Inside My Mind

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Inside my mind

Is where I stay

Deep in despair

Falling from the sky

Like elephants with tubas

Stomp, Stomp, Stomping

Upon my head

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Chaos is spinning

While the walls are closing in

Crazily paranoid is what I become

9.0 on the richter scale

I am my own fault line

Out of whack, emotionally wrecked

I wish I could stop all this madness

Drowning in thoughts

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Unwilling to vanish

Desperate for a lifeboat

Tripping in darkness

Stumbling in fear

Tremble, Tremble, Tremble

Blindly reaching for the light

Gasping for life

Prison bars of solitude

Holds me captive

Like a funhouse full of mirrors

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Filled full of clowns

Pointing and laughing

Staring me down

Circling my mind

Seeing only stars

Spinning, yo-yo-ing

Out of control

Waiting and wanting

For my mind to stop spiraling

Gasping for air

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Swallowing only rocks

Like shards of glass

Inside my mind

A life sentence

and I just want parole

Forever trapped inside my mind

screaming

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My Life as a Hermit

her·mit

/ˈhərmit/
Noun
  1. A person living in solitude as a religious discipline.
  2. Any person living in solitude or seeking to do so.

While I don’t live in solitude for religious discipline, I do live find myself being a hermit lately… not all entirely by choice. I say by choice because a part of why I isolate is due to my depression. The worse my depression is, the deeper I go into that dark cave. Most of my adulthood I have danced a fine line between the outside world and that solitude. Solitude can be healthy at times but for me it too much of it can be a very bad thing and the longer I go without interaction from the outside world the harder it is to escape.

Seclusion for me was a way to protect myself from the deep hurt that the world had inflicted upon me. It was a way to block myself from the pain of it all. I find myself feeling like I am a million miles away from everyone I love, when they live upstairs from me. The deeper I go into that depressive hermit mode, the more I try to hide from others… to the point where I will only go upstairs when everyone else is sleeping. In the past I have intentionally went hungry because I didn’t want to face anyone. (the kitchen is upstairs) That tells you how severe my isolation gets at times.

When my Mom died in September I went back into hiding and I wasn’t sure if I would ever come out… nor was I sure I wanted to. Living a life of a hermit is a miserable existence but at least I don’t get hurt. This is how my mind works. I don’t realize that living this way is hurting me as well. I’ve gone weeks without leaving the house and usually only leave the house when I have to go to appointments. Honestly if it wasn’t for therapy and occasionally getting groceries I am not sure if I would leave.

I have been seeking refuge in this cave for many years. Usually I hit a point where the isolation becomes so unbearable that I must make a run for it. Picture a crazy person running on the streets, that’s me!!! 🙂 I’m getting to that point now, where boredom starts to sink in. You can only get on the internet, play games on your phone and watch tv only so much before it drives you mad.

With isolations comes deep loneliness and sadness. It’s not as if I want to be myself, it’s that I feel I have no other choice. I have to wonder how my feelings of worthlessness affects my need to isolate, like I don’t deserve to be around anything good. Those voices tell me I deserve to be alone. I have learned when you give people chances, they only hurt you. When they hurt me (deeply) I usually go running back to my cave. I have done this time and time again, like a broken record. 

Part of me feels like running again. Starting all over like I have done so many times before but I am tired of running. Tired of starting all over again.

I have to find balance and disconnect myself from other people’s feelings and actions. It is when I connect myself to them, that my life crashes and burns. It’s like I am constantly putting out fires and running in emergency mode. Danger, Danger!!!

I’m scared of the world. Scared of being hurt again. Scared of people dying. Scared. I live my life in fear and that is no way to live. That fear puts me behind bars every single time.

I often wonder when did I start this cycle of being a hermit. Was it when I was sexually abused? Honestly it probably has something to do with that. I can remember hiding beneath my pillow and praying that it would stop… I also did that when my father would go into his tyrants. I guess I learned to be a hermit very early on in my childhood. It was safer to be alone, in the comforts of my bed. I could just close my eyes and pretend the bad away. I guess I am trying to do that today but it just ain’t working and I’m failing miserably.

I wish I could just go out into the world bravely, standing tall and strong. Drowning out these fearful voices is difficult when they are so deafening loud. I wish I was more like Superman, who I grew up loving, and be able to face anything that came my way. Even Clark Kent gets out into the world. I just want to rip my shirt off and show the world that I am the man of steel but lately I feel like the man of cellophane.

I’m not sure why I am so scared to venture back into the world. Is it failure? success? fear of getting hurt again? It’s probably all of those and then some. Part of me wishes I could live like hermit forever but I know that isn’t possible since I’m not rich, nor do I have my own place in the woods. Honestly I’m not really a hermit and it doesn’t bring me an ounce of solitude. I force myself to live this way and I am learning to rewire my brain to believe otherwise.

