A journal entry…

I hate the fact that I have not had the time to write since starting university this year. I think about it all the time but I always seem to have something that needs to be done. Nevertheless, I am here now writing this post. Better late than never.

A lot has happened since I last wrote and I have reached extremely positive states and dropped back down to low ones. I am feeling very low tonight, which is why I cannot sleep. I have started my counselling and worked on great tips to help with my anxiety. If you have not done a worry tree before, try it! I hope to share more tips with you very soon. What I have not addressed yet is depression. I thought it may be good for me to read a journal that I wrote back in July when my depression was at its worst to make me reflect on how far I have come and I wanted to share an entry with you.

‘ I don’t know what else I can say . I cant even think straight let alone talk. Its all one big jumbled up mess again in my head. Like a pair of headphones or a necklace that ends up in that awful tangle that can take hours to undo. The last week has been hell and I haven’t even had time to write, or maybe I just didn’t find time. I’ve gone back to wanting to sleep every moment that I don’t have anything important to do. Even then I cant sleep without having nightmares. I thought Angel would be with me everyday to help guide me but maybe they have a limit on how many times they can interfere. I have gone back to square one all over again. I cant understand how my feelings are such a rollercoaster and neither can he. One moment I sit and day dream, about the future, about buying houses, having children. I see a time where I am completely content and no longer feel pain, no longer fear. There are times where I sit or lay in his arms and cant stop smiling. I say I love you so often and kiss him so much that he actually finds it annoying and asks me to chill out. In those moments I have found my passion again. I don’t feel lost, I feel like a happy healthy girl, vibrant with goals, and so set and driven to reach them. But just moments later I can feel the complete opposite. I am lost with no direction, no idea what path I should take, no idea what choices to make , and here I often find myself making the wrong ones. How can this be? How can my thoughts and feelings change in what seems like the flip of a coin by a person playing a game with my life. Sometimes if I am lucky I may land on heads every time he flips it in that one day. More often than not I get my fair share of tails. Even writing this, the choice of words I have used I am beginning to see that I have little belief in having control over my own life. I think I’ve struggled since a little girl to believe that I can decide what happens and whether I can be happy. Why would I choose to be abused? I cant have wanted that, I cant have consciously taken steps to cause that to happen, could I? Maybe now as an adult I need to start realising that I do now have power over my life. Now I do have control over the situations I put myself in. Deep down I know its down to me to find a way to get passed these feelings so that I can live a life. But in moments like this I am not living at all , and all I think about is going to sleep and never waking up.’

I wanted to share this entry because it relates to my counselling session this week. Reading back over this its clear that at the time I was trying to say that my past experiences were controlling my life, and in particular the abuse. My Counsellor told me that I must work on comforting the little girl from my past who lives inside me. I must tell her she is safe now and that she cannot be hurt anymore. I must do what was not done all those years ago so that she can be at peace and let the current me have control back.

Many of my other blog posts focus on gaining control of your own mind. I really do believe that is the key to happiness and success.

Until next time.

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Contributing to the future of others…

I have said since my son was born that I want to make a difference in the world. That I wanted have a positive impact on peoples life, to make the hard times just that little bit easier.

It soon occurred to me that there is no plain and simple way to do this. There is not just one act that will help you meet this goal. Instead, you must do little things, all the time. These things add up, and eventually you will have impacted many lives in many ways.

Last night I was sat in my car and I wasn’t even paying attention to the radio until a phrase caught my attention. “Childhood Sexual Abuse”. Automatically I tuned in. The Truth Project were advertising for people to share their stories of CSA. So this evening I had a look on their website and read about what they do. They are working on the Independent Inquiry into Child Sex Abuse. All they are asking for is victims or survivors to share their stories with them so that they can gain an understanding of what is working well and what is failing in the current system. Their aim is to provide better protection for the children of the future, and of course have a better system to receive those who have been unfortunate enough to be a victim.

