Tag Archive: Despair


Near Death Experience

The other day I watched a David Nichtern video, it was one of three on something called Lojong Mind Training (they and others can be found here), which was a new term to me, from Buddhism, but apparently it is pretty foundational and important. I can’t remember everything it involves so I won’t reduce it by trying to explain what I can remember, but he said something about getting old and dying. He said that we can expect to live to about 70-90 years old. That was the span, but he mentioned ages in between which, for me, brought it into sharp relief. I’m 56, and I calculated the years between now and 70 years old and realised it is only 14 years. That brought me up really sharp. When you are 56, 14 years isn’t a long time, especially if you think that could possibly be the end of it all, as far as life’s opportunities on earth are concerned. I had watched another of his videos previously on old age, sickness and death and it had nowhere near the same impact on me as the mention in this video.

I thought about it, this sudden awareness of how short a time I had left, potentially, and I thought that from now on my life is, literally, a near death experience.  Many of us are afraid of death all our lives, sometimes manifesting in denial or defiance, from the point we understand it is going to happen to us.  People say that young people think they are immortal and will never die.  When I was young I think it was something I couldn’t get my head around, that I wasn’t going to live for ever and that, one day, I would be like a lot of the older people I saw.  I still can’t, really.  I have moments when I dread becoming incapacitated and being alone with it, maybe put into a care home.  I can’t imagine anything worse, given my own experiences in hospital and the stories of abuse that somehow manage to get out and go public.  It’s a bit like the way some people view mental illness.  It’s scary as a concept but they hope and think it is never going to happen to them.

I’m a pretty isolated person these days and, in some ways, always have been, so I don’t know how much I have in common with other people in this, it isn’t something I remember having talked about. But when I was in my teens I had this idea that I wouldn’t live beyond 20 or 21.  I just couldn’t see life beyond that point.  I wondered about it a lot.  Maybe it was a bit of a Victorian novel idea of dying young, and I suppose that, psychologically, that sort of thing might be described as a near death experience in the way I’m using the term for this post.  But it is very much an ‘in the mind’ thing.  I’ve known for a few years now that I have lived most of the life I am going to live.  I feel as if I’ve achieved nothing and there are things that are important to me, I like to think, that I would like to achieve, and potentially I now have ONLY 14 years left in which to do it.  Possibly even fewer.  Of course I don’t live with that intense awareness all the time.  If I did I’m sure it would be unbearable for me.  But, at the moment, it can loom over me like a sense of impending doom and fear of failure.  And I see myself beginning to understand and handle and cope with my life experience better than I used to, like little shoots of hope and growth, then I hit a wall and have these crashing waves of despair and regret and feelings like it is all a bit pointless to begin to feel this way NOW when the time I really needed it and it could have made a real difference in my life and perspective was when I was much younger.  It’s like, ‘what’s the point of this, now?  I’m going to die soon.  It’s too late.’.  It is preceded by real joy, but the joy is quickly extinguished in painful feelings of hopelessness and fear and it being too late, and that death is very close and ready to pounce.  Often, along with that, there are feelings of, ‘why didn’t I get this before?’ and ‘what have they done to me – and why?’.

I didn’t mean to end up here.  I feel as if I had better stop, I’m not sure where else to go with it.  I’m OK, though.  If some of my friends felt able to help me laugh about it that would probably be the right way for me to deal with it.  It feels that way at the moment, anyway.  Laugh at life’s tragedy, at least your own.  It’s the way forward.  As the song says, ‘Don’t Worry, Be Happy’.  I really think that, to a great extent, it’s a choice.

I hope you won’t mind that I have written this way and that some of you might find it helpful. Thinking about it, I’m thinking I might be describing what has often been termed a mid-life crisis, though maybe I’m past that age, I don’t know.  These days at this point I feel as if I should do a Google search.  Communication and accessibility of information are definitely changing since the birth of the internet.

And ANOTHER of my messy offerings flies into the ether!  I do love to write, though.

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Suggested Reading

I have just been reading through my entries tagged Highbury Hospital, and it brought back memories.  I had an awful time there.  I would like to direct new readers (and old) to those posts.  It was not a healing atmosphere, and I believe I was very victimised there, probably in retaliation for my blog and speaking out.  Please read some of them and leave comments.  Click on Highbury Hospital in my tag cloud a little way down on the right.

Beginnings and Endings

Tomorrow my tenancy starts in my new home, but I won’t be moving in immediately.  I still need to decorate and I’m going to see if I can get some volunteers for that, but I’ve never decorated and have no idea about things like how many pots of paint I am going to need.  I have been awarded 45 points by the council to buy decorating stuff with, but their colours are very limited and a bit boring (I love the way the WordPress site puts a squiggly red line under ‘colours’ spelt the English way! It doesn’t like ‘spelt’ either!)

The idea is that I should erect a shed in the garden to store the stuff that won’t fit inside my bungalow.  It would be a metal shed, which is both cheaper and more secure than wooden, apparently, but it will still be very expensive and security will be a constant worry.  I had wasps in my kitchen last week, they were coming down the boiler flue, and the man who came round to sort them out commented that the back was open to intruders, being on the corner with nothing beside.  I’ve been in that situation before, before the new houses were built next door to me in London, and I was burgled several times.  It’s not a nice feeling.  I woke up one morning to find someone in my bedroom.  But he broke in through the front door.

I’m looking forward to moving in now, but the shortage of money makes it a time of great anxiety for me.  If it weren’t for the fact that I need to buy a shed I would be OK, but I’m just short of what it is estimated I will need for that.  At the moment I am waiting for the outcome of a budgeting loan application, and I expect that to take another 3 weeks to come through.  In the meantime I have a discharge meeting on Tuesday, and I’m hoping they will give me longer than just two weeks to move in.

I’ve called this post ‘Beginnings and Endings’.  Obviously it will be a new beginning in the bungalow, and an end to nearly two years and five months in hospital, and an end on three years homeless, but that wasn’t what I had in mind when I named my post.

By endings I was thinking about the end of life.  I’m 53, which isn’t old, but it is still the wrong side of half way through my life.  I’ve been thinking I don’t want to grow old alone.  I have no partner, I have no children.  My mother has arthritis and uses a wheelchair.  Apart from her shopper and her cleaner I am the only person she sees, every two weeks, which is how she wants it.  I’ve been thinking about suicide as an alternative to getting very old and dragging myself around lonely and in pain. Lately I’ve been thinking about Dignitas.  I’ve been thinking about them because I wouldn’t know how to commit suicide myself, I wouldn’t have the tablets and I can’t see me hanging myself, I don’t think I’d do a good job of ending my life.  I’ve also thought how unnatural it seems to me that an organisation like Dignitas exists to help people to die.  I don’t know if they exist for anything else.

I’m a bit confused.   I’ve been seeing old people out and about and they seem OK, talking to each other on the bus.  Many of them seem mobile enough.  But I feel a general despair because I don’t think I have any friends and I don’t think that, at my age, I can make the kind of friends who would be able to stand in for lifetime friends, of which I have none.  I think my last years will be very, very lonely.  I don’t have much hope at the moment about anything.  I think boredom is going to be a longstanding problem for me, and I can’t see the point of hanging around for that.  I also don’t fancy the idea of a care home, which might be a necessity later on.  Ever since the mental health services got involved in my life I have felt insecure and that I have no reliable freedom, I don’t want to end my days in care.  I don’t want to drag my way through the last years of my life subject to situations I don’t want to be in.

I’m not planning to do anything at the moment.  I was thinking maybe some time in my 60s.  I’m not sure if I could if it actually came down to it, but I’m not so afraid of the idea of ending my life as I once was.  I am afraid of the possibility  of vandalism and intrusion in my new home and whatever future home I establish, thinking of Bulgaria.  I don’t want to live out my life subject to those things, I don’t want to be in fear of things being spoilt all the time, and mental health teams and police refusing to take it seriously.  Saying I’m having auditory hallucinations rather than acknowledge something real and not OK is being done to me.

The End.

 

 

31.08.2014

My radio is playing up, it won’t transmit properly without interference unless I’m sitting still in the middle of the room or right on top of it, so I’ve been playing my way through my Napster library (yes, I’m still with Napster) to see why I downloaded the items in the first place.

I don’t normally play my music during the day, but I’ve got a few that I go to at night and play in an attempt to get myself off to sleep, so yesterday and today I thought I’d do a whistlestop tour of everything in my library, except it’s not whistlestop, I’m playing them right through in alphabetical order of artist.

I’ve got some ‘music for deep meditation’ on at the moment called Bansuri.  I’ve had Alfie Boe on, someone called Antman reading the first 29 Psalms, Amy Grant, AudioBible reading of the Gospel of John, Andy Williams (downloaded for my mother) and Arthur Rubenstein playing Chopin’s Nocturnes.  That’s just the first few.  I’m into the Bs now but I can’t be bothered to list them.  While I’ve been listening to all this I have been tweeting and retweeting on Twitter.  I’ve had a few new followers today and I’ve gone over the 200 mark.

I’ve got a move coming up in the next 2 or 3 weeks to an absolute rabbit hutch of a bungalow.  I’m very anxious about it.  There is plenty of garden so I am erecting a shed in the back to store my belongings which won’t fit into the bungalow.  Within 4 months it will have paid for itself as the alternative would be to keep my stuff in storage.  I’m worried that the shed might not be big enough, I’m worried about money, and I’m worried that I won’t be able to find the things I want inside the bungalow.

In my planning I am compensating for not having a lot of space in my bungalow by working towards being able to afford a cheap house in Bulgaria.  You can get something really spacious for about 6 or 7 thousand euros, and I’m thinking of taking my stuff over there with me.  I know it seems drastic but it’s the only way I am going to have my own space, and the countryside is lovely.  Without a landlord breathing down my neck there I should have a different experience from my first one, if I own my own property.  I should feel more secure.  I should feel secure here, but I feel doomed to a cramped and impoverished existence.  Maybe it’s my fault and I’m being too negative and ungrateful.  I can’t honestly see how I can make it home though.

I’ve got the Bonzo Dog Doo Dah Band on now, ‘Gorilla’.  Tommy Boyd introduced me to that on his radio programme.

Broomhill House

In my last post I said the regimentalism here was getting me down.  By regimentalism I meant the 10 am get up time and the slots for meals.  Possibly it wasn’t that fair of me to say that because when it comes to it most people are quite flexible, some more than others.  For the time being this is my home, and it’s not really too bad, all things considered.  There is a lot of banter and humour between the staff and between ourselves and the staff.  However, the serious issues remain, it’s just that they are not looked at very often, and I fear that if we tried we might end up feeling the worse for it.  The serious stuff comes out at tribunals.  They said I was grandiose and had pressure of speech.  They said I lacked insight.

As a Christian I believe I need to be kind and forgiving.  That doesn’t seem to be far away from giving the impression that I am complying happily.  But then the guns come out at tribunals, the guns they have trained on me.  Dismissing me as grandiose, for what reason I do not know.  That is the people who sat on the panel.

The worst thing about sleeping here is the plastic mattresses.  Every night I wake up several times too hot and throw the duvet off, and every morning I can feel the sweat pouring off of me, and my hair is plastered to my back.  I’ve been told that my bedroom is next to the one which is right over the boiler, I don’t know if that makes any difference, or if it is just the weather and the building.  My mother says she prefers the cold weather, because if she is too cold she can do something about it, whereas it is a lot harder if you are too hot.  We haven’t got fans or anything, if we had the noise would be a disturbance.

I’ve thought about going back to the place in Sherwood to ask other neighbours if they heard the woman shouting hallelujah above me.  It seems to me that the psychiatrists want to put that down to auditory hallucinations.  I don’t know how they can be so definite without making proper checks, maybe it is just a delusion in their own heads, subsidiary to their own delusions of grandeur and power and importance.

Maybe this is a period of transition for me.  I no longer have my nice flat apart from the neighbours and the bitumen on the floorboards.  I might not get a garden this time.  I wonder how long it is going to take them to come up with a property for me.  People are saying I’m on priority listing, but there must be others as well.  I was told some Salvation Army flats were being withdrawn from people who were living in them and the number 70 was mentioned as the number of people who would be consequentially homeless.  What with that and the present shortage of one bedroom flats I imagine I might have to wait for a very long time before something comes up for me.  The tribunal said something about wanting to have me moving on by July, but I can’t see that happening.  As much as I am trying to be reasonable and understanding and friendly towards people who are really so different from me, I really don’t want to have to make this my home for a long time.  The humour and banter are just distractions from the very important fact that, ultimately, it is a power relationship that I am on the wrong side of.  I have said in the past that this is little more than an open prison.  For me that is true, being on a Section 3.  I hate coming back here when I go out.  I am trying to work on my tendency to see this as a them and us situation, but it is hard.  I have no choice but to be here, I can’t leave if I want to.  People talk about state kidnap in relation to this situation, and that does feel true at the end of the day.

People have looked at my post ‘Striking Poses’ over the last few days, so I re-read it today and still find it relevant.  Let it be noted that I had problems at Macmillan Close even on medication that I am not experiencing here.  My key nurse asked me if the fact that I am not experiencing the same problems here didn’t suggest something about being on medication, but it is not that simple.

Moved!

I moved this afternoon at 2pm.  I had no lunch as everything was packed away, I just had a boiled egg and toast for breakfast, to get rid of the egg that needed using up by today.  I was counting on a roast dinner being provided this evening. but when dinner time came round it was just scrambled egg and baked beans on toast.  People had miscommunicated with me by calling lunch dinner.  The roast was for lunch, and I wasn’t there.  Food is provided for us here on Wednesday and Sunday, the rest of the time is self-catering.

I am worried about my food cupboard as it is just one shelf in a cupboard above the sink, and I can’t reach it.  Everything I have cupboardwise is jam packed onto that one shelf and there is a sink underneath it, so nowhere to put the things I would need to move to get at the things behind them.  Although there are 12 of us to feed ourselves the kitchen is locked longer than it is open and mealtimes are regimented into 1 1/4 hour slots after which the kitchen is locked up again until the next designated hour and a quarter.  If you miss it you can’t just eat later.  That means on days I go to see my mum I might miss two meals, lunch and dinner.

My room’s OK.  It’s got an armchair and en suite shower and toilet.  No rails for towels.

The staff seem friendly and have suggested a way to deal with the cupboard situation ie stand on a step but it’s still not going to solve the problem completely.  There is far too little space and things are likely to fall out if I try to negotiate my way around it.  Enright Close was better, this feels like organised chaos and I resent it already.  Ben is here from Macmillan Close and he is my key nurse.  I’ve got a dripping tap in the bathroom and it is really loud.  I turned it so it wouldn’t drip but it has started dripping again.  This is the stuff nightmares are made of.  I know I’m going to be really anxious here.

On Censorship (in my context).

This morning I had a managers’ hearing at the hospital.  The doctor kept using emotive and demeaning language when talking about me.  He said I was strongly deluded and trying to hide paranoid thoughts, etc.  He said it was unrealistic for me to want to go to Bulgaria, even though I’ve already spent 21 months there.  I’m not sure how his name is spelt, he wouldn’t even tell me when I asked him what part of the world he is from, but he pronounces his name Moldovsky.  When I started reading an R D Laing book it said in the introduction that people have a right not to believe in the term ‘schizophrenia’ and all its baggage, but that if people said they don’t believe in it they are said to lack insight.  He kept saying that about me, and that I was guarded.  I told the managers’ panel about this quotation from R D Laing, but it didn’t change their position.  They have kept me on the section 3.  I was strongly advised by my solicitor this morning not to blog about this place.  Tonight I was invited to play bingo in one of the other bungalows and the man who was in charge slipped the word ‘schitz’ in twice, with no context for it.  If I complain about it I will be told that I am mistaken and that he wouldn’t do something like that.  I am afraid to write because it will bring bad feeling into sharp relief.  I am at Enright Close in Newark.  One of the women asked if he would only speak to her to be cheeky and he said yes.  I don’t know what kind of relationship they have with each other.  I can’t see why he couldn’t let himself be pulled up and say he was sorry.  They don’t take anything seriously except their job to observe us and write about us, and throw food away.  That’s how it feels today.  Given that that might not be too far from the truth, I can’t see how anyone can expect anyone to recover from anything here.  Not even enough respect and security to acknowledge when someone says they are being cheeky.  I’m afraid of it turning really nasty, as it did at Highbury and Macmillan Close.  When it matters, they are not approachable and not accountable.  That is my belief born of experience.  Trying to keep it nice is just hypocrisy, it isn’t nice anyway to keep it that way.

Update 02.11.13 Housing

I have had a letter back from the housing association I registered with and because the council hasn’t accepted me as their responsibility I have only been allocated 45 points instead of 1,545 which I could have.  1000 would come from the council accepting me as statutory homeless, and another 500 would come from where I am now at the hospital if I had provided proof, but proof wasn’t asked for, as far as I remember.  My CPN has said that she will try to get the council to write a letter saying that I am homeless but not their responsibility , that would get me 1000 points.  When I first came to Nottingham I was their responsibility because I had an uncle and a sister in the area, but they have since changed their rules so that you have to have lived in the area for three out of five years to qualify for their help.

The housing association I registered with covers a lot of areas in the north and in the midlands, and I have asked for my 6 areas to be expanded so that I can be offered anything anywhere.  Really I want to move back to London or somewhere like Cornwall, Dorset or Devon, but there aren’t a lot of housing associations which, like this one, you can use independently of the council points system and bidding.  Most of them are linked to the bidding system, so I’m going to have to do some research.

Apparently I can get help with a bond and the first month’s rent if I go private.  I read today that it might be social services’ responsibility to offer me help, but I don’t know what is meant by help.  Maybe I am getting all the help they can give me at the moment.  I am in touch with a team from Framework, my CPN is trying to help me.  I’m not sure what else I could or should expect, or how quickly.  I am in hospital, but it seems it is being treated as temporary accommodation.  Although it is shared bungalows it is still hospital and I would have hoped things might go a bit faster.  I am not eligible to bid anywhere at the moment.  The charity/housing association has said it will not be in touch again unless it can offer accommodation, and that if it can’t offer anything within 6 months I’ll be asked if I want to stay on their list. Obviously I’m hoping to be housed before then.

By deciding to see my problems in the community as completely a product of mental illness the authorities have taken away the home that I had as emergency housing with Nottingham City Council and I now have to start all over again, not eligible to bid anywhere.  In the meantime I am still having to pay £140 every 4 weeks to keep my belongings in storage.  I wish now that I had just let my belongings go, it has cost me so much already and I don’t know if I am going to get a big enough place to accommodate them all.  I asked customer services if I could apply for a house or bungalow with two bedrooms, on the basis of a very small flat I saw in Nottingham, nothing like the one I had in London, and they told me I could if I was prepared to pay the extra.  But the letter I have had from them says I qualify for a one bedroom property and doesn’t even acknowledge the covering letter I sent with my application, so I’m not sure what is happening.

