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Things To Stop Doing

I am an Iraq war veteran. I came back with a case of PTSD and a biploar flareup. I subsequently went crazy in 2011.  I made it to nine years, and am currently permanently disabled from service-connected injury.

One of the weird things you say to me is “thanks for your service”.

The Army, as it happens, was the first straight gig I ever had. I was a failure at life until I joined. I became a soldier out of necessity. Do not thank me for stopping the trainwreck that I called a life by joining.

You also call me a hero who defended your freedom. No. I defended Halliburton’s rights to Iraqi oil. You did not gain an increase in freedom from me and my cohorts as we tore Iraq apart.

It was 13 years ago. Let it lie. What we’re really all about and what you are all about can be found in a great article here.

 

Today In “Dick Move, Cops”

It’s actually more than a dick move in one case because a girl with bipolar disorder is shot to death after her family asks police for help.

When Melissa Boarts of Montgomery, Alabama left home after threatening to commit suicide on Sunday, April 3, her parents called 911 hoping that someone would intervene to keep her from harming herself. To their horror, Auburn Police Department instead gunned her down.

Boarts suffered from bipolar disorder and was experiencing acute depression. She had scheduled an appointment for May to seek more effective medication for her disorder. Her parents, Terry and Michael Boarts, had come to her house on Sunday to pick up Melissa’s two-year-old daughter, Skylar, for their weekly outing. Boarts suddenly drove off, threatening to slit her wrists with a pocket knife.

When Melissa stopped at a rest area on Interstate 85, the family panicked, fearing that she would carry out her threats to cut her wrists. Realizing that traffic would prevent them from reaching her quickly, they called 911.

“We were thinking they could get her help,” Terry Boarts told the Montgomery Advertiser. She explained to the dispatcher that Melissa was bipolar and was threatening self-harm.

When the Boarts finally caught up to their daughter, a helicopter hovered overhead, and fourteen police cruisers surrounded her car. They were unable to see what was going on; the dispatcher told them simply that Melissa’s car had stopped. They sat at the scene for hours, assuming that her car had left the road and hit a tree. Finally, Michael Boarts asked for information from a police sergeant who was leaving the scene. “All I know,” the sergeant replied, “is that there is one female casualty.”

Are the Alabama police that bored that they have to respond to a suicide call with an army? What a fucking tragedy. Beyond tragedy. An atrocity.

Meanwhile, a school officer body slams a 12 year old:

San Antonio Independent School District Officer Joshua Kehm was captured on video brutally body-slamming a 12-year-old girl who attends Rhodes Middle School. 

…the kids in the hallway had been anticipating a fight between her and another girl.

“I was going up to her to tell her let’s go somewhere else so we could talk but that’s when the cop thought I was going at her,” Janissa says.

Police violence must be stopped. If you can’t bring a 12 year old to heel with anything other than a suplex, you’re in the wrong line of work.

 

 

 

Bipolar Blues

You may have taken a peek into my archives in 2011 while you were here. This blog was a conduit for all of my rage and mania. Looking back, some of it was interesting but it was mostly babble from a fevered brain. It’s almost embarrassing, but there it is. I’m leaving it, in case you want to see what bipolar disorder can make a person do.

Now I present the absurd, the stupid and the hopelessness that is infecting our government and our society to you. I hope I am doing an acceptable job.

I take new pills to write. But I wonder if I am in a funk, a major depressive streak, because I have CRS syndrome. And when I speak, I can’t put together a sentence correctly. My communication skills are in crisis. The only place I can function well is at this keyboard. Thinking is a chore.

This is interesting:

When you’re depressed, it is easy to doubt your abilities. So self-reported “fuzzy thinking” during bouts of depression is treated with suspicion. However, a new study suggests the description is accurate, concentration and decision making really are affected by mood disorders.

The results demonstrated that depression does not necessarily interfere with snap decision making, but it can. The controls were, on average, both more accurate and faster in responding than either of the groups with mood disorders.