As difficult as it is to sit down and tell your story to someone, I signed myself up. This is one thing that I can do, to try to help the children of the future. One thing that I can do to help make the world a better place, for my sons generation and the generation to come. There are so many little things, that we could all do daily, that together, will make a difference.

If you are a CSA victim or survivor, please have a look at their page and see if you can help too!

Ps. I haven’t had much time to write lately, but I have set up a new Instagram with regular positive, inspirational posts.. Please follow it @beyourowninspiration_

Thank you!!

Until next time.

Emotional Intelligence – The power of the mind, yet again!

So this week I had a uni task and it has really inspired me to write this post. The task was to prepare a three minute speech on why we should receive a graduate trainee manager position. That was it, no elaboration on the job description whatsoever.

I decided that I’d focus on my interpersonal skills and how they would enable me to be good at management. I thought about what I think makes a good manager, and what I like about managers that I have had in the past and I ended up going into great detail about emotional intelligence. I had some training on this a few years ago in one of my previous jobs. They believed that It would be really beneficial to all staff members, at the time I didn’t understand how it was relevant to the job. After the emotional crisis that I have just been through, and the better understanding of life, I finally get it!

What is emotional intelligence? well.. for those of you who may not know let me give you a brief explanation.

Emotional intelligence is the ability to understand our own emotions as well as the emotions of others, and furthermore to use that understanding in order to guide ourselves or another.

I cannot believe how well this links in to combatting depression and anxiety. Being able to recognise when we feel a certain way, understanding why, and then adapting our behaviour in response to that emotion. That is exactly what we need to be doing in order to achieve our desired outcome.

It would benefit everybody to be able to manage themselves, whether they struggle with mental health or not, but what really inspires me the most about this concept is the consideration of others emotions. I have been focusing on the benefits of this in terms of employability. How you could be a better manager if you were able to understand the feelings of your employees and adapt your methods as a result of this. As a really basic example, it is your responsibility as manager to increase sales. You are able to recognise that employee A feels disappointed and disheartened when they complete a sale but receive no recognition for it. You come to learn that employee A loves to feel like their efforts are acknowledged and appreciated immediately after a sale. Therefore, you simply congratulate them and reward them with some sort of recognition incentive. This causes employee A to feel positive emotions, and so causes them to enter the next negotiation with a really positive mindset. As a manger, its a double whammy. You have made your employee feel important, made them happy and you are also growing business!

This does not just apply to your careers either. Imagine how much better your relationships with friends and family could be if you were more intelligent in their emotions? This is not be confused with the concept of allowing people to make excuses, and perhaps even abolishes the idea. The more emotionally intelligent you become the more that you understand and appreciate that whether they seem reasonable or not to yourself, everyone is affected by emotions in different ways. Recognising when your friend is experiencing an emotion, and knowing what you can do to guide them away from that emotion into a more positive one is a truly invaluable trait to have.

If you have never heard of it before, I urge you to spend 10-15 minutes to just research it. It will be really beneficial to your life and your career no matter what it is that you do!

Remember, we are all here on this planet together. Selfishness will not achieve you success, you will reach far greater in life If you allow yourself to be helped by others and help others yourself.

Until next time.

The greatest strength lies inside your mind.

If your reading this blog it is probably because your mind currently, or at some point during your life, seems to have taken control of itself and your life, and you feel like you can’t stop yourself from feeling a certain way or doing certain things.

I know when I was feeling my lowest that I thought there was no way out. I thought that the only way I could escape my mind, which had run free and messed up so many things in my life, was to take my life. It seemed impossible at the time, that the very tool which was destroying my life was also the only tool that could build up the life that I want to live. The mind is key to success. Whether that be setting up a business, pulling yourself out of depression or climbing mount Everest. You can’t do any of those things without your mind, a positive mind-set is a catalyst for success.