Am I Just Gullible?

What I don’t like about Szasz is his position that we are all entitled to take drugs.  It seems to me that this is a position that people would have good reasons for opposing, and I myself feel that his argument against institutional psychiatry, which I agree with, is undermined by his position on so-called recreational drug use.  We all know about ‘bad trips’ and I don’t know if bad trips would be eradicated if the supply were officially controlled and therefore ‘pure’.  I suppose no one else knows either, and that because of the effects of ‘bad trips’ it isn’t something that could be tested out on scientific research volunteers or paid people, the risks might be too great.  I do not feel as supported by his argument against institutional psychiatry as I would like to feel because of this.  I myself do not have a history of drug use, and cannot say that I know that people with such a history are not helped by psychiatric drugs.  I wish he did not take this position on recreational drugs.

I’ve also never really read or understood any Foucault, I just know he is a big name in French literature, philosophy and politics, and I’m only using those three classifications to make sure all my bases are covered, because to me he is just a name.  I have got a book of Essential Foucault from the library, though, which I intend to read soon, with my other reading.

Also I get confused at the moment because I am feeling more or less OK and that the only thing which is negative about my present existence is that I am having an injection every two weeks.  I do realise that people could say that I am feeling OK because of the injection and not in spite of it, but my feeling of OK is very limited, because I am a lot more inhibited than I was off medication, and hopeful that people in the hospital will see that I am really OK and don’t need to be on drugs.  I can more or less cope socially and feel that I could before as well, even if things could have been interpreted as being more painful.  There is an argument for saying that other things that break down are sent for repair and things added to them to make them work right, so why not me as a person?  But inwardly I am constantly so much hoping that I will be taken off medication, and I resent the abuses I experienced on other wards that led to the decision to restart medication.  Abuses like being told my problem with door slamming was all because of my mental illness, for instance.

I phoned Richard at Macmillan Close yesterday because I was sad it hadn’t worked out and wanted to tell him so and that I thought he had been really kind to me.  I’m sure it was an easier conversation by phone than it might have been face to face.

There are so many things that confuse me in the Bible.  I was just thinking that Paul says to submit to authority and to obey every law instituted among men for the Lord’s sake.  But Peter and the apostles were told not to preach anymore in the Name of Jesus and Peter told them they should obey the Lord and not men, and preached anyway and got flogged, and imprisoned, and an angel let him out in the dead of night.  I suppose again it is just a matter of confidence or of no confidence whichever of these church leaders give to any one of their people at any time, or opinion as to which they preach to a congregation.  Yet they say obey your leaders as if they really have a divine right.  You can only go so far in obeying your leaders.  Surely honesty recognises that their own denomination probably exists because they or someone before them did not obey a leader?

Mish-Mash Musings 2

In my last post I wrote about how the Church, during the Inquisition, used to ‘relax’ people into the hands of the state so they could be burnt, and wrote about the parallel drawn by Thomas Szasz between this and the mental health movement.  He said that in a religious age ‘heretics’ were ‘relaxed’ into the hands of the state, but in the so-called enlightened age the parallel is that society turns to the mental health movement for the upholding of the dominant culture.  However, the Church is part of the society which does this, and does it itself.  So for the mental patient who is also a Christian, there is no ‘comfort’ for them in religion.  The mental health system is part of the new way of dealing with ‘heretics’ for the church.  The church believes in this, or says it does, and largely it accords the mental health system the same authority as the rest of society does, except for some people.  It might decide that some people are really not mentally ill and try to help them, but on the whole it validates the mental health system and its ideas.  So someone like me can become very isolated since the Church refers me back to the mental health services.  Admittedly I have not been to every existing church, but the ones that have been part of my life to date have all said the same thing, that they believe I am mentally ill, so accepting the categorisation in the first place.  Many other religious bodies do the same thing.  Scientology does not.  I have only recently discovered that Thomas Szasz had links with Scientology.  For some people this will put them off him, but there are others who hold the some of same views who do not have those links, the writers and editors of This Is Madness, for instance, and Foucault, and R D Laing.  R D Laing was ridiculed for turning to Buddhism, apparently.  I was told this by one of the nurses on Rowan 2, I think, and they said how ironic it was that the psychiatric system is itself now looking towards things like mindfulness as a way of raising people’s consciousness.  They wouldn’t call it raising people’s consciousness, but essentially that is what it is.

I’m not on Rowan 2 at the moment, I was transferred to Newark on Friday night. It is a place like Macmillan Close, complete with door slamming!  I’m not sure how I feel and I hope it is not a matter of my choice, because there are pros and cons with both.  I was told at 6.30 pm on Friday evening that the transfer was going to be made and that I had no right to refuse.  Steve, who was on duty, told me it was only temporary and that I am expected to go back some time this week, citing my housing situation and residence in Nottingham a a reason for me going back.  However, the staff in Newark are under the impression that I am here long term and that housing can be dealt with from here.  I’m confused and feel very disorientated.  I said I didn’t want to come because I don’t know Newark, and that seems to me a good reason at the moment.  I have been homeless 2 years now, Friday was the anniversary, and it can’t be good for me to keep being so uprooted.

Mish-Mash Musings

I’m not sure why I have called this Mish-Mash Musings except that I know where I am going to start but not where I am going to finish, which I suppose is OK if I’m not writing an essay but a blog entry, and not hoping to make Freshly Pressed (though I would love to).  I feel like trashing this already and starting again, but I never trash anything I write, so I’m afraid it rests.

The place I am going to start is with an incident I read about in a book called ‘The Manufacture of Madness’ By Thomas Szasz.  The book compares the mental health movement (his term, not mine) with the Inquisition.  It says that the two things are the same, in that first they decided what one was (heretic, witch, mentally ill person) then they went looking for them and treating them as their law allows/requires/demands.  With heretics and witches under the Inquisition he talks about the church ‘relaxing’ heretics out of its own hands into the hands of the law and legal process – a bit like the Jews did with Jesus, because they had no law to put a man to death (see also John 16:2, “Anyone who kills you will think he is offering a service to God”).

In psychiatry, if the psychiatrist says you are mentally ill and you say otherwise, it is said that you lack insight.  I know this and Thomas Szasz also says so.  He has us down as the people that are called paranoid schizophrenics.  This has definitely been my experience.  Under the Inquisition unrepentant heretics were burned alive, while those who changed their minds were strangled and then burned.  The incident a read about the other day talked about a man who, faced with the fire, said that he would convert himself to the faith of Jesus Christ, and that this was apparently a time of great rejoicing for the inquisitors, where the hugged him and welcomed him back into the arms of the church, then immediately afterwards they had him strangled and burnt.  Thomas Szasz draws the same parallel with psychiatry.  I’m not sure if Thomas Szasz wanted to see an end to all psychiatry or only the enforced kind, but he did say in this book that the inquisitors didn’t want too many heretics to be burnt whereas they shouldn’t have been burning any at all.  The Inquisition was torture, and Thomas Szasz says that so is psychiatry.  That has certainly been my experience.  He talks about having the idea of mental illness accepted by the popular mind, just as heresy used to be so feared and so treated/punished.  Both the Inquisition and psychiatry had two purposes, one for the protection of society and the other for the ‘good’ of the accused/patient.  By putting the word ‘good’ in inverted commas I am staying true to the message and spirit of the book, as well as owing the inverted commas as my own.

I have been reading quite a bit about Transactional Analysis as well.  I’ve read (again) Games People Play by Eric Berne MD, the founder of TA, and I’ve Just started reading I’m OK, You’re OK by Thomas A Harris MD.  Dr Harris points out in the opening pages of his book that not only do the words Parent, Adult, Child have different meanings from usual in this context, but so does the word OK, so I’m looking forward to reading this book to the end.  I didn’t read it when it first became popular because a Church I was in said the message was untrue to Christianity which says we all need redemption because we are not OK.  There is also a chapter in the book about this approach to human relationships in the context of morality, which is a chapter I am looking forward to reading.  Dr Harris advises against just dipping in or reading the end first as understanding is established and built on from beginning to end.

This Is Madness

I’ve read a bit more of this book and I’m finding it very interesting.  For me one of the most important things it says is that with physical illnesses diagnosis starts with something happening in the body and ends up with the diagnostic concept, but with ‘so-called’ mental illness it is the other way round, that it starts with a concept and mental conglomeration in the minds of physicians and they then go looking for people who fit the concept, like crusaders.  The concept is fleshed out in committee and applied to individuals, rather than subjective symptoms first being recognised in the individual and a remedy sought.  That is my memory of what was said in the chapter called ‘Diagnosis’.

I’ve just ordered another book as well called ‘Untrain Your Parrot’ by Elizabeth Hamilton.  It is a well grounded and often humorous approach to Zen.  The book is in the Multi-Faith room at the hospital but we are not allowed to take them out, and sometimes no one is there who can unlock the cabinet where the books are kept.  It makes sense that the books shouldn’t leave the room, it keeps them available and in good condition.  I have found that when I have spent time reading it in there I approach things in a better and lighter mood.  I’m looking forward to having my own copy because I think it is something that I will read and dip into more than once

I’m a lot more open and self-controlled on the ward these days, but I still feel angry, hurt and frustrated at what I see happening with other people.

I’ve got a bad cold at the moment.

We have started making approaches to accommodation.  It seems to me it could move either very quickly or more slowly than I would like.  I would like it to move quickly.

I’ve been reading a few ‘Freshly Pressed’ selections and really enjoying them.  They are so interesting.  I just read one called ‘There was no escaping his father’s words’ which made quite an impact on me.  It’s about a man who meets up in later life with his father who had told him that he was going from fad to fad and I felt those words from his father had partly shaped the man’s life.

I don’t feel able to write much more today.  I am generally feeling quite upset and that I need to cry.  That is what I usually feel inside.  I’ve had no intimacy for a very long time now, and I feel very much that I am getting old.  I am nearer death than birth.  For a wonderful period in my 30s I was unafraid, but now I feel a bit wobbly.  I’m not sure if I’m a real Christian, and I have been taught and believe that only Christians go to heaven.  I have not been taught to be a liberal, and my emotional attachments don’t really allow it.  I have been taught, and believe, that there is a hell for people who are not Christians.  I know to some people that will make me sound really archaic.  I have found myself praying that love and mercy will be my judge in the end, that love (God is love) will save me at death.  There is also the teaching that not everyone will die but Jesus will come back and some people who are living will be caught up to Heaven.  I suppose many people want to believe they will be among those who do not die.  I would like to live beyond 80, even to 100.  I’m afraid I will die much sooner.  I’m really afraid that I might go to hell, and I’m afraid that there will be no one who cares for me intimately when I die.  I have no children and no partner, and the only member of my family I am in contact with is my mother.  I would like not to feel so tired and worn out, and upset and vulnerable, and as if my time now is not worth anything and won’t be, that I have passed a point where there was a point.

Another Shouting Match

Tonight, for as I write it was tonight, just 1/2 an hour ago since it started, thought by the time I finish writing it will be last night, I’ve just been involved in a confrontation with staff and a patient.  This is what happened.

It is now a minute past midnight, so it happened last night now.  One of the rowdiest people on the ward has just started singing.  I don’t appreciate it.  It is Kerry.  I feel weak and undermined for not daring to tell her to stop, and no one else will.

I tried to have an early night, and for ages I wasn’t able to sleep.  Too hot and restless.  Eventually, around 10pm, I put some meditation music on, and I fell asleep to that.  Soon after it finished People started shouting in their rooms, to themselves, but loudly and angrily.  I don’t think it was anything to do with my music.  There were two of them.  I don’t think this time Kerry was one of them.  I was annoyed because I had been woken up, and I have been absorbing this most of the time for about a week.  Absorbing it has affected me and my level of well-being.  I have felt tired and very upset and lifeless.  The shouting, and the door-slamming, have been horrific.

I shouted back, told them to stop, I was trying to sleep.  I said they were making everyone feel so good, and finally I said one of them was mad.  That is the kind of thing I have had from the staff.  I am vulnerable and impressionable and exhausted.

Some of the staff came round and started having a go at me, saying I should have compassion, people were ill, and people were trying to sleep.  I said I was trying to sleep but I got woken up.  When they adopt a tone and attitude to me the best I can do for myself is shout back, and I found myself out of control in the same way the other women were, but from me it was not tolerated.  Alex said I was unbelievable and it wasn’t worth talking to me.  That’s when I lost control.  I said they were unbelievable, that if this could happen in here it can also happen in the community, but because I have said it is happening in the community I’ve been told it is all in my head and I have had what was my home taken from me because I am in hospital.  They kept telling me I was shouting, but they were confrontational or dismissive and not letting me finish sentences and walking away in contempt.  M involved herself again, saying she was going to call the police and I was waking everyone up and I should be in prison, and she got the ‘darling’ treatment, whereas I was vilified.  I had Alex saying I had a high level of understanding.  She had been telling me there are some ill people on the ward, and I had asked her why she was telling me that as if I was not a psychiatric patient.  She said it was because I had a high level of understanding.  I said just because I have a high level of understanding doesn’t mean I can go on absorbing the rubbish while they normally sit in their office and do nothing about it, other people shouting and screaming and slamming doors.  I’ve started yelling at people to stop because the nurses don’t normally do anything about them, the same as they have left me to shout myself hoarse and upset.  She kept going on about finding it almost impossible to work with me, but there are things she doesn’t want to hear, because I start talking and she talks over me.  Kevin did it as well.  One of them said they were warning me.  How come even when I am upset at being woken up and trying to deal with it in the only way I felt I could, rightly or wrongly, wrongly obviously, I’ve got it from the way I have been dealt with, I am the only one of all the people who are upset who gets short shrift?  Keven said he couldn’t tell what I was saying because I was shouting,but I can tell what people are saying when they shout, and when I lowered my voice he started talking over me, so I raised it again to be heard, then he told me I was shouting.  When I said about doors being slammed hard Alex said the doors don’t shut quietly, as if we hadn’t already had a conversation where I had complained about Kerry and Alex had acknowledged that a lot of other people had complained.  My door closes quietly.  Here on Rowan 2, Highbury Hospital, Nottingham, I am being victimised and am on the wrong side of favouritism.  It doesn’t work for me.

I’m not going to commit suicide.  But some people would.  I don’t want to be driven like this just because people judge (perhaps) that there is no risk of suicide.  If I get distressed to the point of being beside myself and enraged I don’t want these confrontations from the people who have been responsible for it, trying to make out I am a special case and have more understanding than the average psychiatric patient.  Alex says she has often said she doesn’t think I should be here.

Bad Afternoon on Rowan 2

Jim has been on for the last two days.  I asked him if I could talk to him and it didn’t materialise either day.  When faced with situations which aren’t presented to him as talking he seems to have two modes with me – one is slightly crazy friendliness – tongue -poking, winking, etc, and the other is grabbing me by the arm and making me go wherever he wishes.  I think I have had another bruise left on my arm today.  I have quite a nice collection.  The one on my stomach remains the most pronounced, from being kicked.

This afternoon Re started on me, being rude, saying I had been kicked in last week and to shut my mouth.  I had forgotten that she had been there and wondered where she was getting it from.  Kiran came out from behind us at the noise and Re started to spin her a yarn and she said ‘I know, darling’.  Jim came out and told her she could go outside (it was my understanding that he asked/told her to move away, and she did.  But then she came back on the phone and I got upset and I thought he had asked her to move for my sake, so I started getting really wound up and they came out and told me if I didn’t calm down I would have to leave the ward.  They might have said I could.  I said something and Jim grabbed me angrily and started forcing me up the corridor.  I think Tracy was involved, Sean was definitely involved, and they grabbed me roughly, and I can’t remember what I was saying but they wouldn’t listen.  I know I said that when I was upset there was a reason, but that one minute they were nice and the next they were doing that to me.  I said they were the ones who were schizophrenic.  I hope there are people reading this who recognise the reason in what I said.

I wanted to go to the toilet, and I told them and they told me the toilet in the corridor was open.  It wasn’t.  I told them I had no money to go anywhere and they wouldn’t open the door.  I confronted Kiran with what she had said and she said she didn’t have to discuss it.  I said she had a duty to discuss something she had done which was an issue to me with my care.  I believe she has a personal duty if not a moral one.  When I got back later they were playing laughing, giggling hostesses.  I said if they wouldn’t discuss it with me then I will tell who I like how I like, and that I chose blogging.  While having dinner I was saying stuff about abuse and assaults and that in any other situation than a mental hospital or a prison I would be told that my first concern should be my own safety and that I should get out or get a restraining order against the perpetrators.  I seem to remember you can do that with the police these days, though I don’t know in what circumstances.

In the meantime I went outside and met the boyfriend of one of the other patients, and he let me literally cry on his shoulder.  I ended up going to the multi-faith room and Katya was there.  We had quite a stormy time.  I felt angry with her for what I felt to be her broad brush approach.  I can’t by any means remember everything we said.  We did a meditation at the end, and I wondered if in any circumstances a meditation with one person would permit them to cry and scream and come out the other side feeling washed, not repressed.  It said something about noticing the sensations in your body and not judging them, and at that point I asked if it would be OK to cry and scream.  I talked about repressing emotions being a way of judging them, because if you didn’t judge them you would just let them happen, even insist on them and your right to express them, as in other situations where social steps forward have taken place.

I went back for dinner and it was as I have said.  Katya had talked about fighting fire with fire and how it wasn’t good, and I said that was the staff, in their relationship with me.  I said I wanted to go out and asked for someone to open my door.  I demanded it, as far as I dared, rather than asked.  Tracy said she would come.  I said I was going to find out whether or not I had an obligation to go back on the ward since I had been forced off.  She wanted to talk reasonably, she said, but I told her I didn’t want to, that you can’t go from being unreasonable to reasonable whenever you felt like it.  I She said when I tried to find out if I had an obligation to go back on the ward to make sure that I told them I wasn’t the innocent party.  She just walked away, went into the clinic room and slammed the door locked behind her.

I talked to my ‘Old Wife’ who very kindly let me have a cup of tea on the house.  Both she and Katya said I should go to the Women’s Centre.  I phoned the police afterwards and asked them if I had an obligation to go back under the circumstances, and they told me there was no bar on me going back and I could go back when I liked.

But I have to go back to the same possibility of abuse and assault all the time.  In any other situation I could walk away and never go back, if I chose to deal with it that way, with impunity.  I’ve had verbal assaults and abuse from staff and patients, but the only physical assaults I’ve had really apart from last week were from staff.  My section is supposed to be coming to an end this week.  I don’t know what they are trying to do with that.  I really would feel safer on the streets.  At least I would have my benefits back, and be able to pay two lots of storage every 28 days without feeling it so much.

