John | Podcasting
John | Podcasting

Episode · 4 years ago

Abandonment and Isolation, Bipolar Style

ABOUT THIS EPISODE

The grooves in your record dictate the songs you play your entire life. John Emotions shares his experience with abandonment and isolation resulting from his Bipolar Disorder diagnosis. Learn how to connect with other Bipolar people via BipolarParty.com

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It's only and now it's online Bible. This stylecom join emotions with Bible style. You. Hey, it's me. Thanks for having me this episode. My bipolar episode today is about abandonment and isolation alone, so shout out to the gorillas there. That song is titled Appropriately Enough. All alone. Love that song. So, yeah, today we're going to talk about abandonment. I'm recording live from my little studio in Rainy San Francisco. Got Some rainy weather and you might hear cars go by. Remember, I'm not going to keep repeating this every episode, but so, like if you're new and you hear noise in the background, that's kind of intentional. Couple episodes back I started talking about moving to a different office and then I moved to a new office and now I have a new studio. It's right where I wanted it to be in many ways. I'll talk about that later in the podcast. But yeah, so part of that is I'm like literally like if three stories, maybe forty feet above a busy intersection in the heart of downtown San Francisco. All right, cool, that said. Man, have you been? I know I'm pretty sporadic at putting out podcasts and I apologize, but you...

...have bipolar disorder, presumably, so I think you get it and I thank you for that. So my head is kind of settled down. I'm not sure how to explain it. I've been in a mixed state, which is to the to the new folks, it's having its being depressed, actively depressed, having depression, clinical depression, at the same time as having features of mania which in it just feels like crazy. I don't know how to describe it any better. I felt like this when I first got diagnosed. You want to God, do I have to say trigger warning? I don't normally say trigger warning. That's kind of implied in a show like this. But so when I get in a mixed state is when I feel most at danger of myself because I'm still depressed, still sad, still not not just sad, had not. You know, don't confuse sadness with depression, but I'm also sad on top of being depressed, and I also have lots of energies and lots of creativity. So I'm if I, if I let that go the wrong direction, it leads to bad places really quickly. So anyway, trying to avoid that. But that's where I've been lately just Whoa, Whoa, whoa. However, the move has settled down, starting to find out more and more about my new job, which is a crazy ass job. So much I mean it's like the impossible job. It can never be done perfectly, which kind of sucks, but I'm also like one of the perfect people for this jobs. Takes a special person to do the work I'm doing and when I tell you what I do later, you'll get it anyway. So yeah, that's that's where I'm at San Francisco, explaining away the cars going up the wet street and you're listening to a podcast that talks about this stuff. All Right, I will honor your time more effectively. So anyway,...

...through my mix state, I'll actually I was going somewhere with the story. I just get sidetracked. So anyway I was I was going to thank some people, Tracy and Liz for the nice emails that emailed me. John at Bipolar stylecom and and you know write me thoughtful, thankful emails about the podcast, which totally shocked me. I forget. I look at the podcast statistics and there's a bunch of downloads, but they don't match up at all with my twitter followers, who are also really cool and active. But there's no correlation, apparently, very, very little. So sometimes I just get, you know, depressed, like I was a couple of weeks ago, and wonder what's it all about, why I might even doing this is it's ridiculous. And you know, my initial motivation is to just have an output to get, you know, express the vitriol and just get all the poison out of my system just by talking it out. I can't make it to an in person group every week, so this kind of helps and in a way this helps build a digital community as well, which is helpful to me because I tend to move a lot and I like to have some consistency. Yeah, it's been it's been a trip, but anyway. So, Tracy and Liz and Sean, you guys have all been super helpful, probably more helpful than you realized at the time. I ended up reading your emails. So, you know, big hugs to you guys, and thanks for the email. I really appreciate that. I also want to give a huge, huge shout out to the people at Bipolar Party. All those people at bipolar PARTYCOM are fantastic. It's kind of like fight club for bipolar people. You don't really talk about what happens there at all and aside from me talking about...

