GOODBYE TO ALL, ESP. YOU x

My creative inspiration (blogging-wise has dried up). Creativity is not a predictable resource. While some manage to max out creativity and produce creative output prolifically, almost as one of their personality traits, sometimes the well just dries up, the brain cells cease to fire, and the creativity shrivels like a air dried prune [with extra wrinkles].

I have blogged from February 2015 to now, but not all on the summer starts to shine blog. I have blogged prolifically and cathartically and therapeutically, and seen myself through a myriad of mental health variation in functioning levels, from crawling on the floor wanting to die level, to high functioning ‘I’m totally in control of my shit’ level.

I’m burned out, not of life in general, but when it comes to blogging and sharing and producing output for people to read and respond to. My goal was to get to 1000 followers by the end of this year, and my follower list stands at a healthy 815 people, plus the Facebook peeps.

But does chasing likes and comments and shares really help with my therapeutic process of recovery/life with mental health conditions? Yes, and no, but the no is beginning, on balance, to become larger than the yes, which leads me to wonder why I am doing this.

I know from reading the blogs of other bloggers that many of us will reach a point of disillusionment at some stage. I know I’m not alone in feeling this, as many of my blog friends are at this point right now. Maybe it is partly the emotional contagion effect of that, making me reconsider what I devote my time and energy into and wonder whether changes may need to be made.

But I think I am an independent enough thinker to also feel secure that this disillusionment is mainly originating from deep within. It is maybe a reflection of the stage of life I am at, crucial internal mental transitions I am going through, and where I know I want to be headed in the future.

Summer starts to shine has taken me closer to where I want to be. More insightful, more self-aware, more practised at communicating my ideas to a diverse virtual audience, more authentic, more known about, less invisible. But in turn, summer starts to shine has left me more vulnerable, more exposed, more confused, more dominated by an inner state of unrest, and ultimately feeling like I am going round in most prettiest but also most useless of circles.

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I cannot blog just because there is an expectation that I will and always will, to please the people who enjoy reading this blog. Likewise I shouldn’t stop blogging because there are select people who don’t approve or like what I create here. Blogging is for an audience, but it has to have self-benefit for the author and give satisfaction, otherwise you are just working as an unpaid writer to entertain, amuse, or educate others.

Maybe this is the depressed mood talking. Maybe this is a phase. Maybe this is temporary and will pass, but right now, I think the best way summer can shine is to stop blogging.

There is nowhere I prefer to be than behind a keyboard, writing, expressing, communicating, but I want to make the move to professional writing. I want to write for a purpose that is more than ‘summer just messily splurges her thoughts, feelings and experiences on her blog stream-of-consciousness-then feels empty and unsatisfied’.

Lately I have done more writing projects for organisations that I admire and respect, that have created more tangible and real positive outcomes. That is what writing is about for me. Making a difference. Changing and improving things. Raising standards. Influencing attitudes. Explaining things in a way that makes sense to the intended audience. I think I have tasted another type of writing, and blogging (stream-of-consciousness and spontaneously) just seems a tad lack lustre in comparison.

My hubby thoughtfully suggested I try a different way of blogging….planned posting, but it just doesn’t fit with my internally and instinctively as being the right thing for this blog. I have thought of not only stopping writing new material, but deleting my blog entirely and abandoning the concept of mental health blogging completely. He says I shouldn’t, and what a waste that would be, but I just feel ambivalent right now.

I used to love blogging, and I definitely still LOVE writing- it’s my best thing, but I don’t love blogging on summer starts to shine quite like I used to.

I question how much of this is depression/mood based and symptomatic of anhedonia (the clinical lack of pleasure in things that once gave masses of pleasure found in those people who are depressed). But I also like to listen to gut instincts, and my instincts tell me that blogging is wrong, and it is writing I should be doing.

