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    The Abyssal Inn

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  1. Cheese, is this something your care provider is recommending? Because trying to “reset” one’s meds baseline is not a thing that someone should attempt to do on his or her own. It’s not as though our heads get cluttered like an old attic with leftover bits of meds - our meds get metabolized by our bodies at various rates and the resulting compounds are filtered from our systems via kidneys and liver. If by “meds wash” you mean stopping all meds until you’re certain there’s nothing at all in your system - i.e., that you’re now completely unmedicated - only to start up again, this makes little sense. You’d simply be going right back to where you were before you discontinued, except that now you’ll have to wait for the meds to reach a therapeutic level in your system now that you’ve interrupted the state you had already established. The notion that the meds that you just stopped taking will suddenly start working differently in your system when you start the very same meds again also has no clear basis. Unless you have a specific reason to believe that a pause is going to somehow change the way the med works in your system (and by “specific reason” I mean a reason given to you by your doctor) then it simply doesn’t make sense. If you’re talking about clearing out your system of your current meds in order to replace them with different meds, that’s not a conversation you should have with us; you should definitely be talking about a change that significant directly with your doctor. And to be absolutely frank and candid with you, from what we have observed here of your condition in recent months, I cannot in any way get behind the idea of you discontinuing treatment for any length of time, especially if you’re not doing it on the advice and under the close supervision of your doctor. This “wash” sound very baby-out-with-the-bathwater to me.
  2. 'Scrum' sounds like a some dish invented during the Elizabethan period by poor dockworkers and still served locally at pubs even though nobody likes it because it's the thing everyone is supposed to eat whilst they watch rugby. By "wrestling" I presume you mean "professional" wrestling, which is indeed more spectacle than sport, but then, I truly believe a sizable proportion of the populace would be perfectly happy for us to return to gladiatorial bloodletting if they could stream it live for free. Actual wrestling of the Greco-Roman variety, however, is quite arguably a legitimate sporting event, and was a staple of the original Olympic games. When I was learning mixed martial arts as a component of Tae Kwon Do, the training included a measure of 'ground-fighting', which essentially amounted to wrestling. I do not enjoy it. The whole purpose seems to be to press yourself as close as humanly possible to the other human being, which is the Wrong Direction as far as I'm concerned.
  3. @Fluent In Silence - It occurs to me to ask, given the current topic: Do you ever consider eating a worm? As in Nobody loves me Everybody hates me I think I'll eat a worm Never having done it myself, I can neither encourage nor discourage it, though it does seem hard on the worm. It's also difficult to see how, as a solution to the problem, it works to make one any more loveable. But perhaps that's the point: A nonsensical solution to a nonsensical assertion. Given that the negative perception isn't really true, it hardly matters that the worm would be useless in correcting it and only helpful in amplifying the misery of the consumer. (Especially if it's reference to drowning one's misery in mezcal, which is contraindicated—alcohol is a depressant.)
  4. So, as you're watching, as we assume, unencumbered by knowledge of the rules (aka how the game is supposed to be played), what is it that you entertain is actually happening on the field? If you had to explain the game to someone who had never seen it before, what would you say? I don't know the rules of rugby either, and I don't believe I've ever watched endured an entire game of it. I've always assumed it's called 'rugby' because 'we all fall down' was too cumbersome to say, and because 'collisions and piles' suggests a board game like 'chutes and ladders'.
  5. You can't run away from yourself. You're attached to yourself at the back. I understand exactly what you're saying. The thing is, you're already halfway to the point where you can start to overcome this. What I mean is that you have reached a point of introspection and self-awareness that you can abstractly recognize that your disordered thinking patterns are disordered, point out what isn't normal about them, identify their direct influences on your mood, and speculate on their origins. This is all very good. The next step is to train your dominant cognitive awareness to form an objective distance from the patterns it observes, to consider them as a phenomenon rather than as an expression of normality. Remember - everything that voice says is a lie. It is always a lie. It is either a lie of falsehood, or a lie of omission, or a half-truth construed to ill, but regardless, it is a lie. You must reach the point at which you realize without even thinking about it that that voice is lying, and immediately challenge anything it says. For example: If you can't accept yourself, then why would anyone else want anything to do with you? Are we expected to simply take the premise of that at face value? I might well ask, If someone else seems to want something to do with you, why, then, shouldn't you accept yourself? The argument is a simple reflexive equivalent, but is actually stronger because it draws upon empirical observation rather than an unsupportable assumption like the first argument does. This is the hardest part. This is where the heavy lifting comes in. You can overcome this negative thinking, but you may have to become adversarial with a part of yourself in order to do it. Some part of you is going to have to stand up for the rest of you and tell the liar to fuck off. I don't have a formula for how to arrive at that personal watershed, but ultimately it will be a decision you make whether or not your conscious of making it, and an action you take whether or not you're aware of acting on it. I always keep coming back to the quote from Milton at the bottom of my signature here: The mind is its own place, and in itself / Can make a Heav'n of Hell, a Hell of Heav'n. I'm not going to pity you. I'm just going to wait for you to decide how you're going to live.
