In the stress of modern life, how little room is left for that most comfortable vanity that whispers in our ears that failures are not faults!

23 Aug

No shit.

I got reamed out at work yesterday. Ok, maybe not reamed, but spoken to firmly and clearly about the issues I’ve been having lately.

I am not used to failure. Anything I do fail at, I fail almost on purpose. Things I care about-I don’t screw those up.

So to have a conversation that left me wondering, “Do I need to worry about losing my job now?” was more than a little freaky.

I’ve been with my current employer 7 years next month. For someone with bipolar that was untreated, this is pretty cool, so I’m rather proud of it. But I constantly worry that I’ll be thrown over in favour of the new, someone smarter, someone better. I worry that I cannot be that person.

It has been clear since I returned from my little “leave” that certain people aren’t impressed with me, and it leaves me wanting to scream. I didn’t do it on purpose. This stress is making me feel like I’ll end up back there again, because suddenly I worry about how we’d pay for little things like the mortgage and food if I lost my job, or needed to take a longer stretch off from work.

Mostly, I’m so seething pissed at myself for fucking up that it’s not even funny. I’m better than that. My brain however, seems to have a different agenda, and I feel so lost and scared within all of it. I am not used to stress, or at least not used to stress that I feel. I’ve spent so many years internalizing or ignoring anything stressful that I’m almost paralyzed by it now. I don’t recognize this feeling, all this worry and shame.

Maybe I should just go join the fucking army and be done with it. At least then I’d stay employed.

7 Responses to “In the stress of modern life, how little room is left for that most comfortable vanity that whispers in our ears that failures are not faults!”

  1. Jennifer August 23, 2007 at 10:02 am #


    I’m sorry Thor. I wish I had some advice. 😦

  2. peppylady August 23, 2007 at 10:56 am #

    Sorry to hear about the others at work but it happen every place.

    My old client Callie is bipolar also and one of my Aunts believe there no such things as bipolar and it just an excuses to throw a fit.

    Plus I’ve even known a few people thinks all mental illness is a form of retardation.

    I was looking at your post of yesterday and wonder if I can be come part of spill your guts. I’m not part of word press or vomit comit.

  3. Bon August 23, 2007 at 11:11 am #

    dude. that stress sucks. i tend towards the same feelings about failure, or others’ perception of my failure…the worry and shame cycle, the feeling like i get smaller every time i think about it…and it’s pretty vicious.

    will an outside voice saying “you didn’t fuck up?” help?

    prob’ly not. but you didn’t. i know maybe by your own standards – that you be strong and together and carry the load – that you did…but those are tough standards, friend. everybody needs a little permission not to be perfect sometimes, especially when you’ve got shit like bipolar that you’re carrying along with all those high, high expectations. even though there are consequences to your hospitalization in July…and i bet there are, at work and maybe even at home…the problems other people have with it are theirs.


    but i’m still sorry for the stress and the worry and the shame. you don’t deserve that.

  4. Marcy August 23, 2007 at 12:39 pm #

    Humph, shame on your work people. I hope some enlightenment rains hails down on them soon.

    For anything that may be real failure (yeah, sometimes we do that), I hope you and the others will be able to work through it.

  5. bine August 23, 2007 at 2:05 pm #

    do i get this right, that was not your boss talking to you but your co-workers? what is this, some mobbing thing? i can’t believe it. do they have any idea what you are dealing with?
    how is your boss behaving these days? do you feel she may be coming at you this way, too? up to now it sounded like she only dropped some remarks. i still refuse to believe your work’s not good enough for them.
    sorry to hear about that. i hope they calm down.

  6. thordora August 23, 2007 at 2:13 pm #

    They don’t get it. And I’ll never be able to explain it, not in a million years.

    Some of it is that my boss is SUPER busy, and overwhelmed from the sounds of things. But still, I hate dealing with this crap.

  7. Caitlin August 24, 2007 at 10:16 pm #

    I guess it’s really hard for people who haven’t lived with bipolar (either their own or a loved one’s) to understand that if you could stop the bipolar and just be normal, you would. For the last year my ex and I were together, changing meds was almost like throwing darts in that we wanted to knock out the bad symptoms without accidentally knocking out the good things, and finding out neither of us had great aim. As stressful as it was on me, I imagine it was quite few order of magnitudes more stressful and scary for him.

    I guess people are so used to pills solving things that they have a hard time understanding that a bipolar person isn’t “cured” after finishing a course of meds or after going to counseling. I wish they would cut you a little more slack, since every place I’ve worked at when someone was hospitalized for a physical ailment, everyone falls over themselves to ease that person’s recovery period (cookies, flowers, and offering to help catch them up). I wish being hospitalized for mental illness carried the same grace period as being hospitalized for a physical illness does. And from the sounds of it, you’ve done an admirable job for the last 7 years, even though you were undiagnosed for most of it.

    I hope the flying pasta in the sky graces your work office with a big heap of understanding.

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