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How to fix me? therapy? something?(43 Posts)
I had a terrible childhood. The effects of it have had me spiralling for years and I feel like I am unravelling again. This time I am seriously depressed. I have hugely matted hair and have got so fat I need new clothes (size 24 at moment) as nothing fits.
I have always punished myself in one way or another since I was a child. I used to starve myself but now eating and eating has become my new protection against meeting people and being hurt again. I have this feeling off 'if I make myself ugly and horrible no one will ever get close to me again and harm me again'.
I can't stop eating. I hoard food. My mother starved me when I lived with her and she still told me how fat I was. Even while pregnant with my eldest I was only 8st at full term.
I am now no contact with my family as they have continued to abuse me since I was a child. I am still told all the abuse was my fault and I should be grateful they didn't leave me to rot in care.
The only person I trust is my partner. I don't even trust my best friend in the world. I can't let people hug me. I hide in my house as the outside is too peopley. I am so afraid of everything.
My sister has now been in contact to say she has been having treatment and has been diagnosed with complex PTSD. She has had therapy and she seems to have got herself together. No drugs, no alcohol. Just together. She told me to get help.
I don't know where to start. I don't want drugs. I am scared of therapy. I am just plain scared. I want to be fixed. I have been dealing with hiding the past in boxes and letting it make me ill for more than 20 years. How do I start to fix me?
So far I have decided to fix my hair. It's been matted for 2 years. I have got my first 8th back. That sounds horrible but it is making me feel hope. Maybe if i can fix my hair I can fix me.
So on day 2 of trying my best to fix me I am going to fix another bit of hair. I am also going to not use food to keep people away. I am going to only eat food I love and want.
I don't even know what food I like. I spent so long being starved that I have no idea where to start. Since I met my partner I have discovered that I love broccoli and kale. Before that I only ate pasta, sweetcorn, cheese, bread and pizza. So today I will have some broccoli. Maybe with rice.
All these things seem so little but I want to live again. I don't want to die and I dont want to drown anymore. Sorry this is all a ramble. I wanted to put this down somewhere. Having it in black and white to read back on feels jumbled but I feel lighter. It's not just bottled up in me anymore.
You are inspiring! It sounds to me like you can definitely do this, those baby steps are the best steps you'll ever take. And when you're ready you'll be able to reach out and get the professional help you need. What is your plan for tomorrow's steps?
Thanks for the reply. I have spent an hour or so working on my hair again. It really is something that shows how bad my mind was and is. With every hour I work on it I feel like I have more hope. I have now done 5 hours on my hair. The bottom bit is looking human again. The top has many many hours to go but I see light at the end of the tunnel.
My plans for tomorrow are to keep the hair thats untangled untangled. I also want to do a bit more work on the rest of my hair. I really really want to have my hair untangled by christmas day but that seems so far away.
I don't want to take on too much to start with.
My other plan for tomorrow is to wrap the last presents as the kids start school hols on friday. Other than that I have no idea. It all makes me feel really lost. I know I will be in the house and wont leave now until after christmas.
It makes me feel safe but also really trapped. No one will disturb my peace but it also means my head wins again. I used to love running and being outside and now it's become a huge scary thing. I really wish I could go back to going out without being afraid. It all makes me feel so stupid.
I'm meant to be a grown woman and I'm so afraid of getting hurt that I hide in my house. No wonder my head feels so messed up.
Maybe once my hair is better I can go out and make it to the end of the road. That seems small again but it's been at least 6 months since I made it to the bottom of my road. It doesn't help that I'm so fat now plus I have a heart condition so need to take it easy anyway.
Long term if I could have my wildest dreams come true I would love to go swimming again. Have my hair cut for the first time in 20 years. Die my hair copper red. Find a new job. Something where I can help people. I want to see Ireland and Lands end which is a bit weird but we went to John O groats this year and it was wild and wet and wonderful.
I want to stop wondering if my feelings are ok. I have hidden so long that I feel emotionally dead at times. I want to feel that I'm ok.
My sister having PTSD has finally shown me that my childhood really was hell. It's amazing knowing that someone heard about it and then said "yes it was hell and it damaged you".
I want to feel able to say that I survived hell and I beat it anyway. Most of all I want to feel like I survived. At the moment I feel so lost in everything that I just feel weak and stupid and nothing.
We've got things in common, I've just had front copper highlights in my hair. And being outside in the wild is my favourite way to sort my head out and balance myself. I've never been to John o groats but spend time when I can in the wilder parts of wales, I'm also lucky enough to live near moors and hills. Walking to the end of the road sounds like a plan, maybe get your hair done for Christmas then set off on your first walk on Boxing Day. How are you detangling the hair ? Do you put conditioner on first? How old are your kids OP, and does your partner have time off at christmas ? If you get your wrapping done you'll have done more than me!
