This is simply a rant that I hope can sift through the chaotic thoughts I’m having tonight and bring some semblance of meaning to a string of self delusional thoughts. Feel free to add any insight if you care to read through. The more I learn the more I believe that the constant attempt to find singular cause and effect is extremely dangerous. The mind is more complex than any individual could dare say they fully understand. It is not limited to narrow paths it must travel through. Every moment of conscious or unconscious being is a unique combination of environmental and internal interaction. The mind is ever evolving, learning, adapting and just plain changing. Every emotional state I feel is so multifaceted and affected by an infinite amount of causations. To say that an emotional state is caused be one thing and in turn should be fixed by one solution is, not only insufficient, but insulting to the complexity of the brain itself. I will look at my substance abuse with my depression. It is common that these two conditions coincide and there is also a common debate on which one causes the other. Perhaps in the interest of preventing one from initiating the other it is good to know which causes the other, but for the interests of helping those already affected by both, the question becomes more harmful then useful. To say that the addiction caused the depression may be partly true, and I must emphasize partly, but to say that solving the addiction will cure the depression seems integrally flawed. Once someone is addicted or someone is depressed you will hear countless times that each is a downward spiral. Once initiated, they take on a life of their own, getting worse and worse. While an addiction may exacerbate a depression and vice versa they are not the only things that affect each other. Take away the addiction and the depression may still be on a downward spiral of its own. Ill add isolating to the mix. I have an extremely bad habit of isolating myself from everything and everyone. The worse I feel the more I want to isolate and the more I isolate the worse I feel. So now I’m depressed and addicted, which has put me in a state which I begin to start isolating. Take away the addiction and I’ll still be depressed and isolating. Not to mention any withdrawal symptoms to further the depression, in turn furthering the isolation and the downward spiral. Let’s add the self-hatred which I battle constantly. The self-hatred is a very unforgiving and horrid outlook of myself that leads to dangerously self-destructive thoughts and actions. I cannot distinguish if my social anxiety is caused by this self-hatred or is a result but at this point they are now both here. And just like with the interaction of addiction and depression they are fueling each other. The self hatred and social anxiety are affecting how depressed I am, how much I want to use, or how much I want to isolate. Add cutting into the mix and there is another spiral. Nightmares make life worse and a worse life can bring on nightmares. It just goes on and on. Now think that each event experienced does not affect me in a single way but in a multitude of ways. I’ll look at my suicide attempt. After the attempt the stay in the hospital was extremely embarrassing and guilt ridden. It was extremely discomforting to have my family see me in ICU for a week and then the psych ward after that. Every time they would come to visit I would get panic attacks. My heart would beat like crazy in my chest, I would sweat profusely, I would get dizzy and black out for a few seconds if I tried to stand up, I was worried beyond belief, always picturing horrible scenarios or trying to imagine what they could possibly think about me. The love and support that they provided did help keep the terrible feelings of loneliness at bay but that didn’t matter to my social anxiety and self-hatred. While the guilt of the pain I caused is keeping me from making another attempt that guilt also makes me feel a thousand times worse for even attempting it at all. Furthering the depression enough to where the pain is so bad it may not be contained by the knowledge of what pain another attempt could cause. Each action or event interacts in multiple ways, some of which are not as nice as others. This entire system quickly becomes an interlocking network of causes and effects that blanket and suffocate me. How to unravel this network is beyond my ability to see. But one thing becomes apparent in my mind; each emotional state I enter is unique. Be it one depressive episode from another or from a hypomania phase or an extremely irritable spell or a burst of anger. Even if I’m feeling horribly similar to a time before, I am experiencing it at a different time with a mind that has numerous experiences and changes since the last occurrence. I have come to a conclusion that the best approach to battling this inside me is to obtain a higher level of awareness. An awareness of my thoughts, emotions and actions. If I ever hope reach some semblance of control inside my mind I must first try to understand what is going on at any given time. Only when I know what is happening, will I be able to act in an appropriate response. I’ll look at isolating again. The more I isolate the worse I feel. So I suppose it would be common for people to say just get out and interact with people then. The problem is in knowing what I’m capable of doing. If I’m in an extremely depressed or anxious state then it would be impossible for me to get any joy out of going somewhere there is a group of people. It would just make me nervous, anxious, uncomfortable, etc. And in turn further a darkened or jittery mood. Instead one on one interaction with a person I feel safer with might be more helpful. If I’m in a hypo manic state then one on one interaction sometimes isn’t enough and they become boring to me. If I’m in an irritable state then any interaction at all would result in me acting in such a way I would regret, so isolating is actually my better option. I suppose knowing when to push myself and when to give myself some slack is going to be extremely important. The problem I’m having is that the more I try to understand myself the less I know. Recently I’ve realized that I had this infuriatingly stubborn belief that while my emotions were all over the place my thoughts were intact. Even though my emotional mind was being thrown around and shredded to pieces I believed the process by which I thought and reasoned was unchanged. I have come to realized that not only is it not unchanged it is completely reworked. From a hypo manic state to a depressive state to an irritated state the way in which I reason and think is so skewed beyond belief I literally couldn’t believe it for the longest time. Which in retrospect seems silly to me. It is really quite simple to see. At some points suicide is a perfectly reasonable expectation of myself while at other times I can’t understand how I could persuade myself to such an act with the use of reason. Reason that seems perfectly sound at one moment is completely irrational at another. Everything is relative, my thinking and reasoning is relative to my emotional state. This makes it difficult to distinguish how I am feeling at any given time because at any given time I make sense to myself. It’s after a little time passes and I’m in a different state do I realize that what I was thinking before was skewed. I hope to be able to recognize how I’m feeling or thinking at any given time. But I am definitely not there yet.