Toxic positivity

What is toxic positivity? Well its this

Its something I experience a lot from others but also I do it myself. I invalidate my own feelings, mainly because I get sick to death of feeling so shit all the time, I just try and fake it till I make it, but that’s such a bad thing. As it doesn’t acknowledge or validate your situation and feelings and without that validation then how you feel will often last longer as your not being true to yourself.

It’s also something that I have really noticed recently in the spiritual/new age community and its not cool. Over the last few months I’ve felt increasingly like I don’t belong in the spiritual community because I’m not as knowledgeable, I’m not spiritual enough, I’m too depressed etc the list goes on. No matter what religion/community you belong too, it shouldn’t make you feel like an outsider. It should be a place of love and unity but its not and I’ve found that it’s just full of fakes, who say one thing but who’s actions are the complete opposite of what they speak and I’m not ok with that. That’s not the type of people I want to be associated with, so I decided to leave every facebook page and group I belonged to and remove most people from that community off my facebook.

I was sick of seeing the streams and streams and positive shit, I mean I love my quotes and stuff but it got to the point where seeing all this stuff was making me feel more worthless then I already do because everyone in these groups makes living life and being happy seem so fucking simple, its like they all know this secret to a happy life but aren’t allowed to tell me, I’ve just got to put up with seeing the fake stuff, oh just meditate and you’ll be happy, connect to your higher self and you’ll have all these special gifts… and yeah it all feels so unobtainable to someone like me, who’s on my own and I don’t have anyone to guide me or teach me.

It was just all getting to be really overwhelming and then its like all of a sudden I saw just how self centred and fake everyone is because life isn’t fucking perfect no matter how spiritual you are because your still here living the human experience. I often feel that there’s a sense of superiority within the community, because they have all these gifts and whatever that they are better then everyone.

This is all just how I feel and it could well be a reflection of how I’m feeling in general right now, but no one’s noticed I’ve left or removed them of my facebook, so kinda makes my point really. Community is meant to care for everyone not some.

I’ve also had a lot of toxic positivity from friends who will over generalise whatever I say by saying oh well everyone is struggling right now, everyone is in the same situation. Which while yes its true, that doesn’t make me feel good and I struggle to open up to people and be vulnerable and tell people the truth about how I feel. I very rarely express how I really feel because I don’t easily trust people’s words, I often don’t feel safe enough to be honest and the times I have been honest I either get one of 2 reactions. I either get invalidated and they’ll talk in general or the person will over react and in doing that then makes it about them. So either way I often left feeling invalidated, so my automatic response is usually I’m good thanks as it doesn’t invite any more questions. Also I find people want to fix it for you, they listen to reply, they listen to help and that’s not always helpful either. Being heard by someone can make you feel 10 times better then any advice as often all I want it be heard, acknowledged and validated and sometimes that’s all anyone needs.

I know I am a rescuer type personality and its something I have become very aware of over the last few years and its really hard walking away from people but constantly rescuing something is draining. But its so hard not to rescue people, not go above and beyond to help people just to make myself feel better, to make myself feel useful and worthy. But I can’t rescue the world when I can barely rescue myself.

I’m not completely sworn off spirituality despite the situation I find myself in, I still have my spiritual beliefs and I will still be open to learning more. I just don’t want to be stuck in a box or community, I want to explore what’s out there. I will always try to be one with earth and the universe.

Maybe this post has helped you recognise toxic positivity, whether that’s because you’ve experienced it or are guilty of it. Which I think we all are to a degree, non of us are perfect.

Keep being authentic

Peace out

Zak

Self care during self QUARANTINE

I suffer with mental health issues, mainly depression and anxiety. But also struggle with disassociation and gender dysphoria. As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, I started myself back on trazadone to get through this tough, uncertain times. I’ve been back on it for around 5 days now and I’m already feeling a little better then I was feeling.

