Today is #WorldMentalHealthDay. Please spare a thought for those struggling with something not visible. The mind can be a scary place. Support one another, be conscious of how you treat others. You never know what that person is going through
Well 2 weeks before the UK went into lockdown I was at hospital having a camera inserted into my nose and had other tests. The diagnosis was Allergic Rhinitis, 2 months on I’m still waiting for test results to find out what it is I’m allergic too. However it could just be my fibromyalgia and the body is attacking itself. I have tried to chase up the results but the GP, hospital and NHS are understandably busy dealing the pandemic.
I’ve been in self isolation for almost a month now as all my medical conditions been I’m classed as a vulnerable person during this crisis. But the only trouble is all of the symptoms I get overlap with covid-19 symptoms, so I don’t know what is what. However one thing I can say is I feel terrible: physically, mentally and emotionally.
Social distancing is a very interesting thing at the moment. I’ve never been very social and social situations were very difficult for me with my autism but I’m finding that now everyone is social distancing its making parts of my life easier. I don’t have to try and make small talk or remember the correct social etiquette. I think neurotypical people (non Autism people) will find this a lot more challenging. For years I’ve been told to try and be more social to speak up and fight my corner, but now those rules have gone out the window and everyone is experiencing the world as a person who is introverted and doesn’t like social events.
As for the lockdown and having to stay inside, well that’s just been my normal life for 7 years. The outside world with my Autism, anxiety, depression and PTSD has been a scary place and its been better and easier for me to lock myself away and now the whole Country is doing it. People seem to forget that lockdown is their usual way of life. Hopefully now that the whole country has experienced it peoples attitudes will change, wishful thinking I know.
I struggle with recognising that I need help and struggle with asking for help. I have reached out to Bury Council, the government and mutual aid charities near me to get help with shopping and collecting medicines, so far everyone has said no. Even though I’m classed as vulnerable and self isolating people are refusing me help because I’m not elderly. I agree elderly people need and should get help but so should others. Everyone is trying to save lives and protect the NHS but by ignoring vulnerable people isn’t right, we have a lot of complicated medical conditions and would rather manage at home then put more strain on the health service. But at the time. Without help or coordination we are forced out to do shopping and collecting medications to make sure we stay alive and healthy, putting ourselves at risk and that could tax the health service later on. I struggle to ask for help, I’m very independent and I don’t want to cause trouble or make someone’s lives more difficult by asking them to do things. Even more so now that people are risking their lives to do it.
STAY HOME – PROTECT THE NHS – SAVE LIVES
Throughout my life, I’ve struggled to fit in. things people find easy, I dont and came up with numerous ways to fit it or ways to accomplish things. Despite this I’ve always been told I’m doing things wrong or someone would say “I wouldn’t have done it that way.” Nothing i have done has been good enough and honestly throughout my life I’ve felt a failure.
However since my autism diagnosis, my life and outlook on things has changed dramatically. Its difficult for me to accept that I’m different and that I am in fact disabled. Everything i have been through in my life and the way i react to things or the way i think, is different to everyone else. Thats a hard thing to get my head around. It wasn’t until my diagnosis that certain aspects of my life began to click in place. I’ve started to realise some of my reactions and feelings are autistic traits.
Because I’ve tried to fit in to the world around me and to be accepted by people I have learned to mask things. (Masking is a process in which an individual changes or “masks” their natural personality to conform to social pressures, abuse, and/or harassment). My counsellors and Doctor have agreed that masking is wrong and I should stop trying to conform to things and be my true self. This is where things are getting really difficult. I’m trying to be myself and just do things that i enjoy, however for me to do that i’m starting to ‘let go’ / forgetting to do things that would be classed as ‘normal.’ e.g. Energy bills or managing money that i really dont understand it and so am kind of ignoring it and hoping for the best, which i know isn’t the best plan. There are so many things that i still have to try to conform to and things that i have to do. Which goes against being myself and trying to bring down the ‘masks’ I’ve created.
How do i be myself and restart my life as an autistic adult if i cant let go of the image of a ‘normal’ adult i pretended to be. It really is a minefield and that’s before I even get onto my other health and learning Conditions.
After getting my formal diagnosis of Autism in 2018 I was referred for ‘Life Coaching’ in order to help with my confidence and to be able to have more understanding on how i see the world and to try and make sense of how my view is different to other peoples and to gain more understanding of how people react to it.
