Severe crippling anxiety has effected me for years. In order to combat it, I used to drink a ton or did drugs in the past. My anxiety has the capability of keeping me indoors for months on end. I remember quite a few anxiety attacks over the years. It’s so bad that I’ll have frequent meltdowns in the past.

The first time, I remember walking down to a store at age 14. I dropped to the ground and lost all sense of awareness. It was a beautiful day and for some reason, I collapsed on the ground. I don’t know why but I panicked. After five minutes on the ground, I ran home and lock myself in the bedroom for days. I’ve missed a ton of school because of anxiety.

The next bad anxiety attack, it started on a class field trip to NYC. I’ve been to NYC twice. The first time, I was able to cope. The second time, I stayed in the hotel room instead of going to a Broadway play. I got a hold of a bottle of alcohol and drunk it. I missed out on the play due to anxiety. I don’t know why but I stayed in the hotel room. That elevated when we traveled on a train next. I could remember crying on the train. I didn’t keep my eyes  open the entire ride to Philadelphia. I had hyperventilation and it plunged into a spiral after that.Once again, I stayed in the hotel room but it was bad. It felt like I was having a heart attack and my face went numb. I tried everything to combat it. I just wanted to go home. This was after I was raped at 16. That had a lot to do with it. I just remember the people in the hotel room not being sensitive to my needs. The classmates were rather rude. Nobody offered to stay so I stayed in the hotel room all night by myself.

This is why, I won’t ride a plane anymore. We left Philadelphia and I could remember it was right before a major snowstorm that was coming in. The year was 1998. I for whatever reason really panicked. It was embarrassing so the flight attendant moved me to the back seat of the plane. I couldn’t stop hyperventilating. My face and lips went numb. My head circled with needless and unnecessary fear. Thankfully the flight attendant was sweet enough to make sure I was okay. She gave me a cold compress and oxygen. Being on an airplane is confined spaces. I was raped in a confined space. I hate elevators. I don’t particularly care for them. Anything that I can’t be in control of, I will experience a nasty panic and anxiety attack. I never thought in a million years, I would ever become this way. Even in cars, I’ll hold on to the door. I hate interstates. The reason why, I used to watch the news all the time. It only escalated my fears. So in my mind, it escalated to almost being afraid of everything. I’m highly suspicious of people too.

The way to eliminate some of my triggers is by not watching the news. I can’t watch the news, read a newspaper, or anything that will stress me out. I won’t watch HLN, Fox News, CNN, or any of those shows. I can’t because it will elevate my fears. I have severe Generalized and Social Anxiety Disorders. They will lead into Agoraphobia for me. The longest time I stayed indoors was over a year. I became that afraid of the world.

So, I have banned all of that from my TV viewing pleasure. My anxiety has dropped astronomically. If I go out in public, I have a family member with me at all times. I can’t go by myself anywhere. I have this fear of getting into a severe car wreck and nobody will be able to identify my body. It may seem funny, but this is what I’m dealing with.

How did you go to NYC twice? A ton of luck. I don’t know how I survived those trips either. I even went to LA once. I had family members with me, when we traveled to LA. I probably won’t go back there anytime soon. The gunshots where we stayed at, did me in. Not to mention, I hate the time change. And I traveled to many different states. I don’t understand how my mind could do this to me. At times, I’ve become a prisoner from my own mind.

After the year of dealing with crippling Agoraphobia, I went outside for the first time in over a year. I clutched a family member tightly. It really felt like the world was closing in on me. We went to a grocery store and I could remember sobbing and begging my family member to take me home. I was 34 at the time. This wasn’t me as a child. This was me as an adult.

It angers me that people think people like me can just get over a rape. I should let it go. The guy who did it, committed suicide. I never had my justice. But I’ve become fucked up for life. That happened over 20 years ago and I still have nightmares today. As soon as I wake up, I run to the doors and make sure they are locked. I drank my pain away and did drugs to “get over” the rape. Instead, I escalated the issue into other problems. I became untrusting and bitter. I double-layered my clothes for the longest time as a protective shield. I didn’t want anyone to touch me. It took years of therapy just so a man could touch me. I didn’t trust anyone. It didn’t matter what sex you were. You’re a person with motives. I don’t know you and don’t want to know you. I kept that irrational thought for so many years.

When my husband got with me. I was still drinking. I even pointed out on the second date that I was mentally fucked up and he should run for the hills. He remained patient and loving. He showed me how a man was supposed to love a woman. My previous husband was bad for me. With additional therapy, my now-husband has helped me get to this point of security. I can trust another human being with my life. The problem was dealing with the PTSD. Every time I would make progress, something would trigger my PTSD. It could be a sound or a smell. And it sent me off the rails.

If someone screamed at me, that’s it.. they’re done for. I won’t talk to that person ever again. It doesn’t matter how much they apologize. Due to BPD, I can’t forgive them. I had a bad childhood filled with abuse. Screaming is something I can’t mentally handle. Lucky for me, my husband has never yelled at me. When he has a problem with me, he is able to word it in a way that won’t trigger my anger. Even if a doctor was lecturing me about something, I hear negative, negative, and more negatives. My husband will break through and explain it in a way that I can understand.

As a writer, it makes reading negative reviews a bad idea for someone who suffers from mental issues. My husband has banned me from reading them. What will happen is if I read a negative review, I would run into the kitchen searching for a knife. That is why he’s banned me from reading any reviews. If I’ve been awake for 24 hours, my husband will save my work and take my laptop away. Not to be mean but to protect me from myself. Not that I’m suicidal, I’m not. It makes it so challenging as a writer. Because you have to be able to keep a thick skin. But I love to write! I want to tell my stories. I’ve allowed my mental health to take control over my life. It makes me incredibly upset and angry that I’m unable to process negative reviews.