I know what its like to be socially isolated and it freaking sucks! It’s super hard! Even though I can be shy and a bit of an introvert, I do love being with other people. But as I am vulnerable to getting the covid19 I am staying away from people, ie not having people over and stuff. So I’ve been thinking of ways that I can stay connected with people, so the social isolation doesn’t hit me so hard and I can stay sane and mentally well.

One thing that has helped so far is that I’ve been reaching out to others who I know are in the same situation as myself and making sure they’re doing good. I find it hard to reach out to others when I need help, but this is a unique situation, we’re all kinda feeling the same anxieties and uncertainties, so I don’t need to express explicitly that I need help or support, as we’re all in the same boat right now. Which is making it much easier for me to reach out, as I feel like I’m helping others instead of asking for help/support which I’m not keen on doing.

I’ve offered people video calls/voice calls and messaging, to ease the social isolation and I’ve had a few video calls and voice calls with a few different people already and its been an absolute blast. Talking with my friends has definitely helped! Video calls makes it feel like I’ve socialised and got that essential interaction with people that we all crave. It makes the days feel less lonely and isolated.

I know I am often viewed as someone who is strong and capable, as I rarely let myself be truly vulnerable in front of people. So I feel like sometimes people don’t check in on me, as I’m seen as someone who can look after themselves quite happily. Whilst yes I am more then capable of looking after myself but I have my struggles. I’m trying my best to keep reaching out and talking to people. So I can feel connected with others and feel like I’m making a difference to others.

At times like this it’s important to remember no matter how alone we may feel, we are not alone! There is a community out there to help get you through this, you just have to be brave and reach out.

I’ve also been trying to keep some sort of routine, although its super flexible, I’ve just been trying to keep doing the things that for me are non negotiable for example I have to make sure I take my meds in the morning and evening, doing my sinus rinse morning and evening, do the housework every other day, walk the dogs twice a day, eat 2 meals a day. I’ve kinda given up on my sleep routine as I’m more awake in the evening hours anyway. I’m still making sure I get enough sleep, whether that’s napping in the day or waking up late.

I try and split my day up into units of time so the day doesn’t feel so overwhelming. I also try and remember that I don’t need to fill every second with an activity, its totally ok to just sit and be.

I roughly know how much time certain things will take me to do, like doing the housework takes about 30-40 mins, having a shower and getting dressed takes between 10 and 20 mins depending on how long I’m sitting in the shower for. So I know that when I decide to wake up and start my day how long it takes for me to get ready for the day and that’s like the first unit of the day and then depending on how I feel and what the weather is like helps me decide on what to do with the dogs, either a long walk or a short run around across the road. That’s another unit of time take up and you get the idea, cutting the day into more manageable chunks without feeling so overwhelmed about having to fill a whole day.

I wrote a list of things I can do on my own whilst were all on lockdown, so I’ll share with you what I wrote down

Things to do during self isolation –

Check in with myself daily

Video call friends

Reach out on social media

Write and blog

Try and read (I have adhd so I struggle to concentrate sometimes)

Listen to podcasts and audiobooks

Colour/draw/create something

Teach Scrappy new tricks

Play video games

Teach myself to play solitaire with playing cards

Nextflix/Amazon/DVD’s

Spring clean the flat

Walk the dogs

Watch YouTube videos

Create a cosy fort/nest

Yoga

Make bread, cakes, biscuits, meals

Nap

Be silly

I hope you’re all coping as well as you can during these uncertain times. We need to come together as one, show each other the kindness, the compassion and the unconditional love that I know we are all capable of.

If there’s anything you want me to write about/comment on please let me know and I shall try my best. Please like, share, comment and follow my blog

Peace out

Zak

Counselling sessions

After 14 sessions, 14 hours I have finished my counselling sessions, with the lovely Scania Price.

I’m glad I was encouraged to find a private counsellor, I’m so pleased I found Scania as I got a lot out of my 14 sessions. It was different from what I have experienced before and its exactly what I needed at this time and I will definitely go back to her if I need to (probably will need too at some point) I have totally accepted now that its cool to need extra help, at whatever age, for whatever issue. Life is hard and sometimes I just find it so exhausting and so overwhelming, I just can’t do it on my own, I need a safe place to talk stuff through and work through stuff.

