by Jon Biddle
I don’t like birthdays. I don’t like public events, either, or socialising. And why should I live in such a weird paradigm? It doesn’t make any sense. In fact, isn’t this what an oxymoron is? I’ll explain: I am assertive, confident, and driven. And I can’t think of anything that truly scares me, yet social engagements and get-togethers and everything like them make me sweat. I even will bow out of work-related social events because I struggle to socialise outside of the workplace.
I can’t stand birthdays. Or, my birthday, to be exact. I hate the adulation and the celebration, and especially the spotlight. Why would it be on me for anything other than a cruel joke? Most of the time, I feel worthless and not worthy of anyone’s attention. I struggle to understand my validity in this world, quite possibly because it doesn’t exist. My validity, I mean.
I know the world exists. This is programming from my childhood. I always get interrupted while speaking reinforcing that lack of validity, so why not just stay quiet, I have nothing to say right?
If you see that I’m quiet, understand that it is for a reason. I’m not just giving everyone else in the room space to talk. What’s really happening at those moments is that my demons are gnawing away at my brain and I am trying to use my coping strategies to make them go away, or quieten them down a little at least. These thoughts skirt around food, mental pain and sometimes, suicide.
I can speak frankly about it because I’m tired of being ashamed of thinking this way and being quiet about it. I have lost more friends through suicide than military combat, and this saddens me. A brother set up a closed facebook page called ‘the flap sheet,’ it’s a military term anything in an emergency, consult the flap sheet, it will tell you what to do when the shit has hit the fan and you have lost the ability through high stress to make coherent decisions. Hence the name ‘flap sheet’ for a support facebook group, when someone calls, and they have already, there will always be someone very near that can answer the call.
More than 2/3 of soldiers that had joined are deeply affected by their military experiences. When this page was launched last wedesnday, over a thousand grunts joined. Some still serving and all thinking the same way. This isn’t just from time spent in the combat environment, but as young men, we come from challenging childhoods, I was no exception. I had PTSD long before anyone tried to shoot me or blow me up. Being the target of a narcisst throughout my childhood has done nothing for a whole raft of mental health issues.
I’m not in control of my feelings or thoughts. I drift from feelings of elation to feelings of utter despair. This is one of the reasons why I am so big. Not “gym-big” — my medical colleagues, in fact, all people, would say I am “fat.” Some time ago, I was diagnosed with complex PTSD. And to cut a long story short, one of the consequences was that I began binge eating. If you want the clinical name, it’s “Binge Eating Disorder” (Or BED.)
It’s kind of like bulimia or anorexia; it’s in the same ballpark at least but at the other end of the weight scale (no pun intended). And here’s something that most people don’t know about binge eating disorders: it’s a disease that can have devastating consequences. Forget those surface problems you hear about, fat, weight-related illnesses such as sore joints, breathing issues and diabetes. It runs much deeper on an emotional and psychosocial way. I suppose I should be pleased that my addiction is to food rather than something more dangerous. You’ve got to feel sorry for the alcoholics and drug addicts, sex addicts or those people who just can’t walk past a casino without wondering how the craps table is playing that night. Wow, back up a minute, sex addict, I could manage that (he said giggling)?
Having one too many Subway sandwiches or portions of fish and chips? It’s not the end of the world, or anywhere close to it. I’m propping up an industry, now that’s a good start. And then what about all the benefits that this brings to you, my dear reader? You get to enjoy my descent into madness, which has already happened: I am literally mad. So it’s a win-win-win situation. I get to eat whatever the fuck I want. Subway sandwiches and fish and chip businesses get some money. You get to read some horrible thoughts. Now isn’t that worth the trouble of my madness? I should have begun the descent into the dark underworld many years before, shouldn’t I?
Have you heard of Murder Monthly?
Murder Monthly is a subscription based short story, sent to you monthly. In that short story is the research from some societies’ most heinous killers. The twist of this is a fictional story that I have also included in the toe small eBook.
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