Tag Archive: police

Happy New Year, Everyone!

Yeah, like, out with the old, and in with the new.  And I really mean that ‘out’.  Just listen how hard I say it, and how quickly I get it into my post.  I think I’m following some bad modelling, it’s what comes of watching too many news type programmes.

Actually, in this context, I don’t mean it at all.  It’s just a time to ritualise hope and good intentions, and little more than a superstitious observation. Very handy though, for some people.

I think of this in the context of what the apostle Paul said in Galatians when he said he feared for them, because they observed special days and times and seasons.  That’s my first reference point.

Then I remember that, in the Old Testament, there were laws for observing different times, if not instructions to do so.  I think it’s probably instructions, but I won’t be dogmatic, because I haven’t read it recently, that part.

Was one of them wrong and, if not, what changed in between times?  And why do we go with the old Jewish festivals instead of taking notice of Paul?

I don’t understand and, if you say you do, why should I believe you?

OK.  I started off in that way because I just read a comment on TB’s blog about sarcasm.  I didn’t want to say any of that about New Year, because right at this moment I really don’t care.  I do care, in that I am not participating in the happiness and I think I’ve just been stubborn and hurt myself.

I was thinking in the shower (as one does), though I have been registering it for a long time, that the most painful part for me of being where I am at the moment is that I think it is all my fault.  I’ve done this to myself.  No one has done it to me.  That’s what I’m thinking.  Rightly or wrongly. On the deepest level, and believing everything I have been taught about personal responsibility, whatever anyone else has done to me . . .

People hit you when you’re down, have you noticed?  That’s why I always try to close everything perfectly, because if I don’t people, including Christians, take advantage of it. They work off what they see here but never see fit to make contact. From Christians it’s worse, because they are the ones who taught me to repent when I’m wrong, and make restitution where possible.  Yet they don’t.  But they keep going for my head.  They just keep talking about it and making observations which ought to lead them to repentance, but in terms of the people they hurt and harm, how many of us do they look out and say something which would at least show willing?  I wonder if they have got as far as putting up physical barricades at their studio doors yet?  Nah, no way.  They don’t need to.  They’ve got the police moving at their beck and call.

I was going to say that these days you have to get past reception first, or was that just something they put me through but don’t do to everyone else?

I was also thinking, before what I thought in the shower, that I want to do what is right.  But also that I have tried, legally, to go by what I believe to be ‘the book’, but it is those in power and authority which have refused to respond to that on the same terms the rest of us, the uninitiated into grace and favour options, have to.  Grace and favour = come on, we’ll deal with it, we don’t have to tell everyone, it’s just our little secret, you’re good, you’re part of the answer?  Rather than dealing openly in the ways provided by the law (which might indeed be open to interpretation, but surely not that much?)  I’ve heard people say the practice of law is an art.  I thought if there are clear rules and regulations it ought to be nearer to an applied science?  People saying it’s an art and open to interpretation has pulled the rug from under my feet when it comes to having the confidence to try to move forward.

They appeal to me with such emotion it makes me feel I know I would not be harmed in any way if I went back to London, and I’m a bad person not to go.  But if that is the case (sorry, but here I go again), why can’t they make a formal commitment to that?

I feel like a cornered animal, or a felon.  Their ability to pull the mental health act on me is always held on to and continually thrown in my face.  How can I do what is right when the people I need to trust are acting in such a perverted way and a way so subversive of the proper process of law?  Is surrender on a point of law legal itself if the people who would be handling it are not acting with full legal compliance and openness and regard for human rights themselves?  In spite of the fact that they hold office and seem to be asking me to come home (or is that just the way the news makes it look?) would I be acting legally myself if I acted on the legally uncommitted emotions of those to whom, because of their office, disobedience is shameful?  I’ve gone almost as far as I can, to the point of almost exhausting the internal options open to me.  I have big reservations about the European Court of Human Rights.  I don’t know how much these people work hand in glove.  I know that not many appeals from the UK are successful, if what I heard on the news is true.  I suppose it must be.

Thinking in those terms, just this moment I’ve had a new thought: does the European Court of Human Rights ‘lose’ people’s files?  It seems to me that, in some cases, they must know well ahead of a person approaching them that that person’s human rights are being breached, and yet if they don’t move to help even before they are formally approached by the people who lack confidence anyway, including confidence in them, what kind of a body does that really make them?  How can I approach a body which I have every reason to believe has looked on for ages and not intervened?  These awful, dishonest, self-seeking, self-protecting traitors, if that is what they have done?  If that is what they do the whole system is an embarrassment to everyone, and especially to those who need it.

I’m assuming there is openness and honesty behind closed doors between the heads of state.  That’s what this meandering is based on. 

Joan Ruddock, my MP, knows.  I’ve asked her senior case worker, if not Joan directly, if I can have a copy of the correspondence which has gone between Joan and my housing association at my request, if that is permissible.  It was at that point they chose to terminate the correspondence between me and them.  That request received no acknowledgement whatsoever, nor has any email I have sent them since.  If I don’t explicitly engage them they won’t engage, and having tried to engage them on whether or not I am allowed copies of the emails between my housing association and themselves, they have refused or failed to respond.  That was about 2 months ago.  Don’t you assume enough of a sufficient working relationship between yourself and your MP to expect that if you forward any obviously distressed emails you have sent to your housing association, even without comment because they are sent in the heat of fighting for yourself, that your MP should respond?  That was what I expected.  I know they have a lot of work to do (people I approach keep telling me that), but I am part of that workload, in some cases I am part of that workload by law, yet they turn to me and say they are busy, or refuse to follow through as they should and as they promised?  And then, in the case of my housing association, they send me an email just before Christmas, having refused to answer the questions and provide the information which might make me feel more secure about going back to live in one of their properties, asking me if I have informed the Housing Benefit people that I am not living in the flat at the moment.  But thinking about it, while the housing association recognises my tenancy . . . no, maybe that’s a loophole.  Maybe I’m not entitled to keep receiving housing benefit.  But the housing association took over everything to do with my housing benefit years ago, without even consulting me.  That’s a nice one to pull out of the hat when you ask them if they have kept proper records of your tenancy and of the accusations made that landed you in hospital and of who made them.  When you say you think it might be illegal if they haven’t kept those kinds of records, being empowered to make the kinds of decisions they do about people without proper consultation.  My housing officer’s boss wrote back to me and said I had been told “numerous times” that the association now considered the matter closed and they are not prepared to talk about it.  That can’t be legal.  That’s not providing a good home, that’s presiding over a prison, an extension of the mental health system right in your ‘home’, they say they have no obligation to get involved, but they get involved, over my head and without telling me, when they want me put away.  It’s actually in my psychiatric notes that, following the accusations from the workmen, I was put in hospital so they would have space to do their work.

