mental well being and coping strategies

"Acceptance" -- necessary for continued happiness yet a dirty word to our egos.
I concluded I am better off not listening to my ego. Easier said than done, though!
Best wishes to all!
I agree, you have to accept how small you are and how little control you have of things. I am not sure what constitutes an "ego" though, is it your self image, or just the part of us that desperately grasps to life?

I have 8 clinically diagnosed mental disorders, being -
  • (Adult) ADD-ADHD
  • Agoraphobia
  • Asperger's Syndrome
  • Narcissism
  • Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)
  • Panic Disorder
  • Paranoia
  • Personality Disorder Not Otherwise Specified
I am 62, but not diagnosed until I was 44.

Name rings a bell, tell us more.

Thank you Andy for being up front, and for being such an asset (not a handicap) to this site ;)

We should promote you from Captain to General.

Cheers all, and it's Friday here in Oz, so


Chris Turner

I never counted them up. Let's see

  1. Bi-polar disorder
    1. I got over the common idea that God has healed me and I no longer need my meds.
    2. God "healed me" by making medications available so that I can live a sane life.
  2. ADHD
    1. This helps explain my rambling stream of thought typing.
    2. It's more apparent at the end of the day when my meds are wearing off.
    3. Interestingly, the evening happens to be the time I'm most often here on this forum. Lucky you!!
    4. I can drink an entire pot of coffee and go straight to sleep.
  3. Generalized anxiety disorder.
    1. Tunnel vision in the grocery store is NOT FUN!
  4. Dependent personality disorder.
    1. I'm working REALLY hard on this one. I DO NOT want another marriage like the one I just got out of. I hate to tell you this Wizardfromoz, I'm pretty sure he was a narcissist.
  5. PTSD
  6. Recovering alcoholic.
    1. Member of a 12 step program that literally saved my life.
    2. My 12 step program has made it possible to manage the rest of my disorders.
    3. Rule #62 comes from my program of recovery.
    4. Two weeks from now, I will be celebrating 27 years of recovery.
      1. Sobriety in a 12 step group means not one single drop of alcohol. NOTHING
      2. For an alcoholic being sober and being dry are not the same thing.
Unless I'm forgetting something, you are 2 up on me!

My disorders are not who I am. They are challenges. I can roll over and feel sorry for myself, or I can meet the challenge and find a way to grow in spite of and because of them. I choose the latter. That's the best decision I ever made.


The odds against a narcissist recognizing they are one is even greater than an alcoholic accepting their alcoholism. I'm glad to have met one! It was a self aware narcissist who helped me understand I was married to one.
I had no idea this thread was here. It looks like an appropriate place to leave this so I can go on.

For 2 years now, turmoil seems to be around every corner. I refuse to let it take me down.

My marriage had been in trouble shortly after it began. There was lot of trouble and what I now understand was narcissistic abuse. That was when I began to doubt my own perception of reality.

He had just been involuntarily separated from the military when the Department of Defense decided to cut military expenses. Because he was an officer, we were given separation pay, $100,000.00. Soon after, he picked up his drug habit again. One night I was really upset and suicidal. He turned off my phone so I couldn't call anyone. I couldn't get into the account to turn it back on. I chatted with someone from a hotline on my computer. They convinced me to leave. I managed to grab his phone. He chased me on my way out the door and banged on my car as a backed out the drive. He turned that phone off too. While I was gone, he tried to guess the password to my checking account. I couldn't get gas. I barely made it back home the next day. When I got home he was sitting on the couch naked with a knife in his hand. While I was gone, he shit and pissed on the floor in my studio. He wrote threats on the walls in there, the kitchen and my bedroom closet door.

Separation pay was gone a few months later. He separated as disabled veteran. As bizarre as it is and because he was not %100 disabled, we had to pay back the separation pay. It was garnished from his disability pay. We didn't get any of it. We had been married a year and I was the last one to know that he would be out of town with his kids on our first anniversary. I was the last to find out a lot of things.

