After my oldest child stopped speaking to me I have let it get in the way of my relationship with my two youngest children. I need to realize that they want to be here on the weekends and want me at their activities. For some reason I do not take my own advice that they are all different people.
I have also been told to make my illness clear to them. I do not know how to do that. I feel like they do not know enough, yet I still need to continue to keep a healthy boundary.
Finding the right words is going to be hard. Not only do I have a mental illness, but a physical one as well. One that stress negatively affects. I need to allow them to know that they are not causing any of this. The problem is that I already think that I have told them. From what I remember they did not even want to hear. Maybe instead of talking, I should put things in writing. Not to much, yet enough for them to understand.
Last night was a great example. One of my kids had an activity. I was exhausted and did not feel well. I really thought that it was best not to go, yet I had already promised that I would come. I need to begin to be realistic with them. This is where boundaries come in again.
My children mean so much to me and I want them to be able to focus on themselves. At the same time I need for them to understand that my decisions have nothing to do with them. They have to do with what is happening in my life. A good therapy topic and I can ask my therapist to read the completed letters before I give them to the kids.
Over the years I have had many identifiers that I felt comfortable using. College graduate, stay at home mom, and returning student to name just a few. I did not question them. I knew who I was.
Today, I cannot say the same thing. I am not sure what identifies me anymore. Due to my mental illness, I did not get through 5 days in my field placement. I gave birth to three children., yet I do not consider myself a mom. One of my children has chosen to cut me out of their life and the two others barely see me. I feel like I do not know who they are even though I talk to them throughout the week.
After this falls bout of self harm, I have been left with scars that are very visible. I have seen people stare when I am out in public. I feel like saying at least I am still putting one foot in front of the other. I am not moving very fast. I have found that thoughts of self harm are coming back and I need to address that.
I am wondering where I fit in at this point. Who would accept me as I am these days. I feel damaged and unlovable. My defenses are up and I am leery of what others may think about what they see. This causes me to isolate and the entire cycle of feelings of self harm to begin again. What is one more scar to the many that I have??
When parents get divorced, in most cases, joint custody is awarded. There are exceptions. Mental illness, addiction, distance, who has more money, etc. Then the other parent becomes non-custodial.
In some ways I have been lucky. I still get to see my kids on holidays and am able to go on school trips. The kids are old enough to ask now and I have had the fortune of being asked twice this year.
Sometimes it is horrible. I have to account for almost every minute that they are with me. All the other parent has to go is plan the trip and go. Because the kids have passports, they can go out of the country and I do not have a say.
The other thing that I hate about my custody arrangement is that the other parent and their new spouse speak negatively about me. I am a bad parent, I do not pay enough money, I do not care about them. That can really have an affect on a teenager. Sometimes the child feels like they need to choose a parent.
I am looking forward to when they are 18 and can make their own choices. Maybe, I will be able to see them more often. Also when they can drive. Maybe they will come to visit. All I do know is that I feel like a bad parent all the time, yet I do see them. I need to work on that. All non-custodial parents want to see their kids.
A parent with a mental illness is still a parent. If the person is in treatment and is stable, they should be able to see their children. Instead, we have a damaged court system that takes custody away and is some cases only allows for supervised visitation.
As a patient I have to often white knuckle it so I will not need to go inpatient. If I go inpatient, I need letters from doctors and a meeting with a separate psychologist just to see my kids again.
Thankfully, all of my kids will be 18 within the next 6 years. At that point it will matter what they think and how they feel about seeing me. There will not be a visitation schedule or a holiday schedule. I hope that the kids will still want me as part of their lives. That is to be seen.
The other aspect of being a non-custodial parent is that it is public record. Any parent can look up and see that big black dot and not want me around their children. No one ever did an assessment of my competence to take care of my kids. They just assumed that I would not be able too. I think my kids are the ones who have been hurt the most.
You will feel better soon. You have to get through this to lesson the pain, anger, etc. This group/treatment should help. How about a new medication?
Really!! None of those things has worked. I still feel horrible. Yesterday I told a close friend that I do not feel right without an open wound on my body. That would feel better. It would be better than feeling like a failure everyday. I feel like I let so many people down when I could not even get through the first month of grad school.
Now, I am just lost. I am not sure where to go or what to do. Am I so messed up that I am not able to live a “normal” life. I have thought about that. What are some alternatives? I have thought about writing. I am not sure about that one. Then there is the addiction counselor. I know that an eating disorder and self harm are addictions. Maybe helping others get through their dark and challenging days. Right now, I am just not sure.