 

Waiting for a Man to Love Me

When I came out of the closet in 1995 I had this idealistic view on relationships and love. I had my life all planned out. Many guys go through a phase of not wanting a relationship but not me. I knew early on that I wanted to spend my life with one person, even before I knew I was gay. It never dawned on me that I would have such a difficult time finding that one person.

When you are gay you’re already start off with a disadvantage in regards to love but add to the mix your weight it makes it even more difficult. I remember when I first started to date I would lie about my weight, as I didn’t feel anyone would want to meet me if they knew the truth. It never occured me as to what would happen when we actually met. It only took one disaster of a date for me to stop lying about my weight.

I can remember early on in the days of gay.com chat rooms others feeling the need to berate me because my size. They would private message me and say horrible things to me, all unprovoked. I was already insecure and that only made things worse.

I’ve gone all my life thinking that there had to be a reason why men didn’t like me or love me. It all started with my father. I grew up believing there was something missing inside of me that made my father treat me the way he did. As an adult guys that I have dated have only mirrored that.

I have attached myself to guys that are emotionally unavailable because I believe that is what I deserve. I haven’t realized that when guys reject me they aren’t really rejecting who I am but it is hard to see that when your heart is breaking. The more a guy is distant, the more I try to get him to like me… like I have to convince him.  I have even looked past red flags that I realize afterwards that I shouldn’t have. All because I didn’t think I was worthy of more.

I didn’t realize I was finding myself around other people who were like me in the sense that they felt they were broken or even worse they didn’t realize it but still lived their life as such. I couldn’t see that they too had their own baggage, all I could see they didn’t want me and it was all my fault. I think the problem was that I’ve lived life thinking I was broken and that is what I showed the world. I grew tolerating bad situations because I had to and it sunk into my conscious. I thought that was what love was.

Being an emotional person I have had my fair share of scaring guys away. I took it all personally. Many times I wished I could be like everyone else and turn off my feelings but I learned quickly that wasn’t an option for me.

Every heart break… Every rejection was like I was setting up a domino, one guy at a time. When one domino falls, they all fall and I relive each past hurt all at once. You have enough dominoes fall and you become very gun shy… to the point where you just give up. Loneliness usually would get me to venture outside my cave but every time I would get hurt and run back into seclusion.

Each time I meet someone I really like, which isn’t that often, I have this little spark in my mind and think is he the one… then I wait… patiently… I’m always so afraid of scaring the guy away I tend to walk on eggshells. I have often wondered when will I ever be enough for someone? When will someone see my gifts as strengths, and not as weaknesses?

I recently found myself being very fond of a guy I was getting to know. He was unlike most other guys I have met. He was charming, sweet and shy. It was the first time (in a very long time) that a guy didn’t make me feel like an object. I knew that he wasn’t ready for a relationship but that didn’t stop me from liking him in that way. I mean how could I not, he is a wonderful guy.

In the past, I haven’t asked for what I wanted… I usually let it slip away, so I let him know how I felt and of course feelings weren’t mutual. It hurt, deeply but I was willing to work through those horribly feelings to keep the friendship. Though it caused him to distance himself, to the point where I barely heard from him. Of course I took it personal. It was one thing to not want to be my boyfriend but another thing to not want to be my friend.

Five months passed and we started talking again. I found out that he was dating someone and again a domino fell. I started to think what about me didn’t he like. I knew I was his physical type because he liked bigger guys but other than that it was unknown… I even asked him about it and he couldn’t give me an answer. He said he hadn’t saw me in that light, which really hurt. It is hard to not think things like I am not good enough. If I was only that and this… and so on.

I catch myself falling into old habits of taking everything personal. I learned early that I can’t make people love me but that certainly doesn’t stop me from trying and waiting… I’m tired of waiting. Tired of feeling that I’m not good enough because I am. When you surround yourself with pain and hurt, that is all you can see. It stops you from looking into another’s world to realize that they have their own issues, baggage and drama.

My biggest fear is that I am going to grow old alone. Why should I expect anyone else to fight for me, when I won’t fight for me? Every man has kept me at a distance not because of something I lacked but something I possessed… and that being a big heart. People have come to question love and have to find a motive for it. Many people feel they don’t deserve such a degree of love.

I’m learning to adapt to a world that doesn’t crumble with the idea of being single. Just watch a few movies on the Hallmark Channel and you will have yourself convinced that you can’t live without someone else but in reality we can… and often it happens. I also have to realize when you date that each person brings their own baggage to the table, whether they want to admit it or not.

I have waited so long for a man to love me and in the process I stopped loving myself. It all chipped away at my heart and ruined my self worth and self esteem. Loving myself is very tough, especially when their are still parts of me that believe I don’t deserve it but I am going to keep at it. The good thing about being treated poorly is you realize what you don’t want or deserve, sometimes it takes breaking that record.