That’s another thing, for years I was asking for my notes and being promised them, and I seem to remember but am not sure that some of those promises were made at the prompting of a solicitor.  Repeatedly promised but never given.  All the right forms filled and submitted, no response.  How many years did it take before I got them, I can’t remember.  Maybe enough time for them to be able to try and kid me that it was ‘a long time ago’ and the matter is closed.  Presiding psychiatrist one Doctor Gallo, who on transfering me at my request to another psychiatrist described me as ‘this very difficult patient’.  Dr Gallo, ‘yes, we’ll give them to you, yes, we’ll give them to you’ and no matter how many times I asked and made fresh applications, I never got them.  Why it was suddenly so easy when I asked for them again in the middle of last year, I have no idea.  Dr Gallo, psychiatrist thug from the Ladywell Unit, Lewisham Hospital.  It’s funny, one of Colin Dye’s platform team looks just like him.

So back to what I wanted to say.  I need to make some practical decisions.  I want to move, here in Bulgaria.  But if I do, whether I rent or buy, I’m not sure, I have been given no legal assurance, that if I take something on I will be free to fulfil the contract or to make the necessary repayments.  I can’t believe they would do this, but there is a possibility that someone would want to imprison me or otherwise detain me, and I would end up defaulting on a financial commitment.  So I don’t feel free to make one.  But I also don’t feel safe to go home, given that requested information is being withheld and I am being spoken to and neglected in such ways by my housing association, the police, my MP, solicitors won’t get involved, and in spite of emails sent to the mental health team, one of them asking my present psychiatrist to respond, I have heard nothing.  Nothing, nada, zilch.  They must know what that is doing to me and I’m wondering what they are trying to do to me.  Yes, do to me.  I was going to say achieve, but that would have been just trying to avoid the appearance of what they like to call ‘paranoid ideation’.  If I’ve sent them emails and asked for a response, I should get one.  And I mean a response, not an excuse for an assessment and a decision that it is time to move in.


Here Goes Nothing

Telly Watching.

David Edes is, to me, apart from seeming like a very nice person, a combination of two people.  He looks like, exactly like, a mental health solicitor I had (he actually got my last section rescinded, for which I am obviously grateful) who, when I said I did things on the internet, asked me how I had access to it, and I told him I had a computer at home, and he said either, ‘YOU’VE got a computer?’ or ‘What are YOU doing with a computer?’, but it meant the same thing, and I was so shocked I couldn’t express how angry and appalled I felt.  It appeared that his assumption was that I shouldn’t have one. 

David Edes’ name is, apart from the final ‘s’, the same as a mental health solicitor I approached in Greenwich when I was taken into hospital under a section (it might have been the same one the other solicitor got rescinded).  I phoned him from the hospital ward and, knowing that I had not been satisfied with the way I had been treated by the other company, asked him if we could have an initial conversation, following which I would decide if I wanted him to handle my situation.  He said he wasn’t prepared to approach it that way, that he didn’t have time, or something like that, and I think I said something about didn’t I have a right to an initial conversation based on which I could make my decision, and he said look, I don’t think I want to handle it anyway, and I just thought that was so discriminatory.  While I know that David Edes on BBC World News is neither of these people, because of the resemblance, which in the context of all the other resemblances etc is obviously deliberate, I can’t help reacting to him as if he was.  I’m sorry for David, if he knows nothing about this.  He seems to be genuinely nice.  But so did these people.  maybe they didn’t expect someone on benefits on a section in hospital to have enough about them to at least try to insist on their rights. Maybe they didn’t see me as having those rights, because I was on benefits.  The right I wanted, in the second situation, was the right to see if I had enough confidence in my relationship with a prospective solicitor handling my tribunal, and other associated matters.  But for the associated matters you have to look elsewhere anyway.  The ones I have spoken to have said they can only handle the tribunal, not question the diagnosis itself.  I’ve had so many solicitors refuse to get involved I’ve given up trying.

More later.  I’ll edit this later and add more.  I want to go out though, so I’m going to, and stop desperately and hysterically hanging on to my computer and what I can do with it, which does not reliably feel like much at the moment as it keeps crashing.

Coded Communication

The reason I disagree with this, from people with power and authority towards people who have been through the mental health system, is that my experience of the mental health system is that they insist it doesn’t happen, and if you say it does it is evidence of mental illness.

My experience of the people who use this form of communication is that they do so in order to be able to insist that you respond on their terms and they get involved on their own terms, otherwise they won’t even acknowledge the communication.  They will stand by and look on silently and impassively as they order you to be taken away.

Their assumed right to do this also assumes that they know everything they need to know to make a decision about a person.  Erm . . . that would make them God, then?

I’m in a dilemma over this.  I’m sure that most of them believe that what they are doing is right.  But I would like to e able to say that the reason I feel so strongly against it is that I have fallen prey of evil people who have perverted its use, but those people would not accept that description and assessment of themselves, and neither would most ‘decent, upstanding people’ accept it of them.

I do feel love, I do feel loyalty, I believe very much in obedience to authority.  I think I do, anyway.  So when I don’t respond to this, I believe it says something bad about me, and I think that is how they see it too.

Am I a person being abused, or am I just a rebel who needs to learn to respect those in authority? If I go to the people I rebel against in tears, will they heal me?  I certainly seem to be making life very hard for myself.  That is the position they take.

The problem is, for me and other survivors of the mental health system, the government validates and upholds the system which says believing we are being communicated with in this way is evidence of mental illness.

