerful to know we have the choice to start over.

      Thanks for dropping in Mario

  6. Matt Butson says:

    This was an incredibly moving post. I don’t ever comment on blogs, but when I do it means something to me. Keep making life work to your standards!

  7. desmond says:

    very inspiring keep up your good work

  8. Lauren says:

    Steven,

    I am so glad I came upon your story. I honor your courage to share it. I really feel it is through sharing who we really are – which includes our most vulnerable moments – that we can benefit one another.

    It is easy to share the joys and what looks “pretty”. It takes courage to share our darkest moments. And yet isn’t that where our strengths often emerge from? Clearly, you decided to make it a defining moment and made life changes.

    We do make the DECISION to live. Sometimes when I work with people who are severely depressed I remind them that depression is like a dark hole that you never feel you will emerge from, but you can – and do!

    Did you by any chance read Beautiful Boy (the father of a meth addict). The author was afraid to publicly own what was happening in his own family. He finally wrote an article for the prominent paper he worked for. The outpouring – and appreciation that he would address what so many people were suffering through silently – was like an avalanche. He then had the courage to write the book.

    Eckhart Tolle also talks about his being on the edge of suicide when he had an awakening.

    Your story gives me the courage and inspiration to be more real in sharing my own life experiences. They have helped evolve the totality of who I am today!

    Thank you so much,
    Lauren

    • Hi Lauren. Thank you for your words.

      I haven’t come across ‘Beautiful Boy.’ I have read that Eckhart Tolle was on the verge of suicide and that he came through it with an epiphany like experience.

      I haven’t read your blog before but have bookmarked it for future reading.

  9. Takes alot of courage to share that with everyone…

    Thank you for sharing your lessons.

    -Rishi

  10. mary says:

    Thanks to your dad for hearing the bang on the floor because otherwise you wouldn’t be able to share yourself and your story to help others. We are all grateful.

    • Hi Mary, The good thing that has came out of this is that I tell me family every time I speak to them that I love them, more so my mum and two sisters but I have told my dad on many occasions as well :)

  11. Hi Steven.

    You are real strong now. Who would point out something like this? Very few people would even think to. It’s easy to look at it from our view as a potent article, but it is completely different to choose to write it and then write it. It makes us stronger just to read it.

    One aspect we see is CYT, and CYT would not be here without one individual. We see CYT as a strong presence, and have to remember the strong individual behind it.

    I have told folks “Steven Aitchison from Change Your Thoughts said [X] and [Y]” sometimes. I say it in a way that leads folks to assume that I see you as a powerhouse.

    Many people have thoughts similar to the ones you had, and some acted as you had, but so few will mention it at a later time.

    “the jacket can be altered to fit me and I didn’t have to fit the jacket”

    You lose nothing when you mention something important like this, but some of us will see this and then still keep our important things hidden. Maybe it is needed that we get that feeling that we can’t help but point them out.
    .-= Armen Shirvanian´s last blog ..Team Up With A Partner To Make Progress =-.

    • Armen, I can’t begin to tell you how much I have appreciated your support and writing over the last few months. I really appreciate your kind words. You are right in that I am strong, always have been, I just didn’t realise it at times, just like so many others as well.

  12. Jink says:

    Dear Steve, you are a delight and I am so glad you are here. Your writing on your blog- and now you- are important to me (way down in Australia) . Thanks heaps for sticking around and for your bravery in posting this!

  13. Gareth says:

    Steven,

    Thats an intensely personal story and it can’t have been easy for you to share it. I am obviously glad that you survived the experience and that you have turned your life around so profoundly since then.

    I was gratified that you had the strength and self-awareness to write this line:

    “I felt ashamed, guilty, upset and angry at myself at having to put my family through something as awful as this just because I didn’t have the balls to sort out some of my problems.”

    This struck a chord with me as a friend of mine took his own life about ten years ago and the effect it had on his family and friends was absolutely devastating. It really is harder on those left behind. I remember someone telling me about how sad and angry he felt about how he had missed out on everything that had happened since the suicide. All the births, marriages, good times etc that he could have been a part of…

    You are right that there is help available and that that your circumstances, no matter how grim they appear right now, will change. No-one should be choosing this way out – no matter how bad it seems, we don’t want to lose you.

    Thank you for writing this article and sharing your story of how there is always a way back – even from a situation as dark as the one you were in.

    Gareth

    • HI Gareth. I will always regret doing what I did because of the pain it caused to my family so I know where you’re coming from with regards to your friend.

      Thanks for commenting Gareth and sharing a part of your own story.

  14. Shaznaym says:

    Steven, Thank you for sharing your story. It is truely incredible that you eventually realised what your issues were.