The Life coaching will be done in 10 sessions every 2 weeks. I’ve only had my first session and The life coaching is trying to get me set up on a proper routine. I’m finding it very tough and gruelling, to be honest I’m struggling. Everything is timed and planned out the day before, from appointments to bedtime and what time to wake up, right down to set times for brushing my teeth. Other than making me more tired and stressed out i’m not seeing any benefit or real reason for it.
Having autism, fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue syndrome (plus a number of other physical and mental health issues) I have always been told to do things at my own pace and when i’m ready. Trying to force myself to do things at set times is just making me depressed and when i dont complete a set task at the set time. I feel guilty and feel I’ve let not only myself down but the life coach and others to. I don’t know if i’m putting to much pressure on myself or its my autism and i’m being overwhelmed. Either way i’m struggling. Maybe its too much too soon.
Hopefully the next session will be able to tweak things and help me out about. I know the life coach said it would be hard and i’m willing to try and do it, but my body is protesting. Doesn’t help that i’m still doing Physiotherapy at the same time.
After years of complaining of pain and numerous trips to Hospital. I was referred to see the Rheumatology department at North Manchester Hospital. Saw a very nice Doctor who really didÂ know what he was doing and asked alot of in depth questions. It was amazing for someone to actually understand what I had been living with and going through for years.
Was poked, prodded and examined.
The Doctor has diagnosed me with the following:
Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)
He advised that all of these along with my Autism, Hyper-mobility and
psychological issues (Anxiety & Depression) are all intertwined.
They are Chronic conditions with no known cure. So is now a process of how to manage the symptoms.
I am being referred to Pain Clinic, Physiotherapy, Hydrotherapy and
Psychiatry. He will be writing to my GP to request that I go on sleeping
tablets and to increase the medication dosage that I’m currently on as
well. They took some blood for testing to cover the bases, but will notÂ need to go back and see that department again.
There was a student Doctor observing my appointment andÂ had apparently never seen someone whose joints where so bendy. So least I’m helping future generations of Doctor’s learn if nothing else!
It really is a genuine relief to get these conditions diagnosed and have someone to listen and understand. I had only been expecting a single diagnosis of Fibromyalgia, so to come away with 4 different conditions was not only a complete shock but also a validation of the fact that I really am not very well. I had thought that all the symptoms I had were normal and the pain I experience is what everyone else feels. It wasn’t until I had been diagnosed with Autism that I have begun to realise that it wasn’t normal.
Its strange having Autism and not feeling, experiencing and expressing myself as other people would. Its very hard to explain, what is normal for me is not normal for the wider community and vice versa.
I have tried to express myself and tried to tell people that things were ‘not quite right’ for years but I have either been bullied, fobbed off, taken advantage of or just plainly ignored. So to prevent myself from having to experience those again I just shut down, closed myself off and told people what they wanted to hear. However since my Autism diagnosis I have been learning to try and express myself better and this has led to these new conditions to be diagnosed to join my long list of other health issues. Now it’s a case of learning how to manage the symptoms and conditions.
Over the years I have learned to mask and hide things and to just keep pushing through them. Now that the health professionals are telling me that yes – what I am feeling and experiencing is real, and not to try and hide it or bottle it up. I worry that people will think that I’m making things out to be worse than they are because they weren’t an issue before.
It’s a lot not only for me to take in, but for my friends and family. At least we have some understanding of what is going on.
Well as anyone who knows me, will know that i’m not very well. Doctors seem to agree as I’ve received another diagnosis of Fibromyalgia.
The main symptoms of fibromyalgia are outlined below.
- an ache
- a burning sensation
- a sharp, stabbing pain
- trouble remembering and learning new things
- problems with attention and concentration
- slowed or confused speech
- dizzinessÂ and clumsiness
- feeling too hot or too coldÂ â€“Â this is because you’re notÂ able to regulate your body temperature properly
- restless legs syndromeÂ (an overwhelming urge to move your legs)
- tingling, numbness, prickling or burning sensations in your hands and feet (pins and needles, also known as paraesthesia)
In some cases, having the condition can lead to depression. This is because fibromyalgiaÂ can be difficult to deal with, and low levels of certain hormones associated with the condition can make you prone to developing depression.
