Withdrawal: An Unexpected Drug Addiction

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I’ve been radio silent for several days because I’ve felt like hell, and I’ve been catching up on some Zzz’s and spending a little more time with my family.

I want to say that I know nothing about recreational drugs. I’ve went to precisely two parties in college where there were a few people standing outside smoking weed, and those few people didn’t include me. I didn’t even get drunk at any of the college parties that I went to except for the one time I became pretty tipsy after taking a big shot of peppermint schnapps, which I immediately regretted, not because of any convictions but because it set my esophagus on f i r e.

I only know that you can snort cocaine because of the term “booger sugar” (my husband is giggling like a 7th grader as he reads this). I once had a conversation with a friend about some of her friends who got slipped some sort of drug that was laced with something, and I said something to the effect of “Maybe it was laced with LCD.” I quickly remembered (5 minutes later) that it was LSD not LCD.

After stating all of that, you can guess that I’ve never done recreational drugs or even smoked a cigarette (I detest smoking).

However, when it comes to prescription drugs, I can rattle off things about Xanax, Valium, Ativan, anti-depressants, anti-convulsants, hypnotics, and so on. I’m privy to this knowledge because I’ve taken several medications from all of this classes at some point of another.

I’ve mentioned in a previous post that I was on a medication for several months before it stopped working, and I dropped into a dramatic depressive state. Well, in that last month, I was weaned off of that medication. I did it over the course of two weeks.

This med is called Effexor, and my psyche professional wanted me to come off of it (I was at the max dosage) because it was causing me not to sleep and not to even miss it. Of course, sleep deprivation always catches up to me, and the depression sneaks up from behind me and pulls me under.

After weaning off of the Effexor, I started having horrible physical reactions. My neck stiffened, I had unbearable headaches, nausea that made me throw up, and insane vertigo.

This is when I went to the doctor thinking I had a bad ear infection. I didn’t and was diagnosed with an inner ear inflammation due to allergies. Predisone was prescribed which sent me into a wild manic state followed by a quick and furious drop. It was truly the worst mood shift I’ve EVER had.

The vertigo persisted as did all of the other physical symptoms. My anxiety also shot through the roof because of this. Another doctors visit ended with a referral for an MRI. I didn’t go in for that because I didn’t want to spend the money.

My husband called my psyche practitioner because he was worried about me. She told him that it sounded like withdrawals from the Effexor. She sent in a prescription for the lowest dosage of it to reintroduce into my system.

I also realized that I had been taking 150mg more of one of my mood stabilizers that I was supposed to which also contributed to the horrific side effects.

After sorting out these issues, I’m starting to physically feel better and mentally blunted. My moods were highly unstable, but now they are way more even.

After dealing with all of these withdrawal symptoms, I have an even deeper compassion for those who go through DTs from stronger drugs. What I went through was minimal compared to what they must grow through, yet I felt like I was literally going to die some nights.

The one thing that I’ve been clinging to through the many downs that I’ve experienced over the last few weeks is the verse Psalm 56:3:

“When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” 

Repeating this over and over in my mind or aloud has slowed my heart rate, slowed the racing thoughts, and stopped the throbbing in my temples.

I one day further in my healing process.

Until next time, friends!

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Committed: My Stay in a Mental Health Facility

A nurse had me strip down to nothing. I was completely naked. Exposed.

Vulnerable.

you are not your illness

Trigger Warning: There is a bit of talk about suicidality in this post. If hearing about someone’s struggle with wanting to self-harm will trigger you, only read the last couple of paragraghs – or nothing at all.

After seven weeks of spiraling depression, I finally hit the bottom. Landing in a lightless pool of tears, I momentarily struggled to get to the surface, finally succumbing to the slow weightless gravity of the depths of that cold well.

Light started to glimmer on the stillness of the top.

A child’s sincere prayer was heard, and by the strength of the Almighty, I was brought out of the depths, and placed on the flourishing green grass surrounding that dank, stoney well.

I’ve fallen in that same well a few times before, each time being lifted out, not by my own strength, but by the strength placed in others by God Himself.

Two suicide attempts, countless hopeless hours wishing I could just drown, and one solid, peaceful plan to end my life; I finally decided to reach out for the right kind of help.

I was completely against being committed to a mental health facility for so long, but I had needed to be there more times than I have fingers.

After seven weeks of falling, crashing yet again into the same cold water, I cried out for the aid I truly needed.

Only sleeping two or three hours a night for two months has a horrific impact on your thinking.

