Amayah Rees

@jojoba | contributor
Autistic woman, mother and greyhound lover
Community Voices

So here's the thing I live in Canada! And the rules are of your Vaccinated and you get covid! you have to isolate yourself for five days and wear a mask for another five days indoors.
And now I'm scared to be around this person and I don't know how to tell them.
Because I don't want to hurt there felling and wait until after 14 days.
And they want me to see them next week but I don't know there not contagious after eight days anymore and I'm might be seeing them on the ten day.
I don't know what to do I don't want to tell anyone because it's not like I was near the person that will be different i was.
Now I'm even more scared.
But I like I said I don't want to hurt the person feelings.
So do I go and see them and they told me there 90% better . #AnxietyAttack #Anxiety

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Community Voices

TRUE or FALSE: I am comfortable in my own skin.

<p>TRUE or FALSE: I am comfortable in my own skin.</p>
116 people are talking about this
Amayah Rees
Amayah Rees @jojoba
contributor

Worrying Day and Night as Someone With Depression

When I first thought about writing this, I assumed I would start with the morning, after all, that’s when the day begins. The more I thought about it, I realized the night affected my mornings so much, that in a way, my day begins at night when I go to bed. So that’s where I’ll start! Most nights I go to bed eagerly. I’m tired. I’m so, so tired. I can barely stay awake and I feel like I could sleep for 100 years. I crawl into bed. And it begins. “Why can’t you be more like your siblings?” “Your siblings were such a pleasure to teach.” “Are you sure you’re really related?” “You stick out like a sore thumb” “Your younger sister can do it, why can’t you?” I scold myself, “why can’t I at least blend in?” “Why do I have to be like this?” I toss and turn, willing myself to fall asleep, tears running down my face. It has been hours of this kind of back and forth in my mind. I wonder if I should take a sleeping tablet and quickly tell myself I’m not going to ask for another script once this runs out. I’m not going through the questions and the accusations of drug-seeking behavior again. I’ll just have to learn to sleep like everyone else. Even though I’ve made my decision, it all replays in my mind. “Are you really having trouble sleeping or do you just want people to think you’re having trouble sleeping?” “Are you really having trouble sleeping or do you stay awake to get company?” “Do you sell your sleeping tablets?” “You know I can put you on a list that would prevent any doctor from ever prescribing you sleeping tablets again if I wanted to?” Once again, I scold myself, “just be normal and sleep.” “Why did I ask for help in the first place?” This back and forth goes on for a couple more hours. Eventually I drift off to sleep, tears staining my face. At 7:15 a.m. my alarm goes off. I want to cry. I feel hungover from the lack of sleep and the emotional exhaustion. I’m so exhausted from the night before that I can’t imagine how I’m going to cope with a whole day. I don’t want to be awake. I don’t want to get out of bed. I don’t want to do anything. The only reason I get up is because I have a daughter to care for. I need to get her ready and take her to school. I tell myself I can go back to bed as soon as I get home if I want to. I take my daughter to school and I’m home before 9 a.m. At 9 a.m. I go back to bed. I’m so exhausted from the night before. Even if I wasn’t exhausted from that, I’d still be exhausted. I’ve been exhausted for 20 years now. I fall asleep for a couple of hours. I wake up in a cold sweat, shaking. I’ve had another nightmare. I sit up, rocking backwards and forwards, trying to calm my mind down. I check that my alarm is set for 2:30 p.m. to pick my daughter up from school. It’s set for 2:30. But was it am or pm? I don’t remember seeing pm. I better check again. OK, it’s definitely 2:30 p.m. I put my phone to the side. Is the volume turned on though? I better check the volume is on! OK, the volume is on. I put my phone to the side. If I leave my phone there is my blanket going to fall on top of it and muffle the sound of the alarm? If I miss the alarm and don’t collect my daughter, the school might phone CPS on me. My baby would be so scared! Why can’t I just be a better mum? Why can’t I be like other mums? Normal mums? This back and forth continues until it’s time to pick my daughter up from school. We get home from school at 3:30 p.m. I need to spend time with my daughter. I try to be as engaged as possible for the next four hours until she goes to bed. Staying awake feels like torture but I love my daughter and want to be with her, so I stay awake. I remember what the nurses in the psych hospital told me: “if you ever have children, they’ll be so embarrassed of you.” I tell myself, “I need to do better, I need to be better.” “I wish I was a better mum.” This back and forth continues until bed. And it all begins again.