Prisoner in My Own Body

I’ve discovered recently how deep my self worth (or lack thereof) runs and how it connects to everything I touch. I have known for years that I suffer from poor self esteem and self worth but I didn’t realize how much of an impact it had on my life.

With depression and PTSD, for me, there comes this crippling isolation. The more depressed or triggered I am the more I crawl into my cave. This isn’t a new concept for me as I have been doing this for year. The closest people in my life become strangers, and strangers become monsters. It is a scary place to me. I lose all sense of reality and often I don’t even recognize myself.

I woke up early this morning (which is rare for me) and instantly felt the need to cleanse myself, as in take a shower. It will have been almost a week since my last shower. I wish I could say that was the longest I have been without bathing but it comes with the territory. The more worthless I feel the less likely I am going to care about staying clean. For most taking a showering is a no brainer but when I am in the low place it becomes like Mount Everest.

Every time I shower, especially if it has been a good while since my last one, I feel so clean and fresh. Pure. That doesn’t last very long, usually less than an hour.

Every time I was sexually abused I tried to wash off the dirty with soap but no matter how long or hard I scrubbed it wouldn’t wash away. My outside would be clean but the soap couldn’t touch or reach the dirty deep inside. So it makes sense when I feel the most worthless I allow my body to stay dirty because this is how I feel inside.

When I am depressed everything goes to hell from my personal hygiene to my eating habits, and everything else in between. You should have seen some of the apartments I have lived in, you would have thought it was a disaster zone. I would leave dishes in the sinks for months to the point where I would have to throw everything away. I haven’t gotten better about that but I still allow my living area to go out of whack. Whenever I would have anyone come over, I would go into a panic trying to clean everything. I couldn’t let anyone know the chaos my life was in. I had to give the appearance that everything was okay.

Today I realized that my body is a prison cell. I started to think my mind was the prison but in reality it is my whole body that is the prison. Certainly my mind has it’s own great big, dark cell but everything is contained inside the walls of my prison body.

I desperately want to break free from this cell but I have struggled for years doing so. I have been off my diet since my birthday (july 3) and I have struggled since to get back on track. I use to really struggle with compulsive overeating. There would be times that I would try to medicate my bad feelings with food. I would eat myself into oblivion until all I noticed was sickness from being full. Sweets and soda were my fair weather friends. This week I have noticed myself pigging out to the point where I just don’t care.

The more worthless I feel the more the need to make the horribleness go away, anyway I can. I become very compulsive and I have noticed an increase in my compulsion recently. Food and sex were two ways I used to compensate for my self worth, both always lead me down a dark road.

Sex has also been a struggle for me. I saw myself as an object for many years and gave the people what they wanted. It wasn’t always that way. I grew up believing I could find someone who loved and accepted me. I had dreams of having a family and spending my life with that one person. When that didn’t happen, I took what I thought was the next best thing… not realizing the damage it would cause. When I am triggered my mind tries to go down that road again.

I have been celibate since April 2012, which is the longest I have ever gone without sex. It is one of the few things that I am proud of. I have taken back my body in regards to sex. For me it’s a reminder that not all of me thinks I am worthless. Now that’s not to say that I haven’t had temptation or have had moments where I have tried to look for sex but thankfully I quickly snap out of it. I have caught myself thinking what the heck am I doing??? I don’t want to give my body up for one night of pleasure. I realize not only will I lose all that time of purity but afterwards I will feel like crap.

I went through a period of heavy sexual compulsion. I didn’t care about the risk, I just wanted to feel good but every time I would feel dirty… just like after the abuse. Every time I would run to the shower and try to wash the dirt away and every time I would fail miserably. Usually it would end in my feeling suicidal. With acting out sexually, I’m not proud to admit, I engaged in some very risky behavior. I was playing russian roulette with my health, body and life. I am thankful that to this day I am hiv negative, so many others haven’t been so fortunate.

I’ve thought long and hard about why I didn’t care about the risks of having unprotected sex. Obviously it’s connected to how I feel about myself. When I couldn’t find a man to love me, I gave up and resorted to taking any kind of attention I could find. I didn’t feel I was worthy of love, care and attention so I gave men what they wanted. I learned very early on that a mans needs came before my own. The abuse taught me that my needs aren’t important. Obviously my mind knows that isn’t true but it’s something I still struggle with daily.

It’s amazing the lies your brain believes. Like you deserve AIDS. I didn’t go out looking to become positive but I certainly didn’t turn it away… nor did I want it. Every time I would get tested for HIV I would go into this panic. You would think that being tested negative would scare me straight but that only lasted so long before I started acting out again. I think in part having risky sex was my psyche trying to commit suicide, it certainly was extremely self destructive. I have often wondered why I wanted HIV. Maybe I thought it was the only way for someone to love me and show me attention? Was I so desperate to lose the weight to think having HIV was the only way to do so? Did I really want to die? I certainly wasn’t a bug chaser (someone who actively wants to become hiv positive) but indirectly I had to be trying.