I can’t have special people on the staff, i can’t try to make friends of them, because the truth is that when I need them they are either not there for me or they lose it for some reason, regardless of former tongue poking and winking.  Jim did that because he felt like it.  He was really angry and he turned that into an assault he could rationalise professionally, to other people if not to himself.  Terry was on the ward.

Tracy acts as if she is the one who has a right to offendedly and pettishly disengage and not talk.  She walks away and leaves you in pieces behind her.  for me she leaves me wanting to get my own back.  I think the patient has a right to disengage from nurses or staff they don’t get on with, but these people are betraying relationships all over the place.  They overheated and dragged me and pushed me out, with no money and wanting to go to the toilet.  They left me crying on someone else.  When I turned round a nurse was watching me from inside, and walked away as soon as I turned round.

If you express concern for these people and their personal circumstances they take it for granted.  If you don’t who knows what they think, but you might feel less human, until met with a situation like this.  I feel very human in my hatred and distress at the moment, and my deep rage and anger, and hopelessness.  I said to Katya that I wanted to laugh but that there was nothing to laugh about, that it would be belittling it.  I said if they are going to call me mentally ill they should do something to make me feel better and give me hope, not give reasons for considering suicide.  I have something in my religious background that says that suicide is the ultimate act of manipulation, so I feel guilty saying that.  I feel I know better, but I can see no way out of this.   In ordinary situations of abuse and assault you are told that in no way is it your fault, but this is different, we are told.  ‘If you don’t we will have to’.  Like, ‘look what you made me do’, ‘I had no option’.

I listened to Blake 7 last night on Radio 4 Extra.  That was interesting.  It  could have been written about me.  It says rebellion is not a malfunction, but an imperative.  The woman says she hates the system and she doesn’t want to rejoin, that it has murdered her friends and robbed her of her identity.  This is just sci-fi, but it is more than that.  For me it is serious.

What is happening to me in the hospital is demeaning, degrading and dehumanising.  It isn’t about being friends with the staff.  I don’t want their so-called solutions.  I would happily be friends with some of these people, but they are unavailable for friendship, both ethically and by nature of what they do, professionally and not so professionally.  I’ve said it is like living in a gangland and that I would not choose to have such people in my life, and nor have I chosen to be there, but that there is no support or protection.  I don’t act like most of these people and don’t want to.  People have started calling on Norma around me.  I feel like the new Norma.  She said the other day that people should speak to her because she was not allowed to speak or to shout.  She is very quiet these days, i hardly hear her at all, and she used to be very voluble.

I am a victim.  I do not have a victim mentality.  I want to leave and repair my life.  I do not have a victim mentality.  Any more than any other abused group has had.  They have been made victims by other people.  They wave Section papers at you and use it as a cover for all kinds of abuse.

They don’t take Kerry off when she is being violent and abusive or behaving in ways people don’t like.  They let her get on with it.  One of the women who had a go at me last night then got nice had a go at me again today, and stuck her middle finger up at me as I was pushed off the ward.  Tonight she is not going to get such an easy reconciliation, if she wants one.  For me it is heartbreaking, because I didn’t do this to other patients when I first came on the ward, but people who didn’t know me then and how active I was in speaking out are doing it to me.  It seems obvious to me, though it might sound ludicrous, that the staff wanted to use me or silence me, while at the same time ‘treating me as though I am schizophrenic’.  It is obvious to me that they don’t like what is happening and the representations on TV and radio, but they don’t want to acknowledge any of it to say they were wrong about me.  It is hypocrisy and terrifying abuse.

Kicked in the stomach

Today has been a day from hell.  Kerry had a go at me again, staff didn’t help, it escalated, they wanted ME to go to my room, at lunchtime, 30 minutes before I was due to see my psychologist, they brought medication, after 6 women, at least one of which had been nagging me in the dining room to calm down, had been standing around in the corridor near my room.  I said I didn’t want medication, that I wanted to speak to my psychologist with a clear head, and they said if I was shouting I wasn’t going to see him, so I accepted oral medication so that, if unchallenged, I could pretend to swallow it then spit it out.  I decided to hang around the communal area so that he couldn’t be sent away in my absence.

Kerry kicked me in the stomach this afternoon.  I have been told by one of the young students that even if I report it, because it is an acute psychiatric ward, I might not be separated from the threat.  I hope she is wrong.  The staff mismanagement of this has caused this situation.  Yet I feel it is my fault.  I had my door locked on Saturday, for the first time since being there, then told myself my suspicions were racism and my objection to her trolling outside my window was the same.  I told myself she had been risk-assessed and that she would not be on the ward if she was a threat to other patients.  I am tired this evening and have kept bursting into tears.  I feel even if I were to press charges successfully it would be a sign of failure on my part.  As a Christian.  There are no adequate words for my distress and desolation and fear at the moment.

Update 22.07.2013

Last night nurses were up and down the corridor all night switching lights on and off.  I heard them with other people but not me.  They didn’t turn mine on.  This morning shortly before 7 Sharon positioned herself outside my door and spoke in a jeering voice.  Last night Sandra, a nurse I haven’t mentioned yet, kept starting her speech on a note I had used just before finishing mine.  She often starts on the last note and last week one day she kept using the last words of my utterances.  I have thought of this in terms of NLP, neuro-linguistic programming.  As I came out this evening and asked Terry to open the door for me I am sure that Alex, a female nurse, spoke straight after me in my rhythm deliberately.  Just before I was restarted on medication she was mimicking me at least one night but denied it when confronted with it.  She was present when I was told I was going to be restarted and I talked about risk and she said the risks I was afraid of were unlikely.  I said that didn’t mean anything and that they were possible and that she should stop hiding from it by using those terms and say every time she told someone they were going to be forced to take medication that serious side effects are a possibility.  Does that make me a bully?  I fear it might.  Am I a bully writing like this on my blog?  A few weeks ago the ward manager told me that if I didn’t remove names from my blog then they had been advised by their legal time that they could do it themselves.  I heard something on the radio yesterday about a right to confront service and trades people who deal badly with you.  I think it was set in 2025 though and am not sure if that law exists at the moment.  I’m sure it must.  This is a safe way to do it without involving verbal and physical confrontation.

All I want to do at the moment is cry.  My eyes are black with held back emotion and the repeated shock of being vocally tagged and mimicked and having no way to deal with it.  I have begun to think my problem with it is my fault because I should know better how to deal with it without getting precious about it, but it isn’t something i should have to deal with anyway.  The people I am happy to trust are the people who have not done this to me, or who used to and have stopped.  That makes about 4 people, off the top of my head.  It is something I experience as so aggressive and violent that my facial muscles feel as if they are spastic as this is imprinted on my fragile psyche.

Last week I said to someone that it is inhuman to keep me in hospital as long as I have been kept in knowing I have no home and no visitors, and that I have felt they have taken advantage of my situation.  There is at least one other person that I know feels as emotionally wretched as I do.  I asked my psychologist if we were allowed to touch each other today, if I could be hugged if I felt I needed it and he said no, it might be OK with a woman.  I asked what if i were lesbian, or just didn’t care?  I then pointed out that I have no relationships that are supportive in this way, that the only really contact I have is hospital care.  We talked about something quite difficult today.  I didn’t go out this morning.  The hospital is my home, and home is a place I want to spend time.  I didn’t know how to approach today at all, whether to go out or stay in.  It was like wading through mud.  I got fed up with myself because I felt it was me that was making it that way, that I was making it heavy weather, but what else could I have made it?

We had no water in our basins from Friday afternoon to this afternoon.  Someone said something about E-Coli.  It’s been a difficult weekend in that respect.  We had showers, but the hassle involved in trying to wash my hair would have been too great.  When I told Gareth, my psychologist, about the shower and what I have to do to wash my hair he seemed appalled.  He said that a bath or a shower is a soothing thing and that that was what we needed, and that I shouldn’t trivialise my dissatisfaction about it.

I find the mimicry and the intimidation/invalidation that goes with it should i try to say anything about it drives every thought and ability to communicate out of my head.  I had things I wanted to say but I have forgotten so many of them.  And when I write like this, as I am in this paragraph, I feel as if I am just being moany and pathetic.

I had a review with Dr Bradshaw, my psychiatrist, last week.  She is talking about trying to find me accommodation and starting me on a community treatment order.  The psychiatrist in the community is a Dr Cheetham.  She is on maternity leave at the moment.  I understand that when she spoke to me last year she recommended that I not be treated against my wishes.

It has been so hot here, as across the country.  I feel so miserable.  I don’t know how much of my tiredness is down to medication.  I have slept almost all the way through dinner time two days running.  Last night I didn’t sleep well.  Last night one of the patients had their name called as if it were a dog’s name, and she immediately got up and responded.  I believe I know that feeling, it is so visceral the safest thing you can do with it is stuff it down.  It was literally like hearing a dog being called.  She hadn’t come the first time.

Esther

She looks at me as if she despises me, every time I see her.  It makes my head feel as if it is being held in a cloud of sedation and I start to feel tearful and like wanting to scream, and I have no way to process all that.  It doesn’t go away, it stays with me.  My housing advocate said she looked at her as if she was angry because she was in her way.  I told her, I get that all the time from her.  If you say anything they don’t take your side and it isn’t helpful to mention it.  I hesitate to say they take each other’s side and all get on your case, because I haven’t really put it to the test.

I was thinking the other day, we have different experiences of our relationship and different approaches.  The staff and I, that is, not Esther and I.  The staff and patients, really.  For the staff, they work with us, and go home.  We have to live with them, no way out.

They talk about flattened affect, but it is our relationship with them,including the constant threat outside, that causes the flattened affect, in my opinion.  And anyway, why is ‘affect’ so important?  What about not being ruled by ‘affect’ and letting your mind come into play?  People are frightened to show their emotions in an unequal relationship.  Either that, or they use them to manipulate, or try and change things whereas the other party wants to keep it as it is.  Try and be yourself in the face of a person in power in close proximity who is telling you you are something negative you believe you are not.  They look as if they feel threatened by your confidence and that bodes badly for you when they are the decision makers in your life.

 

Today at Macmillan Close

We just moved back (three of us) to our own house on the close after we had to move out two weeks ago for decorators.  Can’t see much difference myself.  It smells of paint and one of my windows has been repaired.

Last week I wrote Dr Leaske, my psychiatrist, a long letter explaining that I thought my diagnosis should be more around trauma and grief and menopause.  I was hoping he wouldn’t renew the section 3 (I thought he wouldn’t anyway) but he did, and he wasn’t at all impressed when I said that I wasn’t violent and that the things from the community were just malicious slander.  He said he had to take them into account.  So white van man with a nasty streak is allowed to dictate the decisions made about my life.  Dr Leaske talked about building up trust, but really it all seems to be required one way.  Even when I gave my word that I would continue to take the poison if he didn’t put me on another section he wouldn’t accept it.

After we moved this morning I had an appointment with my key nurse.  All the time she was talking and reading me my rights, all I wanted to do was cry.  I believe that would be more healing than any drugs they gave me. She didn’t seem to pick up on that though.  Some nurses vent around me, reacting in not their normal voices when I open my mouth and sound relaxed.  One man actually shouts out, like ‘oh’, effectively.  I find that shocking and frightening.  Also abusive.  It is like psychological rape.  I know I’ve said all this before but this saga continues and elicits the same feelings.  It’s control and domination, and its unprofessional, I think.

I feel what they are doing to me despises me as a human and a woman in grief and menopause.  In spite of the fact that he (my psychiatrist) reduced my medication and agreed to let me come off it and see how I got on, they are still defining me and controlling me as before.  I feel normal and happy and positive, under the grief, if they would just leave me alone.  He wants me to see a psychologist/psychotherapist.  We are at loggerheads but I feel as if I am having to come round to seeing some things his way in spite of that.  I don’t want to deal with my situation under the auspices of the mental health system.

Possible Side Effects of Abilify (Aripiprazole)

This is my medication and the leaflet in the box lists these possible side effects:

Common side effects (affects 1-10 users in 100) uncontrollable twitching or jerking movements, headache, tiredness, nausea, vomiting, an uncomfortable feeling in the stomach, constipation, increased production of saliva, light-headedness, trouble sleeping, restlessness, feeling anxious, sleepiness, shaking and blurred vision.

Uncommon side effects ( affects 1-10 users in 1,000) some people may feel dizzy, especially when getting up from a lying or sitting position, or may experience a fast heart rate.

The following side effects have been reported since the marketing of ABILIFY (sic) but the frequency for them to occur is not known:

Changes in the levels of some blood cells;

unusual heart beat, sudden unexplained death, heart attack;

allergic reaction (e.g. swelling in the mouth, tongue, face and throat, itching, rash);

high blood sugar, onset or worsening of diabetes, ketoacidosis (ketones in the blood and urine) or coma, low sodium level in the blood;

weight gain, weight loss, anorexia;

nervousness, agitation, feeling anxious;

thoughts of suicide, suicide attempt and suicide;

speech disorder, seizure, combination of fever, muscle stiffness, faster breathing, sweating, reduced consciousness and sudden changes in blood pressure and heart rate;

fainting, high blood pressure, blood clots in the veins especially in the legs (symptoms include swelling, pain and redness in the leg), which may travel through blood vessels to the lungs causing chest pain and difficulty in breathing (if you notice any of these symptoms, seek medical advice immediately);

spasm of the muscles around the voice box, accidental inhalation of food with risk of pneumonia, difficulty in swallowing;

inflammation of the pancreas, inflammation of the liver, yellowing of the skin and white part of eyes, reports of abnormal liver test values, abdominal and stomach discomfort, diarrhoea;

skin rash and sensitivity to light, unusual hair loss or thinning, excessive sweating; stiffness or cramps, muscle pain, weakness;

involuntary loss of urine, difficulty in passing urine;

prolonged and/or painful erection;

difficulty controlling core body temperature or overheating, chest pain, and swelling of hands, ankles or feet.

Adolescents 15 years and older experienced side effects that were similar in frequency and type to those in adults except that sleepiness and uncontrollable twitching or jerking movements were very common (greater than 1 in 10 patients) and dry mouth, increased appetite, and feeling dizzy, especially when getting up from a lying or sitting position, were common.

In elderly patients with dementia, more fatal cases have been reported while taking aripiprazole.  in addition, cases of  stroke or “mini” stroke have been reported.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~//~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

If the symptoms listed are really seen as possible side effects I don’t like the fact that such chances are being taken with my physical health and even my life, no matter how slight the possibilities.  Twitching and jerking are symptoms of tardive dyskinesia, which in the case of Jenelle (see the last link on my Essential Links page) has put her in a wheelchair and is thought by doctors to be irreversible.

It is almost as if listing them in this way makes it OK to take the chances.  But as someone on this drug (and others act like it) I think it is dishonest and the worst kind of bullying to be told that this will improve my quality of life while these side effects, some of them resulting in death or incapacity, are possible.  Most of the time they can’t be bothered with us and they are not interested in how we feel or what we have to say.  That is the truth.  Psychologically and relationally they, among others, have abandoned us even while they have a duty of care.  They force these drugs on us while ignoring our requests and assertions that other things are the problem and there are better and different and less harmful and more effective answers and therapies.

Symptoms of Schizophrenia

Someone on Facebook gave me the link to this useful list.  I decided to tack on the end that PTSD is said to “mimic” schizophrenia.  I would say all of these ‘early warning signs’ could equally be a part of post traumatic experience.

“Schizophrenia is a challenging disorder that makes it difficult to distinguish between what is real and unreal, think clearly, manage emotions, relate to others, and function normally.” “The most common early warning signs of schizophrenia include:
Social withdrawal
Hostility or suspiciousness
Deterioration of personal hygiene
Flat, expressionless gaze
Inability to cry or express joy
Inappropriate laughter or crying
Depression
Oversleeping or insomnia
Odd or irrational statements
Forgetful; unable to concentrate
Extreme reaction to criticism
Strange use of words or way of speaking

http://www.helpguide.org/mental/schizophrenia_symptom.htm#conditions

Conditions that can look like schizophrenia

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) — PTSD is an anxiety disorder that can develop after exposure to a traumatic event, such as military combat, an accident, or a violent assault. People with PTSD experience symptoms that are similar to schizophrenia. The images, sounds, and smells of PTSD flashbacks can look like psychotic hallucinations. The PTSD symptoms of emotional numbness and avoidance can look like the negative symptoms of schizophrenia.

Christmas

Have I mentioned that word yet?

Happy Christmas to my readers, and thank you for reading my rubbish – most of it is that.

I joined Facebook last night in an attempt to find a band which is no longer there.  I have 15 friends, about 3 or 4 of which I recognise.  I just put through all my aol contacts on a page without un-checking any of the boxes.  After the first page I clicked ‘skip’ and wasn’t able to recall the other contacts to send out as friend requests.  The friends that came through came through so fast I thought they must be on automatic accept, reject later mode, if there is such a thing.

Today I cooked a chickpea curry with onion, green pepper and tomato.  It was very nice.  I’ve been reading, which has alternately felt like denial and also felt good for me.  I’ve got two books on the go at the moment.  I have started Catch-22 (of course, bit masculine), and today I also started, and am now reading, Ernest Hemingway, A Farewell to Arms, which I am really enjoying.  Catch-22 I have found funny but it is beginning to get darker, shocking in places, to me.  Like the bit I just read today that obeying orders trumps being able to go home after so many missions and that if they refused to obey they would be shot.  I don’t know how serious that is at this point.  It could be just someone being nasty and on a power trip that ultimately ends with words.

I feel like Scrooge (except that I don’t have a workforce that I am mistreating).  I haven’t bought any presents, I have given a few cards.

Julie is still not talking to me and is slamming doors.  I left a card for her by her cupboard. I suppose she just found it because the response was a lot of angry door slamming.  I wish I hadn’t bothered.  It’s put me against her again.  I don’t know what I was expecting, but I wasn’t expecting that.  It is so violent it makes me want to hit back.  I feel violated, literally.  It sends my thoughts reeling and jumbled all over the place, it is like psychological and emotional acid.  It is so violent that I feel groggy and get thoughts come into my mind that are nothing to do with me and make no sense.  Words suggest themselves out of nowhere, as if physically put into my mind.

There is a character in Catch-22, Hungry Joe, shouting himself hoarse at noises and screaming nightly at nightmares.  I feel a bit like him, but I don’t scream now, I have to keep it all inside.  I think Julie must have been really hurt by something which might not have anything to do with me.

This blog entry is worth reading.  Julian talks about a spiritual crisis experience where he realised we are all divine, that was treated as psychosis.  It speaks for itself, it is a serious bit of reading, if you want to read something which is going to speak to you and engage you.  Please read it.  I found it fascinating.