Before I started counselling, I had gotten myself to a certain point but there was still stuff I needed to untangle and I felt a bit stuck. I couldn’t move myself forward and I didn’t really have many people to sit and talk stuff through with and I struggle to talk about really deep personal stuff with people, as I struggle to trust others fully to reveal the true me. It takes someone special to get me to open up. I am the master of holding back and only saying snippets of things and not really digging much deeper then what I am willing to share.

I think that’s what’s hindered me in many ways, I think a lot of time I resist how I feel, I don’t just feel things, I fight it. I’m not truthful and honest with myself let alone other people. I struggle to always connect with myself, so often don’t check in with myself and how I’m feeling. But I am trying my best to check in with how I feel, speak my truth, say how I feel. I know I need to start trusting people, I need to try and accept that getting hurt is apart of being human and apart of having friends and family. I think I really avoid getting hurt, so I just withdraw from everything, but by trying to avoid the bad I’m also not letting the good in.

Counselling helped me untangle myself from a previous relationship that I was still getting over and untangle myself from friendships I was no longer in and these things were the main things I was really struggling with. I’d lost myself over the years in these friendships, I’d been chipped away at, I had no boundaries with people, I let people walk over me, I felt weak, I felt silenced, I felt used, I felt lonely, I felt unlovable.. the list goes on. I have started creating boundaries, I know what I will and wont tolerate, I feel stronger, I know I have a voice that I need to use more often. I feel less lonely, I just feel better. I know where I stand.

I feel like in my sessions I was able to be raw and honest and dig deeper then I’ve done before. I feel like I understand myself a bit better, I know I’m still in the process of rediscovering myself but that’s cool.

Even though I’m still feeling a little depressed although its not everyday, it comes in waves. Some days it will be a big wave and it will swipe me off my feet, but other days its a small wave and I’m still standing. I just think that’s the nature of having chronic depression and a chronic illness, as they both have a knock on effect on one another. I am in a much better place then I was in November.

It’s been 2 weeks since my last counselling session and it does feel a bit weird, it has been a bit overwhelming. I liked the routine of having a set time to get all the stuff out I needed too. I’ve been a bit all over the place, but I think I had a bit of the birthday blues, which threw me off. I’m just starting to get myself back together lol.

If anyone is thinking about seeking help, whether that be through the NHS, or privately please do it. Talking does help, no matter how old you are, what the problem is. If you’re feeling shitty, feeling suck and need a little help there is absolutely no shame in seeking what you need. It does not make you weak or less then. It makes you stronger because you are getting your needs met, you are looking after yourself.

I’m feeling tired right now and struggling to remember stuff and concentrate so this feels like its really disconnected and disjointed as I write this. I think its all I have to say, I can’t express enough about how much this round of counselling has helped me. I’m still dealing with stuff but who isn’t, that’s life right.

I was going to write another blog, but I need to sleep and come back tomorrow.

Peace out

Zak

A day in the life of a Trans guy – 7 weeks post op Top Surgery

These past 7 weeks have gone so quickly, my head and emotions still haven’t quite caught up with everything yet, I’m just trying to take it easy and be kind to myself.

The one thing no one tells you about post top surgery is that you no longer have two bags of fat on your chest keeping you warm! I’ve been going out in what I would normally wear for certain temperatures and I’ve been really cold, that’s going to take a while getting used too.

Also when getting dressed, I feel like I’m missing something because I no longer have to wear a binder/bra under my tops, so that feels pretty weird, feel kinda naked lol!

But I am loving the fact that my clothes all fit better and I don’t feel so stressed out while getting dressed because nothing looks or feels right. Now clothes sit properly and feel good, I look forward to getting dressed now, rather then it being a stressful event.

