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Ys
ysabel
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May 2011
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Ys [userpic]

You remember that post earlier today about how communication is hard? Yeah, that.

I posted the RLP quote about depression because I struggle with those demons that say I should just be able to cope. I struggle with them on things like taking painkillers and wearing my glasses, much less the things that carry such social stigma as "mental illness" (scare quotes quite intentional).

I have to remind myself regularly that it's not shameful to not be able to just will myself healthy or "normal". I often don't succeed.

I understand that there is another side of the same coin; there are people who have been medicated against their will, or who were not really informed of the consequences of the meds they took, or the like. I agree that's just as terrible, but I've never had to face that myself. I also know that there are people who jump right to meds for whatever and see them as a panacea, and people who are criticised for choosing to fight their own battles without the help of meds. I would not criticize someone for making that choice; if anything, I respect more than ever just how difficult a choice it is.

I have had to face years and years of refusing to get help when I needed it, though. I struggle with having to take what I do even with the clear in-my-face evidence that I have very biochemical issues. (I suppose that I am at least consistent in that I will let myself get nonfunctional with pain rather than take painkillers voluntarily, as well. Not that that's really any better.)

I made the mistake of mentioning that my therapist had tentatively diagnosed me with ADD/ADHD to my Dad (who is a psychiatrist). I'll note for context that when I finally got to discussing it with my physician, she went through the DSM diagnosic criteria with me, and demonstrated to me that it's not that I have mild ADD (which is what I was wanting to believe up until that point). I have all of the ADD criteria, and all but one of the ADHD criteria (and that one is even arguable, possibly). I have severe ADD issues and really wide-ranging coping skills with some major holes, and my coping skills are all active and thus wear me out, so I was exhausted much of the time that I wasn't at work.

Even then, I really didn't want to face it. It wasn't until it became clear just how the stimulants affect me that I had to acknowledge the biochemistry behind it, begrudgingly. Which brings me back to my Dad. The one who I'm unfortunately not particularly close to, who I've talked to...maybe five times in the last, oh, six years? Something like that.

You know what his response was?

"You don't have ADD! You're just lazy and defiant."

My Mom is more supportive overall, but has expressed similar sentiments in slightly less obnoxious ways. It all comes back to "if you would just try harder" in the end, though.

Those are demons I fight every day, even now, even months later when it's clear just how much difference the stimulants make for me and how obvious it is how my body reacts to them.

That's why I posted the RLP quote. As a reminder that it's not some sort of failure of character to just not be capable of some things.

If I'm a little touchy on the subject, I hope this explains some of why.

Current Mood: tiredtired
Comments

Parents, bah. *snug*

That was a stupid thing for your father to say.

(Well, at least the lazy part. If I can induct you to the worldwide defiance activism association so that you can help me advance the defiant agenda, I'd be okay with that. We're trying to promote the subversive idea that refusing to cooperate with stupid ideas isn't degenerate but is in fact quite normal! Once we've normalized it, we'll be able to move on from defiance to normalizing pugnacity, vivaciousness, and spunk. Best of all, if you defy me, you'll have put one foot on the road to joining us---it's an inescapable logical pitch!)

(Anonymous)
parents ..

This may be totally irrelevant to your situation, but it is something I struggle as a parent, may-be.

When a child tells to a parent: "My body has failed me,and that is what I am going to do to set it right...", the parent may hear: "You failed as a creator, your creation is not perfect. You made your child suffer by being such a failure!"

May be I am cruel to your father, but I hear him to say: "No! I am competent and worthy! I am not failure as a breeder! My sperm is of high quality and the creature I sired is beautiful, perfect and smart! I did not fuck up her life, SHE is the one not making best use of the excellent material given her by me!"

Man, that rings a bell lately...or actually, the last 30 years...

My mom and I recently had a knock-down drag-out fight over this issue:

>My Mom is more supportive overall, but has expressed similar sentiments in slightly less obnoxious ways. It all comes back to "if you would just try harder" in the end, though.<

I've had to deal with this from my parents for the last 25-30 years. Dad's gone, so he doesn't do it anymore; but my Mom still does. Has my best interests at heart and all that, but does her criticism in a very non-constructive way. And some things are just not going to change.

So I recently gave her a 7-page letter which amounted to an ultimatum: This stops here and now. I don't want you to stop being concerned about my life, but I want you to express it in a way that doesn't crumble what's left of my limping self-esteem also. This will happen...or other undesirable things will happen: like me completely closing up around you.

She didn't take it all that well, despite the fact I worded it a lot nicer and not so "either/or" as I just posted here...but I just wanted you to know although we're dealing with different issues, you've got my empathy on the parent thing. *hugs* (I got "diagnosed" with hyperactivity before trendy behavior-damaging Ritalin came along; instead, I got beaten, and frequently, over something I either couldn't control, or was acting out on over anger from being beaten. Gee, guess they never thought of *that* one...)

Your parents are not objective, and your doctor is. Not that it makes what they've said less hurtful, though. *hug*