As he says, the enforcing of drugs ignores what has formed the person and everything they are apart from their inability to handle a crisis.  He says he wasn’t ready for the spiritual experience, that he wasn’t grounded (he was also taking drugs at the time, which might have triggered the experience too early for him).

One thing he said which frightens me is that, after prolonged use of anti-psychotics, the pre-frontal lobe atrophies.  I believe it.  I’m not sure that damage can be reversed, though it might be possible to find ways of trying to compensate for it.

Keep The Faith

What does that mean?  When you are woken up at 6.30 in the morning with repeated door slamming and you feel so desperate and isolated that you feel you have no one and nothing to turn to but your blog, which you seem to have made your forever friend?

I shouted at her to stop and she wouldn’t.  Eventually I got out of bed to see who it was and it was Zara and when I told her to stop again she told me to fuck off.  I said ‘you fuck off’, and she kept going.  I’ve said before, our doors don’t slam like that left to themselves, so it seems to be deliberate.  I was shouting so much that two male staff members came to my room and they seem to have this thing about always insisting on the last word.  They aren’t allowed in without permission.  I’m wondering why they thought it was necessary to send in two men. There was a woman with them, but she didn’t speak and I didn’t see her.  They seemed offended that I saw it as intimidation.

Anyway, apparently Zara apologised, but if it had meant anything she wouldn’t have continued, as she has.  My experience just before the slam every time tells me there is definitely a ‘psychic’ element to what I am experiencing and maybe to what they are doing.  I called her a violent, two-faced rabbit.

I’ve been in my room almost all day.  I went down at lunchtime and Julie, who won’t talk to me, did her usual thing of coming into the kitchen behind me, banging something sharply then starting to hum.  It outrages my mind and hurts me emotionally.

Zara is leaving on Thursday.  Maybe she is just giving it large.  But in the meantime I feel quite battered and emotionally raped.  I’ve been told I can have her room when she leaves.  Yesterday she very kindly showed me her room and said I could ask for it.  I had no idea, given the size of mine, that it could be so big.  It;s got 3 chests of drawers, a big wardrobe with shelves and loads of space.

I still feel as if I am being precious, saying things like I feel battered and emotionally raped.  Have I decided to be angry, or is it a response I can’t help in the circumstances?  If I had gone down might it have sorted things out a bit?  If I had taken the brave step of putting audible music on in the first place instead of just listening through my earphones, might I have felt better and would it have helped calm things?  Oh yes, men were shouting at me to shut up.  I just remembered when I heard a man cough outside.  It is exactly like Sherwood was, though Dr Jaffer said it was all in my head, and hence I am being force-fed anti-psychotic drugs.

I feel as if I am burning, inside and out, and that I don’t even have enough strength and confidence to have a shower.  I feel too weak.  I’m hungry, but I feel too distressed and afraid and embarrassed to go down and eat.  I’m hungry but I have no appetite.

When the staff, who also bang the doors, ask if we are OK it feels as if the required answer is ‘yes’.

About mid morning someone was slamming doors and I kept shouting shut up but they kept repeating it.  After one repeat I didn’t shout and they stopped.  It might have been Veronica the cleaner, as she deliberately slams doors and comes on with contemptuous and defiant religious harassment, and also she talks to Zara a lot.  When Zara came back I heard a conversation between them that went something like ‘is she in?’ ‘yes, I can feel her’.  It is punitive and dominating and horrible. Some people would say just laugh.  I feel I am failing not to.  It is very quiet now.  I’m going to get a cup of tea and something to eat.  Maybe I’ll slam a door or two myself.  ‘What’s good for the goose . . .’.  I’m not in the mood though, and I don’t want to open myself to further harassment.  Opening myself doesn’t seem to come into it though.  It is something they have decided to do.  The staff have talked to them and they have got worse, if anything, and obviously contemptuous.   It feels like a hate crime.  But my thoughts and feelings about it might not be right.

A Taste of Freedom

I went to the Pizza Express in King Street today.  I started off with dough balls with Chardonnay, which I didn’t like much at first (the Chardonay) but it grew on me.  I wasn’t going to have anything else but I ended up having a Fiorentina, spinach, cheese, black olives, egg.  Something snapped inside me.  I felt very drunk but I knew it was just a severe emotional problem.  I’m not mentally ill, I just have severe emotional problems.  Apart from anything else I am 14 months homeless now, coming up 15  months.

I feel emotionally wrecked.  I thoroughly enjoyed what I ate.  They say food is an emotional experience and it was for me.  It was great to have egg, and I sat there thinking I could just go vegetarian.

Maybe I have seen too much militant vegan stuff.  Freedom, real freedom, is the freedom not to harm.  I can’t cope anymore.  I have been vegan for over four years now and my experiences in Bulgaria didn’t break me.  Perhaps because I could get some really nice seitan there.  But homelessness in the UK began to break me ages ago with things as small as using the room milk and eating the biscuits in hotel rooms.  Also the tricks and judgmentalism of the vegan providers in the UK.  I feel completely spent.  I’m so tired, and I have to present every day for a drug caled aripiprazole.  I am experiencing tardive dyskenesia, facial muscle twitches.  Your face expresses what is going on in yor mind, and my mind’s normal working is being interfered with by this drug.  I’m in a house now and feeling suppressed and bullied.  I don’t feel as if I am allowed to sing, and they have complained about my music.  I feel as if the bad relationship is my fault.  Music and singing is part of my self-healing.  I feel completely desperate.  I really want to come off my section and off the drugs.  The best thing about this house is that I can cook for  myself.  But I had more freedom to play my music on Redwood 2 than I do here.  I’m writing stuff to Tommy Boyd which I have been taught to believe.  I do believe it.  It doesn’t make things feel better though.  I’m in love with him, or the idea of him, I swear.  The house is part of another in-patient ‘ward’.  I feel I owe him the best I can give him, and to value his best towards me.

Striking Poses

Here’s one: because I am getting on in years I am entitled to some of the luxuries of life, and to establish the lifestyle I have always wanted.

Yesterday coming home – sorry, back to the hospital; I must be getting institutionalised – I thought that was a lie put out by pension and financial investment providers.  We aren’t entitled to anything just because we are getting older and feel we have always been entitled to it.  Not even respect and facilitation of the lifestyle we would choose for ourselves.

Is that true?  Is that really true?  Because at the moment it feels such a desolate thing to say and believe.

To bring it back to my situation, I am being told that they want to transfer me under my present section to shared housing which comes under another hospital.  I have chosen, by default or otherwise, to live on my own. Knowing the kind of harassment I have had towards me in places I have lived, I am afraid of it springing up in my actual living space and turning really nasty, maybe even dangerous.  We, I and my proposed housemates, are not people who could expect to be taken seriously if we said what was happening, because I, at least, am not being taken seriously by the psychiatrist now.  I am getting tired.  I would like some peace and protection and safety on my own terms.

But I’m not entitled to it just because I am aging.  Or am I?  Have older people, like myself (I will be 52 next week) been demeaned a little bit too far?  There we are, I am striking a pose again.  I am tired, I am grief-stricken, I am menopausal.  Is a safe and peaceful living space, and a little respect and self-determination, too much to want and aim for?  What is this third age?  Is it a new age of helplessness?

Redwood 2, Highbury Hospital

I’m putting weight on so Dr Jaffer wants to change my medication.  In the meantime we had hotdogs for tea, or sausage, chips and beans, followed by pudding.

The woman who screams and shouts, reportedly because she is deaf, Chris, a male nurse into religious harassment and mind games, was talking to her at 10.15 onwards near my room, with me feeling as if I was being sprayed with acid.  He was doing it in the open regardless of my feelings or anyone else’s, when he could have left her in peace (and the rest of us), or encouraged her to go to her room with him, since it was obviously causing at least me distress.  She was as sulphuric as the woman who used to live over what was my temporary accommodation, but Dr Jaffer is insistent that it didn’t happen to me there at all, even though here it is all over again on the ward.  I was so upset I was shouting at them to stop, saying things like ‘steal my home then bring me into an environment which is an exact replica’.

I’ve got a manager’s meeting Wednesday 14th November.  I hope they will see their way to being more reasonable by then.  Dr Jaffer has not told me she has changed her mind about nothing really happening.  Chris calls himself a Christian.  He did a quiz which I only became a part of because I happened to see it in passing.  In it he talked about pride, and baby animals, the sphinx.  He said it was compiled by the staff.  I tried a few times recently to say hello to him but he turned away so his gaze was somewhere else, before saying hello.  At the time I thought it was like trying to train a dog.  He calls people in my hearing like ‘yip, yip’, here girl style.

Housing has said that it might be down to the therapeutic decision as to whether or not I can be allocated a home.  There is little, in my opinion, which is therapeutic about this place.  Occupational therapy is supposed to be therapeutic, but I find it controlling and judgmental.  I don’t know what their stance is at the moment but I need it to be something better than keeping me homeless in hospital while I have to keep paying about £160 a month for storage.

Psychological Football

I’m always better when I go out.  Yesterday I didn’t go out because I wanted to save money.  Having just bought a month’s top up for my internet dongle I am down to £5 per day until next Wednesday, when I get my DLA.

Have I mentioned that there is a deaf lady on the ward who screams and shouts at the top of her voice?  I got in in time for dinner so I wouldn’t have to spend money on food and almost as soon as I walked through the door, as I was having a conversation with one of the staff, she suddenly exploded right near me, and I just felt shock waves, as I do every time she does that.  I screamed myself to let the shock out.

Going back to money, it is really hard for me having 5 hours a day off the ward when I have no home to go to.  Everything I want to do is going to cost money, especially if I want to eat.  If I use the free internet facility at places I feel obliged to buy something.  If I was at home it would not cost me nearly so much for a cup of tea/glass of wine and a sandwich.  At the moment both the housing people and the hospital are maintaining that they are waiting on each other before I can be housed.  Tomorrow I have a meeting with my key nurse and the housing advocate.  I hope some progress has been made.

Calling us mentally ill if we don’t believe that about ourselves is a visceral, mind-burning thing.  To then have people making fun of the way you speak, clashing pots and pans at significant intervals, and competing with you for your own breathing and speaking and generally acting like pack animals is more than you should be expected to deal with.  But that was what I had at dinner time.  It is open season for mockery.  Jess was scowling.  I see them hugging and sharing the love with each other as they leave, but some of us don’t even get a real personality to speak to, let alone love.  Today Linda was in the kitchen, and Liz and Luke.  It appears they thought my upset was hilarious, if Luke’s reaction was anything to go by.  It is war, nothing else.  When dealing with people who do not recognise their right to label people that way, mental health staff are engaged in a civil war with captives they hold and torture with drugs and other forms of torment.  I see their anger and sometimes I think I shouldn’t trust them and other times I think I should trust them.  It isn’t going to happen though.  Because I am writing this, and they are reading it.  I am fully convinced, after several instances that were too close to be ‘just coincidence’, that the police are monitoring both my blog and messages I have sent via my phone a couple of times.

As I came off the ward I spoke to someone on the building staff and it was obvious from his response to me that he had no time for anything I had to say.  I had thought he was a decent person, but his voice was full of derision when I spoke to him today.

There is a nurse called Vymla who has a couple of times burst out with ‘hi honey’ either to me or ‘on the telephone’ when I have been around.  Something in the tone of voice made me feel it was deliberate.  On the day that I was first due to be assessed for a section 3, having just a few days before discovered that I had been in hospital for nearly a month and none of my relatives knew, because although one had been nominated as closest relative, it came back in the paperwork that no one had been nominated, I was really upset because I was being given only 3 or 4 hours notice with no one knowing I was even there.  Vymla opened the office door and said she was sorry she had to open the door, but I wasn’t shouting loud enough.  I told her to stop being sarcastic and she said she was never sarcastic.  Am I supposed to laugh at this later when things have calmed down and take it all with a pinch of salt?

I don’t think I’ve mentioned Vymla before.  There is another one called Annie who comes at me with faces, it is really grotesque.  One day just as I got back, when the olympics were on, she got me in a long conversation and followed every change in expression in my voice.  I started doing the raise at the end of my sentences, like we have learned from Australia, and she matched me move for move.

I managed to get the first assessment for a section 3 moved to a few days after, maybe Monday where it had been Friday.  They weren’t willing to give way at all until I brought out a pen and paper, then suddenly it all changed.

My last section before this one, a section 5(2) involved a Dr Singh who acted as if he was giving me the third degree.  I hadn’t met him before.  He said, and Liz backed him up, that I had said something I hadn’t.  At that point I wished that I had legal representation and witnesses, but apparently you can’t get them for an assessment.  I forgot his name part way through and asked him to remind me and he was very aggressive, demanding of me why I had forgotten his name, I shouldn’t have forgotten, I had forgotten other things as well.  But I answered all of his questions correctly about the day, date, time, who is the prime minister (though I had to think about that one, I had Margaret Thatcher in my mind).  What I am saying is that the assessments can be, and in my experience have been, a free space for bullying and belittling the patient when neither advocate nor solicitor is there to see.  I think I should have been entitled to an advocate and I can’t remember why I didn’t have one, but as the law stands at the moment I am only entitled to a solicitor after the decision has been made to put me on a section.

Then they act as if what they have done is a perfectly normal way to behave in any relationship.

Someone recently said you don’t get any peace until they have you on drugs.  It seems to me that fits my experience, that they want you on drugs, possibly it makes them feel better.  I asked at one point if I could have the section 3 without the drugs, if they were worried about me leaving hospital with nowhere to go.  When they get you on drugs it seems like ‘fight over’ in many ways, for them.

Tattle-Tale Post Review

Saw Dr Jaffur and Dr Fahy today with Alison Harrison, the ward manager.  Dr Jaffur was the only one of the three who spoke.

Dr Jaffur asked me a few questions about how I was feeling.  She asked about medication.  She asked about the ‘feelings’ I was having. of being harassed, etc.  I asked her to tell me if she was acknowledging that it was not all just in my mind and she said she was not acknowledging that, she thought they were just feelings, after I had told her about the times men have drawn level with me and cleared their throats straight into my ear as they pass.  Like the people in London who used to draw level and scream in my ear as they passed.  I heard someone talking about it on the radio, acknowledging it as a phenomenon, however much it is magnified or not magnified by my sensitivity and upset about it.

I got up, refusing to continue the review.  I held my finger up and said she had a vested interest in the situation and in not acknowledging the outer reality of what I was saying.

I came out really upset and angry.  I was saying that she was stupid or dishonest, that she was insisting that my whole life experience as I recount it is just feelings born of my mind.  I was saying she had no right to say that, just because in her judgment I am mentally ill, real things like harassment don’t happen to me.  I was saying I understood my life better than she did because I had a background in real therapy.  I said ‘oh, she must have a gift in clairvoyance, then, which is more than I have’.  I meant distance viewing but couldn’t remember the term.  I don’t have any of those gifts.

Tommy Boyd once said that his dog once ate his shit.  I thought he was talking about me swallowing an act. Whether he was or not, I have swallowed this, whether he meant it or not: he said something about God and not believing in Him, but rather being alone and acting and deciding alone.  This is something I have come to value, even though I believe in God.  It is, of course, the existentialist position.  Certainly you can’t go to the Bible and apply it to your situation when it involves people in power who do not share your position.  Christians differ with Christians.  You have to think with the material and spoken facts and limit yourself to those, in some situations.  I love Tommy Boyd.  I don’t know if he could love me.

I felt, rather, looking back, that it was Dr Jaffur who was putting herself in a position of deep denial, medical book guided fantasy, spinning something from her training which is not true of my life and has no connection with it of my choosing.

We all know about hate crime, including hate crimes against disabled people.  In our dining room we even have literature on the wall which says that this trust doews not tolerate disablism.  I think that is what the doctors and nurses here are engaging in every time they relate a concern you express back to mental illness.  They don’t want to know about reality.  Especially when they themselves abuse their positions and don’t recognise proper boundaries.  They seem to reason that we are ill therefore they can be lazy, or act as if they are in a disfunctional intimate relationship as the abusive, ridiculing, begrudging, demanding and superior partner.

Linda the nurse came in and told me to calm down as there were ladies who wanted to get their lunch.  I said i wasn’t saying anything they wouldn’t say themselves and that they were on my side.  I asked another patient what she thought and she said she didn’t know what to say.  Linda told me it wasn’t fair to involve the other patients, even though she was the one who had first invoked them on her side.  I think Errol, who was serving lunch,was coming in every time I stopped speaking.  Maybe that was why I didn’t feel able to stop.  I asked the person serving with him for a plastic white spoon to take out with me, and his body language seemed to me to indicate that he was unhappy with my use of the word ‘white’, though for me it was natural and just a description of the spoon, to create a focus on what I was asking for.  He has involved me in accusations of racism in the past, and has taken his own actions towards me and made out that it is me harassing him rather than the other way round.

Linda left as I was still speaking and I mentioned the night before the 40th anniversary of my father’s death and how she had not defended me against a patient who had hatefully and angrily said that everyone had problems and she didn’t want to know mine.  I said Linda had no rights towards me at all.

We all know about hate crime.  Dr Jaffur is not willing to acknowledge any possibility that I may be subject to it in any circumstances.  I wonder what she thinks of the very publicised case a few years ago where a mother in Leicester took her own and her disabled daughter’s lives after years of harassment they had not received adequate help and attention for from the police, who I think publicly apologised for this and said they would try harder in the future.  Short of corruption and self-protection, why is it not possible, in her mind, and the minds of other staff, that I am actually experiencing the harassment I say I am?  I don’t have bruises to show for most of it, and they made a mental health assessment justification out of the bruises they did see when I was advised to go to Queen’s Medical Centre and have it looked at.

Are they so scared of the consequences of this kind of abuse towards me that, for some reason, even though it has been recognised for others, they are unwilling to recognise for me that I am in a situation of ongoing harassment and intimidation unless it gets stopped?  That is the only reason that makes any sense for this willful presentation of themselves as blind to the possibility that I am paranoid because I am being harassed.

Hillsborough Report

On Wednesday it was reported on Radio 4 that around 100 police statements were altered following the Hillsborough disaster and the situation was made to look like the fault of the public rather than the police.  Someone speaking on Radio 4 said that they did not normally believe conspiracy theories but that this time it was evident.

But that fact has taken all these years to be established and be reported.

To me it seems reasonable to believe that there are many other conspiracy theories which are equally true, including the conspiracy of the mental health system and its brutal approach to helping people to deal with their mental health problems, relationship problems, emotional problems.

I say therapy which is therapy is consenting, and nothing involuntary can fit that description or be ultimately therapeutic (unless it is shock therapy or reality therapy, but then is it really therapy, or just more repression/suppression and ‘learning your lesson’?).