I had had five good months. Five months of even moods, increased energy, and motivation.

Coming down from that high place made the fall even worse because I hadn’t had that many days without depression and anxiety in more than 10 years.

My focus became fuzzy. I would completely zone out at work. I began to forget things that were on my openly visible to-do list that I kept on my desk. Irritation stung more than ever before to the point I was having trouble being around people.

Finally, the exhaustion and inability to complete a thought caught up to me, and the cracking dam broke loose.

I picked up my kids from daycare with tears streaming down my face. I don’t cry in front of people, but they could not be stopped. Driving to a safe place, with my precious babies in the backseat, they were more than concerned as their mother wailed for relief.

My three almost four year old daughter said loudly from the backseat “Lord,  keep my mommy safe, and make her feel better.” That was the light that danced across the top of the deep.

My husband met me at this safe place. I had called my psychiatry office to talk to the doctor on call. I was hoping that it was my regular practitioner, but it wasn’t. The nurse on the other end said my husband had just called two minutes prior to me picking up my phone.

He’s the one who always makes the call for me because I’m either too upset or too ashamed.

This time I didn’t care. I needed help or I was not going to make it.

I kept telling my husband over and over,  “I need to go to the hospital. I need to go to the hospital.”

The doctor rang me back, and asked me a ton of questions.

Even though I told her that I was struggling with suicidality, she was most concerned with my sleeplessness. Most doctors try hard to keep their patients out of psyche wards because they can be brutally scary and often times unhelpful.

Ambien was prescribed, and I got a whopping three hours of sleep that night. I had a previously scheduled psyche appointment with my regular practitioner that week, so I was urged to vow to safety and make it to then.

Sitting in her office, she blatantly asked me if I was having self-harming thoughts. I learned a while ago to not lie about this.

“Yes.”

In the past, I had been prescribed either new or additional medications and placed under constant surveillance for about two weeks at home.

I was tired of putting my family in a situation where they had to baby sit me, so I said again: “I need to go to the hospital.”

“OK. I need you to not leave this office until your husband can come and take you. I’ll make the call to see when they can take you in.”

I was urged to choose a women’s facility close to my house that only housed eight beds. They could get me in the next morning. The nurse called me that night as I was waiting and asked me if I had a plan. (A plan for suicide that is)

After careful research, I had coldly calculated an incredibly detailed plan two years prior to this phone call. It’s the one I always go back to when I tip over into the dark, cold well of apathy.

I’ll never share it with anyone outside of a practitioner, so it isn’t outlined in this post at all, and never will be in any of my writing.

I will say that when I do hit the bottom, it is a very peaceful and satisfying process of thoughts because I feel like it would actually bring me relief.

Many say that suicide is selfish. It’s easy to be the judge when you’re on the outside and think you know everything.

While some people may want to commit suicide to throw blame, guilt, and revenge on those who cause them pain,  (Don’t get me started on my many, many thoughts about 13 Reasons Why), some people have the true belief that their existence is causing pain for those they love.

In the past, I blamed others for these thoughts as well as thinking the world would be a brighter place without my darkness. However, as I’ve aged, In those moments, my thoughts are not about what the world has done to me, it’s about what I’ve done to the world around me. Maybe it is slightly selfish in the fact that my thoughts centralize around me, but my intention is to better the lives of the ones I love the most.

“I’ve always felt like a burden to my family since I was a kid. I truly believe that my husband should’ve chose another wife who was full of joy and never would put him through the worry and hell that I’ve put him through. I believe that I will cause my kids more trauma throughout their life by being who I am than I would in ridding myself from their lives in one fell swoop while they are too young to really remember me. While I have great friends, none of them would be forever changed by my absence.”

These are the lies that swirl around the depths of my mind when I can’t see the light.

I can be greatly logical in my thinking, and after a few years of intermittent counseling, I can ground myself enough to know that when this happens, I must say something. Even if I can’t fully verbalize what it is I’m thinking, I can say to my husband “I’m not really OK,” and he knows that action needs to be taken.

This time, I was ready to take extreme action.

I packed my bag, kissed my husband goodbye at the locked door on the HOPE wing, and was shown to my room.

All of my personal belongings that I had packed were confiscated for inspection. No phone. No tablet. No contact with the outside world.

No strings, nothing with alcohol in it, no medications of any kind.

While I had my own private room, there was no shower curtain, no comfy bed dressings, and no sharp pencils.

After settling into my near empty room, I was submitted to a “skin check.”