...it now, you don't really you know, it's not a thing a lot of people talk about, you know, because there's not a lot of people with bipolar disorder to begin with and the few of us that have it not meant to know about it. So you're welcome to go there. I'm trying to keep that a very safe place to communicate. It's not anonymous, but it is a private so we're not sharing anything in the main channels on the podcast. There's one specific channel for the PODCAST. So if you're in there and you want to say something or have an idea for the show, then jump on in. Yeah, would love to hear from you. How do you get there? Easy, go to bipolar PARTYCOM, not bipolar patty like your stassess. Oh Man, I'm not going to get over that. So yeah, bipolar PARTYCOM. Just go there, log in. If you're a slack user, you'll know what to do immediately. If you've never used slack, think of it as instant messenger. It just basically a new thing. Some millennials came around and rebranded instant messaging and now it's a thing. Oh, everybody uses slack, but yeah, I mean if you're old school, it's like instant messenger or Yahoo Messenger or whatever. Just we use slack for Bipolar Party. That's as simple as it. I carried around in my pocket and kind of we do peer to peer support on the go, whether it's on my phone or on my desktop or the laptop on the bus wherever. I'm just kidding, I don't use the laptop on the bus in this neighborhood. The point is, if you go to bipolar PARTYCOM and join us in our slack room, you'll have a connection to more and more people as it grows, especially people from overseas who are there late at night, which is awesome, because a lot of us are manic a lot of the time. In fact, to be in the group you really should have mania. It's...

...not just for just uniqu depressive people. I get too many depressives around me and it brings me down. So Bipolar Party really is for people with both depression and mania. Don't just go up in there and dumping all your depression on us. Got It cool. Don't mean to be harsh, but there are plenty of depression only places. There are not many meet up groups for manic people. Feel me. It's funny that all kind of dovetails into today's quote unquote, topic about abandonment and isolation. So I didn't you know. You it's hard to put the pieces together until after you've, you know, seen them all and turn them all over face up, if you put in a puzzle together. What I'm saying is you have to have lived through certain instances in life to look back on them to kind of figure out what things affected you and made you the person you are. So I've done a lot of brain research. I'm a brain research hobbyists for the last, you know, decade or so and just as a lay person, I like to be able to explain to other lay people how or we know what's wrong with my brain, because a lot of people think, oh, yeah, that's Johnny's he's awesome, just doesn't live up to his potential because one thing or another, and I'm not to endo labels, which this is why the show is called bipolar style and not bipolar disorder. Just, you know, it's a matter of preference that just feel there's some stigma attached to the word disorder. Go figure all that. I digressed too much. Let me focus myself here again. So with the whole abandonment thing. When I first was a young kid, I was abandoned. I was at first, I felt abandon when my parents divorced, and then by the time I was fourteen I was actually abandoned because nobody else could deal with me. And you know, thinking back through all the you know, various times in my childhood where I very,...

...very vivid memories, I recall very specific instances of me crying for no reason. And I know now. I mean I remember the circumstance now clearly as an adult, and I'm like, HMM, it's weird. Wonder why that wasn't ever checked out. Now I'm not placing any blame. I get along with my parents. It's just fine. Now we're not close, but it's because of after all those years of brain research, I found out how you know, your brain is basically like, say you collect a vinyl. You know how vinyl works. Basically, the GROOVES are grooves are cut into your record and that's the song that the record placed forevermore. You have to melt it down and regroove it to play any other tune. Well, that's very similar to how the brain works. Now, the problem with being abandoned as a young kid is that your record grooves are playing a song that says, Hey, you suck, you're worthless, nobody wants you, nobody needs you, get the fuck out of here. And so, if that's the song you're hearing over and over again, why? Because you're not getting any help, you're not getting any therapy or not getting any medication. There's nothing going on for you because you are out of the loop. You just are not being cared for. You've been abandoned. Well, it kind of becomes a vicious cycle. You start to attract relationships that you swear are going to abandon you and you accuse them of I swear to going to abandon me one day enough times and eventually they're like, oh, dude, shut the fuck up, I'm leaving right so you kind of create this self fulfilling prophecy in a way, and that you just become the person that you didn't want to become. You feel me. has this ever happened to you? I bet it has. And when you're abandoned, when you're young, you. I'm here. I'm only speaking on behalf of myself. Of course, it's my own experience. For some reason I speak in the terms of you. I came I had a sales background, so kind of project out, but I'm not talking about you particularly. Obviously I don't know you that well anyway. So...