The only correlation to all of this was when I came out of the closet in 1995. One of the many hurtful things my father told me that I was going to get AIDS and that all my friends wouldn’t be there when I was dying alone in the hospital. He also told me that I had always wanted to lose weight and that getting AIDS that would finally come true. Am I still holding on to the hope that my father will love me in the way I need, to the point where dying from AIDS he’d come to my rescue??? It’s been eighteen years since I heard my father spew his hatred towards me and it still feels like he just said them to me. I’m just thankful I have turned down another road but I fear when I get these urges that I will turn back around down that road…

Even recently I have started to walk down that road. I even created a couple of sex accounts, which I quickly deleted… I know that that road is a slippery slide to some dangerous behavior. Thankfully I have realized that is not the life for me, nor the one I want. That is the struggle with being single and feeling lonely. I miss human contact, intimacy. I watched a movie recently about this gay couple and I watched in awe as they made love to each other, as this is something I have always dreamed of but have never obtained. I’m realizing that something isn’t better than nothing. Nothing is better than something that will hurt me, it’s just learning to cope with the indifference.

While I have been able to fend off the sexual compulsion, I haven’t been so lucky when it comes to food. Food is my biggest battle and my biggest addiction. Food has been my biggest friend and defense. I have built this physical blubber of a wall to protect myself and it’s killing me. It makes sense to me that I have been struggling lately with eating healthy. This is really the first time since January that I have struggled this long. I believe in part is that I am getting to the core of all these bad feelings and untruths about myself. All this time I have seen it as digging a tunnel to my core, when I have been digging my escape route to expose it all. They say it gets worse before it gets better. This is the first time in my life that I have been actively working on my body. I am facing the truth in my own time, doing what I need to do to heal… going to therapy, taking my medicine, etc. I might not be moving as quickly as some feel and want me to but I am moving at my own pace… and I will get there. The road to taking care of myself is bound to be bumpy. I have to realize that occasionally I will fall off track, sometimes I will even take the wrong road but the key is to always get back on track… regardless how long it has been.

I’ve been living in darkness so long, that it’s only natural the dark force will try to pull me under. I have been living so unhealthy for so many years, so I must realize the road to healing isn’t going to be perfect. I will fall. I will get scratched. The difference I am no longer in that hurtful place, it is all an illusion. A way to keep me from what I deserve, which is love and happiness.

So I am going to keep moving forward and as a little fishy once told me… I am going to just keep swimming.

Trapped

So I recently realized during my last therapy session that I have always felt trapped in the abuse, as in I don’t deserve anything good in my life. This realization has allowed me to look back at my life and see the choices I have made and why I have allowed my life to go for less than deserved.

During that week when I was sexually molested I learned very quickly who I was and my purpose. The years afterward only helped bury those beliefs even further in my grave.

I have always known that I have a low self esteem. I have also been aware the havoc the sexual abuse has had on my life but I never was able to put everything together.

The worthlessness arrose those nights when I was scared for my life, hiding underneath the pillow… praying for the awfulness to stop. When it didn’t I was groomed into believing I deserved it. I also grew up believing I didn’t deserve anything whole, pure or right. My body was something that anyone could take, even a family member.

It was about that time that I started to gain weight. My outside could finally match the way I felt inside and that was ugly, dirty and used. For many years these horrible feelings were buried deep inside of me but I don’t have that luxury now. I wish there was an easy fix to cure a self esteem. I dislike feeling worthless like I do.

When my therapist tried to tell me that I deserved good things, I started to float away and became all glassy eyed. I didn’t believe her. My mind does but my heart doesn’t. This is only confirmed by the various heart aches I have had in life.

Good things are taken from me and I am left with the bad. Inside I believe if I was a good boy I wouldn’t have been abused.

Now I am trying to get my life back, when I still hold onto many of those bad feelings. I think that is why I have such a severe need to hide. I still think I am that worthless, helpless, little boy. I don’t deserve love or happiness.

It’s been brainwashed into my psyche that I have to have someone else to be happy and that has only lead me to heartbreak and major disappointment.

I told my therapist I feel trapped… stuck… and I can’t get out. I have conditioned myself to believe I deserve to be miserable… deserve to be treated less.

I am thirty seven years old but I still feel like I am in that old cabin in the woods up north all those years ago, when it first started. I can still smell the damp old wooden walls. I close my eyes and I am in that bedroom again. I open my eyes and I am still there. No amount of soap will wash away the filth.

I want to feel safe again but that seems like a million miles away.

I want to be whole again. I want to be happy. I’m tired of feeling less and tired of feeling trapped. I just want to run… until I can’t run anymore.