There are so many things that I do or don’t do in my life, that I want to do or to not do. Let me give you some examples. I have got much better at managing my money, ensuring that I am not left with absolutely nothing for any period of time but I’d really like to save and I’m not hitting my savings goals at this moment in time. There is only one reason why. I haven’t got the right mindset yet. I know what I want to save for, but I do not have the determination to fully commit. I have stopped myself from buying expensive things that I don’t need, but I still end up spending unnecessarily, usually on food. If I want to save money, I need to have the willpower or it will never happen and willpower comes from the mind.

Let me tell you where I have practiced this successfully. In some of my other posts I mention the break up that happened almost 2 months ago with my ex boyfriend. I kept saying, and kept thinking that I wouldn’t ever be able to love again. And, if I am to be completely honest I am still not sure that I will. However, what I have done is changed my mind-set, and I am using my emotions and heartbreak to my advantage. Let me tell you how. I am very afraid, to let anyone else in after all of the past experiences that I have had, but, it is my dream to have a loving relationship, to settle down and it always has been. I am a really family orientated girl, very maternal, and my idea of happiness sits comfortably in the family life regime. So why should I remain a single parent, with only one child, when my dream is to have more than one child and to marry? I shouldn’t. Just because I have had my heart broken, I shouldn’t run away from my dreams because if I don’t then at least I have a chance of reaching them right? Okay so this is what I have been doing…

In the 2 months that I have been single I have only felt well enough to talk to another male in the last two weeks. I discussed it with my councillor and she and I developed a few things that we should do in order to help me get back into the world of dating, but protect myself from making the wrong choices. One thing that I mentioned to her was doing things too soon, from getting intimate, to becoming in a relationship and introducing my child. So I have created a list of 5 questions that I must ask any man that I am seeking that kind of relationship with. It is not an interview so they will not be word for word, and I will be slipping them into natural conversations where they are applicable. This is to help me to identify at an early stage whether the person has the traits and personality that I am looking for, before things start to get to complicated.

Now I feel myself drifting away from my actual intended point here, the power of the mind, but methodology is important too. So basically what I am doing is taking things very slowly, and ensuring that I am finding out the important things sooner rather than later. If you have read my earlier blogs you may know that I am a survivor of childhood sexual abuse. I want to explain a little bit about how that has affected my relationships, and particularly my sex life so that you can understand why I feel I have made great progress over the last 2 weeks. My experiences as a child made me grow up feeling like no more than a sex doll, sad, but its true. Now some survivors go the opposite way, they have a fear of people going anywhere near them or touching them physically and so become afraid of sex following the trauma. For me, the experience was very different. Due to re-victimisation very shortly after the first spate of abuse I entered my teenage to adult years feeling as though I was worth nothing more than sex. Like that was the only thing I was good at, the only purpose that I had. My brain had also programmed itself into believing that my opinions, my desires, what I wanted, had no significance. Therefore, if a male wanted me, I would often consent even if I didn’t truly want to. Many will say that this makes me a slut, but I am not offended by their thoughts or comments because they don’t understand what I went through and what it did to my head. I no longer have to be ashamed because I have discovered the issue, and I have addressed it and now I have put my plans into action using nothing but my mind. On every occasion that I have seen this one guy over the last two weeks I have gone no further than to kiss him. I regret to say that this an achievement for me. No matter that I had alcohol in my system, no matter that he was trying to persuade me to change my mind. I went into his company telling myself that I was not going to give any sexual contact and I stuck to my guns every single time. Part of this is to see if he respects my wishes, or whether sex is all he wants. Part of it is to make him chase and see him put in the effort. But do you know what the most important part of it has been? Showing myself that I CAN do anything that I set my mind to. I don’t have to be a slave to sex as the males of the past made my mind believe. I can be whoever I want to be. I deserve more than giving myself up straight away, I deserve to grafted for, but I have to make that happen.