I want to build up a body of written work that I am proud of. My blog posts that I knock out (in half an hour usually) don’t give me the same sense of pride as a writer as the the serious and purposeful writing I do. I have a notebook full of ideas, but blogging keeps me of the scent, and those projects get sidelined because I’ll feel a build up of pressure that I haven’t published anything on summer shines.

It is becoming an albatross, rather than a virtual vehicle for strengthening my once frail and broken wings.

My heart isn’t in this. My heart hurts. I feel alone and exposed and vulnerable. The things that used to matter don’t, and I’m noticing there are new things in my life that are coming along and mattering more.

Blogging so regularly has taught me a lot about writing, and even more about people, and how they may respond. None of these lessons, however painful to tolerate at times, are wasted.

I have to go within, and go with what fits for me. Maybe summer cannot shine if I continue to blog.

I know I have decisions to make, but they are not decisions to be taken lightly. I have invested a huge amount of myself into this blog, so quitting is not something to be done lightly, without a certain degree of sadness, disappointment, and even mourning (if that isn’t too strong a word).

I am grieving for lots of things right now, things which I don’t want to go into publically. I am shutting down internally, closing for business, whether this is temporary I’m not sure, but I’m definitely sure that the status quo isn’t quite working out.

I really value the blog friends I have made, and I want to stay in touch with you, off the blog, if you want to. My email address is summerstartstoshine@yahoo.com if you want to contact me that way. If I give up on blogging, please know I am not giving up on you. I am protecting me, but I still care about you xxx

Here is my personal list of the bloggers who I have really really valued through my time as a blogger. This list is off-the-top-of-my-head, written in one go, as is all my blogging here, so please forgive me if you’ve not made it to this list. I have dissociative amnesia as a symptom of my trauma, so sometimes my memories are not all accessible, depending on my current dissociative state. You are on this list because you are the bloggers that even if I stop blogging, I won’t forget, for various reasons. In no particular order……

Buffy Devane, Gina (singledust), Alexis (untangled), Brenda, Athina (courage coaching), Raquel (recovery to wellness), Paul (paul e bailey’s world), Claire (red balloons) Rayne (journey toward healing) Paul (mindfump), SDC (the river runners), Twinkle toes 79, Liz (my wellbeing and learning journey) Manuel (emotionsoflife2016), Anaida, Karl (in a dark wood), Anna (the daily annagram), Liza (lizalizaskiesaregrey) Esther, bethanyK (not my secret), beauty beyond bones, Ms SG41, Dweed (daisy on the willows) no face woman, she ra (motherhood made me do it), a broken blue sky, Barney (out of the bog and the myre) me time online, belleUnrue, anxious writer, Eddaz, manyofus1980, Sylvan (out of the dark), secret keeper, Anne J, Tenacity T. Emerging from the dark night, the original phoenix, Guernsey Jason, 1-wise woman, mr daffy duck, Simon, Defavereux Fraser, Art (advanced research technology), Alex (journey to euphoria), Daleom, Helena, Lisa, Sarah, Zig et al.

Goodbye to all

summerSHINES©

 

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DINNER PARTY OF ME

I appear to have lost my writing mojo a bit lately…at least on the blogosphere. I am writing plenty, but it’s for real-life, non-cyber stuff. My volunteering life behind the scenes is BUSY, and for that I am very grateful at this moment, as it is successfully keeping my post-traumatised feet planted securely in the present.

I type this post slightly tipsy on Cava, feeling very very tired. I can’t wholly make sense of what life has been about lately. It’s all so HUGE in it’s hugeness, and unsettling. It’s been emotional and unsettled and tumultuous, but I’ve learned lots and I’m still standing and starting to  polish off the smudge that had been dulling my shine.

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All weekend I’ve been getting my head in the game for the charity fundraising event that I’m organising. I have support from various places, which I so appreciate, but it has largely been an individual process. This event is my baby, my thing, my personal contribution to my community. It is my chance to put something back in, when once all I was doing was taking.