Twenty-three years after Hillsborough this has come out, though the event is over and done with.  For people enmeshed in the mental health system it is ongoing and some do not survive.  People have been killed by inappropriate restraint methods and application, as well as by death at their own hands for others, preferring, I suppose, to die at their own hands rather than to keep going through the seemingly endless cycle of crisis and hospital admissions where the facts they know of their lives, better than the mental health service staff do, are often invalidated and contradicted by the insistence on a mental health diagnosis. 

I have recently felt hopeless and helpless and that, if I were a different person, I might kill myself rather than continue to go through this cycle.  I did deliberately overdose once, in 2003.  I took almost 100 paracetamol and lay down to sleep, not caring whether I woke or not.  I woke and stumbled into the kitchen and vomited.  The church I was going to at the time didn’t know this, but it was just before I was confirmed.  I ended up in hospital on a drip.

I have heard since Wednesday another programme on Radio 4 talking about the IPCC (Independent Police Complaints Commission) and the experience of some that it has failed to deliver for them.  I have only approached them about one thing and I didn’t follow it through to the end.  I tried, but the police service was not very co-operative and I ended up leaving it because of other more immediate pressures.

I spoke to one of the nurses recently and told her that the support I needed was legal support in the community when situations arose which I had not contributed to in the locality and which were a disturbance to me.  I mentioned that the police are supposed to do something after the third report from one individual, and she said that what they did would not necessarily be what the individual wanted and that they would not necessarily interpret the situation as the individual did.  She also said that the police are a law to themselves, a statement which could be interpreted her evasion of the issue, among other possibilities.

So Anyway, last Wednesday . . .

My advocate and I went into the review meeting with Dr Jaffur and Alison, the ward manager.  When we came out we both agreed that the two staff had not been open to changing their intentions with regard to forced medication.  My advocate suggested that I could be moved to another ward and Alison said she I didn’t have a good relationship with any of the staff and that she thought I would always feel harassed.  I suppose the facts and what I think about that don’t matter.  Their position as stated was that they just wanted me better, and that if the medication was not taken orally they would inject.  When I asked when the medication was going to start, after the review meeting, Alison said in a really confrontational way ‘it starts right now’.  I found it so confrontational that I asked her if she was trying to get me into a state where several people could hold me down and inject me.

So I have capitulated and am taking the medication orally, in spite of the fact that my previous reasons for not wanting to take it remain.  Being forced to take medication against your wishes is bullying, which the trust says it does not tolerate.

Last week the possibility of forced injection was being held over me as a threat (threat is the right word).  I asked the nurse last night what would happen if I were to refuse medication now, if I would be injected, and he said no, an injection was no longer there as an option.  But if I refuse again now I am afraid (fear is something else the trust literature says the trust does not tolerate) that they would go straight to injection and keep it that way, and withdraw the oral option.

In the meantime, I am exhausted, worrying about relationships on the ward, as if they are the most important thing in my life; worrying about my financial situation, especially with regard to my belongings in storage and the fact that my benefits are due to go down now I have been so long in hospital.  Occasionally I recall that what I reported around my home has not yet received any signs of being taken seriously and would therefore be likely to recur in any future tenancies.

Alison says she sees no sign of any harassment.  Maybe that is because she isn’t out of her office and among us when that is happening.  Or maybe it is deliberate blind eyes and deaf ears.  I have told them everything and there is nothing else to tell.  If anyone is being disingenuous in this, it is not me.  I have noticed that several of the staff use false personalities.  Knowing that makes me not even want to try to relate to them.  Also, if it is true that I don’t have a good relationship with any of the staff, as Alison said, it might be possible that that is because I see them as upholding and enabling a totalitarian and abusive mental health system.  They know my beliefs about this, so it shouldn’t be put down to a failing in methat I don’t have a good relationship with any of the staff, if that is true.  Also, some of them are there just for the money and don’t want to work.  They are happy if we are not visible because we feel so threatened and disrespected by them.  They just mess around until it is time for them to go home.

I’ve just finished the 1st chapter of ‘The Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner.  In places I have found it hilarious and I anticipate a good read.  The protagonist is from Nottingham, in a Borstal, at this point.  I don’t know anything about the book or where he ends up in his thinking.  He talked (he is the narrative voice) about having seen the knife held by those in authority over him when they put him in a Borstal.  Being of a basically law-abiding temperament I want him to have changed his thinking and position about a lot of things he is sure about, including his belief that the authorities are his enemies and always will be, by the end of the book.  In the meantime, I am loving it.

My laptop needs mending.  Hard drive disk inaccessible.  Have just submitted a form.  I’m typing in the library.

I??? Think???

Ever tried to write without any kind of privacy in a world where everyone always seems to react to you?

I’m back in hospital in Nottingham.  Section 2.  I’ve been thinking it is more like a boot camp than a place where people can heal, and people are the best managers of their own healing, I think.

Not much time.  I get 2 hours out twice a day.  Having tried to work my way through the anger of impatient and clever-clogs librarians and twitterers, I have 13 minutes left of my original 30.

People want me to come into line, but if I come into line with what I have, they would reject me, orsomething which to me would be meaningless.  So why can’t people just respect my privacy and my right to be who I am in the first place without using their job to do whatever it is they are trying to do which is, in my opinion, in breach of that?

What else was I going to say?  I started off with so much rthat shoulod have filled so much time, now I can’t think how to fill the time I have left.

I was on the bus just now.  Saw a man who looked like Gordon Ramsey.  I wondered if he knew or had been told or if that was what he was trying for.  Then I had a thought I might have had before.  If someone is trying to look like someone else, they might not be happy with who they are.  So saying to someone ‘do you kinow you look like . . . ?’ is not a very helpful thing, even and especially if that is what they are trying to do.  I decided I would not say to people again, with a pleasurable smile on my face ‘you look like . . .’, because even if that gave them satisfaction, it would be satisfaction in the wrong thing, and it wouldn’t last long, because they are not that person.

I decided any pleasurable comment about a person should be about who they are, not who they remind you of.  Also they might be sick of being told they look like someone else and feel about this the same way that I am writing now.  That they want to be a pleasure, or affirmed, for who they are, and not who they remind you of.  At root that is what everyone wants, whether they know it or not.

4 minutes left.  Time to tag and run.

Excuse Me, Can We Talk?

When I was young, this is how I understood you approached a person for a relationship or conversation.

The current trend, which everyone seems to do to me all the time, is to grab your ear without engaging you in conversation, then fire little bits and snippets to try and ascertain if ‘you are the one’.

This is not a form of conversation starting and finding out I am open to, and when it happens I feel stunned and detained for another person’s purpose against my will and I feel powerless and abused, because all they want is to satisfy themselves that I am the one they have heard about.

Yet, someone is ill or injured on the street and people walk by.

Recently, appropriately or not, I want to collapse, just give up, let my legs stop   holding me up and fall to the ground.  Just stop trying, not even necessarily lose consciousness and that is what I anticipate might be the problem, because if I am not supported in that moment and if people leave me I might end up in the hands of the mental health services as has happened before, unless there is someone who will stay with me and insist that doesn’t happen.

So I can’t stop, I daren’t and everyone wants to use probes to find out if I am who they think I am and what they have heard is true, but they don’t care about me as a person and coming up to me and saying,’are you all right, can we talk?’

No one knows or cares, unless I say so, that I am in a violent situation and my stomach hurts and I feel sick and as if I have to deal with the situation myself because when I ask for help nothing is actually done to change the situation.  Therefore I feel as if I need to buy a cheap dinner service and ask the violent and harassing ones round for a meal, while I am actually living in fear day and night, then when I get away from the flat feeling embarrassed because I think I am being immature and over-reacting and it is all my fault and who do I think I am and I should know better.

And I write far more than I want to on posts like this because people keep grabbing my ears and life in that way and I get so angry I lose control of where I am going.  I’m a paying customer and it feels like harassment and extortion, not to mention personally invasive and disrespectful.  It makes me feel trapped by their assumptions, unable to back out of things then accepting responsibility for a choice which was eventually not made completely happily, and I feel, right now, as if I am under exam conditions, using an internet cafe, and panicking because I feel as if I am being expected to stop writing this and talk to the proprietor at his insistence and expectation.

I have no boundaries of protection that are respected.

This has been how it is for years, and I feel sick.

More slamming doors, incorporating my speech pattern into his speech, clearing his throat and employing a tone towards me as soon as I walk in.  I do not have my own voice.  These people are deliberately stealing and demanding my right to myself and what is mine to give, and I suppose I have to pay for having used the service as well.

He is angry, among other things, but he will never say so.

This is the only internet cafe I know in Nottingham.  But I feel hurt and everything.

Memo to self

To achieve anything of importance you need your own private space.

With what is happening around me when I try to use a computer in a public space, or even stand and look out at the fountain I walked beside after my degree ceremony and reconstruct memories and remember who was with me, I can’t even remember what it was I considered so urgent that I needed an extra hour on the internet before I did anything else.

Officials have been so unethical and unprofessional in their handling of my situation and the way they try to access it that they have left me vulnerable in every way.

I’m going to get a tee shirt made up saying ‘Am I the only person who is not allowed to cry and scream in anguish without being arrested or put in a mental hospital?’

If anyone else wants to use it, feel free.  Your design will be unique to yourself (or your company, if you will go that low).  If anyone wants it for company purposes I might hope that they would approach me so I can share their profits.

Basically the police seem to be standing back and letting things get out of hand until I crack and start giving it back to my aggressors, at which point the police move in to take advantage of the situation to establish a contact with me which, because I do not accept where they want to go or yield, ends up in me being arrested.  They stand back while trouble develops then take advantage, rather than making an honest approach to what they want from, for or with me.  I still have bruises on my wrist from Monday night before the clearing of St Paul’s, which is 9 days ago, and no handcuffs were used.  There was no need for force, apart from making my opinion of what they were doing to me known verbally, I offered no physical resistance.  They acted in anger and malice.  Also dishonesty, I think.  They told me not to go back to my tent, supposedly by that time knowing that clearance was scheduled, so even if I hadn’t been arrested I would have been in breach of their instructions if I had gone back to my tent for any reason, even though it was the only place I had to sleep and had no money for anywhere else and they probably knew I would need to get my things.  As it is I seem to have lost everything I had in there.  The City of London police told me anything unclaimed had been taken to Heathrow and I should contact the Metropolitan Police about how to get it, but a CAB staff member phoned them for me yesterday and they say they know nothing.

I Know the BBC . . .

I wanted to record yesterday’s Newsround today, and it keeps coming back ‘content doesn’t seem to be working, try again later’.

Back in the UK now.  At Charing Cross last night there was rail staff and police staring at me, but making no approach.  Lots of people looked at me with disgust.  Inc staff on 2nd plane home.  Threw up after 4 or 5 mouthfuls of a vegetable biryani.  Had forgotten how HOT UK curries are.  All hot and not much else.  Threw up.  Gave what was left to a beggar on the street.  Plenty of people in UK like that kind of thing.

Sat with a(nother) homeless person on my way to Victoria.  Shared my food with him.  Rode a nightbus at his suggestion, thought it would be cheaper than getting a hotel room in London (4 times more expensive than Bulgaria), but by the end and the looks of disgust I was getting from dark, sophisticated painted girls I was wrecked.  I got off the buss at the end with a long haried man dressed very dramatically wearing an upside down cross on his belly, a blonde girl who was dressed to fit and was with him, who didn’t say much and seemed to be drunk, another young guy, not so dramatic, who seemed to be with them, a city cype blonde girl, and an absolute lookalike of Bruce Atkinson, who said – well, it doesn’t matter.  Afterwards I thought he might have been the same man who presented himself at the front during an appeal at KT and threw people into disarray.

Sport – she just said, ‘oh, it’s incredibly tight . . .’  aggressively contemptuous and mocking.  They are the hit and run of my tag.  They mark their pitch with verbal hits, and then run while I am still reeling.  But Many programmes do the same thing.  This lady is Gabby something.

I Don’t Have To

I don’t have to do everything I feel like doing.  I don’t have to scream if I want to.  If I don’t scream my world won’t end, no one will suffer, in fact, I might be stronger and things might be better if I don’t scream.  I don’t have to let people know they are making me feel like that, then I can get on with and be open to people who DON’T make me feel like that.

It isn’t dishonest, it is a choice, like any other.

If I feel violent, for whatever reason, although it is a strong feeling, I don’t have to express it.  If I recognise that and don’t think it has to rule or can destroy me, or that angry, violent, controlling, demanding people can, if it remains unexpressed, it goes, and it was never mine in the first place.  It was a feeling that I felt, for some reason.  It isn’t me.  Anyone can be driven to feeling violent, but it doesn’t have to be expressed.  If I stop it, the feeling is gone within two or three seconds and I know it was nothing to do with me in the first place.

There are other things I can do with my day that are nicer for everyone.  And the harassers and those who feel entitled and who treat me violently can do as they like.

Edit note:  10 minutes later.  Men started shouting downstairs, it was OK, I didn’t feel threatened, and they didn’t sound threatening.  They were part of the background noise, and I became unaware.  As so often happens in this situation, the people above me banged in a way which felt targeted and violent and abusive.  They have just banged again now.  I could be just me misinterpreting it.  But yesterday they were banging and calling into my media and every pause in the radio recording, so I feel I have to listen with my headphones on now to maintain some sort of self-control when it happens.  Also they were turning heavy power tools on me, as they used to in my apartment in Plovdiv.  After reacting hysterically I told the hotel staff and asked them if they had any workmen and they said they didn’t.  But they also haven’t made any move to stop it after saying they would.  Last night they said they would deal with it ‘tomorrow’, and I insisted on the phone (they phoned me) that they deal with it then, and they said they would, but didn’t.  When I saw the same person later in the evening, about 10.30pm he said he had listened but hadn’t heard anything, and that there was no one there, and he put on a hard expression.  He has said that before and I know it isn’t true.  They make themselves sound, vocally, mot of the time, like nice and lovely people, above me.

I am in the Ricas Hotel in Sliven.  I’m on the 5th floor.  The people doing this, which is exactly like Plovdiv was, are directly above me on the 6th.  Putting this on my blog is easier for me, in every way, than trying to deal with the hotel staff and the authorities, and hopefully might be more effective.  I’m afraid to move.  It has me in such a state that if I try and go somewhere else presenting like this it will just create something bad there as well.  I hope someone will read this and help me.

King David – Camera Snap From a War Zone

David said, ‘Let a righteous man strike me, it is a kindness’.  Is this the truth, or is it, like his affair with Bathsheba and ordering her husband to be killed in battle, a sign of emotional sickness?

Poor little guy, one of many sons, the youngest and despised, sent out every day to look after the sheep on his own.  With nothing but his target skills and his harp and singing and his idealised idea, in his loneliness, of his relationship with God, to keep him going.

When his father Jesse was asked by Samuel to get all of his sons together because he wanted to anoint one of them to be king after Saul, neither Jesse nor the rest of his sons gave David a thought.  He was out there with the sheep.  Samuel got to the end of everyone who was in front of him, the story says, and God said ‘no’ to all of them, and he had to ask if there was another son.  When Jesse said yes, he said yes but, not oh yes of course.  Samuel had to insist on him being brought in.

Later Saul kept trying to kill him, and he and Jonathan agreed a code that Jonathan would use to tell David that he needed to flee, if he thought so.  And David fled.  He got to a city and pretended madness, he lied to cover his tracks and people were killed in the wake of that.  Yet he said he would not fear.  He was very afraid and in denial, whatever his affirmations and confessions.  He said he was convinced of his own righteousness and that God was with him and knew him in his righteousness.  It seems to me his suffering and isolation had pushed him over the edge.  He felt he had to be perfect or something to be loved and approved of, and so he asserted that he was, exulted in it, and told God he was a perfect and righteous man.

And my teachers have believed his reported self-assessment.

It seems to me this is faulty interpretation and exegesis and shows no understanding of human psychology.

They are as much in denial about him as he was about himself, and as the prophet might have been who said God had said David was a man after God’s own heart, who would fulfil all of God’s desires.  And yet God had to tell David, when he wanted to build him a temple, that he was not the man to do it, because he was a man of blood.  He went around killing people and cutting off foreskins for trophies.

The Bible, reportedly, shows people as they were.  It doesn’t say that everything that came from his life and pen and lips were God’s truth.  The Bible, if it is true, is the truth about the people in it, and what they say is from God is not necessarily from God at all, and it is undiscerning and maybe a bit afraid to look at every word the people who are called God’s servants say and think they are all right and perfect and can all be synthesised into being truth in themselves, just because they are in the Bible and came from people who have been made, historically and by the will and judgment of men, both at the time and since then, into heroes.

When the Bible says God was with him, does it just mean that people loved and protected him?  The Bible was written by men, and men said that God was with him – because they had a warrior mentality?

David said I am for peace but they are for war.  So why did God say he couldn’t build his temple because he was a man of blood?  He was holding David responsible.  Or Nathan’s prophetic spirit and internal workings were.  Later David prayed ‘deliver me from blood guiltiness, Oh my God’.  So what was Nathan’s bag?  He put a real heavy on him, and made him live without formal punishment, which was obviously a psychological need and would have been appropriate.  (thought: unless man of blood is just referring to the thing with Uriah, then of course I am just being arrogant and proud again deciding it was about his killing sprees, which in the eyes of Israel were worth eulogising – Saul has killed his thousands and David his tens of thousands.  That was why Saul wanted to kill him – he was jealous.  It says the hand of God was with David because he was killing so many people.  Whose judgment was that?  Was it REALLY God’s?)

When it says the glory of the Lord filled the place and the priest’s could not go about their work, does it mean there was a sudden emotional and psychological crisis felt by all that no one knew how to handle? So they fell on their faces and worshipped until – what – released them?

I’m sure this could be taken much further.  I love the fact that it can.  But then who is God?  Who are you?  Who am I?  And what is good?  And how can we free ourselves of this evil and hero protecting mentality to pursue what is right and good, and not what is safe and cosy and cronyistic and cliquey and maudlin?

 

Link here.  Why is this not showing, WordPress?  Censorship, harassment, terribly cynical of someone, inhumanly so.  Frightening.  What is the agenda here?

Edit note:  It’s been taken off the Christianity page as well, and it was definitely relevant.

Look, this is embarrassing for me and it should also be embarrassing for you.

It should be embarrassing for you because you say you stand for free speech, freedom, openness and open society – don’t you?  Those of us who are regularly censored know that is not the whole truth, if the truth at all.

It is embarrassing for me because I believe in open authority and politics.  Anything less says the populace is somehow inferior or not well enough informed and doesn’t have the same right to information.  It casts secrecy over things which should not be secret.  The ‘wrongdoer’ sometimes doesn’t know that is what they have been identified as, rightly or wrongly.  It allows one group to identify itself as right against another they identify as wrong, including in international politics.