You don't sound weak or stupid or nothing. You sound like a strong person with goals. Ireland sounds amazing. Keep setting little goals and they will get to be bigger and bigger ones.
Could you face a GP? CBT really helped me. It's not a talk about your past kind of therapy but rather focus on how you think and act today.
bobbinogs Wales always sounds great but we've not been. It's on the list of places to go. We spend every summer holiday in a log cabin overlooking Loch Ness and it's the one place I truly feel at home. I love being surrounded by the trees and it always feels sheltered and safe.
The hair detangling is getting there. I cut a huge amount off first which has meant that I can finally have a pain free neck. It really was a way to punish me and now the physical weight of the hair has gone (3lb maybe more) it no longer hurts. It feels amazing to be able to move without pain again.
I am applying lots of conditioner and de tangler and taking it slow. It is taking a long time but it took 2 years to get this bad and it wont be fixed overnight. My partner is helping me a lot with detangling. He's not been wanting to upset me about my hair so kept quiet.
My sons are just turned 17 and 15. They are the one thing I've never really messed up. We had our moments but they have a mother and they are loved. I spoil them a lot (well compared to what I had) but they are lovely young men. They would do anything for anyone but they are much better at not letting people walk over them so much.
My other half is off from 23rd until 4th jan. He will be home with me for a traditional german christmas eve with loads of board games. I never really had much time or money spent on me as a kid so I have tried to play games with the kids and making christmas magic for them. On christmas day we are going to do the ususal dinner but also some time in the hot tub. The rest of the time it will be just us apart from one day with partners parents. They are really loving and warm people. They took me in as part of the family.
I will go to gp in new year. I don't want to put more pressure on me just now so it will wait. I am going to start writing down what I eat. I don't want to control calories but just to keep me thinking about why I'm eating and how I'm feeling about it. It sounds so basic but I want to try new foods and new things and try to only eat things I really love to eat.
Thank you so much for listening. It's been so good to get some of the mess from my head out on the screen. It helps me to stay decluttered up there.
OP you sound really brave and I admire the small steps you have taken so far. Well done. It sounds like you have chosen to value yourself and looking after your hair is the first step to moving forward. I hope you have a fun and enjoyable Christmas with your close family.
When you are ready there is help available to undo some of the damage caused by childhood abuse but I can understand why it is frightening. You sound really sensible and by taking small steps you are showing a great positive attitude.
Your Christmas sounds lovely and your family sound fab. As you said yourself it sounds like you've been a great mum and the proof is there in your lovely boys, that is something to be very very proud of, the most important thing and you've done it well. Mine are only 8 and 10, my DS is 10 and I can see the man he will become, it makes me quite tearful sometimes as he's a good lad and will be a kind and gentle man.
Are you or your partner German? I'll be with my DB and his Finnish family this Christmas Eve and will be doing a mixture of Finnish and British traditions. You really sound so strong and sensible and as if you've got a good handle on how to move forward. It's an exciting time of year for setting goals and making changes, imagine where you might be life wise this time next year, copper hair and a running habit maybe?
You do sound amazing littlemissangry. What a fabulous attitude. I'm sorry you had to go through so much shit for so long.
Good luck with everything, it's not going to be easy for you but it sounds like you have good support. Will your partner go to the GP with you?
You sound like an amazing, strong, aware, resilient and downright special person. And your family sound like a strong force of love and support for you. Well done on taking your first steps towards getting to where you want to be.
well done for taking these little steps, keep setting these little goals,you are doing amazingly well.
bobbinogs I'm german but partner is english and very northern. I think he's pretty sweet with his northern ways. The christmas celebrations are the only thing I have kept from my past. The kids celebrate St Nicolas day too.
dangermouseisace My partner would go with me. He lets me make the choice of if I want him along. Like a couple of years ago I had to go to hospital and he asked if I wanted him along but I was fine alone so he stayed with my boys. I'm so used to being alone and doing everything for myself. I've not lived with a parental unit since I was 15. It's hard letting people in to help.
Cguk81 My family are really lovely people. I got so lucky with my lads. They are so kind and caring. My eldest always gives his coats to cold girls. The younger one is on the spectrum so a little more difficult for him. He doesn't really like people too much but seems to love gathering old people around him to look after - like carrying their shopping and things. He also loves giving hugs out. He just really struggles with people his own age.
My other half (don't like to call him dp as he really is my other half) is a hell of a guy. We met online just over 5 years ago. We chated for ages and really hit it off. He is a computer nerd but has this huge love of pixar movies. He also used to be a scout so loves the outdoors.