So what is the definition of mental illness? Is it, for someone like me, that I want to do what I want to do on my own terms, not on the terms of those who use their form of communication to be able to opt out of committment to a response from the person which is other than they want?  To me, it looks that way.

I thought that living in a democracy meant you could do anything you want to, within the law, on your own terms unless, discounting assault, someone with authority stops you with good reason and in an acceptable way, which, to me in a situation like this, would be with the personal commitment of being explicit about what you are saying, about who you are saying it to, and about what you want, so that everyone watching and listening, including the person themselves, knows what you have said and who you have said it to.

I feel I could just go walking up to these people, at the moment, and find myself embraced and accepted.  That makes me feel that I should drop my insistence that people in authority should not communicate with those without power and authority in code, whatever the communication.  I think they would say it is about testing the heart.  When I started writing this I was ready to maintain that it is an attempt to control a person inappropriately rather than to control a situation and recognise the person’s rights to their own terms of action and understanding. I wonder what kind of Britain it is that would be put at risk by recognising these rights and not acting against them.

I believe that no one in authority who upholds the mental health system has a right to use this form of communication with someone who knows that if there response is considered unacceptable they could well end up back in hospital.  I also wish to maintain that they have no right to take an individual out of that group and try and make them feel secure enough to leave the others behind. if they can do it for one, they can do it for all.  I believe the way to do that for this kind of situation is to make it clear that the mental health practitioners are wrong in their assertions and actions towards people who believe they are being communicated with using any kind of code.

Coded communication I am aware of and that I know others are aware of embraces things like parable, metaphor, storytelling, drama – seeds planted that go for the heart and conscience and which bypass the process of logic.  I heard on Premier Radio that it was C S Lewis who said that was the function of his stories, and Premier Radio accepted the validity and desirability of that without question.

My own life experience, and that of many others, I have to assume,  is that that is not something we have been brought up with with any awareness or security or understanding. That being the case, it is wrong to invalidate us and superimpose it on us at will.

I think that, in most situations, employing means to move the will through the heart bypassing the mind is assuming far too much power.  It assumes too much personal purity and knowledge.

I’m Sue Barnett.  I’m trying to survive the mental health system threat, and until people insisted on knowing everything about me, I was a survivor of sexual and other forms of abuse.  I was satisfied that, as a Christian, the new had come and the old had gone, and that there were some things I didn’t need to talk about.   Because other people were not, and were not prepared to say that to me or to tell me what it was they were concerned about, I have been made a victim of the mental health system and of everyone who is happy to have that fear as a form of control over me because it makes their job easier.  I have been made a victim by people in authority who have used this extreme form of force and invalidation to compensate for their own cowardice, anger and unwillingness to be open without taking control.

The truth is, however I feel, the life I could have known will now never exist.  For them, knowing that I have been a victim of sexual abuse makes them believe they need to take another look and try to restore the relationship, maybe try to help me and so expiate their guilty feelings.  Some want to work even harder to cover what they have done, and so present as believing they need to be even more insistent on the form of communication they are using which will not cover the person who responds to it in the eyes of the mental health system, if the communicators don’t find the response acceptable.  They can invest it with whatever tone or expression of love, authority, disapproval, anger, cajoling, humour, twitting, triumph, positive disengagement they want to, the form of communication is still as compromising to its recipient.

If they want me to go home, the right way to communicate that is to tell me so openly and formally, either giving reasons or saying that they can’t, and to tell me what kind of provision will be made for me if I do what they ask me and what else they want to happen and don’t want to happen, in terms of – well, not knowing whether or not they want to arrest me is one of my greatest anxieties.  Will anyone meet me at the airport and, if so, who and for what purpose?  How will I know them, and that they are who they say they are and want what they say they want?

With good reason I am afraid of force and of violence and of being taken into any kind of detention when no one has told me to expect it.  Making people live with that has to be wrong, in most cases, if not all.  They tell us that if we treat them with respect we will be respected.  Hm. A very easy equation to make, and also one which they don’t impose that often on themselves in any kind of requirement to be the first to show respect in a relationship which has broken down.

Christmas is here.  I feel as if I have deprived myself.  But I believe that other people have been watching my actions with cynicism they have attributed to me.  They seem to think I have done some hard and necessary things just because it is Christmas and I want to have a good one, so they are treating my actions and communications with cynicism and not even acknowledging them.  To me, that makes them the problem, because I don’t work that way.  I would not seek resolution of serious issues involving other people with an eye to having it out of the way by Christmas.  I recently contacted the police complaints department for an update on a complaint they have allowed to lapse for several months without communication.  That was a week ago.  In spite of the seriousness and distressing nature of what is involved, I have still received no reply, and I really believe, given the way they have handled all other communication I have made on this matter, that they have decided I can wait until after Christmas because if I thought I should be able to get it out of the way before then they are going to teach me I can’t do things at my own convenience.  I didn’t even think of Christmas.  I did what I knew I had to do at the time.  If this is the approach they are taking towards me, it is their cynicism, not mine, and is completely contemptuous.  There might be another reason but, if there is, they are not exactly showing any human concern.  I haven’t even had an acknowledgement of the email I sent them, let alone an update.  This must be wrong, especially when I first started trying to deal with it back in March 2009 and they have failed to deliver in terms of the way they said they were going to handle it, even after many attempts to get a clarification.  I’m wondering why I am being held hostage in this way and why I, as the person who made the report and has later complained about the way it has been handled from start to finish in the way they have treated me, am being made to feel as if I don’t matter.  It appears to me that they MUST be trying to hide something.  If they are waiting for me to be prepared to deal with it in the way they think I should be, that is awfully patronising and shows incompetence rather than anything else.  I’ve made the report.  I’ve made the complaint.  I am being ignored on one hand and being put under pressure on the other while they wait for – what?  Perfection in the way I go about things and the way I express my feelings over the situation before they will allow any resolution or progress or closure?  These people, whose officers have been exposed for rape and other misdemeanours?  They think they have a right to hold me, someone who went to them voluntarily, hostage?

You daren’t say too much against these people.  They have ways of making you pay.  Violence, neglect, incarceration under the mental health act, leaving you to deal with abuse and vigilantism in the neighbourhood.  Would they take out a contract on my life?  Would they physically have me killed?  I really don’t know.

