Depression: Life, Clarity, and Perception

INTRODUCTION
When one has a combination of Major Depressive Disorder and a very late Level 1 Autism diagnosis, their view of life and the world can be very dark.

Guilty, as charged.

The only way out of this dark hole involves years of therapy, years of hard work, and sometimes medication. In my case, all three are in play.

Before I got on my meds and felt some progress, I had a very dark view of people and the world around me.

Big changes are to be expected. So what helped, and what kind of change did I experience?


WHAT HELPED AND CHANGED?
One thing that helped greatly was psychiatric medications. It keeps rumination away, gives me the ability to shut off negative thoughts, and it allows room for me to decide how I will handle something emotionally.

Therapy brings discussion with a licensed professional to the fold. The therapist can offer up alternative behaviors, alternative views, and help guide my thoughts into a more positive direction.


DID IT HELP?
That depends on what you mean. If you’re talking about helping to remove depression as the default position, then it did. If you’re talking about easing that sensation of something boiling beneath the skin, then it did. If you’re talking about being less of a bummer in general, then it did. If you’re talking about not feeling stupid due to suffering Narcissistic abuse, then it did.

And if you’re talking about bringing the ability to look at the world and interact with it, without depression getting in the way, then it most definitely did.

But what did it not help? What still remains?


Tibo Bat has just ONE job, and that job is to take the edge off of difficult conversations.

MY MORTAL REMAINS
All of these things did help immensely. I am grateful that they were able to provide some positive results. The clarity that comes with it all is nothing short of incredible.

That said, there are things from the pre-help days that still remain.

I will confess that the continued presence of these artifacts surprises me because I thought they’d be gone, and it does not surprise me because these things turned out to be a product of Humanity, and NOT my depression.

For example, American life was turned into utter shit before I even got out of high school. A record number of Americans are suffering and dying, stranded on the streets, left starving and struggling, and there is no help or relief for them in sight.

I’ve always felt that it’s utter shit, and I still do.

Another thing that did not change is my feelings about other people. That is, humans are generally filth. Considering that I constantly push for ideas and systems that will benefit those of us who are at the bottom, this might be an odd take to accept from me.

Of course, I have a few decent friends. There are roughly 5-6 people in my life who are decent, caring, and work to give me hope. But that’s 5-6 people out of 8 BILLION.

What all of this means that, even if COVID were not a factor, I’d still NOT go out to meet new people or to have new experiences.

I still don’t trust authority figures, like police. All they do is write chicken-shit tickets because their boss told them that they need more money. I don’t have any money to give, so I’d be in a real jam if a motivated officer wanted to pull me over for some lame reason and write a ticket that cannot be fought because they block the fight.

Additionally, I still don’t trust humans in general. This is due primarily to the existence of Narcissists, as well as my long history with Narcissists, suffering the abuse that they dole out.

When a Narcissist enters your life, it is impossible to get them to leave. The law seemingly ALWAYS sides with the Narcissist. They never receive any punishment. But if I stand up to a Narcissist, then you can bet that I will get some type of punishment.

This is a typical Autistic observation: Two sets of rules and standards are ALWAYS at play. It’s one set for everyone else, and a special set just for me, that is typically far more punitive and unfair.

More than an observation, it is also an experience. It’s how things have actually, factually worked out.


A BIG CHOICE AHEAD
People who are toxically positive will be the first to tell you their life’s slogan.

You always have a choice.

When I hear that, I think of the people trapped in the World Trade Center on 9/11. They had the “choice” of either dying in the fire, or dying by jumping out of the window.

Some “choice” there.

But this choice that I have isn’t as bad. At least, I don’t think it’s as bad. I’ll bet my therapist will disagree with me.

Choice 1 involves being another turd in the toilet bowl of life. I can plop back into the yellowing waters and mix with all of the other turds, getting more and more filthy, broken, and runny, before getting flushed down the pipes. When I die, chances are good that this choice will be made by someone other than myself, and it will be accompanied by a great deal of terror and suffering.

Choice 2 involves staying home all the time and ingesting a controlled view of the world in an attempt to avoid some of that garbage. I can also avoid people to ensure that NO Narcissists get in. When I feel that I’ve had enough, and that I am ready, I can then take my own life on a day that I choose, in a way that I choose. This exit will be accompanied in a state of peace with no suffering involved.

I’ve been living in a world of Choice 2 since 2016. Most of that was in a horrible state of depression that I’d not wish upon anyone.


WHAT GUIDES THIS?
The way humans in general behave is one factor. But another more powerful factor is my life’s experience with Narcissistic abuse.

My first Narcissist was a person I had labeled as “my favorite uncle.” Fortunately, I cut him out of my life in 2003. Then there was an aunt and her three children, and I had labeled them as “my favorite aunt and cousins.” I cut the last one out of my life in 1993.

There were men, mostly musicians, whose Narcissistic abuse and outrageous behaviors had an impact on me

Romantically, things were particularly horrible My “first” girlfriend was a manipulative Narcissist. She was so bad that I don’t really think of her as my first girlfriend, mainly because she was sleeping with everyone else at school, except for me.

My ex-wife was a VERY destructive Narcissist. There were a few others. The last girlfriend I had was just as bad as my ex-wife, with the difference being that I lucked out when she walked out and never came back. I could only dream of my ex-wife doing this.

There are also those two Narcissists I’ve written about before. The Studio Narc who ripped me off and aided in the destruction of my life as I knew it, and the Cancer Narc who lied to me about having cancer. These two Narcs alone robbed me of 12 years of my life, and over $50,000.