The above example may be un-relatable to many of you reading it, but the point that I want to get across is that you can change lifetime habits, you can change habitual thinking patterns, cognitive distortions that have been instilled in you since a very young age. The key is the mind. You must use your mind, you must adapt your mind-set. The behaviours and everything else required for your success will follow once your mind has found the right path.

Believe in yourself, challenge yourself. You are your best supporter and your worst enemy. Once you unlock the full potential of your mind, you can be unstoppable.

I hope this post inspires you to test the powers of your own mind, success is like dominoes! Once you achieve one goal, you believe, and once you believe, you can begin to smash all of your goals one after the other in succession.

Good luck.

Until next time.

Anxiety through negative associations…

Next weekend I am going to Amsterdam. I should be overly excited, but I’m a tad confused and anxious.

Let’s go back a few months, I had my 21st birthday, I didnt do anything big to celebrate it, but I was going to Tenerife a few days after and that would be my time to celebrate with my friends and family. I think back to that holiday and how it was both the best and worst holiday of my life. I feel so much guilt because I feel like I ruined it for myself, and for everyone else that came along. I wasn’t myself on that holiday, usually when I am away I am in my element. I make lots of great memories and I have major holiday blues for weeks afterwards. But this holiday was the beginning of my melt down.

I had been feeling unwell for months before this mentally, may be even longer. Let’s say from summer time last year I started to suffer with my anxiety and depression worse than ever before. Then I got with my ex and things started to get better, because I had all of the good things that I wanted in life. But at the same time, they started getting worse, because I had more to loose, more to be afraid of. This started to slowly nag at me and build up. Then combined with pregnancy hormones o had my first break down, I didn’t know at the time that it was due to pregnancy. I threw my toys out of the pram and spent a few weeks with emotions flying around all over the place, typical of me when I’m pregnant. Let me warn you now, if I’m ever acting completing pyscho hand me a pregnancy test that is more than likely the answer!

The discovery was soon met by a traumatic misscarraige. The worst experience I have ever had in my life so far and from that point on I struggled to see a day go by where I was truly content and happy. Instead I became more depressed. I spent one whole lunch break crying to myself, having an anxiety attack in my car because I felt guilty for the loss, for misscarrying. I felt like I couldn’t get excited about my own upcoming birthday because it was my fault that the little child that started growing inside me would never have a birth day at all.

So by the time the holiday came round, I was not in a good place. I had a very good few days with my boyfriend before we went. He made me so unbelievably happy on my birthday, and that was when I realised that I really loved that man and that I finally had everything that I wanted but I just needed to get better to see it. I remember sitting on the hair salon before we went, reading hapiful magazine and sending him a picture of something that I read, promising I was going to get myself better. But we went on the holiday and I couldn’t let go of the pain inside me. I was sleeping in, being lazy, and I neglected valuable time with my family and friends that I don’t get to see very often because my head just wasnt there with me. But at the same time as not being able to enjoy it like I should have, I spent a whole week of quality time with my new founded family and that felt perfect. Waking up every morning, and going to sleep every night with my two favourite boys was incredible. It made my love grow so much stronger and I was looking forward to making that a regular occurrence in the near future.

The end of that holiday was the end of my happiness for a while, we came home and we argued for weeks. Certain things happened and the relationship was on very thin ice. Then we went to Paris, and the ice broke. I think I was the one that plunged deep into the freezing water below and he just stood on the ice above looking down into the whole were I once stood. It has taken me weeks to so much as smile and laugh, but I am starting to get better now. The journey home from Paris was the worst imaginable, I cried from the moment we arrived at the airport until the moment I slept on the plane. It was a traumatic experience in itself, embarrassing, awkward, extremely upsetting.

I feel in a slightly better place now but I am scared to drive the same drive to the airport, to walk into the same departure lounge and board the same airline. I don’t know how that is going to make me feel and I really hope that it doesn’t put me in the wrong mindset for my break Way because I just want to enjoy myself and let go of all this pain and negativity.

