How is that my “best me” seems to come out only when I’m falling apart?
I have panic attacks now, daily. The kind that has you hiding in your closet or breathing in a plastic bag. I haven’t slept a full night in days because nightmares wake me up every hour. I can’t study because my head is so full of noise. I am constantly terrified, and I don’t dare to go to class anymore because I’ve missed so much already and I don’t know what to say to anyone. In short: the exams haven’t even started yet and I’m already tethering on the edge of insanity again.
And somehow, at the same time, I’m seemingly doing all the other stuff right. I help out in the household, I interestedly listen to my family’s stories and problems, I’m cheerful and smiling, I buy the best gifts for birthdays and mother’s day… Just like that. It’s as if I become a better person to my surroundings whenever I’m in a bad place myself, as if I care more for them when I’m sick and unhappy. Isn’t that odd?
Sometimes I wish my life was just that. Without strain, without hallucinations and night terrors and exams, just me being a genuinely nice person to the people I care for. Preparing meals, baking cake, cleaning the place, and getting pats on the head for being friendly and helpful. Oh, and occasionally doing something I really like, such as having great sex, writing fanfiction, reading a good book, watching a nice movie, or working on a cosplay. A life of ease.
The thing is… once the pressure is gone, so is the “nice me”. I’m a selfish bitch whenever I have time and space for myself, and I won’t give a damn about my family’s happiness and well-being anymore once I’m free of stress. I know this, because I’ve been there before. It appears to me that I’m only capable of kindness towards others when I’m unable to be kind to myself…
Am I wrong with this interpretation? When you come under the pressure and stress to prepare for your exams, you are looking for an escape path and find it in being kind to others. But that is not your basic character, you are normally not a caring (for others) person. There is nothing wrong with that, it is sometimes very hard to care for yourself and more than enough to keep you busy.
As for your fears and nightmares I think should definitely get professional help, I don’t see much chance for improvement by selftherapy.
That might be a correct assessment. I think it is similar to the way my boyfriend is always consumed with worry for everyone but himself; it’s a distraction, an escape.
I do really need to see my psychiatrist again, as my meds obviously aren’t doing what they should, but (haha, guess what?) I’m scared of going. (Pathetic, no?)
No it is not pathetic, it is just a vicious circle to be broken. Maybe someone could take you by the hand and say “come on my dear, lets go to the psychiatrist now”. Could your bf do that?
He is having exams as well, and I’m afraid I can’t ask much of him while he’s stressed. He would panic; he counts on me to be strong, to be his mistress when his life is demanding…
I did eventually manage the courage to call my psychiatrist, but her voicemail said she was on a conference in the UK. I can’t see her until after the exams…
Pretty harsh … maybe not really what you wanna hear, but when I look at it true Chinese glasses I recognize a lot. Your anxiety looks like Yin deficiency, with empty Heat especially because of the nights. Do you sweat at night? Palpitations? You know, there really is something to do about this – maybe not really solving but it can be reduced.
And that your anxiety worsens with more stress seems pretty normal to me.
Pain in the back? Are you véry thirsty of only a dry mouth? Etc etc … (and the most important signs: how’s your tongue and pulse? But that’s not easy to descripe here).
And no, you’re not pathetic. It’s quit normal with your syndrome – don’t feel so bad for yourself. Just google it for a while. Don’t be afraid of yourself – although that’s can be a very big moutain to conquer. I’ve been there myself. I really believe you can do that too.
Thank you. And sorry for the late answer. I really appreciate you read what happened and cared enough to give me advice.
You’re pretty much spot on with your list of symptoms. I do have palpitations, I sweat like a horse, my back and shoulders are stuck, and my mouth feels like the mojave desert, especially in the morning. Is there anything you would advise me to do to help myself?