book review damaged by cathy glass

recently i finished a great book by UK foster carer cathy glass. it was called damaged. damaged is jody’s story. jody came to cathy having gone through 5 placements in four months. cathy was her last hope, if cathy wasnt able to look after her, she would have had to go into residential. jody was 8 years old when she came into care. she’d been on the at risk register since birth, as were her half brother ben and half sister chelsea. from the start she displayed very disturbed behaviours. she would throw severe tantrums, kick, bite, punch herself and others, it was also felt that she had mild to moderate learning difficulties. she was angry, and defiant. she struggled at school and was only at the learning level of a preschooler. as i mentioned cathy was her last hope. cathy struggled with her from the get go. but she was determined to do all she could so that jody wouldnt have to go to a residential secure unit. she tried to give jody some sort of a normal family life. however jody was very rude, and did not get along with cathys own 3 children paula, adrian and lucy. she also started displaying sexualised behaviour early on. she would masturbate in public, and saw nothing wrong with that. she would also make sexual advances towards adrian who was 17. eventually after a few months living with cathy, jody started to make disclosures. it was during one incident where jody had tried to have sex with a doll, that she disclosed to cathy that her dad used to have sex with her in her bedroom and in the car. then she told cathy that other men did the same thing. cathy was horrified. jody then went on to say that her mother knew and hadnt done anything to stop it. the police were informed and jody had to go through a forensic medical examination. she also had an interview with some child protection officers but she clammed up and refused to divulge anything. it was decided that the file would remain open in case some time down the road jody was ready to open up and talk about what happened. cathy felt outraged knowing that her perpetrators would not be prosecuted. there was however little she could do. she just kept trying to show jody what a normal family life was, including her in family activities, engaging with her. jody would have constant nightmares and flashbacks and hallucinations and she was eventually also diagnosed with dissociative identity disorder. she had 3 alters, reg, amy and an adult unnamed alter. when reg took over jody would appear very masculine and strong and very angry. amy was a 2 year old and when she took over jody would suck her thumb and talk babyish. cathy struggled on as best as she could. however jodys symptoms just kept intensifying. eventually after a year it was felt that jody would have no hope in a family environment and it was felt that her best option was a theraputic residential community. she was so damaged and was unable to attach to anyone. security, love patience and firm boundaries hadnt reached her. after being assessed by a psychologist the residential unit high oaks was chosen. slowly jody was introduced to the unit and eventually she moved there permanently. cathy says in her book that jody was the most disturbed child she had ever looked after in all of her years of fostering. her story is unforgettable. it is a powerful read and i highly recommend other foster parents, social workers, survivors of trauma, or anyone interested in true life memoirs reads it. i will warn though there are graphic descriptions of different types of abuse discussed in the book including child porn, sexual abuse, emotional abuse etc. this was my second time to read the book. as usual cathy has done a great job of telling jody’s story and tells it with honesty, candor and love.

psychiatrist apt and OT apt today

so this morning i saw mark first and then dr. barry. both apts went really great. mark and i talked about both volunteering and also applying for a part time job. i told him i’d like to volunteer a few hours a week even if i also work a part time job. i said i’d like to maybe work with animals, but then mark said i’d probably need a person to help me if i worked with horses or other animals, its an uncontrolled environment and he said that it might be hard to get in, most organisations are reluctant to take blind people, also he told me they were also reluctant to take people with just mental illness and no other disability. i said if i got more PA hours I could get one of my PAS to go with me so we might still consider it as an option. I had tried to approach our guide dog school to ask about volunteering with the dogs like in the kennels grooming them and playing with them and feeding them etc. but they never responded to me which made me mad. they only seem to contact me if its about fundraising for them. mark told me today that maybe i could volunteer at the basement club, since i am already on the bord of directors of the organisation shine that runs that drop in centre. so i said that was a good idea and i’d ring the co-ordinator and ask her about volunteering. maybe i can facilitate some groups, or do some talks on mental illness, or something. its worth a try.
the apt with dr. barry was also really good. i am starting naltrexone next week. dr. barry did some research and said some studies have been done with the drug and that its been shown to help people with dissociation. she’s going to start me on 25 mg and increase it to 50 2 weeks later. i need to get my liver function checked first though before going on it. i told her i wasnt sleeping and she encouraged me to take the haldol when things are bad. she said there is no point in having it if i dont take it. i suppose i agree. she also encouraged me to stay with my mom at the weekend and use her for support. but i’m not sure i’ll do that.
she referred me to the weekend team again this weekend. hopefully someone who knows me will be on duty. i suppose its good that they are there and available for support.

