Social Stories

My End of the World Complex

I overreact. So much. So often that I can even feel it happening and try desperately to stuff it back down.

It’s only when I’m experiencing a depressive relapse, falling back into low moods and high anxiety. Every six months like clockwork. Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is helping a lot, it helps me feel productive. But the emotional response is still on overdrive.

Everything becomes the end of the world. It’s like an overdrive complex. All my emotions, my interpretations, my reactions are at extremes.

It has hit me hard today. I’m drowning under the ridiculousness of it all and trying to stuff down the behaviours that are bubbling up in response.

I left a horrible house I was living in for the final time today. Cleaned out all the rubbish. Put the stress of slum living behind me.

The housemates are staying. They weren’t in today. We had a lot of disagreements when we lived together. They wanted it to be like university – spending loads of time together, group meals, socialising, parties.

Unfortunately, I’m the only one with a full-time career – I leave for school at 7am and don’t tend to get home until way after 7. And my career is insanely social, I barely have a moment alone at school. I’m always on stage, performing. I love it so much. But it exhausts all of the extrovert out me. I get home and the introvert creeps into the empty space. The last thing I can bring myself to do is socialise during the two or so hours I have before climbing into bed and collapsing asleep.

But I got a message – or rather several messages in a row – from the girls, furious about the amount of rubbish left in the bins. I thought it was okay, but I understand. Bin collection is fortnightly. They might be concerned about having space for the next week’s rubbish. I offer to come get it in the morning and spread it across some bins in the area.

They keep going though. More and more messages telling me exactly why it is not okay, from each person phrased in a different way. I’m losing the will to do anything. The anxiety is rising. I cry for a good twenty minutes before I call my mum – who, by an odd twist of fate, lives a 40 minute drive away – and she offers to help me move it first thing in the morning. Then I get scared that she will shout at the girls and I’ll get even more backlash.

My brain goes on like this for ages. Everyone hates me. I can’t do anything right. Even my solutions cause more problems.

I get so stressed my stomach churns and I keep chucking up bile into my mouth.

I plan to cancel attending a party on Saturday which they’re going to, the birthday party for my best friend. I cry some more. I deactivate all social media and throw my phone down the back of the bed. I climb into my duvet and hide.

It’s dark and hot and comfortable and soothes my panic.

I only retreat from the cover when my kitten, ever the perfect level of joyful bonkers to offset my crazy, drops a ball in. She wants to play. She’s purring and rolling onto my face. I still cry as we play. But she lifts me up.

Then I decided to write this blog post, somewhere to put the insane overreactions and keep them to the side. I’m not sure if it’s helping or cathartic or whatever. But it’s something. It’s something when I feel like I can’t talk to anyone. Something to do instead of the end of the world.

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