It’s about time I copied over these entries and posted them! It’s May already!
Note: Do you see the anger in this letter? I do! Wow!
WHAT STARTED AS AN OPEN LETTER TO MY T AND ENDED UP SOMETHING ELSE
As you know, I was angered when faced with the medical contract, which required me to gain weight. I was ill-prepared to deal with my feelings about weight gain because we spoke very little about my fear in therapy. This, in part, was my fault, due to avoidance of my feelings. I was literally putting my feelings into the Feelings Box, or not feeling my feelings at all.
One of my feelings I had was anger, as I mentioned. I was angered because I was required to relinquish my thinness, and angry at myself for signing it all away. I was mostly angry at you for writing up the contract and not appearing to care that I was scared enough to write it on the contract.
My anger and fear increased over the next few days, though I was vaguely aware that my fear was increasing, and not at all aware of my anger. My fear and sense of despair over everything I’d lost in my life was at an all-time high, and now I was losing my freedom to lose weight, the last thing that I still could control, the last thing I still cherished besides Puzzle.
I wasn’t aware of just how angry I was at you. All I knew was my despair. So I flung it at you in an e-mail: The desire in me to end my life has gotten very strong over the past few hours. I am very disturbed about losing L. Nothing in particular happened. I’m not even depressed. But I’m getting sadder and sadder about my situation.”
Yes, L is a person. But it was my “situation” that put me in a corner. I felt completely trapped. I needed to get out of the contract, first of all; I needed to get back at you, and yes, I needed to ask for help, all that the same time. This is what led me to send the e-mail, which consciously and deed down both I knew was inappropriate.
I believe that my despair over the medical contract is the #1 reason why I became suicidal, and the #1 reason why I still feel suicidal. I need the intensity of my suiidality to decrease so that I can safely leave the hospital and work on my despair with you, because these issues obviously aren’t going to get worked out while here at the hospital. In the meeting we had, which was a complete waste of time, my despair and the reasons why I overstepped boundaries on Wednesday night the 23rd of February were not even touched upon because my voice was not heard. I wish this had not been the case.
So what now? Ow am I going to work on my suicidal urges if the cause of these urges can’t be worked out while here at the hospital? How am I going to work on feeling better, if the reason why I feel crappy is because I am being forced to gain weight? Sure, therapy is an uncomfortable process, but now I am in the hospital and have no access to you except for the lecture you slapped on me yesterday, which has no relevance to my hospitalization more does it help me get out of here any faster.
They say I should distract myself. Distraction only works for so long. Ultimately, I am left with my underlying feelings, and if I try to “stuff” them they come out in unproductive ways. People bury themselves in their jobs, or in their grandchildren, or in the bottle, but in the long run, they are only faced with themselves.
They say I should go to groups, but at this point I am so angry, at you and at this hospital that I have almost shut down completely. I express myself in my writing and work out my problems in my writing alone. A couple of the nurses have taken me aside and spoken with me, and I do open up to them. I cooperate in some other ways and I am polite. But really, I think that the only way I am going toimprove my circumstances its to do what I love to do…write.
You have hinted, in your proposed contract, that i should attend day treatment, or at least consider it. This is an insult to me. I wasted three years and four months at “Crossroads” [pseudonym] Day Treatment, where my T there sexually abused me, a T married a client, the program secretary ran therapy groups, and a client committed suicide. In hindsight, I truly believe my time would have been better spent taking adult education courses during those years. As far as I am concerned, the years I spent at “Crossroads” were the mot wasted years of my life. I am embarrassed that I ever went there. Many of the clients I knew there then, 20 years ago, are still at “Crossroads”! When I see them out in public, I turn the other way.
But the “day treatment question,” which I’m sure the SW will chime in on, will not get me out of the hospital any faster. Pushing day treatment on me will not affect my discharge date, to my knowledge. Right now, I am dealing with something else entirely. I woke up this morning wishing I was dead. How am I going to get out of this predicament?
But maybe wishing I am dead is different from being actively suicidal. Maybe I am going to have to work out the death-wish after I get out of the hospital. Right now, my death-wish is really strong, but my will to act on it is not as strong as it was before. I do not have the horrible image in my mind of ______ and ____ that I did before. I no longer fear ____ and _____. I don’t think I’ve thought about it since Thursday afternoon. I didn’t have it in my head yesterday.
Was this improvement because I finally figured out, late Thursday night, the cause of my suicidality? Sure, I feel mroe depressed. Sure, the death-wish is vry powerful right now. But I feel less likely to act. And this is very significant.
Should I tell them? Probably. Who? Can I trust anyone on this shift? I don’t feel comfortable telling the doctor tomorrow. She and the SW will jump on it and discharge me too soon, again. I have to be absolutely certain that this is real. I have to explain precisely what is going on.
Maybe I have to say this: “I have not had the urge to do the terrible thing I imagined, nor ahd pictures of it in my head, namely ‘____ and _______’, since Thursday afternoon. I believe that this is because later Thursday I figured out wht fueled my suicidality to begin with. I figured this out by writing about it. My depression is worse and my death-wish is worse, but the likelihood of my acting on my death-wish has lessened considerably. I know this because I no longer feel the terror I felt before, that I would follow through with the act, nor do I imagine myself doing it, nor do I cringe with the thought of it, as if I had hit upon a bad tooth. I no longer feel as though it would take a huge force to stop me from doing this act. For one thing, common sense and basic morality tell me not to do it. For another, the act has faded somewhat from my mind, and hopefully will continue to fade. Maybe tomorrow, things will be different, and the image of the terrible deed will come back into my mind. But for now, this is the way things are.”
I copied out the last paragraph for the staff, and gave it to them. I stuck it on the desk where no one was sitting, where the secretary normally sits. I suppose they will put the note in my chart. I wonder if Dr. H will read it. Probably not.
Note: That note was written while in the hospital, in March. Now, it is May. I still have the death-wish. It shows up in my eating disorder. However, _____ and ____ is gone–for good. Rest assured that this is the case. I have never told anyone what _____ and ______ is. Now that it has lost its potency, I am not afraid to talk about what it is. However, I will not. This is my choice, out of common sense and decency toward others.