But the brain can be a bitch at times, it will associate that orange and white plane, the pretzel company where I bought him his first ever pretzel, even the toilets that I waited beside for him. My brain will associate all of those things with the whole episode of depression that I have just been through and I don’t quite know yet how I’m going to tackle that.

My last two holidays have been destructive to my life. Hopefully third time lucky.

Until next time.

Thoughts like buzzing bumblebees.

I want to take a walk through my last relationship, from the very beginning, to the very end. ( Now reading this back it definitely does not come close to start to end, I’m going to have to write a book if I want to do that!) Not missing out anything, a true reflection of how I felt, and a true reflection of the things that I did.

So we were in the same team at work, that’s how we met, I had no interest in him sexually I just thought he was a funny guy, he made me laugh. I enjoyed a little bit of banter with him, he made me smile. What he doesn’t know, is that my mood was very low just weeks before we started talking. I think he believes that I was a happy person then, but let me tell you deep inside I was hurting. I was surprised that he didn’t see me just a few weeks before coming into work looking like I had been hit by a bus, a bit like I’ve been lately. Not eating, not sleeping, I still to this day wonder how he didn’t see me like that, and how it never put him off. I had a shit summer, I fucked up my a levels, I was still getting shit off the father of my child and to make it worse, I got played by a guy and I stupidly thought it would be good to play the game back. It didn’t turn out well for me, and I have regretted it every single day since. See I learnt a lesson at that time, that point scoring doesn’t win you an emotional game.

Okay so we started talking a little, okay maybe not a little, a lot. I don’t do early mornings but this guy kept me up silly late talking to him and I still managed to go to work with a smile on my face. Talking to him was great, I thought we shared similar values, I thought we were on the same page. I have to be comply honest, when I say that what had just happened with C wasnt out of my head yet. C had messed me around a lot, and C didn’t want me, I knew that. But if he was graded on his ability to confuse me I would give him an A*. He wanted me at his beck and call, but he didn’t want to be at mine. It was not healthy, but at the time, it was all I had. And I think we have established that up until now, I have always needed someone. Having someone on my life, makes my life more bearable. Being shown love and affection, makes me feel worthy of life. Anyway, back to the situation. My now ex, then blossoming new relationship, asked if I wanted to have a chat with him face to face after work one day. C just so conveniently happened to see this chat take place and my phone exploded. He told me he loved me, for the first time and we had been seeing eachother on and off for months and months, and I can’t tell you how much I wanted to hear those words from him. But I was so confused.

I decided that I needed to give my ex a fair shot, rather than being up against someone that I had a lot of chemistry for. So that’s what I did, o talked more, I went on dates, and I fell for him. But the whole time I was afraid. I didn’t feel ready, he was very honest about the person he was in the past and that made me very apprehensive about opening myself up to him, and I was umming and arring about what to do. I wanted to choose my heart, and I did, choose my heart but that doesn’t silence my head. He asked me, to be his girlfriend, and o wasn’t expecting it. I said yes without giving it any thought. My love for him grew, but my trust issues exploded. The more I loved, the more I was able to be hurt. I don’t know if I was always going to be hurt, or if I pushed him unit hurting me, or if I deserved for having doubts.

Surely everybody has doubts right? It was very new and I didn’t know if it was right for me or not. I didn’t use this as a justification for myself to go out and test any waters, believe it or not that really isn’t me. I never flirted with anyone, not even a cheeky smile, or a slightly over friendly text. I wanted it to be prefect, but there was only ever one thing I couldn’t defeat. C.

When I was feeling really down, I would turn to him. So stupid to do that. I might not have had him at my neck and call, but I knew I could count on him more than anyone else that I have here to be there for me. I could count on my hands the number of conversations that I had with him. It wasn’t like I was having a full on affair, I didn’t kiss the guy, I didn’t touch the guy, not once when I was with my ex. I know talking to him over text was wrong, and sometimes I may have said things about how I felt about him, which is also wrong, but it was true. Sometimes the truth hurts but I have no time for lies now. Point is, nothing physical ever happened whilst I was in a relationship.

