Closing a door

‘There is no greater agony then bearing an untold story inside of you’

After another relapse, I’m fed up. I’m fed up of going over the same story over and over again. I sick of writing the same letter in my head, so i might as well write it down. My doctor said I’m repressing a lot – i laughed….are you kidding me? For 6 years i’ve had this stupid depressive illness thing, that’s blighted my life. For 24 years, i lived with feeling worthless and inadequate because of one person. Maybe its unfair to blame one person, but until i delve deeper maybe it’s something i have to do. I don’t want sympathy, i just need to close a door.

Dear (i have no idea what to call you).

I can’t do this anymore. I can’t wait for your acceptance, i can’t wait for you to tell me that you love me, i can’t wait for you to be like a dad should anymore. I’m so angry at you. So angry. I’ve been signed off. why? low mood due to burn out due to wanting you to be proud of me. I can’t do this to myself anymore. So i thought i would try and explain to you, why i am, the way i am.

Do you remember when i was 7? When Uncle John used to give me his expensive sweets, i asked if i was allowed, and he said of course. This made me feel special, like i was worth something. I played with his old horse teddy. ‘You can have it’ he said, i remember the smile on his face. I saw him because he was nice. He loved me. The last time i saw him was in a hospice. I went out to play. I felt so guilty about not saying goodbye, i was 7. Remember when i was told? An undertaker walked into nan’s house. ‘Who’s that?’ i asked ‘He is an undertaker’ ‘why do we need one of those?’ ‘Your uncle is dead’. I still remember what happened next. I ran out of the door screaming. I ran into the car and screamed. Mum held me in the car until i stopped. I wanted to say goodbye to the man who had made me feel worthy, who didn’t shout at me, who cared. But i was never allowed. I had to stay at grandma’s. You underestimated my emotional maturity. To this day, i think about the day i was told. I obviously wasn’t worthy of an explanation. I’m not just angry at you, i’m angry at him. Angry that he refused treatment for his testicular cancer. Angry that i was never given any counselling. Angry that my feelings about this man were ignored. As a 7 year old, my emotions were obviously not worthy of professional help.  This wasn’t just you, i get that, but you didnt help the matter.

This feeling of worthlessness was reinforced by you. Remember you used to joke at the dinner table ‘You need to go to Mont l’abbe, they will have stupid kids like you’. ‘Noooo! I don’t need to go there!’ i used to say. ‘I see if they will have you’ you used to say. I remember this distinctively, but you will just say i was lying. Do you remember the time when i refused to eat the pork, that was from our pet pegs ‘Eat it, or i will shove it down your throat’ you said. I still can’t eat much meat to this day. But obviously i’m lying about that to. Or wait, do you remember that every Friday you and mum used to get a burger from burger king? You refused to get us 3 anything. I asked mum for a chip and you said no. We were obviously unworthy of such food. But of course, I’m lying about that to aren’t i? Or the time when i had a scab on my lip due to eczema when it was photo day  ‘i don’t want that photo, it looks awful’ you said.  Do you remember the time, when i was 11 and you were having an affair? You used to give me letters to give to your mistress? Yeah I’m blatantly lying about that time to. What about the time when i was working late on a school project, you told me to stop. I didn’t. You came in and hit me on the back, leaving a hand print on my back. ‘You hit her too hard’ mum said. I cried as i carried on. I just wanted to impress.

Do you remember the first time you left? You explained that time. Mum let you take us out for the day. Did you take us to the park, nope. To the beach? nope. For lunch. Nope. To the cinema. nope. For some general family time? nope. You took us to grandma’s and barely said two words to us. I showed gran a game on your phone. You shouted at me, snatching the phone away. 45 minutes later, you took us home. No apology. No i love you. No i’m sorry, things just haven’t worked out. I was angry at you, but you never seemed to get that. You came back, but it didn’t change anything. Remember the time when you shouted at mum for locking your phone? Yeah that was me. I was worried you were having an affair again, i just couldn’t get the password right. There were good times though, weren’t there? When you watched Tom and Jerry, i thought that i was starting to connect with you, i didnt really like it, but hey, it was still spending half an hour with you when you weren’t shouting. Or the time you undermined mum and said that i could go for a sleepover on easter. yeah that was fun. The whole time i felt guilty. This is a child of 11.

