I am feeling much better today, than my last post. While I am still experiencing some dissociation,(not uncommon for me most days) mostly it is the anesthetic. I am feeling more connected to the world around me but I am still dealing with the fatigue. I have bought some St Mary's Thistle which will help my liver to clean out the anesthetic.
I managed to go to Bridges today and socialize, which was great. It has been over a month since I was last there and I have been missing the interaction immensely.
Today is also exciting for me as my Blog has reached over 1000 page views. Thanks to everyone who is signing in to hear my ramblings. It is so great to know that people (other than those in my head) are interested in what I have to say.
Thanks again, I really appreciate your interest.
I have been reading a post that Sarah put on her blog today, it is very helpful, and I decided to include it here. Should we be afraid of Psychotic people?
Sarah gives a great explanation of what life is like for these people and how it can often be hard to know what to do if some one like this is around you. We can all fear what we don't understand, and I confess that some of the 'strange' people at the bus stop who dress daggy and talk to themselves freak me out a bit. I hope they wont talk to me, what do I say to them, why cant they just be crazy somewhere else? I know that for people who have little understanding of mental illness, someone with DID is not that different from the 'crazies' at the bus stop. We don't know what this DID person is going to do, or say and then how do I react to them, its embarrassing and awkward. ( and yes there have been times when I talk to myself and I forget I am in public)
When I first told my family about my diagnosis there were, of course, mixed responses. One that shocked me the most came from my then 17 year old son who wanted to know if I was now going to attack him with a knife. He had been watching a movie about someone with DID killing people and getting away with it because they didn't remember doing it. He was genuinely concerned for his safety. The fact that I had lovingly raised him his whole life and I was just not even close to that sort of person didn't even enter into his mind. 'You have DID therefore you are dangerous' was all that he could think, because that is all he knew from bad representations in Hollywood films. He is fine with it all now, and understands that I have been DID most of my life and definitely all of his, so if I was going to knife him I would probably have done it by now. Most people I know with DID are much more likely to self harm in some way than to hurt others.
My point is that we all have some sort of prejudice against people with Mental illness. We all fear what we don't understand. We all wonder if that crazy person down the street is going to kill me because the voices told him too. But we don't have to. As Sarah says here, we can become part of the solution not the problem.
"Social support is one of the most crucial factors in the recovery and
management of experiences like psychosis. When we are afraid and shun
people with these experiences, we are the ones who set the stage for the
possibility that some of them will become completely lost, walking
labyrinths in their mind with no string to guide them home. The best way
to reduce the risk of violence has always been to love. If you know
someone who struggles with psychosis, don't be afraid. Be loving,
trustworthy, compassionate, and wise. You are at no greater risk of
being harmed by a strange neighbour who rants at people you can't see
and wanders about barefoot in the small hours of the night, than you are
from your perfectly normal seeming neighbour on the other side. If you
remember that and you behave that way, you are part of the work to
reduce the stigma and help people with these experiences to still feel
part of the human race. That can only ever be a good thing. If you're
serious about reducing the risk of violence, you will work to strengthen
community and include people who experience psychosis."
We are all human and many of us have been through some incredibly hard times. Maybe that person you see is crazy is only reacting to the trauma they have been through and if you were in their shoes you too would be acting that way. We need compassion. In the past we used to lock the 'insane' in a mental hospital and do horrible things to them. We are not slightly more enlightened. We now call it what it is, a Mental Illness and we understand that these people are ill in the similar sort of way a diabetic gets ill. They have bad times and better times. Their illness can make them act strangely at times but in the end they are only after the exact same things as us, LOVE AND ACCEPTANCE. I am not suggesting giving them a hug, but sometimes a smile and not walking away might just help instead of hurt.
I highly recommend reading Sarah's post (the link is above) whether you are interested in Psychosis or not. It is a very interesting and informative view into life with a mental illness.