    I too, went through something similar. I was not happy with life or the life that I had although I had everything too.

    What was getting me down was that I was in a relationship I was not happy in, plus I had found out I was pregnant. I was unhappy because I had no close friends (Due to my relationship) and was increasingly sad. I took pills, but not enough to do me or my baby damage. It was more a cry for help.

    After that, I realised I needed to change my life. After my son was born, I ended my relationship with his dad and started going to church. This was exactly what I needed at that time and it has changed me forever. I made the right friends and had a hectic social life which I loved. It also helped me to find me. What I liked and disliked, how I wanted my life to be, not what everyone else wanted my life to be. I had the time to do a lot of soul searching.

    Everyone is now amazed at my strength and courage now , but I guess in life, we have to go through these rough times to get the strengh to overcome them.

    Thank you again for sharing. I hope it helps many people out there who are going through trials and need a wake-up call. Ending your life is never the best way.

    • Hi Shaznaym, thank you so much for sharing your own story and I am sure it will help others in a similar situation. A lot of people find church a comfort in times like this and I am glad you found something.

      I think the rough times make us stronger, although we may not see that at the time.

  15. Wow Steven, I’m so glad you’re still here. And how lucky we are that you changed your life or I wouldn’t be commenting here today.

    I’m sure you’ll touch everyone who reads this in one way or another.

    I was 17 and pregnant when I married and by the time I was 22 I was mom to 4 girls. I thought of ending it when the twins turned one. I was so exhausted I lost weight and had dark circles under my eyes. I would cry myself to sleep at night. My husband couldn’t help me because he had 2 jobs.

    I had a plan but never followed through with it.

    Like you I changed every area of my life and my husband joined me in the process. Today the girls are all in their 30′s and we’ve been married 38 years.

    I’m glad I’m here too!
    .-= Tess The Bold Life´s last blog ..Bold Solutions For A New World =-.

    • Tess, thank you so much for your kind words.

      You also have been an inspiration and managed to turn it around and I am so glad you didn’t follow through either, or this conversation would not be happening. Thank you for sharing that.

      Isn’t it amazing the stories that come out!

  16. Hi Steven,
    Thank you so much for your amazing openness about what happened to you. You have taken such a challenging situation, and by some stroke of grace, you were able to turn it around to not only heal your own life, but help others as well.

    Stories like this bring people together. We resonate, we meet in the similarities, we reach out to support each other, we learn from one another. Social networking doesn’t even begin to capture it. This is true, heartfelt connection, where we meet in love.

    I so appreciate you, your courage and bravery. It’s inspiring to all of us.

    Much love to you,
    Gail

    • Thank you Gail. You’re right about social networking not even coming close to capture this and meeting everyone on a different level. Thank you for your support, I always appreciate it.

  17. Steven, wow, this a powerful post. I imagine it must have taken a LOT of courage to share this, but I’m so glad you did. It’s incredibly personal stories like this one that reach out touch people and really change lives. Thank you for sharing this.
    .-= Positively Present´s last blog ..how to stay positive in the face of rejection =-.

    • Hi Dani, Thanks for that. I honestly am still trying to figure out why I wrote this and posted it, I am trusting that gut instinct.

      • I know why. :-)
        .-= Gail from GrowMap´s last blog ..WHO CAN YOU BENEFIT BY SHARING GROWMAP? =-.

      • LEBELLY SAYS:

        These posts are from 2010, but I just came upon this blog. Sounds like you were young and had everything going for you. Try being a middle aged woman, no kids, no career, and someone who had a promising life in 1990 and beyond. The last four years I have lost everything and everyone. YOu can bet, I have given up it seems. I need to talk to a professional because I really don’t care anymore and have prayed for cancer or some other illness where I don’t have to do it myself directly. I could just refuse treatment. I wasted my life, I blew it, and like they say…you only get one chance.

    • COLIN SAYS:

      I’ve heard alot of people say it will get better, which I guess it could…Kind of if I greatly lowered my standards. I can relate to your experience to a degree. But I still don’t feel all too optomisstic about life. I was leading a rough life at first but not too bad. I had met this girl and started I turning my life into what I thought was better direction. I went and spent time with her in europe. She’s canadaian I’m american. This was the first and last time I saw her. From my life was cluttered with the death of a grandmother. Followed by people making plans for my life when I already had plans of my own. I forced into a deep depression of family breathing down my neck on a daily basis. I barely got to see friends to at least have someone to talk to to gain a level mind with. I tried talking to the girl only to discover she was having difficulties and I was also being really irrational and depressed when I’d talk to her. So she eventually said she just felt horrible and that our relationship was unhealthy. Everything was just cluttered under a series of misconceptions. I had no one to talk to to gain any sort of sanity to straighten things out. While in the mean time had a terrible boss that despite me working my ass off for the bitch she gave the newly hired people more hours than me and always talked down to me. My fathers marriage was falling apart at the same time I was always always always talking to family or him about depressing things. I watched all the things I had worked very hard for fall apart at the same time relationships, friends, work, etc. And now here I am unemployed everything I had set my mind and heart to is dead and gone. More deaths of people I was close to occured. I have lost all faith in anything what so ever. I do not will not cannot and shall not ever believe there is a fucking god. I have been pushed to my edge and my limit for a whole year now and I simply just don’t care anymore. Maybe it will get better but I know its definately never going to be or is anything I ever wanted it to be. Its just a piece of shit life and a petty meaningless existence that I live for some reason that I don’t know right now. I am very quite nearly to the point of saying fuck it all I don’t care where it goes.

