30 October 2009

For Sharon—

Sharon, from the comment you made to my post below, I know you must feel that you mean well by passing along “the perfect scripture” and to remind me that the people at the church are my friends. However, while on the surface everyone is nice—and I acknowledge that they have been there when I have needed them during trying times by praying for me—as soon as I walk out the door, that’s it. Yes, A and I actually had lunch the Thursday before my debacle; she brought me my cell phone before I was transferred to the psych ward, and has texted me a couple of times since (which I have patently refused to respond). D did call once after I missed the second service wondering if I was OK or sick, or something; and no, I did not return her call either.

It’s not that I believe they don’t care. I believe there is an intrinsic obligation from Godly Christians to feel they “ought” to care because it is their duty. There is no friendship base there. There is no level playing field. I have nothing in common with anyone. I am the only single, queer, mental case of the lot. How could anyone possible begin to relate to me—to be able to truly “get it?” A friend is someone who is there no matter what whenever you need them. And I can’t operate with just one friend because, realistically speaking, one person may not be able to be “there” due to his or her own personal obligations at that time. Everyone at the church is married and has (or will be having) children. They are all wrapped up in their own lives and obligations. I am a mere blip on the radar screen. With the exception of A and D, there has never been any interaction outside of church (and those were limited at best and the one time A and I actually made plans, I had to initiate the action—something that I am extremely uncomfortable doing). OK, yes, A was truly there when I needed her as she did bring me my cell phone. But as with all of the couples, my only down time is after 1900 on weekdays and weekends—the time they all spend with their spouses/family. I feel as though I am an intruder taking away from their time together. And I don’t want to be the fifth wheel, either—easily the situation since I am the only single person there.

There are just too many people at the church right now. When I walk through those doors, I feel paralyzed for fear that someone will speak to me. I have felt, crossing that threshold of just wanting to stand there and quietly walk out the door, hoping that no one notices me. I can’t be myself, so I put on my façade and pretend that all is well. What should I say? That I am full of uncontrollable rage; don’t forget that I am queer and missing being a part of that community I so desperately want to belong; oh yeah, and by the way, I tried to commit suicide—and most likely will again (it’s all I think about. But have no fear, I will not make the same mistake I did last time)? I don’t want to have scripture quoted to me; I don’t want to be prayed for. I just want to be left alone. You see, that is the conundrum that bipolar and borderline personality persons face. I ache so much for contact, yet at the same time, I am repulsed by it. I can’t walk into a room full of people without feeling so full of fear and anxiety. I don’t expect you, or any of the others to understand that.

So, that brings everything back full circle. No one at the church can possibly understand what I am going through, much less know who the real “me” is. All interactions have been and would continue to be quite superficial at best. I am tired of the façade I must present every single Sunday. Sure, I let my hair down when I was facing that strike, being laid off, and that Six Sigma training I was terrified of taking—but those issues in and of themselves are also superficial. I won’t share anything about who Alix really is for fear that I will become someone to avoid so that they don’t have to deal with my “issues.” Then when that happens, everything has boiled to the surface and, once again, I will see their subtle detachment slowly begin to occur as I have seen with other people to whom I have attempted to reach out over the years of my life. Very simply put, I am tired of the rollercoaster ride—my life such as it is. I’m done with it all.

Surprised as I am, I appreciate the time you took to make the comment. I am not trying to trivialize your effort, but the simplistic approach of dashing off a scripture and telling me of course that I still have a group of friends only validates my perceptions, hence this post.©2009


  1. Oh Alix. Much as I cannot relate to your specific situation with Sharon, I do completely empathise with the idea that social contact is both desired and yest simultaneously repugnant. I agree. People outside mental illness, with the ver best will in the world, are unlikely to totally 'get' this.

    BPD and bipolar can (and damn we do) make life unbearable. We can't expect others to understand that, merely to respect the fact that they can't but we do. I hope the people in your real life can cone round to this.

    At the end of the day, though, as you've stated, you feel alienated from the Church and its congregation - and that can't be good for you. Having said that, although I am personally an atheist, I know through friends that churches can be accepting of being gay, and indeed of being mad - but it can be hard work to find one of such acceptance.

    Good luck and, as ever, take care if yourself - I await the next installment with baited breath. I loved your recent anti-C comment on my blog :-)

    Talk soon xxx

  2. To be fair, SI, my being a dyke has never been an issue out loud. My pastor knew I was when I first started attending and welcomed me with the caveat (understandably so… that as the pastor he believed in what the Bible said and did think it was a sin). I respected his comment and I just chalked it up to agreeing to disagree. However, with the exception of one other church member, no one ever talked about that whole situation with me. I felt like they just didn’t want to acknowledge that fact. No, I never felt judged, per se, but it’s kinda like the orchestrations within a dysfunctional family. It just was never talked about. While I could talk about this with my pastor without ever feeling judged, I didn’t feel that freedom with other church members. And that was who I was—my identity.

    I then made a decision after being there for a while (after being shown the door at a previous church because I was queer), that I did truly want a personal relationship with God. That meant that I had to examine my life as it related to the words in the Bible. As a result, I left the gay community that I had been such a part of for so many years. It was extremely difficult to cut myself off that way, but in my heart, I wanted my relationship with God more (there are a few posts that detail the struggle). And, at the time, my BP and BPD was in balance.

    However, even before the BP and BPD started flaming after I had to quit the meds, I had begun to miss the gay community, the queer politics—everything. I have always been an out, in-your-face dyke and a political activist. It was where I belonged. I made a difference. I began questioning everything all over again. What was so wrong about being queer? It certainly wasn’t something I CHOSE (geez, I don’t even want to have that argument again). I don’t even know who I am anymore.

    As always, thanks so much for your cherished support, luv. It does make a difference I want you to know.

  3. Alix,
    It’s nice to speak with you again. I had not gone any where – just wanted to allow you the respect as my friend to be left alone if that is what you requested. Thank you for allowing me to be myself with you. I have always tried to be a friend to you in the most open and honest way that I know how. I may not relate specifically to things you deal with – the same way you can’t relate specifically to the things I deal with in my life. I’ve always known who you are but have always seen you through God’s eyes. Your facade was always transparent to me – but that never stopped me from trying to be your friend. I’ve always tried to be there when you called or texted – and tried to let you know that I was still there many other times. I’ve invested a great deal of time, energy and prayers in our friendship – maybe not going out to eat or to the movies – but I’ve still considered you a friend. And still do. No matter what you decide in the coming days – I’ll still be your friend. And as a friend – the most valuable thing I can do for you – is pray for you – whether or not you want me to or appreciate it now or never. As always – your friend – and still praying.
    Love, Sharon