I went and had a massage on Monday, as after wearing that compression binder for nearly 6 weeks my back was so tense and stiff, I knew I needed a massage to help loosen my body up again. Plus a little self care goes a long way. It was so good! my shoulders were so knotty and I was so tense in so many places, I felt great afterwards, it was very much needed. I decided to have one once a month, as I think it will do me good in many ways.

I’ve spent a lot of time not being connected to my body and I still don’t feel quite connected with myself, so I think having a regular massage will help me feel more connected to my body and myself in general.

Now I’ve had surgery, I feel like I want to look after myself and my body better, although it all feels a bit overwhelming right now, so I’m just starting slowly. I’m still getting pretty exhausted most days, so its going to take a while to build myself back up. I think starting with having a monthly massage, will help set me on the right road.

7 Weeks Post op Top Surgery

I bought some Bio oil today to put on my scars and help heal these scars up. My body sometimes over heals and my scars turn out bumpy.

That’s all for now,

Peace out

Zak

Disconnected

Today’s been weird, this morning I was organised, got shit done, felt good. By sort of 13:30pm I was just done for the day .

I wanted to sleep because I was tired but I couldn’t settle. So just spent most of the afternoon zoned out, completely disconnected. I just feel like a zombie, it’s hard to get out of that feeling too.

I just feel nothing but everything at once. It’s so overwhelming.

Still after all these years I still feel so guilty about not being productive enough, or well just not being enough full stop.

It doesn’t help that it’s a full moon this weekend and I’m due my T shot Monday, they are all added factors.

Having a hard time focusing, concentrating and just getting thoughts in order. Everything feels disorganised. I feel out of place.

Not sure if it’s depression or not… I dunno. I don’t really know how to fix it either I’m not sure what’s going to help.

Peace out

Zak

A day in the life of a trans guy – I just want to be a real boy 😔

I feel like I’m stuck in limbo, everything feels suspended in space. Just hanging around in this skin that doesn’t feel like my own.

This body doesn’t feel like it’s mine, it’s just doesn’t fit.

I know I’m on the journey to change all that, I’m 11 months on testosterone now. But the changes seem slow and small.

Maybe I’m not looking at the bigger picture and only focusing on the things that testosterone alone can’t change.

I just feel so frustrated, I just want to feel comfortable in my skin.

I know I need to accept where I am in my journey and I know I need to appreciate how far I’ve come. But it’s hard to do when things don’t feel right and the mismatch between brain and body is all messed up.

The conflict between brain and body, feels like a never ending battle. I just want to feel happy and comfortable.

This never ending heat isn’t helping, when it’s cold I can wear jeans, t-shirt and a hoodie, I feel comfortable but in this heat I’m having to wear shorts all the time and a vest top and chest binder which makes me feel really vulnerable and exposed all the time.

I need to take some time where I’m just at home a few days a week where I feel a bit more comfortable and I can just be without feeling judged and stared at. It will maybe help me deal with the gender dysphoria and then when I do go out I’ll feel less drained and stressed out and I can actually enjoy my time outside with my favourite people.

I just want to feel happy without the stress of the dysphoria. I don’t like feeling sad and upset but it’s not entirely in my control.

I hate feeling disconnected and disassociated, because I feel stuck inside my head and I can’t get out. I can’t communicate properly, I can’t get anything out of my head. I feel so much and I need to get it out but I just can’t. It feels so overwhelming. It’s so frustrating and I know it’s difficult for those around me.

I just want to feel like me, I want to feel at peace, I want to feel happy.

Acceptance is the key, I’m still a work in progress. I’m trying to accept myself as I am, I’m trying to like myself as I am.

I’m trying really hard, some days I win some days I don’t. But I won’t stop trying, I can promise that.

Peace out

Zak

Transition update – Week 35 on T

This week has been full of ups and downs but I’ve made some huge steps forward, which feels so awesome! I’m so proud of myself.

