Trigger Warnings – Helping to save lives.

I don't know why I want these

BEFORE READING!

  1. Please note that the following may have content that some could find distressing. PLEASE think of yourself and where you’re at before reading. As always, if you do become distressed please contact your local mental health crisis support group. 
  2. Please read  Hey, University of Chicago: I am an academic. I am a survivor. I use trigger warnings in my classes. Here’s why. By Dr Erika Price. 
  3.  Love to hear your thoughts and feels. Leave a comment.
  4.  Please feel free to add links to mental health crisis services in your region in the  comments section and I will put them into a list. Thanks in advance.

Lifeline

 

 

 

 

Dearest Reader,

The article above,  came to my attention via that classy joint known as Facebook. I didn’t know that Anti-Trigger Warning Folk (Anti-Folk) was a thing before reading this article. I’d heard jokes around the internets about being ‘triggered’ but paid it no attention. Now that I have looked into the abyss, I cannot look away.

Dr Erika Price (social psychologist) encapsulates the reasons why trigger warnings are important, so I will endeavour to not rehash her arguments. However, I would like to add my own experience and opinions to her argument.

I am an academic-in-training (Applied Science; Psychology) and I live with mental illness. I have chronic Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD). Living with OCD is one of the many reasons I study psychology. Without the support of lecturers and tutors and their offers to contact them if feeling distressed – I would have dropped out within the first month of first year. I know, I wouldn’t have reached out of my accord had this offer not been made. Eventually a triggering lecture would have potentially risked my life. The heads-up emails and debriefing from my lecturers and tutors where invaluable not only to my education but to my ‘recovery’* as well. 

I do_not_look_sick_and_you_dont_look_stupid

By third year, I was a different student. Still OCD, but I had gained resilience, less reliance on debrief, and little to no fear of a public breakdown when confronted. For me and managing my OCD, I simply needed more time to write my papers. After facing these lectures, warts and all a few times, I was feeling so strong in myself that for my thesis project in third year, I took on my biggest trigger – Sexual Assault. Why this is a trigger is not important. What is important is that without the early support and trigger warnings, I wouldn’t have been there in the first place. I ask this question of the Anti-Folk, because I am mentally ill, am I not worthy of an education? Is my practice of psychology less valuable because I need a little more time? Should I be excluded from classes because I have a bio-chemical imbalance? Who else would you like to exclude? Don’t answer that.

 

That is all

That is all

These harmful and discriminatory attitudes make me so angry that I have to get out my reinforced soap box, pull my ranty-pants up to my arm pits, and get my advocate hat on. It deeply concerns me how callous some Anti-Folk can be towards survivors of trauma and people living with mental illness.

With regards to the comments that Millennial’s need bubble wrapping, I make only this point. Giving young people tools and resources is not bubble wrap; It’s support. Offering them choices and opportunities to speak and be heard may have some hope of reducing the horrific suicide rates in Australia. 

headspace  

Trigger warnings and suicide are not mutually exclusive. Being triggered can increase the likelihood of self-harm and suicide. So my question, again, to the Anti-Folk: If we understand the causal role of triggering, suicidal ideation, and suicide; and we know that trigger warnings can reduce this likelihood; why would you ban trigger warnings? Why would you knowingly risk a person’s life? If trigger warnings have nothing to do with you, then does it really impact your life? If your lecturer, for example, sent a bulk message with a trigger warning, are you diminished by knowing some details of the content you are about to cover? I wouldn’t think so; in fact it should encourage you to do some pre-reading. I have self-published articles with trigger warnings at the top and bottom. I take the risk seriously. Ironically, it will appear on top of this post as well. When I share mental health related articles on Facebook or Twitter I put up a warning. I want take care of my readers and friends. I want them to read and engage with the article. More to the point, I want them to come to me if they need support and “surprise” triggers would be a great way to damage trust. Moreover, I especially want to hear what they have to say if the content directly affects them. I certainly do not want to be apart of causing harm to anyone. I want to be apart of the solution.

beyondblue logo with web
One way of  arming people living with mental illness and survivors of trauma is
with choice. Autonomy over their emotional safety. This sense of emotional autonomy gets lost in the pain and fog of PTSD, depression, and anxiety & co. What Anti-Folk need to understand is that by offering a person the autonomy of choice, it gives them power. This power does not diminish anyone else. 