I don’t feel guilty for taking when I was very poorly. I don’t feel guilty for taking the support that was offered. I also don’t feel guilty for demanding even more from people than was even offered at times. My very survival was at stake, so taking the help from the tablets, the doctors, the nurses, the support workers, the psychologists- that all had to happen. Still sometimes I need that scaffolding of support around me to keep me whole and safe and in one piece. Feeling despondent about that is both natural, but also, I recognise, a complete and utter waste of energy. What use does guilt serve? Apart from creating secondary suffering on top of the suffering you are already partaking in.

I try not to indulge in guilt these days, and champion action instead. As long as I am taking positive actions, the secondary layer of suffering, namely guilt can ‘do one’, and jog on as far as I’m concerned. Actions are the counterpoint to guilt. Apologies and reparations need not be ruminated too excessively on. Just apologise, learn those lessons, and move on…quickly.

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I feel like I’ve moved on bloody well actually. I am not in crisis. I am not upset as I was. I am stabilising and regaining my strength and feeling more and more inner peace again. I am remaining in healthy adult mode without regressions or overpowering dissociative spells. The suicidal feelings are leaving me the hell alone, same with the urges to hurt myself in ways I find strangely therapeutic. All in control. All OK. All good, which is good :)

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I’ve been introspecting a great deal lately about the dissociative aspects of my personality- the multiple parts of me, and what that means for the goals of treatment and my therapeutic journey still ahead. These are big issues (if you are me). But you reading this are ‘you’, and you may think my big issues are small issues. You may not even understand what dissociation is, or dissociative identities, or multiplicity, and because of the cava I’m too tired to explain right now. I’ll leave you in the capable hands of the search engine Google for those definitions.

But this has got me thinking, how crap it is to have a life, and a mental health disorder/life story/traumatic jigsaw puzzle that is SO complicated that I’m too tired to even attempt to explain it in words on the internet (with or without cava). It is tough to have a set of psychological symptoms that are so hard for anyone, let alone a stranger on the internet to get your head around without a dictionary, and preferably also a degree. It is hard because people don’t get it, and even when you try and explain it, it is still not always obvious whether or not they’ve ‘got it’. Anything that is unusual is scary, and anything that is hard to explain is something people struggle to even believe is true in some cases.

Time for some big conversations with my psychologist later this week. I’m going to thrash some issues out with her honestly (in the nicest possible way), because every so often in therapy I believe there needs to be some joint soul searching as to where the hell we are going with all this. I am having long-term therapy. An end point to all this is unspecified. I know the therapy is not unlimited in amount, but I also know she isn’t going to be hurrying me out the door in the next few weeks, so there is still time to make a substantial impact and take the therapy along new pathways.

I know she is the professional. But I also have confidence in my own instincts and self- awareness as an educated insightful patient. I can think critically and originally and independently. I don’t need to be guided on everything, and never will I accept any unquestioned psychological spoon feeding. I will take guidance where guidance improves me, and I will listen to feedback, but I will also stay firm in my belief that therapy is not something done to us, it is something that is two-way, reciprocal, and will work best if both parties communicate honestly and transparently at all times.

That is how I approach life generally, with transparency. I ponder what the truth is, or rather what my truth is, and I express it, in the most simple straightforward way possible. I don’t pussy foot. I don’t remain uncertain for very long. I am decisive and constantly moving. My constant emotion translates to constant energy-in-motion.

Therapy must evolve, just as must people. Stagnancy is the worst feeling ever to me. As is indecision, lack of passion, numbness, emptiness. Therapy can become empty at times…or maybe I might be simply mistaking that emptiness for security, which in itself is alien to borderline EUPD/always stressed PTSD me.

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I need some than safety and stabilisation in therapy. I need exploration, and not just the interpersonal stuff that we’ve already talked though till I’m blue in the face and she is yawning. I need to learn about my multiplicity. I need to revisit all that. My dissociative nature and my fragmented identity is EVERYTHING to me right now.

