Obsessive Behavior

Son is not much improved.  It’s terrible to bring your mentally ill family member to a hospital ER.  It is not set up to handle the kind of obsession, frustration, and anger.   When Son is in this state, he does not fully comprehend what is going on.  The longer the wait the more manic and frustrated he becomes.  There are a few Urgent Care centers for mentally ill, but they are not open 24 hou.rs a day.  When Son gets like this there is no where else to turn but to the ER.

It was all I could do to keep him in the ER long enough to be seen by a doctor.  Twice he’d run outside and missed a bed.  By 3:30 Tuesday morning I had to call 911 to get the cops to corral him and keep him inside the ER.  He was extremely agitated, belligerent, and combative.  Pacing wildly, and screaming at people in gibberish.  All in all a very pleasant Tuesday morning, especially after Son locked my keys in the car and I couldn’t rouse Husband to rescue me.  I ended up walking home at 4 AM.  Luckily it wasn’t a long or unpleasant walk.

Mental illness or alcohol?  Both probably.  We just don’t know.  I was going to call to make sure they kept him 72 hours, and ask them to keep him another 2 weeks, but never had the chance.  Son called first thing in the morning begging me to pick him up.  Sounded so contrite, talking in a small voice.  Nothing I’d ever heard before.  He admitted he’d been drinking, that he has a problem.  He said he’d go to meetings and all the group stuff, and everything, if I would just bring him home.  I said I wasn’t picking him up until I talked to a doc.  That happened in less than an hour.  The doc did not feel son was danger to himself or others, and despite reiterating the diagnosis of schizoaffective disorder, practically threw him out.

So angry!  We had hoped the hospital would keep him at least the 72 hours.  Give us a little time to find a sober living or halfway house for him and dismantle his business.  We did clean his room, picking up dirty laundry, general straightening, hoping if it was tidy he would not come home and obsess about his business.  Stupid me, for thinking it was a nice thing to do, but he was angry and belligerent about our help.  Apparently, we ‘threw everything’ away.  I handed him the trash can and invited him to go through what we tossed out.  He said something about how he feel’s he’s lost his mom, and that I don’t care or I wouldn’t treat him like this.  He doesn’t believe me when I try to counter that claim.

He is unable to comprehend my behavior and attitude toward him, and I don’t know why.  I’m here, available, and speaking to him, yet he thinks I sound angry.  He still angry, argumentative, and just plain wrong!  He believes I am angry with him, though I have tried to explain I am angry at the obsession.  I don’t hate him, I hate the addict in him.  To him that said I don’t love him, and am not willing to help him.  He feels I don’t care that he has a mental illness.  I told him it was a diagnosis, not an excuse.  You can imagine how that went over.

He has needed round the clock watching since coming home.  He is obsessing over these damn accounts.  Important stuff, sure, but he won’t write down his passwords, and he screws up his accounts every time he has an episode like this.  He has called help lines, tried a dozen different passwords and now wants my help!  How can I do anything with his accounts if he has gotten locked out?  I explained there is nothing I can do for him without his passwords.  So now I’m a shitty mom for ‘not supporting’ him, to hear him tell it.

And he’s not able to use his iPad since he somehow ruined the plug in and can no longer plug it to a charging cord.   He has a big expensive gaming computer that he barely knows how to operate, but he can’t obsess about learning how to move around on that.  Instead, he is using his dad’s iPad to sign into his accounts.  He keeps asking for his dad’s passwords.  When I asked why, he said he needed them to get into his email.  I don’t know what he is thinking.

He is putting words in my mouth, twisting what I say, and in general is just being a big dick.  He can’t seem to understand anything that is said to him, as it does nothing to change his behavior.  He is practically inconsolable in thinking I hate him and that hurts more than he could ever know.  Nothing I say comforts him or reassures him.  I don’t know what else to do.

He is driving me absolutely mad!  Where is the ‘throwing up your hands in surrender’ emoji?

I Blew It

It is so easy to have an Us/Them mentality.  Us good.  Them Bad.  Us smart, Them dumb. Us openminded, Them not.  Us arrogant!  I’m past 50 now and have obtained a tiny amount of wisdom.  Unfortunately, that newfound wisdom doesn’t undo all the stupid, insensitive, arrogant and closed minded things I have done.  It doesn’t mean I won’t still do these things, but being aware has made this far less likely.

I attended the “Coffee and Conversation” with my Long Beach rep the other morning. The room was a small, but full, and there were plenty of people standing.  We even had the added treat of having a few Trumpsters attend as well.  One woman stood up,her hands and voice shaking, to protest the fact we are giving minors poison that will give them cancer.  Turns out she’s talking about the Pill and wants to defund Planned Parenthood. I must say we were not very kind, and simply told to her please shut up and/or leave.