I think my doctors now dreads asking for my medical notes. lol
I’m rediscovering the world and myself since my autism diagnosis. Learning a lot about Autism (still a lot to learn) and finding that lots of my little quirks are often ‘Symptoms’ of Autism. I think i made need to change the name of my blog, as its no longer a road to recovery. I had thought that I had nervous breakdown in 2013 and have been trying to get back to how i was before then. Since my diagnosis I’ve discovered that how i was being and reacting to a lot of things in life was me ‘masking’ or ‘camouflaging’.
I’ve always known that I see the world differently to others and previously when i have said things I’ve either been ridiculed or put down. So haven’t said anything for years and copied how other people react, but now I need to learn myself and the world all over again and to accept and allow myself to feel the way I do.
So Maybe it I should rename my blog “Rediscovering the world” or “Me and Autism”, “My autism journey”.
I should have my final autism assessment by July 2018. Which will make it a year and a half to fully, pin down the challenges and hardships I face, hopefully making things a bit easier.
I haven’t posted in a while cause to be honest i’m scared, confused and very lost. I’m still coming to terms with being diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and what it means and what effects it’ll have on my life.
I’ve always felt that i’m a different and that something has been ‘wrong’ with me since childhood. But when ever I’ve approached the subject or spoken my mind I’ve been told that i’m being silly or just making things up. I’ve always been the weird one and the outcast, and I’ve tried to cope by pretending and trying to fit in and to ignore how I’ve felt and thought. However now that I’ve been diagnosed with ASD, i’m trying to accept how i feel and what i think is ok and to try and express that. But it makes me wonder who I am, as i have been pretending for a long time.
Most people who are diagnosed with as ASD are diagnosed when they are children. I’m 34 and have found that there is not a lot of help or support for autistic adults out there. majority of self help guides and support groups are for children and their parents. I Just dont know where to turn. There is a lot of other medical conditions which are linked with ASD and I have numerous symptoms and alarm bells are ringing, but when trying to express this to medical professionals they dont seem to care or understand. From everything i’m reading and learning it seems i’ll soon have a medical degree myself. lol
All of this is making my Anxiety and Depression worse.
Since my nervous breakdown in 2013, I have been visiting the GP, going to counselling and even had a number of unexpected trips to Hospital. They seem to be finding more and more things wrong with me. First it was anxiety, depression and PTSD. Then they discovered I was partially deaf and classed as hard of hearing, requiring me to have 2 hearing aids fitted. During my numerous counselling sessions it was suggested more than once that I might autistic.
Last week I was officially diagnosed as having ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder). I’m still trying to come to terms with it and what it all means. I am still awaiting the full report from the autism assessor and hopefully this will either answer some of my questions or put me in touch with people who can help answer them.
– Majority of Autistic people suffer from Anxiety and depression. So is how I’ve felt since 2013 part of my Autism Spectrum Disorder or are they in addition to it?
– Most autistic people are diagnosed when they are children, I’m in my mid thirties, apparently dyslexia is a common misdiagnosis of autism. I was diagnosed as dyslexic in 1998, so am I still dyslexic or has this been misdiagnosed?
– I have been reading and chatting to people who have been diagnosed with ASD later in life and they have said that their life changed and really began after their diagnosis. So will mine change and if so how?
– Are my physical disabilities part of ASD?
It is a big change and huge learning curve. For someone like me who isn’t always sure of his feelings to start with it’ll take time to adjust and time for it all to sink in. I’m relieved that they found something and it wasn’t me just going mad, but. at the same time I’m sad, scared and angry. Really is a jumble of all emotions. Apparently grief is an expected emotion after this diagnosis, but I’m not quite sure why, no one has died, I’m still the same person I was.
listed below are some things that are very familiar to me when I was looking through the autism website. I just thought everyone felt this way, didn’t realise it wasn’t normal.
Has difficulty getting to sleep as sensitive to the light.
May only hear sounds in one ear, the other ear having only partial hearing or none at all.
Noise can be magnified and sounds become distorted and muddled.
Inability to cut out sounds â€“ notably background noise, leading to difficulties concentrating.
Certain textures cause discomfort
Has a high pain threshold.
Enjoys heavy objects (eg weighted blankets) on top of them.
Touch can be painful and uncomfortable – people may not like to be touched and this can affect their relationships with others.
Dislikes having anything on hands or feet.
Difficulties brushing and washing hair because head is sensitive.
May find many food textures uncomfortable.