I want to learn the parts of me and who exactly knows the other parts (co-consciousness) and who communicates with who and what functions those individual but separately functioning aspects of me are there to serve in this spaghetti sauce mess of a person.

Self-examination is needed, and I need my guide to help me, and really delve deep into the muddy mess so we can work out what is salvageable, what bits work, and what bits I just don’t want to entertain in the unruly dinner party of me anymore.

Too many cooks spoil the broth, and personality ingredients, not yet specified, make it fucking hard to follow any recipe.

Sack the waiter, go easy on the salt and seasoning, turn down the infernal noise in the dining room, and let me just work this out- just you and me. Help me to work out how this works. Then, just maybe, I might find some peace. I’m starting to regain it, but I need to get this dinner party of unruly guests under control. I need to get my psychologist on board to help me do that-she is my missing ingredient. I’ve missed her. I’ve needed her. She hasn’t been here. She will be there again- I possess a basic grasp of object constancy, even if it’s just by the very tips of my finger tips. Therapists ARE allowed to take holidays in summer! I do forgive her. I am ready for therapy this week though-that’s for sure.

summerSHINES©

PS. I haven’t proof read this before publishing. I’m too tired and too tipsy tonight. Hopefully it makes sense ;)

 

 

 

 

PEACEFUL SOLE

At last. A happy blog topic!! party poppers

This post is a lot more about footwear than mental health, although don’t worry, this blog hasn’t morphed into a vacuous fashionista blog- the mental health link is still very much there. For a welcome change, this post empathises some of the good stuff only good stuff that mental illness can bring into your life, namely the way it gives you an excuse to buy new shoes.

Anyone who knows me will know I am most at home [footwear wise] in wellies or trainers (and not even your trendy hunters or converse), and I’m also very partial to the epitome of laid back cool- the flip-flop. That reflects my informality, my lack of ability to be arsed about following trends, my desire for people to take me as I am- what you see is what you get, and also the fact I’m WAY TOO TALL AND UNGAINLY TO WALK IN HIGH HEELS :D

My estrangement from high heels happened when I became pregnant for the first time. Carrying that extra baby weight, rocking an altered centre of gravity and things like not being able to see my feet when standing, slash disturbingly swollen ankles, made heel wearing treacherous and not for the faint hearted. I officially have not stepped into a heel since that very last trimester of pregnancy day, and have sachayed around the north of England in un-cool flats ever since.

I am 6 ft tall, so heels are an option, but by no means a necessity. Men appear to be scared of me in heels, presumably as I match their stature, and women appear to be very uncomfortable with me towering over them, (judging by the vile looks of derision I get), so because I don’t want to scare or overpower people, I stay on terra firma, at the very height mother nature intended me to be. 6 foot off the ground. That is high enough I hypothesise for most occasions.

Well it usually is anyways, but sometimes life events come along that make you scrap and disregard your usual rules of living, in favour of the heady thrill of doing something a tiny bit different to what you normally do.

Next month, on a date (unnamed) in a location (unnamed, but hint- would cost £400 to purchase on a monopoly board) I shall be chucking out my usual flip, flop and flats, in favour of foot stilts (aka. heels).

Some occasions DEMAND heels, and this is surely one of them. This social situation demands a slick and sassy dress code and INCREASED HEIGHT.

I am doing a big speech, the biggest and most important speech of my life thus far. How this links with mental health is that the speech is on behalf of the biggest and best mental health charity in England and Wales- MIND.

I am a media volunteer for them, and this is an important gig which really matters, for both them and for me….one that I am immensely flattered to be asked to do.