The right posterior parietal cortex is considered important in the brain’s executive decision making However, rather than both disorders showing a similar effect, the control group’s level of activation in the region fell was below those with MDD and higher than those with bipolar disorder, suggesting that either too much, or too little activation can interfere with responses.

It’s already well-known that sufferers of bipolar disorder have different brains than a normal person. It’s good to see that science is studying the “down” fugues that bipolars experience. So excuse your bipolar if you have one. He or she is terrified that this is happening to them.

Asshole In A Foxhole

Todd Starnes, like most conservative pundits, loves to be on the wrong side of an issue. Yesterday on Fox News(where else), he lamented the plight of one Chaplain Wes Modder, who is in hot water for being a chaplain that no one wants to go to because he can’t stop proselytizing long enough for someone to earnestly confide in him:

Lt. Cmdr. Wes Modder has been accused of failing to show “tolerance and respect” in private counseling sessions regarding issues pertaining to faith, marriage and sexuality – specifically homosexuality.

Just a few months ago, Modder’s commander called him “the best of the best” and a “consummate professional leader” worthy of an early promotion.

But all that changed after Modder’s assistant, a married gay officer at the base who was upset about the minister’s views on same-sex relationships and homosexuality, filed a complaint against the chaplain.

Modder is also accused of:

* Telling a woman that she was “shaming herself in the eyes of God” for having premarital sex.

* Telling a student that homosexuality was wrong and that “the penis was meant for the vagina and not for the anus.”

* Berating an unmarried student for becoming pregnant.

Starnes says that he talked to Modder’s lawyer who denies all the allegations. What were you expecting his lawyer to say, Todd? Even Robert Durst’s lawyers insist on his innocence, dude.

I did the Army for nine years. I was never in need of a chaplain because I was an atheist who preferred to see a doctor rather than a pastor to help me get my shit together. When I got out of the service and landed in the bugfuck house in 2011, I requested to see a chaplain because I could. I also demanded my psychologist, which they were slow to get me. So I’m glad the guy was there. He felt I was in special need of an ear. At the time of our meeting, I was convinced I was Allah so I guess he felt obligated to hear me out, which I would wish on no one in retrospect. Anyway, the guy brought me a beautiful Bible, the kind with gilt edges and vellum-like pages. I managed to lose it during my stay at the whacko ward, along with a copy of A People’s History of The United States in graphic novel form. My point is, chaplains do one important thing; they listen. Even though the chaplain gave me a decidedly Christian solution to my crazy, he did hear me out and didn’t make any judgements on me because he knew I was in trouble. Theirs is not to judge, and certainly not to convert.

People like Modder don’t have any sense of self-awareness. They don’t know that Christian evangelism is fucking annoying at best and hurtful at worst. I am fully aware that that is their holy mission:to win souls. But that’s not a chaplain’s purview, and Starnes doesn’t get that-because he’s a virgin and is too chickenshit to join the military and understand whereof he speaks. He, like the good chaplain, thinks  his position is perfectly reasonable.

If you don’t want the counsel of a Christian chaplain – don’t go to a Christian chaplain.

Not every Christian is an asshole like you, Todd. I know of a few flavors of Christian much less arrogant, and far more forgiving than yours. They do the real Lord’s Work. Fuckstick.

Non-Bipolar Housecleaning

It seems that I have stabilized.

Feel free to have a look at what I was up to in the fateful year of 2011. I was having a nervous breakdown and on a wild manic spree. It’s unfortunate…all that writing, and none of it was sane. It makes me nervous to carry on, especially since there is virtually no point in writing a political-themed blog in 2015 because all the really good bloggers are now writing for bigger online enterprises. But I guess that’s not my worry. What I should worry about is whether I enjoy it. And I do. Every story leads me to new information. I need not fret about who looks at it or more specifically, who doesn’t. So I’ve cleaned a little house, taken away some of the obvious crazy stuff off the front page, and put in a new theme, which may be temporary. It’s a bit brighter in general, the links are easier to see. It makes me happy, for now. I shall try to stay that way. I am a moonbat, so many will say I am still writing gibberish. Part of me agrees with you. But I’ve been writing for 25 years now for fun. Some people do Sudoku. Some people like to doodle. This is what I do.

