I hate to openly admit this, simply because it feeds into the stereotype of every woman out there. But I have noticed over time that controlling my emotions, especially when I’m hurting, is very difficult.
Before the hip dysplasia issue was even an issue I was diagnosed with depression, generalized anxiety disorder, with bouts of agoraphobia. For those unfamiliar with agoraphobia, the dictionary definition reads:
- An abnormal fear of being in crowds, public places, or open areas, sometimes accompanied by anxiety attacks.
For myself it would manifest into this strong fear of simply leaving my house. Because of the lack of understanding, I would generally be forced out of the house and would eventually have a horrific panic attack. Typically in the car, or in a public space. Having a panic attack in a public space terrified me, so of course this just added to the anxiety. The idea of a group of people circling around me and watching me freak out would always cross my mind.
I struggled with anxiety and panic attacks for a long time, eventually finding the right combination of medication. Just as things were settling down in my mind, the hip dysplasia decided to butt it’s way into the equation. At first I was okay, I would have my moment of frustration or sadness from the pain. I started to notice that the anxiety wasn’t as much of an issue anymore, the depression was becoming more of a problem.
The depression was being caused by many factors. The main being the amount of pain I was dealing with on a daily basis. And then the amount of accommodation I was receiving in college was hard for me to accept. I’m an independent person and I do everything for myself. Accepting help brought me down, it made me feel so incapable. The depression worsened when huge family problems exploded. It’s a very long, deep seeded story that I’m working toward sharing.
Because of the combination of family struggles, pain, and the inability on my part of accepting my circumstances. Depression became a serious issue. Growing up, problems weren’t talked about, depression/anxiety wasn’t understood, and you were just told to grow up and get over it. I tried to get over it, but fighting a depressive feeling coupled with chronic pain and having to lead a sedentary lifestyle can take it’s toll.
Many times the thought of checking out had crossed my mind. Many times I wished I had never been made to exist. I couldn’t deal with everything.
For the most part I’m coping and keeping myself moving forward these days. But there are times when I’ll lash out or become verbally aggressive because I’m either hurting or I’m just so fed up with everything. Of course that can cause strain in even the strongest relationship. And I try, everyday, to not take my anger and frustration out on those around me. But in a way I feel like I’m just bottling up everything inside.
But I know if I let it out, it would be loud, aggressive, and we’d probably end up with a hole in the wall. There’s also the other distinct possibility that I would end up calling the prior physicians that wouldn’t help me. Leaving them a nice little voicemail, letting them know what I really think about them. It would be so satisfying, but I refuse to feed into my anger.
Over time I’ve been trying to not let other people’s emotions get to me as much. I tend to think of it as being an ‘emotional empath.’ I can sense the emotions of the people around me, and somehow I always end up sucking that into myself. Especially when someone is feeling angry. I take that in and start feeling it as well. This can be a struggle to deal with when you work in the sort of office that I work in.
When I suck in other people’s emotions, and I’m hurting. My mind stops being able to control that impulse to keep everything calm and centered. That’s when I end up lashing out, or using a tone that comes across as mean or condescending.
I need a vocal siv sometimes.