Only tolerates certain types of clothing or textures.
A need to rock, swing or spin to get some sensory input.
Difficulties with activities like sport, where we need to control our movements.
Difficulties stopping quickly or during an activity.
Difficulties with activities where the head is not upright or feet are off the grouâ€nd.
During a counselling session last week the Counsellor has admittedÂ that he is only able to help so far and has identified a number of things. We have been looking at things in depth and using mood diary’s to help. But a lot of the underlying issues we found are ingrained in my mind and cannot be changed, which is causing issues. He thinks I will probably be Diagnosed withÂ Asperger’sÂ Syndrome and he thinks getting the diagnosis will help, in my understanding and will open up other treatments more geared to help me.
I will still be seeing my Counsellor a couple of more times to help with anxiety symptoms and coping mechanisms but wont be a complete fix. Have chased up the Autism assessment and waiting to find out how long the waiting list is.
What are the Symptoms of Aspergerâ€™s Syndrome?
- Difficulty maintaining eye contact
- Difficulty managing social situations
- Unable to respond appropriately in verbal interactions
- Unable to decipher facial expressions or body language
- Unable to show emotions, may seem emotionally robotic
- May focus solely on their own needs
- Focus in on specific subjects they are interested in. Usually the topic is very literal.
- Resistant to change. May expect the same thing to occur day after day.
Taking a break works wonders. The start of September was particularly difficult, I was very depression and struggling with a number of things. I had also restarted counselling with Bury Healthy Minds.
Took a weeks break and headed to London to visit family and this coincided with a number of Transport events and open days. We had a Trip on London’s Mail Rail, Visited Brooklands Museum and the London Bus Museum, this was followed by visiting the London Transports Acton Depot Open day. And the week was rounded off with a spectacular look behind the scenes of London’s Charring Cross Tube station with Hidden London.
Concorde at Brooklands Museum:
London Bus Museum:
Acton Depot Open Day:
Charring Cross, Hidden London:
Saw almost every type of transport imaginal. Am a huge bus and train enthusiast and these really were very special moments that really did make my year! Could have spent hours or days exploring these places more. So much to see. Had a very positive impact and really need cheer me up and get me out of my depressive episode I was in before.
Am now back in Manchester and working with counselling to hopefully improve things. We’ve had 3 sessions so far and have delved right into thoughts, my past and my beliefs. Its quite amazing how intertwined everything is and even my counsellor is realising that focusing on one particular thing wont work or really help. So i’m doing numerous Mood Dairy’s to record what i’m thinking and feeling during the times between the sessions to see if anything stands out. Feeling very positive so far and think my current counsellor is actually starting to understand what life is like for me. On-wards and upwards…
Argh! Don’t know where to start or what to do for the best. I have so many different issues both physically and mentally that need addressing. I have noticed however all these issues overlap and interact with one another. The way the mental health team and the GP work is to focus on one issue at a time. Which in theory would be a good idea, but by doing this its causing different issues to get worse or has unintended consequences.
I have just finished an ‘Anxiety group Workshop’ course of treatment. To be honest I think it made things worse than it did in actually helping. It was good to find out and hear from others that they were experiencing the same anxiety symptoms as I was (although for different reasons) so I learnt that I wasn’t alone and that I shouldn’t be so scared of the symptoms of anxiety. But it did show how bad and deep my depression was, we had an exercise where we had to challenge ‘negative thoughts’ and turn them into positive ones. For example I’m nervous of going out of my flat. “Something bad will happen if I do” so we had to change it into a positive thought “something good will happen if I go out” but I found that although I could make up something and change it into a positive I didn’t actually believe it and just made me more depressed.
Things that need to be sorted:
Depression – Have had depression for around 15 years, It comes and goes but is always there. I was in an abusive relation for 6 years, in a job that i was constantly bullied in for 10 years. A lot of people have taken advantage of me and my good nature, which makes trusting new people difficult. Have struggled with coming to terms with my sexuality, and struggled with my disabilities – Dyslexia, Hearing loss,Â musculoskeletal issues, mental health issues. and often depressed about money. Feeling low increases my anxieties. I have been suicidal and don’t want to fall back into that.
PTSD – Still getting flashbacks and nightmares of the events in 2013. This increases my anxiety and depression.
Anxiety – Because i’m anxious all the time and have physical symptoms (sweating) and panic attacks means I often don’t go out, makes me feel guilty and stops me from doing the things i used to enjoy and this makes me depressed.
