So a letter came for me today from my CPN, stating that as of today, I am officially discharged from the mental health services. She had wanted to meet me to go through some forms and procedures about ‘staying well’ but I never found the time, and seemingly nor did she. It feels funny, after nearly 10 years of being involved intimately with the mental health services team, I am finally on my own. Of course, I am not on my own, I have my strong network of friends, Jen, Kim….. and my boyfriend James, who is still very much on the scene.
James moved in several months ago and on the whole, things are going well. There have been a few teething problems, mainly about his attitude towards me when he is either ill, tired or stressed. He gets short and snappy with me, and when I challenge him about it, he denies it. I try doing to same back to him, then he gets annoyed that I am speaking to him like that. I don’t feel I should have to be spoken to like that but at the moment am not quite sure how I can fix it and make him see how he is making me feel. The other issue, associated to this one, is that if we have a row, he will never be the first one to apologise, or give in. I don’t know if this is him, or whether he is just stubborn, but it is always me who apologised. I don’t think he has ever said sorry to me. I can look past it, because he will make up in other ways (cooking me a nice meal, cleaning the house, being affectionate) but it is almost as though he has this aversion to admitting that he is wrong or in the wrong.
I am doing well of the medication – something I never thought I would be able to do. Friends say I look a lot healthier (I hope they don’t mean fat) in my complexion and manner. Some days I feel down for no reason or emotional, but I have to ride it out because I know that I will get through it and feel better eventually.
I seem to have been drifting away from my friends and that is one thing that I don’t like. Perhaps I am just a little less obsessive over whether they are ok or whether they still like me because now I have bigger priorities – my life with James – or maybe I am genuinely just becoming more stable in myself and so I don’t worry about those things any longer. Of course, I still think of them often, but I don’t panic when I can’t get hold of them or when they don’t get back to me. I still speak to Jen every day and we still say goodnight/tell each other we love each other (obviously in a platonic way) every night and I hope that is something that will continue. It is good to know that even though our relationship has changed, we are still very close, and of course, I still need her, mostly when I have an argument with James and am feeling vulnerable.
Next month James and I will have been together 6 months! It’s so mad, it’s gone so fast. I think things are settling down into the ‘steady’ relationship phase. We have a joint bank account (jeepers) and do mundane house things like food shopping so I think the honeymoon period is well and truly over. We don’t have sex as much as we used to, in fact now only about once to three times per week. I find myself feeling insecure about this, even googling how often other people have sex to find out if we are normal. He works 12.5 hour shifts 3 days per week and so is often very tired, and we don’t have sex when I have my period, so that cancels a lot of the time out. I guess I still have this illogical link in my brain between the amount of times we have sex being directly related to how much he loves me. I know other things get in the way, like life, but I guess that is something I need to work on.
My illogical need to have a baby is still here but at least I am still being sensible. I take my pill religiously despite often having the urge to skip it. Common sense is prevailing, thank god. 1) Could I ever live with myself if I have taken the decision of whether to have children out of James’s hands? Could I keep that secret to myself? How would he feel if I tricked him into it? – That is the biggest reason – because it would not be fair on him to have the decision of whether we have kids or not taken out of his hands and made by me. 2) We can’t afford it – James is still paying off a couple of debts so this leaves him short – they should be paid off in the next 18 months or so so maybe after then will be the time to start thinking about it. 3) We live in my one bed cottage! Unless we plan on turning the bathroom into a nursery… well…. I don’t need to explain that one. I really badly want a baby but It will be so much more magical when the time is ‘right’. Also, there are no guarantees I can have children – but I can’t bear to even contemplate the fact I might not be able to. I have PCOS but there are lots of people with PCOS who have lots of kids. Only time will tell I guess.
I have had no self harm/suicidal urges so this is really, really good. I am feeling pretty stable in my recovery and am really glad about that. The only thing that really needs some work is my interpersonal effectiveness and I plan to spend some time on that (when I find it!). I still find it difficult to be assertive, when I try to be my voice falters and my inexperience of being socially confidence becomes clear. The more I force myself to deal with situations, particularly at work, the better I get so I guess it is true what they say – that practice makes perfect.