      • RE: COLIN SAYS:

        Hi Colin! Sorry to hear that you are going through many obstacles in life. I hope you’re doing much better. This recession seems to be getting the best of people. I can’t imagine what it would be like in other parts of the world, especially third-world countries. If it’s any consolation, at least here in the U.S. – we have many more opportunities than other people from poorer countries. While we may experience temporary setbacks in life, these poorer people must deal with no running water, no food, no health insurance and no job as daily occurrences. It may seem like your life is not going as well as you intend it to be but remember at least opportunities exist here for us to make things better.

    • CIRCULAR SAYS:

      I use to think this stuff made sense. But now that I’m 50, and in the last 4 years I lost my job making 80k yearly, both my parents died and it has been impossible for me to get back into my original field of work. It appears my 20 years of experience isn’t as good as a college students. I guess what I’m saying is sometimes it best to end it all.

      • DAN SAYS:

        I feel the same way! I’m tired of fighting everyday. I have just given up! I need some peace!

        • KELLY SAYS:

          Dan please don’t give up my sister took her own life 9 sept and its now the living hell for me and the rest off my close family I agree life is shit constant fight but please nothing is worth the pain it causes I now live every day wishing and aching for my sister .she was 34 and my niece who is 12 considers doing the same as I said I know it’s hard but please get help join a group

      • THE REAL BEV SAYS:

        I couldn’t agree more. What you have to bear in mind is that it is much harder to carry out that you would imagine. I have been close to death twice but it wasn’t meant to be. The worst thing about failed suicide is that it becomes no longer an option. Then you REALLY have no way out. I have promised my daughter I would never try again. I regard my promise as shackles chaining me to more and more years of worry, regret, sadness, loss and increasing poverty. You would never know this to look at me. I’m attractive, popular (specially when their computers go wrong), passionate about my political causes – adopted to compensate for the big hole in my life and the fact that I know I’ve had all the best bits and that, yes, maybe things could be improved. But I really don’t care enough to improve them. Just get it over with already.

  18. Richard Grant says:

    Dear Steven,
    You are “Spot On” about all that you speak of. I too had the same life changing experience as you. I have spent the last 5 years reading and studying every book I can get on “Positive Thinking”, Physics, NLP, How the Brain Works, just about anything on human behavior available. So, at this point in my life I am currently writing a book on “The Science Of Thinking”, by “Unlocking the Mysteries of Our Brainwaves and How that Effects Our Relationships.” I have seen many, many web sites discussing The various Powers of the Universe, and I must say I believe, truly believe you are on the “RIGHT TRACK”. It is very obvious that you have done much research in presenting your thoughts and ideas and I commend you. I intend to follow you as closely as I can by sharing our thoughts, feelings and ideas. Thank you for sharing your LOVE with us all. I embrace your Grace and I am grateful for your GIFT!

    Richard Grant

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  3. […] the drug when recommended.Take care always!! Know better? Leave your own answer in the comments! Question by shortygirl: What can happen if I have taken sleeping pills when I am too young? I have …has cancer has given me some of his sleeping pills. On the box it says over 16s only and I have […]

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  5. […] Go Of Your Past We’ve all done something stupid, had bad experiences and things that we wish would never have […]

  6. […] Steven Aitchinson has a driving force in the shape of one fateful night, which he eloquently described in The Night I Gave Up On Life. […]

  7. […] feel out of place when I started writing.  Why the hell would anybody listen to a guy who tried to kill himself at aged 20, went bankrupt when he was 30, didn’t get married until he was 36, and thinks he is going to […]

  8. […] The Night I Gave Up On Life by Steven Aitchison at Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life […]

  9. […] The Night I Gave Up On Life over at Change Your Thoughts […]

  10. […] wrote a very personal and powerful post about The Night I Gave Up On Life at his site Change Your Thoughts – Change Your Life. “A few nights later I decided […]

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