Health – Due toÂ musculoskeletal issues I’m constantly in pain, which makes my mood low, I tend not to go and get anxious that if i do go out i’ll be in pain or make it worse and i’m not in the right mental state to face surgery on it. I’m on 13 tablets a day, which i know is a lot and proves to me everyday that i’m unwell and increases my depression and my anxieties. I’m very conscious of my hearing aids and how people might react to it.
It’s only a brief description of the things i need sorting, because theirs lots more involved and i’m not comfortable sharing or bringing up everything at the moment, hopefully will give people an insight into how everything is interlocked and overlapping. So when your focusing on one single issue the other issues get worse, and its like taking one step forward and 2 steps back. GP wants to know how i want to move forward with my treatment and what i want to focus on, but i really don’t know as everything is connected. Nothing is worse than anything else, they are all as bad as each other. Ideally would need to work on all of them at the same time to slowly reduce the effects but the Health system doesn’t appear to be set up to accommodate that.
I cant seem to win or move forward with my recovery. People keep telling me that i’m doing well and they have seen improvements but whats happening in my head/mind doesn’t agree. I seem to have so many problems that its always playing catch up, sort one thing out and another rears its head. If its not anxiety, its depression or PTSD or Physical issues, not forgetting financial troubles.
For the past 2 weeks I have been attending an anxiety group workshop. It’s been difficult on so many levels, this week in particular as we have been focusing on Negative thoughts. This just seems to be making my depression darker/deeper. Which in turn is causing anxiety as i don’t want to end up like i was at the beginning of 2014 when i was suicidal. The current focus of the anxiety workshop is focusing on negative thoughts and turning them into positive thoughts. I’m really struggling to find any positive thoughts that i believe though. Which is making me feel depressed. The medication i take for my anxiety and depression doesn’t allow me to feel anything, it reduces or blocks my emotions, which i have mentioned to the GP and she’s happy for that to continue as she doesn’t want me to be depressed or suicidal again. I currently take 200mg of Sertraline which is the maximum dose. So if i did go back to the GP for a medication review, it would mean changing the medication i was and trying to find one which works again, which isn’t the best idea, i think as that too could increase my anxiety or depression.
I hate feeling like this, i wish i could feel something else. Just don’t know where to turn. I’m in therapy, i’m on medication i’m doing everything i can but just seem to be getting worse.
This Is The Place
A Poem by Tony Walsh
Manchester! This is the place in the North West of England
Itâ€™s ace, itâ€™s the best and the songs that we sing
From the stands, from our bands set the whole planet shaking
Our inventions are legends! Thereâ€™s nowt we canâ€™t make and
So we make brilliant music. We make brilliant bands
We make goals that make souls leap from seats in the stands
And we make things from steel and we make things from cotton
And we make people laugh, take the mick summat rotten
And we make you at home and we make you feel welcome
And we make summat happen, we canâ€™t seem to help it
And if youâ€™re looking for history then yes, weâ€™ve a wealth
But the Manchester way is to make it yourself
And make us a record, a new number one
And make us a brew while youâ€™re up, love. Go on!
And make us feel proud that youâ€™re winning the league
And make us sing louder and make us believe it
that this is the place that has helped shape the world
And that this the place where a Manchester girl
Name of Emmeline Pankhurst from the streets of Moss Side
Led a Suffragette City with sisterhood pride
And this is the place with appliance of science
Weâ€™re on it, atomic, we strut with defiance
In the face of a challenge we always stand tall
Mancunians in union delivered it all
Such as housing and libraries, and health, education
And unions and co-ops, the first railway station
So weâ€™re sorry! Bear with us! We invented commuters!
But we hope you forgive us â€“ we invented computers!
