Because That Phrase Doesn’t Work

buck up

Although I have heard this one often, sometimes in jest, some other more PC versions include “Can’t You Just Get it Together?” OR “Just Pull Yourself Back into the Saddle” OR “Get Your Shit Straight!”

For everyone’s information, Rosa is working very hard at getting her shit straight, at “bucking up,” if you will.  The problem, when you are also dealing with a mental illness, in addition to serious life stress — it may just not be so simple.

When Rosa stays at home all day, relaxing, chatting with friends on the Internet, reading blogs, reading on the Kindle, playing with the Kizzer dog, this is how she recharges.  Because people.  Well, people.  What can I say, being around people, it just drains the life right out of me.

The most current issue of the “just buck up” phrase comes from the fact that Rosa and her bipolarity have driven away oh-so-many people, and she finds herself with only a very few close friends and family members that she can rely on.  This means that, out of four people, there might not be someone to call at midnight, or five in the morning, or what have you.  With more resources, it might be easier.  I’d like to think it would be.

I have a stepsister and a best friend from grade school.  Both live close, both have kids and husbands.  In the past, they would always make time for me, but I guess I have worn them out.  The ups and downs of bipolar disorder, the cancelling meetings, the crying on the phone, my insistent attempts to get them to talk to me, perhaps me just seeming too desperate.  It is clear they have given up on me.  No, it’s really not in my head.  Other people see it too.

And there’s the question of my stepmom, who should love and care for me, at least in some small way, for the simple fact that she loves my dad.  Well, this is not the case.  She let it slip a couple weeks ago that she is “completely  unsympathetic to the mentally ill.”  What the FUCK would give you an idea to say that to me of all people.  She complained about people getting hospitalized, of which I actually  have twice and have thought about even more.  She had nothing good to say about a person with a mental illness — not even me.

And it occured to me — this woman does not love me, she does not respect me, and in fact she sees me as a burden on my father’s time.  She has actually said those words — burden on my father’s time.  No doubt that she can go up once a week to see my sister and spend 12 hours up there, or spend money and time on her daughter.  I am that red-headed step-child that no one wants around.  Save for Dad.

So after much introspection, I am left mainly with anger.  Anger for these people abandoning me in my life, when I could have used them most.  My dad came by last night and I cursed and yelled and cried and, while I think it was overwhelming for him, I think he needed to hear it.

He cried, because, well, this shit is sad.  The people I thought I could depend on are not there, and the list of people that I CAN depend on shrinks by the moment.  On my part, there will be no more contacting these people.  They have my number, my email, my web address, my home address.  They can figure out how to find me.

So here I am, at the end of the day, and I am done.done.done. with a large group of people.  I am not going to subject myself to heartache anymore, just as I suppose they wouldn’t themselves.

Remember this?


19 thoughts on “Because That Phrase Doesn’t Work

  1. Oh Rosa! 😦 There are no words…. or at least none that let me find them… I’m sending you hugs instead, and hoping that things somehow get better – and soon!

    Just out of interest, and because I’m nosy, Is your dad currently on the good side or the ignoreable side?


  2. I’m so sorry. I know how painful and hard it is to have to deal with this all alone and to have to come to terms with the fact that the people you need to be there for you aren’t. I’m sorry you’re having to go through this. You still deserve love and support, though. Their inability to give it isn’t a reflection on you.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Losing people seems to be one of the side effects of mental illness that few people talk openly about, and it’s possibly the worst of them all. I’m sorry you’re having such a rough time with not having enough support right now, especially given everything that’s going on in your life. I know it’s not the same, but I hope you’re able to keep in touch with your therapist.

    It’s funny that you mention how being around people drains you – Josh and I had a conversation about that yesterday. He prefers to spend most of his time away from groups and crowds or he gets too anxious. I need at least some time with other people every day or I get too depressed. Variety is the spice of life and we should all try to honor and celebrate the differences in our friends and loved ones. I wish those around you saw it that way.

    Sending much ❤ and lots of *HUGS*


  4. I read this last night, but I wanted to answer it when I wasn’t in bed and half asleep.

    The very definition of a friend is that he or she sticks with you through the rough patches. Some of us have more rough patches than others. Over the years, pretty much all my friends have dropped away — except ONE. We’ve been friends for more than 40 years, best friends for 30 of that. ONLY friends for at least 10. It’s just life.

    I had lots of friends when I had a party going on all the time and an open door. But life took us down different roads, landed us in different physical and mental spaces and places. I don’t know anyone my age who has more than one really close friend. Many people don’t have even that. It’s not just you and me. It’s what life does to relationships.

    Like you, I’ve been sick a LOT. I’ve had a LOT of crises and the road has been rough. Many people aren’t up for that. They just want someone to hang out with, go shopping and have parties with. I’m not that kind of friend. Probably neither are you. Real life for us isn’t about parties and shopping and gossip.

    Try not to take it too personally. It really. It’s just people being themselves. We can’t help who we are, though hopefully, we grow and change. Life will happen to them, too. It’s only a matter of when.

    FYI, when I got back from Israel in 1987, my father told me to please not move nearby — like the same city — because my problems were too much for him and I would upset his new wife. He wasn’t a step-anything. My real rat bastard father. And that wasn’t the worst of it by any means.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I am glad you commented. Your words here have consoled me and given me answers and advice. There is no better comment than that. Thank you, for this comment, and for just being you. If only there were more Marilyn Armstrong’s out there… y’all would be dangerous. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Marilyn made some excellent points, Rosa. I use to have more friends than I could imagine. Now, I have only a few. I think it’s just part of getting older – at least that’s what my friends tell.

    I’m not trying to discount your feelings though. How horrible to have people like your stepmom in your life. I assume that there’s no way to keep away from her, but I’d refrain from talking about anything to her. She sounds toxic and you don’t need that kind of poison in your life.

    Big giant bear hugs to you


    • Thanks Bradley! I think you and Marilyn are both right, about losing friends over time. It still sucks though. Still doesn’t seem right.
      My stepmom is avoided at all costs and has been for years. Gah.

      ((hugs)). 😀


  6. There’s a hella lot of deep thought going on here about your words, and those of others. Not on my game enough today to give justice to your words or come up with any of my own right now… but sure gonna come back to this when I can. XOXO


  7. Your stepmother is a fucking bitch!!! Sorry but it’s true. She is toxic waste and you need to avoid her poison at all costs, honey. I’m sorry you’re feeling depleted at the moment. Please know that you are loved and valued by many of us out here in Blogville. Hang in there and remember that loving kindness is what you need and deserve.


  8. I have no idea how an adult could say that.
    My mum is very mentally ill right now and is in a dark place. She separated from my dad, who has been ground down by her behaviour with her illness that he gives zero fucks now. My little sisters (18 and 16) are trying to understand mental illness. But it’s so hard to explain to people who just think that the person is playing up.
    Anyway I’m waffling. I hope your dad gets stronger soon too – I’ve said it before, but he sounds like an amazing person.


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