I’ll get the non transition stuff out of the way first. Its been a pretty hard week, I’ve had so much stuff to sort out and its been really difficult and overwhelming. Yesterday I wrote out a list of everything I needed to do and just went through it bit by bit sorting through everything. I felt so much better for it, I’ve still got a few things to do but I’ve made a good start. Things are slowly coming together, I’m still in the middle of sorting out my benefits and money is still really tight but hey I’m still here, still fighting.

Transition stuff has been pretty exciting this week and I’m really proud of myself. Last week it was quite hot for a couple of days, usually it makes me really anxious and makes me gender dysphoria really bad. But on this particular day I was feeling pretty good and confident so I wore my shorts out, which is the first time since starting testosterone. I had my hairy legs on show and I did feel a bit anxious while I was out but it wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. The next day I went out for the day with friends and we went to the beach, again I wore my shorts but I was feeling a bit self conscious about my chest so I decided to try on my chest binder I bought a year or so ago. Its a high impact sports bra, but since I bought it I’ve lost weight, so it fits much better. After yesterday I was feeling really good and I decided to go out and wear my binder all day. It felt really comfortable and I felt less self conscious. I just felt good, I felt more like myself. I felt really confident, which is really weird for me. So yes big steps and I’m so proud of myself. Pics below are of my hairy legs in shorts and me in my binder.

I got my T shot tomorrow, I’m looking forward to that. Over all just feeling good, despite all the stuff I’ve got going on.

Week 35 on T

^ This weeks picture

^ This weeks video

That’s all for this week!

Peace out

Zak

Transition update – Week 33 on T

Another week on testosterone, its been such a long crazy week but its been s good one.

I’ve struggled to get through money wise, but I’ve been selling stuff. That’s slowed down now and I don’t have much left but I have food so hopefully be ok. This is a whole other issue… I’ll maybe write about it in a separate blog.

Despite having little money I had my haircut today as its been driving me insane. But I feel so much better after my haircut, feeling fresh! When I got home after my haircut, I sorted out my wild eyebrows, I swear testosterone has made them much thicker then before, so am always having to pluck and tame them. As I was looking in the mirror, I was looking at the fluff on my chin and moustache and the hair on my chin was looking really messy. I decided that I was going to have my first shave and so I just went and did it without thinking about it too much. It all went fine, I didn’t even cut myself which is always a bonus. Feels like a big milestone, it feels really good, I feel really good. It makes it all the more real I suppose.

I feel a bit sad that my dad wasn’t there to guide me through or to talk too about all this manly stuff. But I know he’s always with me. I know he’s proud of me and how far I’ve come.

I started this blog this afternoon…its now gone 10 pm and I’m only just getting around to finish it. This day has just flown by and I don’t feel like I’ve had the time to do anything. Or I’ve just got too many things to do and not enough time. Feels a bit overwhelming at the moment, haven’t really had much chance to have some quiet time and just sit.

Also I’m so tired, feeling a bit unemotional and a bit disconnected. I haven’t slept very well the last few nights as I’ve had a lot on my mind and my legs have been really achy at night.

I just need a good nights sleep and my inner child is screaming out to be looked after, he’s tired and cranky. I’ve been neglecting him and myself a little bit.

I realise its not so much ‘trans’ stuff in this blog but being trans and going through this transition is only a small part of my life. There is so much more to my life and me then this transition.

That’s enough from me, I need to start winding down for the night.

 

Week 33 on T.JPG

^ This weeks picture

^ This weeks video

Peace out

Zak

Transition update – Week 32 on T

Today would have been T shot day but the docs didn’t have any appointments, so I’m having it done bright and early Thursday morning lol, 8:30am! Urgh, that’s still the middle of the night!! This is why I wanted to do it myself, so I didn’t have to mess around with apps and I can do it on the exact day its due. Even though I know it can be done 5 days before or 7 days after its due, it still gives me anxiety that its not being done on the exact day its due! But I’m weird like that, silly things give me big anxiety. I suppose its about control, its something I need to let go of a bit more and not let little things stress me out so much. A lot of it is because I often don’t feel like I have any power or control, so little things cause big anxiety. Man I sound like a lil weirdo but whatever.