Edit note: 11.36 am Bulgarian time:

This post didn’t appear under it’s assigned categories and tags for several minutes.  I thought it wasn’t going to, so I contacted WordPress to ask why.

When I finished (perhaps this is what is commonly called ‘paranoia’, but I don’t think so, though I am in the city centre, more or less), a police car came past with its siren wailing.  It stopped and started and stopped and started, sort, long, it felt deliberately timed and mocking, angry, harassing and threatening.

Now I’m angry.  MY anger is not acceptable, so I am also afraid.  In the light of everything that has happened this year – should I just laugh at myself and stop being so precious and pretentious?  It looks as if I am being targeted for deliberate harassment.  If the action is deliberate, harassment might not be their motivation, it is just the quickest interpretation people arrive at. But whatever the motivation, if it IS deliberate, it is experienced as harassment and contempt and provocation, and knowing that might be what they want, I am angry, and sick with fear because of that possibility.  Because when that happens, it is normal, and right, to want to confront the human beings responsible.  But if I did I would come off worst.  That is how people become mentally ill.  Not being allowed to confront what is wrong with what is right, and having to pretend compliance where it is absolutely wrong, in the face of authorities and powerful organisations and individuals who pretend they are not doing what they most obviously and certainly seem to be doing.  I’m afraid, because they might be using this kind of activity towards me to get me to reveal my identity and whereabouts.  Even though my landlord, I think, has to give them that information anyway.  I’m afraid because, when I think I am wrong, I feel it deeply, and they make me feel that way all the time.  I’m afraid because my normal mode is love and respect, and they seem to enjoy invalidating that, or misappropriating it.  I feel stupid.  I think that is what they want me to feel.  Back off and watch a woman being abused and wait until she cries for help, realising how right they really are and acknowledging how wrong she really is.

Um . . .

I eventually got round to having a bowl of porridge today, around 3pm. It was the first food I had eaten since Sunday. I’ve not had a decent cup of tea or coffee in that time either, I ran out of soya milk.

I discovered that my ‘nice little stop gap shop’, as I thought it was, is not far away from where I am staying at the moment. They sell soya milk in there. I got there 5 or 10 minutes before they close.

The first thing that happened was the older woman who was there looked disparagingly at my clothes as soon as I walked in, so I gave her a big grin and said hello as if she was a dear friend I hadn’t expected to see. I’d never seen her before. I’ve never been in that late.  She said something rather loudly that sounded like ‘celebrity’.

Anyway, there was a little man in a black leather jacket who started coming on heavy around me. That put my back up. I told him I was looking for soya milk, which they normally have, and he kept saying ‘no’, as if I was stupid even to ask for it. He didn’t even seem to know where to look.

So there he was, giving me the verbal, so I gave it back. Next thing I knew he was grabbing hold of me, and I told him not to and said he was breaking the law. I said I’d call the police. Yeah, right, like they care! If I thought they cared I wouldn’t need to fight a losing battle so hard for myself.

Anyway, he grabbed me again and started dragging me and shouting, so as much as I was desperate for what I had bought, and just as desperate for what I hadn’t been able to, I said, ‘right, OK, I won’t have ANY of it’, and dropped it on the floor. He got worse, I think he hit me, so I hit him back. Nothing heavy, just beating with the side of my fist, I’m not strong enough to do harm and didn’t intend to anyway.  I was just trying to make a point I hoped he would respect and stop what he was doing.

Next thing I know, he’s let himself drop to the floor, and then the old woman started hitting me, and he got up and joined in, and I think there was someone else, another man, joining in as well, and then I was really frightened, because they didn’t seem as if they were going to stop. The young woman who serves there stood outside the door looking alarmed, and I looked at her and saw she wanted it to stop, and said to them, ‘oh no, please let me go’. I didn’t know how far they would go. I wish I wasn’t writing this, I need some support for my tears, and I have none, either here where I am or anywhere, with anyone reading. Real support manifests in action that makes an appropriate difference.

Anyway, he grabbed hold of me again and threw me out of the door, and I was frightened I might end up hurt on the floor. Then I looked back and they were all laughing, and he was making sexual gestures with his fist and saying go fuck yourself. I came to this country with an open heart. Me. I’ve stayed here, in both hope and fear. Is this too melodramatic? Probably. I run with my tears, I believe my tears and my pain, instead of turning it to humour. I imagine people saying, ‘no, it’s OK, it’s not melodramatic, pain and tears are OK’, and wish I was with them to receive the imagined support instead of typing on my keyboard.

They were just there, laughing, when I said it was criminal and I would call the police. I’ve no idea why they were laughing. And he was coming on with the violent sexual gestures and talk. There was a locked door between us. I wanted to fall on them and say, ‘oh no, please don’t do that’. Almost a feeling of ‘please, what’s the matter? Why are you acting like that towards me?’ Everything I said to try and recover myself and some sort of control and communicate to them how bad what they had just done was, they stood there laughing, and it looked so pleasant in itself, it has left me feeling that I want to go back and apologise and ask THEM to forgive ME. Every time your vocal tone breaks through to freedom, they ride hard on the top of it with speech of their own. And I think they seem like such wonderful people, it makes it feel like a good thing and not a bad one, and something I should just accept as the way they do things at this point in their development and maybe always will. And that it isn’t bad, it just isn’t liberal. What’s so great about liberal? Not every country operates liberally, and some of them that don’t seem to be better ruled than we are.

People say Bulgarians are so helpful. That’s not what I saw tonight, and on many similar occasions people just turn away. They refuse to acknowledge anything bad in their own actions. Ever. I’m not England’s rich, I’m England’s poor, the poorest of. I came here hopeful, not avaricious. This is so cruel. It is, it REALLY is, so hateful – isn’t it?

What really got to me was that the woman started hitting me for hitting her husband, so I assumed, when he was being aggressive towards me both physically and verbally. Isn’t a woman allowed to have had enough of that and to stand up for herself in kind? Why would one woman turn on another woman who is hitting a man that has hit her? Especially here, where figures for abuse of women have been presented to me as being so high – 1 in 4, the last I read. I can’t think that she joined in out of fear, her smile and laughter straight afterwards seemed so natural and with such relish.