I will be challenging my social anxiety more than it has ever been challenged before, and I will be doing something immensely nerve wrackingly scary as speaking, in public, with a microphone, to a big crowd, in a big room, in a big city. gulp

I can’t say any more than that publically, but to say I am excited about this event has the word “UNDERSTATEMENT” printed all over it. I am not too nervous [yet], I am just excited and thrilled to be given this opportunity, but interestingly considering the gravitas of the situation, most people’s first question when I tell them about this is not ‘what will you say’, but ‘what will you WEAR‘?! And to be honest, I don’t blame them, because that is what I feel most nervous about myself!…..[this Northerner not looking out of place in a swanky hotel at a prestigious address in central London]. Which is why shopping is a must- at least for the purchasing of heels and bling.

If I’m going to address a room about a topic I’m as passionate about as mental health, I want to feel comfortable, and that my outards successfully match my innards. I want the passion to show through on the outside, and to put it bluntly, I don’t want to stand behind the lecturn feeling like a tit.

A key advantage of the rural/coastal area where I live is that I don’t have to care what I wear when I go out. I put the bins out in my PJs and dressing gown, I will often go out to walk the dogs sans bra, and black leggings and a Primark vest are absolutely appropriate for ANY OCCASION; cagoules are positively ENCOURAGED (cause of the rain), fleeces are deemed fully ACCEPTABLE (cause of the arctic coastal breeze that blows in from the north sea) and shell suits NEVER went out of fashion.

On this occasion though, I want to raise my game and show Southerners that rural dwelling Northerners can actually look the business.

I know in my heart of hearts that no-one there probably does give a fuck what I wear and won’t be judging me on that basis, but I want to feel comfortable in myself so the search for the outfit begins TODAY. You heard it here first :)

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summerSHINES©

**Post-publishing note.

I did go shopping. I did brave the over-sized and packed out shopping centre that is bad for my PTSD. I did feel near to tears as I tried on shoe after shoe, all of which either didn’t fit (like Cinderella) or looked shit (I blame the designers) but in the end I DID get fixed up, in TESCOS of all places! It was a last ditch attempt on to salvage my heel shopping induced melancholy on the way home. Peace is restored in my soul, [or should I say sole]. I am blinged up to the max with a bracelet, a necklace and high heeled shoes that I can actually (just about) walk in. Now all I need to do is write my speech :) 

 

 

I WISH YOU COULD…

I wish you could be exactly the person I wanted.

I wish you could be here right now.

I wish you could comb your fingers gently through my hair, and tease out the tangled mess in my brain and heart too whilst you’re at it.

I wish you could be here beside me, but not with reality putting the spoilers on it. Let me have my fantasy, just for tonight. Please.

This isn’t some sordid piece about sexual fantasies of some red hot fantasy lover. This is about my longing for a mother.

It isn’t ugly to want to be nurtured.

It shouldn’t be forbidden to express what we’re missing and to shine the torchlight into the huge void- the place where the empty space sucks in the joy.

Everyone has an empty space inside.

Some of us are accustomed to feeling emptier and spacier than others.

Or maybe sometimes in life we just feel fuller and more satisfied than at other times.

I am sick of the deep ache.

It hurts, that ache.

Does time really heal hurt of loss?…well I guess the answer is both yes and no (fence sitting is more than allowed in this case). Yes it gets easier, AND no it fucking doesn’t. Both truisms are totally true.

I have a special blogger friend who lost her mum to suicide. Her and me, we connect beautifully, not only bevause we are both shamazing writers 😂 but because we both match up in our very specific mother-shaped emptiness.

I feel for her and her for me.

We counselled each other at the weekend via Facebook messenger.

We were both feeling very childlike and tearful and low.

But while I can enpathise (as far as I can) with her feelings around her mum’s tragic suicide, her mum isn’t there but mine is still alive, and that is where the similarity ends.

Bereavement can be literal, brought about by physical death, or it can be just as real, representative of the permenent death or severing of a mother-daughter relationship.

Both types of losses hurt and ache in a way that time alone doesn’t heal. If time does heal, it must be at the pace of the slowest snail known to man/woman kind, because I haven’t felt any discernible difference in how much I miss my mum now compared to how much I missed her when we first became estranged.