...let me just back up. But I hate being when people get Super Annal about the words you use. It just drives me crazy. It's conversational shortcut. You get what the Fuck I'm saying. Let me finish talking. And let's not underestimate the human need for attachments like the up. Let's consider the opposite of abandonment, attachment, right attachment to your family, to your friends, to your loved one. So, in Maslow's famous hierarchy of needs, just below food and shelter is human attachment. It's like your attachment to your people. So what happens when you're detached is you lose all your bearings. You don't have anything to latch onto. You've become like a ship floating in the sea without a map or rudder. You just kind of list listen. You don't know what to do. But when you have so many emotions as a bipolar person. It makes your head want to pop because, no, imagine if I can't even put together a metaphor for this, I guess it's the pirate ship with no sale, no rudder, stuck out at sea with lit bombs all over it. That's the that's the best I can do right now, but that's kind of what you feel like when you just set aside, you just abandoned out to the wind, just cast aside. And what's kind of doubly fucked is I'm not saying it only happens with bipolar disorder, but if you have bipolar disorder and it's not diagnosed and you are abandoned, those feelings are multiplied by magnitude when done over time. I definitely think that's what contributed to my borderline personality disorder, which is another similar but different disorder. Currently there's talk by researchers that think it might be the same disorder, more like on a spectrum, but that's not been completely clarified or anything,...

...but just consider that. So what I'm saying is that having extreme emotions by way of bipolar disorder put in a shitty situation, I think can cause plenty of other disorders. Again, I'm no scientist, I'm speaking from my own experience, but having bipolar disorder untreated, undiagnosed, then I end up having panic disorders, anxiety disorders, post traumatic stress from being kicked after kicked out of House after House after House after house. By the time I was in the twelve grade of high school, I'd been to twelve different schools and nobody thought to take me to the hospital to have my head checked out up into that point. The one time I went the doctor said to my mom, yeah, okay, I need to see you alone here next week and we never went back. So we'll never know at what point all of this could have been helped earlier. But what do you do? I guess. I guess the point of this podcast is what do you don't do? Maybe don't abandon people. That's it's so easy to say from a person who has been abandoned, but I guess in a lot of ways we may abandon others and just not realize it. So I'm trying to get kind of more deep into my thought, little more meditative and just try to flip it around. It's like, well, maybe it's calm and maybe it's because other people have perceived that I've abandoned them, and my fall back as always. Yeah, but I was sick and we all know now that I was sick then. So can't I get another pass? And the answers invariably no. Like all the bridges I've burned, they're burned. are still they're still burned. I see the people on the other side of the river waved to him. Hey, what's up? Fuck face, but you know, there's no going back. Those bridges are burned the way they've treated me. They've been forgiven, but...