And this is the place Henry Royce strolled with Rolls
And weâ€™ve rocked and weâ€™ve rolled with our own Northern Soul
And so this is the place to do business, then dance
Where go-getters and goal setters know theyâ€™ve a chance
And this is the place where we first played as kids
And me Mam lived and died here, she loved it she did
And this is the place where our folks came to work
Where they struggled in puddles, they hurt in the dirt
And they built us a city. They built us these towns
And they coughed on the cobbles to the deafening sound
Of the steaming machines and the screaming of slaves
They were scheming for greatness, they dreamed to their graves
And they left us a spirit, they left us a vibe
That Mancunian Way to survive and to thrive
And to work and to build, to connect and create and
Greater Manchesterâ€™s greatness is keeping it great
And so this is the place now weâ€™ve kids of our own
Some are born here, some drawn here, but we all call it home
And theyâ€™ve covered the cobbles, but theyâ€™ll never defeat
All the dreamers and schemers who still teem through these streets
Because this is a place that has been through some hard times
Oppressions, recessions, depressions and dark times
But we keep fighting back with Greater Manchester spirit
Northern grit, northern wit in Greater Manchesterâ€™s lyrics
And thereâ€™s hard times again in these streets of our city
But we wonâ€™t take defeat and we donâ€™t want your pity
Because this a place where we stand strong together
With a smile on our face, Mancunians Forever
Because this is the place in our hearts, in our homes
Because this is the place thatâ€™s a part of our bones
Because Manchester gives us such strength from the fact
That this is the place. We should give something back.
Always remember. Never forget. Forever Manchester.
Feeling both physically and mentally drained. Its been a while since my last post, but this past month has been exhausting. I feel I’m just going through the motions.
I have completed my one on one counseling sessions with Bury Healthy Minds and am now on a waiting list for group anxiety therapy. Their will be 8 to 10 people in the group. Hopefully I will be able to cope with it and come out stronger than when I went in. During my one on one sessions with my counsellor she recommended that I had a blood test done by my GP and that I get referred for an Austism test ( GP agreed and just awaiting appointment). The results from the blood test came back and showed high levels of enzymes in the liver, so GP has referred me for an Ultrasound at the hospital.
Having an anxiety condition and suffering from depression I have difficulty waiting on things. Waiting on referrals or test results, gives time for my mind to race through the what ifs? Hopefully one day people won’t have to wait.
My counsellor, family and friends have all wanted me to reapply for PIP (Personal Independence Payment). I had been holding off on this as its so complicated and delves deep into thoughts and physical issues. I had already received and completed a medical questionnaire back in December for the DWP (department of works and pensions) and said I might be called for a health assessment. So wanted to get this out the way first. After 3 months I hadn’t heard anything so applied for the PIP.
My worst nightmare came true when I received both the PIP form and a letter asking for me to attend the health assessment, arrived on the same day. I’m so scared, its my illnesses and me being judged and vetted. I understand the need for them, but wish their where less intrusive ways, and better questions than “So why haven’t you killed yourself yet?” Being asked. I know in my mind its a standard question and why they ask it, but makes me feel insignificant, unwanted and makes me feel a burden and wasting peoples time.
I didn’t choose to have physical illnesses and didn’t choose to have mental illnesses but they way I have been treated wether intentionally or not, makes it feel like its my fault. Which then makes the depression deepen and the anxiety worse. I’m sure I’m not the only one to feel like this but really is a poor way of handling things.
My GP has changed and increased my pain medication, is a lot better than the last one but doesn’t completely rid me of pain. As anyone who’s been in pain for a long time can understand it too leaves you feeling exhausted.
I really did think I was getting better at the start of the year but the past 2 months have shown me that although there might have been some improvement there is a long and hard road to recovery to go. That is indeed if I can recover. I know I won’t ever be the same again, but hopefully I will be able to wake up in the morning with enthusiasm and have a pain free day followed by restful nights sleep eventually.
Anxiety is building up and can feel i’m struggling / fighting off a panic attack. I’ve had a lovely few days with my parents who came to visit and i’m quite proud of myself i pushed myself a lot and survived big crowds and lots of decision making. Even though it was family i am very socially tired. Its kind of hard to explain, but when you’ve been active and been in a high anxious state for a while, you need a number of days to relax and chill out to get your anxiety and stress levels down. Something that i think has definitely improved compared to a couple of years ago, but does leave you feeling both mentally and physically drained.
I’m very worried/scared/anxious about getting the new Hearing aids. Have had a hearing aid forÂ my right ear for just over a year now. And now I will be getting one for the left ear as well. After getting my first hearing aid, i realized how much i had been missing and felt so guilty and angry at myself forÂ not realizing it earlier. I don’t know If having 2 hearing aids will make theÂ alot of difference or not to what i can hear, hopefully will, but nervous about it all the same. Then there’s the interaction with the hearing aids and the TV, Telephone and mobile phone. Will i then need adaptations to use these? (TV Loop System, Special hearing aid compatible phones). Its a lot of unknowns and i know there’s nothing i can do about it until i get the hearing aids fitted, but i’m still panicking over it anyway. There’s a part of me that’s exciting about it, i know how much a difference my first hearing made.