Money was very tight. His ex-wife was being especially problematic in ways that cost us a lot of money. He was still using and that decreased our income even more. After a few months, I told him I couldn't be married to a junky. If he didn't get clean, we would get divorced. I took him to one meeting and that was it. I'm a recovering alcoholic. When someone with more time dates a new comer, it's called 13th stepping. I've seen to many people dragging their new comer to meetings thinking they could keep them sober. I know exactly what happens and I know who gets hurt the most. It's always the person with more time. Just being in the same meeting with a person that close to you is a bad idea. I had 19 years of sobriety at the time. He had less than a day. I stayed away from meetings because I thought he needed them more.

He was under a lot of stress. I lied to myself believing that he was serious about recovery. When things calmed down, we would work on our marriage. We both swore that before making any decisions about divorce, we would seek marriage counseling first. He broke that promise three times, 2018, 2019 and again in 2023.

Late 2018, he told me he wanted a divorce. He gave me numerous contradicting reasons. Shortly after, he gave me a letter telling me he thought we were meant to be together. In the same letter were more contradictory reasons that we couldn't be together. There were also a few things he said that didn't seem to "fit" any of what was in that letter. He said he didn't could handle if I ever needed a wheel chair. Before he moved out, he said he wanted to work on our marriage. We went out of state when his sister died. He wanted to me to go with him. Soon after we got home, he told me he rented an apartment and he was moving out. That was Spring of 2019. That was also after he started getting disability pay.

I started going to meetings again. The reception I got was very different than it was when I met them. People I never talked to told me things about my marriage, that I owe him amends. I have never ever felt so unwelcome at a 12 step meeting. I wondered what he said about me.

Later summer of 2020, he told me he wanted a 2nd chance. I thought about it for a few months. He had been to re-had twice. He told me he was going to meetings. He seemed to actually be clean and changed. That can happen in recovery. October 2020 I let him come home. I asked him if had been saying things about me at meetings. He said he didn't lie about me. He just said things so he would look better. I asked if he said those things at my expense. He said yes. Not long after that, he told me he was temporarily receiving %100 disability pay. It's more than I earn. It would end soon. I'm used to toughing things out, I could deal with it. He can't.

I went to my own meetings. He went to his.

December 2022, just over a year after letting him come back, I broke my knee cap. The x-rays clearly showed it in 2 pieces. The hospital I was taken to didn't have any crutches or a leg brace that fit. I was taken out in a wheel chair. No one, not even my ex tried to help me get into the car when I was released.

A few days later, I went to a different hospital emergency room. They expedited surgery. (The visit to the 1st emergency room is actually a pretty funny story. I might put in another Off Topic thread later.)

The surgeon told me I would never be able to do a lot of things again. Sit Indian style, crawl on my knees. In a few years I might be able to bend my knee more than 90 degrees. I would always have trouble walking up and down stairs. I sat in a chair for 6 weeks with my leg extended in front of me. I depended on him for nearly everything. I couldn't keep the house clean.I couldn't do laundry, make my own dinner or coffee. I couldn't take a bath if he wasn't there. I did the laundry for us both, but he had to do it now. My bed is a high one. I needed a stool for my good leg to lift myself into bed. I had to have a bucket next to the bed at night. The bathroom is on the other end of the house and he always put my crutches out of reach when I went to bed. I started leaning my crutches against the night stand so I could get to them.

That was also when he was reclassified as 100% disabled veteran, twice as much money. We also found out we could get the $100,000 separation pay back.

6 weeks after surgery, the doctor told me I could walk without a brace. I was supposed to go to physical therapy, but my knee looked really good. I was still healing though. I couldn't walk as long as I could before, or bend my knee much. Sitting in certain chairs put pressure on my knee and caused some pain. We went to a celebration his recovery group was having. When I met them, I has same feeling of being unwelcome I had when I started back at meetings several years. I wondered if he was saying things at my expense like he did before.