So, what do I do? I chose to listen to various actors. Charlie Hunnam, Alexander Skarsgard, Stellan Skarsgard, Bill Skarsgard, and various others have said repeatedly not to read the reviews. Some of them disabled social media to step away from reviews. Reading negative reviews really fucks with your head. Your confidence hits rock bottom. The problem is that someone with mental issues will do irrational and illogical things. Like delete all of their manuscripts or set their books on fire. I did that in the past. Now my husband carries a flash drive with him. He said to not market my books and to use Wattpad. I’ve done that. I’ve had to do that. I still want to get the story out but I don’t want to deal with Amazon again. I don’t want to deal with Smashwords either. I would give anything to put my books back on the shelf. But every time I prepare to put my books back on the shelf, anxiety strikes. Not the normal anxiety. This anxiety is the one where you throw up for days. I actually have a script of Phenergan for those moments. That’s to keep me from staying in the bathroom. I’m slowly coming out of my shell but it’s going to take time.

There is a contest for 10,000 to submit a manuscript. This is a sign-on bonus for Macmillan if they choose your manuscript. It has to be YA or NA. I am in the NA Fantasy category. My main characters start off as young teenagers. I have 21 days to submit my manuscript but that crippling anxiety may prevent me from submitting it. I can still keep it on Wattpad. I don’t think I’ll be self-publishing anytime soon. My family wants me to go for it. I honestly don’t know if I can. How can I meet people if I’m jumping at my own shadow?

I am slowly improving. I met some of my challenges and I need to slow down my talking. I talk a mile a minute, when I’m nervous. I was fortunate enough to meet Robert Kirkman. Everything I was going to say, flew out the window. And it wasn’t just because of Kirkman, I’m like that with everyone. When they ask me about my book, I turn into the world’s fastest talker. I don’t mind talking about my books but be prepared for me to speak a mile a minute. It would probably be better that I was medicated but it will lock down my creative process. I figure as soon as I’m finished with the books, we will try Lamictal. I don’t want to return to antidepressants. Weird thoughts run through my head and it will induce a major manic episode.

I want to be normal like others. I want to do these book fairs and things of that nature but it makes me physically ill. I wish I could wake up tomorrow not struggling with my issues. I’m trying to launch my career and I have so many things going against me. I’m angry that I can’t be normal. I’m pissed that I allow my mind to control my life. When someone tells me to “get over it,” I become really pissed. Believe me, if I could, I would. I wouldn’t keep the shades drawn. I wouldn’t check the doors a million times a night. I wouldn’t make sure everyone was breathing every night. I would love to sleep decently for a change. I’m afraid to sleep because the nightmares will return. Some are extremely violent and some shift me back into that place. Irrational thoughts run wild when I sleep. The most vivid dreams and these people say, “You only can dream in black and white.” Um… no… I dream in colors. Colors that would make you throw up. Then I have to combat a part of my brain that sees herself as a dark creature. The hideous creature that sits in the corner every day. She is self-doubt, self-loathing, self-hatred, and all around a mean creature. Her hair is long and dark, her face is pale, and she wears dark clothes all the time. That is the creature, I’m battling against daily. That is the creature who wants to protect me and shield me from the world. I hate it. That’s what I think on a regular basis.

To dismiss someone’s rape story. That’s cruel to do to us. Not everyone can be strong and “get over” it. I take a person’s rape story seriously. It disgusts me that anyone says it’s “attention-seeking.” There is nothing “attention-seeking” about rape. It’s having the balls to come forward and revealing the most darkest secret of your life. It’s urging other women or men to come forward. You’re not alone in this cruel world. Nobody wants to be a member of the “rape” club! What the fuck are you thinking? Shut up and listen. This isn’t easy for any of us to come forward. It makes me sick to even write this post. But I need you to know where I’m coming from. “Keep it to yourself.” Fuck that mentality. So, when the next innocent person is raped, should they keep it to themselves? You know, to allow that perpetrator to keep on raping people? Should we keep silent about that? Come on, now. We need a reform in a our justice system. We need to let them know this isn’t something to get over. Rape is a lifetime sentence and a club nobody should be a part of. To have your life thrown upside down isn’t something to get over. It is the most damaging and soul-crushing experience of a lifetime. Your innocence is gone. The person you were is gone. You can’t get that person back. You try to find yourself but everything is a dark abyss. I’m scared for my kids. They have to grow up in such a negative society. It would be nice for people to understand one another without judgements. To love one another and to respect the differences in each other. But we can’t do that, can we?

We have Trump and Clinton running for the highest job in our country. Neither of them are respectful to each other. As for Trump, I’m not defending the man. He said what he said. To treat women like property and garbage. I don’t care. I can’t and won’t vote for that. Hillary isn’t any better. She lost my respect years ago, when she chose to stick by her husband. The husband who had numerous affairs and a lingering rape case above his head. If she would have ditched him years ago, my vote would have been for her. She disappointed us. I feel let down by her. She could have been a strong woman. She didn’t need Bill. She still doesn’t need Bill by her side.  With that rape case above Bill’s head and the fact that Hillary knew about it, it’s a disservice to all rape victims. Trump also has a rape case against him in December. Jane Doe filed a lawsuit against him. She was a thirteen year old girl. I was sixteen. Just three years older than she was. I’m sorry but I can’t vote for those candidates. Not with rape lingering above their heads. That’s a smack in my face and all rape victims. I’m sorry. I’m standing firm on my beliefs.

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