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cactusflinthead

Depression, OCD, and whatever else ails you between the ears

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No contact is the best approach, after years of trying I can confirm divorcing a parent is the right answer. Trans? Divorce? Anxiety or depression? Fucking walk in the park compared to dealing with a narcissistic parent. That shit will turn you sideways forever. Can’t even think about your inner child, she’s perpetually sobbing. All you can hope for is developing coping skills that society rewards, like achievement. Adult relationships can be okay but only if you watch your own back and check your selfishness at the door every single day. Relentless work dealing with it. I hope every untreated narcissistic parent, never mind. Hate is a terrible thing.

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Posted (edited)
34 minutes ago, cactusflinthead said:

I am not going to holler about Macallan's better half getting it out. Seems like she's earned some latitude. 

@XYZ hope you and yours are hanging in there.

@Patricio Swayze I too might want to hit you up for some art. You have a helluva an eye.

@ImGolfn brother man you are still on the right side of the dirt for a reason. Thank you for checking in.

@Sandman I have not gone to see the father figure for a lot of the same reasons. I don't trust myself to not be an unknown carrier. Sounds like they got to him in time. Ain't nobody beating you up on it. Don't have to do it yourself. 

@OWLVIS I don't know how I missed all of that. I'm glad to hear you are doing better. You hang in there there too. Feisty night birds are necessary. 

@TwiceHorn

I saved you for last on purpose. It's the Karen thread isn't it? 

I'm reluctant to go whole hog here, but I'll say this much and see where it goes. 

Some of the mental problems we as a collective face are not easily mended. Like you've said many times in the AA thread you gotta want it. Narcissistic people don't want to change. I don't want to admit it, but there is a growing body of evidence that we're stuck with a portion of people that are unconvinced that they have a problem. There is a subreddit for the children of narcissistic parents. It's goddamn tragic. Limited contact, no contact, be the gray rock of unemotion and escape while the getting is good. 

Do they also go manic and depressive in between torturing the rest of us?

Sure. 

It would be a lot easier to get some help if they thought they needed it. As it is most of the time it's the rest of us that have to get some therapy for living with them.

I didn't say that it was going to be easy. 

Nevertheless, don't fucking give up. 

I love all y'all. 

 

 

The Karen thread is only the latest.  Laughing at videos on the internet is common.  We do it a lot here.  Some of the time the subjects of the videos are clearly nuts and my empathy thing kicks in.

I don't know where you draw the line on being accountable for your behavior and not accountable because you're sick in the head.

Us alkies rarely absolve one another or ourselves for our behavior while drinking.  But, we do sometimes ask for some understanding from the earth people.

Just something to consider and discuss.

And we don't often talk about the "manic" type disorders.  I know a bunch of bipolars but all are medicated and pretty controlled.  I have encountered some people that are diagnosed borderline personality disorder.  It seems to be trauma-related, particularly various childhood traumas (not necessarily sexual).  I don't really understand it, but they can be a little extra prickly for sure.

Edited by TwiceHorn

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What’s this talk about narcissistic parents?

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Posted (edited)

Maybe worth noting that there still seems to be quite a stigma attached to bipolar and schizoid stuff.  And these are the ones that respond to medication. 

The personality disorders apparently don't respond to medication, or not any that we've discovered.  They tend, as far as I can tell, to be environmentally caused.  But the wild thing is, the environment actually changes the brain.  It seems that cognitive-type therapies can help unfuck the brain some.

But, it seems like most mental illnesses, the illness tells the sufferer that the meds don't help and not to take them.  Bipolars tend to like being manic, and schizoids seem to like being delusional.  The depressed even have a species of this, although I don't think they actually like being depressed.  And therapy can be expensive, time-consuming, and unpleasant hard work.  

Thankfully, for me, AA provides most of the therapy I needed, although I did do some other stuff early in recovery.

Regardless of the type, as we alkies know, mental illness affects the family and friends of the sufferer almost as much as the sufferer.

Edited by TwiceHorn

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Bipolar runs in my fam. None treated. None diagnosed. Bipolar is tricky as hell because how many ways mania can present and the cycle speeds. Heck I don’t even think they’ve fully recognized some of them. Rapid cycle is the newest and that can be super tricky.