Then as we go into April, benefits are reviewed and changed. Monthly payments for bills (Gas, Elec, Water) Have been changed as well. I wont know whats happening or whats going out and what if anything i’ll be left with after. I hate talking money and fiances and really dislike change. Again I know there’s nothing i can do right here and now, but i’m panicking about it.
I So which there was a simple switch to turn off my emotions, I really do hate feeling this way and still feel so very guilty that I’m mentally unwell. I always expect the worst, that way its a surprise if things are better than imagined, (Will need to talk about this to my counselor and see if we can do anything to work on it, it might come down to confidence issues again).
I Have looked into a number of disability pages and grants and to be honest its all very confusing and don’t really know where to start. Most of them you need an assessment or need to contact the charity/company directly, but when your scared of everything and really don’t like meeting people or talking on the telephone it leaves you a bit lost.
Had my audiology care transferred from Bolton Hospital to Bury Audiology. As this is a lot easier and closer for me to get to, making it quicker to get replacement batteries and to have the hearing aids re-tubed.
Bury Audiology had to do another hearing test today, which confirmed the results that I had last year at Bolton Hospital, however there was a decrease in my hearing on my left ear. Audiologist says that is normal as each test it might go up and down and is within the expected range.
She does however feel I would be better having hearing aids for both ears. So in 2 weeks time going back to have them fitted. They are the new ‘Wireless/bluetooth’ hearing aids, so they can ‘talk’ to each other and pick up the best sounds.
Will be another big change, but will take it in my stride. Who knew a bang to the head could do so much unexpected damage. Certainly didn’t expect to have to wear 2 hearing aids before my 34th Birthday!
Am not entirely sure how I feel about it, as I don’t like change, but trying to think about it positively. The retest results were a confirmation for me really, proving it wasn’t a one off. Hopefully my hearing will be a lot better in future and the fact it will be easier to get to the Audiology department, is really good. Saves time and travel costs. All in all a positive day.
I suffer from a number of Invisible Disabilities including Anxiety, Depression, PTSD, being hard of hearing and havingÂ musculoskeletal disorders. On a good day people would never know, but there are times when some help is needed.
I’m very conscious of my disabilities and don’t like to let it show it. Probably stems from the stigma around mental health and people with disabilities and also my own feelings of not letting my disabilities affect my life. Everyone else can do it/things so why cant I. I’m sometimes my hardest critic. I don’t like to complain that i’m in pain, or saying I don’t feeling right, because that’s all I’ve ever known, just assumed that’s how everyone is. however through my counselling I’m starting to come to terms with things and starting toÂ see things in a different light.
I Have seen that Transport for London is rolling out a campaign so people with hidden disabilities can wear a badge which says “Please offer me a Seat” BBC news ArticleÂ I think this is a really good and useful idea. The only down side is that its only for London. I Sometimes struggle to stand for long periods and when travelling on public transport it isn’t always a smooth ride, as you are jostled about (no matter how good the driver), for me this can be very comfortable as my body moves one way or the other, the pressure on my knees and my muscles increases and decreases something I cant prepare for it and can cause more pain. I don’t like to attract attention and wouldn’t have the confidence to ask someone for a seat, even if they are sat in a ‘priority seat’ or a disabled seat. Cause like me they might have invisible disabilities themselves. So a badge would be a good idea. When I have had to rely on crutches to get about people have been more than willing to help me and offer seats, but i don’t always require crutches and being a 34 year old man people wouldn’t think that i’d be disabled.
With more awareness of invisible disabilities and illnesses the Metro News website did a great article of “Why are people with an invisible illnesses so scared to ask for a seat on publicÂ transport?” link to article here
So I’ve decided to take a very small step and order myself one of these:
16mm Round, Disabled Lapel Pin Badge
Invisible Disabilities are hidden, and not something to be proud of or to show off. But people wont know how to treat you if they are not aware. So a small disabled badge on my clothes, might not change anything, but some observant people might see it and may offer me a seat or help. Cant hurt to try?