My weeks been busy but its been really good. I’ve finally got rid of my chest infection, it only took just over 3 weeks and I’ve finished my steroids too, which is a relief! Although its been messing up my mood a bit, been feeling a bit emotional today but I think that was a mixture of things. I feel fine now, I had a nice shower and did some EFT (emotional freedom technique) on myself and it made me feel a lot better, much calmer and less emotional then I was, which is always a good thing. I know there’s a calmness inside, I just don’t always feel it. So I’m going to try and tap out all the intense negative emotions as and when they come, hopefully it will help me regain some control and things wont get so intense and overwhelming.

For some reason this week I am super spotty on my chest, neck and back, although I’m pretty spotty in those areas already but these last couple of days, loads of extra bloody spots have popped up lol! Its sooo hard not to squeeze all the ones I can reach, gross I know lol. Some of them are quite sore but I can’t reach them to put any cream or anything on them. Not sure what its all about lol, I’m hoping they calm down as like I said some are really sore, I’ve got a few on my scalp as well, they are a bit itchy and sore too.

My voice is slowly getting there, I’ve noticed today its a bit deeper which is cool, I said something earlier and I was like woah! who said that!! made me chuckle to myself. My T levels are nearly right I think, I speak to my GP Thursday about my levels as my results from the last bloods said they were borderline, not sure what that means, so I’m assuming it means that they aren’t quite high enough. So they may need to tweak the frequency of the T shot again.

My gender dysphoria and disassociation has been mostly ok this week, I’ve been feeling quite relaxed and calm where my body is concerned. But I’ve spent this week looking after myself and my needs, rather then everything else that isn’t really important. Which just proves how much self care is essential to my well-being, its something I struggle to do regularly. It is so noticeable when I stop basic self care, everything just goes off the wall and unmanageable. I’ve been taking a lot of really hot showers and it really helps with the disassociation and I can take 15-20 mins to just be totally in the moment, breathe and relax. It really works for me at the moment, it may not always work and may not work for others but at the moment its working, which is the main thing.

Well its gone midnight now and I better get to bed and I have my friends kids over again tonight and I’ll probably be up around 8:30 am, my mind is pretty awake so I need to wind down a bit before I can go to sleep

 

 

Week 32 on T.JPG

^ This weeks picture

^ This weeks video

Peace out

Zak

Transition update – Week 31 on T

Another week on testosterone and its been a crazy week, its been up, down and all over the place. Its been hard to keep a track of how I feel, what’s going on. It feels like a whirlwind of emotions, highs and lows and just intense overwhelming feelings.

All been triggered my external stuff, but I think the testosterone has lowered my ability to deal with anger. Usually I’m quite placid and it takes me a lot to get outwardly angry, like screaming, shouting and throwing shit angry. But the last few months, I can’t control it, I can go from calm to intense anger in seconds… and I don’t like it, I don’t like feeling that angry and out of control. Yesterday though I tried some EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique) on myself yesterday and it really helped me to bring the intensity of the anger down. It didn’t make it go away, I probably could have kept on doing it until my anger was right down but it brought me back down which is what I needed. Its something I intend on trying more and more to help me manage my emotions a bit better.

I still haven’t had the results of my testosterone levels, so may ring the docs tomorrow to find out whats going on. On my docs notes it just says borderline, make an app with the doctor, I just looked at my online notes, as it was in my head, so yes that’s a job for tomorrow.

I haven’t noticed any physical changes but I expect that’s because my T levels are still lower then they should be and from what it says on my docs notes that’s looking more likely. That’s cool and easily fixable by increasing the frequency of the testosterone shots.

Week 31 on T

^ This weeks picture

^ This weeks video

Well its nearly midnight and I still got a few bits to do before I can go to bed, so that’s its for tonight.

Peace out

Zak