I think the other thing is the whole damn lot of them are on a continuum. Clinical levels indicate a bright line of sorts but we all have anxiety, depression, elation going on mania from time to time and some more than others and some to a debilitating extent.

We focus on the debilitating cases but the high functioning or below the threshold cases are maybe just as common and present the more garden variety of silent sufferers.

But in the end it’s up the the person to take responsibility. Own your shit or deal with the consequences. He’s got his, she’s got hers, errybody got theirs.

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What’s this talk about narcissistic parents?

Me and my siblings haven’t spoken to him in years, won’t go to his funeral and I’m the only one still working through that grief. What else would you like to know?

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10 hours ago, troph said:

No contact is the best approach

@troph speaks the truth.  They play by a different set of rules so to speak.  You've lost the game with them before the 1st whistle blows.

It can range from frustrating to downright dangerous but if that trait is there it's not going to be reasoned, pleased, or loved out of the offender no matter how hard we try.  We always lose the war even when there are the occasional battle victories.  It never stops.

It gets even more complicated by the fact that there is often an underlying borderline personality disorder and the narcissism is the coping mechanism for dealing with the deeper lack of self worth.  I'm no expert, but I've come to understand it in my own terms that it is similar to the drink for an alcoholic like me.  The narcissism is a coping mechanism of the deeper disorder, just like my drinking was but a symptom of deeper conditions and causes.

Disengage and detach or proceed at your own risk, knowing you can't win.

 

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Posted (edited)
51 minutes ago, Reagan1k said:

@troph speaks the truth.  They play by a different set of rules so to speak.  You've lost the game with them before the 1st whistle blows.

It can range from frustrating to downright dangerous but if that trait is there it's not going to be reasoned, pleased, or loved out of the offender no matter how hard we try.  We always lose the war even when there are the occasional battle victories.  It never stops.

It gets even more complicated by the fact that there is often an underlying borderline personality disorder and the narcissism is the coping mechanism for dealing with the deeper lack of self worth.  I'm no expert, but I've come to understand it in my own terms that it is similar to the drink for an alcoholic like me.  The narcissism is a coping mechanism of the deeper disorder, just like my drinking was but a symptom of deeper conditions and causes.

Disengage and detach or proceed at your own risk, knowing you can't win.

 

the two things I could not deal with were the delusions of grandeur about himself and the inability to see wrong doing.  he would come over for christmas or whatever the event was and the only thing he would do is go on and one about himself.  not ask his kids one single question.  for hours.  plenty of faux apologies (fuck those in the butthole I cannot deal with anyone who fake apologizes - you know the type - I'm such an awful human, I'm sorry I'm your dad, maybe I should just go away and never talk to you again - or some other bs line) and the other response to avoid sincere apologies, rage.  rage can DIAGF goddammit.  the straw that broke the camel's back for me was the religiosity and the anti-LGBTQ propaganda he spouts at me.  someone in his baptist group probably ridiculed him for being initially supportive of me, so he chose their friendship over me.  and if my speculation is wrong, then it's even worse, he simply chose dogma over his family.  fuck, that, bullshit.  you can't drone on and on about yourself, fuck up and not apologize or rage over it if asked, and then blatantly hate on me and expect that I show up to dote on you with hugs and affirmations of how amazing you are.  ain't happening.

and if you don't get out, it only gets worse.  you will die or get so bent, ordinary people who can give and receive love won't be able to be around you because you're so messed up.  it's like they are vampires and they need empathetic people to feed off of and the empath loses themselves and their ability to be in a normal, healthy relationship.

I'm all for mental health but if the narcissist isn't getting help and isn't aware of the depth of their condition and truly broken and working on it then you have to get away or you will shrivel up with a debilitating form of emotional and psychological arthritis for which the only cure is decades of counseling. 

 

Edited by troph

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Posted (edited)

My Dad was mildly narcissistic, nothing near as pathological as above.  He also may have been mildly bipolar.

Later in life, after what our best guess is a bout with meningitis or some high-fever condition, he developed a seizure disorder or epilepsy (the theory is the fever or infection damaged a portion of his brain).

