How it’s shaped me

In my last more anecdotal post in April, I quite excitedly talked about the new house I was moving into with 5 other girls.  Well, as with a lot of things, I spoke too soon.  The following day, I went to the house again to sign the tenancy agreement and pay the deposit.  It was only on then it transpired this house wasn’t what it seemed the day before. The landlord had failed to mention the day before that he lived and worked at the house as well.  A 40 something year old man with a group of 20 something girls. A man who had a partner and new born baby in a house 200 yards from this shared house. Alarm bells started ringing and I backed out of the situation straight away.  As such, with only 24 hours to go before I had to be out of the house share I was in, I stubbornly moved into social service housing.  Determined to stay in Manchester where there are greater opportunities for jobs and friends for support, instead of admitting defeat and moving back to the parents to get stabilised (again).

I was thinking this morning, why that house share situation with the landlord bothered me so much and if I would have reacted in such a way before.  The answer is I don’t think I would have. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve reluctantly admitted that living back with my folks for a wee while is the best thing for me at the minute.  Living in that social service house with no work of a temporary or permanent nature coming through hit me hard.  With nothing to keep me busy, distract me or any progress with job/finances I hit a wall and felt the black dog had finally caught up with me.  Self-harm, self-medicating and seeking comfort/closeness in the wrong places only made me feel worse.  This has lead me to write this post, wondering what else has changed within me and how this whole 7 month (and counting…) long fiasco has shaped me.

  • Its because of November I find it difficult to trust new people and to trust and take for granted that others are being genuine
  • It’s because of November, instead of a ‘gaydar’ I now have a ‘creepdar’, meaning I’m pretty much suspicious of everyone, reading ulterior motives into a lot of things people do or say
  • Its because of November I’ve had to leave 2 jobs – the first in the Lakes what was to be a dream job and that of a new exciting chapter in my life.  The second a venue who treated me horribly and showed no signs of compassion or basic humanity when I was shaken from a near second attack only months after the first
  • It is because of November, my finances are screwed.  Having not held down a steady job since October things are pretty dia, something I know will have a knock-on impact on my future i.e. buying a new car, a house, a business, a loan, or even just a much needed holiday.
  • It is because of November I have been in such a poor state of mind I have ignored bills and debts.  I have had to fight bailiffs off my parent’s door and to keep my car
  • It is because of November I am STILL struggling to find work, trying to change industry, having to try and explain to potential new employers my current situation and why my last 2 jobs both lasted such a short time
  • It is  because of November I am seeking solace in sex but finding I’m emotionally numb and I’m doing it in lieu of a more serious relationship which as much as I crave; the thought terrifies me, being so vulnerable with someone (and when do you tell someone new to your life about everything that’s gone on without scaring them!?)
  • It is because of November I am now over sensitive/hyper sensitivity in other situations, possibly seeing things others wouldn’t have picked up (like the creepy landlord living with the young girls) and sometimes finding myself reading into things that aren’t necessarily there
  • It is because of November I have a severe lack in confidence coming from the sex thing, and also the difficulties I’m facing in finding a job.  Changing industries is hard
  • It is because of November I now find it difficult to go places on my own, something I really do my best to hide
  • It is because of November I now feel anxious and over-aware walking anywhere on my own in the dark
  • It is because of November I have developed a mild agoraphobia when I’m on my own. If I spend too long in one place, it becomes difficult to leave the security of that room/building – something that isn’t an issue when I’m with someone else
  • It is because of November my mood swings are a lot more frequent and pronounced – going from hyper ‘non stop talking and excitable like a puppy’ to really quiet, awkward and uncomfortable, to welling up, to being snappy and everything in between, all within the space of half an hour.  I’m an emotional lottery
  • It is because of November people in my life have fallen by the way side, not being able to handle what I’ve been through
  • It is because of November I have dark and twisted thoughts that I never experienced before; in dreams at night, day dreams when I’m on my own, and when I’m watching porn
  • It is because of November, I am 28 years old with no money, no job and back living at my parents, treading water with my mental health and really trying to make the best decisions possible for moving on

On of the plus side though, there is one silver lining.  It is because of November, I have realised how lucky I am to have such a fucking fantastic support network around me.  95% of my relationships with friends and family are closer than ever before.  Even people I’ve met over the last couple of months have firmly taken me under their wings and pretty much adopted me.  Everyone rallying round making sure I’m fed, watered, wined, hugged, making sure I get out the house, inviting me to different events, and ultimately being awesome people to talk to.  These people all deserve medals.

I’m hoping once my counselling finally starts, some of these knots will be unravelled and the result of me won’t have changed too much from the original

 

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