I blew it.  This woman was waiting outside and stopped people as they passed.  I blew it. I should’ve taken that chance to speak with her.  I lost the opportunity to listen to her.  She was moved to show up at this event, we should respect her resolve, and her opinion, no matter how misguided.  She feels this is an important issue and we are wrong to dismiss it this way.  This would’ve been an opportunity to understand her side, find the common ground of caring for the next generation, while calmly explaining to her the realities of withholding birth control of any kind to anyone.  I’m ashamed of my knee jerk reaction and anger.  Now that I am aware of the opportunity, will I take it in the future?  I plan to.

We must all learn to control our angry reactions to Trump and his supporters.  Avoid dehumanizing the Trumpsters.  Once a group becomes ‘less than human’, the chance of violence increases.  Trumpsters are not the enemy.  Not directly.  Sure they may have voted for the egomaniacal wizard in the orange wig, but many are uneducated, mostly unaware, and were misled and lied to.  If we shut them down when they show up at rallys and meetings, we will never make any progress.  We must include these people in the discussion.  We need to help them understand they’ve been lied to.

The American Revolution didn’t start overnight.  It came after years of anger and not until the majority of the population felt pinched did the war begin.  Armed revolution will come to the US and it won’t take 10 years.  If TrumpCare passes the Senate as is (which is unlikely), people will begin to really feel the impact of Trump personally. The GOP will continue to cut these benefits and deny them outright to more and more people.  When people are barely surviving or dying because of lack of services like Welfare, Food Stamps, Disability, Medicare, they will stand up.  The tighter one is squeezed, the less one has to lose.  It’s as simple as that.

We have the chance to ensure that we avoid violence by choosing conversation rather than confrontation.  Let’s take it next time.  I will.

I’m Getting Angry, Then Sad

I am angry, sad, confused, and just plain put out.  Common sense has disappeared from Congress.  Our protests gain a lot of press time and piss off Dump and Pres. Bannon, and yet, they seem to be ineffectual.  How do you keep up the heat?  I have only been actively involved a short time, and yet I already feel utterly defeated.

Here is a link to an article about how senators have voted on each Dump cabinet pick.  This list did not make me happy.

 

Sure, we should hang in there, wait until 2018 with the mid-term votes.  But both my reps seem to vote (mostly) how I want.  But I can’t vote for other states’ reps.  I can’t make the people in Ohio, Virginia, Wisconsin, etc. see it my way.

We can keep up the heat on declaring Dump incompetent due to mental illness, but we’re still stuck with all the other swamp creatures!  How do we clean up that mess?

Yes, I know, one step at a time.  But patience and persistence are not going to be enough.  I can’t sit here and hope the people in Blue States start calling their senators.

I feel like Dorothy, caught in a black & white tornado, and suddenly dumped (pun intended) in the middle of a bright orange swamp!

 

 

That’s About all I can Take

I’ve been limiting my time on FB, WP, and various news sites to about 2 hours a day.  Even that’s too long.  I am so frustrated and fried.  There’s just so much wrong with our new administration (I will not call him “President.”  Ever.) it’s nearly impossible to keep up.  It feels like we’re pissing on a grass fire.  We’re the Dutch boy with his finger in the dyke.  We’re scattered and self-absorbed.

And we know the risks of being complacent.  That’s what got the US here in the first place.  Too much of the same old same old.  Too great a distance between the haves and the Have Nones.

I know we need to work on the GOP, not the Democrats on Dump.  The Dems are already appalled and frightened, and scrambling to do something, anything, to stop the flood of stupidity and immorality being spewed from the mouth of our (EC-) elected POS.  So, I keep asking myself, how do we do this?  How do you convert a Christian to Islam?  Can you rehabilitate a KKK member?  I know these things have been done.  Maybe not often, but it is not unheard of.  But what I can’t figure out is the “how” of it.

I’ve joined the Indivisible movement.  I’m also involved with the Resist movement.  Just two of probably thousands of little pockets of resistance.   We all have the same goal: impeachment.  Easy fix: take Dump out.  Sniper style.  But I don’t want anyone going to prison.  And really, it’s not a complete answer, because of, well, you know.  Pence.  And Bannon, Priebus, Ryan and McConnell, to name the most egregious members of our political heads.

I ponder these problems every night and wake up wondering what new horror Dump and his crew have devised.  I sign the petitions going around.  I’m writing to my reps.  I can see the Resistance is growing, but how long can we sustain it?  We all know about burn out.  I’ve only been moderately active and I need a script for Xanax, just to keep me from biting the heads off the people near me.