I just wanted a cup of tea and a slice of toast. That’s all I wanted. I’ve been avoiding going out all day because I thought I’d have to deal with taxi drivers. I didn’t know it was so close. I met the first girl I dealt with from Mirela when I was looking in Sofia for accommodation, she gave me directions. But at the end she gave me a look of open distaste. Maybe that’s why I’m not getting replies to my emails from Mirela.

I was raging through the street all the way home. A girl who had ignored me for 2 minutes as if she didn’t understand turned round and said to me, ‘don’t talk about my country like that’. Why not? I’m its victim got here under false pretences, it looks like.

In the covered arcade, just after I had passed him, a man in a uniform said excuse me. I said no. I thought he was just security and had no right to make me stop. I asked if he was police, he said yes, I didn’t believe him, said arrest me then, but you’re just security and you can’t arrest me because I’m not doing anything to your property. He followed me at a distance and silently in a way I felt intimidated by, then he disappeared for a while, but he reappeared as I got closer to home and managed to get conviction into my voice as I called them scum. As soon as strength, conviction and an end to my lack of self-control came into sight, there he was, still following at a distance. Do they hate me because they think I am rich and privileged? I’m not, though. How can people be so cruel as to be contemptuous towards people who have come to their country in hope and in peace? Not because they think they are owed anything.

The shop is just off Maria Luiza Boulevard, on a street on the right coming away from Vitosha Boulevard. The street is opposite a shopping centre with a clock tower, 2 streets before Tsar Simeon. The shop is on the right, past Costa Coffee on the left, past the mineral water outlets on the right, just across the road. It’s a shop with a green sign, on a corner, the name looks like Boehpe, or something similar. I used to like shopping there. I thought it was a nice little shop and a nice change from Billa. I thought as long as it was nearby I’d never have to go to Billa again.


Is this acceptable discipline from a man to a woman in Bulgaria? Is this the right way to treat a woman who obviously is a bit above her station, and has no other man to take her in hand? Is this the right way to treat hypocrisy and refusal to trust and give the love and respect you feel, even in spite of yourself? Is it? I don’t know, but to me it feels right. Will someone with the power to make a difference please stand up and tell me it is wrong, if it is? Because if you allow it without positive action, you might as well say it is right. That’s the message people know I’m getting from you, in everything but words.  I’m saying this to my country’s government.

My landlord came to the house with a police car once, to demand his rent.  I’m not sure, I think I heard something just like it outside where I’m staying.  It blares a bit like a fog horn.  That was in a little village street, the same noise.  From a landlord who already seemed to be telling me he didn’t want me there anyway.

I hope this time it wasn’t connected with me.

When I started writing this and saying today, it was still Tuesday.  Midnight passed here just before I posted.


First published 9th December 2010, after a post on veganism.

Edit:  This is a Sticky Post – Stuck to the front page for future reference.  It didn’t appear in any of the tag categories I selected, I assume because it has too many tags, although plenty of others that HAVE appeared have more than the 10 suggested in WordPress Help.

I brainstormed on the tags.  One reason I have stuck this on the front page, so you can search the categories any time, and so can I.  And what I say in this is relevant much of the time.   If you look at my tags in this you get an idea of how I think and feel about what is happening and how I think it should be perceived, understood and treated.

Spread the word, please, if you are with me.  Maybe if I break up the tags into easier to handle chunks I can get the post into all the categories I want, if I reproduce it or something.

Just listen to the sickly sweetness on Premier right now.  You have an hour.  I wouldn’t mind if it wasn’t criminally fuelled sarcasm, teasing and stalking.  They are not sincere people, even if they sound it.

Listen, you will hear them using my blog.  Even this.

They are taunting people, maybe me, with ‘Ah, you think YOU are always right, do you?’ But whether I am or not, I’m not using criminal means to enforce my opinion.  They are.  These Christians.  If you can’t win and you want to cry, mock and laugh, they say.  These carers for souls and God’s vision for humanity as a whole.  Unfit for purpose.

What’s it like, playing God? Esther says.  You’re asking the wrong person, Esther.  I wouldn’t know.  You would though, if you think He authorises the use of criminality and everything else in my tags to destroy a person.  Croaking and squeaking, most of it is deliberate and to hurt and offend FOR NO GOOD REASON EXCEPT TO WIN FOR YOUR ORGANISATION and you have no right to my sympathy.  I am not you, I am weak, you are abusing your position.

And you keep teasing, making out you’re going to comment or pass an opinion on what I say, but talk about something else.  I can hear the mockery in your voices, past experience of you all helps.

I love it when John Pantry gets hsi knickers in a twist about something being blatant.  If he’s talking about me, he’s projecting.  he is seeing things that were not intended at the time of writing, but I am awfully glad they are there.  But they weren’t intentional, so it is all, for him, a product of his mind, guilty and sneaky as it is.

Thank you for seeming sweet, guys, even if you are not.  We all need our illusions, especially at this time in the morning.  Pity mine don’t hold.

Got it – they are taking the message to their own consciences and forcing them outwards. That’s what this kind of Christianity does, all the time.  Look at the blogs, see how often they talk about they rather than I or we.  They think it is a sign of good authority to stand out in the street complaining loudly or pointing the finger, literally, in someone else’s face, a member of their congregation.  I’ve seen and heard it all, and deliberately recoil from and distance myself from it.  Buzz, buzz.

I’m being censored.  This doesn’t appear in any of my tag categories, 50 minutes on, and the Premier news just had something said with firm sternness about needing medical help.  It’s not new.  Maybe that is why Premier felt able to mock so freely and why it was so effective.  They caught me on my blind side.  I assumed it was going out and being shown in the categories.

Rick Easter, I have no responsibility.  I’ve already tried to meet it many times over, and you continue to taunt and terrorise based on the consequences.  You are angry, degrading people.


People are touch starved.  I am.

In schools teachers are being given more disciplinary powers.  I wonder if they are also going to have restored to them the right to casual, affirming touch and hugging?

It isn’t only the teacher’s right, it’s the child’s right as well, to touch and be touched positively.

Relationships with significant others where hugging and affirming touch are restricted are subhuman.  Everyone needs it, especially with significant others.  It is normal and natural.  Withholding it is not.