Furthermore, it saddens me that people still don’t understand how hard it can be to speak up for survivors of trauma and people living with mental illness. There’s still so much stigma around and it weighs on my mind. Look at the very language that the anti-folk uses. I believe this is broader evidence of the stigma towards people living with mental illness and victim blaming in the community. The fact that this is a thing is further evidence that mental health advocates have a long way to go in removing the fear and misconceptions around survivors and people living with mental illness. I can tell you from personal experience that stigma is very real.

I make one final analogy for the Anti-Folk to consider. When you go to a movie, you use the ratings classification as a guide to what to expect. If it’s rated PG you don’t expect to see Trainspotting style toilet dives. It prepares you, helps inform your expectations as does graphics & advertising. This is what a trigger warning is. Information to guide decision making. As an adult maybe you don’t want to see the latest PG movie, you prefer MA15+. So using the ratings classifications, you steer away from PG movies. The reverse may also be true. If you are a survivor of trauma or living with mental illness, a trigger warning is a guide to helping inform your decision to proceed with reading or viewing or not. Simple as that. 

Finally, if being thoughtful towards others makes me wrong; then damn it, I don’t want to be right.

Thanks for reading.

Pinky

Sir Lady Pinkelstien of Pinkelstien Manor

 

 

 

 

 

 

*I personally LOATHE the word ‘recovered’ in relation to my own mental health, I don’t feel it’s applicable to my personal experience. However, I am yet to find an appropriate synonym that can be as readily understood.

 

Ranty Pants: World Mental Health Day/Australian Mental Health Week

TRIGGER WARNING ## SUICIDE PTSD & OCD##

Lifeline

PLEASE TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF FIRST.

Hello Dear Reader,

World Mental Health Day (WMHD) is my favourite campaign, along with RUOK day and the Out of the Shadows. This year the ABC is showing a series of documentaries and shows on living with mental illness, I find these very triggering so I don’t watch them to save myself. However, I have it from very reliable sources that they are excellent and offer a powerful insight into what it is like for those of living with mental illness (for my Aussie friends here’s the link http://iview.abc.net.au/collection/423 ).

WMHD also reminds me of those I have lost over the years to mental illness. The pain of knowing that they suffered so much that death was the only way out, weighs on me heavily. Could we have done something? Or was the small window of opportunity missed? What can we learn and take with us to try and get it right next time? How do we honour their lives? Do we find a way to contain the grief and use that energy for something better? I certainly hope so.

To be honest with you Dear Reader, it is with great frustration to me, that my ideas and  thesis are currently gathering dust, while people and their families are suffering. Don’t get me wrong Dear Reader, I am not proposing that I have the cure-all, I am a scientist not a god; Female Scientist they aren't mythical creatures...promise I do however have another tool for reduction and prevention of suicide. I just need the chance to  the personification of destiny, necessity and fate, depicted as holding a spindledevelop and get it out into the communities that need it.

As a mental (and proud of it) myself, I feel my brothers and sisters pain. I agonise over their suffering. Yes, this is a part of my OCD and yes, it could be interpreted as me being “unstable” and in need of intensive treatment; but I put it to you my Dearest Reader, that if I can channel these feelings into something that is productive and positive, then aren’t I better off being unstable? It is because of the weight of this emotional burden that drives me to work so hard. The need to shed and ease the emotional pain I feel almost constantly. From the moment I determined I was going to get into uni, I have been bloody-minded about not just talking about trying to change things, but actually be brave and do it for my peeps.