Amayah Rees
Amayah Rees @jojoba
contributor

My Church Perpetuated My Abuse and Shamed Me for My Depression

At 15, I was diagnosed with depression. I had grown up and continued to live in an abusive household, so this diagnosis came as no surprise. I was terrified of my dad’s reaction to the diagnosis. I knew he would be scared people would ask questions about what was happening at home. Dad was an elder at our church. My general practitioner (GP) was also an elder at our church. This overlap between my medical care and my church life not only allowed the abuse to continue, it perpetuated the abuse. My church found out about my depression, and as circumstances worsened, so did my self-harm and suicidal ideation. My name and situation were often raised as prayer points. I was in everyone’s “thoughts.” This did not feel genuine to me. Some people at church were angry with me for what I was putting my parents through. I wasn’t an only child, and to them, I shouldn’t have been demanding my parents’ time and attention. We were not well off and I should not have been adding unnecessary expenses for medication and appointments. Others openly questioned my faith. I mean, can you really be a Christian and be depressed? If I trusted God, I would have nothing to despair, in fact, my heart would be full of joy. Still others questioned my salvation; could someone who claims to be a Christian and self-harms, go to heaven? Wasn’t that against the Bible? Were the children at church safe from me? Maybe I was dangerous now. I hurt myself, so that must mean I’m going to hurt other people. There were so many questions and so many of them asked very openly and loudly. All but none of the questions were asked to me. People would ask the GP for his opinion and he would freely give it. There were times during communion one of the elders, usually the GP, would decide whether or not I was permitted to partake of communion, despite the fact I was a member. People were sympathetic to my parents and to my siblings. I was causing them all a lot of stress and they didn’t deserve it. There were occasions when I was in hospital and I would receive the obligatory visit from someone of standing within the church. These visits usually consisted of a Bible reading, prayer and then the criticism. If I would just be a better Christian, this could be my last hospital admission. Apart from these coldhearted visits, I was largely ignored by the church. It was as though my parents were struggling with depression, and not me. My parents would keep me informed of who said what about me at church. This made me feel even more alone. If people cared enough to say something to my parents, why couldn’t they make the effort to say it to me? Why couldn’t they just acknowledge my existence? I felt so invisible. I was a child. A child struggling with severe depression. I wasn’t offered any comfort, compassion or gentleness. Growing up in the church, I had always assumed I would be supported; that’s what a church family does, isn’t it? Instead, I felt isolated, judged and worthy of punishment. Feelings of shame still overwhelm me at times. For years I struggled with feelings of having disappointed the church, for being the name of the church into disrepute so to speak. I was so embarrassed and so ashamed of myself, I actually stopped telling people I was a Christian or that I went to church. Who would believe someone like me? My church questioned my worthiness to be called a Christian. This treatment continued for over five years. So much mental and emotional damage was caused by my experience in that church and it still haunts me today, remaining a major contributor to my post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Thankfully, I found my way out of that church. I found myself and realized what had happened there was so very wrong. Not everything that happens in a church is Christian. Not all Christians are Christian. I did not deserve to be treated like that. I have since found a loving and supportive church family and knowing churches like this exist, goes a long way toward healing my heart.

Community Voices

What color is your mental health today?

<p>What color is your <a href="https://themighty.com/topic/mental-health/?label=mental health" class="tm-embed-link  tm-autolink health-map" data-id="5b23ce5800553f33fe98c3a3" data-name="mental health" title="mental health" target="_blank">mental health</a> today?</p>
95 people are talking about this
Amayah Rees
Amayah Rees @jojoba
contributor