I'd have no need for them in my life now, knowing the type of person they are, the type of person that was so boldly and blatantly abandoned in you turn your back on you in many cases stab you in the back. Why do you need a person like that in your life? It's funny in a lot of ways, you know, after practice over the years, I'm like, well, I'm just fucking saying the obvious. But I'm telling you, if you're newly diagnosed with bipolar disorder and that diagnosis starts getting around your social circles, people are going to start treating you differently. Just here to remind you that that is on them. You're still normal. You know what I mean by by yesterday standards, before your diagnosis. If today's the first day you were diagnosed, honestly, you're the same person you were yesterday. A LOT OF PEOPLE GET clarity out of their diagnosis and I hope, if you're new to this, that it helped gain some clarity. You're not just an asshole. You have a disease that makes you appear to be in that way. Sorry to tell you that that's the that's the symptoms, but anyway, you have it, but now you don't. And you know I'm not trying to make light of it. I just do because I've dealt with it for so long I have no other way to to address it. I love the old Elvis Costello Line. I used to be disgusted and now I try to be amused, try to that's that's often how I'd look at life these days. But the abandonment thing, it just it doesn't go away. So so in my case, for example, I was abandoned in my mind. I felt like I was kicked out, which I was. You know, my parents kicked me out, my grandparents. I had nowhere to live. And I had to. I couch surf and sleep behind my drum set in people's garages and things like that. I don't know if that qualifies as homeless, but it sure felt untethered from society. So that kind of gray kind of carved that path at that was the groove in my record. Man, things got squared away when I'm at a lady, great, stable life. I ended up living a kind of ideal leave it to beaver life.

You know what I'm saying. It's in America. There was an old timey show from the black and white TV days where everything was just perfect. In fact, the House I stayed in with the wife look just like that house. We had kids, the whole thing, and then something happened. Then she divorced me. That was fucked. Now again, it fit with the pattern in my head that, oh wait, that's fine, that's normal. I expect this because I am disposable. I'm a disposable human. I fucking bought a website called disposable dad's back in the day, like I just got. I was going to start a club of like all of the men that had been thrown out. Then I found out about the quote unquote and men's rights activists and I figured that my idea was sounded too close to that, because the idea was not the same at all. It all had to do with abandonment. I don't I think men's rights activists and activism has more to do with anger and resentment against women, turning them down then what I'm talking about as a disposable dad, for one, you know it's an alliteration and with the marketing background, the DD sound. You know, disposable Dad'scom. Hey, I was going to have a club again because I was abandoned and it was trying to find my tribe. Here's the thing. You're not a disposable dad long enough to sustain a club that would help other disposable dads. Eventually you go out, you get laid again, you start seeing your kids, you get your work back on schedule. You know, everything works itself out and you don't have energy to be the disposable dad and your self esteem increases and then you just don't even think of yourself that way anymore. But there are definitely dudes around the planet right now that feel like they're disposable dad. So cheers to all you disposable DADS. Especially if you've got a mental disorder like bipolar style. The idea for doing this whole bit about abandonment,...

...because kind of got over it, although I mean it is my fucking song. The grooves of abandonment are written in my record. But you know, you learned to live with it. It's painful. But I had to go to court recently to deal with some family court matters, which is always a blast, gotta love that, and it brought back a lot of those old feelings of abandonment. But what it really struck me and gave me a new sense of abandonment was how fucking callous those court people are. The commissioner, like the wanter be judge there, who she was, okay, but the fucking public guy, whoever, I don't know it is that exact title, is the guy who thinks he's being noble by going after dudes who have no money. That guy, that motherfucker right there. So I try. I was poking around the court a while to try to find out, like, who helps the mentally disabled through court cases? And the long and short of it is, and that's particular jurisdiction, nobody. Nobody helps the mentally disabled. So I thought there might be a like an American with disabilities act, kind of law that helped us. Nope. Thought there might be some disability organizations. Nope. There's like one like disability dot org, but that's just a fucking law firm, you know, like ambulance chasers. NOPE, whatever. I don't know if their ambulance chasers or not, but whatever. Get what I meant? If you go to something like disability dot org, you don't expect a for profit law firm. What else? I looked high and low, basically, and ultimately there was no help. So again I not only had the kind of refreshed abandonment issues from when I was divorced, I have new abandonment issues from a system that just doesn't give a fuck. Like four years and years, they just they just don't care. Not only that, they are actively opposing you, they're aggressive, their assertive towards you and it's hate to say it, but in this particular place it's still dudes anyway. Not My point. My point is back to abandonment and isolation and which...