My ex started acting like a jerk again. A couple of weeks after getting off the crutches, he started complaining that I wasn't driving my own car. It needed to be inspected before I could legally drive. The brakes needed to be changed before inspection. The day I changed the brakes, my car fell off of the jacks. Thankfully it fell the other way. If I'd been on the other side it would have fallen on my knee, the knee that was still healing. My ex didn't care. He actually didn't care. He didn't understand why I was upset that he didn't care. He said he did care, it just didn't show. It wasn't his fault that I didn't know it, that he shouldn't have to tell me.

The next morning was just as bad. I always woke up early. I didn't want to get out of that habit, so I never turned off my alarms. I have 3 alarms set, 15 minutes apart in case I turn one off in my sleep. I had been turning them off in my sleep lately. He complained. I changed the alarms to go off a couple of hours later. I missed one that went off at 5am. I woke up in panic that morning because I missed it. 45 minutes later I woke up to him yelling at me. When I flipped over in bed, my knee caught him as he was getting up. He said I kicked him. I had suppressed my feelings, doubted myself, made excuses for him, believed his lies and took his abuse for 9 years. It erupted that day. That was early May.

He had a habit of cutting me out when he didn't want to deal me and my feelings. He was gone all day. He blocked my phone calls and text messages. When he came home late that night, I told him he had to leave. He convinced me to go to marriage counseling. He couldn't tell me he loved me. I told him there was no point in counseling. A day later and by text message he asked me again to go with him to counseling. I asked if he loved me. He said yes. I agreed to go but he couldn't come home. Every single conversation after that was by text message. He wouldn't talk to me. Sometimes it was hours, even an entire day before he answered my messages.

When I called to make arrangements so I could go with him to counseling. They asked me those questions they use to access a person. They told me I should have individual therapy first. After a couple of weeks of therapy, I told him I needed some time to myself, that I couldn't talk to him for a while. I told him that when I was ready to talk, I wouldn't be reduced to text messages. He made a lot crazy accusations that summer. He accused me of harboring his demons, stealing credit cards when I didn't even know where he was staying... I got mad, He demanded that I stop abusing him. He always ended every demand with "Please". In June he remembered our anniversary. I was the last one to find out he filed for divorce 6 weeks later. I was the last one to find out he didn't do a lot of the things we agreed on, like paying the rent until I went back to work in September. I found out less than a week before school started that in his words, he couldn't move forward with his life and be married.

Last year was hard. He took everything and left me with the bills.. He had an attorney because he had all the money. I couldn't get one. I represented myself because I was not going to let him throw me in the trash as walked out the door. I was going to have a say in this very last decision about our marriage. I knew I was bound to lose to him in court, but that wasn't what I counter-sued for. I sued for my self respect. I went hungry to do it, I lost sleep, I cried, I was scared. When people told me he would get what he had coming to him, I told them I didn't wan that to be reason I felt better. He sent text messages to harass me in the morning, at night, on my way to work and while I was at work.

I couldn't get a protective order because I didn't have any bruises and around here veterans are treated like Gods. A couple of weeks before the final hearing, I totaled my car. I had had insurance, but the policy wasn't in my name. He took it off of as an owner of the policy. He wouldn't accept the settlement, I couldn't get a car. I was at his mercy. I couldn't get to work. There is not public transportation out here. There is no one out here that could take me to work everyday. He managed to isolate me from every single person I know around here. I was broke. I stayed that way until he accepted the settlement 6 weeks after the divorce was final. I found out he got married again before our divorce was final.

The morning of the final hearing I broke down like I never have before. He lied on the stand after taking the oath. The hearing was a disaster. I knew it probably would be, but only came for one thing. I came for my self respect.

When I finally got the settlement for my vehicle in late September, I bought a used van from my landlord and some things I really needed. I gave the rest of it to my landlord to start catching up on the rent I hadn't paid plus the rent my ex didn't tell me he quit paying. I should have gotten half of the marital estate. I should have been able to give him everything I owed him. If not for my landlord I would have been on the streets. In November, I paid my rent then lost my job a week later. My reputation took a big hit last year. The final blow came and I lost my job.