When You Have a Lifelong Struggle With PTSD and Depression

A lot of people can pinpoint a time when they lost their mental health. When depression or anxiety began. I’ve heard people wish their life could go back to the way it was before, the way it used to be. Each time I’ve seen a new psychologist, psychiatrist, occupational therapist etc., they have asked when it all began. How old was I? What was I doing at the time? How did I know something was wrong? I’ve never been able to answer those questions, not to the practitioners satisfaction anyway. You see, there was no “before.” My earliest memories are of abuse, which resulted in hypervigilence, anxiety, depression and self-harm. That was my life. And I hated it. I wasn’t a happy child. I wasn’t a confident child. I didn’t do well at school. I didn’t have friends. I wasn’t capable of socializing. I was different. I didn’t fit in. I was a very serious child. I was overly concerned about cancer, the war in Iraq and the end of the world. Most of these issues were largely the result of trauma and the resulting post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As I got older, my depression gradually became worse. There came a point when the PTSD combined with the depression left me unable to function. I dropped out of school in year 11 to sleep all day on the couch. That was my existence for several years. That was the extent to which I could function. My mental health continued to deteriorate for many years, despite medication and therapy (more trauma was added by “professionals” trying to “help” me, so obviously that didn’t help). Sometimes, if I was lucky, it would plateau for a bit. I can’t pinpoint a time when it all happened. I can pinpoint a time when it became worse, but I feel that for the most part, I was born this way because I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t this way. I’m nearly 40 years old now and there is no before and there has been no after. I have no “before” to hold on to and no “after” to keep my hope alive. So while some people wish they could go back to “before,” all I can do is wish that I had a “before.” I wish I had a “normal” part of my life or at least a part where I felt normal. I like to imagine that maybe I’ll have an “after,” but as the years continue to pass, I lose hope.

Amayah Rees
Amayah Rees @jojoba
contributor

When You Have a Lifelong Struggle With PTSD and Depression

A lot of people can pinpoint a time when they lost their mental health. When depression or anxiety began. I’ve heard people wish their life could go back to the way it was before, the way it used to be. Each time I’ve seen a new psychologist, psychiatrist, occupational therapist etc., they have asked when it all began. How old was I? What was I doing at the time? How did I know something was wrong? I’ve never been able to answer those questions, not to the practitioners satisfaction anyway. You see, there was no “before.” My earliest memories are of abuse, which resulted in hypervigilence, anxiety, depression and self-harm. That was my life. And I hated it. I wasn’t a happy child. I wasn’t a confident child. I didn’t do well at school. I didn’t have friends. I wasn’t capable of socializing. I was different. I didn’t fit in. I was a very serious child. I was overly concerned about cancer, the war in Iraq and the end of the world. Most of these issues were largely the result of trauma and the resulting post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As I got older, my depression gradually became worse. There came a point when the PTSD combined with the depression left me unable to function. I dropped out of school in year 11 to sleep all day on the couch. That was my existence for several years. That was the extent to which I could function. My mental health continued to deteriorate for many years, despite medication and therapy (more trauma was added by “professionals” trying to “help” me, so obviously that didn’t help). Sometimes, if I was lucky, it would plateau for a bit. I can’t pinpoint a time when it all happened. I can pinpoint a time when it became worse, but I feel that for the most part, I was born this way because I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t this way. I’m nearly 40 years old now and there is no before and there has been no after. I have no “before” to hold on to and no “after” to keep my hope alive. So while some people wish they could go back to “before,” all I can do is wish that I had a “before.” I wish I had a “normal” part of my life or at least a part where I felt normal. I like to imagine that maybe I’ll have an “after,” but as the years continue to pass, I lose hope.

Amayah Rees
Amayah Rees @jojoba
contributor

When You Have a Lifelong Struggle With PTSD and Depression

A lot of people can pinpoint a time when they lost their mental health. When depression or anxiety began. I’ve heard people wish their life could go back to the way it was before, the way it used to be. Each time I’ve seen a new psychologist, psychiatrist, occupational therapist etc., they have asked when it all began. How old was I? What was I doing at the time? How did I know something was wrong? I’ve never been able to answer those questions, not to the practitioners satisfaction anyway. You see, there was no “before.” My earliest memories are of abuse, which resulted in hypervigilence, anxiety, depression and self-harm. That was my life. And I hated it. I wasn’t a happy child. I wasn’t a confident child. I didn’t do well at school. I didn’t have friends. I wasn’t capable of socializing. I was different. I didn’t fit in. I was a very serious child. I was overly concerned about cancer, the war in Iraq and the end of the world. Most of these issues were largely the result of trauma and the resulting post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As I got older, my depression gradually became worse. There came a point when the PTSD combined with the depression left me unable to function. I dropped out of school in year 11 to sleep all day on the couch. That was my existence for several years. That was the extent to which I could function. My mental health continued to deteriorate for many years, despite medication and therapy (more trauma was added by “professionals” trying to “help” me, so obviously that didn’t help). Sometimes, if I was lucky, it would plateau for a bit. I can’t pinpoint a time when it all happened. I can pinpoint a time when it became worse, but I feel that for the most part, I was born this way because I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t this way. I’m nearly 40 years old now and there is no before and there has been no after. I have no “before” to hold on to and no “after” to keep my hope alive. So while some people wish they could go back to “before,” all I can do is wish that I had a “before.” I wish I had a “normal” part of my life or at least a part where I felt normal. I like to imagine that maybe I’ll have an “after,” but as the years continue to pass, I lose hope.