Over the 3 years of my undergrad, I wanted to quit a lot; especially when I was triggered by diagnostics in 3rd year. That was a tough class for me. Not work wise (I already knew DSM-IV before I even started my degree. Yes, I am that much of a Geek-Lord) but listening to lectures on OCD and PTSD (and how narrow their definition and understanding is) was just a mine field of trigger points. I didn’t quit. In the end I would have a tantrum (read: OCD + PTSD episode) and work my arse off to get across the line. I tried to channel the anger (at least I think it was anger, naming my emotions is not something that comes naturally to me) into my thesis and later into my experiment. I was so focussed that I researched and wrote a theoretical thesis, executive summary, and presentation of my findings in 13 weeks. Again, I put to you Dear Reader that is was because of my OCD and possibly my PTSD that gave me the ability to complete and pass all my course work and write a 5000 word thesis.

Note the word ‘because’. We use this word so flippantly in our everyday language we often forget the gravity of it. ‘Because’ in this context means it would have been impossible feat for me without OCD and the focus it has gifted me. Moreover, I wish to note that I didn’t use ‘in spite of…’ as that implies that I only battled against it. And this is where my paradox enters <insert dramatic music> when I confess (Hello OCD!) that I did battle against a lot of the more cursed aspects of my OCD. A prominent example would be intrusive thoughts about failure and death.

I know I am always saying this, Dear Reader, but OCD/PTSD/MDD is a gift and a curse. The curse is dark and cruel but the gift is so extraordinary that it metanoniashould be celebrated.

trying to reconcile and accept the curses has kept me up at night. It dawned on me not long ago that if I took away the curse, would the gift remain so extraordinary? Is this another paradox? Is at the heart of it, you cannot have one without the other, no matter how much you dissect and hope that you will find a space where you can be just Extraordinary. The symbiotic nature of the relationship is so great that one can be defined by the other. Extraordinary.

Does this also mean that if I am ever able to be ‘cured’ of my afflictions; I would no longer be me? Would I lose my gifts? The very constructs on which I perceive to define me? If yes, maybe I’m better off with the proverbial devil I know.

The good news is no one knows what the future holds, that’s not even written yet, so for now I will remain an extraordinary mental and Geek-Lord.

I will continue with self-experimentation (my theory on comedy for depression is coming along nicely) and I will continue to try and be grateful for my gifts and try and shorten the visits from the curse.

Dear Reader, I leave you with this, if you love someone who does or may have a mental illness be kind and reach out to them. Even just sending a text of “I love you” has the potential to save a life.

Yours Always

Geek-Lord Pinkelstien

Sir Lady Pinkelstien of Pinkelstien Manor

An Open Letter to Mr Tony Abbott, Prime Minister of Australia.

Dear Mr Abbott,

I am writing to you today to air my thoughts on your proposed budget. I know you wont listen and if you did you would try to brush me off with one of your ridiculous three word slogans. Let me open by telling you a little about myself.

I am 30ish, educated, a mother and disabled. I live with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD) and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). Sometimes I do well, for me anyway, and at other times I struggle to do anything.  I receive a small pension from the government. I recently graduated from RMIT University with a degree in Applied Science (Psychology) and an ex-nurse. Like I said, I am well educated.

Your budget will destroy my family and my future. Your budget will rip out from under me all of my hard work over the last three years. I can forget about post-graduate studies thanks to your proposed changes to HECS. I wont even be able to afford to pay for my undergraduate, let alone any post-graduate study. Here’s the real kicker for me Mr Abbott, and excuse me while I well up a bit, I can’t work in psychology without post-graduate qualifications. I can’t even work as a Research Assistant without a master’s degree. I had already planned my master’s thesis; I have even written the theoretical paper underpinning my idea. All I needed to do was to apply for grant money and start the applied research. I can’t express how excited I was. I love research. My dream was starting to come true. Now, I can just forget about it. Thanks for that. There’s nothing like watching your dream disappear before your eyes to trip off a depressive cycle. Now I have to try and find a job with half an education. I will not be pursuing post-graduate studies as I will not go into debt so that my children can pay it off. I will not ask them to do that. You wouldn’t ask your children to do something like that? Would you?

Speaking of my children, what is to become of them? If your budget gets through, will they be able to go onto higher education if they wish? Further, if they do get in, how much will it cost them? Will they die in debt? As I wont be able to buy a place in a private college and given that I can’t afford my own education, I therefore highly doubt I will be able to afford theirs, what choices for a productive future will they have? Should I tell them to forget about any dreams of TAFE or university now, or should I break it to them slowly. Further, how should I go about explaining it to them?

