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8 years on... (tigger warning, long.. sorry)

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8 years on... (tigger warning, long.. sorry)

Postby Tammy23updated » Sat Mar 02, 2019 7:11 pm

Hello there, this is as update to my story 8 years on. I apologise how long it took me to post this, I lost my original copy so I re wrote it and I seemed to procrastinate it the second time around because I knew I was going to have to sit with these crappy feelings sober… again! That being said I wrote this over a few weeks so it can be a bit long winded, my bad haha


Firstly and most importantly I want to start off by saying if you’ve found your way onto this site and this particular forum because you’re doing ‘research’ for someone you suspect has Munchausen’s (spouse, friend, child, parent, cousin, neighbour) I STRONGLY urge you to not confront them… it is so dangerous, not for you but for them. Unfortunately what happens when someone is being called out for their actions/behaviour it can make them hurt themselves in a way to prove they’re not doing this and that can have deadly consequences. Or they’ll just bail. We’re runners and when someone has cottoned on to what we’re doing we’ll pack up and start somewhere fresh. If you care for this person, contact a trained professional, always use words like “I suspect this is happening” you don’t want allegations to something that might not be the case hinder that persons treatment or your relationship, it can be a long road back to redemption.

And if you’re here because you think you may have this, well for starters… you are not alone, you are not a waste of space, no one hates you. This is a learnt behaviour that can get better. There is hope. You will be ok… it will better, I promise.


For those of you who don’t know, I posted my story 8 years ago on this site in this forum under Tammy23. My name is Tammy and I was born on the 23rd (yay for young me with no understanding of anonymity haha) I was about 90% sure I had Munchausen’s but I was never diagnosed back then because I was a fantastic #######4 artist. However 8 years on I do have that diagnosis now along with BPD (border line personality disorder) I’d been treated for many things over the years and put on many different meds to help with these wrong diagnosis’s but to be clear with you, doctors and trained professionals need you to be honest with them for them to be able to treat you properly!


So I need to back track a little… oh umm yeah fresh at 20, man I was miserable I hated everything about my life and where I was heading, I’d been hurting myself purposely for 8 years now (since I was 12) each time I became more clever and more risky. I wish this is where my story stopped, but it doesn’t. I kept the same behaviours up for another 6 plus years. I am riddled with scars, eventually I ran out of real-estate on my left leg (first place I started) so I had to find new territory, because I am right handed I would hurt my left side as it was easier to reach. Then my left arm took the brunt of allot more episodes of Munchausen’s and once again I was close to losing it, which at the time was thrilling because I could then be the victim to something I done to myself. At the time of hurting my arm this badly I was actually in a drug rehab, the beautiful thing about living in this country (Australia for those who didn’t know) the government literally pays you to go to rehab. I was being sponsored by the government to ‘fix’ my life. I’m so grateful for this.

(Trigger warning about drugs)

Since I mentioned rehab I’m going to have to glue the pieces together, as previously mentioned I have been in and out of hospital since the age of 12, I've done some horrendous things to my body, inside and out. I’ve have had hundreds of surgery and I’ve been prescribed many types of pain relief. The thing about my Munchausen's and what I do what I do is it started out for attention, attention from my mum, then friends, then doctors and nurses man even strangers but eventually people get tired, like they have other things going on in their lives. The one thing I loved the most about hospital was surgery, I can’t really explain it but just the whole ordeal used to excite me and be my number one goal. I loved being ‘put to sleep’ I loved the ‘white milk’ (propofol) I can see how MJ used it and sadly died from it, it’s so awesome to be awake one second and the next out. I've always had trouble getting to sleep, once I am asleep I'm fine but getting to sleep is such a struggle for me, even still now.


And I'm rambling… so in hospital I’d get lots of drugs then I would get discharged with endone, OxyContin ect. I was a kid when I started taking them for when I wasn’t in pain, first I used to take them before I hurt myself so it didn’t hurt as much (I’ll never explain how I hurt myself either, I'm not here to enable anyone) then I found myself taking them to help me sleep or for fun, I NEVER took the dose I was prescribed, sometimes I’d really push it and take a whole sheet, it used to be thrilling for me to wake up 20 hours later not figuring out how I got into bed. I don’t know why I enjoyed doing this but I did.


I was introduced to weed at 15, by this stage I wasn’t at home and in youth housing in a dodgy area. I was going to a TAFE (like highschool but really relaxed and not many people and it was more life skills than school school) I made some mates and they invited me around their places and they were smoking cones, they asked if I ever had it and I told them I had (I hadn’t and I think they knew that when they asked if not they definitely knew before I left haha) they offered me one, I had no idea what I was doing so I said after they went, I needed to see how you're meant to smoke this out of this dirty flower vase. So I got high, I couldn’t stop coughing for like 10 mins and everyone kept saying “gotta cough to get off” no idea what that meant but after coughing a lung up I had the giggles like you wouldn’t believe, I had no concept of time or reality. They asked if I’d been in ‘the bubble’ which I said I hadn’t so they then proceeded to put me in it. I won’t explain it but long story short it only works on new stoners and everyone else is in on it. I was scared and the room started to spin and I threw my guts up all over the lounge floor, I was so body stoned I couldn’t get up so my mate started to clean it and he threw up while cleaning mine, you’d think it was a bad experience to never want to do it again but I turned into a full-fledged stoner after that.


