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TW: I feel paralysed

I feel numb, I don't feel anything, just emptiness. I'm alive but not living. I'm too scared to live but too scared to die. I'm stuck in a haze, it's like being in a dreamlike state nothing feels real, I don't feel real. My memories feel like they belong to someone else. I feel cold and frozen. I think I've lost the real me.  

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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

Hey @Beautifullybroken

 

It sounds like you're struggling with being in a really dark place at the moment, I am so deeply sorry to hear how numb you have been feeling recently. I really want to help support you right now, would you be able to tell me what might help you most? We can talk about coping strategies, or you can just vent about how you're feeling, or we can talk about something else as a distraction Heart 

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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

@Andrea-RO right now I think I just need to talk. I think it might be anxiety that's making me numb. On top of that, I woke up with a heavy head and don't feel well-rested despite sleeping last night. I think thinking about the past in the cause of anxiety. I hate to admit that I haven't gotten over past trauma. I've been trying to deepen my faith because I don't think I can turn to anything for a sense of security. But I'm still struggling and the past leaves a bitter taste in my mouth. I want to go back to a time when things were simpler, but you can't go back and can only go forward.
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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

Happy to help with that @Beautifullybroken Smiley Happy 

 

It makes a lot of sense that anxiety would be making you feel really numb. Often what can happen when a person gets anxiety, is their brain goes into "fight or flight" mode. This can present itself in a lot of different ways, like making your heart beat faster, giving you a sick feeling in your stomach, or making you feel restless and jittery. Because the anxiety isn't necessarily from something that you can fight or run away from, your body starts to get really tired dealing with the physical and emotional response. What sometimes happens then, is your brain can start dulling how you feel across the board. This an automatic way of not feeling so overwhelmed, but unfortunately it can make you feel numb as you described. 

I really want to ensure you that you shouldn't beat yourself up about not having gotten over past trauma. When something bad happens to us it can colour the way we view the world, and it's not something easy or quick to get past. We effectively have re-teach the very deep and vulnerable part of ourselves that things can be ok, and even when they are not, we can overcome them. Something that a lot of people who have anxiety find helpful is grounding exercises. Often we think of mindfulness or meditation as something very foreign, or something we haven't tried before, but usually we already do it to some extent in our daily lives. For example, you mentioned that you were trying to deepen your faith at the moment, as an avenue of support. Potential during pray or reflection you can take the time to slow down and see the world for how it is, in that single moment. It can also help to have a physical object to focus on. This could be a rock, or a necklace, a piece of fabric or a flower - anything that makes you feel safe and comfortable. Do you have anything like that, that you use already?

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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

@Andrea-RO thanks for the support Smiley Happy. It was really helpful. I really need to work on living life more mindfully and praying more mindfully. I can't even do simple things like sit down and enjoy my meals or have a fully focused relaxation shower. My mind is constantly on overdrive. I think I've become so used to being in flight and fight mode it's hard to relax. It's going to take time and patience to break free from this cycle. I do have a special necklace that I could focus on.
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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

It is definitely a tough journey, so take it easy on yourself @Beautifullybroken. It will take time and will involve a lot of learning but it is worth it. You are not alone, a lot of people face this kind of situation. What you are doing is such a brave but challenging thing to do - remember that some days will be better than others. We will be here to listen, if you need Heart Is there anyone that you draw on to help you through this? It sounds like your faith is a strength that you call on. Do you want to tell us a bit more about that?

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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

@Taylor-RO I have my psychiatrist, friends and family. But I often find it hard to reach out to others. I feel some people don't know what to do, I can feel the uneasiness of my parents. I have a friend, she won't stop me from talking about it and will listen but suggests I should talk to my psychiatrist (which is fair enough since she is a friend and isn't trained professional). I'm slowly opening up to my psychiatrist. Since I have trust issues it takes me a while to open up. It's also hard considering I've felt so disconnected from others, I'm trying to reconnect. I was in an unhealthy cycle of isolating and cutting myself off from the world.

I've come to the realisation that we have so little control over a lot of things. It's a frightening realisation. I think that was the turning point. I had become so detached from people, my spirituality and at times myself. Even though I was still practising my faith, my heart still felt empty, like I wasn't really connected. I couldn't go on like that. I mean I grew up coming from an Islamic background and it's been a part of me since I was a kid. I've had ups and downs with faith, but I suppose that's a very normal experience. I've been searching for something to fill in the cracks of my brokenness but nothing really helped. So I've decided to reconnect.

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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

 @Beautifullybroken, I am glad to hear that you've got such a good support network to turn to when you're feeling low or struggling. It makes a lot of sense that it would be so difficult for you to open up to the world particularly because you've mentioned that you feel disconnected from others and the world, and it's hard for you to trust people. I know that the process of opening up and talking about how you feel in an honest way can be scary, frustrating, and difficult, but I do want to commend you for the fact that you are doing it. Even if you need to take things slowly, it's so admirable that you are working so hard on improving yourself Heart

It is extremely overwhelming when we realise that we are so small in compared to the huge size and majesty of not only the world, but the universe as well. I think all of us do go on our own journey to understand our place in world, and this can take a really long time to do. I think a natural process of developing our own identity is realising how we are different to others. In this process we often feel detached from the world because we are focusing on and developing those differences. But I do want to reassure you that this feeling does change over time, as you also begin to notice the similarities between yourself and others, which can make you feel more connected with everything. Sometimes it can really help to talk about this existential uncertainty with a spiritual leader or mentor. Do you have anyone that you would be able to open up and tlak to about this sort of thing?

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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

@Andrea I think I do know someone who I could talk to. I've been thinking of talking to someone haven't gotten the chance yet. I've been doing some reading. It's still overwhelming, I think things have been a little more intense for the past two days. It's hard not to be occupied with dark thoughts. I know they are only thoughts, and I don't have to act on them. A part of me says I deserve to be punished, but then there is this other part of me saying it's not logical to feel ashamed if the past trauma wasn't my fault. But it's still uncomfortable. There is a sense of irritation, restlessness and uneasiness. I'm so behind with uni too and that doesn't help with the situation.
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Re: TW: I feel paralysed

@Beautifullybroken  it's great that you have someone that you can talk to about these thoughts and feelings, it can be hard sometimes to put those things into words, but it can make a huge difference. You're absolutely right, you don't have to feel ashamed of trauma and nobody deserves to be punished. I'm sorry that you're still in such an uncomfortable space. 

 

Have you ever chatted to anyone from your uni counselling service? They can often be really helpful, and can support you to contact your tutors and lecturers if you need extensions or are struggling to stay on top of uni work - I know how stressful that can be, but they will usually do whatever they can to help if you can give them a heads up. Given the crazy circumstances we're all living in at the moment, you may find they will be more understanding than you think. 

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