Then there’s the GP tax and cuts to DSP (particularly for those of us with mental health disability), the butchering cuts to science and research, dismantling of the carbon tax, the severe cuts to the ABC and SBS and the hit list just goes on and on.

I am just one person and I consider myself very lucky that my partner has a good job and my parents are willing to help us out. It’s pretty humiliating asking your parents, at my age, to lend you some money so your child can go on an excursion. I’m not saying that the government should pay for everything. I actually support paying for my degree, under the current system.  What I am saying is the government should be compassionate, supportive, and inclusive. I don’t enjoy being on the pension. I want to go to work, but the work I am passionate about requires a high level of education. If I could complete my education, I would be able to give back 10 fold of what I took and I would happily pay if it meant that another person could be afforded the same opportunity. Education isn’t a luxury; it’s a human right. You were afforded a free education. How can you deny anyone any kind of education?

You know, we could have the next Professor Stephan Hawking in our midst and your budget would make no room for him or her in Australia. Not mention all the possible Professor’s that could be on Manus Island.

Just on Manus Island, we know you and your entire government are lying. It’s written all over your faces.

 

Pinky

 

 

Shipping Oars

The Australian Independent Media Network

shipping oars

Tony Abbott’s brief sojourn in Davos left most of us cringing and somewhat bemused as to the purpose of his journey.  He met with some Australian big business leaders and delivered a speech that had nothing to do with the stated priorities of the forum – the problem of increasing income inequality and the economics of climate change.  Le Figaro noted Abbott’s address as a footnote, quoting him as calling for more free trade, an idea that was a long way from the agenda – très loin de la thématique – of earlier gatherings.  In fact, Tony left before any of these meetings took place.

But he did fit in a few personal meetings.

With Peta Credlin glued to his side, Abbott showed his ignorance of geography and total ineptitude at small talk when meeting with World Economic Forum founder Klaus Schwab.  Tony had lined up for his usual…

View original post 1,472 more words

Ranty Pants: Reinforced Soap Box Edition #TRIGGER WARNING#

#TRIGGER WARNING#

Please note that this post could trigger off strong emotional reactions. Please take care of yourself and either don’t proceed or if after reading you feel crappy please contact your local services or jump online for online support.
If in Australia, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14

Lifeline

http://www.underthegunreview.net/2013/10/03/sinead-oconnor-writes-open-letter-to-miley-cyrus-no-one-who-cares-about-you-could-support-your-being-pimped/

My Dearest Reader,**

As most of you are probably aware, Miley Cyrus has been making a prig of herself. Seriously, her comments about Sinead O’Connor’s mental health made me rage more than usual. I was at a conference recently about Outrage in the disability sector. I have read some pretty horrible stories about abuse in the disability sector recently and Ms Cyrus’ comments were last straw. Ms O’Connor’s open letter was honest without being harsh and no one could argue that she was not reasonable through out this whole thing. I am fucking OUTRAGED that Ms Cyrus’ behaviour is considered acceptable. Ms O’Connor is right in her assertion that had Ms Cyrus’ comments been about thing else (race, religion, politics), Ms Cyrus would have been publicly bitched slapped for her transgressions. <breath Pinky> As a person living with mental illness I was fucking insulted.