I believe it would resolve many discipline problems, because freedom to love and be loved makes people more secure.

As a society, we go immediately to coercive touch because we dare not or will not practise positive touch.

We are drunk and giddy on goodness knows what and some of us have been beaten senseless by the refusal to love in the most obviously normal and natural ways.

49 Or 50?

49 or 50?

(Or, as I heard a politician say today, neither fish nor foul!)

50 IS a special age.  If they say it isn’t, they’re lying.

I just thought I’d get this in now to be awkward – here in Bulgaria I am 50 years and 1 and a 1/2 hours old.  In the UK I am still 49.  Which counts and why?

When I realised I was 50, I smiled.  It was automatic.

Then I looked at where I am and felt suicidal (I’m not exaggerating).

I don’t know why or if I’m right (I’m probably not), but I believe 50 is God’s age.  That is, a special age to God.  It’s God’s reaching of majority.  5 is, my tradition tells me, the number of grace.

Whatever anyone might pray for me or try to bless me with in the future, no one can ever give me back the attaining of my 50th birthday.  That has gone.  Reconcile that for me someone, please.

I feel embarrassed making a big thing of this, because now I’m actually writing it doesn’t seem that important.  I also feel as if it is an insult to God to be so faithless for the future.

But I still felt that way, and it still is a big thing.

Check out WordPress’s Freshly Pressed.  Awesome.

PS Premier likes playing a song which I believe they are at least in part directing at me, and it’s a big part.  I can’t remember all the words I want, but it goes something like:

“I have come . . . down the road of my own mistakes . . . wasted years” etc.

For balance, I have to recognise that I am not their only intended audience, or at least I shouldn’t be.  They also play songs rejoicing and triumphing over enemies.

They say it is always your choice, and the bottom line is, that is true.  Sometimes the choice can cost you your life, and the church won’t be on your side.

It seems to me though to be a rather polarised approach to the human condition, including our spiritual condition. Blaming yourself for everything is no less the blame game than blaming other people.

I don’t know any more of this girl’s songs, but I hope that isn’t her settled position towards herself.  The Bible doesn’t mind saying that sometimes other people are to blame.

And the ‘blame game’ (I got that from Anne Coles).  Is it REALLY a game?  Isn’t it a necessary part of owning responsibility.

Blame isn’t a game, it really exists and needs to be dealt with in all healthy and growing relationships.  It is, or at least can be, a heartbreaking experience.  But surely nothing is more deadening to the soul and spirit than to live in a fuzzy, wooey, vibrating mulch where no one is allowed to recognise that blame exists, and also that it might not belong to them?

You can’t just say, ‘let’s not talk about it, let’s not play that game, let’s go and watch a film/go to a restaurant/go out witnessing.

Fuck me, you bloody can’t! (trans. I feel strongly about this and want to cry).

Violence and Aggression Towards Women

Something has sparked this post, but I won’t say what.

If a woman who has been harshly treated says she hates those who have treated her that way, especially if it is a government agency, the expression of hatred shouldn’t be seen as an excuse for further aggression and control or an indication that she might be violent.  Nor should it make members of the agency afraid, rather it should make them more sensitive.  Sometimes hatred is a valid feeling, and the only way to begin to help the situation is to say that it exists.

That isn’t amoral, modern day liberalism (and not all liberalism is amoral, and liberalism isn’t bad, any more than conservatism.  It depends what you are being liberal or conservative about).

The Bible says that flattery is bad, and that he who hides his hatred has lying lips.

If the mistreatment continues, it is totally inappropriate to turn to the person and say, ‘you shouldn’t be so open about opposing them, then’.  If a person’s feeling is valid, you should be corrected by it, not threatened.

Every job involves relationships.  All relationships are to be handled with care and respect.


They pipe English language pop music in Billa.  When I first started going one I kept hearing was something along the lines of ‘she hides a guilty secret inside’.  I thought at the time it might just be general mysogyny, but yesterday when I went in they were playing Amy Winehouse’s Rehab, following my post 2 days ago with Jools Holland in the title.  Then (horror) it was followed by a song which started like a modern worship song with the sustained hum, and talked about damage she had done which she couldn’t undo.  I feel like scum for resisting this.

But it isn’t me that needs to change on this.  However accustomed I might feel able to become to it, it is still harassment.  The body language of the staff is holding and controlling, and when I start to walk away they go into a little flutter of what looks like consternation.  A general supermarket surely isn’t supposed to be an organ knowingly used for religious reasons?  But it’s more than that, it is specifically designed narrowcasting at me.  It does sound ridiculous doesn’t it?  I agree.

I’m sorry, I don’t get it.  But it’s playing havoc with my own ability to cope and to communicate and be open.

I can’t understand why, if there is an issue, the appropriate authorities can’t approach me and talk about it.  I feel like a dog they are nervous about, being approached with caution with the back of their hand held out for me to sniff, and it’s crazy.  It’s really, really crazy.  And completely inappropriate.

And they stand bolt upright, shoot their hands out when it comes to money, slam things down on the tables.  It leaves me reeling.  And it appears that the worse the state it gets me in, the more they believe they have a right to judge me and misbehave.  Because in England that’s what it would be.  Misbehaviour.

The Estate Agents’ website I’ve been looking at gives me the impression that British people are selling their properties in droves at low prices.  Maybe this is par for the course.  They’re driving us away.  I don’t know if it’s intentional or not.  Is it arrogant of me to assume that the reason they have tried to attract us is that they want our revenue?  In that case, they need to drop their corruption and the resulting cowardice and accept us as we are, not bombard us with distressing behaviour, whether actively or passively.

My First Time In a Mental Hospital

I watched TV a lot, because I seemed to be being bombarded with images of people in my life, or at least within my orbit.  It might be more accurate to say that I was within their orbit.

During my first few days I saw a lookalike of Gerald Coates in Parliament on a news programme.  I said so out loud and one of the nurses said, ‘we’ve got to put a stop to this’ – meaning me, not what was on the telly!  Later I saw David Shuchman, a reporter on the news, name sounds like David Shearman, pastor of the church where I spent my teens and who is involved with parliament.  I was particularly disturbed by his name because I heard it as ‘shoeman’, because David had wanted me to take my shoes off once during a service.  It wasn’t a direct request or command, but something he said which seemed to be general from the platform.  I didn’t do it, I didn’t want to.  It somehow felt like an illicit shortcut in dealing with relationship issues.

