Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Status Update

Unlike Rebecca, I don't suddenly have health insurance, but I did get screened last week by a foundation that offers low-cost mental health services to people who can't afford healthcare. For over a year now I've felt like something is wrong with me: I have trouble focusing, I lack energy and the desire to do most things, and generally my brain hasn't been working properly. There's more to this, but I don't feel like going into that right now and it's tangential to what I want to say. 

I also had to answer a lot of questions, but in my case I was asked those questions by a human being who listened and gave a damn. These were the usual questions which I could see through immediately, i.e. "This is the eating disorder question. This is the domestic/sexual abuse question. This is the mania question" and so forth, until we got to the expected suicide question where I was asked I was asked some version of "Do you ever think about killing yourself?"

In my opinion, the trick to these sorts of thing, is to say "Yes, and..." or "Yes, because.." instead of just yes or no. I mean, I could have absolutely just said "no", but I don't like lying to doctors unless it's absolutely necessary, partly because I want to build trust between us and partly because I don't want to be that idiot who hides something which ends up being the critical clue to what's bothering me. 

My response, then, was to say "I think that everyone has had thoughts like this. It's just part of being human. The real question is 'Have I ever attempted or seriously considered suicide' and the answer to that is No." Because the listener was a human who cared and not a bureaucratic drone filling out a form, she nodded in agreement with me. So having established the "Yes, and" baseline, I knew she would be receptive when we got to the obligatory gun question which I knew was coming. 

As it turns out, the question itself did a lot of heavy lifting for me when it asked "Do you have access to means of harming yourself or others?" because 'means' is such a wonderfully vague word. My response was "I'm an adult. I have access to all sorts of things that can harm people, like knives, matches, gasoline, cars, etc. Anyone who says otherwise is either a child, in jail, or a liar." I am very proud of that answer, because I answered the question 100% honestly while never saying the "G word."

They haven't gotten back to me yet, but I hope to hear from them this week; I'd like to get medication or counseling or whatever so that I can get back to feeling more like myself. 

Other than that, I don't have a lot to report. We're still dealing with the after-effects of my father's death, although that's mainly donating or disposing of his hoarded crap. Mom used some of his life insurance payout to get the master suite habitable, and I moved in there back in... March? April? I don't recall. Time has been really fluid for me lately. I'm still not 100% moved in but I'd say I'm at least 75% there, with the important thing shifted; once we finish getting rid of the last of dad's junk I can concentrate on sorting out all the crap in my old room and either moving it, storing it, or throwing it away as needed. 

In hindsight those are all pretty big things which I should have blogged about earlier, but see my above complaint regarding lack of creativity, energy, and focus. I'd really like to get back to feeling well enough to want to blog on a daily basis. 

I probably have other news I should report but my mind isn't cooperating. If you're interested, drop a comment below and I'll answer to the best of my ability. 

Goodnight, and don't let the bastards grind you down. 

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