I almost posted this on Facebook; I thought twice as this has never worked out well for me. Someone ALWAYS thinks it’s about them and I am not in the mood to defend my position. Things will be said, mainly by me, that will be regretted. I don’t need that kind of  agro at the moment. So to you, Dear Reader, I offer up my outrage.
Dear FBers,
As most of you know, I have struggled with mental illness most of my life. I was once ashamed and silent. Over the last 5 years I have learnt to speak up and push back. At times this has lead to bullying and harassment as well as well intended people being well…you know, well intended <awkward>.
What Ms O’Connor expresses here is absolutely true. Silence kills. This is why I am an out and proud mental. This is why I will be honest about my experience. I do sugar coat it most of the time. It’s not like I give brutal detail. This is why when you* try to stigmatise me and shove me into a box, I will tell you to “Go fuck yourself”. I will not accept other peoples “discomfort” as an excuse to patronise me or to treat me as if I am “slow” or “special”. I’m not stupid, I have distorted thinking patterns and even if I did have a learning disability of that nature, don’t talk to me like that.  I will agree that some of the things I have done and probably will continue to do in one way or another, are very fucking stupid/special. However, they are mine to learn from and not for anyone else to judge.
For those whom are uncomfortable with my discussions around my mental health, try living it. Try having to talk yourself through the most basic tasks, such as: checking the mail, calling a stranger, and asking for help. For one second, use the empathetic part of your brain (it’s in the front of your brain). Further, maybe if you had a bit more knowledge and I mean real knowledge, not your self help men are from mars bullshit. I’m talking a real understanding of the experiences of people (and yes we are people) living with a mental illness.
For me personally, my mental health status is only one part ( sometimes a big part ) of what makes me that strange creature I am. I also have other parts of my personality like my ability to make obscure references and Doctor Who quotes. There is also my love of history, my love of music and poetry and my love of 1920 – 1930’s fashion and my love shoes. I also am a bit of comedy geek and a politics nerd. To really fight stigma we need to start thinking, as a community, with a little more mindfulness. I am not at all suggesting that we should all have a group hug, but just a little courtesy, a little bit of thinking about others and what their story maybe. My questions to you would be, “What do you really know about the homeless man you walk past everyday?” If the answer is nothing, I would encourage you to find out or at least buy the man a coffee. I try to make a point of talking to homeless people, they are our greatest shame. What kind of place to we live in where there are people without a place to go? We’re shit is what we are.
I applaud Ms O’Conner for being a truly empathetic human being. When I learnt of Ms Cyrus’ comments I wanted to slap the little bitch. However, thankfully Ms O’Conner is far more gracious than I.
So if you are suffering in silence, afraid to speak out because of fear of the unknown, fear of the truth, or fear of the stigma, don’t worry, I would gladly punch anyone in the face on your behalf. Speak up, speak to anyone, please because you’re valuable.

Yours

Pinky***

*not ‘you’ but as in the general you. This post isn’t about any one person but a culmination of experience.

**Names have been change to protect the innocent.

*** This post is dedicated to all my friends who have battled mental illness both here and those who have gone.

An Open Letter

#TRIGGER WARNING#

Please note that this post could trigger off strong emotional reactions. Please take care of yourself and either don’t proceed or if after reading you feel crappy please contact your local services or jump online for online support.
If in Australia, please contact Lifeline on 13 11 14

Lifeline

For the context of this open letter, please read this article. http://www.stereogum.com/1507742/fiona-apple-blake-mills-newmark-theatre-portland-1032013/concert/

Dear Fiona Apple,

Suck on those lemons I just read an article of what happened at your show in Portland and I just wanted to let you know that I am thinking of you. I have battled with OCD/PTSD/MDD since childhood and can only kind of imagine what you must have felt. I’m sure I don’t have to translate thee acronyms for you, but as this is an open letter, so for those whom aren’t familiar; OCD: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder; PTSD: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder; MDD: Major Depressive Disorder. I am often tormented by them. Sometimes  by all three, sometimes just one. Depending on what is going on will depend how they gang up on me. What boggles my brain more is some of the gifts my presentation of these disorders gives me. Although I can be petrified of people, I do have a certain strength when it comes to understanding the psychology and behaviour of them. Which is why I am afraid of some of them. I’m am hyper honest (because I have been accused of lying by people when it wasn’t true) which can lead to “great confessions”. The greatest gift  is my ability to analyse those behaviours and the context in which they appear and make some sense of them. My unholy love for psychology (in nearly all its forms) and behavioural sciences is what drives me forward. My dreams will bring me neither riches nor glory but it will give hope and freedom to others.  I believe in what I am doing so passionately and ardently, that even if I don’t get a place in a master’s program, I will work on my theory anyway. I will get a job to fund my research. I imagine this is what music is for you. A drive that is so fundamental to who you are that you cannot ignore it. My doctor’s call it obsession and compulsion. I prefer the term life orienting. You can’t “sit with it” because if you don’t do something with it, it comes out in dysfunctional negative behaviours.  I could parrot off many theories, but I wont bore you as your music describes the paradoxical experience of high functioning mental illness in a far superior way than my science.