The seizures were bad enough, but tolerable.  As he aged, though, he developed what is called post-ictal psychosis, which means psychotic after a seizure.  It's not uncommon. So he'd have seizures, sometimes while doing stuff, and have physical accidents.  Then he'd go kind of bonkers for a few days after a seizure.

Finally, I got him an appointment with a neuropsychiatrist instead of just a neurologist.  He explained that a seizure, being an electrical storm of the brain, is like an ECT treatment.  For reasons we don't understand, ECT temporarily "unwires" the brain, and while it's "rewiring," depression vanishes and is potentially replaced by a very mild mania.  And in some cases, the brain rewires in such a way that depression is reduced or minimized.

Well, if you aren't depressed, that mild mania can be pretty manic, which is what Dad was.  More energy and desire to do things than his aging bod could handle.  He'd stay up all hours while on a walker and go outside and try to do stuff around the house. Sometimes at 2AM. And he had the prior history of having seizures while doing stuff (falling off ladders, once while driving before the whole seizure thing was figured out).  It was nuts.

And he had some vascular dementia, so the mania had some other unusual features (delusions, hallucinations) and stuck around a while.  Because of some of the stuff he said to the shrink in the manic state, he hypothesized that Dad was mildly narcissistic and maybe a little bipolar too before the seizures started and then provoked the mania/psychosis.  He could certainly go on work binges, either at work work or working in the yard, and had a pretty sharp temper at times, which is another mark of bipolar (and narcissism).

And both my parents were perfectionists or had that tendency.

So yeah, they fucked me up a little, but, they didn't know any better and did the best they could so what the hell.

Edited by TwiceHorn

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That’s what I’m saying about below clinical levels or high functioning. A lot of silent sufferers out there and the mental health system has almost no answer for them/us.

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On 6/29/2020 at 10:03 AM, Goofyboy said:


Have you hit up Kewit? Last I heard they were still hiring. Good luck!

Are you meaning "Kiewit", or is it a different company with a similar spelling?

On 6/29/2020 at 10:20 AM, Patricio Swayze said:


Yeah I have. One of their recruiters called me a couple of weeks ago, but radio silence since.

Keep pounding that rock.  If it's Kiewit rather than Kewit I may be able to help.

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On 6/30/2020 at 4:48 PM, M12BH said:

Seriously.  Thanks.  For some reason it really does matter that you assholes are rooting to me.  And yeah, I count Troph's friendship as one of the better things that has occurred via my association with Surly.  

Onward we go....

Add one more asshole rooting for you.  I had lost track and gotten behind on this thread.  Now upon catching up I realize who you are now.

Thoughts, prayers and A Whole Lotta Love coming your way. (See what I did there?).

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Keep pounding that rock.  If it's Kiewit rather than Kewit I may be able to help.

That’s them. I messed up the spelling. I have a few friends that got picked up over there.

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4 minutes ago, Goofyboy said:


That’s them. I messed up the spelling. I have a few friends that got picked up over there.

DM coming

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22 minutes ago, Goofyboy said:


That’s them. I messed up the spelling. I have a few friends that got picked up over there.

They're a good company to work for.  I've known their VP Doug Glaser for around 30 years.  Had a lot of good jobs with them and they are great people.

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On 7/6/2020 at 11:08 PM, troph said:

Bipolar is tricky as hell because how many ways mania can present and the cycle speeds. 

I feel guilty about this but having to deal with my ex-wife and her bi-polar bullshit had made me unsympathetic towards people who claim to be bi-polar. I know that everyone is different and I shouldn't paint with a broad brush but it's a reflex. Honestly, I think I get triggered, as silly as that sounds. I immediately turn cold when I hear or read about someone saying they have it or their mom had it. I just have zero patience or desire to talk to or hear about those people. It's not fair to them, I know.

Also, it always seems to be women that have it, I rarely hear about guys with it. Maybe men don't bother to get diagnosed as much. 

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51 minutes ago, Sandman said:

I feel guilty about this but having to deal with my ex-wife and her bi-polar bullshit had made me unsympathetic towards people who claim to be bi-polar. I know that everyone is different and I shouldn't paint with a broad brush but it's a reflex. Honestly, I think I get triggered, as silly as that sounds. I immediately turn cold when I hear or read about someone saying they have it or their mom had it. I just have zero patience or desire to talk to or hear about those people. It's not fair to them, I know.

