Beware of the helicopters

Finally found a break to post.

Long story short: I just began a preventive medicine rotation at a very small hospital about an hour from the city. Living on my own for the next few days and working with a very underserved community. I mean, my school’s hospital system works with a generally underserved population, but the patients I’m seeing now are a whole other level of “underserved”. So far I like it, and it’s an incredibly interesting experience how you have to tailor your interview, explanations, etc. for each patient, plus the variety of things and people you are exposed to. Also, it’s a completely different experience for me because there’s a lot of community outreach involved. But it’s also quite heartbreaking, knowing your patients wouldn’t usually present with such severe forms of disease if only they had good access to healthcare and people who actually cared about them (because, let’s face it, “the system” doesn’t care).

I find myself missing psychiatry though, more and more each day. But I also like preventive medicine and community outreach a lot, so I’m ok with that.

Meanwhile, I saw G on Tuesday. Felt I wasted her time. *Sigh* I tried to talk about The Ex and all that crap, but I just wasn’t feeling it. Though I did tell her a few facts I hadn’t told her before, about things that happened with The Ex when I was still underage. I was very out of it the whole session. I was even a bit bitchy at one point, but she returned that bitchiness right back at me. I love that about G, she tells it like it is and doesn’t avoid the difficult stuff.

She’s worried about my eating. Wants to know what R thinks about that. I call bullshit. I told her, in all seriousness, that their getting involved in that aspect of my mental screwed-up-ness feels like they want to control me, and my body and mind interpret it as a threat. I must say, in a weird and detached kind of way, it’s fascinating how the eating disorder manipulates me and how my mind thinks accordingly. Does it show that I’m fascinated by mental illness/health, brain and behavior? Ok, taking off my doctor hat now and putting my patient hat back on.

Since I’ve been living alone these past few days, I’ve felt an incredible amount of peace food-wise….in a twisted sense, that is. I can eat or not eat whatever I want and nobody’s badgering me about it. Nobody is commenting on what I eat or not, about food, or badgering me about when I’m going to eat or what I’m going to eat or how I’m going to eat it. It’s just me, my body, and whatever I feel like eating or not. There’s not much anxiety when I do eat because nobody is watching me.

I wonder if anyone other than myself will understand that previous paragraph? To me it makes all the sense in the world.

It’s a relief, honestly, living alone. I’m far from all the stress, the noise, the food stuff….it’s just me. However, I’ve only been two days here and I still can’t seem to shake off all of the stress from home. In spite of that bit of inner peace, I still feel my parents’ stress hanging over my shoulders and I can’t seem to be able to unwind fully just yet.

My dad said they’ll come visit me in the weekend….but I don’t want them to. Typing that just now felt horrible. They’re supervising me. I fucking hate it. My parents were never really “helicopter parents”, but for some reason now I’m in my 20s their anxiety and stress have reached incredibly high levels. And after I got hospitalized they’re even worse. Problem is…I’m at that age where I just want to be independent and live my life. It’s an incredibly complicated game of tug-of-war with them. All the time.

My eyelids are giving up on me. I think it’s time to go to bed.

  1. “I wonder if anyone other than myself will understand that previous paragraph?”

    I’m sure I’m not the only person who can understand exactly what you were saying in that paragraph, but personally speaking, I so get it. The moment I moved out on my own, a huge weight lifted from my shoulders. Don’t get me wrong, I still feel weighed down at times, but there is an enormous peace that comes with, like you said, eating without eyes on you.

    I get why that happens, though. Watching someone you care about go through some rough things isn’t a pleasant experience in itself. And when that happens, you want to help that person as much as you can, because you care. But what people (I have to say) “on the outside” don’t understand is that there’s a point in the healing process when the person being helped has to begin feeling some sense of normalcy. And when the helper is constantly reminding the helpee about what the helpee has been through (as if the helpee isn’t fully aware of it every single day), that can cause some backlash against the helper.