It’s been so long now that I don’t count it in months, and have lost track of the number of years.

I cry less, and less loudly I suppose. There are less minutes overall spent weeping into tear-dampened crumpled pillows with melencholic mood congruent music blaring out of Spotify. But the hurt is still there- it just makes far less of a sound.

Tonight I hurt in the silence. And this kind of silent hurting and yearning is something I can’t help but throw myself into feet first. Of course I don’t want to hurt this much, and I don’t consciously intend to dwell on it, but I’d rather be honest about my loss than pretend I’m fine when I’m definitely not fucking fine.

I am soothed by the rhythmic ticking of a clock. I am all cocooned in this room-my loneliness and longing is contained within four plasterboard walls. Tonight the ticking clock is like a heart beat to me, reminding me of what I would have heard booming out in my mother’s womb- back then when we were connected and I was sustained by that cord of umbilical life.

In the womb, she breathed for me in those early weeks. I was fed by her. She helped me grow and develop from tiny seed to mini alien to pink newborn screechy creature wrapped in snow white terry toweling.

How can I possibly forget her?

How can any child forget their mother?

You may not like them, you may not even love them, but I dare you to be able to try and forget them- try it. I think you’ll find it’s impossible.

What have I got to replace her, or who have I got?

I no longer have contact with any human who has known me all thirty six years of my life.

No one who was there from the beginning is still present.

I am left just with me.

My therapist can’t be a substitute. That’s just FREAKY, and my therapist won’t be around much longer I would imagine.

She will go and continue to nurture other damaged people, for a living.

In my real/non-therapy life I have existed for 36 years, but the longest relationship I’ve sustained is not 36 years, but 20.

Twenty years is the length of time I have been with my husband. The initial sixteen years before that were lived in a climate of fear within my family unit, but no one is around from that era to even validate to me that it even ever happened.

But I know it happened. I know.

The past lives on in the present and future, without the people physically being present to kick or punch or administer chinese burns to in protest for the PTSD shit storm they created.

I have a small number of photographs and a whole internal photo album of memories and cine tapes that play in my mind, but I don’t have my mum anymore even though she is still alive.

I’m bitter about that, very bitter and very lost.

Is she sat quietly in her room tonight, looking out at the inky blackness of the dark skies, wondering about me? Her daughter?

When she hears a ticking clock, is it just a ticking clock to her? Or does she hear my heartbeat, just as I would wish to imagine I am hearing and feeling and imagining hers.

I’ll never know, will I.

SummerSHINES

SOUL BE YOUR PILOT

Who knows what invalidation means? This isn’t a SAT test. I am just not sure how aware people are of the term invalidation and what implication it has in relationships and potential conflict scenarios.

The dictionary definition of invalidation is this-

to nullify, negate, annul, abrogate-

to invalidate means to deprive of effective or continued existence. (nullify implies counteracting completely the force, effectiveness, or value of something.)

Invalidation is when you express an opinion and someone says your opinion is rubbish. Invalidation is when you state a fact, and that “fact” is argued with. Invalidation is when you say you feel something, and someone else decides you have no actual reason they can understand to feel that thing you’re feeling, so you should stop feeling it immediately and also quit telling anyone you’re feeling it.

In essence, invalidating someone is a posh term to describe the phenomena of trying to make someone shut up, without literally using the phrase “shut up”. Invalidation is there to shame the person into shutting up, because you are contesting their sheer validity as a human being capable of having any opinion about anything.

Invalidating someone is not the way to diffuse upset in the other person. Invalidation actually has the opposite effect. Rather than you and the other aggrieved party meeting somewhere in the middle- opinions, thoughts and feelings (usually negative ones) become polarised and even stronger, especially if you are someone particularly sensitive to the psychological impact of invalidation, as I am.