Also, it always seems to be women that have it, I rarely hear about guys with it. Maybe men don't bother to get diagnosed as much. 

like narcissists, if untreated and not seriously working on their shit, then they wear you down and wear you out.  I'd be shocked if you had sympathy for bipolar folks based on having dealt with it in a marriage. 

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9 hours ago, Sandman said:

I feel guilty about this but having to deal with my ex-wife and her bi-polar bullshit had made me unsympathetic towards people who claim to be bi-polar. I know that everyone is different and I shouldn't paint with a broad brush but it's a reflex. Honestly, I think I get triggered, as silly as that sounds. I immediately turn cold when I hear or read about someone saying they have it or their mom had it. I just have zero patience or desire to talk to or hear about those people. It's not fair to them, I know.

Also, it always seems to be women that have it, I rarely hear about guys with it. Maybe men don't bother to get diagnosed as much. 

100% understand how you feel. Getting triggered by this shit doesn’t sound silly to me. Happens to me, too. Like, PTSD and shit.

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On 7/13/2020 at 9:43 PM, Sandman said:

I feel guilty about this but having to deal with my ex-wife and her bi-polar bullshit had made me unsympathetic towards people who claim to be bi-polar. I know that everyone is different and I shouldn't paint with a broad brush but it's a reflex. Honestly, I think I get triggered, as silly as that sounds. I immediately turn cold when I hear or read about someone saying they have it or their mom had it. I just have zero patience or desire to talk to or hear about those people. It's not fair to them, I know.

Also, it always seems to be women that have it, I rarely hear about guys with it. Maybe men don't bother to get diagnosed as much. 

There’s nothing wrong with this attitude, so long as you’re ok with no one taking time to understand or care about your problems. You’d be a hypocrite otherwise.

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Y'all doing ok over here?

@ImGolfn how's your joy level?

 

Parable of the farmer. If we leave no better seeds than that, I think we have done well. 

Grow. 

You don't know what tomorrow brings. I'll stand here and cheer for you. Buy your art. Go gear up for the show.

Keep on rocking. Hurtling through space on a funky rock full of life. 

We're all in this together. 

Keep your stick on the ice. 

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On 7/17/2020 at 11:23 PM, cactusflinthead said:

Y'all doing ok over here?

@ImGolfn how's your joy level?

 

Parable of the farmer. If we leave no better seeds than that, I think we have done well. 

Grow. 

You don't know what tomorrow brings. I'll stand here and cheer for you. Buy your art. Go gear up for the show.

Keep on rocking. Hurtling through space on a funky rock full of life. 

We're all in this together. 

Keep your stick on the ice. 

I'm hanging in i suppose.  The 30th of this month will mark 4 year anniversary of Sammie's suicide. Trying to work all i can keep me busy.

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Last night was awful. Yesterday I sat at my desk and stared at the screen for two hours at least. It was the culmination of a week long spiral down. Ending in a “what’s the point” evening last night. I wasted the night until I fell asleep.

My mental health equation is simple really: eat well, play games that require physical exertion (tennis, surf, etc), read even in small increments, be in nature, think, listen to music not watch TV, refrain from alcohol, follow the sun (stop to watch sunsets etc) and be productive at work. I mean something like that I’m sure there’s more to it. But when I fall down in a hole and the way out isn’t knowable I despair and think so many bad things.

This morning I decided to reengage. Listening to Vivaldi, eating well (day 3, losing Covid weight), lots of water, reading and headed to the tennis court for a date with the ball machine. I stumbled on these passages and they resonate so well for me.

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Knowing I’m not special, my condition is human, and reading it in an artful, intellectual way that makes me reengage my thoughtful nature might have me on the mend.

The Melancholy parts are the best. I found my self exuberant saying yes!!

It always seems a battle, the self awareness is a double edged sword but I’m not sure I would trade it for ignorance.

Here’s to hoping my solace of being sanely insane brings about an upswing.

Take care of yourselves, I know I’m trying over here.

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There’s a little book I like titled “The subtle art of not giving a f*ck”. Maybe my favorite chapter is “you’re not special”. I have found comfort in that.

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