Truths

What Are Your Goals?

 

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Something’s lurking. I’ve been much too content this last month. It’s like I’m the delicate fawn at the drinking hole and I can feel the lioness crouching in the weeds a half a mile off, waiting, watching, and licking her teeth in anticipation of my floppy fawn flesh on her tongue and my blood dripping down her jaw.

Floppy fawn flesh.

Alliteration phrase of 2016.

Is fawn flesh actually floppy? I suppose it could be. The next time I’m around fawn flesh, I’ll make sure to flop it around and report dutifully back to you all.

Floppy fawn flesh fears fire.

Say that ten times fast.

Tongue Twisters. Most words are tongue twisters to me. If it wasn’t bad enough that the world cherishes extroverts over introverts, they are also much more fascinated and give much more respect to orators than they do writers. Most fantastic writers aren’t recognized for their talent and their intelligence until their death.

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I guess I’ll let my soul be flattered by your recognition while I’m hiding in your fucking closet and haunting your every step.

 

I’m suspecting most people who are different know they’re different. I assumed I was shy until I reached the age of 14 and started researching how I felt–my first real introduction into psychology.

Before that I had my eyes set on Musician’s Institute.

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Then I figured I’d become a millionaire writing a best seller. I’d be the next J.K Rowling in the realistic fiction section. The next Fyodor Dostoevsky. The next Mark Twain.

Then I wanted to study theoretical physics and philosophy.

But as a teenager I identified strongly with social anxiety disorder. I spent a few days crying over it then wondered what other disorders were out there.

Where would I be today without that one moment in time? Studying theoretical physics, probably. Or producing music at Musician’s Institute.

I learned I have something different to give back to the world. That’s kept me from many breakdowns and it’s why I say it’s important to have goals in your life. I learned I have an external family, all of you who deal with their mental health, whether it be mild or “severe”, and that means I belong somewhere.

How did I get interested in psychiatry? It’s not because I’m a smarty pants, it’s not because I’ve had to take care of my alcoholic father like he was one of my patients instead of being a kid.

I read a book called Brain Disabling Treatment In Psychiatry.

Can you guess what it’s about?

51v59e07qel-_sx329_bo1204203200_I read it at 15 before I understood the scope of the overlap between mental disorders, environment, neurology, and biology. Obviously it’s a book with a very strong opinion, and he had many facts to back up his argument just as those pro-psychoactive drugs have many facts to back up their strong opinions.

I got interested in psychiatry because I saw the disconnect between humanity and medical treatment caused by the introduction of business into the industry. You don’t see doctors poppin’ their new drugs to see their effects like we saw with the man who discovered the possible benefits of lithium. Now you see the same drugs being reproduced with a different name for a higher price and available only on certain insurance plans.

Quickly I learned it’s not the drugs’ fault, nor the people who take them, it’s the people who sell it. 

Some people don’t have the luxury to just stop taking medication like me. Those people can be taken advantage of easily and find themselves either drug hopping from pill to pill with no relief and no explanation for why, further inducing their sense of hopelessness which could, in turn, exacerbate depression and low self-esteem, and spark the idea in a doctor’s head to prescribe even more. Or they find themselves on four or five or six (or more) different medications, many of which they might not need.

That’s why I’m interested in psychiatry. People whose rationality gets disrupted don’t always have the cognitive ability to choose how their treatment goes. I want to be that one trustworthy person they can come to who they know won’t ever feed them lies or misuse them.

Psychiatry to me isn’t about “oh heh, you get to dish drugs, hurr hurr derp”. It’s about being a doctor. If you think doctors are good for dishing drugs, than you see the issue I’m stressing.

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I haven’t decided whether I want to do adolescent psychiatry or not, but I’m leaning towards it. Children and teens can be taken advantage of even easier because their parents are in such a desperate state of mind. They need someone who isn’t going to take the easy way out. They need someone who looks at their child’s behavior as a family unit, not someone who blames the child’s chemistry, not initially at least.

There are children like Jani Schofield who are different. I’ve been following her story since she was 6. Her parents are getting divorced now, right? Or are they already?

Then there are children who aren’t like Jani and get diagnosed with something when really they just need someone to talk to or their parents to stop letting them play on an Iphone, a tablet, and a laptop 24/7.

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This fact keeps me pushing through each semester. I think about it whenever my anxiety and depression tells me to quit, whenever it keeps me up night after night. I think about it whenever I have a panic attack or feel the urge to self-harm again resurfaces, whenever I rage or my mood gets confusing, whenever I get the urge to attempt suicide or whenever the little people in my head tell me I’m worthless and everyone hates me.

I hesitate to say “voices” for obvious reasons. Besides the hypnagogic hallucinations, I’ve only ever heard voices once. That was during a deep depression. If you’ve been depressed, you’re probably familiar with your brain expressing how worthless you are, but you might not be familiar with other voices, other people , external from yourself and rather loud, telling you that you are. You might not be familiar with them telling you to kill yourself or hurt yourself. I can’t remember a lot. I can remember their voices and I can remember feeling confused, but I don’t remember the moments before I heard them or when I snapped out of it. I can’t remember how long it lasted. I just remember being confused.

The only other hallucinations I’ve experienced were olfactory in nature: smelling wood smoke in the shower water.

Through all my experiences, I’ve learned mental “disorders” overlap quite a bit. I learned environment chips in. I learned genes chip in. I learned biochemistry chips in (not to the extent you’re told about) and I learned thought patterns chip in.

I learned we don’t know as much about the brain as we think.

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I learned a lot of research is biased and I learned a lot of what is published is biased. I learned some of it isn’t biased. I learned it’s hard to tell between the two.

I learned there are good psychiatrists and bad psychiatrists. I learned some people do well with medication and others don’t.

I learned the brain is as unique as a finger print and deduced the wide-spread idea that mental “disorders” are due solely to a chemical imbalance is about as accurate as my hand being my foot and about as creative as this painting:

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Green White By Ellsworth Kelly. Sold For 1.6 Million Dollars

 

 

About AlishiaDee (372 Articles)
Alishia D. is a blogger, a beginning novelist, and a counselor at 2nd Story Peer Respite house where diagnostic labels and the culture of mental health is long forgotten. She's a mental health peer who has bounced through as many labels as she has doctors, and enjoys being sarcastic when she can. She also hates writing in 3rd person.

1 Comment on What Are Your Goals?

  1. Please have a look at my post “Creativity and mental illness”, I am sure you will have a good read!

    Liked by 1 person

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