A nurse had me strip down to nothing. I was completely naked. Exposed.

Vulnerable.

Every scar, bruise and discoloration were questioned and noted.

All of me was laid out before a stranger who didn’t trust me, yet wanted to help me.

Finally clothed and fetally curled up on my noisy bed, a different nurse peaked in and brought my lunch. I could eat in peace, but was urged to come out to the open room for dinner.

Dinner time came, and my clouded eyes stayed down as I sat down for my scrumptious hospital dinner (sarcasm for those who missed it). I didn’t know if the patients talked to one another, or if I was supposed to sit silently eating food off my plastic spork.

Around the table, the ladies started asking me what my name was and told me theirs. As usual, I didn’t feel like talking to strangers.

Group session was later on that night where we had to state positive things about ourselves, set positive goals for the night, and vow to safety.

Given my ineffective Ambien, I resigned to my bed for a mostly sleepless night. Surprisingly, I didn’t miss my phone at all. I missed having a clock to track my time.

The only clock was at the end of the hallway.

Each hour, I would peak my head out and see how much longer I had to stay in my room.

Each room had a door within a door that looked like something that would be down the through the looking glass in Alice in Wonderland. This trick door was cracked at night so the nurses could do their hourly checks without waking the “clients.”

I forgot that we weren’t referred to as patients.

The next day, I went through the group activities, sat through the clergy talk as he struggled to relate God’s word to our situation, and got to know the ladies a bit more.

During our group movement time, we banged on a drum to sound out our feelings to the group. Mine was “sad-mad.”

I had been there for over 24 hours and the psychiatrist hadn’t seen me. This infuriated me because I felt like they were discarding me and that I was unimportant. I was also sad because, ya know, depression.

We then went out into the hallway to throw around these foam balls while getting to know each other’s names. I really wanted to just sit still, but as we moved and giggled, I literally felt parts of my brain that had been inactive for a while, light up. It was a strange sensation.

My husband came for a visit, then it was dinner time and group session time all over again.

I did get to see the doctor after all, and was given a book and a new prescription which was supposed to help me sleep.

It didn’t, so I cracked open the book, and vigorously went through the first 50 pages completing the exercises along the way.

Having physical injuries in the past, I was no stranger to physical therapy. I finally came to the realization that my mind was in need of physical therapy if I was going to make strides toward healing.

Instead of taking it slow, I devoured the next 100 pages along with assignments and turned them into the doctor at the end of the day. I had told him the evening before that I wanted to go home as soon as possible. He just smiled and nodded, and I said, everyone says that, huh?”

“Yep.”

After turning in my assignments, he said “So, about going home early, I think we may be able to get you home on Monday. We have to get you some sleep first, though.”

I slept six hours that night, but not without getting to know the ladies a bit more.

Bipolar disorder, schizoaffective disorder, extreme general anxiety disorder, major depressive disorder, alcoholism – labels we all had prescribed to us.

However, I got to know them by their first names, careers, family situations, and personalities.

We joked around about being in a mental health facility – some being repeat offenders. We colored, talked about our medications, upcoming vacations, and favorite restaurants.

I got to peel back yet another layer of stigma that had been ingrained in me about mental illness, and see each woman as living, breathing human beings with real lives, real thoughts, and real struggles.

Being next door to the geriatric mental health wing, we could hear the screams and disruptions from patients fighting off delusions and hallucinations, and felt a little fear, but mostly sadness because we knew how real that person’s thoughts were to them.

We all formed a bit of a bond, unlike most patient client groups that grace the HOPE wing; at least that is what we were told.

We watched TV together, told funny stories about our lives, and encouraged each other through our darkest thoughts.

I tear up thinking about these women because I would probably never befriend them in my normal life, but in our little safe corner of the world, they each impacted my life because they made me realize that I’m not alone and not defined by my illness but rather a someone who has an illness.

I don’t go up to people and say: “I’m Fatima, and I’m Bipolar.”

I am not defined by an illness. You are not defined by an illness.

You are not cancer, you are not hyper-tension, you are not diabetes, you are not ADHD, you are not dyslexic -No. You may deal with these things, and God help you if you do, but you find your truth and you lay it out there. You find what and who you truly are and you own it -you declare it.

 I am Fatima. I am a wife, mother, daughter, sister, friend, and creatively old soul, and I’m training my crippled mind to grow stronger as I deal with a disease called Bipolar Disorder that often gives me symptoms of overwhelming sadness, irritable anxiety, and panic attacks as well as rarely giving me symptoms of high energy and impulsivity. 