What really freaked me one night was a film I saw, with Susan Sarandon, about a couple and a child, I think.  One of the people in it had skin identical to Colin Dye’s, I had seen that in the trailer, and it immediately had my attention.  I watched it from the beginning.  It was a pastiche of what was happening with me and the church.  There were church scenes in it, the first one I remember had a stern header over the church, something along the lines of ‘do what’s right because it’s right’.  The other I remember was at the end, where this woman, who seemed to be me, came into the church dishevelled and on her knees seeking forgiveness.  It was appalling.  Shortly before that there had been a golfing scene between people who seemed to represent John Coles (big golfer) and Colin Dye, and they were saying they seemed to have the same woman in common, the woman who seemed to represent me.  I was at that time visiting several churches, these were two of them.

Right at the beginning of the film there was a big car crash scene involving the person who looked like Colin Dye.  I had been watching intently up to that point, but when I saw that I left the room distraught and in tears, wondering what they were doing to him.  I suppose he would say my concern was misplaced and inappropriate.  A nurse came out to me and asked me what was the matter, and I told her, and she said ‘it’s only a film’.  I knew there was more to it than that, but I didn’t know how it was working, I thought it was something psychic, and I was frightened and broken down, and angry as well.  This was the first time I had encountered anything like this, to my knowledge.  There has been plenty more since.

Why don’t people listen when you say what is happening, instead of dismissing it, sometimes as mental illness, just because THEY don’t understand it and have no frame of reference for dealing with it?

So anyway, that was the TV side of things.  Apart from that, I wasn’t allowed of the ward for ages, it might have been weeks, not even escorted, and I spent 11 days without a toothbrush or toothpaste, even though I had asked for it.  Because of what I was seeing, including the fact that the wards had Biblical names, I thought I was with church people and this was somehow part of leadership training, preparation and selection, and that the delay in receiving toothpaste and a toothbrush was one among many deliberate tests I had to pass, and that this was a deliberate test of my patience and my willingness to wait in trust.  For the same reason, when I was asked if I wanted to appeal my section and told that I had a right to a solicitor, I said that I trusted the hospital staff and the people in church who had decided I should be there, and I didn’t want to appeal.  I was taken off my section, but I had nowhere to go for home, and an ex-army bully, Nick Caswell, said, ‘but you will be straight back on it if you don’t take your medication’.  I didn’t believe that was saying I would become ill again if I didn’t take the medication, but a threat of what would happen if I didn’t conform to the regime while I was in hospital.  His subsequent behaviour towards me bears this out.  He once bent my hand forward so hard and so far that it continues to hurt for 6 months afterards.  I told him at the time he was hurting me, and he said, ‘you’ll learn your lesson then, won’t you?’

One of the things that bothers me about the way this is being handled with the people I choose to communicate with is that, whatever I say, they react to it as if it is the first time they have heard it.  But now I know they knew a lot before, even before I told them.  Quite how much I don’t know.  That hurts.  I trusted them, but it seems they secured a lot of that trust by deceit.

I feel guilt towards people, and I don’t even know if it is appropriate.  I wish I had trusted Tommy more.  But I’m confused about that as well.  But I just feel as if his presence is always with me, waiting for me to turn.  It is solidly behind me.  Yet he’s not there.  Is it just a dramatic persona he projects, or is he really there for me?  Given a choice, I’d far rather be romanced than threatened.  That has been most other people’s approach – police, politicians, housing, psychiatric staff.  Church.  Tommy is a man I wish I could have a relationship with (pick up your mental eraser and scrub out ‘sexual’ from your mind, you horrible slime, any official thinking that!).

I’m tired and overwrought.  It’s been a bad month.  I tried to leave Bulgaria twice, to pick up some clothes and come back, but both times I was arrested and not allowed to fly.  And everyone at home who has been involved so far, largely without my permission, knew all about that before I even said anything about it to anyone.  The only people who knew were airport staff and police, someone at the home office (or foreign office) who was called by the police and spoke to me on the phone while I was with the police the first day, and staff of the British Embassy.  I don’t know which of them told church people, or how media people seemed to be running with it.  I didn’t break silence for a week, and I only did so because of threatening noises that I was going to be taken out of the situation on mental health grounds, which I interpreted to mean I was going to be taken out under a section and put in hospital when I got home, which is how conflict has always been handled in the past.  I broke silence and gave my version of events because I was terrorised, by remarks coming from the House of Commons (no, not in my head, bozo, I watch it on the internet!).  I spent £1,000 trying to get back.  Credit card money.  I can’t afford to risk more without an assurance from the people issuing cute or desperate calls that this time I am going to be unhindered in my efforts.  I’m on benefits.  I can’t afford it, financialy or emotionally.

All the stuff about fatwas, etc.  Is that just more lies to sabotage my attempts to move forward with my life in peace?  I think it probably is, you know.  These people know how to manipulate my self-righteousness and self-pity.  I am so miserable.  I’ve stayed in the house for over 3 weeks now, for fear of what might happen if I go out, partly, and also because I can’t deal with my embarrassment at how stupid I’ve been believing this while I am seeing images of people in my vilage on television.  If they can see them, they can see me, and I feel crippled by self-consciousness.  How have they got their images?  Have people come forward voluntarily in response to the garbage put out by the media, or are they getting them some other way?  I had great hopes for Bulgaria.  I can’t find a way to recover the joy.  I feel there will always be a shadow over me here.  We are told that Bulgarian people welcome other cultures.  My neighbours welcomed me.  I’ve never had such kind neighbours.  But I’m not sure what they were expecting.  I’m not convinced, entirely, that I’m dealing with a general anti-British nationalism.  What if I’M the one that’s prejudiced?  These media people, they say ‘torture is not culture’, but what have THEY been doing or allowing to be done to me for years?  Hmm? (warding off an effing and blinding attack).  Dem people, dey hypocrites, or dey conveniently forget.  God bless America (sorry, forgot, I’m English!)