Truthfully, I am ashamed that i’m disabled and that i’m a different to everyone else. But with counselling I’m realizing “Its OK to be Me” and I have to accept that I am disabled and shouldn’t be ashamed of it or ashamed of asking for help. I don’t think it’ll make a huge difference but even any small difference has to be worth it?
At the moment, too many people with mental health problems are made to feel isolated, ashamed and worthless by other peopleâ€™s reactions.But talking about mental health doesnâ€™t need to be difficult. It can be as simple as making time to have a cup of tea or go for a walk, and listening to someone talk about how they feel.
Being open about mental health and ready to listen can make a positive difference to someoneâ€™s life.
“It’s #timetotalkÂ because if you say something, youÂ realiseÂ how many people around you haven’t, and needed to”
This is what Time to Talk Day is all about â€“ giving us all the chance to talk and listen about mental health.
Whatever the hour, every conversation, every text, every share means more people are reached and more lives are changed.
To find out moreÂ click here
Well I’ve had 2 sessions of counselling so far in my current round of treatment. A number of things have come up that i’m currently working through.
I’ve got to encourage myself and teach myself “Its OK to be Me”
I’m a very sensitive person and take almost everything to heart, during counselling we worked out that rather than being myself. I’ve tried to please everyone and change who i am to fit in with other peoples perceptions of how i should be. This isn’t helpful or healthy. This is a very difficult post to write as it covers some of my most sensitive vulnerabilities, so apologies if i ramble on.
This is a big one, I have never been comfortable with my appearance for numerous reasons. My hair when it grows long starts to curl and as a child i was teased a lot about it. Didn’t matter if i tried to gel it or style it, it always ended up curling. Always been told people would love to have curly hair, but for me I hate it. So much so now that its just easier and less stressful to shave it all off and have a skinhead. My clothes and style have also been an issue, what i find comfortable or stylish the majority of people wouldn’t be seen dead in it. This did results in sometimes being called names and some clothes were never worn again because of it. I have three very large scars on my knee after having a full knee reconstruction in 2011. I feel humiliated and ashamed that they are there and tend not to show them off. So Don’t wear shorts and always have my legs covered up. Nothings has happened or be said to me about my scars, but when i have gone out in shorts (very rare) I always feel that people are starring and talking behind my back about it. My Weight and body shape is always a concern for me. My weight tends to fluctuate depending on my health, and again I’m just not comfortable in myself.
Â Asking for Help
I don’t like asking for help, it makes me feel humiliated and ashamed. I Feel its a sign of failure asking for help or accepting help. Having numerous physical, mental and learning difficulties, i often have to ask for help in my life. It upsets me that i see other people who are able to do things without help, wish I didn’t need help, but i know i do.
I’m not clumsy, i’m not accident prone, but if anything can happen it will to me. I broke my leg rolling over in bed. I Was hit by a truck while walking on the pavement. I Just seem to go from one medical disaster to another. It affects my life so much, from social activities to work. It is so embarrassing letting my friends and family know that I’ve been injured or am unwell yet again. It has become a running joke “Only You.” Having both long term physical issues and mental issues, symptoms tend to get crossed and confused. After a nasty fall in which i fractured my skull, i lost my hearing in my right ear. But i didn’t know until 3 years later after a different test for dizzy spells showed it. So i really don’t know what is physical or mental anymore.
I Have always had issues with my reading and writing from Primary school to now. It means i’m not as quick as everyone else and do need extra help in almost everything. A lot of people don’t understand Dyslexia and don’t understand that each dyslexic person has unique challenges, there isn’t a fix or and aid that is suitable for everyone. A lot of people see Dyslexia as an excuse and that your just lazy or cant be bothered. But believe me I’m not. I try so hard, I feel sometimes i work much harder than others but get the same results and that extra work is never praised. Unfortunately its a disability that people try to hide and find ways to avoid it.
Since 2013 i have felt extremely exhausted both physically and exhausted. I struggle to get a good nights sleep and also with all the symptoms like Panic attacks, anxiety, burping fits, sweating fits my body is working overtime to keep up. I have dark circles and bags under my eyes, which must make me look awful. I do try and push myself to keep awake and to get certain things done. But this runs me down and leaves me more exhausted. Taking naps during the day doesn’t really help, as still so much to do.
Again apologies if i Rambled, but hopefully, friends and family might understand a bit better, if they know how i feel and think inside. I’ve got to come to terms with all of these and just say “It’s OK to be Me”