So, the voice in my head is an asshole.

Discussion in 'Braaaaiiiinnnns...' started by CarnelianCoyote, Mar 24, 2018.

  1. I'm still a little fuzzy on the correct social usage of the Spoiler function around here except for literal spoilers and large graphics, so if something needs hiding, please let me know?

    Not like internal narrator voice in my head or intrusive thoughts voice in my head. Like. Separate voice, recognizably different intonation on her words, different personality and goals than mine.
    Most of her goals right now seem to be "play with favorite toy and make it suffer."

    She showed up for the first time I think (don't have an exact record because I didn't trust it to my journals) in my preteens, hung around for a few years being... probably comorbid with depression and mixing in interesting ways with my attempting very clumsily to figure shit out religiously, with zero resources to do so, in a very conservative and possibly abusive church. Then she went - either absent or quiet for a number of years. There have been thought patterns sometimes that matched her style but not so much explicitly her talking to me.

    She went on the air again at some point last year, and got loud after I returned from a failed out-of-town move I had been putting a lot of hope in as a way to get out of my parents' house and to a town less politically inimical and with more opportunities for me than my hometown, which was followed by an increase in anxiety, an increase in sleeping on schedules calculated to help me avoid the world, and a near-fatal illness which left me with significant uninsured hospital bills. I think she and the rest of my brain-nope might have some kind of feedback loop going, or at the least anxiety and possibly-depression (a lot of Tired mixed with a thinly-supported poor baseline opinion of myself and a hell of a lot of moods in which I "don't deserve" basic household resources and/or affection from friends) seem to amp up as she escalates the harshness of her tactics.


    She likes personal insults ranging from petty comments about weight and feeding to attempting to construct arguments in support of my being a terrible human, a terrible daughter, and a failure at various bits of life.

    She's a big fan of visualization, sometimes very blurry impressions like an out-of-focus camera or a faded memory and sometimes very detailed things closer to the quality of a clear recent memory or a vivid dream. These can be a series of snapshots or something more like bits of video, brain-gifs if you will. When I was younger her pictures tended to be a mix of my being trapped and restrained in different ways or my doing things to myself or destroying other people's property or both at once - window-glass and dishes for instance on the latter. Recently there's been a more concentrated focus in her imagery on her doing things to me, mixes of elaborate violence and forcing me into situations that unnerve me.

    She mixes it up a lot, interspersing flashes of pictures with the insults to distract me and shut me up if I try to argue back, or escalating from insults into visuals of violence, with the implied or stated reasoning that the ways she is "hurting" me are my punishment. (Clarification: her "voice" and the visuals are the only sensory things she can imitate decently. She can imply pain, or temperatures, or foul tastes and smells, sort of pushing ideas and memories at me to remind me what could be happening, but she can't make anything seem realistic or vivid there unless she can talk me into doing her work for her - such as threatening and ordering me to get me into a stress position and having me hold it while she plays in my head. In other words, no dice unless I'm really fragile or really hating myself.)

    She's been known to threaten to hurt my friends, or to threaten to use me to hurt my friends. This reliably produces rapid freakouts but also has a higher rate of getting me fighting mad and trying very hard to throttle her than her other tactics, which may be why she doesn't deploy it more frequently - I get the strong impression despair is tastier to her than anger.


    I'm not actually sure what she is. Figured her for an actual person, a spiritual entity, when she first showed up, and it's still easiest to think of her in those terms, but I'm willing to consider alternate personality born during my first round of depression, or some serious wires getting crossed in the bits of my brain I use to model and chat with characters I use in art and stories, as definite possibilities. All I'm really certain of is that if I made her, it was without my knowledge and against my will, and that if she wants to blame me for her thoughts existing she's being pretty unfair about it. :p And I would really like her to shut up, or at least be more manageable.

    It's not that I'm not fighting her. I am. And sometimes I find or somebody helps me find a trick that works. But nothing works constantly, and hardly anything works consistently. And not letting her win a fight is draining, and letting her win a fight is draining, and ignoring her is tricky and also draining and requires finding something my brain finds really vivid to block her out and focusing only on it which if I have anything else to do with myself is not exactly sustainable for long. And not strictly ignoring her, but keeping moving anyway, often means she'll just escalate until she gets my attention back.

