Tuesday, October 19, 2010

O-Bla-Di, O-Bla-Da

Antisocial personality disorder is a type of chronic mental illness in which a person's ways of thinking, perceiving situations and relating to others are abnormal — and destructive.  People with antisocial personality disorder typically have no regard for right and wrong. They may often violate the law and the rights of others, landing in frequent trouble or conflict. They may lie, behave violently, and have drug and alcohol problems. And people with antisocial personality disorder may not be able to fulfill responsibilities to family, work or school.*

I feel approximately 10 times better today, physically than I did yesterday, although that was short-lived.  Feeling physically well helps me to feel mentally well, and today I really did feel great.  My boss and I got some long-term plans made for her business and goals for what we'd like to see happen, and getting that done really felt good.  I left work today very happy with my performance.

I am often inclined to feel sorry for those who do not deserve my sympathy.  Sometimes when I watch shows about murderers and rapists and sex offenders in prison, and find out that they often get jumped and attacked because of their crimes, I feel sorry for them!!  How ridiculous, right??  A similar feeling hit me the other night when I saw my sister eating at the kitchen table alone late at night, and she had a look on her face that seemed sad, and all I could see was what's left of her black eye from last weekend.  For a fleeting moment, I felt sorry for her, for no particular reason.  Being fleeting, the feeling went away after just a few moments.  She's a strong woman and not one to feel self-sorrow, so I let the feeling go.

Today, the feeling I had for her could not be further from my mind.  Today, for the second time in 10 days, there was a physical altercation.  As I have promised my mother not to jeopardize my sister's chances at getting custody of her kids, I can only say that I had what feels like half of my hair forcefully ripped out of my head, my left hand and fingers forcefully hyper-extended, and a lit cigarette flicked directly in my face which resulted in a burn on my top lip.  I also cannot leave Phoenix home alone anymore because an attempt was made to run him over, and a threat was made on his life.  Because of his almost getting run over, I am taking the threat very seriously.  Now, this is not to say that I didn't get my hits in as well, and I take full responsibility for the damage I may have inflicted.  Growing up with my sister, physical altercations occurred perhaps biweekly, maybe more often.  This the second time this year I've been forced to get physical with her, and not the first time in my adult life that we've physically fought.

There were so many words said today that had little to no meaning, including countless threats to call the police and press assault charges.  The "C" word was thrown around carelessly, which really makes my skin crawl.  I think the worst was how hard she tried to hurt me with her words when she found that she couldn't hurt me with her hands.  She knows how hard I struggle with my self-esteem and sense of worth, so she said things to me like "You're just ugly," "No man will ever love you," "You're a pathetic 26 year-old who lives at home with her parents with no hope of ever getting married," "You are worthless," and "You're a waste of air and space."  Those are the particular ones that come to mind right now.  If she reads this (and she may), I know that she'll be filled with pride at knowing that these things had any effect on me at all.  However, I have to say, that after living with her and fighting with her hundreds upon hundreds of times, I don't read much into these things.  I know that she says these things with extreme malice, and she shoots to kill, but coming from someone like her, they are just empty words.  In fact, I was more upset that she might try to destroy my beloved pink Chuck Taylors, a gift from my former bestie.

I have many, many feelings about this.  For one, when is it going to end?  Am I going to have to live my entire adult life with the possibility lurking that we will always resort to physical violence with one another, simply because yelling and screaming won't work?  Will it end with her doing something so crazy and so violent that she gets arrested and prosecuted?  And how much longer until that happens?  My poor, poor parents are at a complete loss.  They only want what is best for my sister's kids, but when she acts out this way, there's no way to know if she is ultimately what will be best for them.

There are way too many thoughts pinballing around in my head right now for me to be clear the way I want to be.  My mom and I have been talking ourselves blue in the face trying to make sense of today's events and trying to process what the possible consequences will be.

I'm sad, because I look at myself and only see the things that have gone wrong, and the things that make me unhappy.  I have a really hard time seeing the good things and the things that I like.  I can't stop wondering what other people's lives are like that don't live with a major mental illness, and who don't have family members that act insane.  I get really jealous when I see how happy others are with their lives just as they are, because I think I will never be satisfied.  I see pictures of people laughing and smiling and enjoying life, and I'm envious.  Facebook does not help with this, either.  It's such a wide gap between feeling confident and goal-oriented one day, and feeling as though I'm completely trapped the next, and I don't know how to feel more even!

I just walked away from the computer for a second, and caught a few minutes of Scrubs, which is one of my very favorite shows.  In the scene, Elliot and Keith and Carla and Turk are all sitting and having coffee, and talking about relationships.  They're obviously trying to compare the honeymoon phase of a relationship (Elliot and Keith) with the veteran-I've-stopped-caring part of the relationship that follows the honeymoon phase (Carla and Turk).  I so often wonder if I were in a serious relationship right now if I'd be happier.  I know that having a guy pay extra attention to me makes me happier temporarily, but I know that relationships also come with crappy downs just as much as they come with wonderful ups.  I know for sure that the sucky part of a relationship would almost destroy me right now, so I have to be thankful that I'm not in a relationship.  But then I wonder if the awesome part of a relationship would make me feel that much happier. 

And then I come back to the part about how lost I feel without a best friend to run to.  After the whole thing today, I just sat there, on the floor, next to Phoenix, feeling slightly panicked because I had no outlet.  My little sister was really great, she was my defender today, and she offered to be the person I can talk to when I am feeling like I need to talk.  It was sort of moot today because of her own involvement in everything, and I appreciated the offer.  But it would have been really nice to talk to someone and hear them tell me that I did everything right and that they're so sorry that I'm hurting, without having to listen to how great everything in their life is going.  I have to be very thankful to the other friends I have in my life who consistently offer their support and offer to listen, but I can't help but feel burdensome to anyone who doesn't know all of the history of the catastrophic dysfunction of my life.  Lost, I think that's the best word I can come up with to describe how it feels to not have that one person you tell everything to.  I've always had a best friend, even when "Liz" moved away in high school.  We spent a ton of time apart and eventually made our own friends, but something brought us back together despite the distance, and I think I'm super disappointed that she isn't there for me anymore.  It's almost like someone died, the grief I feel for the lost relationship.

What's going to get me through this, just as I hope that it will get me through the rest of the wonderful and also horrible things that will happen to me, is that life goes on.  People come in and out of our lives, and the loss of one just means the gain of another.  I'm going to do my very, very best to keep my head up and be as supportive to my family as I can be while still maintaining my sanity.  I've been very careful about removing myself from my older sister's divorce situation in order to work on my own mental health, and I hope that I can help my parents and my little sister heal from this latest of emotional assaults.

*"Antisocial Personality Disorder - MayoClinic.com." Mayo Clinic Medical Information and Tools for Healthy Living - MayoClinic.com. Web. 19 Oct. 2010. <http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/antisocial-personality-disorder/DS00829>.

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