How Crazy I Really Was

I better get it all down before I forget. It all sounds like something besides mania but everyone insists that it is merely a manifestation of my disorder. If you’re new here, I went “away” for a while during a complete nervous breakdown. Strange things happened to me in the psych ward I will never understand.

It sounds like schizophrenia to me, or sheer psychosis. It isn’t the kind of manic that sends you out making purchases, or flitting about sexually. It was the kind of fugue-like thing that you associate with true full-bull crazy instead of these “episodes’. I can understand an episode. They’re easy to spot now. What I can’t explain is:

Why I thought I was Allah. I would roll around somersaulting in my room in a pseudo-judo manner, gathering my power from the dust on the floor. I would “ward” off evil coming from other areas of the psycho ward with arm motions, as if I were pushing them away with mighty power.

Now no party with Allah would be complete without a visit from the Muslim Brotherhood, right? So I decided that they were there to change Martin Luther King Day into some other holiday, god knows what. I swear I heard or hallucinated one of the orderlies saying “ain’t gonna be no more Martin Luther King day no more”. Nurses who were in on the plan glared at me or nodded to me in understanding of our idea.

I had a whole list of characters in there. I had Satan there, a schizophrenic who said he was a druid. I decided he was Satan because of a big crater of a scar right between his eyes above his forehead. He did not deny he was Satan, and I recommended that he “take it a little easier on people from now on” and he agreed as long as he was equal to me, God, Allah, whatever I thought I was. I said sure, just know who really runs the roost. Satan especially likes snack time, by the way, so in case you do go to a hell, ensure you are buried with graham crackers.

The saints came marching in. I believed that St. John and St. Timothy had come, largely due to their names. One of their names was actually St. John, and shared my first name. As God, it should surprise no one that my apocalyptic soothsayer St. John and I developed a keen friendship, feeding each others’ absurd paranoia about the agenda of the ward. I disconnected routers that I thought were microphones just for fun. We cracked a lot of jokes in the lunch room, until he thought the government was chasing him for an attempted plots against Janet Reno among others. And I had something to do with it because my wife had sent me into stir with a copy of Howard Zinn’s History of the American People, in graphic novel form. Nice book. Lost it.

I believed that black supremacists, Mansonites and Indian rights advocates were imprisoned with me. I believed that every time I got on the exercise bike, a car blew up in the parking lot, furthering my great plan. I thought a poor psychotic in a diaper might be my son, and tormented a poor unfortunate nurse who I believed was my ex-wife. I saw wendigos. I felt we were in the land of the dead at some point in that unit, waiting to be returned to life. I thought we might be on a giant spaceship that would unlock itself from the hospital and was certain I had an important role on the bridge. I thought I was jumping over the international day line. Hell, I even thought relatives were there-my dad, my dead Aunt Peg, and my real mother who I thought was Warhol ingenue Edie Sedgewick. Prisoner that I was, I arranged in weeds “SOS” in the hopes that someone would see us and release us during outside time.

This isn’t bipolar disorder. This is the thinking of a complete loon. I am still in disagreement with my doctor and wife on what happened to me in those weeks I spent there. I’ll let others make the call, but I remain unconvinced that I was acting like a bipolar. I probably won’t go that crazy again, reflecting on those terrifying three weeks. But it’s in me. It’s part of me. I don’t know how it happened, and probably never will.

Before The Breakdown

I have neglected completely to lay out the events which led me and others to decide I was a bipolar.

Work at the time was not going well for me. I was a sergeant in the Army, doing work for the “WTU”-short for Warrior Transition Unit”. We were tasked to watch over twelve soldiers apiece, monitoring their whereabouts, and generally making sure that soldiers were where they needed to be. I was considered an oddball, which I am used to, and I’m pretty sure everyone considered me a dumbass. Part of me felt they were right, part of me fought to felt that they were the dumbasses, neglecting to understand my contributions. There was this one time when the first sergeant, knowing that I was a medical supply tech, told me to make a matrix of drugs that were considered heavy hitters and controlled substances. I had to make him a graph of all the drugs we’d run into, and rate them for things like safe for alcohol, safe for driving, safe for mixing…

What’s wrong with that? What is wrong is that ALL psych meds are bad with alcohol, many with contraindications, and many for driving. I never completed that matrix; he had someone else do the dumb thing after I found out from a pharm tech that it is impossible to interpret each provider’s reasoning for prescribing the drugs they’d prescribe. They are allowed to override any precautions that the patient would take. The graph was impossible to complete. I knew it. He didn’t. He just wanted a pretty picture on the wall, probably fixing himself for a nice bullet on his review.