appointments this morning

its almost 4 AM and I am still awake. I really have to talk to dr. barry about my sleep. something needs to be done as I am getting very little sleep. i cant go on like this.
I see dr. barry this morning so I hopefully will be able to talk to her then about things, things like my mood, suicidal thoughts, sleep issues, etc. I also want to talk to her about my emotions, I am finding it really hard to feel, it scares me I dont want to go there, to feel my feelings.
I also see Mark my OT this morning. We need to talk about the best way to go forward in regards to applying for part time jobs. Hoping he has done some research and has some ideas. I’m anxious about possibly starting work, but part of me really wants to do this too. I am focused, it will give me purpose and meaning.
I also get my xeplion injection this morning. I can tell I am due for it. We started hallucinating again earlier this week. Hopefully when we get the xeplion the hallucinations will stop.
I need some respite from all the internal conflict and inner turmoil going on I just need to feel some peace.

relationship issues

so on monday i spent almost my entire therapy session with eileen talking about my relationship. my partner lives in illinois. we have been going out since 2006. its hard to do a long distance relationship at the best of times. but last year my partner moved in to a residential nursing home for psychiatric patients. she’s been there since last June. so we only get to talk infrequently and when we do there is no privacy because she has to use the residents phone. i am very frustrated. she is multiple like i am and i knew a lot of her insiders. i miss all of them but most of all i miss our daily contact, i miss our texting and skyping and emails. i miss having someone who i could tell absolutely anything to. i am finding it incredibly hard and grieving for what I have lost. i’m still her partner but its just things have changed. and it makes me sad. i also feel a little angry because she is in that place and there is no sign of her moving out or going back home to live with her mom. and well i wish i could do something. i have made huge efforts over the past year to keep in touch with her I’ve even sent her care packages as well just to cheer her up. i talked to her tonight and she seemed in good spirits. i was able to voice some of my frustration to her and she seemed to understand. part of me feels like i have a responsibility to her, because she doesnt have much contact with her mom and local friend, and only one other person calls her besides me. she must be lonely because i know if i was in her position i would be super lonely. its just so hard to watch her struggle and get super triggered. she told me tonight she has a bunch of new insiders from being triggered by things that go on in this place. i hope some time soon she can move out or go home. i pray it happens soon.

Private emails are always welcome, you can reach me by emailing me at
irishandblind1980

all over the place

i am all over the place tonight. i feel pulled in so many directions. my emotions are so overwhelming, everything feels huge and insurmountable.
my sleep is still all over the place. i slept earlier this afternoon and evening so now i cant. its past midnight here and i just made some coffee and put the radio on for company. it will hopefully drown out the thoughts in my head that i am having of cutting and overdosing.
i really hate nights like this. i have a busy day tomorrow. in the morning my public health nurse is calling to check on my absesses. They have gotten a lot better so I am glad about that.
then in the afternoon we have therapy. it will be interesting to see how therapy goes. we need to talk about the anxiety we are dealing with about getting a part time job. we are hoping to do that soon but there is a lot of internal conflict in the system about it.
our home help will also be here tomorrow afternoon to help us cook dinner. mom and my sister came over this afternoon with our dinner which was nice. usually i’m at our parents on sundays but this weekend i stayed home. it was nice to just get dinner brought to us. mom also cut the grass and cleaned up the dog poop in the yard while she was here.
the same girl from the weekend mental health team called me today too. she only stayed on the phone for a couple of minutes, asking me the same few questions that she asked me on saturday. the call was pretty useless which were about my sleep, suicidal thoughts, meds etc. i plan on telling dr. barry that i didnt find her helpful. it really depends on who is on duty as to whether the staff are helpful when they call or not. i mostly was irritated by her and so didnt find the check ins helpful at all which really sucks as i needed them badly this weekend.

i make this. sharin the happiness

it me darina and I make this video I not sure it come out good but I post it nayway I do it from ar laptop here I will sing a song from annie becuz it makes me happy and I like to sing and I thot it will make us happy so here goes 🙂

darina I six

Dog farts, and other randomness on a saturday night

so i got busy. first i splurged on chips and ice cream. i ate and watched tv, then i decided to take the advice of a blog commenter and put on music. so i put on cake by the ocean and rocked out to that. and now i’m dealing with a farting dog! he’s stinking me out of my bedroom! he wants to let me know he’s there! Thank you mr. Nitro, for that awful smell, lol. First he was being sick and I managed to let him out just in time for him to puke, luckily he didnt get any of it in the house, because the last thing I want to do is clean up dog vomit! I’m going to continue staying positive, cuddle nitro, and wait for my friend sarah to be ready to face time me. And maybe I’ll even make a cuppa as well.