Photo: Brandon Herrera

Mental Illness in St Andrews

Anonymous describes the reality of living with voices in one’s head.

TW: Self-harm


I am not religious, but for a brief period when I was around fifteen or sixteen, I was so certain that I’d spend entire nights wondering what hell was like. This certainty came from the fact that I, fairly frequently, thought I could hear His voice in my head.

Now, about five years later, I know the voices in my head are not the product of heaven but of depression, anxiety and paranoia, and I’m more likely to respond to them with exhausted frustration than religious dread. But in many ways they run my life as much as they did when I thought they had the power to send me to Hell.

This doesn’t mean I do everything the voices tell me, you understand. If I did that, then I’d be either in a jail or a graveyard rather than a room in St Andrews. But the desire not to listen to them seeps into more or less everything I do. If I study too intensely and relax too little, it’s because that gives me an excuse not to listen when the whispers start. If I take on too much extracurricular stuff, it’s because I can use all the exhausting projects these hobbies afford me to tire out the invasive creatures in my brain so they don’t have the energy to start smashing the place up. If I randomly message my friends in the middle of the night, it’s because I’m desperate to talk to someone who isn’t telling me to hurt myself.

And that’s just the stuff that happens when I don’t listen to my voices. When I do.. .Well, there’s a reason why I’m making this article anonymous.

Again, most of the stuff I end up doing isn’t that dramatic. I’ve cut myself with a razor a couple of times, and on one memorable occasion snatched up a fag butt someone had dropped outside the Union and absent-mindedly stubbed it out on my skin, but usually the bad stuff is more subtle. I avoid spending money, to the point of scrounging meals out of bins. I apologise, randomly, profusely and unnecessarily for more or less everything I do. I don’t sleep, shower, change my clothes, pay any attention to health or hygiene. I take random walks out to West Sands at 4 am and just stand there, fantasising about who would come to my funeral.

Am I proud of this behaviour? Of course not. I’m blanching a little as I write it. But sometimes my mind stops working and I do weird things. And I know that sounds like the weakest of weak excuses, but it’s the only way I can describe it.

There’s an upside to all of this, though. St Andrews is possibly the best place there is to be my particular brand of crazy. I’m not just talking about Student Services, though they are helpful. The voices find it easiest to get to me when my mind’s not occupied by anything else, and that’s not an easy situation to find yourself in in St Andrews. Sure, overwork-as-therapy probably isn’t healthy and I probably shouldn’t be doing it, but if it helps me shut up my uninvited guests then I’ll be forever grateful to this place for letting that happen.

And if it doesn’t? Well, I’m sure The Stand will provide excellent reportage on whatever hideous thing I end up doing.

Comments

comments

57 thoughts on “Mental Illness in St Andrews

  1. Pingback: coach valorant
  2. Pingback: 트루모아
  3. Have you ever heard of second life (sl for short). It is essentially a video game where you can do anything you want. sl is literally my second life (pun intended lol). If you would like to see more you can see these second life authors and blogs

  4. Pingback: pinkmaiden
  5. Have you ever heard of second life (sl for short). It is essentially a video game where you can do anything you want. SL is literally my second life (pun intended lol). If you want to see more you can see these Second Life articles and blogs

  6. Do you have a spam problem on this website; I also am a blogger, and I was wanting to know your situation; many of us have created some nice practices and we are looking to trade techniques with others, why not shoot me an e-mail if interested.|

  7. Aw, this was a very good post. Finding the time and actual effort to make a superb article… but what can I say… I procrastinate a whole lot and don’t manage to get anything done.|

  8. When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and now each time a comment is added I get four e-mails with the same comment. Is there any way you can remove me from that service? Bless you!

  9. Magnificent beat ! I wish to apprentice while you amend your website, how could i subscribe for a blog web site? The account helped me a acceptable deal. I had been a little bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered bright clear idea|

  10. Today, I went to the beachfront with my kids. I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She put the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!|

  11. We’re a gaggle of volunteers and starting a brand new scheme in our community. Your site provided us with helpful info to work on. You have done an impressive activity and our whole group will likely be thankful to you.|

  12. You can definitely see your expertise in the article you write. The sector hopes for even more passionate writers like you who are not afraid to mention how they believe. All the time go after your heart.|

  13. I know this if off topic but I’m looking into starting my own weblog and was wondering what all is required to get set up? I’m assuming having a blog like yours would cost a pretty penny? I’m not very web savvy so I’m not 100 sure. Any recommendations or advice would be greatly appreciated. Kudos|

  14. Hmm it appears like your blog ate my first comment (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I wrote and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I as well am an aspiring blog blogger but I’m still new to everything. Do you have any suggestions for novice blog writers? I’d really appreciate it.|

  15. Aw, this was an extremely good post. Taking the time and actual effort to make a top notch article… but what can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and don’t seem to get nearly anything done.|

  16. Can I simply say what a comfort to find someone who really understands what they’re talking about online. You certainly realize how to bring a problem to light and make it important. More and more people ought to read this and understand this side of your story. I was surprised that you’re not more popular because you certainly have the gift.|

  17. I loved as much as you’ll receive carried out right here. The sketch is attractive, your authored subject matter stylish. nonetheless, you command get got an nervousness over that you wish be delivering the following. unwell unquestionably come more formerly again since exactly the same nearly a lot often inside case you shield this hike.|

  18. Pingback: Order Weed in NY

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The Stand