Even if all of these titles are stripped from me, and I’m left with nothing else in this world, I can cling to this truth – The Truth. I am a daughter of the Most High. I am seen. I am heard. I am ultimately healed, even if I only see it in eternity. I am protected, redeemed, free – I AM LOVED.

While I still have two or three more posts to finish my 30 post truth challenge, I have found so much healing and support through this journey.

I’ve been humbled by the outpouring of messages and comments that have been shared with me, and I have seen each one even if I haven’t responded yet. Thank you for seeing my journey of truth, and thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing pieces of your journey with me. I’m grateful for your honesty, and impressed by your bravery.

May the God of all peace, wisdom, and understanding surround your heart today and each day moving forward.

I’ll bring the coffee next time.

Until we meet again my friends,

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I Unconsciously Hurt Myself

but yet again, I don’t stop. I don’t know how.

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Somewhere between third and fourth grade I began twirling and lightly tugging on my hair.

While this might seem to be a cute behavior of a little girl, it’s not so cute when I still do it over 20 years later.

It doesn’t matter if my hair is long or short, if I’m in a highly stressful situation or just sitting and watching a movie, I’m most likely twirling my hair.

I use my left hand to grab a lock of hair from the lower left side of my head. I have a pattern of grabbing the hair between my pointer and third finger, lightly pulling it downward then twirling around in a circular pattern.

Even though I don’t necessarily think about it while I’m doing it, if I do happen to notice, I keep doing it because I like the way my hair feels between my fingers. I don’t pull on my hair to the point of hair loss, but with the near constant pulling motion accompanied by the twisting, it’s actually known as a condition called Trichotillomania.

There are many theories as to what causes this from severe anxiety to an obsessive-compulsive disorder of sorts. I haven’t discovered my reason yet.

If I’m not fiddling with my hair, then I am picking the cuticles off of my fingers. I either pick the cuticles off by pinching them off, by biting them off, or by rubbing them off with the fingers next to them. This is called Dermatophagia. I’ve also done this since I was a child.

I probably do this more than I twirl my hair, but I would say that the only time I’m not doing one of these things is when I’m doing something artistic that requires both of my hands or when I’m sleeping.

How do I harm myself?

As I mentioned before, I don’t actually pull my hair out like some people with this disorder, but after 20 years of doing this, I will often have tendinitis that flairs up in my elbow. In addition to that, when I stretch my left arm upward or out to the side, my shoulder gets a sharp pain because I’ve put a lot of wear on my rotator cuff by continually holding my forearm up and doing this pulling and twisting motion.

cuticle

Here is a picture of a freshly bleeding cuticle from the other day. You would think that this would stop me from messing with my finger, right?

Well, it doesn’t.

Not only do I often end up with swollen, peeling hang nails, and bleeding cuticles, I have callouses on a few of my fingers with the largest ones on my thumbs. The joints in my fingers and wrists get stiff or sore sometimes, but yet again, I don’t stop. I don’t know how.

Honestly I’ve never really brought it up to anybody. Over the years, I’ve had people mention it, but I always say “I don’t know why I do it.”

Most people don’t even notice it.

I’ve never sought out treatment for it because I never really thought it was that big of a deal until recently as I’ve become more educated about different mental illnesses and disorders. I know that these things are a Body-focused repetitive behavior which I only know a little bit about.

Truthfully, a part of me doesn’t want treatment for it because I like the way it feels and it is satisfying in some way, and I don’t know if I want to dig deeper into what that means.

Welp, that’s another little nugget of truth I’ve thrown out there for the world to see.

Thanks for walking with me on this journey!

If you do the same or have a similar behavior you do — Comment below! I would love to hear your story.

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Re-scripted : How Do I Edit My Thoughts About Myself

I have a degree in theatre arts. Among all of the things that I had to do, I most often had to either memorize lines or write them.

Somewhere throughout the years, because of life experience and a little biology, I have formulated this script that I deliver to myself when my anxiety is high and my depression is low. Even when I’m feeling OK, these lines circulate in like a steady fan blowing in the background.

“You’re never going to feel better.”

“You add no true value to anyone’s life.”

“Your kids are going to be traumatized by you.”

“Your husband deserves way better than you.”

“You are a burden.”

“You’re never good enough.”

“I’m sorry for being me.”

This is my script, and it is on recitation in my mind every day. It is so ingrained in my thoughts that it has become muscle memory; there is no straining to remember these lines.