  6. I don't give a fig about sports. I find watching them tedious and dull. At the end of all that effort and strain, what have they accomplished? They've moved a small sphere or ovoid from one place to another, only to retrieve it afterward. Or thrown some object as far away as possible. Or ended up at the bottom of a hill (I saw that coming - gravity). Or run madly about in a circle. All in the service of doing the pointless thing more pointlessly than the other person. I find American football an appalling holdover from the gladiatorial excesses of the court of Caligula, and I see nothing beautiful about The Beautiful Game elsewhere, other than there appears to be less ending up in a heap than in American football, or intentional beating of people with sticks as in hockey (internationally). I confess I have always had some intrigue toward cricket, mainly owing to being an Anglophile, but also because it seemed more genteel and less spitty and ass-scratchy than baseball. As a morose school-age youth who suffered from exercise-induced asthma, I did not excel, or attempt to excel, or pantomime any attempt to excel at sports. In those horrid times when forced by Physical Education teachers (loathsome creatures - I condemn them wholesale as an entirely unnecessary blot on Western Civilization) to participate in team sports, I made myself as peripheral as possible. If it were baseball, I would engineer to be so far in the outfield that other participants looked like figurines in the distance. I do not play sports. I never have. With one exception - I fence. I picked it up as an undergraduate, and found that I'm not bad at it. I had no interest in going into competition with it, but I always enjoyed sparring. I think it's because it is the only sporting activity that fits my need for order and precision. The question you need to be asking yourself, however, is what kind of shape your nails are in, and are you using the right shade of polish to compliment your complexion?
  7. As a point of interest, my visit to the urologist (the doctor) was not uncomfortable at all today. Yet at the end of it, when it came time to schedule my follow-up appointment, sure enough, the receptionist tried to shunt me off onto one of their LNPs for the next appointment. She paused for a tic when I said, "No, thank you, I'll wait until the doctor is available." Which he was, at a time three days later on. Bear in mind, the subject of my visit was a discussion about a risk of prostate cancer, and the decisions I would need to make in terms of monitoring versus early biopsy to determine if there was an issue, etc. The potential is not high, but I am not trusting my potential cancer diagnosis, and the source of advice on which to base my next decisions, to a LNP. Just not. Sorry not sorry.
  8. @Iceberg - I say ‘crisis’ in a broad societal sense, but really what it amounts to is the NPs becoming a first line of triage of the mental health care on a community level because the problem is growing too large, by volume, for the doctors to manage it at their level. But MI doesn’t lend itself to triage in the way physical injury might, both because of the complexity of human psychology, and the scientific unknowns about the nature and function of the brain. You can’t ultimately set a brain like you would a broken arm. I’m not sure I entirely fit your description of me as a consumer of psychiatric care. Yes, I am able to pay to see my pdoc, but that ability comes at a significant cost to me - I live frugally on a government pension and I very consciously and deliberately do without some things in order to set aside the money for my psychiatric care. This is not really something I have an option about; without this level of care, my depression will kill me. It’s as simple as that.