    When she started coming around again I would think it was weird and bad if I heard from her twice in a day. These days if I go a whole day or more without hearing from her at all it's like a vacation, and sometimes she'll attack sharply two or three times in a day between low-key murmuring, getting under my skin enough to have me crying and hyperventilating and then keeping it up for an hour or more.

    I'm not sure what her goals are, however far she has them, other than making me hurt. There have been times she's toyed with suicide-baiting as an apparent endgame, and there have been times she's talked about making me her pet and training me, wanting to get me so I'll drop what I'm doing for her, self-harm for her, abandon people I love and make moral compromises on her say-so. I'm not sure what she wants, or if she wants - if she was just a persona in my head would she have coherent goals? - but I know that one way or another I wouldn't be me or be somebody I felt was worth being if I let her win the war.
    • Witnessed x 7
  2. ...feel a little out of my depth posting this here honestly. I've got a short list of people who know she exists in as many words, shorter who know much about what she's like and that she's active now. But even if wording things is tricky and it's a little strange to tell this much to mostly strangers I need any sort of support I can get right now. Sometimes I think I've almost got it handled and sometimes she proves me thoroughly wrong as to whether it can get worse.
    • Witnessed x 5
  3. goldenflowertea

    goldenflowertea shy trash monarch

    Brave Coyote. Glad you posted this.
    • Agree x 3
    • Like x 1
  4. ...Things got very weird on that front tonight. I am still quite uncomfortable talking details even for loved ones in possession of the facts so, probably not doing so here, except to say she made a threat it was extremely hard for me to ignore and which I wasn't quite sure enough she couldn't carry out, she ordered me around for a bit on the strength of that threat, and we experienced a fortunate interruption before things could get worse.

    I strongly dislike how things can escalate and am not certain I will never be naive enough to fall for her tricks again. I need help. I'm going to try to get an appointment with a gp to discuss a psych referral so Medicaid will pay, and if that doesn't work or if the timing is longer than I believe I can handle... I'm thinking I may take myself to the local mental hospital and see if they'd be willing to give me an intake interview. I am very, very reluctant to take that step because I place a high value on my liberty and consider the existing limitations on that to already be one of the stressors allowing her to operate, and also find it intensely difficult to nerve myself up to speak of her in any detail in person. But I urgently need to kick her ass or at least get more foolproof management tools to corral her before she does me an actual harm; and while I may not always be sure "if she's a problem for a doctor or a priest" in a friend's words, I need to take as many options in hand as I can.
    • Witnessed x 4
  5. ...tired and rattled and pissed I let her get to me so thoroughly, and wishing I could hide in a nice cozy den on a semi-permanent basis.
    • Witnessed x 3
  6. I think I need to stop locking my door.

    That's not a fun call to make. Having the ability to enforce my privacy, to be *sure*, is Very Good. But for most purposes closing it is enough. And if. If she hurts me or she makes it tricky to move, I need to know that even if I would be almost as scared of being found like that by somebody I only half-trust as of being in danger in the first place, that I am capable of calling for help and knowing the help could come.

    So goodbye to locks, at least until things with her are managed.

    ...GP appointment is tomorrow afternoon. Fingers crossed it gets somewhere, and that either I can draft a good written explanation or don't get too nervous to speak coherently, or preferably both.
    • Witnessed x 2
  7. Got to gp. Got a referral, should be able to get help in a week or less.

    Resident asshole was loud this morning about what *other* bits of my brain could get fucked in the process of trying to treat her, but I know I need to do this.

    I'm going to find a way to deal.
    • Like x 5
  8. Alaspooralice

    Alaspooralice An actual trash fire

    Congrats on your referral! Hopefully you can get the help and tools you need! I don't know you but taking that step is a big deal and I'm proud of you anyway. Best of luck!
    • Agree x 4
    • Like x 1
  9. Thank you!
    • Like x 2
  10. ...well. More than a week as it turns out. But less than a month. I think I can hang in there, knowing when.
    • Like x 2
    • Witnessed x 1
  11. Four days out from reinforcements.