...kind of fast forwards to where I work now. It's not too jumpy as it well, what the fuck we got to get out of here. Got It, got to keep steppy. So okay, the whole isolation thing. So my new job? I am I have a position. I'M A director. Can you believe they hired me as a director? I'M A director at a nonprofit that runs housing for disabled vets and Basically Street people, homeless people that are coming off the streets that have some form of disability. Basically, this is like the last chance saloon housing for the people on the lowest of low rungs in American society. So I see firsthand every day. I've got a hundred and sixty rooms here. You know what it looks like? It looks like I have a hundred and sixty boxes with unwanted, abandoned humans isolated in them. I'm not sure the best way to convey their stories, but I guarantee you they are super compelling. I sit in the lobby and talk to these folks, but mostly listen to these folks and it is amazing where they came from, what they came from and what they've become, which is a constant reminder that no matter what your station in life, you could always drop to the bottom, whether it's a you know, a physical disability or a mental disability. So I guess this part of the show would be a good part for you to play for your parents or your family or your spouse or your partners who don't believe that you have bipolar disorder, because left untreated and worse, abandoned, you could end up like one of these people in these little boxes. Unfortunately, I'm blessed. Apparently I've earned it. Work for whatever you want to say, but I have a nice apartment, which feels really weird. I have a nice apartment in the building where all these little tiny roach infested boxes are gross. Anyway, no roaches in my place.

You get my point, though, stressful. So basically, I run the building and there's a couple of social workers here, completely overwhelmed. Everything's broken, there's no money to fix anything. I got to do some kind of documentary on this place, but I don't even know where to start. It's overwhelming. So I'll share a tidbits about my role as the Director of this nonprofit, as a housing place in San Francisco as we go along. If that's interesting to you, I just whatever. Sometimes you'll get stressed from my voice or here sense frustration. Clearly it's not you, it's it's my job. It's trying to do the impossible. So I'm not even sure where to start getting all these hundred and sixty people out of isolation. We have a lobby putting down some jazz concerts once a month. I'm going to get some comedians in here. It should be great. We're doing some cool things now, but still it's like this. Yeah, it's just like broke down palace or something. I don't is that a thing? Broke Down Palace? Yeah, well, look up Saro hotels. In America. They have a thing called sroro hotel. It's kind of like a hostile. It's basically a lot of rooms are there's no cooking. It's basically like a hostil, you know, there's no cooking, there's community bathrooms and you have a very small room with the bed and, you know, dresser and that sort of thing. But it's kind of trippy. But anyway, I could see if you're an international traveler, that's all you need. You want it cheap and quick and in and out. But these are old people at the end of their lives, stuffed into these little boxes. They can hardly move out. I mean just because they're so they're not ambulatory, they can't move like they got walkers and wheelchairs so that it's so sad. I don't know how to deal with that. If you've ever worked in that community, let's share notes. Go over to bipolar party. We can have a side conversation. But man,...

...sorry, sorry to ramble on about my job. Honey, tell me about your day. HMM, it's great, no kidding. Oh, I know, I hate her. Yeah, okay, and enough of that. So, yeah, thanks for checking this out. I just wanted to kind of crack the egg open on abandonment and isolation and just remind people how serious those grooves you're cutting into your record are if you're abandoning anybody. So now I'm hyper vigilant on making sure people know, hey, I'm still here for you. I can't maybe I can't do much. You know, I'm sick sometimes, like sometimes I can't do anything, but I'm always there in heart and spirit and I'll get on the Internet if I'm if I can whatever, but I'm I just want to let people know, hey, I'm not abandoning you, I'm still here and I wish people would do the same for me. Like a recent sting. I'll leave you with this. So, as a as a grown up now who thinks he's over his abandonment issues, here's one thing that stung me and it stung me last year too when it happened as well. So maybe it's happened to you, but we'll see. Yeah, let me explain. So I live in downtown San Francisco and if you live in any downtown Area New York City or Dallas or New Orleans or wherever, then you know there's a downtown part and then at a certain point you're in the suburbs, usually about as far as the local commute train or something else can go out several miles out. In the bay area the local commute train goes probably twenty miles out and goes pretty far out, and so there's tons of people who live in quote Unquote Bay area. So wherever you live, you've got a central city and then you've got people that live in the outskirts. You know, it's basically done. To explain it. So of all of my people that have grown up with I'm the only one that ventured to the city early in life, maybe because I had no place else to go, but I ended up coming out there and I like it and I've...