  9. My only experience with mental health care providers who are not full Psychologist PhDs or Phychiatric MDs are the Licensed Clinical Social Workers my Ex insisted on engaging for our children when we first started looking for mental health care for them. I found every one of them useless in being able to assist two children on the edge of the Autism spectrum and coping with the beginnings of depression, anxiety, social phobia and ADHD. They were not, however, psychiatric NPs. My daughter sees my pdoc now, and I pay through the nose for it, even though I'm on a pension. Worth every penny. Nonetheless, yes, if my pdoc were to tell me one day that he was referring some of his patients out to a NP and I would be seeing that person (of either gender) I would reply, Au contraire, mon frére. I pay his fee out-of-pocket (he does not take my insurance) in order to pick his specially-educated brain, and I will accept no substitutes. The same would be true for any professional's services I engage. The proliferation of LNPs is occurring as a result of a growing shortage of fully qualified doctors - or rather, of a burgeoning population that is growing faster than the number of doctors available to service it. By necessity, these less-qualified people are taking up the slack because otherwise the need will be unmet. Governments are allowing qualification requirements to edge downward in order to meet the public need. In other words, it's a crisis. An argument will be heard that NPs are qualified to diagnose and prescribe. Yes - but they are not as qualified, and that is both inarguable, and the point. That doesn't mean people need a lesser quality of care, nor that medicine has become any easier or less complicated to practice. It takes roughly 11 postsecondary years to earn an MD. It takes 6-8 to become a LNP. Do I wish to trust my personal health to someone with 11 years of training and experience, or someone with as much as 5 years less training and experience? I'll take the 11-year package, please and thank you. It may be a bit more expensive, and I may have to get in line, but I don't mind paying for quality. It's my health, after all, and if you don't have your health - as they say - you don't have anything. I'm not going to settle for second-best when it comes to my physical and mental health. Perhaps it's because I came so close to nearly dying, and have medical incompetence to thank for it. (Actually, following on Gearhead's comment above, I'm much less selective about auto mechanics. I don't really see how a mechanic's driving ability would affect his engineering skills. The vast majority of people who work on passenger airliners aren't pilots, yet we still board aircraft. My maternal grandfather repaired military aircraft during World War II - and he couldn't fly a paper airplane.) I had a conversation with my daughter today on this very subject. She enjoys playing the Devil's Advocate, or at least enjoys needling me, I'm not sure which, but she said, "You realize you're not special, don't you? You're not better than all of the other people who would like to see the doctor, and he can't see everyone, so some people have to see the Nurse Practitioner. Why do you get to see the Doctor and they don't?" [Note: "You're not special" from one's own daughter - 20 years of therapy down the tubes in one fell swoop. How sharper than a serpent's tooth...] Because, I told her, I'm willing to wait my turn for it, pay extra for it, but above all, because I'm going to insist on it - in a modern medical environment where there are too many patients and not enough doctors, it becomes imperative that you become your own best advocate for your medical care. If you don't, you'll get walked over by someone else with more chutzpa, and they'll get the better medical care, they'll get the better treatment, and they'll be the ones to thrive while you simply cope. Would a psych NP have had the prescribing experience to have given me relief from my refractive, tenacious Double Depression a decade ago? I highly doubt that. My pdoc is a very experienced prescriber, and until him, no other pdoc had ever laid a glove on my condition. Why would I think that a NP with years less experience in diagnosis and practice would be able to do as well as this very seasoned professional? I wouldn't. No sensible person would, and there would be no sensible reason to. I recognize, mind you, that there are a number of reasons that our members here see psych NPs rather than full pdocs or tdocs, and it's not my place to say that that's a bad decision for them - if it's working, if they are satisfied that they are getting the best care available, then more power to them. It's just not the choice I would make for myself.
  10. My infectious disease specialist advised me to take one dose of Tylenol one hour before each vaccination, and a second dose six hours afterward. Apparently this helps to fend off unwanted side effects. Unlike Gears, I felt absolutely nothing, from either shot, and had no sign of any side effect. I'm not as eager to keep the mask, simply because I've never had any success at either monitoring or censoring my own expression. I gather that it doesn't do all that much; for many years people - lots of people - have told me that I remind them very much of the android Data from Star Trek. Intriguing.