Blunt Card Is awesome. When I listen to ‘Every Single Night‘ there are times where I am forcing back tears. I know exactly what you mean but would have never known how to say it. Another song that affects me in the opposite way is “Extraordinary Machine“. The first time I read the lyrics I was like “WTF…Get out of my head woman!” Then I found out you and I are more akin than just a whole lot of songs. After learning of your own story,  when I listen to your music, a comforting sense of being understood comes over me.  I don’t believe your as fragile as some profess. I think you have so much strength. Looks can be deceiving, after all. I’m only 5’3 and am only just wearing proper grown up clothes at the tender age of 36. How I look seems to give people the right to give friendly advice on my small size. It’s so insulting. These people have no idea just how harmful some of the things they say to me can be. OCD is a blessing and a curse. The chronic self-doubt coupled with an incredible insight into the experiences of others,  can leave you going around and around until you question what you already know is true . On and on we go trying to prove to ourselves that we  deserve to be seen and heard as equal. I personally (try) reject that I am a broken human who needs fixing. I have been broken but something better came out of the pieces than stood there before. A better version of me, perhaps? 😛 <I apologise for the terrible joke>.

I can imagine your desire to retreat and avoid is strong. I can’t say I blame you. My heart stopped when I read the comment. I have  had similar experiences. The Crushingly trueshock and abandonment paired with a silent emptiness grabs you by the throat. Closely followed by the roaring thunder of anger and despair.  I applaud you for continuing. I’m not sure I could have made the same choice. I applaud you for asking the offender* to leave. In that moment you stood up for all of us who have battled mental illness and have had to live with the myths, stereotypes, and discrimination. I applaud you for the honesty in your music. I thank you for your ability to reach inside my head and give a voice to my conflict. You and your music remind me to “just keep going”. Your music teaches me to name my emotions and frustrations accurately. This is something I have struggled with for most of my life. You give me a voice that I don’t have. You are so brilliant at your craft, I would beg you to not deny us your art, the experience of seeing you do what you do best, which is playing live and sharing your music on that intimate level**.

I wish I had your gift for words so then I could take what is in my heart and mind and write them here. Then I could do for, what you do for me when I listen to your music; be a comfort and maybe you wouldn’t as feel  alone or misunderstood or whatever it is you want/need to feel.

For what it is worth, I think your amazing. You have such profound insight coupled with the gift of articulating those insights into music, I can only encourage you through open letters written with honest sentiment. I can’t help being a sentimentalist, one must find something safe to their hopes on.

Thanks for your time

Yours Always

Pinky

Links: see in text links and below

http://www.rollingstone.com/music/artists/fiona-apple/biography

*I use the term ‘offender’ not in the legal sense but as a “moral and social” offender, in other words it’s the polite way of saying the prick in the audience.

** This comment is based on the assumption that you chose retreat and avoid. I acknowledge its a big assumption. I hope the sentiment is clear. 

Australian Politics…Why I love to hate to love it.

I love an election. I love the trash media and their churning of “facts”, “spills”, and “downfalls”. This election however has me wringing my hands together. This election, unlike the last one, wont be about a moral vote. Well, not for me. This election I am voting directly for the Australian Labor Party (ALP). I know. I know. It hurts me too. So let me explain why and hopefully, Dear Reader, you will come to forgive me.

 

Election you say...

Election you say…

I have lost faith in the Greens. I don’t trust them with another another hung parliament. I am terrified that they will side with the NLP. Australia cannot afford Tony Abbott as PM. I have never been afraid for the future of my country the way I am now. Hell, I’m Australian! We have never had civil war.  I’d like to see an Australian Government that actually represents the people. In that I know I am asking too much. What happened to the working man’s utopia? What happened to 8 hours work, 8 hours rest, and 8 hours play that this country was founded on? Oh wait, it’s a punch line to a joke…or an advertising campaign.