...worked my way up to the point now where I have a place to stay and I have a guest from and I have, you know, crazy stories to watch and experience. I would expect. Well, maybe this is the problem. Maybe I've heard that expectations are the Human Achilles heel. It's a that that's kind of a weird thing. Don't expect anything and you'll feel much better. That's too Buddhist for me. Man, I have expectations of people and in the case of my friends, it happened last year when one of my best friends, I would call him like my brother, he hadn't been talking to me for like a year and a half. I'm like, dude, he wasn't like avoiding he was kind of avoiding me, but not like we didn't have a fight or anything. So just like dude, what the fuck? And he apparently you just hooked up with the chick and getting all up into her head and everything right. So they come all the way from the suburbs right down town to the city, right, but in fact there's a park, golden gate park, and I just happened to be riding my bike up through the park and who the fuck is over by the bandstand? There's my buddy and like, dude, what the fuck? You come all the way out here and you don't call me? You don't like he's with his girlfriend, by the way. You didn't call, didn't let me know, didn't text nothing. So he was going to blow in and out of town without including me anything. Now I know you're thinking they're is dozens of reasons why he probably did not call you. For one, you're fucking maniac. Why would you want a triple date with the maniac? I got you, I feel it doesn't matter. It still hurts my feelings. And then it happened again. Another guy, the only like. There's like three dudes who are like close enough to be my brothers. Another one, the second one, did the same thing a couple weeks ago. Came out here, took the train right in, right down the street from my place, didn't call me, didn't text me, didn't do shit, didn't say hi, nothing. So again, tons of reasons, I'm sure, but again again,...

I don't care if fucking hurts my feelings. So that's that's how hyper sensitive I am to abandonment now. All right, so I think I'm starting to sound like a maniac now, so I'm going to cut it off. Well, I can still breathe. Take it down a notch. Yeah, I really like I said in the beginning, I really appreciate you. I'm actually listening and downloading. One day I will connect better the downloads with the twitter audience. So I guess what I'm saying. If you listen to this, maybe try out twitter. Go check out twitter. Go to twitter, go to bipolar style, find it there and have a conversation with us. There's a really strong mental health support group there. In fact, pick your pick your mental illness, whatever you got, there's a support group for it on twitter. Really robust. Highly recommend that. If you are bipolar, that it is, if you have depression mixed with a mania, please come over to bipolar PARTYCOM and hang out with us. They're again it's a private it's not anonymous, but it's private. We don't share what we talked about outside of the group. It's way better than twitter for sharing, you know, getting bigger things off of your chests and feeling a sense of support. Oh and, dude, subscribe, like go to spotify or itunes or whatever and somewhere on the little interface is a button that says subscribe. Then you'll get notified when I put up podcast episodes. Some thinking about doing a more frequently, like maybe ten minute ones every day, something, I don't know. Let me know what you think, like the daily mania or some shit like that. Or just get up and talk and start a conversation about stuff, mostly about mental health, sometimes about politics, sometimes about pop culture, a lot of times about bipolar. Have you had enough? Well, why didn't you take off your earphones yet? Oh, I know you wanted to hear your staff do the outro. All right. Well, here it is.

Style on it. Cheese as five following on twitter. Joy, excuse me,.

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