I had never been camping before so he took me and now we go camping a lot. He really would do anything for me and sits with me at night when I'm having a bad time. I still have terrible nightmares but he lets me snuggle in to him and just holds me.
A friend of mine has always said that I shouldn't feel lucky to have him as I'm a great person but I do feel lucky. In some ways maybe this is my positive after all that horror before. He knows everything that went on and doesn't think I'm a freak. He loves me for me and always tells me how lucky he is.
Thank you for the flowers and support. It's making me feel a lot less alone.
So yesterday was a good day. I have now got nearly half my hair done (worked on it all day, yes it was that bad). Feel a lot less like some scarecrow. Today is harder. I have so much to do and I had a hard night. I wont be beaten this time though. I am going to keep the untangled piece untangled and I wont hide and hurt myself.
I am not going back even if it's hard and I just want to give up. I'm not boxing the past up anymore which is leading to a lot of tears but I am done hiding and I'm done being scared. I've spent nearly 30 years being scared and hurt and I want to live. I want to find me under the fear .
I feel for you, how hard it must be, but you are brave and you will make a calmer more joyful life for yourself. Having a loving and understanding partner will be so helpful for you, your friend is right it is nothing more than you deserve, he clearly loves you very much.
So you're not alone, there's a few of us here cheering you on. I have a rare child and work free day today and I've been for a walk and was thinking about you. Just through the fields near my house, one minute it was winter sunshine then hailstones hitting me with such force they hurt!
Well done on the progress made with your hair, it could be done by Christmas Day! I hope today calms down, just focus on the next thing, little steps, and keep being kind to yourself.
You sound so brave. When I was in the pit of depression my GP was great. Could you contact them? It might be good to have someone else on your side. Good luck and have a very Merry Christmas with your lovely new hair x
You have taken the first step of a vey long journey for which you can be very proud. You say your hair is a mess and you are oveweight.. Yesterday someone could look at you and possibly think what a disgrace... From now on you are someone who has an illness and is doing something to help themselves.
But the journey will still be long. At some time it is likely you will doubt you have the strength to continue. When that day comes, remember the entire community here will be beside you in spirit to help you take the next step and the one after that.. and the one after that... Please keep posting your journey (and don't change your name..).
Well another day done and the hair I have back is still mine. I have done some more and still keeping fingers crossed for normal hair by christmas day.
Today I'm going to do some therapy of my own kind. I'm going to get in the kitchen and bake. I love to bake and used to do a lot of baking for church but as I got worse I stopped going. I miss the people and feeling like part of a community. They still send christmas cards and stop me when they see me for a quick chat. I think that will be another step.
As I've got worse I stopped going out to a little group we did with church - knit and natter. I don't think I ever got much knitting done but it was a lovely group of older women chatting. It was always lovely to hear them talking abput kids and grandkids and they loved my boys.
bobbinogs Hope you enjoyed your child free day. I am going to enjoy my last day without them and wrap the last two gifts. Still can't believe I got it all done when I've been so messed up.
Thank you for checking on me. Hope you all have a lovely Christmas and enjoy time with your loved ones
I am rooting for you! Keep up the good work and I hope you have a lovely Christmas xxx
Have you tried coconut oil to help with your hair? ItS my go to for everything from gippy tummies to moisturiser to shoe polish
I hope today goes well for you. Be proud of how far you've come already x
Do you have a Tangle Teezer? Maybe you could ask at the beauty section for more useful advice!
Just checking in. You sound like you are making progress OP and starting to see a way out.
I would love to hear if you ever make it back to knit and natter. Something to aim for?
Just checking in quickly. Tidying house all day to get it ready for tomorrow. I have been torturing the kids with a Tweenies christmas music cd. We have listened to it every year since they were 3ish. We even had to get a new copy as the old one got scratched to bits.
Really looking forward to boardgames and fun tomorrow. We always get a krautmas present which is always a new boardgame. This year we have Caverna but in previous years we have had exploding kittens and pandemic. We will just chill out with games and fun food all day and have some time as family.
My hair is getting there I think. Another 4-5 hours should have it finished which would be amazing after so long with it being so bad. I'm starting to feel like a human being again.
Going back to knit and natter is on my list of things to do next year maybe. I'm still trying to stick to baby steps but I will send an email to the woman running it trying to find out when its on and if its less busy some weeks. I think a day with 30 odd people is too much right now.
I do have other things on my list for next year. Seeing doctor for therapy referral is on it along with little things like walking down the road. I also want to do a woodland walk next year and another camping trip. I also want to learn to apply make up. I have never had a mother to show me how to do it and then I was busy with my kids (was a teen mum). I never really learnt but I'm starting to want to have make up. Just to make me feel good and pretty. Think youtube might be a good start for that.
