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Excerpt of a book I will never write

They tell you that they can’t be with you anymore because of your depression. The person that is supposed to help you through the hard times has decided they can’t deal with it anymore. Now I understand depression can be really difficult for those around you. It can bring them down too. It’s hard for you to live with it, nevermind someone else, but there’s something about it that just seems so incredibly unfair.

You knew I had depression before I even realised for the first time that I loved you. Why did you wait so long to tell me? Why did you have to wait until I loved you more than I’ve ever loved anyone?

Depression has taken away so many things in my life. My education, my friends, and a career. But, not only that, it’s taken away love. To realise that someone can’t be with you because of your depression makes it so much harder to bear because it’s not something you’ve chosen; It’s something that has happened to you, and it’s something that is out of your control.

When one person tells you they can’t handle it, you start wondering if anyone could. You start to believe that if you have depression then you aren’t worthy of love. You aren’t good enough.

When you come out of your depression you become so afraid of going back there, not only because it makes you feel awful, but because it so clearly affects everyone around you. You feel like a burden. You become so afraid of getting close to someone in case depression comes back around and they leave you.

You left me at the most difficult time of my life. I was about to be diagnosed with a chronic, lifelong mental illness when I needed someone the most. and the worst part is that I completely understand why.

 

Vegan Risotto and Courgette ‘Lasagne’

Sometimes self-care is making a super yummy and healthy lunch. I thought I would share this awesomely yummy and good for you, Vegan Risotto and courgette ‘lasagne’.

risotto-lasagne

You will need:

  • Arborio risotto rice
  • 2 vegetable knorr stock pots
  • Two big o’ handfuls of spinach
  • Courgette lasagne sheets (I got mine from Sainsburys) or sliced lasagne
  • Free from dairy pesto
  • 1 microwave steam veggie pack
  • 1 litre of boiled water
  • Vegan butter
  • frying pan
  • lasagne dish
  1. Steam your veggies in the microwave as instructed on pack
  2. Add boiling water to knorr stock pots in a pouring jug and stir until mixed.
  3. Fry your arborio rice in vegan butter for two minutes in a medium heated frying pan.
  4. Add a small amount of stock at a time to the rice until it is absorbed fully. Stir continuously until cooked
  5. add washed spinach till fully wilted
  6. spread half of the rice out on the lasagne dish
  7. place your courgette strips on top
  8. add three big spoonfuls of pesto till the layer of courgette is covered.
  9. add your pre steamed veggies
  10. add the second layer of courgette strips
  11. then add the final layer of risotto
  12. cook in 180C oven for 25 minutes or until the top is crispy and the courgette is soft.
  13. serve and enjoy

The Cost of Being Borderline

When I talk about the cost of being borderline, I don’t mean metaphorically; I mean “how much does it cost to have borderline personality disorder (BPD)?”. Often when discussing mental illness we talk about how emotions affect a person or their family and friends but rarely is money discussed when it comes to being mentally ill.

At the moment I’m struggling with my mental illness so badly that I’m unable to keep a job. The reality of this means I’m not in receipt of a decent living income. I live month to month with money which can be very difficult for the average person never mind someone suffering from a mental illness such as BPD.

My impulsivity regularly causes me to spend money I don’t have on things I don’t need. It doesn’t feel that way, in the moment. I often feel like I HAVE to buy these things to ensure my happiness. This is not an uncommon reality. Many people that have BPD suffer from compulsive spending. Not only this but they can suffer from a range of addictions that can be very costly. From alcohol and drug addictions to food addictions. It can be costly trying to keep these addictions satisfied and often there are extra costs associated with these addictions that you wouldn’t realise. Such as with food addiction, this can cause health problems as well as buying larger clothes. These addictions can mean having to spend money on private treatments because, depending on where you live, treatment may not be paid for by the government.

Often self-destructive coping mechanisms like binge spending can be triggered by emotional pain, which is usually regular for those suffering with BPD. Someone who is usually frugal with money may max out a credit card after an argument with a loved one. Even though we might be aware of the fact it is going to impact us negatively in the long term, it is very difficult for us to get past the comfort it provides us in the moment.

BPD itself requires treatments and medications that aren’t always covered by the government. At the moment, although I’m not working, I’m still paying for one on one therapy which is not provided by the NHS. People like me often have to rely on charities to help with treatment because the NHS can’t keep up with the demand for treatments for the mentally ill. It also can be quite expensive having to attend these appointments with little income. It is very costly running a car so having to rely on alternatives is a necessity. It can also be very daunting to those suffering from mental illness to use public transport. For example, because of anxiety, I often have to rely on expensive taxis to get me to appointments, which is difficult to afford on a low income.

One symptom of BPD according to the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders) can be to have an unstable sense of self. This, for me, often means almost changing my style completely on a regular basis. This means new clothes, new shoes, new accessories, new makeup, new hairstyles. This all costs money and depending on what style I choose can end up being very pricey. It also means new hobbies. I’m constantly flitting from one hobby to another. Some are free and easy to do, such as meditation, but then there are things such as candle making which can end up being quite expensive.

The biggest cost, though, someone’s life. According to LiveScience * a human life is worth approximately $5million. One in ten people with BPD commit suicide, so when your loved one with BPD asks for help please listen.

* “the value of a statistical life turns out to be around $5 million” – http://www.livescience.com/15855-dollar-human-life.html

 

If they need immediate help or are in the process of attempting suicide, take them to your nearest ED in order to help them. Take any suicide threat seriously. If you have BPD or you know a loved one who has BPD and need a person to talk to about situations, please call your local suicide hotline or Samaritans. They are there 24hrs in order to help people going through a crisis, those with thoughts of self-harm and suicide, or someone who is going through a tough time in their lives.