I’ve spoken to you about when you physically abused mum. “that wasn’t me. I’m not a violent person’ you said. I don’t think you’ve ever heard it from my side. My friends step dad drove me back to the house. Police cars were in the driveway. I ran up the stairs and mum was crying. My friends step dad nosily watched. ‘He strangled me’ mum shouted. I ran to my room and hid under my duvet. Scared in case you would do that to me. You physically hurt my sister to. But i still wanted to impress you.

I saw you in odd places and i used to hide as i was angry and scared. You never seemed to get this, thinking that mum had told me to ignore you. You went to court to see us. the judge said ‘you have to contact them’. You never did. Sure you bought me a phone and i was thankful. But i still didn’t want to contact you. I was angry. You never apologised.

When your dad died, you thought that i ran out crying because of him dying. Nope. I was angry and hurt by you. ‘Oh we are all hurting dear’ gran said. I hardly knew your dad.

When nan had a stroke, I tried to get her better, buying her writing things. Maybe if i could help her get better, maybe i will be worthy of love. She didn’t get better and passed away a few years later, you were invited to the funeral. You never came. She was a big influence on our life. You never repaid the money you owed her. You stole uncle john’s tractor. I wanted to keep it. You never said sorry.

Between 16 and 18 i struggled academically. I wasn’t as bright as the other teenagers. I lost a lot of weight as i couldn’t eat certain foods. I cried when i got my As and A levels. Getting CCD i thought i failed. By not being smart, there would be nothing to make you love me and accept me. I had nothing else.

I trotted off to university, not wanting to go, not ready. But i still went, wanting to be accepted by everyone and be someone. I ended up having a major breakdown. Locking myself in my room for weeks at a time. Not eating. Just sleeping. My friend Hannah and boyfriend Robin pretty much saved my life, by getting me on a plane. I will always be thankful. Were you there then? Nope. You said mum never let you help me. Bullshite. I had my own phone. Mum was terrified of you. I felt like i had failed. Did you help? nope. Did mum take me to the doctor. Yep. Did you bother to contact me? nope. But i still sought your approval. I thought to myself, Education must be why you didnt care, if i go back to uni, maybe he will care. So off i trotted to Chichester.You did help though. You payed my rent for 3 years, which was kind. But then again, the court made you do it.

I tried to grow close to you. I contact you a lot. But you didnt want to know. We got into arguments which ended in me crying in agony. Did you hug me. nope. Say that we will take a break. nope. You threw me out of your perfect home on 3 separate occasions. You called me a ‘crack pot’ and said that you wanted nothing to do with me. But then you told my brother that i was a liar and that i had misinterpreted things. Of course i did. Regardless of all of this, i invited you to my graduation. For the first time ever i succeeded in something. But my graduation was one of the worst days of my life. I blamed mum. But now i know it was because she was petrified of you. Sorry mum. It could of been the time that you apologised. Nope. You blamed mum for me being a ‘crack pot’.

I managed to get accepted for a part time MA. Most dad’s would be happy. Nope not you. ‘Be careful Robin, she will be studying until she is 60, you might as well leave now’ you said when i saw you in Marks and Spencer. Oh and there are also the rumours going around that i am an embarrassment because I’m still studying and not settling down. I always feel bad on your birthday and on Father’s day in case you don’t get any cards. This year, i sent you a text ‘Happy Father’s day’, you replied ‘Thanks’, ‘i hope you are well’ i wrote back, ‘I am fine’ ‘good to know i said.

Oh yeah, and remember when your beautiful daughter got engaged? Yeah….probably not, you didnt congratulate her, you just sent an abusive text as you weren’t named in the newspaper announcement.

Do you know what the sad thing is? When i was little i used to look at other dad’s and wonder why they were hugging and playing with their children. I watched my best friends dad adore her. There was one time when me and my friend sarah went down to the beach. Her dad played with her in the sea, he played with me to. I found this really strange.

When my god son was born i found it weird how all the men in his life were hugging and playing with him. It made me realise, how emotionally repressed you are. I guess i will never ever impress you. I can’t make you love me or accept me. It has taken me around 5 years for me to actually believe that my boyfriend loves me and accepts me. He puts up with my depressive episodes, with me emotionally falling apart. Actually all my family do. My friends are supportive to. I have no idea where i would be without them. So, why has my life been blighted with feelings of worthless, and trying to be accepted by a man who obviously doesn’t give a shit. Surely dad’s are meant to love their children unconditionally. But you only want to know, when you want something, or during a big proud event.