There were certain things going on in my relationship that I had to adapt to. Things that I had never experienced before, didn’t know how to deal with. I’m not going to lie at first I questioned myself could I do it? Could I live with this change?… But do you know what, I gave myself a shot, I gave myself belief and in belief I succeeded. Many would have secretly found away to not have to change, or just gave up without giving change a chance but I never did. The love I was building in my heart became more important than anything else I have ever experienced.

Everyone is different, and I know that everyone is affected by things differently. Don’t get me wrong, nobody is okay with their partner talking to someone else behind their back, no matter how many times or who it is. I don’t mean to sound as though I am trying to justify a ring action here because I’m not, but in order to love with myself I have to forgive myself and to forgive I must give myself an explanation. I know that my wrongdoing was not out of spite, not out of hate, I wasn’t point scoring, or just being plain greedy. I turned to one person, for no other reason than that we had a connection. I turned to him at times that I was afraid and sad, because I wanted to feel like somebody cared. What I have learnt, is that the only way to fix something like that, is to actually sit down and talk to the person that’s making you feel that way, and explain to them why you feel that way. If your love is strong enough, you will find a way together, to work it out.

What’s brought this on tonight? I try not to wonder over it in my mind, but sometimes things trigger it and I can’t help myself. I know, hand on my heart, hope to die, that I only ever made one mistake – one person. I find myself asking the question how many girls really were there that he came close to, stood on, or crossed the line with? Would it be better if I knew, or am I better off never having the truth? I have suffered all my life facing the consequences of a person’s lie. The reality is that one persons lie, is enough to make me want to end my life. But I know that one is a lie, because I know the truth. There are many things I don’t know the truth about, would I rather it come out? Or is it better left in the closet? Who knows maybe if I never spoke up about my abuse it would affect me the way it does now? Maybe I wouldn’t feel like my words are worthless, maybe I wouldn’t feel let down by my friends and family. Maybe I wouldn’t feel like my feelings are not justified because if I explain them they are little more than an excuse to others.

Silly really, I was feeling a little lonely, and I was asking myself about tinder. Should I download it, why not I deserve to meet someone in the end right? But i couldn’t bare the thought of coming across him on there I know it would cause me more pain than I’d ever gain from the app. Then I thought maybe I could meet people another way, a different app that he won’t be on an then something hit me. I remember seeing a dating app on his iPad. And my thoughts began to wonder, I had always told myself that was just old and he no longer used it. But what if that wasn’t the case, what if he was using my logic, but when we were together. What if my boyfriend, the one who was playing father to my child, was also dating online. And here I am again, in floods of tears, wondering what someone up there would be able to see if they looked down at my life, the things that go on behind my back, the truths.

I need my guardian angel back, I can’t find her.

Until next time.

Off Guard

Its 3am in the morning, I have an early start, I should be fast asleep. Instead my emotions have been caught off guard and I’m stuck thinking about my ex, everything about him.

As I lay here in my bed I close my eyes and try to imagine the feeling of his mattress beneath me, the heaviness of his duvet. The smell of his room, of this aftershave. The feeling of his soft skin against my cheek as I lay with my head on his chest. I used to do that every weekend. That was my home. See the truth is, nowhere has ever really felt like home to me before.

My first house, where I grew up, was ruined by memories of my first abuser. I can’t think back and picture my bedroom without picturing him there with me. No matter what memory I have, it always ends up coming back to him. I remember being in the front attick room of our house, I had always shared with my brother on the floor below but the lodger had moved out and I could finally have my own room. All girly. I remember that room, one Christmas Eve, I thought I would be able to hear santa land on my roof because I was so close. A little girl excited for Christmas. But then I remember that same room, that same bed. I remember being completely naked laying on the bed beneath him completely naked. I didn’t have that room for long, so now that I think about it, my sexual journey started before I stopped believing in Santa Claus. What kind of a childhood is that?

