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Pandoren

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  1. Apologies for the delay in replying, it’s been quite the week and I haven’t been in the right headspace to make a response. Thanks for the answers. Evergreenforst4: “You did acknowledge that eating healthy and sleep can be improved.” Yes, and I also acknowledged my lack of intention to change this. Unfortunately I know myself in that situation. It’s something that I may need to address at some point but not now. I do have some vitamin chews already, which has never made me feel better. Where my diet is concerned I don’t exactly eat terribly- I’m not living off daily McD’s and chocolate, for example- but certainly I could lay off the casual junk food like crisps, biscuits etc. I’ve done trials of drinking lots of water and all that has done is made me take more frequent trips to the bathroom. I’ve never in my life found exercise fun. I rarely find ANYTHING fun. I’m going to try to increase my walking but that’s limited right now from an injury, plus how hot it is here at the moment. I’ve looked up various youtube videos related to exercise but aside from them being a chore to do I don’t have the space or privacy to follow them. Sleep… is something that undoubtedly has its roots in more than just practicalities. There’s a lot of emotional stuff involved there too. Once I actually go to sleep I sleep like a log and have trouble getting up again in the mornings. Darlene Dunkley: Thanks for your post. Where Socialising is concerned, it’s not just about my family. I’ve never been able to socialise well and at school I had very few friends. I work, so I have coworkers that I pass pleasantries and small conversations with. I can make small talk with local shop workers. While I’m certainly an introvert and a homebody, I’m not a total recluse. I just don’t connect with other people that way. Being around other people does not make me feel better. The vast majority of my interactions are online, which is socialisation indeed, but also very superficial. Generally speaking I don't really care about other people on any deep level. That's not to say I lack all empathy or compassion, but I don't really want to talk to people outside of the context I know them in and don't tend to make much of an effort to learn things about them that aren't immediately relevant. I sense that a lot of the time my interactions with people are in some way motivated by some kind of benefit to me, either something I immediately want from them or a future general possibility. Family are just the people who, in theory, are meant to care about your existence. Maybe one day I can make my own "so you hate people" wellness list lol
  2. I've had Depression since I was 11 (now 34). I've also been diagnosed with Anxiety (largely controlled on meds) and Asperger's with Schizoid traits. To tell the full story would take too much time and effort, but in brief my parents did not support me mentally as a teenager and without my latter diagnoses (Asperger's at 24) I was just left to fall into a protective bubble that left me unproductive, broken and very delayed into adulthood. I'm still living at home but don't have a good relationship with my parents, or any other family members. I don't doubt there's a genetic predisposition to my mental illness and that my family's actions have engrained worse aspects of it, but a lot of my depression now is self-perpetuating. I have no hopes or dreams for the future, no personal goals, nothing to feel positive about or work towards. Get your own house? Maybe I can afford one when I'm 50. When depression websites give action plans, they seem to always assume the reader is otherwise 'normal'. I'm not neurotypical, so what am I supposed to do? "Do exercise!" - Hard to want to do that and it doesn't change life circumstances. When I get back from a walk I don't come in through the door and all my life's problems are solved. "Go be around other people! Find connections!" - I have Asperger's and probably near full Schizoid Personality Disorder at this point. I don't get any enjoyment from being around other people. They are draining and make me uncomfortable. I have struggled and failed to keep relationships with the people who are supposed to love me the most, through failings on both sides. "Do things that make you happy!" - I could count the number of things that make me 'happy' on the thumbs of one hand. Things I used to like have frequently been destroyed- I liked animals, but a disastrous and traumatic first job with them has made it so I'll likely never work in that area again, as well as a lot of bad things with my pets in recent years. I'm attached to my car, but my mechanic wants it written off for corrosion. I used to enjoy writing, but I haven't written in a very long time and just never feel the heart to do it now. Inviting other people into the things that make me 'happy' tend to ruin it. "Write down what you want for the future!" - I literally have no idea. Honestly, as a teenager, I never expected to get to 34 to have to worry about it. "Find a job you love!" - That's a thing? "Go on meds and go to therapy!" - I took antidepressants as a teenager, it didn't work and didn't end well. I now have an anti-anxiety med that is also an anti-depressant. It works for the anxiety, it does not work for the depression. I've also done therapy/counselling but that hasn't worked either, probably largely because it requires the patient to form some kind of relationship with the therapist, which I'm not capable of doing. That's unfortunate, because I know I'm carrying my own bodyweight in emotional baggage. "Eat healthy and sleep well!" - Well, OK, I can take responsibility for this one. My sleep patterns have always been messed up and now I work a shift where I get home at 8pm so going to bed soon after that isn't an option. My eating isn't terrible but isn't the best. When the two best things in life are eating rubbish and sleeping in, they aren't things I'm giving up in a hurry. I honestly don't know what to do and suspect I may just spend the rest of my life getting older while going round in the same circles. :(
  3. As an asexual, I feel at pains to point out that disinterest in women =/= interest in men. I'm not saying he can't be gay but nothing you've said actually gives any evidence to say he's sexually interested in men.