Am I just impatient?  Just hoping for a quick fix?  I know that quick is not how things change.  Just like dieting.  You want to lose 30 pounds so you join Jenny Craig or some such.  Spend your money and buy their food.  After you lose the 30 pounds and feel great, you go back to eating just the way you did before.  Soon you need to lose 40 pounds.

You have to change your way of thinking to become successful in controlling your weight. We must change people’s thinking, and that, my friends, will take a very long time.  Do we have the stamina?  The anti-Trump faction seems much larger than the pro side.  It would seem, then, that we have the numbers to sustain a movement.  Our leadership is increasing: a few Senators and Congressmen are growing balls.  Robert Reich is a leader, and Elizabeth Warren as well.  Bernie Sanders is still relevant.

I’m committed for the long-haul, provided I don’t burn out.  Join me?

Here are some links for additional information on the movements and how they will accomplish their goals.

Can we sustain the anti-Trump movement?

Emily’s List

Change will require more than protests

 

An Open Letter to Trump supporters

Dear Trump Fan

You must understand that the anti-Trump group is not simply upset that there are questions as to foreign manipulation in our election process.  It’s not simply that my preferred candidate did not win.  It’s not because most Trump supporters are Obama haters.  It’s because the man is simply UNFIT.

He lacks the knowledge of how to govern.  You might say, yeah, it’s one of the things you like about it.  But knowing how to govern involves understanding others’ points of view.  If I read a book, or several books, about government and how to be effective doesn’t mean I know how to govern.  But I would have a leg up on Trump.

He lacks the diplomacy that is required when dealing with foreign dignitaries.  Sure, you say, he knows plenty of foreign big wigs.  Yes, but those big wigs only deal with Trump on business.  They may respect that, they may not.  It could be they just put up with his lack of grace and humility because he is making them money.  Well, the government is NOT a business, and probably shouldn’t be run like one.  Businesses look at the bottom line, profit and loss.  A country doesn’t profit from its people, but is supported by them via taxes.

To be an effective leader, one must have empathy for the other guys.  Something Trump certainly appears to lack.  In fact, I’m not even sure Trump can define ’empathy’.  Nor can many of his supporters.

One must have compassion for ALL citizens, not just those who agree with you.  Belittling other groups is counterproductive, and makes one look small and childish.  Very un-Presidential.  Disrespectful.  Something Trump seems not to understand.  Respect is earned, and treating others disrespectfully diminishes one’s chance at being respected.

I don’t believe our President should be tweeting criticisms about TV shows, or people who disagree with him.  My President has more important things to do.  My President barely sleeps, has no time to watch TV, let alone have twitter wars.  It diminishes respect for My President in the eyes of other countries, which reflects badly on me.

For a democracy to work, it cannot be run like a dictatorship.  The American people will not yield their rights to a dictator.  Perhaps Trump and his supporters don’t know what a dictator is.  Well, it is exactly what Trump proposes with his refusal to meet with certain members of the press.  The elected leader of this country is bound by the Constitution to allow Freedom of the Press.  There are plenty of Trump supporters who know the Second Amendment very well, but many seem to be ignorant of the rest.

I won’t even go into the lies.  I don’t expect politicians to tell the truth, but I do expect them to own up to their ‘misstatements’ and offer a clarification, or an apology.  And an apology is not “I’m sorry you got mad at me when I called you stupid.”  It is “I’m sorry I called you stupid.  That was untrue and unkind.”

Yeah, your candidate won.  And since no charges are forthcoming from those who claim voter fraud or foreign influence, etc., I’ll go so far as to say he won legitimately.  That still does NOT mean he is a suitable representative of me, or people who think like me.  He can’t legislate people away.  He can’t ignore the majority, not for long, anyway.  One group of people does not have more privileges than another.  At least they shouldn’t.  Trump and his supporters seem to think it’s ok to ignore the rest of us.  The British didn’t take the resistance seriously either.  You do know how that ended, right?

Well, That Didn’t Go Well (update)

Came home from dinner Monday night to find son sitting on the couch snoring.  Just like he does when he drinks.  We said nothing and went to bed.  He woke me at 2AM with the worst migraine.  Took him to the ER.  Sat with him for 4 hours while they gave him benadryl, compazine, and toridol.

He was in a rage on Tuesday.  I slept most of the day, not having had much sleep the night before.  He was still angry today.  Stupidly, I decided this would be the day I would give him a letter explaining how his addiction effects us and how much we want to trust him.  How much we want to help him.  Just how much we want our “old T” back.

My letter did not go over well.  We spent 1 1/2 hours yelling at each other.  Mostly Son doing the yelling.  That stupid letter I never should’ve given him.  He’s left just now, says he’s going to check into the hospital “to give us a break.”  We don’t need a break.  Things have been good for 4-5 weeks now.  I just wanted to know what happened Monday.

