I seem to be catching a case of “I really care about you and really like fucking you and I may even be getting feels but dear god I should not be in a relationship with you because you would irritate the fuck out of me and it would end in a fiery explosion” And im like, please don’t do that again, self.
it’s quite exhausting being right all the time.
Just because we recognize a pattern doesn’t mean it’s easy to stop.
Sometimes watching myself repeat the same unhealthy pattern for the nth time gets me angry enough at myself to launch it into life vow/project status.
Change is hard, and takes tremendous motivation. It’s amazing how much pain it takes for me personally to say ‘enough’ and put my foot down.
When people say “I can’t” I’ll sometimes encourage them to say “I decided not to” or something instead. Nobody can predict the future, so maybe nobody can know for sure whether somebody would be able to do something if they tried some more times. However, a person has a right to decide to stop. They may judge that it’s so unlikely they would succeed that it’s not worth trying; and doing it may not be worth a tremendous amount to them. I also have a right to my opinion that maybe they can.
You have a right to your opinion, but you don’t have the right to have them respect your assessment of their abilities. You especially do not have the right to have them take your opinion into consideration when they’re deciding what they can and can’t do.
Inability to do things is real. And yes, I may sometimes be wrong about my inability to do things, but taking it seriously when I think I can’t do something matters. Even if I’m wrong.
There’s a difference between deciding I don’t want to do something, and deciding that I think I am incapable of something, or that doing the thing is unacceptably risky for me.
Even if other people think I’m wrong - I still have the right to assess what my limits are and act accordingly. And even though I will sometimes mistakenly think that I am unable to do something I am actually capable of, “I can’t” is still a vital part of my vocabulary.
There’s a difference between not wanting to do a thing, and reaching the conclusion that I’m probably not capable of doing the thing and that trying is hurting me.
I need to be able to acknowledge that I have limits in order to manage them correctly, and do what I can instead of pretending that enough willpower makes everything possible.
So does everyone else. In particular, people with disabilities who have been taught that we’re not allowed to take physical limitation seriously. But being disabled and physically limited isn’t a moral failing. It’s just a fact of life that sometimes needs to be accounted for.
I cannot tell you how many times in my early education I was told I am not allowed to say “I can’t” by special education teachers. At such a young age, that is dangerous. You are telling someone that they are not able to say “I can’t” to a variety of situations which can lead to very bad endings, and it is never the students fault.
One thing I remember clearly is one of my physical education teachers doing this. I have had joint problems my whole life (at 14, my knee joints were filled with micro-fractures, and that was not enough to get me out of PE), and it was never respected. One particular day, the teacher was putting harnesses on us to climb this indoor rope net. I KNEW I would not be able to manage it, as it requires a lot of work from your lower body. More importantly, your fucking knees.
I told my teacher “I can’t do this” and she gave me the same speech that anon gave. “You CAN do it, we can’t tell what’s going to happen. You’re not allowed to say you can’t.” And even when I fought it, even when I went to walk away, I was threatened with a failing grade for the day. And since all my special education (well, 97% of it told me I couldn’t say no), I ended up on this net.
And what happened?
I made it four feet up, my knee popped out of it’s socket, and I was taken down crying as it popped itself back in. As my joints did.
And my teacher said “See, you CAN. Even with pain you CAN, you just don’t want to.”
This landed me on crutches and in doctors offices for 2 weeks.
So yeah, I wish I would have had more teachers with the guts to tell me “You can say no and mean it”.
Fuck ableist teachers, get a new job.
This is what it does to people when you tell them “You’re not allowed to say I can’t.”.
And besides all this, if someone says “I don’t want to” and you force them to do it anyway - that’s no good either. O_o And most people who I know who have said “don’t say can’t” aren’t that good at respecting “won’t” either.
This attitude is extremely popular among nurses, LNAs, and physical therapists and my local hospital. And I’ve seen it do serious damage, both to me and to roommates I’ve had.
There’s a particular, really seriously awful, trick I’ve seen them pull on people multiple times. Including me once, at which point I refused to ever get in a position where they could do it to me again. (Which involved at one point firing my physical therapist.)
So here’s an example:
I was in really, really bad pain. Not the worst pain I’ve ever felt, but bad enough that I couldn’t make myself sit up. And I’m good at making myself do damn near anything. This turned out to be because my feeding tube hadn’t been inserted properly, but they treated me like I was just being a wuss and complaining too much. Like my roommate at the time would get them rushing into the room and giving her five different kinds of pain meds for every twinge, while I was actually frequently delirious from pain and they only grudgingly gave me pain meds, and only one kind. It was really frustrating.