It says that the person or people the various authorities identify as wrong are the whole cause of the problem and the authorities, and those who establish, employ and use them, are good and right-minded people, and also pure in word and action, or at least justifiable and ‘not guilty’.  People are criminalised just by the approach of the authorities to them, whether they know it or not, and whether or not they are actually criminal.

I believe in openness.  We are all as good and all as bad, we are all to blame and we all have the same rights and responsibilities.  Mistreated people are angry, and some angry people do harmful things.  Unequal relationships are a form of mistreatment.  Unequal vulnerability, unequal disclosure, people in authority or positions of influence who see themselves as being authority rather than serving in administration of what is appropriate to their job.

This is all old hat and I believe all right-minded people agree with me.  With me.  (I said it twice because I couldn’t decide which would communicate most effectively, bold or not bold).  Every day WordPress and other media still use language and material packaged together in a way that is relevant to me in constantly updated ways.  This creates a feeling of obligation and relationship which, I believe, is inappropriate to my actual situation, especially where nothing explicit, by way of committed communication, is ever entered into.  My neighbours know this too.  Hence the violence and harassment, even if it is inexcusable.  To have this kind of fluffy, feel-good, earnest or even comedic communication in the middle of a violent and undefined reality is not appropriate and not helpful.  It makes the problem worse.  Sometimes it isn’t comedic, sometimes I believe I know it is downright sinister.

So you are playing with my mind and reality.  Me, one individual who writes my blog.  The problem is, you do this in domestic and international politics as well, and your designated baddies know that, some of them are vulnerable and some of them are not, some of them have power and in their rage or confusion with this kind of communication can do catastrophic things.  I’ve written about Gadaffi before.  He is in the news at the moment.  I watched a film recommended by a friend, called Zeitgeist, which talked about the language used by the media and politicians around 9/11, and watching the news I’ve been observing the same thing here, at least with CNN, the channel I can get on my TV here.  It is an agreed, asserted view for presentation which is short of whole and little short of legitimised playground bullying and retaliation.  A club for fighting cats and dogs and gossip circles and sending to Coventry.  Ooh, nasty.  I have news broadcasts in mind.  We are all influenced against the love that we are by watching and listening to this.  Some of us are targeted to be influenced, as individuals and groups, and not just what we believe.

People say he is detached from reality.  I felt sorry for him, he looked confused.  Is he detached from reality?  He’s been made the baddy for years and years, and the media says he is detached from reality when he says all his people love him.  But I don’t believe that.  I believe all his people do love him, even if many of them oppose him.  I believe that love is the basis of all emotion and behaviour in every human being.  Most of us don’t understand that, we are not taught to.  The Bible says God is love and that we are made in His image.  Therefore love is also the foundation of our personalities, if not the whole of who we are (as it is for God, in whose image we are made), whether we realise it or not.  When that knowledge is undermined, not recognised about each other, or otherwise becomes emotionally and behaviourally perverted, that is the problem.  Yes, Gadaffi’s people all loved him.  Yes, they fought him (it is a psychological truism to say if you fight with someone you love them.  They have power with you somehow.  Somehow they matter to you.  All emotion, at root, is a manifestation of love, even if it manifests as guilty political manoeuvring and fear of loss of power and position or anything else, or of exposure.  Even if it manifests as anger or hatred or violence.  It is all a sign of our basic feeling and knowledge of connection).

I cried, a little, at what I saw on the television about Gadaffi last week.  I think presenting the news in that way, without the human angle and understanding and acknowledgment on the part of the controllers of communication of their own contribution to the awfulness, is in itself dangerous to society and inhuman.  It helps to make the poor despots what they are.  They are not playing for sympathy. They truly are worthy of our sympathy (they feel like we do, feelings which should not be put down as being out of touch with reality, and wrestle with issues as we do), and our own acknowledgment of how we have contributed to who they are, rather than helping them, through identification with them rather than setting ourselves apart or thinking ourselves better or wiser, to become something different.  Politics should be personal, right to the top and across nations and ideologies.  We need to be able to understand each other’s ideologies and converse and debate and argue with knowledge and respect.  We have to understand each other’s versions of reality so we don’t say someone has lost touch with reality when they don’t conform to our own idea of what reality is or should be.  The view that someone of a different culture and religion or ideology has lost touch with reality should never be put out through a news agency, even if only said in frustration.  It is my belief that this is often, if not always, just a manifestation of ignorance, of not knowing and not understanding, and not knowing how to set about finding out.  Or not caring, which, moralising as I sound here, must be worse.

Christian Life College, where I used to go, talked about two different sonship states.  One, we are sons of God by creation, and for some, we are sons of God by being born again.  That is how it was presented.

I would say that even if we believe in heaven and hell and that Christians go to heaven after death, we are all the children of God by creation at least, if that is what we believe, and if we believe that, we have to know that, on earth, we all have the same rights, whether we have the same religion or not, and an obligation to respect other people and make sure we recognise those rights in all our dealings with them. Including the right to intimacy and vulnerability, and openness and full disclosure, to expect it and to give it, both ways, in every relationship which involves power and authority.

The New Testament letters of the Bible, written to Christians, says honour all men (includes women and children), and that if you do not love your brother who you have seen, how can you love God who you have not seen?  We all share the creation sense of brotherhood.

So we need to be more open, when it comes to power and authority.  You choose your friends, but in your established authority and power relationships you have no choice, either party, unless the person in authority is able to lose and give up their authority and power and everything that goes with it.

That is far more than I wanted to say, but it is now said.  And that is why I for one don’t like my mind and conscience and emotions being played with by the removal of potentially sensitive posts, whether ostensibly for my protection, better criminal-catching, or any other reason, especially when the only direct communication I get from the same authorities is that which takes away from me.

Their behaviour is making me really anxious.  I think they are hacking my computer.

Apart from anything else, the violence, the show of being nice and good and saying dobre and hallelujah all the time, day and night, and violence worse than my last neighbours, if possible, I keep hearing a man up there nervously clearing his throat, and every time I do something a bit different – like today I did a search on how to grow citrus fruit, they react vocally, and this search got quite a delighted reaction.

As I said, I think they are hacking my computer.  So they will know the properties I have looked at and where.  I only thought, about 30 minutes ago, that it might not be just a bit of distressing stupidity, but they might be hacking (he just said dobre as if answering that and they began to react as soon as I started writing this.  Door slamming now) for someone, or even just for themselves, to establish and stalk and harass my future movements and relationships.  Now I think I have cause for concern.

I’ve told my landlord several times and he said he would talk to them and that they said they would try not to disturb me (it’s like having a stormtrooper as a carer, or a wild animal as my keeper), but yesterday I Skyped him and told him again what they were doing, the violence and everything, and didn’t ask, but demanded that I should be protected, in the property I was paying him for, from the people directly above it, who come with the property and over whom I have no choice.  That was yesterday morning.  Last night I had still not heard anything, and I don’t expect to, the way they have handled things so far.  He might even be in on it himself.

I’m looking at properties I really like.  I’ve even won 2 on ebay.  But if stalkers and computer hackers (he cleared his throat.  Most of the time now I try not to lose it completely because they start being violent and placing quite expert psychological attacks on my voice) and mafia, are going to attack and sabotage me everywhere, especially as I’m thinking of dealing commercially in food, that would put everyone at risk, I’m not sure if I can go ahead.  But I want to and insist on my right to do so without fear.

Mockery, cruelty, deception, violence, authorities who stand back and let them, possible savage attacks on future land and property.  I’ve just had some aural interjections which felt so evil I can’t complete this, it has confused my mind.

Edit note: They parrot and ghost my own voice right into my mind.  Normally if I try to retrieve emotional and psychological control of my own voice they ignore me or get violent, but I just reversed the sound being used and a man upstairs yelled as if offended or affected, as it affects me from them. What I hear in their voices I’ve started ending up with severe pains in my chest almost every day, my fear and outrage is so great.  They threatened to come on again just now.  I said in Bulgarian ‘your violence back on yourself, all of you’, and the pain started to dissolve and left, then I heard a woman’s sharp heals stamping on the stairs and they started to come back.  I don’t know how much of this stuff actually belongs together to affect me as it does.  They bang every time I go to the toilet or shower so I’ve noticed I’ve started going all day without a visit, and I’m too scared to move or open my mouth.

They seem to be reacting to something they feel spiritually when I am silent, all the time, when I relax.  I took 2 paracetamol and lay on my bed yesterday afternoon, sweating and immobile from the pain, and as soon as it seemed it was going completely, they banged on my ceiling.  I am sure the fact that they have to put a noise onto every one of mine, even my coughing and speech, has something to do with it.  I read a few months ago that Stalin was a satanist.  People talk about these things but say (legally and with authority to put you in a mental hospital) that you are crazy if you talk and act and reason as if they are true.

O . . .

(Public Health Warning: more mangled blood and guts, but also an attempt to address the issue of goading and chain-yanking, failed, unfortunately, on the whole, and I’m not the sort to incubate a post and try again.  I talk about the guy who got water thrown in his face by Spurgeon, I think, when he told Spurgeon he was perfect, and he got angry, which I think might have been the perfect reaction to Spurgeon’s mischief and therefore did not disprove his statement).

That is my open mouth, made silent with hysterical fear.

I’m living in Sofia now.  The woman above me screams hallelujah in the most hateful voice every time I feel I have a good communication and I can communicate it.

I want to scream for help and I can’t, it is that psychologically, emotionally and spiritually abusive.  I can’t express anything without feeling dishonest or that I am going to disintegrate or, if I am angry, be attacked, even physically.  She makes me feel she is my friend and I should ask her to forgive me and help me, whatever I feel she voices differently.  I said that because . . . well, if you read this blog, you know.  There is a man from whom the only vocalisation I hear is an angry or frightened throat-clearing.  That feels to me like part of the illusion, if it is an illusion, of their goodness.  If he spoke it might not persist.  But his vocal silence is also part of the oppression.

She is attacking my soul and spirit with razors and bludgeoning me with hatred which feels like a physical mallet to the head.

Combined with the banging . . .

So is this orchestrated, because it is happening everywhere I go.  Who is behind it?

The most torturous thing about this for me is the church’s dishonesty and use of these things.  Someone on Premier was talking about chain yanking this morning, and that is what she is doing and that is what Premier and the church have been doing for years – the way they have kept saying ‘crazy’, for instance, and pushing psychiatry.  This man said so this morning, he pointed it out himself.  What they have been doing is sadistic, cruel and abusive.  That must always have been obvious to them, surely, and if it hasn’t been . . . either way they are not fit to  hold ministerial duties of any description.

I don’t know if I’m imagining that when my recording was interrupted near the end this morning, John Pantry became annoyed because his attempt to build a bridge had been interrupted.  How would he have known, without illegal access to my computer?

Sometimes it feels like protection and I feel unworthy and shameful calling it criminal.  But it isn’t really.  It isn’t really protective.  They are keeping me imprisoned by their evasion of responsibility, procrastination, holding on to power, refusal to apologise officially, if not openly.

I don’t want a bridge back to the world where leaders are not first prepared to own their wrongdoing before I cross that bridge.  Own it where everyone can see, in a committed way. . .

One of the ministers involved, I think it was R T Kendall, but I’m not sure, told this story of someone who said to Spurgeon, I think, that he, the person speaking to Spurgeon, was perfect.  That he believed he was perfect.  Spurgeon (if it was him) said ‘oh, really?’ and threw a glass of water at him, and the man became angry, and everyone laughed at him.

The same chain-yanking.  That is hardly perfect, is it?

Now, was the man expressing imperfection to express anger in that situation?  Is anger a sign of imperfection?  But the Bible says Jesus was angry.  Our teachers have had it for ages that Jesus’ anger was different, that it was perfect and righteous anger.

It doesn’t say, though, that He ever pulled anything like this self-righteous, judgmental, proud, debasing, mischievous and malicious chain-yanking.  At least, not on true seekers and people who expressed something they thought they had grasped as a truth.

An exception comes to mind, possibly, in Mark 7.

Jesus Honors a Syrophoenician Woman’s Faith

24 Jesus left that place and went to the vicinity of Tyre.  He entered a house and did not want anyone to know it; yet he could not keep his presence secret. 25 In fact, as soon as she heard about him, a woman whose little daughter was possessed by an impure spirit came and fell at his feet. 26The woman was a Greek, born in Syrian Phoenicia. She begged Jesus to drive the demon out of her daughter.

27 “First let the children eat all they want,” he told her, “for it is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to the dogs.”

28 “Lord,” she replied, “even the dogs under the table eat the children’s crumbs.”

29 Then he told her, “For such a reply, you may go; the demon has left your daughter.”

30 She went home and found her child lying on the bed, and the demon gone.

I’m not supposed to criticise this man, but what was he about here?  If he wasn’t being provocative, it could be put down to insensitivity because of tiredness, or some sort of irritation.  Our leaders say He was correcting her attitude.  But if it wasn’t that, if it was a lack of perfect response, where does that leave us in terms of my Friend Jesus’ perfection?  He;s my friend, I can’t talk about Him and theorise about Him like this.  But I just have, and for the usual reasons it has to remain.

But back to the perfect man who got angry when the person he told threw a glass of water at him.

In the Bible David said that God’s enemies were his enemies, and that he hated them with a perfect hatred.  I’ve heard it said that David did not have the complete revelation that we have today.  Would they say that of this occasion?  No, not all of them.  There would be different opinions backed up with chapter and verse and personal experience they felt was surrounded with the approval of those that matter to them.  I know for sure there would be some who agonised more over the truth than to be satisfied with that low standard of agreement, potentially low, at least, but I don’t know how many.

I got to this stage with St Barnabas’ Church.  They opposed me in every way, locking down on me and preaching at me.  I had read a book recommended by a Christian counsellor, on boundaries, which said that negative emotions were a sign that something was wrong.  I was going home, time after time, feeling devastated, and one night in bed I was frightened by a feeling of hatred.  I was also angry, I thought they were opposing what God was doing in my life.  I find that a bit embarrassing now.

But that was the verse which came to my mind, and I embraced it, because I couldn’t get rid of the feeling of hatred, so I actively justified it.  Hindsight says if I had done this or that . . . but nothing within me which is saying anything gets much chance to be heard at the moment, it is silenced by the violence around me, and as soon as I can strongly own and express anything from within, the harassment starts without and I am left too hysterical to cope.  I’m trying to argue something when I want to scream and beg and cry, since every time I feel I can and should surrender I refuse it.  I feel I should go up to them, apologise and ask what the problem is, then we could begin to sort everything out.  That is what I see and what I feel condemned by.  Her hallelujah makes me feel joy, but what about the rest?  It is chaos.  It is also illegal, and they know what I think of that.  It is the word I am reacting to, not the people or their activity.  I feel she even steals, with her occult violence, the tone of joy which would be in my own voice if I said it myself.  That must be where the confusion comes in.  I can’t validate this, it is so wrong.  I’m not the only one who hears them, and not everyone rejoices, I am sure.  I don’t want to be patronised by people saying poor Sue, come home.  I want people to focus on the issue of chain-yanking, and if I could focus on it myself it would help!  I try to be serious and have to be humorous.  Why?  I feel thumped in the head and I can’t cope with the pain.  There is no point waiting for a better time.  It never happens.  Don’t get bogged down in the circumstantial stuff that comes pouring out just because I don’t know how to edit it away. They seem to feel it when I calm down and start justifying them in my mind, and I hear them say dobre with a smile.  But I know what they are doing and it isn’t OK?  Or is it here?  Is this a valid and acceptable expression of Christianity here?  If it is, I’m out of step.  I feel as if I want to join in, like a party.  Go up and say hello and bubble along with them.

It’s a form of psychological harassment and censorship.  Who wants to read the silage that I insist on letting pour out of me, or allow by default, instead of being a normal, generous, kind, forgiving, friendly person and neighbour?

The point I was going to make was that I think there is something wrong with the theory and theology of leaders who can make a good and positive thing out of this incident of cruel chain-yanking in one of their traditions major heroes.

If that anger from the man came out of a damaged emotional place, it was incredibly cruel for him to expose it in that way.  Granted I don’t know the whole story, maybe it was just a bit of robust male joshing. I don’t know how the man took it after his anger was over.  But what if it wasn’t from a damaged emotional place?  What if it was the perfect reaction to such mischief and malice towards what he believed God had said to him?  Then who is the laughingstock?  If there should be one at all.  If our emotions are appropriate to the situation then they are perfect in that situation, aren’t they, so what he said wasn’t disproved at all.  In a sense we are perfect, and not just by imputation.  In a sense, as individuals, we are perfect, if people don’t interfere with us.  But they do, when we are too vulnerable to resist or realise.  I can’t do this, I’m tired and hurt.  I can’t think and write it through.  I’m mixing everything up all over the place when I started out believing I knew exactly what I wanted to say and where I wanted to go with it.  I’m already editing after first reading, and that isn’t doing me much good either.  I am ill and traumatised, I must be, to put this abortion out.

Another thing:  I believe this thing we call robust joshing is itself a manifestation and denial of pain.  Or is it just a healthy switching off every now and again?  It must be.  It must be me that is crazy.  So someone invite me to come and have some fun?  To live your whole life in the perfect therapy session and healing moment after healing moment, at least one participant has to be perfect.  And where have I got this idea from that therapy and healing is all about deep and querulous and earnest talk and tears and quietly and meditatively going about your business? ‘Tain’t, is it?

But what if, instead of throwing water over him and laughing at his anger, he had accepted the statement with respect and watched his friend over a period and tried to understand what he was saying and learn something instead?

It is thump in the back salvation.  I’m wondering if I am being a pathetic wimp if I object to that.  The people I have felt close enough to to love over recent years, and want to model myself on, I am thinking possibly I have only seen them awkward and afraid and desperate and making an effort, because of me and my situation.  Maybe they too are back thumpers and I have just not seen it, and I myself need to enter the real world of rough and tumble where people do not always treat each other with reverence and respect and it is OK.

????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

OK that is it.  That is my communication after being butchered by upstairs and everything knowing my account/computer is being hacked is doing to me, turned into a bucket of unmentionable stuff and screaming.

Enjoy!

Not meaning to be self-righteous here, because obviously I am not perfect, but as a victim of constant neighbour violence and harassment, including at illegal times, over the last six months, by a household that mixes it all up with ‘dobre’ and ‘hallelujah’, I have tried to confront them and appeal to their consciences in words about what they are doing and the right way to deal with their problems (go to the police), and it has made little difference, if any.  The same house producing consistent violence and harassment is also producing consistent hallelujahs and dobres and recently men in tears, and I am a single foreign woman.   I’m not sure I understand this.  It is like one Bulgarian says that there is no mafia control, and another says most business in Bulgaria is controlled by, if not owned by, the mafia, and I encounter all kinds of stuff, as a stranger everywhere I go, which says people know me and where I am from, and sometimes I feel so much love and shame and guilt I think the mafia might be a good thing, not a bad thing, and the violence (and mentally I even put THAT in inverted commas now) really is a legitimate form of discipline and correction that a community imposes on people who are out of step, without resorting to a police service in which people whose job, which they are paid for and from which they can be sacked, one hopes (but check this out for the official policy to police accountability in Bulgaria in 2009), gives them authority they sometimes, if not often, use for abuse and contempt.  I feel the love and sincerity is among the normal, powerless people, including the people above my apartment who target my ears with violence when I’m using the toilet or shower or in bed or any time they seem to feel the need, and who say hallelujah and dobre and cry, as I cry myself.