  4. There are different forms of attraction, not least sexual attraction (who you are sexually attracted to), romantic attraction (who you want a relationship with) and aesthetic attraction (traits you find nice to look at)***. Often these things are aimed at the same target so many people don't differentiate, but for some people they are different (such as someone who is, say, heterosexual but aromantic, or, as sometimes happens bisexual homoromantic, asexual biromantic or whatever). Personally I believe that aesthetic attraction is related to sexuality but not sexual in itself- I think that (subconsciously as part of evolution etc) as well as using it to determine preferable traits in your target sex, a person can also use it to determine the most threatening competition for that target, if you see what I mean. Generally speaking, if your orientation ends in -sexual, then sexual attraction is the element concerned. "Gay" as a term, though, is sometimes used by homoromantic people regardless of whether or not they are also homosexual. As for the original question- I think it is up to the person themselves to analyse their feelings and decide if they feel bisexual as a label applies to them. If they fulfil a lot of the criteria as you describe them but are not sexually attracted to both and don't feel that the label applies to them, then I'd say not. It might be that "bi-" could be, if they wanted to label everything, a prefix for another type of attraction. (*** Could go on a while... platonic attraction, sensual attraction... there's a lot of things that make up our interactions if you really want to get deep into it)
  5. I'm asexual (someone who doesn't experience sexual attraction) so most people judge my sexuality! I've heard some horrendous things said (or even done) to other asexuals, but personally I've had people tell me I'm mentally ill (you know, besides the usual lol), need to see a doctor, that I'm missing out on the BEST THING EVER, that I should be a p*rn star, and I even had an offer to go to someone's house to be 'fixed'. It tends to be too much for people to understand that a) asexuality is totally possible and b) that I'm actually happy the way I am. I know that I don't experience something that most other people do but I don't *miss* having a sexuality, I have other interests and want to pursue my own life as I am. It's hard to be surrounded by people talking about sex all the time... every tv show or film has the obligatory sex interest (whenever a woman appears in a film, don't you just know it?) and it appears the Sexual Revolution didn't include the right not to have sex at all. Of course gay or asexual people have higher rates of depression than hetero people... why shouldn't they? Most asexuals aren't bothered by being asexual, they are upset by secondary issues such as societal bullying and lack of acceptance. I only hate the real morons who don't even try to understand or purposely are offensive, or people who use such dumb cliches that I've heard a hundred times and have no patience for, but in the end the emotion I feel the most is sadness at what other people are like. Oh, and as for religion? People like to say "oh, Christianity must love you!" but actually, no, they don't. It's one thing to be celibate and devote your life to God, but say you aren't interested and whoa, you are refusing God's gift of sexuality! You are a deviant! You are a closeted homosexual!
  6. Rainbow caterpillars, if sexuality is a spectrum, then it is ok to be between asexuality and what would be considered "normal" sexuality, the same with aromanticism/romanticism. On the Asexual Visibility and Education Network, we include what ended up being termed as "Grey" (also "Grey-A" for grey area or grey asexual) which is defined as the state where someone is excluded from full asexuality (or aromanticism, if grey-romantic) by way of having experienced sexual (or romantic) attraction but usually only does so at a low level or rarely, or otherwise in a way that alienates them from what sexuality is usually considered. I've defined that a little clumsily though. Of course, it is up to a person whether they define themselves as Grey or whether they just consider themselves gay, straight, bi, etc. While I am asexual, I define my romantic orientation as grey-romantic since I have experienced romantic attraction only a few times in my life and never at any real level of serious consideration and to be honest, the person would have to be insanely special to every warrant a part in my life. I'm far more aromantic than anything else.
  7. I'm not big on the LGBTetc scene but I know a few sites that are friendly and with a variety of ages, although not as specific as FtM alone (they serve both trans and non-binary people). I don't want to spam websites on here, but if you are interested in these, perhaps you can pm me :)
  8. If it is any consolation, I got a bad reaction to coming out to my mother (not disown me bad, but disappointment and "what did I do wrong" bad) but a few years later she's noticed I've gone to Pride twice and last time she was making encouraging comments (although what she was thinking at the time I guess I may never know). Maybe it will take a little time to get her head around the idea (especially if she ever imagined you getting married or having children and now she has to readjust her whole mental image) and then she'll be ok. Good luck :)
  9. Rather a bit of TMI in this: There was a programme on UK Channel 4 (iirc) recently called My Transsexual Summer. In Episode 2 (again iirc) they showed an actually post-op Phalloplasty and discussed how it was done. It took two years to create with skin from the arm (a permanent scarred section on the arm) and from the bottom (also a few scars there) and actually looked more realistic than I expected, although anyone who knew what to look for would recognise it I guess. He said he could get erections with a little pump hidden inside and still had his clitoris (I guess perhaps they could keep your reconstructed clitoris for sensitivity, I'm not sure how that would go) so he was capable of both intercourse and sexual pleasure. If you are considering this, it might be worth seeing if you can view the programme although it might have been timed out on the 4OD website now, I found it rather informative. Whatever happens, good luck and I hope you eventually find a way to be happy, whatever that may be.
