Q:I kind of want to kill myself
If you are having thoughts of suicide, get help. I know it probably feels like you are at the very end of your rope, like you just want all the pain to end, like you are so tired of living with these feelings. It might feel like there is no hope, like things will never get better. Right now, things are dark and they really suck.
There is some part of you that still wants to live, though. It might be small, but it is there. I know that because you are still alive. I know that because you took the time to write this message. Some part of you is reaching out and looking for an answer that is not death. You are brave for reaching out.
What you need to do though, is reach out to the people in your community. There are people who want to help you. You do not have to go through this hard time alone.
I strongly encourage you to talk to someone that you know, in your personal life. Open up to a friend or family member, or someone else you can trust. It is so important to have the support of the people around you during this tough time.
Find a therapist. If you are having thoughts of suicide, things are bad enough to have help from a therapist. If you go to college, most likely you can get free counseling through your counseling center. Make an appointment with them. If you are in the community, start here: http://therapists.psychologytoday.com/rms/
I also highly encourage you to contact the Lifeline or another crises hotline. The people there are trained to talk to people who are struggling with suicidal thoughts and can link you up to resources in your area. Reach them by
Hold on to whatever part of you that made you write this message, and use that to help you reach out. People can help you. You can get through this.
Q:Can you help me? My best friend and I both suffer from anorexia. I want to recover but I am constantly faced with the triggers she brings. She doesn't want to recover but I do. I want to get better so badly, but every time I talk to her she tells me about her weight loss and it makes it so hard to stay on track. I don't know what to do.
Yay! We are so proud of you for beginning your recovery journey and have strong believe that you can reach all the goals you set. Sometimes it will be difficult, but do not let setbacks discourage you.
Having a friend dealing with the same disorder can be one of the best, yet one of the most challenging parts of recovery. It can be one of the best because you have someone to confide in that knows a lot about what you are going through. It can be challenging because that person may not want the same thing. It is important to remember that just because your friend has the same disorder, does not mean they know exactly what you are dealing with or how it affects you. Yes you can tell them how you feel, but in no way can they understand 100%. Every single thing a person experiences is 100% unique to that person. This goes for everything in life: trauma, disaster, celebrations, recovery, happy times, sad times, EVERYTHING. Each person will also respond in their own unique way.
Now, about your friend, since I don’t know her I can only try and guess what might be going on. You say your friend doesn’t want to recover but you do, and that she keeps bringing up triggering things. How do you know she doesn’t want to recover? Has she explicitly told you, “I do not ever want to recover!”? Or does she simply not take the same steps toward recovery that you do? Keep in mind that everyone’s experience and reactions are unique, which means recovery will be too. For some people it is harder than others, especially if they see someone so close to them going through the same thing at a different pace.
All best friends at one point or another will have some kind of friction in their relationship. How it is dealt with can make all the difference. You should take time to sit with your best friend and have a serious conversation. Talk to them about what you are going through and how you feel and what you want to accomplish. Also, talk to them about how they feel. Ask your friend what they really want and let them know that you are there for them no matter what. Encourage them to join you with recovery but talk about the fact that you will face different challenges, setbacks, and celebrations. If your friend is absolutely 100% against recovery for herself, explain how important your recovery is to you and that you need supportive people through it. Talk to them about the things they do (like talk about her weight loss) that are triggers for you and that you can’t discuss those things.
If all else fails, avoid the negativity. This may sound harsh, but you need to do what is best for you. Support is critical for all recovery. If your best friend is not supportive, find other people in your life who are. Talk to other friends, parents, relatives, teachers, and anyone else who you are comfortable sharing with. You can also look for local or online recovery support groups to help you along your journey.
Friends are like trees. There are some that are like the leaves, they are only there for certain “seasons of your life”. Then there are the ones that are like the branches, they are there for you until things get to be too much for them to handle then they “break off” or leave. But the best friends to have are your roots. Those are the ones that are there for you no matter what. They support you at all times and you never have to question whether they are loyal or not.
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Q:I was wondering is paranoia is a form of anxiety?
Let me begin with paranoia is not a “form” of anything. Paranoia is more of a sign of something that has its own signs and symptoms. The same goes for anxiety. Anxiety and fear can influence paranoia and paranoia can influence conditions such as anxiety. Confusing? Yes a bit. Let me try and explain it more clearly.
Paranoia is a thought process that is often influenced by other factors such as fear and anxiety. These influences can stem from many things including medical and psychological conditions. Paranoia thinking often includes beliefs of persecution, conspiracy, or threat to oneself often to the point of delusion. Paranoia also comes with its own warning signs and symptoms that may include any number of the following:
- suspicious; unfounded suspicions; believes others are plotting against him/her
- preoccupied with unsupported doubts about friends or associates
- reluctant to confide in others due to a fear that information may be used against him/her
- reads negative meanings into innocuous remarks
- bears grudges
- perceives attacks on his/her reputation that are not clear to others, and is quick to counterattack
- maintains unfounded suspicions regarding the fidelity of a spouse or significant other
There are different types of paranoia (conjugal paranoia, erotomania, and hypochondriacal paranoia), as well as different types of paranoid disorders (paranoid personality and paranoid schizophrenia). Each of these has its own extensive and specific guidelines and diagnoses criteria.
Anxiety is an unpleasant state of inner turmoil (or more simply put, unpleasant feelings of dread over anticipated events), that is often accompanied by nervous behavior. Symptoms of anxiety may include any number of the following:
- Feeling nervous
- Feeling powerless
- Having a feeling of impending danger, panic or doom
- Increased heart rate
- Breathing rapidly
- Feeling weak or tired
- Trouble concentrating or thinking about anything other than the present worry
There are different types of anxiety (selective mutism and test performance anxiety) and anxiety disorders (panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, and post-traumatic stress disorder). Just like paranoia, each of these has its own extensive and specific guidelines and diagnoses criteria.
As with any medical condition, getting a proper diagnosis and treatment options should be done through the appropriate medical practitioner. If you or someone you know may be suffering from any of these symptoms seek help from a professional.
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