The cherry on top of all of this is the realization and acknowledgement that my Autism attracts Narcissists to me like flies to shit.


WHAT ABOUT BOUNDARIES?
Q: Why did the Narcissist cross the road?

A: Because they thought it was a boundary.

Setting boundaries with people like this does not always work. My ex-wife is the most extreme case. I would leave, and she would follow. I’d tell her that we’re done, and she’d continue. I’d say we’re not talking anymore, and she keeps talking.

Going grey rock worked wonders in this case, and she doesn’t bother me today. However, the problem with the Grey Rock Method is that it’s something you employ after-the-fact, when someone has already violated you and your boundaries, and you’re struggling to get rid of them.

To be clear, I’m not referencing the past for a woe is me response, or to gain any type of victim status. It is imperative that I acknowledge and reference the past in order to prepare for the present and future.

I’ve been setting boundaries for myself during the past year. Boundaries are clear rules that I set, with the idea that I must respect these boundaries, for I was the one who developed them for my own safety and protection. No exceptions.

As I write this, with no influence of depression, I do feel that I have the confidence to put my foot down early on to assert and enforce my boundaries. But if a Narc decides that they’re going to destroy you, more than likely out of sheer boredom, then they will make your life a living hell, no matter how many boundaries you present and enforce.

In the past, I was able to recover from Narcissistic abuse because I was young and had a bit of a support system in my mother. However, my mother isn’t getting any younger, and I can’t really rely on that as much as I used to do.

I am convinced that one more episode with a Narcissist will destroy me to the point that I will not be able to recover, and death will be the only option; the only way out.

Narcissists are like body lice that will never go away. They always pick at you and itch relief is nowhere in sight.

EXAMPLES AND RESPONSES TO POTENTIAL MANIPULATION
There are certain things that Narcissists, Psychopaths, and others will use in order to try to manipulate you. Below are a few examples, along with my responses.

  • Lying – It is possible for them to lie and not get caught right away. The first time I catch a lie, that’s my cue to call the end to the relationship. They probably won’t see it that way and will hound, pester, and pick.
  • Critical, judgmental (pointing out weaknesses) – Constructive criticism from someone I trust is one thing. But with a new person, I won’t accept it. The first time they are critical or judgemental, even to someone else, that’s the end. They will say my standards are too high.
  • Strong emotions (negative & positive), anger, violent gestures, staring – This is where I have to look at them without blinking and let them know that I won’t be putting up with it. Makes me sound picky, but I am, and it’s for my own safety.
  • Appearing desperate – This is when I let them know that they need to find someone who can fulfill their desperate needs.
  • Being pressured for an immediate decision – Well, since you need a decision right now, my decision is No! Don’t complain or challenge it.
  • Use past statements to make you seem inconsistent – When they pull up the, “But YOU said this last time,” that’s my signal to move on.
  • Gaslighting – When they tell me things that start to lead me to question my own perception of reality, it is time to throw them out of my life unceremoniously.
  • Arguing after hearing “no” – See “being pressured” above.
  • Distorting your words – I won’t challenge them. I’ll just tell them to leave.
  • Acting immaturely – Being a big baby and whining about it will go nowhere with me. Go cry somewhere else.
  • Trying to bypass reason – It doesn’t compute. Get the fuck out.
  • “Follow your heart” or “go with gut feeling” – That has caused me problems throughout my life, so no thank you. Now get the fuck out.
  • Unclear answers, evasive – If you can’t provide a clear answer, then you can’t stay here. Go away.
  • Superficial charm – This kind of person doesn’t get very far with me, so they’re easy to keep out.
  • Avoiding surveillance cameras, onlookers – I really don’t know what to say or do about this one. But I did have this one girl who would set her phone up in hidden places and record me, hoping to get some kind of dirt.
  • Oversharing in an effort to gain reciprocity (to use it against you) – Should I venture out, my boundary and demand is to take things slowly.
  • Not reacting to your discomfort or obvious signs of wanting to end the discussion – Oddly enough, this is one that I have committed in the past. Being Autistic, I don’t always pick up on cues. I’m doing better with this, and I get practice. It’s a case of missing cues instead of being pushy. Someone who pushes will get removed and written off.
  • Saying one thing, but doing another – No excuses will be made for this.
  • Not listening – Those who don’t listen have no other reason to be here beyond destruction. They are out!
  • Physical contact when clearly uncomfortable – This is the behavior of a creep. No, thanks!
  • Emphasize a commonality – My last Narcissist actually engaged in mirroring, in an attempt to emphasize that we had lots of things in common. We both breathe oxygen, but I still don’t want you here.
  • Trying to make a connection – This comes from someone who wants to make something happen, or maybe they have other motives. Connections either happen or they do not.
  • Wanting you to do something that is not typical for the kind of relationship you have“If you loved me, then you’d rob that bank for me” won’t fly.

IN THE END
All of this boils down to one big question: Is the risk worth the reward? At my age, in my position, more and more I am thinking that the answer to that question is a resounding NO.

I suppose that my answer to that question might change down the road. That’s fine, because the other thing that has changed is me and my ability to stand up for myself.

My resolve is stronger. The only thing stronger than that is my contempt for humans in general. Because a person can be kind, generous, intelligent, and thoughtful, but people are destructive, mindless idiots.


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Published by DrumWild

Writing about drums, music, and philosophy.

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