    I’m not sure any of that made sense with the “helper” and “helpee” stuff. lol

    But anyway, it’s very important, as someone who helps other people, to know when the point in time comes to let go of the bicycle and allow the person to ride it without help. You have to teach the person how to help themselves and, once that’s done, understand when the appropriate time is to allow the person to be normal (or what “normal” means for them). Otherwise, you’re just going to send a message to the person, even if it’s unintentional, that the person isn’t strong enough to be normal without you. Like you said, it’s a tug-of-war between the person wanting to help and the person wanting to feel like they’re okay enough to help themselves now. It’s like I say when it comes to parenting: the job of parents is to raise their kids to not need them. I think it’s the same thing when it comes to helping; you have to teach someone to not need you.

    That’s actually something I learned after I moved out on my own, how to be strong for myself. Unfortunately, the people “on the outside” don’t see me that way and that hurts me and feeds doubt into my mind and I have to battle that in addition to what I already go through. Like I said, I still feel weighed down. Things are a bit easier now, but still very difficult.

    Anyway, if you don’t mind me going on for a bit longer (feel free to stop reading at any time, if you haven’t already), and if you don’t mind me commenting on you not feeling it in your latest session with G, I’d just like to encourage you to please not worry about that. There are times when you’re not going to feel it, and that goes for anything. For example, I like to keep a regular exercise schedule, but there is the occasional day (like this morning) in which I just don’t feel it and so I skip my exercise routine. The important thing is to acknowledge it and acknowledge how you feel. This morning I said to myself, “I’m not feeling it today, so rather than force myself to half-ass a workout, I’m just going to let my body have this day to rest. And that’s okay because tomorrow I will come back stronger and ready to go.”

    As you can tell, I disagree with Apollo Creed. There is a tomorrow. (That’s a Rocky III reference.)

    I hope of length of this wasn’t too bad. Good luck and have a good day! πŸ™‚


    • Hey, no worries about the comment length. I read all the way to the end, always do πŸ˜‰

      And it made sense! The part about the helper and helpee. I get what you mean. I have an idea of what my parents must feel, especially my dad. And it makes me feel horrible because I know he acts that way out of love, because he loves me. He just has an….annoying way of doing it. I truly feel horrible. Like a selfish little b*tch to be honest.

      I think my parents taught me pretty well how to “not need them”. I just have a lot of anxiety problems and issues that keep me stuck to them. And now that my leaving the house is coming closer and closer, they’re obviously feeling the sadness and also feeling scared that I’m about to go fly solo soon. I just hope it doesn’t break them. I mean, they survived when my siblings left the home, this is just another difficult moment right?

      And yeah, therapy with G was difficult last week, mainly because I was difficult. I feel terrible because she has to put up with me, but I really hope she recognizes that in spite of my feeling crappy I go to therapy because I know she can help me. And you’re right, taking a break every now and then to charge those batteries is ok. It’s so difficult to admit sometimes, though, isn’t it?

      Take care!

      Liked by 1 person

      • Just from reading your posts, I can tell that you’re not a selfish little b*tch. Far from. The opposite, in fact, which would be: unselfish big-hearted person. It’s not selfish to be annoyed and you don’t have to feel horrible about the way you feel. We all have our preferences. And with you being an unselfish big-hearted person with others, it’s important to remember to be the same with yourself and to give yourself a break when your dad does something out of love that you find annoying. It’s okay to feel what you feel.

        About your parents, yes, it’s just another difficult moment that you’ll all get through. A moment of change that’s scary because when we’re accustomed to things being a certain way for a long period of time, the thought of something different, something we don’t know, is frightening. Transitioning from one way to another is a matter of allowing it to happen and becoming accustomed to the new way. Scary, but doable.

        And yes, it is difficult to admit that we’re human; that we need time to rest when we’re worn down, that we make mistakes, that we are sometimes wrong about something, and that all of this is okay.

        By the way, I hope you don’t mind me discussing these things with you or replying to your posts. If you want me to stop, just say, “Dude, shut the hell up already.” Or you can say it in a nicer way or a not so nicer way, if that’s what you’d prefer. lol I don’t want to be intrusive or anything. It’s your choice. πŸ™‚


      • You know, you’re really wise. Reading your comment I feel like I’m listening to G talk. Thank you for your kind words. I suck at accepting compliments, so you’ve left me speechless as usual.

        And don’t worry about the comments. Puh-leeeasee! I love comments and discussions here. I’m always listening (reading), socomment as much as you want. They are very much appreciated πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

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