I’m so sorry I wrote that note and gave it to him.  Shouldn’t have done it.  It made things worse than just letting him be.

Going to go have me a good cry.  Then probably a nap.  Not up to yoga or tai chi today.  I think I’d rather wallow in a little self pity.

UPDATE

It’s 4PM and he’s been raging all damn day.  He’s talking about going to the hospital, but we are encouraging him not to go.  I know as soon as he checks in, he will want to leave again.  Plus it’s Christmas this weekend, we don’t want it ruined by him being in hospital, but then again, if he’s going to be in a manic rage all week, maybe it’s best.

I feel this is all my fault.  I know how he reacts.  But I was angry with him, and disappointed, and felt I needed to do something.  Unfortunately, for Son, it was the wrong thing.

Random Rants

I’m convinced the Tecfidera I started taking for my MS six months ago was causing these sudden weird mood swings.  They are like nothing else I’ve ever experienced.  It happened so fast, Jeckel and Hyde-like, from talking pleasantly and something went off in my head.  I became angry with Husband.  He could see coming, a small (relatively) meltdown.  By the time we got home we were arguing–sort of. When we got home I went in and took a long shower and a long hard cry while Husband ignored me.  I went from pleasant day to suicidal in under an hour!  That cannot be normal, but I cannot find anywhere on the internet anyone mentioning almost anything about this kind of side effect.  I saw one question on a community board but no one had responded to it.  I know when I tell the doc that I stopped taking it and why she’ll come up with an excuse that it can’t be the med.  Or will she be reasonable and listen to me.  Rare or not, while I’m not really done testing my theory, but the last time I took a pill was Thursday, I’ve been feeling better every day since, I feel more normal and balanced.  Cheerful even.

I got frightened a previous time it happened and quickly went to my shrink.  He has seen me for about 6 months now.  I’ve always come in smiling and doing fine.  In fact last time we met we talked about lowering my dosage,  This time, I come in upset and crying and he just looks at me.  Nothing to say except to recommend counseling. Then he says, “I will refill your prescriptions.” and jotted something in my chart.  Clearly he is not the doctor I need.  I was so spoiled by my last doctor.  He was young and sweet and caring and actually talked to me.  He spent sometimes 30 minutes with me on a bad day.  This new guy, I’m in and out in less than 10 minutes.  He’s made his $500 an hour in ten minutes.  Imagine how many patients he can see in a day.  Cynical?  Yes.  But very true. Counting this one, I’ve seen four docs like this.   Perhaps it’s because II chose one of the least expensive health insurance options, I get the least “good” doctors?

happyBut it is what it is.  I know.  People hate the phrase.  I don’t.  I find it very much an Easter philosophy.  Like something Confucius might have sad.  I heard it first from my boss at the time.  IT was when my marriage was crumbling.  It really resonated, and I adopted it.  I don’t say it constantly, so.don’t hate me.

I posted the other day about diet and trying to change mine.  I’m addicted.  There.  I said it.  In some literature my Husband’s liver doctor gave us, studies have shown that sugar is more addictive than heroin.  I believe it.  I have been working on staying away from sugar.  But we had an apple pie last night.  Of course I had a piece (two actually, I didn’t eat much dinner).  And, of course, last night was halloween, so we have mini chocolate bars left.  I’m absolutely spineless when things like that are around.  I love to get the last piece, too.  What’s that about?

For those of you who read this far, I add the following photos.  A tiny mystery.  I have this plant growing in the yard.  It’s basically a weed, I guess.  I’ve been trying to identify it all day online.  I’ve seen a couple photos online, but not information about it.  My dogs love to eat it.  More than grass.  They haven’t gotten sick yet, so I know it’s not poisonous.  Plus I think animals are instinctive about that.and know which plants are safe to eat.  Husband says I’m wrong and shouldn’t let them eat the stuff.  So if anybody can tell me what this is and that it’s safe for animals, I’d appreciate it.

DSC03508
The seeds.
DSC03505
Growing bud. They open up more as the stem grows.

DSC03506When I told my shrink I regularly take 2 hour naps.  Pretty much daily.  He said a nap was 15 minutes.  Since I was a teen, if I took a nap, it was always more than an hour (barring sickness).  I’m trying to take fewer naps, can’t seem to take shorter ones.  If Husband wakes me after an hour or less, I am groggy and sometimes it’s so bad I have to go back to bed.

Hope you are all having a marvelous weekend!  I send you thoughts of happiness, peace and contentment.  And now I’m going to do yoga instead of napping.   We’ll see how that goes, I doubled my pain and anti-spasm pills this moring, the pain was too bad.  I’m hoping going back to yoga will help.

I had the last (small) piece of pie for breakfast.  I figure, at least there’s fruit in it.  I’ve only had three mini candy bars (so far).