So this is me closing a door. I can’t get you to accept me, or love me. All i can do, is try and somehow try and shut this door. Sending you a card or a text is so painful, but i do it because i don’t want you to feel pain, pain that your children don’t love you. Pain that we don’t accept you. I don’t want you to feel the pain, i feel when i come into contact with you. I don’t want you to feel rejected by me, even though thats what your doing. I understand your in pain. I understand that every time you must look at your children you must see your failures. It must bring you back to the time, that you don’t want to remember. Can i just finish on one memory? I asked if i could stay at your house. You said no. Your step son had just moved out of your house. If you were homeless, i would take you in. But you wouldn’t take me in. What does that say about you as a person? Why do your children cause you so much pain, when all they want is your acceptance. We remind you of a side you don’t like. We are blips on your otherwise perfect life. What people think of you is obviously more important then actual relationships. I hope you find the peace and happiness you seek. Please don’t think you’ve been hard done by, because you haven’t. Your not the victim. Every action brings a consequence, and unfortunately you have suffered from the consequences. I was thinking that if i had children, would i ever let you see them. Probably not. I wouldn’t let you hurt them, the way you have hurt us.

I wish you well and i hope you find your perfect life.

Claire

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Hellllooooooooooooo Relapse

As i sat in the locked bathroom, with a towel over myself, rocking myself forward and back, forward and back, trying to cry out an emotion that i simply couldn’t i thought to myself how the fuck did i get to this point AGAIN. Sorry for the unintentional dramatisation. I sat like that for 2 hours, just rocking, the towel covering my face so i couldn’t see anything. It was like trying to cry out a black hole. I just wanted someone to save me from this emptiness. I shouted things at my mum and boyfriend as they tried to calm me down ‘i am useless’ ‘i am worthless’, you get the point. I haven’t been like this for quite a while, and i thought i was over it. I don’t want to burden people with my problems, but that makes me stuck in my own head, unable to get away from these feelings and thoughts of unworthiness. If a father can not love his daughter, how can anyone love her? I thought about going to the doctor today, but its pointless, they can’t do anything for me. Its such a shitty condition to have. With other illness you can take a tablet, or have a bandage to allow the wound to heal, but with depression it will never heal. 

My mum asked me a question yesterday which went along the lines of ‘well why don’t you kill yourself?’ I replied that there were good things ahead of me, i wanted to get married and have children i.e. hope that things will get better. Hope is something i never had last time. Last time at the age of 19, i didn’t think i would live post 21, and i now i am 24. I know i will get through this as i have hope, but that doesn’t make it less embarrassing or shameful. Yesterday, i went home from work as i was jittery. People spoke to me but i couldn’t comprehend what they were saying, i just wanted to cry. 

For months i’ve just felt fairly empty, emotionless, tired, absent, apathetic, the list goes on. That’s how i’ve coped. People tell me ‘talk about it’. But i don’t want to. I don’t want to get signed off. I don’t want this stupid illness. I know i’m not worthless, but i believe that i am, i know that I’m not a nuisance but i believe that i am, i know that i have a purpose but i don’t believe that, I believe that depression has something to teach me, but i don’t know what. 

I’ve ignored everything for months, stopped going to university. I can’t cope. I love university. I just can’t cope anymore and the stupid thing is, no-one can help me. Nope. not a soul. I’ve been referred to the psychological service (yayyy! so i will be officially cray cray!) but that will take months, i can’t afford a private clinical psychologist (150 a pop) and i can’t find any psychotherapists over here. So that means that its up to me to get better. Yay. This is the person who wants to kill herself. the same person who feels worthless. I just don’t know if i can do it. But i have to try. i have no choice. Stupid hope! 

It feels as though I am two people, depressed claire and realistic claire. The depressed me tells me ‘i am a piece of shit, i hurt everyone’ blah blah blah, the realistic me counter acts these with ‘you are not’ etc etc. Its just a constant fight, and right now i am fed up, but my good friend hope seems to keep me going (and the pills!). I’ve pushed a lot of people away, so its a fight that i feel like i deserve to fight on my own. One that i deserve to fight on my own. It’s such bull.

One good thing that has come from yesterday? Instead of ignoring it, I am facing up to it. I have realised that i need to cut back on things, even if it means sacrificing 2 years of work and not getting a MA degree. I need to put myself first, instead of trying to prove to myself and others that i am someone. I had a cuddle from my dogs today, and it felt so nice to be loved. That sounds awful. Its so nice to be loved, even though you know you don’t deserve it.

I just want to get out of this emptiness.

Love

Claire