I had a new job at a school district by the end of November. I have an excellent reference from a teacher I subbed for, but it two months for a former supervisor to finally answer questions online. He was the only one I've kept in touch with. The rest of them retired and I couldn't find them. Every time I talked to him he said he forgot. Thanksgiving break came and went. He forgot again. Winter break came and went. He still hadn't done it. The second week of January, I asked a friend and former coworker to give me a reference. She was never my supervisor. I don't like lying, but I was desperate. She sent the form back the next morning, right before they finally got my former supervisors answers.

My landlord died that week too. I don't have a lease. It was all verbal agreements. A lot of people have taken advantage of his kindness. I've been lumped in with all those people. His widow and children don't want to rent out anymore. I found an eviction notice on my front door last week, 3 days to move. I haven't gotten my first paycheck yet. They don't care. It doesn't matter that I gave them a huge chunk of money late in September, that I paid my rent until I lost my job, that I told my landlord about everything, that I don't have any family that can help or friends left after the divorce. I understand it all sounds like excuses to them, but it's not. Last week I woke to the sound of my landlords grandson stomping around on the roof with a chain saw cutting down the tree that hangs over my house. He knocks on my door and before I can answer he walks into my home. Tonight he came in. When I told I didn't want to be rude, but I have to work in the morning. He stomped out saying this isn't my home, I shouldn't be here.

For the last year and a half it seems that every time I start to finally get my head above the water, something else happens to push me back down.
And one other thing, I can do everything the doctor told me I wouldn't be able to do. Every single one. I only notice that my knee is still weak when I walk up the stairs. Other than, my knee is fine.

I'm like that. If someone tells me I won't be able to, can't or shouldnt and if it's important enough to me I can and will. I'll get through this too.
For the last year and a half it seems that every time I start to finally get my head above the water, something else happens to push me back down.

I had years like that (well, not subject to some of the extraordinary behaviour by ex-#4), up until 1998..

Two divorces, one of them ugly.

Then I met Elaine, and we were together for 24 years 5 weeks and 3 days.

It ended with her passing away on 30 May 2022, else we would have been together for life, I expect.

For 21 years and one month of that I was her Carer.

That "job" was both rewarding and taxing.

When I no longer had that job, with her passing, I felt loss on several fronts, one of them obviously with the loss of her, but also as more time passed, with the loss of a substantial percentage of my "purpose", with no longer being a Carer.

My cloud has a silver lining, and a substantial part of that involves my work here, and my friends here, but I have a project I undertook to try out for you with regard to Linux, and I want to begin that, so I will deal with my story in installments.

Hopefully, the rest of 2024 will bring good things for you. :)

Isome of the extraordinary behaviour by ex-#4),
He tried to reduce me to text messages.

I reduced him to nothing more than a single digit number.

My higher power, that would be God for most other people...

He didn't bring me this far to drop me on my ass now. He just wants me somewhere else. I'm moving to Ohio. I have one friend who moved up there. She didn't judge me based on what #4 said. The other one she introduced to me in a 3-way phone call. We talk a lot. He's one of the people who helped me get through last year. Every phone call ended in laughter! I've never seen him in person.

Their both from Ohio. They know people there. I already have a job. She's also found a place for me and my multitude of cats!

I've moved 4 times with a lot of cats. I'll never be anywhere that they can't find me. I live 30 miles out in the country in a hard to find place but cats still find me. People won't drive this far to dump animals. They always show up no matter where I go. I've woken up with cats I don't know in my bed more than once. One of them had a litter in bed next to me. I come home to find them lounging on my furniture. Recently one rubbed his head in the palm of my hand while I was putting down food. That was the first time I saw him. I think l said something in a post around here somewhere about the feral cats that had litters under my kitchen sink and on top of my wardrobe.

Before I gave him my phone number I told him I come with cats, they come with with me wherever I go. If they can't go, I don't go. I won't live in the city or near people who would be bothered by them. And since I rent, that pretty much means the house is in bad shape. I him that these things are not negotiable. I recently added they're a sure thing. He wasn't.

Staff online

Members online