Thank you again for checking on me. I will be back after christmas. For now I hope you all have a wonderful christmas with plenty of love and good food. Having this thread to think my thoughts out loud has been a life saver
The steps you have made are not baby steps- they are huge! Well done!
Your hair is almost reclaimed, you are cooking, planning, assessing things. It's great! Keep it up, you will feel so much better, and then you can think about the GP and accessing other therapies. I'm so pleased for you and your sister. EMDR is supposed to be brilliant for people with a trauma history.
you are doing amazingly. I'm so glad to hear that you have a community to get back into- they will have been missing you!
Boardgames sounds great even though my kids are all tech and stuff they still love boardgames.
Sometimes, if it's something you're up to in the future, going into a store and having them put make up on you can help. I was always completely clueless and bewildered, but before I got married I had a 'makeover' at a makeup shop and bought most of the products that they used (they didn't use that many, and you're under no obligation to buy anything at all) I know that if you're not up to big department stores many of the smaller boots have a no. 7 counter and they do them. At the very least, I'd recommend getting someone who works on a counter to help you choose foundation as it's really difficult to see the right shade by yourself. The other stuff is easier to do yourself. I know that as a staunch feminist I shouldn't feel better with my hair blow dried and the small amount make up that I bother with on, but I do…
Hope you have a lovely Christmas. It sounds like you have a lovely time planned
Wow you are one inspirational lady- you have made huge changes and internal dialogue changes too. I hope you carry on treating yourself well and one thing that struck me was your confidence in your parenting ability for your boys... and then your grief at not having the chance of a real mum. I wonder if you could kind of internalise your own mothering voice for yourself- so on days you are harsh on yourself, imagine if you were speaking to your own son or even a daughter. Speak to yourself as you would your child and you may find you heal some of that by yourself. It sounds like you are certainly capable of that and recognising the things that will enhance your life.
Have a wonderful Christmas and I will be checking back soon to see how you are doing xxx
( this is long and painful, ignore if needed) I am having a bad day. I came to mumsnet to hide out a little. I will see about doing the make up counter thing. Just need to try and work up the courage to go out. I really struggle with that.
So this morning I got a christmas card from my biological grandmother. We have been no contact for 2 years ish. I lived with her for some time during my childhood in between childrens homes and my mothers and foster care. My grandmother eventually had me living with her properly when I got to 11.
My grandmother encouraged me to call my mother auntie. She let her husband abuse me. She paid me off which is twisted. ( I still struggle to take monetary gifts from people as a result) and when I started to complain too much she threw me out for being a whore and making her husband cheat on her. I was 13.
I went to my mums house and along with my step dad and siblings we moved to england. Mum couldn't cope with me as we had no relationship. My loyalty was always to my gran as she took me out of care. I loved her depsite what she did.
My mother hated the relationship I had with my gran so she beat me. She also starved us and left us eating out of bins. She used to eat food in front of us and told us how disgusting and fat we were.
Mum left me for the final time when I was 14. I saw her 4 times after that. Once when I was 15 and she beat me black and blue in the street and when I fought back (broke her finger) she called the police on me. Police didn't arrest me but she wanted me put in to care. My stepdad fought to get me back to england. He was an alcoholic but he loved me and went through hell for me. I then didn't see my mother again until I was 17 and my eldest was born. She came to mine and stayed for a few days. It didnt end well. She returned a few years later when my eldest was 3 and younger one was 2. She bit my son as he was going through a biting phase. I threw her out and told her she was dead to me.
I then saw her one final time. She was dying of cancer and I visited in hospital. She tried her best to treat me like a daughter and she managed to dictate a letter to me. She explained that she was too young when she had me and she loved me a lot. It healed a lot but I have never forgotten the hunger and pain.
Throughout all this I still had contact with my gran but with conditions. I was only allowed contact with her if her husband got contact with me. They came to visit and he even made a move on me after my kids were born.
I have moved away from that house as I never felt safe. My gran has not visited my new home. Two years ago I had a breakdown and finally cut contact. I have not spoken to them in that time but do get updates from my sister.
This morning I got a christmas card from my gran. I cried when I saw it. The message is ok and nothing sinister and she is looking forward to contatc in new year.
My home has been so safe for last 2 years but now I just want to run away again. I want to scream and rage and hide away. I was so looking forward to christmas with my boys and now I feel broken. I'm just this horrible creature and I will never be free. I will never be allowed a normal life without pain and fear.
I have no idea how to cope today. I wish I could get drunk and forget everything but I don't drink due to step dad. How can I begin to build strong walls again when she is here. I just feel like I'm breaking
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