Friday, February 10, 2012

support groups and schoolwork

Greetings. I have finished one of the two remaining lectures that need to be finished before the end of tomorrow. I want to get the other one done before I finish for the day. It's only 23 minutes long. (But I'll probably pause it once or twice to relisten to something or to look at a slide more closely.) I have concluded that I can keep up in two classes at the time. This results in a juggling action where I get ahead and catch up various classes but am kept on my toes at some point each week. But at least it is working. And I haven't had much trouble keeping up in the ASL (sign language) class once I got caught up the first time. It is the required classes that keep scaring me now. What a (not) surprise. Oh, and the bad grade I got on a test in ASL? The D? He regraded it and gave me a B. Not sure why. I forgot about the teachers who grade on a curve or who set the A standard on the highest performance on the test instead of 100%. Maybe that was it. Somehow, that doesn't help me feel so much better because I still think I should have known it well enough to get 96% of the points as written. Oh, perfectionism.

I had a question for people. Does anyone else ever go to support groups for people with mental illnesses? I have done so and still do sometimes (but I've been having trouble getting myself out of the house for that recently). Last time I went, however, I found myself feeling inferior to the other people with mental illnesses. As if I'm inferior to healthy people and to these people, both. I don't cope with stress as well as a "healthy" person. But I don't have the same problems as some of these people with mental illnesses. I hear them and think, now they really have a mental illness, not just a light case like you have. They are truly brave and courageous dealing with the sorrows life has given them, while here I am struggling to get by with my stupid little case of depression and OCD. My OCD isn't that bad - I can still work. What am I complaining about? Can't I just deal with it? My depression - well, it might just be an episode (yeah, the kind that lasts off and on for years). It's not bi-polar, which, obviously, is more respectable, a more real mental illness. And I'm not in the hospital nor particularly close to needing such care at the moment. Ha, I'm only mild to moderately depressed. Why do I have trouble? I shouldn't say much. My trouble is too little. I'm just weak.

Huh, funny that "weak" is the final conclusion. So what if I am weak? (I mean, so what beyond my silly unhelpful and unhealthy ideas of what I should be.)

Anyway, I wondered if anyone else felt this way, neither sick enough nor healthy enough. I know that thinking was kind of distorted. Funny how it still feels disturbing despite distortions (yes, I'm playing with word sounds now).

Now I'm getting hungry. Hunger is always interrupting my studying - or my procrastination of studying. I think I'll go back and try to get a little farther before I call it a night and head home for frozen pizza and an adventure book (easy-read suspense novel equals escape or at least partial escape from the world where my brain is throwing darts at me).


  1. Oh Abigail. I feel this way quite often. Everything you said about how "can't I just deal with it" and "I'm not THAT bad" ... I do that too. My therapist told me all that is part of the scrupulosity OCD. I guess that's good to know.

    I have never gone to a support group for mental illness. I think I'd be too shy and afraid to go.

    I'm glad your classes are going better for you.


  2. Abigail, I have had the "I'm not that bad" thoughts a lot through the years. My first psychiatrist called me "high functioning" because I was able to go to school and work. However, that did not, and does not negate all the pain I've had from the depression and OCD. That's true for you too.

    I went to a OCD support group about 15 years ago. I didn't like it. There was no facilitator, and a couple of people dominated the discussion. Not too helpful. But I have heard of others who have had really good experiences.

    Don't feel weak because your problems don't seem as bad as others. You have disorders that cause a lot of pain--I can vouch for that, believe me.