Months later, I became depressed and was put on Celexa. It opened the door to a high degree of clarity for me that I had not known in years. This was at a 10mg dose. As time progressed, we moved me up to 30mg, and then my behavior became erratic. The final straw came when I talked with a former sergeant major about the recent death of his son in Iraq. I admit it. I sat there and I cried in that room right next to the first sergeant. That was the end of my job, and from there on I was to be classified as Bipolar II.

As I cried outside, a former captain of mine came up and asked me why I was crying. I related the story to him, and he told something golden: “That’s your basic humanity showing.” I will never forget those words that let me know it was OK to be hurt. It just wasn’t OK to be hurt on the job. So, the Army dismissed me quickly, ending my career and ushering in the era of me as a disabled veteran. Who can tell who is right? Was I bipolar, or am I just sensitive?

Am I Allowed To Have A Mood?

It’s been a long hard road between getting over my mania and I’ve noticed something interesting about my treatment, at home and by relations: moods by me are no longer acceptable. Everyone gets to be in a mood, be it bad or good; if I’m in either, I’m suspected of going crazy again. Any other bipolar have this issue?

Try again. I’m just like you. You’ll know I’ve lost it again, believe me. I lost it so bad none of you will ever know the extent of it. I saw the abyss and it saw me.

Apparently No Sleep=Blog

This is like a midnight movie. It’s horrible, and if you’re like me, your evening is taking a turn south. That girl you brought won’t even come near you.

It seems that I can’t write unless I say bye-bye to sleep. I’m missing some of the drugs in my “arsenal” that is supposed to keep me sane, so now I get endless chatter between my ears because I have a brain that never shuts the fuck up unless beaten into submission. As of now, I have very little to write about-mammoth blogs eat all the political air and I wind up commenting on them before I hit ye olde blog. I don’t want to get too self-indulgent and write about my illness. Yet there is cause for worry. Staying up all night and trying to sleep, often fitfully in the day is not a good prescription for mental health… although, what the fuck am I to do? I can’t even lay down, I just sit and watch movies or toy with the computer. You can hardly blame me for the TV; “American Splendor”, and episode of The Twilight Zone and “Brazil” were recorded by my faithful TiVo.

I’m threatening body and brain with no sleep at all for the full twenty-four to see if I can wear them out. I’m falling into an ugly cycle if I stay up until sunrise and then try to sleep it off all afternoon. This bullshit stops today.

Stop Using This Word

“Manicky”.

Sometimes, when your bipolar is upset, you must have done something to upset your bipolar. You may have just used that word. Now they are telling you what an idiot you are for making up words.

Here’s a new word that is less offensive to bipolars. Try this out.

“Hypomanic”.

The educated bipolar is immediately calmed to find that someone has used proper medical terminology to explain its behavior. Don’t come to him and tell him/her he is “manicky”. He/she will likely tell you to get fucked if you can’t deal with the bipolar.

You of course are free to say whatever you want and certainly think whatever you want but it is my opinion that you are talking the fuck down to me if you dismiss me with a word like “manicky”.

One more thing that upsets bipolars is when you don’t acknowledge when they are depressed. There ARE two poles to this disorder and my question to those amateur psychiatrists running around is why are you not addressing the bipolar when he/she is depressed? You’re always happy as hell to declare me “manicky”, but my depression is irrelevant. I see. They would call it Manic Disorder. I do not have “Manic Disorder”, do I?

Try and remember this. It’s not a difficult one. Your respective bipolars will appreciate you for this.

 

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