    She's not consistently sharpish, but it's getting to where "I slept well, didn't watch body-horror on my way into sleep, and made it to the afternoon with no nagging in my head" feels like bit of a vacation in itself so, not great there. And sometimes... Sometimes feeling very ground down. Couple nights ago I was seriously worried if I didn't finish a project and get to bed earlier than I'd planned on I might wind up hurting myself with a hot glue gun. And I spent a disproportionate amount of my older sister's last day in town before she moved for a new job too distracted by brain-bitch's constantly chanting "you should die" at me to be able to enjoy a lot of the hangout. I don't even think she *wants* me to die. She likes having a living plaything. She just likes playing *more* when I'm too down to fight back properly.

    ...It hasn't been all awful. I still *want to live*, want to fight this off and make art and see my people and hear good music, cook good food, watch the sky and the flowers change, read my library finds. Find out what happens next. But sometimes I'm exhausted and want to curl up in a ball for awhile, and sometimes not Letting Her Play takes up much more of my brain than I want it to.

    I'm keenly glad to know there *are* probably ways to muffle it or make it stop, and people who cab help me find them. It's hard to believe I *wanted* to try to fight this out privately, not being able to see and end to it would be... Would be kinda hellish right now.

    I have promised that if things ever escalate to where I can't find reasons to keep moving anymore, to where I'm really earnestly willing to give up to her or to terminate myself to make it stop, I *will* turn myself in at the mental hospital. Both so my people don't lose me to her, and... I have to know that one way or another my life won't be a win for her. I have to.
    • Witnessed x 5
  12. Alaspooralice

    Alaspooralice An actual trash fire

    I'm really proud of you for being able to make that promise! That is a really hard thing to do! I hope it doesn't come to that, but having a backup plan is a really good idea. Hopefully these last four days until you can see someone are gonna be less stressful!
    • Agree x 4
  13. ...done two versions of the so what's up with you interview apparently and filled out some paperwork, but no farther than that, diagnosis still inexact and no meds. Supposed to get some tests done through a hospital lab, blood work among other things. She's been fairly horrifying. Not so much on the ordering around, as a rule, but just. Really high-frequency attacks with a lot of honing in on when I'm fragile and trying to get to sleep, a lot of squicky and/or sexualized violence and demeaning imagery about having me in her complete control lately... think... think five series of imagery plus verbal flyting today. so. really pretty fragile, burying my head in whatever kind of distractions I can manage and hoping to stabilize somewhat before bed, but not sure how well that shall work. And not... Not sure how well I answered some of the questions doc was asking, got a little verbally freezy because complex and poorly-processed emotions don't translate to simple and rapid responses.

    Feel like I'm being weak, breaking up under her. But. Have been reassured actually is a nasty mess, the crud she'd doing to me [want stronger wording but she's apparently decided to punish for swearing today and not in the mood to pick a fight]... anything breaks under enough pressure, just... do what I can, keep looking for backup to help me do more.
    • Witnessed x 2
  14. There's ah. There's been a development. It's complicated but it's positive. I would be sonewhat surprised if she was as hard on me in the future as she has been in the past.

    Also as of literally today I finally have things in order with my meds, at least the first round of them, which is another good sign.
    • Like x 2
    • Witnessed x 1
  15. Alaspooralice

    Alaspooralice An actual trash fire

    I hope everything goes well!
    • Like x 1
  16. Thank you!
  17. ...I locked the door again last night. :)
    So. Reasonable confidence I shan't be in harm's way anytime soon, at least not to the extent of physical risk.
    • Like x 2
  18. SHE's still behaving but well. Doc's definitely right about there being depression separate from her, and also anxiety's still a thing, so, brain still keeping life interesting. :p Also there was a thing my brain did in reaction to her which continues to have repercussions at times... And... I sorta think I might have dissacociated for a bit this afternoon? In the my body not feeling like mine sense? Which is very much not typical for me.

    On the upside! We're still finding out how this batch of meds works for me, not quite far enough into timeframe that they've reached full saturation or whatever, so, some things may still look up.
    • Witnessed x 4
  19. Jove

    Jove perpetually exhausted pigeon

    Excellent to hear! I don’t know you, but I’m rooting for you.
    • Agree x 5
    • Like x 1
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