Truth in politics. It can happen...

Truth in politics. It can happen…

Don’t get me wrong Dear Reader, I don’t think Abbott could cause a civil war, I do however see Australia returning to a ultra-conservative government and work choices. I personally would have to leave university as an Abbott led government would take away my disability pension and thus I would be forced back to work. I wouldn’t be qualified to actually work in the area I want to. I would have to go back to a low paying, brain numbing job, just like when Howard was in power. Not to mention Abbott’s personal opinions about gender, gay marriage, poor people, refugees and indigenous people influencing policy and governance. <shudder>

Mr Abbott didn't study history at school...well not Australian history.

Mr Abbott didn’t study history at school…well not Australian history*.

This is why I have to vote for the ALP directly because my dislike of Rudd (my opinions on him are punctuated with a colourful array of swear words) is not nearly as great as my fear of Abbott and NLP.

It is with a heavy heart that I made this decision early on in the election campaign. So I guess now all I can do, is strap myself in and hope that people see an Abbott led Australia is not an option if we wish to move into the future.

I will be covering the Downfall of Julia Gillard in a separate post as I believe that Australia’s first female PM deserves nothing less.

Lots of Love

Pinky
Cartoon_Pinky

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

* This is probably not true.

 

The weird things that happen to Pinky: Buying Cigarettes.

Dearest Reader,

I must tell you what happened to me last week. I was on my way home from taking the kids to a shopping centre and I needed to stop for petrol and cigarettes (ciggies)  (yes, I smoke and yes I know it’s bad for me, but it’s not the point of the story…so just shoosh). So I go to the local service station and filled my car with petrol. Keys and wallet in hand I went to the counter to pay for it and buy ciggies. I ask for them and the servo-dude asked me for ID. I looked at him and said:

“For real? I just drove in here…in a car.”

“ID please. I cannot sell you cigarette’s without seeing your ID”

I look over to my car; “But, I’m buying petrol as well…so doesn’t that kind of prove my age?”

“I need to see ID to sell you these cigarettes. Do you have ID?”

I start giggling; “You’re going to shit yourself when you see how old I am”

“ID please”

I hand over my drivers licence. “Those people in the car are my children FYI. How could I be under 18 with 2 teenagers and a toddler?”

The servo dude struggled to work out my age, maybe I shouldn’t have “helped” him answer the question by sarcastically saying:

“2013-1977=…”

The servo-dude’s eye’s suddenly go wide with the realisation that I am old enough to purchase the forbidden tobacco.

“I’m so sorry Sir.”

“Ma’am”

“Oh, sorry, but you see, someone lost their job…”

“I get it. Selling cigarettes to juveniles bad. Underage driving and purchasing petrol is okay”

A baffled look spread over his face.

I walked out of that servo really confused.  I’m not against the laws surrounding the selling of ciggies. I actually support them. I just felt a bit weird that if they really believed I was underage, shouldn’t they have questioned my driving as well?

This stuff happens to me all the time. It’s hilarious and a little depressing.

Thanks for listening

Yours

Pinky

Ranty Pants: So the next 4-6 months should be interesting…

**written while in pain and lacking adequate pain relief. Strong possibility that it makes no sense**

Dearest Reader,

I sit at my mac knowing that for the next few months I wont be able to talk very much. To fill you in, I’m having major dental surgery in late February. There are so many reason’s why this messes with my head. My hope is too vent some of those fears here and not come across as a poor little whingy princess who needs a large mug-a-concrete because this is more of a cathartic entry, for my own good, rather than anyone else.  I hope that by sharing, if anyone else is going through something similar, they will not feel alone for the short time it will take to read this blog.

 

As most of you know I am mental. I have child-on set OCD and PTSD. From the age of ten I have suffered with pushy wisdom teeth. Sadly I inherited my grandfather’s crappy teeth. Unlike my brother, whom on the first pain, ran to the dentist. Not me.