  10. Thanks :) On a related note, I don't know if there is a thread already and tbh I haven't looked lol, but for those who don't know it and would like to, Channel 4 in the UK are doing an episode/miniseries on My Transsexual Summer, which I think started tonight.
  11. Symptom of the illness :( I'm not quite as bad by the sounds of things, but bad enough to be majorly disruptive to my life. I can't offer any advice but you are definitely not alone.
  12. I don't know if I'm allowed to say all these site names, but I'm sure a mod will give me a slap on the wrist if not. Anyways... Actually, the best and most accepting site I've ever been on for gender variations (you name it, we've got it) is the Asexual Visibility and Education Network. There's an entire forum section devoted to Gender and the guys on there are excellent about it and will call you whatever you want to be called. You don't have to be asexual to join but being an ally is a good idea. Alternatively, there is also Transyada.net which is a gender site that branched off from AVEN, although those guys are nuts lol they have the ability to turn a conversation from a to z in a few posts. What is Gender? is a site that is less insane but also helpful, so you might find that a useful place to explore yourself. Or have your brain explode from all the possibilities. I hope you work yourself out to your satisfaction :)
  13. As an asexual, I've heard of various treatments from all sides. Many asexuals, feeling alienated from society for being non-hetero, have turned to LGBT thinking that they are people who knows what it's like only to be faced with more of the same. A lot of them have found that LGBT members believe all humans are sexual so asexuals cannot possibly exist and are less than human for missing that part of a person, or that they are homosexuals in denial (and so get upset about how an asexual obviously sees it as shameful if they aren't accepting that part of themselves) or they are broken and need to see a doctor/therapist or whathaveyou. Thankfully I will say that there are LGBT (or GSA, or alternative) groups in parts of the country who have received our information, accepted, invited asexuals to their meetings and been generally nice people, even if the asexual has subsequently found themselves still isolated from the topics raised that they don't associate with. I've attended Pride London marches as part of an asexual group and in 2010 we got laughed at at various stages the length of the route, with some hurtful comments too. 2011 was thankfully a much better year, perhaps because we had more people and were less nervous as a unit. As others have said, even some members of non-hetero sexualities don't believe transgender (or other gender variations) exist or bisexuality exists, which I didn't find out until a few years ago and was amazed since I'd accepted it as soon as I heard it growing up. You would think that someone would be more open minded and willing to understand if they were put in a certain position, but in reality it isn't as general as that. There are bigots and idiots in whatever group of humans you care to name (and I do include asexuality in that, we've got our fair share too) but I think thankfully as a society we are quickly moving in the right direction.
  14. I've had four therapists now- one mutually didn't get on with me and later got made redundant, one could only see me for a set number of weeks, one was a total bigot and I left and the last was a "relational therapist", that is to say her method of working was through creating a bond and talking through stuff, but that wasn't an effective method of working with me so I'm now being referred to psychology. My advice is to try different methods of therapy if one didn't work for you (I'm sure you can find out about different forms online). If you think it was the right approach but the wrong therapist, then by all means go for it again. Perhaps write a list of things that helped you and didn't help you with your previous therapy, so a therapist can have a head start on methods. Also, if there are issues that are important to you but controversial to a therapist (my third therapist believed only in heterosexuality. As someone who doesn't fall into this category, I was appalled and asked my fourth therapist beforehand if my orientation would be an issue for her) find out what their stance is on that issue before you agree to any sessions, so you know you are being supported in the right areas.
  15. Perhaps write down a list of things you know she likes or that are meaningful to her and tailor your efforts to suit. Does she like animals? Maybe a cute or funny animal picture, or a lighthearted story summary involving animals. What time does she usually get up in the morning (yeah, this one might be a bit difficult if she's changed that habit)? When my friend's beloved pet died, I decided to set my alarm for Stupid O' Clock every morning to send her a text before she left for work so she started the day knowing I was thinking of her (and with hypersomnia, waking up was so not easy!) I also used to send her texts with a little mini story about her animals (you know, "once upon a time there was a gecko called... and he did [stupid thing] and his mummy said... the end ;) " ) which she liked. How this might go down with someone deeply suicidally depressed, I don't know. Since you mentioned low self esteem, maybe you could ease in a few compliments too? I'm not really good at this stuff, just thinking of ways you might be able to work, I don't know, 'I hope even one of my texts brings a smile to that beautiful face'. If you had face to face contact before all this happened, then maybe sporadically send her something. It doesn't have to be expensive; handmade stuff can show you've spent time over something. It could even be a letter rather than a text, which she can keep and read more closely to hand. It could be a picture of something she likes or something you've drawn for her or something you've crafted. I wouldn't do this too often though. When I was at my worst point in college, I had a grand total of one good friend. It was his job to be my rock, which was an awful position for him to be in. Without him, I wouldn't be here today. I usually initiated contact though, but I hope she does appreciate you being there for her and it gives her fuel for the fight.
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