I have to leave this weekend.  My landlord, who has known all about this for ages because I have told him in detail, has decided to throw me out without ever having sought legal support for me, knowing that my own attempts have failed.

After Cain killed Abel and God asked him where he was, Cain said, “am I my brother’s keeper?”

I feel as if my upstairs neighbours are my keepers.  Or that they see me as an animal in captivity for observation and experimentation, or as a subject of some form of pest control.

Until a few years ago I was never one for talking about vibes and energy, but now it is unavoidable.  Every time my mind goes into recreative and positive relaxation a sound from them is imposed on it, usually vocal, normally sounding, today, like ‘dobre’, though it could be ‘hallelujah’ or banging.  Throughout the day, all day, every day.  I feel it as ‘don’t you dare’.  Every movement I make they put a sound or comment on top.  She screams like a demon when I come and go.  They do tapping stuff.  She goes from sweet to hate in a second, unless there is another woman there.  My mind can’t cope with it.

Also I have people turning up and ringing my doorbell and when I answer there is no one there.

Every time I become animated within myself and feel I can express myself in a way I like, their voice imposes itself, and I am here like a guilty and frightened thing, desperate and constantly seeing my own expressive life being killed by what can only be called aggressive psychic interference.

I sneezed a few minutes ago.  Sneezing, when my mind feels so bound, feels cleansing, and I like the recovery period, the seconds afterwards.  But as soon as I finished sneezing one of them said ‘dobre’.  I take hold of what I am writing now and give it a mental affirmation as it presents itself, and they speak uncomfortably and as if objecting.  It frightens the life out of me.  That phrase has a whole new meaning for me these days.

I went to the toilet and as I came out one of them said ‘dobre’.  I don’t want not to get on with them but they are making it impossible.

They still bang at me when they hear me in the bathroom.  They stir and bang about uncomfortably or deliberately every time sleep becomes restorative or pleasurable or exultant for me.  If I think about it, it is as if they are dragging me around by the hair.

I went to a pizza restaurant yesterday, and there is a children’s play area right in front of it.  Three girls dressed in yellow stopped and stared at me and I thought about the paedophile rumour.  I sat down and a few minutes later one of them shouted out ‘zestoki’ (cruel), which is something I have been heard to shout at my neighbours.  I don’t know where they got that from.  I felt mentally assaulted and raped.  A bit later the children started screaming, really soul-piercing screams I felt invaded by, and a few seconds later a security guard appeared using a mobile phone, and he stared at me.  I’ve been here a long time.  I wondered if something he had done had been responsible for the screaming and the way it made me feel.  I’ve been harassed by security guards for ages now, sometimes mockingly and exultantly.

I had a couple of women come in and act strangely close to me.  One of them was eyeing me with narrow slit eyes, like an animal ready to pounce, and I was blank, I didn’t smile because my mind was preoccupied.   Then she went into a wonderful awesome sociable switched on beauty routine.  The clearest face, the most beautiful, fluttering almond eyes.  Face held up to her man.  I resented it, it seemed theatrical and aggressive.  I noticed she had a child with her, a girl of about 8 or 10 who seemed to be a bit ill-behaved, I can’t quite remember how.  I looked and thought, ‘like mother, like daughter’.   But as I kept looking I realised the girl was uncomfortable and wanted attention that she was being denied, and she kept trying to get it, then she looked bored and wandered off.  And I thought, ‘poor kid, having a mother like that’.

That was when my scepticism and my ‘I don’t believe this’ response kicked in, and I decided to have a good, doubting, examining look at the whole act.  Shortly afterwards they got up and left, but as they walked away it looked almost as if she deliberately divested herself of a character.  Afterwards it seemed to me that the whole atmosphere in the restaurant was changed.  I had felt before that people seemed so happy and relaxed, but afterwards everyone was awkward and trying to recover comfortable and natural behaviour.  I would call it vamping, but she seemed to be presenting herself as one of God’s and nature’s beauties, dominant in her way and empty-headed.

I feel as if I am being malicious now, but I’m not.  I’ve had women doing this around me a lot when I go out, and I don’t know why.  Every time I get a moment of mental light and start thinking about what I am writing or examining it, the voice I find frightening from the woman upstairs when I am trying to write imposes itself and it is like an electric shock saying, ‘thou shalt not’, or ‘I don’t want you to’.

Thinking about it it reminds me that I have betrayed my own intentions and that I came here for the country and the people, not to be separate on a computer all the time.  But it feels like my refuge from their madness and invasiveness, as well as a chain in itself, and they won’t let me have that refuge.  The feeling that I can go to them and be friendly and that it will be welcome imposes itself, or is imposed on me, at the most psychologically inconvenient and resented and rebelled against times.  They have tied me up in knots, these changelings, and left me feeling guilty for not wanting to be available when I think I realise they want me to be.

They still comment when I cough, they still comment when they hear my computer and, if it is songs, at the change of every track.  They bang when I shit and comment when I fart or belch.

Jesus, does anyone understand this and how it makes me feel?  I was going to say, ‘how I feel about it’, because pop psychology in recent years has said that nothing can make you feel something, you feel it for your own reasons.  As I wrote it the man’s voice came in sharp and aggressive, like a knife into my mind, and now I can’t rework or work with anything.  When she opens her mouth it is as if she is piercing the air demanding power or recognition.  It often happens when possibilities and connections open up in my mind that I begin to feel happy and positive about.  So to me she seems to be saying, continually, ‘you owe me’.

One of Shakespeare’s characters ends a play saying, “the world is a stage and we are its actors”.  I was tagging this and thinking about the theatre aspect and watching and being watched, and that that approach to life runs counter, it seems to me, to the approach of the spirituality I have valued that emphasises unselfconsciousness.  I felt it when people started telling us to be vigilant about terrorism threats after 9/11.  Maybe that is my problem and misunderstanding.  If you are educated in the warning signals maybe you don’t go around with the terrorist attack threat constantly in your mind and even when the thought can’t be found, if the right things present themselves you become aware there might be a cause for concern.  To me, life is not for going around being consciously vigilant.

I was writing an email to a solicitor just now, in the cross over between Robert Elms and Danny Baker, and they were doing a slapstick routine, and appeared to be commenting on or anticipating what I was going to write.  I got confused and upset trying to communicate, and in my email I wrote them a little message, “you are savage, radio”.  Straight afterwards his voice became tearful and he talked about slapstick, which was what he had been doing, with my neighbour situation and with my email.  I’ve had violent harassment from them all afternoon, and while I’ve had the radio on they tap at psychologically significant points, and the stalkers on the radio are making it worse.  Danny Baker, you bloody bastard.  ‘Bloody’ literally.  17.45 pm.  He just said ‘my mind’ to sound like ‘Marmite’.  I get so distressed I want to wet myself, and sometimes I have.  They keep tapping and she keeps piping hallelujah.  They refuse to stop, tapping and hallelujah-ing at MY radio.  That is violent, occult harassment.  They are all as bad.  Listen to the violent tones on these men.  Eddie Nestor has just come on.  Banging a drum?  I don’t NEED a drum banging.  I need the criminal harassment and stalking and mental torture to stop and my hiding, cowardly, dishonest authorities to help me.  The man upstairs keeps going to the toilet and it always feels deliberate and sometimes I feel as if he is pissing into my mouth.  He just said ‘wee’ in a pointed way, on the radio.  This is gross, and I don’t believe it is just my mind.  Fiona with the travel (17.15) has just said ‘first with the rose’ instead of roads.  ‘Rose’ is a euphemism for urine.  I wrote the time wrong, Bulgarian.  Eddie Nestor just made a point of saying ‘nay’ Bulgarian for no, and talked about ‘around the world’.  I can’t appear right in this, even if I am.  I think they are trying to get me back in hospital.  I want to wet myself.  I don’t want to go to the toilet, I want to wet myself.

Chris in Crouch End is a Christian.  He just used her to say to me, ‘stop dressing inappropriately and you won’t be attacked’.  Whatever he meant to convey by it, he did use her for that.  And he just said Dr Paranisi to be heard as paranoid.  Talking about infertility.

I want to wet myself because I am scared and I can’t take this, and I know for certain that no one is going to acknowledge the truth about this.  I dread having to live with this for the rest of my non-suicide-terminated life.

Look at this.

Punch Drunk

I’m hurt, I’m punch drunk.  Every day, people shouting, banging, barking and vomiting noise.  I always feel bad about leaving a bad situation, because my church leaders have historically said that if you can’t be a Christian where you are, you can’t be a Christian anywhere.  I’m not sure how that works when you feel as if you are being torn apart and having your throat savaged by packs of human dogs.  What does it mean then, to be a Christian where you are in that situation?  People have said to me before, in different situations, that I don’t have to stay, but in light of the previous statement that has felt like a taunt, or at least a contradiction.

I’m in a hotel.  There are men shouting like savages on a football pitch, angrily, defiantly, power-grabbingly.  This is Plovdiv.  As far as I am concerned, these people are angry and still murderous.  I feel sick.  I really can’t cope any more.  It’s satanic, it’s disgusting, and for all the support I have in my community, both here and in London, I might as well be homeless.  I’m not, but I might as well be, because the police don’t care.  I feel really sick.  These people, men and women, puncture the air with shouts and banging, even at illegal times, and if you challenge them they are all smooth, sometimes, as if they are happy to accommodate my requirement that they revert to acting legally, or as if they are not wrong in the first place.  I feel sick with fear and desperation, and as for the church . . . visit www.christiancentre.org and listen to the Sunday morning, Easter morning sermon, Laurence James-Davis, listen to him shouting, catch the moment of guilty registering in his voice a little later on apparently, to me, knowing he is all noise and no substance, that his shouting is not appropriate, but still he continues.  That is what these people are like here.  Is this the kind of Christianity they have swallowed and are acting out against me?  Dominionism.  Make some noise.  I read in a Christian book, David Wilkerson, I think, that empty cans make the most noise.  These people’s noise, and the way it savages my consciousness, deliberately, sometimes, I am absolutely sure, is literally sickening.

I bought some new clothes last week.  A pack of dogs – sorry, men – passed me and called me a slut.

I went to the police with the violent harassment thing with my neighbours, and they said something about immoral woman and prostitute and told me to leave the station, suggesting by their attitude that they might treat me roughly if I didn’t comply.  Every time I think and get quiet to express myself, these men shout into the air.  This is the most externalised spiritual battle I have ever been part of.  They bark into the air, going straight for my throat, and seem to think it is reasonable.  If you challenge them they laugh or treat you like an idiot.

I can’t cope.  I feel emotionally and mentally raped.  I really can’t cope.  I have no safe place to go.  Even the church is full of defiant and evasive liars shouting from the platforms.  Colin Dye talked about Judas on Sunday (or was it the Chinese guy at 2.30?) and talked about his betrayal and suicide, as if the two belonged together.  That is old pentecostal teaching, and I have swallowed it.  I believe it is right and reasonable, and that to see suicide in any other light is dishonest.  I think if you dissect it finely enough and examine it under a strong enough microscope you can’t honestly come to any other conclusion.

So is there no level of pain or abandonment or isolation that can justify feelings of wanting to die?  Are all such feelings evidence that, somehow, at some level, you are or have been treacherous in some way?  Even if you have been, if you have sadistic, dishonest rub your nose in it people dealing with you, how are you supposed to feel?  They give you no way back to life.  They themselves are wrong, but they insist you take your place in life again on their terms.

These men and their shouting is making me feel violent and desperate.  They are real madhouse material.  I think they are stupid and dangerous and should be taken off the streets.  I think it shows that I feel somehow responsible for them, that I feel this way.  But they are gross and I’m a woman.  The way their behaviour collides with my mind and feelings is completely terrifying me, in my situation as it is.  They are grossly defiant.  Every utterance of theirs is an insistence that it is OK.  There is nothing in their minds that is recognisable to me as being in any way decent.

New readers take note, some of these people are named on my blog, most are not, in most cases because I don’t know them.  And when I say ‘imaginary friends’, some of them are friends in both my imagination and their own, and most of them are friends only in their own imaginations.  And obviously, throughout this communication, ‘friend’ can be substituted with ‘enemy’.

Or, to all stalkers and computer hackers everywhere.

(Shall I do it Kafkaesque? I think this is Kafkaesque, but I’m not sure).

They always say that, you know.  It wasn’t my fault.  I didn’t want to do it. They made me.  I had to do it to keep my job.  I was just obeying orders.  Yes, I knew people were real people, yes, I knew I was contributing to suffering and in some cases, most cases, authorising or executing people’s deaths.  I became a really cruel person to cope with that.  I couldn’t handle my conscience in the job any other way.  They disgust me, these people.  I, I, I.  I did it because this and I had to be this and that to handle it, but I never really wanted to.  It was my upbringing, at the time I had no choice.  Of course I’m sorry for the people I made suffer and killed, but I had no choice.  It was my job, you see. I was under orders.  I was under orders.  I had to obey orders.  I had a family to feed.  I had to keep my job.

No, it isn’t Kafkaesque, I thought it could have been, I thought I could do it, I felt in the ‘zone’, but . . .

My neighbours have just started up, hmm-ing and banging.  They know when my alarm goes off in the morning now.  I don’t normally use one, I haven’t used one for years, but I decided I wanted to set a time to be woken up or to mark the desired time of my latest waking, so that I would be setting the terms of my own waking, in the hope that being woken up by violence would stop.  But they know what time it goes off now.  When I came back from the police, at around the time my alarm had previously been set to go off (it was early, about 5.30.  I decided to let them have a wake up call on their own dirty terms, by day three she was screaming at me to shut up.  Can’t understand.  They have been at me relentlessly and mercilessly for ten weeks, in every private place and with more injurious means) a sound like a loud siren went through the whole building.  Retaliation. I don’t know what they were expecting.  I lay there in shocked silence, maybe angry, I can’t remember.  Probably defiant, but I can’t remember.  Possibly not defiant.  I had already changed my alarm to go off at a far more decent time, 8.15.  (If you want to know what my neighbours are doing as I write this, read yesterday’s ‘Odd Thoughts’ entry.  I won’t rehash old stuff again today).  When it went off at 8.15 they commented, souded disgruntled for some reason, but I don’t know why.

They try to pass themselves off as sweet, playful children.  Or she does, anyway.

Anyway, yesterday they made a noise over my bed just before the alarm went off.  Today they did the same thing.  I can’t remember how it went exactly, the order or anything.  I think a noise just before it went off.  It went off and I let it run out.  On purpose.  I didn’t switch it straight off.  Normally I would have done, like a nervous, obedient by training servant or something.  It ran out, and it went off again.  They seemed a bit annoyed.  I felt I had a point to make about whose home this is.  Anyway, as soon as it stopped, she imitated the sound of its buzzing, then tapped, then ran her tongue off, but not at me, almost as if I wasn’t there.  I don’t know if it is my own shock and grossed-outness and failure of resources to handle such grossly outrageous behaviour (is it outrageous by Bulgarian standards?  I still don’t know.  The days of the People’s Court are not that long gone.  I wonder how much it has been left behind in their thinking and practice, whatever their written laws say.  if my experience is anything to go by, it has not been left that far behind with a lot of people, even hallelujah-touters.  I say touters.  There is no guarantee that they are Christians just because they say hallelujah.  Some things, I believe, are not a matter of Christian education).  But back to my pre-bracket sentence.  Maybe it is my state of shock which causes the coincidence between my thoughts freeing up or creativity beginning to flow or separating from them in anyway, and the violently invasive and or ugly interjections which hit/meet those times.  My change has no intention.  It doesn’t happen by intention.  It might come out of a process of thinking, that I decide I am free to pursue my day apart from their terms and I begin to plan it, but most times I don’t even get that far.  All of this is silent.  But their actions are intentional.  They speak, loudly over my air, like a spiritual pronouncement, and I am sure it is intentionally. . . . it’s too weird to explain.  Or they bang.  If I cough natually and unguardedly, they bang.  They did this morning.  It is obvious which comes first in that situation.  But which comes first and what causes what when I am silent and they are noisy?  Are these wrong questions to ask?  Are these questions in themselves the nature of occultism?  Am I wrong to be concerned with these questions?  (Reminder to myself, mental illness, stalking, harassment and occult.  The bit below my blog title.  That is the reason for my questions.  It is not because I am proud or relationally inadequate.)

So here I am, I’ve been whipped and dragged a merry dance again.  I don’t know why I write it all down, it feels like the only way.   I want to go to the toilet but am afraid.  I want to shit, and they start saying dobre and hallelujah.  Every time.  Or banging.  I’ve always believed (she just ejaculated ‘dobre’ as I typed my bold italics.  See yesterday Odd Thoughts. But then see the rest of today’s post and know I haven’t a clue.  Before that he was purring prayer-ministry- type ‘hmm’ agreements.  They are stamping their territory today, still refusing to go to the police) that kind of thing is indecent.  Are they trying to force me out with indecent and violent invasion of privacy?  It looks that way.  I say I’ve always believed, but that isn’t really true.  It has never come up before for me to have an opinion about it one way or another, not even in my basement flat in london, really.  I should just stop writing instead of letting it take over my posts.  I don’t know why I don’t.  Probably a combination of exorcism, appeasement, stubbornness, fear and blind panic.  Outrage.

So, if I can retrieve something of my original intention.  What I was going to say was, to my stalkers, my imaginary friends and enemies, known and unknown, media, church, government and ‘other’ . . . .  I know . . . nothing.  She aims at my throat, and I know nothing.

So I’ll ask a question instead, which I intended to ask anyway.

OK, I can hear you stalking me.  You say you like me.  You say this is good, and that is good, but you’re not sure about this, and we need to back off and be careful, etc., etc.

But like, you like me, yeah?  From your stalking of me, that is the impression you have of your feelings about me.  That feels good to you.  You trust your own judgment, and you are happy because you believe I am worth stalking, because you end up believing good about me, and that makes you happy, and that feeds into your output in your programmes, or you can weave it into your sermons or policies or other presentations.

But what about how I feel, and what it does to me?

You are like expectant parents, cooing and taling over a baby in the womb.

But . . .