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People with Borderline PD (like me) are almost always born into invalidating environments, by care givers who repeatedly invalidate/nullify/negate/annul/abrogate us. I didn’t just make this psychological fact up. This is based on extensive research by Marsha Linehan, the founder of the best known treatment of BPD-Dialectical Behaviour Therapy. If you are repeatedly told your way of perceiving things is wrong, that your feelings are wrong, that your thoughts are wrong, that the conclusions you come to are wrong, then it is both very frustrating, and very damaging. We believe (often falsely) that the grown ups know it all, so we conclude we (the children) must be wrong.

Repeated invalidation makes it really hard to reliably and confidently use our instincts and perceptual abilities to decipher exactly what is happening in our environments and in our social relationships. We start to lose faith in ourselves. We start to think we must be mad, as we are thinking, feeling and perceiving things is ways alien to those around us, so we start to tune out of ourselves, ignore our natural intuitions, and instead use others as a guide for how we should be thinking, what we should be feeling, how we should be acting, what we should be saying, (or not saying). Rather than (as Sting said) letting our soul be our pilot, we let others be our pilots. We watch what they do, and we do it too. We assess what others are thinking, we think it too. We notice what others may be feeling, we try and feel it too, (or not feel it, if no one is feeling anything).

So reflecting on my recent conflict sitch with the recovery college, what I find surprising, especially given the context of the mental health framework that the recovery college sits within, is how much my valid complaints were invalidated by those in a position of overall responsibility for that organisation.

The manager of the recovery college has BPD, so I am surprised she wasn’t more validating as presumably she knows all about invalidation and the social and emotional destructiveness of it.  Not receiving an email acknowledgement so far about my apology is also pretty invalidating.

Invalidation really is something that I take issue with, and it a concept that once I first read about it, it immediately struck a chord or recognition.

The word ‘invalidation’ gave a name to something that I’d always found very frustrating and upsetting about members of my family, so even though I’m now an adult [well most of the time :D) it still bugs me.

This is what happened-it is my 4-step anatomy of me recent conflict….

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And this is what happens emotionally when we are invalidated….

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This leads to questions, and answers……

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An organisation who respond to feedback by invalidating the complainant don’t get my respect, esp. given the mental health framework of the consumers of that service being (I’d expect) predominantly NHS mental health service users, or ex-service users, with histories of diagnosed mental illnesses.

Invalidating does I suppose give the defenders what they want, as the complainant feels deterred and disrespected and responds by withdrawal, but does invalidating actually stop the feelings, thoughts, opinions, reactions from being experienced? Nope. Not one bit.

Invalidation is the equivalent of putting tape over someone’s mouth and saying (with fingers in ears) la la laaah we don’t want to hear your feedback, but the person with the taped up mouth will only ever resent those that taped her mouth up, and it is impossible for anything positive to be rebuilt.

If there is no meeting is the middle, there will only ever be two polarised parties, disagreeing and opposed, usually with considerable ill feeling to one another, on both sides.

It becomes enemy lines, rather than working together to improve things for mutual benefit. That’s sad, but I do get the defensiveness, especially when 15 year old Blood is my spokesperson! f you don’t know what the hell I’m on about here please see my earlier post titled “Right to Reply” for a full introduction to my rebellious alter, Blood)

When invalidation happens, from others, the only real solution (once you’ve thought it through and reflected on it and realised your views are valid and justifiable) is to implement some hardcore self-validation. Self-validation is accepting your own internal experience, your thoughts and feelings as real and acceptable and OK.

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Once we self-validate, we feel OK. It doesn’t mean the outer invalidation is any less annoying or difficult to stomach, but at least we can hold our heads up high and know we don’t require the approval of the people we are complaining to, to make us feel ok about complaining in the first place.

Self-validation rights the wrongs of invalidation.

Sometimes, when faced with the frustration of invalidation, it is the only thing left that we can do.

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summerSHINES©