But here’s what they pulled on me:
They wanted to get me to get up and transfer to a bedside commode to use the bathroom, rather than being rolled and using the bedpan. I don’t know about you, but if I’d been able to get up and use the commode, I would have: I hate bedpans. But they seemed to think I was being lazy. They said they had people with much worse surgery than me up and moving on the first day, and therefore that I was just being lazy. Nobody thought to check and see why I was still having excruciating pain so long after the tube was placed, when it shouldn’t be doing that. No, they just chose to doubt that the pain was really that serious. The pain had to get to a nine on the pain scale, after I got home, before anyone even checked the position of the tube, only to find that a piece of it was lodged in a really horrible position.
So what they did:
They badgered me and cajoled me and forced me until I finally put forth a phenomenal amount of effort to get up. This involved gradually rolling over and creeping along the bed, taking frequent breaks in which I was crying and screaming from pain. (It takes a lot of pain for me to do that.) It was painstaking and horrible.
Then, after getting some help and getting to the commode, they showered me with praise and told me “See, you can do it after all, you just have to try.” They told me how great I was for trying.
It was horrible.
Doing that to someone is a violation.
And it wasn’t a one-off thing, I saw them do that to a roommate with myasthenia gravis who was terrified of falling, forcing her to walk across the room and then showering her with praise at the end. She had some cognitive disabilities that made it hard for her to see that as manipulation, and they were able to talk her into endangering herself regularly.
If you’ve never been in that situation, maybe you don’t know what a huge violation it is.
But to push someone into doing something that is painful or dangerous to them, to badger and cajole and threaten and harass them until they do it, and then shower them with praise when they can do it after all… it gets into their heads. It tells them that they’re wrong about their abilities, that some nondisabled person has to show them their real potential. And it puts them in grave danger, a lot of the time, because it overrides their own ability to judge what is safe for them and what is not. It’s awful and it should never be done.
After the incident above, I fired my physical therapist and refused to get out of bed until the pain went away some. I was told that if I stayed in bed for even a week I’d get deconditioned and horrible things would happen. I told them I’d single-handedly brought myself back from months worth of deconditioning and that a week wouldn’t kill me. But I had to fight them every step of the way. It was worth it, though, because pushing through pain that bad is never a good thing.
So I shared a post on FB that was basically about body positive image for those of us who are trans and how fat positive blogs have been so helpful to me in accepting my own body.
I was taken to task not so much for the #FATSPO hashtag but because my post was favorable toward the fat positive…
What I usually try and remember and tell folks is the underpants rule: you are the boss of your own underpants (h/t to @danceswithfat), NO ONE ELSES. So if losing weight worked for her, fantastic! I’m glad it worked for her and helped her. The fact that you don’t subscribe to her model of body image is nothing against her or her choices. The fact that this model of body positivity works for you and others has nothing to do with her. It does have everything to do with YOUR health and happiness. If this idea of body positivity is tweaking her, then she might want to think about why it is. However, that’s her stuff to deal with.
Not sure if this is useful, but it’s what I got…:)
Boss of my underpants, that’s me! And by negotiation, I’m also boss of several other people’s underpants.
I struggle with fat positivity but I try to keep my baggage out of other people’s laps.
“The built-in gyroscopes steer your fake eyes to coincide with your real head’s position (for instance, looking up with a thoughtful expression when you tilt your head back), and a shirt-pocket camera tracks the faces of the people around you to maintain polite, piercing (fake) eye contact. No more taxing emotional labor for you—let your virtual eyes convey friendly charm and openness, while behind them you plot your world takeover.”—
“I think that the fundamental issue with climate change is that it’s a tragedy of the commons. It requires people to work together to achieve goals that anyone’s individual efforts will not be enough. So yeah, to many people that may suggest that the money and the well being and the status and profits they have so carefully accrued throughout their lives might need to be used to help other people. That’s a tough issue. For many people I don’t think that is a core value, but that is what climate change requires — for us all to work together for the solution because the problem is too big for any one of us to solve individually.”—Katharine Hayhoe, quoted in Science alone can’t save us, says famous climate scientist (gulp) | Grist (via dendroica)
My mom is psychiatric nurse. She works with adults and young adults. Figures, right? And you think she’d know all about dermatillomania, and ways to treat it? She didn’t. Not when I told her about it. She really didn’t fully understand how hard it is and how impossible it can be to stop.