Amayah Rees
Amayah Rees @jojoba
contributor

When You Have a Lifelong Struggle With PTSD and Depression

A lot of people can pinpoint a time when they lost their mental health. When depression or anxiety began. I’ve heard people wish their life could go back to the way it was before, the way it used to be. Each time I’ve seen a new psychologist, psychiatrist, occupational therapist etc., they have asked when it all began. How old was I? What was I doing at the time? How did I know something was wrong? I’ve never been able to answer those questions, not to the practitioners satisfaction anyway. You see, there was no “before.” My earliest memories are of abuse, which resulted in hypervigilence, anxiety, depression and self-harm. That was my life. And I hated it. I wasn’t a happy child. I wasn’t a confident child. I didn’t do well at school. I didn’t have friends. I wasn’t capable of socializing. I was different. I didn’t fit in. I was a very serious child. I was overly concerned about cancer, the war in Iraq and the end of the world. Most of these issues were largely the result of trauma and the resulting post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As I got older, my depression gradually became worse. There came a point when the PTSD combined with the depression left me unable to function. I dropped out of school in year 11 to sleep all day on the couch. That was my existence for several years. That was the extent to which I could function. My mental health continued to deteriorate for many years, despite medication and therapy (more trauma was added by “professionals” trying to “help” me, so obviously that didn’t help). Sometimes, if I was lucky, it would plateau for a bit. I can’t pinpoint a time when it all happened. I can pinpoint a time when it became worse, but I feel that for the most part, I was born this way because I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t this way. I’m nearly 40 years old now and there is no before and there has been no after. I have no “before” to hold on to and no “after” to keep my hope alive. So while some people wish they could go back to “before,” all I can do is wish that I had a “before.” I wish I had a “normal” part of my life or at least a part where I felt normal. I like to imagine that maybe I’ll have an “after,” but as the years continue to pass, I lose hope.

Amayah Rees
Amayah Rees @jojoba
contributor

When You Have a Lifelong Struggle With PTSD and Depression

A lot of people can pinpoint a time when they lost their mental health. When depression or anxiety began. I’ve heard people wish their life could go back to the way it was before, the way it used to be. Each time I’ve seen a new psychologist, psychiatrist, occupational therapist etc., they have asked when it all began. How old was I? What was I doing at the time? How did I know something was wrong? I’ve never been able to answer those questions, not to the practitioners satisfaction anyway. You see, there was no “before.” My earliest memories are of abuse, which resulted in hypervigilence, anxiety, depression and self-harm. That was my life. And I hated it. I wasn’t a happy child. I wasn’t a confident child. I didn’t do well at school. I didn’t have friends. I wasn’t capable of socializing. I was different. I didn’t fit in. I was a very serious child. I was overly concerned about cancer, the war in Iraq and the end of the world. Most of these issues were largely the result of trauma and the resulting post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). As I got older, my depression gradually became worse. There came a point when the PTSD combined with the depression left me unable to function. I dropped out of school in year 11 to sleep all day on the couch. That was my existence for several years. That was the extent to which I could function. My mental health continued to deteriorate for many years, despite medication and therapy (more trauma was added by “professionals” trying to “help” me, so obviously that didn’t help). Sometimes, if I was lucky, it would plateau for a bit. I can’t pinpoint a time when it all happened. I can pinpoint a time when it became worse, but I feel that for the most part, I was born this way because I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t this way. I’m nearly 40 years old now and there is no before and there has been no after. I have no “before” to hold on to and no “after” to keep my hope alive. So while some people wish they could go back to “before,” all I can do is wish that I had a “before.” I wish I had a “normal” part of my life or at least a part where I felt normal. I like to imagine that maybe I’ll have an “after,” but as the years continue to pass, I lose hope.