That’s another thing (my posts always leave the original topic).  What does my friend, and Prime Minister, David Cameron, think he is doing posturing my homeland as a junior partner in a relationship with another country?  how DARE he?  In what sense are we junior?  Fighting terrorism, because 9/11 was an event in America?  We are independent (every time I get a run on thinking the kids screech.  I’m so raw and terrified, it’s making me feverish and tearful.  I can’t follow through, I can’t get to the end of my thoughts.  For fuck’s sake, it’s theft.  Anywhere I go now as a result of someone else’s input will not be where I was originally going to go, and where I would have gone without the interference would, at the very least, have been right and better for me, if not everyone else.  I feel bad.  I feel as if I am resisting their attempts to love and embrace me.  But we have no common language yet.  I love hearing their voices.  I feel as if I am in a bad place without them.  But I also need space and privacy to do my own thing?  Problem – I don’t believe myself.  Is this insistence of mine on preserving my own space just a perpetuation of the abnormal and dysfunctional approach which has been taken towards ME for years? The longer I wait, the more sick and frightening the sounds become.  It renders me inarticulate.  That seems to be what everybody always wants.  Articulate OK, as long as you say what we want you to say, when we want you to say it.  Whatever you say beyond the questions and concerns WE have doesn’t matter.  I want to hit these kids, they are really pushing it.  Why don’t their parents do something?  Don’t they realise how cruel and thoughtless it is to do this to someone who doesn’t even speak their language?  Do they think I don’t have a life in here?  They are banging the bins now.  I feel inadequate.  I’m failing.  It’s MY fault.  I’m sick in my stomach.  I’m full of tears.  My throat feels strange.  I can’t release it.  Their insolent, angry, demanding faces.  Little changelings.  Sometimes I think it is people in Bulgarian media putting them up to it or provoking them to it.  I suppose Bulgaria is also hacking my computer.  I’ve seen this before, and I’ve watched videos years later where it seemed that was what was happening.  With all the stuff being said about Russia and everything, I’m really frightened.  I think Bulgaria won’t let me leave.  I am not a performing animal.  I’m not a hamster, to be woken up and got out to play with at someone else’s whim.  And it isn’t only my own conscience which is making me so crushed.  Is this what they think of as love and normal community living?  Am I the one out of step?  It feels like it.  It feels like it because the media likes to present it that way.  These kids are giddy and out of control.   I can’t be expected to deal with it, I’m traumatised and I don’t have the language.  Someone is whipping them up.  If someone can stop my tears and return me to joy, that will be quite a feat.  I invite you to try, if you think you are capable or have the right.  If kids are going to interfere with people like this, they need their bottoms smacked.  They obviously don’t respect anything else.  In fact, they play on the fact that that isn’t going to happen, and allowing that kind of disrespect towards adults is not acceptable, especially not towards adults they have no right to be targeting with their boundary testing.  As an idealist I think communities should be run around childen, but sometimes you have to do other things.  There has to be a place, doesn’t there, for saying ‘enough is enough’, and have it respected just because you say so?  You can’t always talk about winning or forfeiting the right, because some people don’t WANT you to win the right or regain it if you ‘forfeit’ it.  Children are NOT little innocents, and however that has come about, you can’t deal with things by assuming that they are and have a right to be, always.  Aren’t I allowed my own time and space to renegotiate the relationship?  They seem to be trying to drag me out like the woman caught in adultery [whose side Jesus was on, by the way].  First they utter a war cry, then they bang something, then they make a hard, vomiting sound from their throats.  Who is teaching them to handle themselves in this way?).   DISCLAIMER:  MY FEELINGS AND EXPRESSED OPINIONS ABOUT KIDS MIGHT NOT BE RELIABLE TODAY, IN MY CURRENT EMOTIONAL STATE.  BUT SAYING HOW YOU FEEL IS STILL THE BEST WAY TO DEAL WITH IT, IF PEOPLE ARE NOT BEATING ON YOU AT YOUR EVERY THOUGHT.  EXCEPT THERE ARE THINGS I DON’T SAY, ABOUT HOW WRONG I BELIEVE I AM, BECAUSE I AM NOT WITH THE PEOPLE I BELIEVE CAN HELP ME BE RIGHT.  My internet connection has ‘been down’ for the last 30 minutes or so.

Was it David or Solomon that said days would come when people would say, ‘if only I had accepted discipline?’  That is how I am feeling now.  I’m not sure where that fits in with the fact that I have been treated so inhumanly and torturously, and I’m not sure that David or Solomon was right in the first place to say such a thing in such an unqualified way.  Are we wrong to focus so much on human rights?  I’ve heard preachers say that people want rights without responsibilities.  I can see that is sometimes true, or at least appears to be (people say a lot of things in bravado or defiance of the truth they know because they daren’t reveal their heart).  But surely it has to be true that sometimes leaders say this kind of thing to avoid having to deal with issues in their handling of their authority.  I don’t feel I have any right to be saying this stuff.  I’m not a leader.  Who is going to help me if I alienate myself from my leaders?  But even the Bible says there were good kings and bad kings.  One of them refused the advice he was given not to lay a heavy burden on the people, and the people revolted.  It doesn’t say they were wrong.  In fact, according to the Bible, God never wanted them to have a king in the first place.  According to the Bible, God SAID that kings would rob people blind and make them slaves.  On that basis it seems to me that the embraced task of a Christian monarch should be to work actively towards dissolving the monarchy.  I’m not sure how much of that I said in the letter I never sent which I believe was illegally accessed on my computer, but David seems to be making a good job of appearing to have that kind of mission as his goal, at least in terms of government, if not of monarchy.  I still think they got it off my computer.  You can’t prove that kind of thing, though, without money, or unless people are willing to stand up and say (I’ve just realised I can’t spell it!) ‘mea culpa’.  That’s not going to happen, is it?

I’m listening to a recording of the end of Premier Breakfast.  What I’ve just heard might explain some of the violent emotions and phenomena.  If you believe in that sort of thing.  These people pipe so purely you think they don’t accept any of it, even though people into spiritual warfare and deliverance teach it.

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