I’m tired. My sleep is fucked, which means at least I’m not sick. My sinuses are still all over the map, and I’m squarely blaming that on the weather. It’s been 50 to 89 and everywhere in between. I’m loving the former, but not the latter, and my body really doesn’t like the rapid changes. I’ve also become even more intolerant of heat, and my love of the cold is gradually diminishing as well. I used to be able to keep the car windows open until it was well in the sub-zero temps. Now, I close it when it’s zero.
I have said that the problem with getting old isn’t that I can’t do what I used to (though that is starting to be a problem), but that it takes much longer for me to recover. I used to be able to get by on four hours of sleep a night (barely); I could go out until the wee hours of the night and sleep it off the next day. Now, I could go out all night, but it would take a few days to recover.
I also have to admit that my depression is back and not going away any time soon. It’s low key, and it’s not paralyzing the way it has been in the past, but it definitely permeates my mood. There’s an ever-present feeling of ‘why bother’, which seeps into everything. It’s frustrating as hell, and I know the only thing I can do about it is to go to therapy.
I do Not want to go to therapy. Not because I think it’s worthless; I don’t. I am a big proponent of therapy, and I have been in it many times in my life. I have learned a lot from therapy, and I know I could learn more. However, the thought of finding a new therapist makes me want to curl up in a ball and never get up.
Here’s what I know. I don’t want a CBT therapist. I might want a DBT therapist. I want someone who is cognizant of minority issues, especially race. More specifically, I want someone who realizes that race goes beyond black and white.
Side Note: I am very pleased that there are more movies with Asian people starring in them, but for the love of god, could the next one NOT be a romcom? I understand why that’s the go-to for Asian movies–actually, I don’t. I mean, I guess it’s better than action-based movies (read, martial arts), but can’t we have a serious drama with Asian people in it? And, I get it that seeing Asian people being sexual with each other is a positive, but I fucking hate romcoms. I do approve of the resurgence in Keanu’s career, however. Both in a new movie and a new video game at the same time. Good on him!
Anyway, I also need a therapist who can call me out on my shit. One of my issues is that I am extremely intelligent, and I have a pretty high EQ as well. I know the psych jargon, and I think of things in a very labyrinth-like way. I do not take kindly to ignorance, and I lose respect for someone who tries to pull the wool over my eyes. For example, I had a substitute doctor (when my doc was having a baby. She’s resigning from my network this week, unfortunately), and she mentioned my smoking. I smoke a cigarette or two a day, and she told me that there was no difference between smoking a cigarette a day and a pack a day. I did not say anything because she was not my actual doctor, but the look I gave her.
What I wanted to say: Either you are stupid, or you think I am. Neither is a good look on you. Look. I understand that the gen pop can’t be trusted with information. My old doctor, whom I loved until she got caught up in the insurance bullshit and started pushing BMI on me even though she told me it was bullshit, explained it to me thusly. We were talking about my smoking habit, and she said it wasn’t that big a deal. I asked her why I had never heard that from a doctor before, and she said, “If we tell people they can smoke one cigarette a day, they’ll take it to mean they can smoke a pack a day.” I conceded her point, and I truly do understand.
However. There is a difference between telling people not to smoke (which is good advice in general) and telling them that smoking one cigarette a day was just as bad as smoking a pack a day. Come the fuck on. I do not like lies, and I do not like people condescending to me. This doctor did both, and she did it with a stern look on her face. She also did prescribed the wrong thing for the dermatology issue I was experiencing, but that’s another post for another day.
I need a therapist who will call me on my shit and who won’t lie to make a point. The latter is actually more important than the former because I grew up with unreliable narrators my whole life. And narcissism.
Side Note II: I tweeted that I have a really good sociopath meter. I can sniff ’em out 98% of the time. The other 2%, however, well, here’s the tweet:
I have a very good sociopath meter. I can sniff them out 98% of the time. That means the other 2% of the time, I am really, really, REALLY wrong.
— Minna Hong (@asiangrrlMN) June 9, 2019
It’s because I relax my scanner after I make the initial assessment because I’m so good at it. If someone slips through the initial screen, it takes me an embarrassingly long time to suss it out.
Anyway. I grew up constantly doubting my own experiences because they were so strenuously denied by those around me. Or minimized. Or I was told I *shouldn’t* feel the way I did. Or that I didn’t feel the way I did. As a result, I have a squishy personality that I’ve had to shore up over the years.
I’ll let you in on a secret. People think I’m really empathetic, and I am to a certain extent. It’s partly because I absorb all the negative emotions around me. It was really bad when I was younger–to the point where it was physically painful for me to walk in a crowd. In my late twenties, my mother convinced me to go to Ren Fest with her. I lasted half an hour before I told her I had to leave. I was in a panic, and I was hyperventilating. At least in my mind I was. I felt trapped, and my brain threw me into a really dark place.
Over the years, I’ve learned how to erect shields, so the feeling is much less these days. It’s still there, however, and when I’m really tired, it’s painful. I’d liken it to having a trick knee that throbs when it’s raining. It’s not something I have to consciously deal with most of the time, but the times I *do* have to deal with it are when I’m least capable.
One reason I have a visceral negative reaction to CBT is because, as I said in an earlier post, I realized it feels like a whole lot of gaslighting. “No, you don’t really feel that.” “That’s a faulty assumption.” “Your feelings are not real.” Yeah, no. I grew up with that shit, and I don’t think it would be healthy for me to experience it in therapy. In addition, some assumptions aren’t faulty. Such as, I will experience discrimination as a fat, bisexual, old Asian woman.
I know part of my issue with finding another therapist is my depression getting in my way. One of my favorite parts of depression, by the way. The way it impedes my ability to get help for my depression. It’s seems especially cruel, but it’s just a fact of life.
Another thing I’ve been considering lately is whether I have ADD. Not ADHD because I’m definitely not H, but ADD. I know it’s much less diagnosed in women than in men, but I’m having a hard time finding the actual symptoms in women. I can find plenty of articles about the fact that women are under-diagnosed and the effects ADD has on women, but not the actual symptoms. I found one, finally, and I fit about half to three-fourths of the symptoms.
That’s another problem. I am an amalgamation of many different syndromes/disorders. I have OCD traits. I have BPD traits. I have ED issues. I have anxiety issues. I have depression issues. I have PTSD. Now, I think I might have ADD issues. None of them have actually been diagnosed, but they’re all there. It’s really hard to treat co-morbidity, especially when one issue conflicts with another. Oh, I also have thyroid issues, and that’s been medically diagnosed/treated.
Finally, we were talking about caffeine in taiji on Saturday. The benefits and the negatives. I gave up caffeine a year ago, and now in retrospect, I’m not sure I needed to do that. I haven’t given it up totally, by the way. I have one or two cups of caffeinated tea a week, and I use generic Excedrin Migraine a few times a week (which has caffeine), and I eat dark chocolate. Still. That’s much less than 400 milligrams a day. There is conflicting information about the benefits and the negatives of caffeine, so I may just slowly start adding it back and seeing what works for me. Not pop, though, because that’s bad in different ways.
I know I have a lot of work to do on myself; I just can’t summon the wherewithal to do it.