If you invaded that baby’s person and environment, as you do mine, for the same kinds of assessment and analysis and judgment, what kind of monster or creature do you think might survive to emerge?  Someone being stalked without their knowledge, or without proper acknowledgment of the fact when they realise, has no more resources to cope than a growing foetus, and no more chance of survival.  How, in your thinking, have you managed to change a person’s status from being a victim of your injustice and kidnap, effectively, into that of someone who should respond with gratitude and humility to your recognition (true or false) that they are and have a gift, and your terms of operation or utilisation?

We don’t do answers on a postcard these days, do we?  I was just thinking of the person who said that (Cindy Kent) and her part in this.  I could have expressed it very acceptably and decently and reasonably, but that foul, occult hallelujah indecently harassing criminal demon-child of a woman upstairs just made a verbal snatch for my thought.  That is what she always does.  They are always telling me I have no right.  Whatever I do.  How grossly entitled can some people feel and believe themselves to be?  I challenged her and she giggled.  That is gross in itself, given the ugliness and criminality she operates in most of the time.

If I don’t get this out, you will play with me until I do.  But you will anyway, and make me feel disgusting and guilty or disempowered and vulnerable, whichever fits.

A Different World

Here we go again, whenever my words and emotions connect there is a bang from upstairs, and suddenly both my words and emotions are in ruins.

I was going to say something like, I’m just watching a news report on BBC World News, about a killing in Afghanistan, and looking at the uncomfortable stoicism of some of the people who seem to be presiding men, and young boys crying alone and no one comforting them.   Maybe no one was there, I don’t know.  But I was thinking I am so pleased for the therapy and ministry movement in the West and that our men aren’t expected to do the stiff upper lip and upright bearing thing anymore. 

Earlier there was a story, in Extreme Weddings, about a couple getting married, an arranged marriage, and the woman was shown on her wedding day, and she didn’t look to me just overwhelmed, she looked grief-stricken, but I might have misinterpreted it.  And the older women dancing like minarets, and everyone doing the strained happy thing that people do at weddings everywhere, because it is supposed to be a happy day.  I wonder if so many marital problems start right there, at the insistence, whether it is true or not, that everyone is happy on the wedding day.  The expectation that that is how it should be, whether it is successfully carried through or not.  But I looked at that report and wanted to come home to England.  Ever the wimp and melodramatist.

This is interesting.  It refreshes everything I know and fits about 80% of what I am experiencing here and have been for years.  From the psychiatric point of view, I particularly found the concept of ‘gaslighting’ interesting, and thought it was valuable to see it raised in this format, which lays claim to professional consideration.  It is about setting out to drive people crazy, saying things were never done and never happened.  Apparently it is a 1950s term.  If someone like me said it, I would just be called paranoid, and have been.

It’s a 10 page article, but it is a quick read with a lot of space.  It is overall a checklist.  I found it on a yahoo answer to a woman with OCD who was experiencing occult attacks, physically, leaving marks.  The person who answered her said that abuse can open the door to the demonic world, which I already knew and have heard in sermons and read in books.  This article doesn’t talk about the demonic, it is about abuse.

I undertook the search because of the things I have said happen in my apartment between me and my neighbours, and the fact that I was reading a blog this afternoon by a woman with OCD, and commenting on her blog made me think about doing a search on the connection between OCD and the occult and the paranormal.

I am sure it can be said the other way round with as much validity, that the occult can also lead to abuse.

I berate myself about my own obsession and inadequacies and evasion of my own responsibility to just go out and get on with my day, which I insist to myself would be easier to do if I did that from the beginning rather than reacting to them.  But this article says that one of the things an abuser will do is prevent their victim (it uses that language) from leaving the room during an argument, and it seems obvious this can also be done through psychological means, through deception, through threats and intimidation and inflicting trauma. and also that the space you can be prevented from leaving can be just as much a psychological space as a physical one.

Keeping people in a psychological space is used in selling and broadcasting, keeping a person’s attention, I suppose it is also appropriate to see certain kinds of cyber attack and interventionism the same way.  You are not allowed to act or think independently.  Threat can be involved.  I think it usually is, even if resolved into humour, but that is only my thought, I don’t have statistical evidence, but perhaps someone else does.

The search I put into Bing was ‘OCD occult paranormal’.  I found the answer which linked to this article just a few down on the first page.  Yahoo answers, or something like that.  Definitely Yahoo.

Being up to my eyeballs in it, I think this is a good read.

See it here.

When I was in my teens I used to like to wear maxi dresses, especially to church.  I felt good in them.  We weren’t allowed to wear trousers and I didn’t feel comfortable in shorter dresses, I felt self-conscious.  Maureen Shearman, Andrew Shearman’s wife, brother of David, sat opposite me at the lunch table in church one day and had a conversation which didn’t include me with someone else next to her, about how maxi dresses were a way of attracting attention to yourself, and that was seen as a negative thing in my church.  Pride and vanity.  I was a fat teenager not allowed to wear trousers in church.  The right words to describe how I felt feel ridiculous because of the present harassment.  Self-conscious, mortified.  They don’t feel ridiculous, they feel not mine, so not helpful.  They should be mine. Alongside everything else these neighbours are stealing from me.  I’m terrified of them, they are so grossly indecent in their insistence on making me believe they are right, whether they believe it or not.  Especially the men.  I need the affection of kind men.  I think they are playing on that fact to continue their control.  I didn’t mean to write about them, I never do.  Through making me feel I can’t continue with what I do intend to write about, they insinuate themselves into everything.  Perhaps I should start using another colour for the terrified and desperate and angry material they provoke, then people can skip it if they want to.

The dress Kylie Minogue is wearing in this picture is reminiscent of the long nightie I borrowed from my grandmother (I’m not going to say what we actually called her because when I did when I was small I was put down for it by another child) to go on Summer camp to Southsea and Portsmouth, while my dad was still alive and I was in the C of E at that time, I think.  The staff were called after the Wombles, if I remember rightly.  Maybe I’ve got that wrong, I think we had a Great Uncle Bulgaria,  but I can barely remember that part of it.

I wore a much nicer and more stylish dress, I think, sleeker and not frilly, to take Ray and Jill for dinner at the Nottingham Savoy.  I was really upset because I think I had booked for the main restaurant and a proper dinner, 3 course, 5 course, something like that (when I remember, engage in memory, the people upstairs start getting uncomfortable, clearing their throats, making noises.  I just want to shut them out and it disturbs me deeply, it frightens me that it happens, and I resent it.  I am convinced it is the nature of their own harassment that makes it possible.  They are stealing me from myself, and I can’t initiate facing and confronting the serious issues in my life feeling this way, because I know what a hash other people, left to themselves, have already made of them, and me.  I need myself and my memory and my perception, in my own free space.  Why?  Because if I have to face a trial I want to be able to stand up for myself or at least represent myself accurately, and if I [they are getting more aggressive and banging] have to go to prison I want at least to be able to survive.  If I go in pulped already I won’t be able to.  I’m not afraid of prison.  I’m afraid of what might happen to me if I go in already pulped.  The same applies over the eviction issue, if I’m not allowed to remember and people think they understand better than I do, I might lose my home or retain it on terms I can’t handle, and I’d like to deal with it efficiently up front because I don’t have the money to be able to afford trial and error), and I think we lost it because I was late.  We had to make do with the grill.  (I can’t even experience the healing of my own memories with these people.  My grandmother would have called some of their verbal output shit with sugar on, and my grandmother was a very capable person, she kept things running, until she fell and broke her hip, and even then she did outwork for a local medical company, for very little money, and was always pushed for time and exhausted and upset and harassed, as well as being uncomfortable and in pain.  She worked all day and only stopped to sleep and eat.  She was afraid of hospitals and never got her hip fixed, she refused and no one forced her.  Forced her?  You can tell where I have been.  My neighbours are indecent, imposing themselves on my consciousness as they do, 24/7). 

Anyway, back to the point.  I mentioned Kylie Minogue and her toilet references in my Scritti Politti post 2 or 3 days ago.  Now she appears hunched over looking shame-faced and hiding behind big sunglasses and wearing my grandmother’s nightie to go out in (both the nightie and the dress I have mentioned were the same colour), and I’m wondering why people are using such subterfuge to try to communicate with me and don’t just use direct contact, as they are able.  They ARE able, they can comment on my blog, they can use my email address.  This isn’t fair.  These people, even my family and other past relationships, are being indecently cowardly and harassing in all this.  They should make proper contact, and they know it.  I am living underneath people who are terrifying the life out of me with the deliberateness of their harassment and the depth of the men’s cowardice (or opportunism?) in particular, in harassing a foreign woman and not going to the police, and everyone who knows me or used to know me is just as bad with their coded presentations.  When are you going to see fit to stop and make proper explicit contact about the things you want to make contact about?  Do you have any idea what you are doing to me?  You don’t, do you?  You don’t even care.  You are as bad as my present neighbours and are enabling them in every way. You’ve never cared, throwing in your verbals and pictures from a distance, knowing how to contact me and never doing it.  How can I, feeling so beaten up and dazed from abuse, and frightened when I go out because mentally I’m all over the place with constant flash backs of police and other authorities despising me and not daring to go to them, believe that any of you care?   You care enough for tears and guilt and uncomfortable expressions, but not enough to come close and help.  I need practical, legal help, not psychological and emotional rehabilitation from the people who have been responsible in the first place.  What I am experiencing with these people will continue unchallenged, here and everywhere else, until you people stop your own cowardice and make it stop.

Edit note 7.54pm UK time.  I just added the tag ‘Violence Against Women’.  Apparently it still appears under all the other tags, but it isn’t appearing under this one.  I don’t understand why not.  I tagged it about 5 or 10 minutes ago.  Maybe it’s another instance of WordPress psychological violence against me.  They have been stalking me for ages with bait and switch, a couple of sweet and materially relevant Freshly Pressed posts followed by something psychologically violent straight after, like some form of aversion technique.  AOL does the same thing on its ‘Today’ page.  My browser crashed after I started this note.  When I came back online I was taken back to the Violence Against Women tag page, and before the first post an advert had appeared for hosting your own blog, through WordPress.  I don’t know how that works, if I still have access to the tags page on the main site.  At the bottom of my post an advert had appeared for Pop Pressed and its featured ‘Win-Win’.  If I have a mental health diagnosis which people like these have been exploiting for years to continue in what they have been doing, it would be completely irresponsible of me, and puerile of them, to want to allow a ‘win-win’ situation.   End of edit note.  My blog could disappear any moment.

10.09 pm UK time update:  I just added the tag ‘Fashion’, which I thought was already there, but although it says on that page that it has just been posted, it doesn’t appear.  Unless the tagging system has changed and now too many don’t go through but the ones before do, it appears to be ‘some sort of’ censorship and selection.  This could be something to do with the personalities involved, because when I looked under the Jools Holland page for a previous post after my Scritti Politti post a few days ago, I discovered the one I posted a few months ago was no longer listed.  I think they are trying to make me feel like a naughty little girl who doesn’t automatically have the same publication rights as everyone else.  When I got half way through that last sentence I got a notice saying IE needed to close.  It felt like a message saying, ‘no, that’s not it, don’t post this’.  So is it hands on or do I have a virus, vocabulary activated or something?  Is it protective or harassing, should it be seen as legal or illegal?  I believe it should be seen as illegal.  It is deep manipulation if this is a targeted thing.

Green Gartside, to be exact.  But my ears pricked up as soon as I heard ‘Scritti Politti’, because when I was at the Polytechnic of North London (now London Metropolitan University, I think) studying English, I was in a class with a lecturer called Pat Jackson (so we must have been studying pluralism as critical method.  I think we had to go for another than our main option, in the final year) and she told us she had heard a song which she thought was rubbish, but when she realised it was Scritti Politti she understood how intelligent it was and it made sense to her, or something like that, because the songwriter, or one of the songwriters, in the band had been one of her students.

I can’t remember who it was, if she mentioned his name.  I just did a Wikipedia search and it says they were in Camden but there is no mention of the Polytechnic of North London.  I didn’t look at the biographies of all the band members, only two.  They mention another Polytechnic up North and Art College or something.  I wonder if they have disowned PNL.

I might not have listened if the Jools Holland television programme wasn’t being advertised on the BBC TV iplayer site.  I haven’t listened for the past few weeks, even though I have meant to.  But there is a main feature advert, so my listening can hardly be called coincidence.

How exposed do I want to feel?  It is hard, when everytime I try to look at something that would make me vulnerable to say, lady sheepy upstairs opens her throat and utters.  It must be something to do with the violence, that they are able to do that.  The hysteria I feel at the invasion takes away my ownership of what I want to say.  And for me that feels mentally and psychologically dangerous.  These people are demons feeding on my human blood, sticking their fangs into my emotionally open and meditative throat.  Keeping it open by their constant, doglike behaviour.

As I was saying, how exposed do I want to feel?  The Wikipedia article says Green Gartside has worked with Kylie Minogue.  Kylie Minogue was on Jools Holland’s New Year Hootnanny programme.  Among other things they were doing their usual toilet stuff, and in her mix which made it obvious Kylie used the word I used to use as a child for faeces, ‘a-a’ (said like the first syllable of ‘apple’ twice), and she performed an appropriate body movement while leaning on the piano.  There was more in that programme, but I didn’t get to record it for some reason I can’t remember.  But where did she get it from, because she definitely had it and used it.

I’m looking at my ‘free speech’ tag and feeling guilty about exposing this, because I told Tommy Boyd he could do anything he wanted with anything I gave him.  But I didn’t mean make a show out of it for years, while I am still living under people who are psychically going for my tongue and leaving me struggling to breathe.  They just banged again, just now.  Three sharp bangs.  They do that when they feel a change in energy or something.  Since they do it when sleep approaches, every time, that is the only explanation I can find for it.  So understand something of my complete fear and desperation.  When I lose it I shout a them to shut up.  I just did, and one of them rapped again and another went and peed.  This is a regular pattern.  I’m beginning to get used to it and see it as normal and not gross, and feel as if these people could possibly be friends.  There is something wrong with my mind,. isn’t there?  I’m bombarded with it all the time, from the media and everywhere.  There is no refuge.  Is this brainwashing?  Indecently intimidating brainwashing and dumbing down, or what?  They shut their doors at me when I go in and out, but do all this to me over my flat.  I began to dream about how I wanted relationships in my new home to be, when I get it, and they did it then as well.  They are holding me hostage.  I’m in Plovdiv.  It might be stupid to give my exact address.  My leaders know.  Knowing this, and that they are leaving me here, or trying to woo me, makes me feel as sick as being here with these gross human beings, whom to call dogs might make me a target for the RSPCA for cruelty to the real thing.

All of my stalkers and blog readers are pawing over me affecting intimacy and the right to identify and instruct, and not one of them is making proper committed contact.  Is it any wonder I can’t cope with life?

I just got up.  I went to the toilet.  My upstairs neighbours started fluttering over me and expressing signs of distress – because I’m going to the toilet?  Next thing I know, I’m thinking about what I want to say about it on my blog and am trying to approach it kindly, when savage voice zhena (woman) cries out again, straight into my head.

This is constant, I need it to stop.  My eviction procedure has gone into its second stage and so far I have not felt able to touch it – because I just can’t think straight.  So I’m naming names.  Nick Clegg, you lovely boy, don’t just bang about on your podium, imitating, as you think, the banging from my neighbours (assuming that you have read my blog and that was what you were doing yesterday).  Do something!  I emailed you, and you didn’t reply.  Now DO something other than a dramatic presnentation in parliament.  Contact me properly.  Please.  If that is appropriate and not taking what is properly a legal issue and making it a party political issue.

And while I am on the subject of parliament, for the past two days it has been impossible to watch it live streamed on the internet.  What is going on?  I suppose I can safely assume that I am not important enough for it to have anything to do with me.

I’ve sent Joan Ruddock, my MP, all the emails connected with my eviction and asked for replies.  I have received none.  I did this at the beginning, over a month ago.  From something that was said, by her, I think, it appears she is on strike over me until she gets the gratitude she believes she is entitled to, as if I have to prove myself to her.  The first time I went to see her she wouldn’t let me talk and all but threw me out of her surgery.  She stood up to dismiss me in a way which made me feel that if I didn’t go, the next step would be calling the police.  I have mixed feelings about her, I think she has tried to be nice, and I’m really upset about this. 

I was thinking about how I wanted to word that last sentence to most accurately express my feelings and say what I wanted to say, when my neighbours upstairs banged, leaving me with so great a feeling of desperation and outrage and enormity I didn’t know what to do.  Whatever words I had, or connection with the feelings I wanted, they went, as always. I continue to assert it is their awful mix of hallelujahs and violence and personal invasiveness which is causing this.  I say this kind of constant occurence is the result of their witchcraft.  I’m terrified.  I feel raped in my soul.  I feel as if I can’t speak without speaking to them.  I am effectively their hostage.  Or am I just hostage to my resentment and fear of all the prejudice and discrimination I face here continually, because of the way I am dressed and the way I look?  Security people in supermarkets relax when they see me get my money out, and I think that is gross.  Where before they have marched me and commanded me as if I am beneath them.  But I get my money out and suddenly I am not.  I was in Sofia a few weeks ago.  I wanted to be taken to a hotel in a taxi, and several drivers rudely and aggressively refused.

There is no such thing as public opinion, because the public is made up of many people who hold many different opinions, and who are confused about th eir opinions and change them often, or are paralysed into inactivity or other manifestations of distress.

So I’m wondering how this became an accepted and acceptable concept in the first place?  It is a handy concept to impose, for some people and organisations.  Is it about making money and controlling people, or what?  I can’t think of anything else at the moment.

If you can invoke the concept of public opinion, you can use it not only to say ‘this is good and this is bad’, but also ‘this person is good, and this person is bad’.  In some societies the ‘good’ people can kill the ‘bad’ people for lesser crimes than murder.  That is not to say that killing people for murder is good (though for them it might be preferable to a lifetime of interment). 

I was going to say why should we be punitive by making the punishment last a lifetime, but then I thought about the possibility of change and rehabilitation which wouldn’t be available to them, or us, if we killed them.  Maybe, if we want to be really kind, we should give people an option of the death sentence or a lifetime’s imprisonment or stuck on a psychiatric ward on drugs.  If we are going to argue for voluntary euthanasia and the right to assisted suicide I can’t see why not.  And it might sort out the prison space problem and problems in the economy too, because we wouldn’t be having to pay for them.

You could argue that a life in prison or on psychiatric drugs is not the kinder option, if the person would prefer to get the whole thing out of the way immediately and just die.  Why should we want to deprive a criminal of that option, unless we ourselves are sadistically and viciously punitive?  But then there are others who are sadistically and viciously punitive in the other direction who would say, ‘and a good thing too, taking our space and costing us money’, but they might have a harder time maintaining that if the option of the death penalty was seen as a kindness rather than the ultimate punishment.

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