The next house I lived in he also visited once or twice, and whilst not much happened there it was were I was living when I first spoke up about what had happened. My memories of that house are surrounded by police interviews and interrogation and upset within my family. It seems like all of the good memories I ever had in either house only come back very rarely but these ones I could relive every moment, every fine detail at any point.

The house I lived in after that, during my teenage years, where my mum still lives now. That was where I was living during my second episode of abuse. The bed that I layed in when I was 13 years old, with a man who was 24. The convincing rapist, the groomer. It’s no wonder I have no self esteem, and no ability to believe in myself when I let that happen to me. Why didn’t I stop it? Why didn’t I see that it was wrong?

I moved to my father’s house for a little while, which is where I currently live now. It doesn’t feel like home, not one bit. I think that’s just because I am not close to anyone here, apart from my son, but he will be with me wherever I go. It’s not mine, I’ve not been able to decorate my room, I’m bound by rules, I don’t feel free. More than anything I feel lonely, and when I’m lonely, like this very moment, my thoughts consume me. And I cry, I cry until I fall asleep.

Before returning here, I lived in a flat with my ex and my baby. It would have felt like home if it wasn’t the very place that I was attacked whilst pregnant. Full of raging arguments, a place where I often felt low and didn’t want to live anymore.

My ex’s house started to feel like home. Whilst we bickered about things and had disagreements we never had a fight, he never physically hurt me, he never raped me. It was the only bed that I layed my head to sleep on where I was safe. Whilst I never felt safe mentally, because I felt like the whole world was attacking me, him included. Compared to the rest of my life this was a safe haven. With more happy memories than bad ones. With more positives than negatives. One place that I actually felt loved and welcomed. I felt like I was actually wanted there.

I think of the feeling of his teeny tight curls between my fingers. I loved playing with his hair, it felt so different to any other head I’d touched. That’s why I liked it so much. As I squished the strands in my fingers I dreamt of having little babies with the same hair, that I would play with in the same way until it wasn’t cool for me to do it anymore. I think of how our lips met when we kissed, his were like a big soft cushion. Never had a kiss that felt so right before.

Now I can’t even reply to a text. Every time I engage in conversation with him I feel at rock bottom, and I don’t want to live anymore. I’ve had a long time to work out why my head is so messed up, and I know the causes of most of my struggles and emotions, but not this one. The only thing I know is that not talking to him at all has helped me to start seeing a future for myself, but clearly it does not mean that I do not think about him. It does not mean that I do not miss him. My councillor asked me last week what I wanted and I said I don’t know. She likes to remind me that I may well find someone else who treats me better than I have ever been treated before. Fills me with optimism. It’s true, I could. But how do I know? I’m afraid. I’m afraid to ever let anyone in again. I’m afraid to date, I’m afraid to let anyone fall in love with me because they may no longer want me when they find out what I’ve been through and how it affects my life. I’m afraid of abondonment. My ex felt like I caught him under false pretences. Clearly the way I was acting when he fell for me, the person I was then, I am not able to manage all the time. How long can it last? I may find someone else, I may be able to be the good me for a week, a month, a year. Long enough to attract them. But what happens if I come back to this place, what happens when I’m struggling, when I’m hurting. Even though it’s not their fault, they may leave me, again, because I’m not the person they thought I was. How will I ever attract someone if I’m honest with them at the start? How do you say to someone.. oh by the way, before you fall in love with me, i was abused as a child, as a teenager, subject to domestic violence when I was just an adult and that has made me fragile. I have issues with trust and sometimes i just may not want to be alive. Be lucky if they even pay half the bill and don’t run from the restaurant before finishing their food.

I don’t know. It’s all I keep saying, to everyone, to myself. I don’t know what to make of the situation. I don’t know what I want for the future. I don’t know if I’ll ever love again. I’m just stuck here in limbo.

Until next time.