At least I am able to see the kids again. They keep me going. I do not want to leave them with just their father. I am not sure that would be good for any of them. Just a few more weeks until they will be able to spend the night again!!
Lately, I have felt pretty bad. Like I do not want to get out of bed or off the couch bad. I do not see the point of all this therapy and treatment if I still feel like crap. Then again maybe I need to go through this to get to the other side. Feeling better would be good.
School and work are on the back burner for now. My goals are to try to process some of the things that happened to me in order to decrease their impact. That looks so good on paper. In reality it feels like crap and does not seem to be getting better.
I had a meeting with my ex and I have the kids today. I am excited to see them, yet I feel weird after not seeing them for two months. I am not there to know their friends or even the little things that they are doing. I just found out today the my son wants to do a certain program in high school.
Being a non custodial parent is hard in that I always feel like the kids can be taken away at any time. They are amazing kids. I just do not feel like a good enough mother to them.
My injury is healing. I go back to the doctor tomorrow for a check up. Physically, I have a wound and scars.
The problem is mentally. I still feel like I am just walking through the day getting the things done that I need too. Even that is at a bare minimum.
I am still trying to get my ex and all of my doctors together in order to see my kids. I was fortunate enough last night that I was able to see one of the kids in a concert.
Getting my medications has been a bit of an adventure lately. I call a refill in and give a time when I will pick it up. Then, usually after that time I go in to pick it up and it is not ready. I am told it will be 20 minutes, yet if I had not called it in the wait time would be the same. Solution: just walk in and save the phone call.
It seems as if I have began to snore so loudly that it is waking my husband up. This is a problem when he needs to get up in the morning. I made a appointment with the doctor to see what is the cause and if anything can be done about it.
There are still some loose ends that I need to tie up with school. I just am scared to even go to the neighborhood where the school is located. I am going to have to take a deep breath and just do it.
My therapist wants me to feel the feelings that were repressed around events when I was a kid. I am scared to show feelings to anyone. He wants me to write about it between now and Friday. Hopefully I can get some words onto the page.
It is only the third week of class. I feel like I can barely keep my head above water between the readings and papers. All of my papers are due in the first two months of class. This is not an easy schedule with therapy twice a week and seeing my psychiatrist.
Then there is waking up early on Monday to get the kids to school. They want to come for their optional weekends. The only issue is balancing time with them and school. I really want to spend more time with them, yet I have so much work.
Therapy has become more challenging. We need all parts to begin to work with our therapist, yet all are not sure how they feel about “coming out” to him and revealing who we all are. That will make us vulnerable. Are we ready for that?
At least I will have time to work on my paper this evening. I also somehow need to complete all of my readings for tomorrow!!
Overwhelmed!!! I can ask for an extension due to my 504, yet I feel like I should be able to do this like everyone else without turning assignments in late. Maybe I just need to accept that I am going to need a little help to get through this.
Today is just beginning. At least I have arrived safely from the parking garage! One item down for the day.
Somehow I survived my first week of field and class. I am trying to take it one step at a time. I make lists of everything I have to do and then cross each off as I do it. This gives me a sense of accomplishment. Field is hard. There are points where I feel like I have not received the training and struggle.
The kids first week went well. So far, they like all of their teachers and have their friends. I have already received a frantic call about homework and was able to help over the phone. I will see them soon and I cannot wait to hear more details.
I am now having therapy twice a week since my psychiatrist decided he only wanted to manage my medications not my parts. My therapist is helping. He reassures me all of the time that what I am going through is normal and has assisted in helping me with reality testing .
Home life is ok. My husband and I arely at home. We are both so tired by the end of the day that we wind up just going to sleep.
The good news is that I am taking my medications. I am waking up and getting a little more sleep at night. The only problem are the mightMares that wake me up in the middle of the night.
Today is my first day of field. I am sick and excited all at the same time. I am scared to be here for an entire day. Normally, I can only go about 4 hours and then I will begin to fall apart. Hopefully, I can keep it together.
I have PRN’s, yet I am worried about taking them because they make me sleepy. This is going to be such a challenge.
The kids were over this weekend. My oldest moved downstairs and my youngest got a bigger room. They were happy. Now they each have a tv and either an x-box or a blue ray.
I have had to increase therapy to twice a week. My psychiatrist had stated that he is not going to do parts work with me. I really wonder why he went into trauma to begin with if he wanted to keep a huge divide between him and his patients. My therapist was great about finding an extra time for me to come each week. I am going to need something with all of this stress.
This really is one hour at a time. Then onto class this evening. At least I have off tomorrow. That should help with the stress and the sleep. Now just to see how today goes!