Well, if you’re like me, you’ve never seen a doctor of any kind about this (I do have a psychiatrist but that’s for my depression). I am self-diagnosed. But even if you have seen a doc, do they know what they are talking about? Derma is so new in terms of being recognized as a disorder, and many aspects of it are not really “out in the open.” Therapy and things like that can be great, especially for just dealing with the emotional trauma that comes with this frustrating disorder. But if you are really looking for a way to STOP PICKING, listen up, because I know I for one have been approaching this all wrong.
My mom went to a seminar that basically taught about all of impulse-control/OCD disorders, skin picking being among them. There is a lot more than this but it’s late so here are the five main things she learned that I think will be most helpful to all of us.
DON’T do the count the days thing. I know, right? I have to apologize to diaryofaskinpicker for this one, because he already knew. I thought this was a good strategy. But it turns out, even if you manage to rack up a high number of consecutive “no-pick” days, when you relapse (and you will), the disappointment will trigger bad picking, and serious difficulty in regaining control of picking in the following days. You will fall back into the cycle of the “fail. try again. fail. try again.” I have experienced this first hand, and it was after I tried to build up days.
DO focus on it as a day by day, hour by hour, even second by second basis. In other words, focus on not picking TODAY/RIGHT NOW. Don’t even think about what happened last week, or yesterday, or even what will happen tomorrow. When you think about it, it’s highly logical: can you change the past or future? No. You can only control what you are doing right now.
DON’T simply try to eradicate your derma. Don’t think you can just stomp out the fire. It doesn’t work that way. Think about it. You know this. You can’t stop. Don’t try to just abolish it. It’s more complicated than that. Why else would it bother you when people tell you to “just stop?” You know it doesn’t work that way. Take a deep breath.
DO instead REPLACE this habit with something else. I will get back to you on examples of what you can do, because my mom said she was taught a bunch but will have to list them to me another time. But she made it clear that you literally CANNOT treat this disorder without this crucial idea. This is perhaps the most important step. You have to find a healthy habit .I know I have been obsessively flossing and that’s okay, but to be really effective it should be something really pleasurable for you. You should WANT to do it. If it can be done in the place where you most often pick, even better.
MINDFULNESS. We all know the feeling. You said you wouldn’t pick, then five minutes later you are looking in the mirror at a red, irritated face and tons of picked blemishes and pores. How did that happen? You weren’t even aware you were doing it. To change that, we will have to practice mindfulness. This will be challenging. Think Buddhist meditation. It will be difficult to master. But the whole idea is that you will notice your urges, be aware of your emotions, and let it all pass. More on this later as well.
Anyway, I hope this makes sense. I have to go to bed but I will post what I learn in the coming days! Spread the word! We can do this. We need to share the right methods and stop using the wrong ones if we want to get somewhere. I had no idea about most of this stuff!
Night my loves <3 you are beautiful.
Another thing I forgot to mention: STRESS! Reduce it. Find healthy ways to manage it. Number one thing to do for this? Get enough sleep. 8 hours every night. Go.
“If you have ever untangled a ball of string, you know that yanking and pulling only makes it worse. You need to very gently and patiently unravel the knots. Be gentle and patient with yourself as you untangle your own mental knots, and love yourself in the process. Willingness to let go of the old is the key.”—(via tumblrgymyoga)
“The problem is that you don’t just choose recovery. You have to keep choosing recovery, over and over and over again. You have to make that choice 5-6 times each day. You have to make that choice even when you really don’t want to. It’s not a single choice, and it’s not easy.”—Marya Hornbacher (via prairie-queen)
“Since the start of 2005, I’ve been keeping a daily calendar for picking. Each day has one line, for example:
“Mon Sep 19______________________” On the line I write one positive thing I did that day related to picking. I think this tool has been incredibly helpful. I also put a little star if I didn’t get stuck for an extended period of time (15 minutes or longer), and a star with a circle if I was pick/pull-free. Other stickers are great too…don’t underestimate the power of a reward sticker!”—Skin Picking Strategies | Self-Help | Articles | Resources | Trichotillomania Learning Center
I just mixed two tablespoons of cod liver oil and two drops of iodine with a shot of water and slammed it and it tasted like I’d accidentally gulped sea water or fresh kelp. Which, I gotta tell ya, is a strange and unexpected improvement over the taste of either of the two alone.
I swear, the amount of water I’ve wasted over the years from turning the shower on and then somehow getting sucked into picking before even getting in…it’s probably enough to supply clean water globally for a century or two.
*sigh* …the trance controls me.
Massive GPOY. The very act of taking off my clothes sends my fingers searching for abnormalities to pick.