  11. How odd. I wrote my previous response to this thread, above, almost a year ago to date. At that time, I reflected on the likely experience of a man seeing a female urologist, and for some reason made no mention of the fact that I had myself had that very experience only a year or so prior. What makes it doubly odd is that I have an appointment with my urologist on Friday - an appointment which had been scheduled for earlier by his office, but I asked that it be deferred until Friday because at the earlier appointment I had been scheduled to be seen not by the doctor but by the nurse practitioner working in his practice Who is a woman. A little background. A have been seen by this nurse practitioner before, at my last visit to the practice. I was not advised in advance, indeed not even until she entered the room, that the doctor himself would not be the one to examine me. She simply shows up and explains that she will be taking care of my appointment that day. The appointment concerned a rather personal matter involving my nether regions, and the examination ended with her inserting a gloved finger into my anus and probing about. I maintained a detached attitude of clinical practicality. So did she. It was a matter of medical business and necessity, was executed efficiently, and the entire affair was over quite quickly. Actually, rather more quickly than it probably would have been had I been seen by the doctor, because I did not feel inclined to ask her questions that I might otherwise have asked the doctor. I felt distinctly uncomfortable throughout, and was never able to shake it. The question is: To what degree did it have to do with her being female? Two other factors were at play. First, given the nature of the condition being dealt with, I was taken aback at being faced with having to discuss such a personal matter with a complete stranger without warning the moment she entered the room. And second, I do not see Licensed Nurse Practitioners if I have anything to say about it. A LNP is not a doctor. I do not consider a LNP an acceptable stand-in when I have come to see a doctor and am paying to see a doctor, regardless of whether that LNP is male or female. So the combination of those two things definitely set me back. But I'm not absolutely certain I can say with honesty that I did not feel at least a small amount of discomfort at not being given a choice as to whether a woman was going to examine that particular aspect of my anatomy. I have no issue whatever with female doctors in general. I see a number of specialists who are women, and a doctor's gender isn't normally a factor I consider when deciding to see one. This case, however, well. Like I say. Odd.
  12. I’ve never understood the truck mud flaps featuring the ‘mud flap girl’ or ‘naked lady’ metal weights on the bottom (sometimes, regrettably, referred to as ‘chick weights’). Though I am not a woman, I have always thought that as a self-marketing tactic, those things can only be counterproductive, garishly and boorishly signalling: Hey Ladies! Creep here! Stay far, far away! Not only does he like to leer at naked women, he thinks their place is down in the mud with the flaps. He probably also belches.
  13. The thing is, there's no question that the various flavors of MI play hell with achieving and maintaining relationships, particularly the kind of close, intimate relationships that require a person to be on a stable mental footing in order to be a fully participating partner and pulling one's weight in reciprocally caring for a partner's needs. These boards are full of the plaintive cries of members struggling to meet basic needs for human companionship, relationship, and even contact. Some of us struggle to find people who even understand us, let alone harmonize with use well enough to form lasting bonds. Nor will I argue that Autistic people don't have difficulty with social interaction in general (it's a feature) and with relationships in particular - statistics suggest that 70% of Autistic/Neurotypical marriages end in failure. Like mine. None of that means we need other people any less, or desire their company any less, or have any lesser understanding of what it means to have someone special. Indeed, one might argue that the difficulty in obtaining those necessary things sharpens an appreciation of them. The problem with the premise of the thread is that it's rooted in stigma - it starts out with an implied assumption that it's what we are that causes the problem, not the illness we have to deal with. The issue radiates from the choice of the words "are normal" - an assignation that we are either normal or we are not (abnormal). What I find most shocking is that this expression of stigma comes from someone on our side of the fence, a person struggling with MI. Indefensible and unacceptable. As a platform for discussing the real difficulties we all face in navigating a social world hostile to those with MI, this thread still has some merit, and I encourage that discussion to continue as an open forum inclusive of any diagnosis, regardless of the intent of the original poster. As an arena for opining on who among us is socially abnormal, it's done.
  14. Your posts in this thread have made that abundantly clear. By all means return to those forums and take your breathtakingly odious attitudes with you. We will not tolerate them any further here. Please be so good as to not let the door hit you in the ass on your way out; we would prefer not to scuff the finish. Cerberus Moderator
  15. Really, put down the shovel and stop digging. You didn't want to be exclusive, you say, but you really should have been more clear that you only wanted opinions from people you consider normal? Not the 'unnecessary' people like the ones with Autism? So you're essentially saying you want to be either inclusively exclusive, or exclusively inclusive, neither of which is the way we roll here. Your assertion that "normal people" are 'the ones without mental illness' would brand every one of us here as abnormal, and I reject that. As I said above, mental illness is what we have, not what we are. We are normal people with MI, just as we might be normal people with diabetes, or obesity, or a lost limb, or blindness or deafness, or any other chronic condition that makes daily life more challenging. Stigma thrives when we allow ourselves and others to define us by our MI, so we cannot. All in all, I don't think 'normal' is working for you in getting your point across. I recommend you choose a different adjective. There's a difference between your usage of it and his. He used it after the fact to explain that although he accepted that people might have been offended by what he said, he had not intended it to be offensive. You used it aforethought as a fig leaf for what you knew would be offensive before you said it - and then doubled down in the next post by actually explaining that you did it intentionally. Nonetheless, I will give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you simply phrased things poorly, or, as they say in the political sphere, 'misspoke'. I suggest we leave it at that.
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