Please know that I’m not afraid of the dentist. I haven’t had a bad experience with one. Ever. I am afraid of being touched. In particularly,  my face. In the past I have had horrible flashbacks, when someone has touched me around the facial area, r where I have hit out and seriously hurt people. This disturbs me greatly. It’s taken me nearly two years to just go and see the dentist. Something I am not proud of. If I had gone two years ago, this would be over.

Believe it or not, Dear Reader, I knew the consequences of my choices. I just hoped for minimal damage. Hope didn’t really work. I face the next few months with limited ability to verbally communicate. It hurts to speak.  Smiling hurts. I have to take 4 ibuprofen and use a bucket of Listerine to brush my teeth. Which, at times, I have to do alone because I cry because of break through pain.

I love conversations. I love to hear about other peoples lives and how their experience has helped them evolve to the person they are today. The thing is, I need to be able to talk back. To ask questions.  Try not talking when getting to know someone. Feel how awkward it is. I don’t need help being awkward. It’s a gift I bring to every party.

It takes me 45 minutes to say goodbye to one person. Ask anyone who knows me. My father once joked that even after death they will hear me talking from 6 foot under. It’s funny because it’s true. “Shut Up, Ms Pinkelstien” was a common phrase uttered from my teacher’s lips. My mother often asked me after being on the phone to my girlfriend’s from school for four hours;

“What on earth could you two possibly have to talk about?”

I still talk to that girlfriend regularly, our conversations are short if they are under 3 hours. It’s wonderful.

 

Right now, I can’t have those conversations. I can, but only online. It’s not worth the agony. So, Pinky has to shut up for a bit. No mean feat.

Further, My Dearest Reader, I am in pain. All the time. I have friends with chronic pain, and I don’t even dare to think I know what it is like for them, I am having a mear glimpse into their world. It’s horrible. When you’re already a bit of a nutty fruit bar, it’s even more confronting. I can’t eat (triggers eating disorder), the anti-biotics, which dull the pain, are making a mess of my stomach, which is effecting the uptake of my other psych meds. Being allergic to codeine, the only pain killers I have are paracetamol and ibuprofen  in large doses. This of course messes up my already volatile stomach. I constantly feel sick. Constantly running a fever and require five hour naps during the day.

My mood is vile and I am nasty to my beloved family. I am intolerant of dickhead’s and am in a bitchy enough mood too call people on their dickheadary. I have said it a million times. ‘I’m not good at being sick’ and I don’t like to be taken care of. So not being able to speak much and constantly hurting and constantly feeling sick and impending surgery is really making me hard to live with and hard to like.

I don’t even have my sense of humour. Nothing is funny about how I am feeling right now.

The thing with the surgery, is the interruption to my psych meds. General Anaesthetic’s (GA’s) really mess with your brain chemicals and I am afraid of how I will feel over re-uptake. Zoloft is a nasty uptake. They all pretty much suck balls but Zoloft is particularly cruel. I can’t take any anti-anxiety meds because of allergies and my only option is to use antihistamine and be brave. So I get to recover from surgery, triggered off my nut, with antihistamine. FML people.

I’m not brave. I’m full of shit. I’ve learnt how to fake it so that certain types of people don’t come near me.  I don’t like confrontation and I don’t handle other people’s anger very well. Similar to Sheldon from Big Bang Theory.  I hope that I can go through with the operation. I hope that at the end of it, I can be brave and I wont cry. My mum said she would drag me there kicking and screaming then have me committed to psych. So that’s nice. Mr P said that he would support my mother. Surrounded! No way out. I can’t talk my way out of it. This makes me afraid because I don’t like to be out of control. I go all primal and not in a cute kinda arse kicking way but a scary “Come near me and I’ll fucking kill you” kind of way. I also become very belligerent and sound like a teenager. “You can’t make me”. Think Cartman from South Park.

So all the rotten parts of me have surfaced. I’m sure I will be making many apologies when all is said and done.

Thanks for listening.

 

Pinky

This post is dedicated to my friend JH. Thanks for the inspiration.