Logically I know that these are all fallacies. Therefore, I have to edit my thoughts and re-script the monologue to say something that is true.

“You are working toward wellness. Better days are ahead.”

“Your family loves you for you, not for what you give them.”

“Your kids are going to see that you are a strong, persistent mom who will be there for them.”

“Your husband chose you and has loved you through your worst. He has told you he’s in it for life, and he’s not a liar.”

“You are not a burden. You work hard and pull your weight.”

“Perfection is a joy thief. Your best is enough.”

“God is finishing what He has started in you. There is no need to apologize for being you.”

After learning something one way, it is extremely difficult to try to learn something a better way. When I was in acting classes and we forgot our line, instead of breaking character and losing the moment, we’d simply have to say “line,” and we would be given our line.

My way of calling out for my line is by working on writing these down so that I can see them in places such as my car or my kitchen. I say them out loud, usually in my car or my kitchen, I have my rock of a husband who speaks these truths into my ear when my eyes are filled with tears, and I can only remember the lines from the old script.

What are some lies that you believe about yourself? How can you re-script them in a positive way? I’d love for you to share in the comment section below.

Break a leg with your re-write!

Until tomorrow, friends!

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How Do I Praise God When I’m Depressed?

Today is Palm Sunday, the day when Jesus rode into town on a donkey while people waved palm leaves shouting “HOSANNA,” which is an expression of praise similar to saying “hallelujah!.” It got me to thinking about how I was a worship leader for nearly a decade at a few different churches across the western portion of North Carolina. Because of this, I know what it is like to have to get up in front of people and praise God even when the night before, I was balled up like a fist on the floor, beyond tears, moaning from a place of complete despair, repeating these words to God: “Help me!”

I know what it is like to get up in front of people, encourage them to draw close to God, even though I felt like He was more than a million miles away

I know what it is like to have to run to my car after a set because the anxiety of it all came crashing down on me like a heavy cymbal, and I didn’t want anyone to see me have a panic attack.

More times than I can count, did I “lead worship,” when truly all I was doing was playing an instrument, singing songs, and putting on a half-hearted performance.

However, through all of that, I have learned a lot about how to get myself to a place where I can worship God, even when I’m at my lowest.

“God is spirit, and those who worship him must worship in spirit and truth.” (John 4:24, ESV)

Every good worship leader has quoted this during their time of worship at some point, but what does it mean?

“Spirit” in Greek (pneuma) and Hebrew(ruach) both mean breath, wind.

Our spirit is the life within our bodies. The Holy Spirit is the breath of God that dwells within us to lead us, comfort us, teach us, and love us. The Holy Spirit is alive in us.

“If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ Jesus from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit who dwells in you.” (Romans 8:21, ESV)

So if the Spirit is the life within us, we are to worship the Lord with our life by allowing the Holy Spirit to manifest and grow within us which is made evident by the fruits of the Spirit.

But what if our mental state has left feeling like we can’t worship?

Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words. (Romans 8:26, ESV)

THE SPIRIT INTERCEDES ON OUR BEHALF. What an incredible thought. When we can’t pray for ourselves, when we can’t put into words our thought processes, when we are balled up like a fist on the floor, gasping for air, barely able to say words between the gut-wrenching moans that only come from the deepest parts of our being, the Spirit of God mediates on our behalf. He steps in and takes over.

Wow.

We’re supposed to worship God in truth as well.

Part of this is being honest with God. He knows everything about how we’re feeling, but He wants us to own up to it. I’ve learned from counseling that there is profound healing when you hear yourself say something that you believe. Admit your weakness. Ask for His help. Wait patiently.

Another part of this is remembering the truths about God.

  • God is holy
  • God is sovereign
  • God does not change
  • God is love
  • God is good
  • God is merciful
  • God is faithful
  • God is gracious
  • God is all-knowing, all-powerful, and all over the place

Worship has nothing to do with the songs you sing at church on a Sunday morning. That is a great way to offer up praise since songs can say what the mouth has a hard time articulating. Worshiping with other people is encouraging and vibrant.

However, if we’re not worship God with our life by allowing His life to be present within us; if we’re not honest with where we are and vulnerable with God; if we forget who He is, what He has done, and what He said He will do, it’s just noise.

Admit to Him that you need help worshiping Him. Remember who He is. Allow his light to shine into your darkness.

These things are a great reminder to me, especially during this week where we can’t help but remember what the Lord has done for us through Jesus.

I hope you had a good palm Sunday, and that you have a good Monday.

A Sunday well spent brings a week of content – or something like that.

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House Divided : Growing Up in a Broken Home

My kids can spot things that I easily miss. As soon as we get into a store, my son can point out a renegade balloon that is tucked up in some rafter that I would have never noticed.

My daughter can find Elsa or Anna on anything, even if they are only an inch tall.

Growing with my kids has reminded me of how keen a kid’s senses are. I firmly believe that kids have a sharp intuition to discern a person’s character embedded in them as a defense mechanism.

At least that is how I was as a kid.

I didn’t like J.C. (this definitely does NOT stand for Jesus Christ). Looking back, he was like a snake in the grass, seductively slithering his way into our house.

He began spending more and more time with my dad, which I thought was odd. My dad had few friends, and they were usually guys that he worked with.

J.C. constricted our family time by showing up in the evenings, and not leaving until after I had gone to bed.

We had a teal leather sectional couch that I took many naps on. My parents sat across from while I was sitting on it one evening.

“We’re getting separated. Daddy will be moving out.”

The leather stuck to my legs as I slid out of my seat, crying hysterically.

I was almost six.

My dad had decided to leave my mom for J.C. or something like that. He had lived in torment his entire life, knowing that he was different and battling things that I will never understand. His decision to liberate himself destroyed my family.

He took about a year to go out and discover his new found life before steadily coming back into mine. Fortunately, J.C. was thrown out of the picture.

There is a lot that I don’t remember about that time, but I do remember being overwhelmed with sadness, writing in my school journal everyday “My parent’s are getting divorced,”and having excruciating stomach pains everyday.

I was asked who I wanted to live with, and my reply was with my Granny. How could a six year old be asked to choose between her mother or father.

From what I was told, I blamed my mom for my dad leaving. I don’t remember that part. I just remember my mom always being there. Even in her immense sadness, she was still there.

I grew up spending a week with my mom then a week with my dad. This was always the arrangement, and it worked for us. I always joke about how good I am at packing a bag because I lived out of a suitcase for the majority of my childhood.

My dad finally settled into a relationship with a good man who was kind to me, and he lived with us for many years.

Growing up with a gay dad in the 90’s wasn’t easy. Dad told me that I had to keep it a secret, and I did, even to the point of causing me great duress.

So there we were. A single mom who worked all the time to make ends meet, and a gay dad. We loved each other, and eventually fell into a routine that was comfortable.

Half of you reading this probably came from a broken home, but do you know the statistics that are attached to us?

  • Children in repeat divorces are generally less pleasant to be around.
  • Teenage children of divorce are three times more likely to need psychological help within a given year.
  • Children from divorced homes have more psychological problems, than children from which one of the parents has died. (I’ve dealt with both)
  • Between children of divorced parents there are relatively more cases of injury, asthma, headaches and speech defects than among children whose parents have remained married.
  • Children of divorced parents are fifty percent more likely to develop health problems than children in two parent families.
  • Children that are living with both biological parents are 20 to 35 percent physically healthier than children from broken homes.
  • In 1991 a study was done of children from which the parents were divorced six years earlier. The study found that even after all that time, these children tended to be lonely, unhappy, anxious and insecure.

  • Children divorce statistics indicate that children of divorced parents are four times more likely to report relational problems with peers and friends than children whose parents have kept their marriages intact.
  • (Adult) children of divorce are almost twice as likely to attempt suicide than children from normal homes.

These stats are a bit dated, but it is hard finding new stats on the Google.

I never thought that my parent’s divorce had anything to do with my depression and anxiety. It never occurred to me until I heard a pastor spitting out a bunch of stats like the ones I listed above. It was like a light bulb went off in my head.

Honestly, I don’t think that my parents’ divorce is the sole reason that I’ve dealt with a lifetime of mental illness, but it is a part of my story, my truth, and a puzzle piece in my story of healing and recovery.

Divorce isn’t going to destroy your kids, but it is important to learn how to help your kids navigate through it as well as getting help for yourself. You can go through it on your own, but it’s so much better to go through it with some help.

I’ve got my fuzzy socks pulled up, and I’m settling down under my soft comforter for the night. I hope you are able to rest easy and have sweet dreams!

Until tomorrow,

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Grace Upon Grace

The depression has been big today and the guilt even bigger.

I cannot form meaningful sentences. I cannot write anything that is border line profound. I cannot push my mind to stretch in that way today.

So, I leave you with this. In the mess that is whirling around in my mind, I hear this being whispered.

GraceuponGrace