So I smoked every day, I'm 20 years old now wasn’t a big fan of drinking (can drink at 18 in aus) but felt like I couldn’t live without weed. Between hospital visits, trying to hold down a job and flatting I’d hit a wall in my life, that’s when a googled search led me to this website and here I am. My early twenties turned into a $#%^ fest I can’t even explain, I'm still working through some trauma I went through but at 21 I was offered ice for the first time, and got very addicted. Please, PLEASE don’t try ice, meth, coke, speed... I don’t know what it’s called where you’re from but here its ice and you smoke it in a glass pipe and $#%^ goes downhill VERY fast. You’ll find yourself surrounded by people who call you when they want or need something, they don’t care about you just what you’ve got (money, car, drugs, dealers) this drug is evil and will turn you into a person you never thought you could, it’s scary and messes up your mental health, and if you have bad mental health to begin with it will make your mental health way worse, trust me it’s not worth it… I don’t mean to harp on and lecture anyone but just one time, one time for me is all it took and I was already thinking of my next fix. If you're struggling with drugs I urge you to seek out a rehab, a long rehab.. 30 days will get you sober/detoxed but not teach what you need to know to stop using. I ended up in psychosis in a psych ward that refused to discharge me unless it was to an impatient rehab, I went to one that had a 12 month program who also specialised in mental health, this is where I got the help and wakeup call I needed but it didn’t happen overnight and I made many mistakes, I also got discharged many times. I'm now 23-24 in this part of my life.


I was in and out of the same rehab 8 times over 2 years. They didn’t want to give up, I can pick the thread up from the start of the post where this is where I nearly lost my arm in rehab, I’d had a good relationship with my therapist in there and I got along with all the staff, they thought my arm being infected was from self-harm, not exactly a lie they knew I self-harmed but not in a Munchausen's way. After 6 surgeries and a 2 month hospital stay the doctors put me in a cast (I’d been in this situation before, I wrote about it in my first ever post) I was back at the rehab, had what I needed got into my cast without anyone knowing, seeing or evidence I had. When I went for my check up a few days later the hospital we not impressed I needed surgery fast thus making me feel like I had won and cleared up any suspicion the rehab staff for having thought it was me.


The thing about hospitals is you will meet some awesome doctors and nurses, but you will also come across ones who take not #######4, have no patients, and are rude and judgmental. The amount of times I could hear nurses talking horribly about me from my room (they be in the hallway or at nurses desk) like damn that $#%^ hurts, I know they know that I'm doing this but empathy can save a life. One night I had a breakdown spazzed out took my IV and vac dressing off my arm and hopped in a taxi and went back to rehab, rehab was habitual now, they fed me, I had a bed, I had friends, the government paid me to go and paid my rent and I got along with the staff. This time when I got back I was met by my favourite staff member, we had a big chat and for the first time in my life… I let someone in. I'm 25 here.


The next day it was on, I was sent to my therapist and had a meeting with the big boss and my case manager, the rehab had a strict no self-harm rule, I had to be discharged it was a blanket rule that couldn’t be over looked but they wanted me to come back for the 9th time and do it honestly, openly and right. They got me a bed at a women’s shelter for the 2 weeks I was out and had someone come out and check on me. Not to mention hospital follow ups but that was normal for me. I used in that time, I was offered ice and I thought that I would be ok now because I’d been clean so long and learnt so much… yeah no, that’s not how addiction works. I was a mess by the time I went back and that’s where the real work started.


The thing about Munchausen's is it feels like a big dirty secret, like everyone will judge you and you can’t tell anyone because no one will understand or see you side… this cycle is what’s keeps us sick, people want to help you out there. There is help for people like us. Me and my psych started working through my disorder and why I do what I do and my whole life story trying to peace it all together, I don’t have a huge AH-HUH moment but I have a few contributing factors they are..


1. My brother being hurt at a young age and my mum doting on him in hospital – I thought this was how I needed my mum to love me.

2. Actually hurting myself and people making a fuss – people saw me… cared about me.

3. Lack of family – I must me a $#%^ person if my own family doesn’t want to be in my life, my dad didn’t even want to own me (never met him)

4. Being fat and a tomboy – bullied, no self-worth or esteem, hated myself.

5. Being a good liar, I could keep track of my stories and manipulate anyone, doctors would walk in adamantly saying I had hurt myself leaving thinking maybe I didn’t – the fake life/stories I told were easier for me to make up and edit because I hated my life so much, it was easier to live in a world I created. I created my own reality.

6. Sexual abuse – my cousin had abused me age 5.

7. Left alone allot – mum worked allot to support us so I was left to my own devices and thoughts, I didn’t have anyone to bounce ideas off.

8. Watching medical shows – from a young age I have watched medicals shows, I loved them. I preferred the real life ones but Grey’s Anatomy and House were awesome. This is where I learnt allot about what to say and not to say and medical trems. Also Greys and House depicted people with Munchausen's in a negative tone, that set the prescient in my head that’s how others will look/treat at me.

9. Google – I’d done many of searches on Munchausen's from a young age.. Some with false information, one of them being that people with this disorder with never get better and can’t be helped. (this is not true but I believed it)

10. I'm an addict (recovering to be precise) – hospital turned into my own dealer in a bizarre way as a kid. Weed then became my crutch until it didn’t work anymore and I wanted something else (yes, it’s a gateway drug in my opinion)

11. Never been in love – I'm 28 and never had a BF, I always thought something was wrong with me and deep down I thought no one could love me or understand what I've done from my eyes. (I get lonely, even now not having a partner but I believe my person is out there, I try to outweigh the bad with good, here are some good – I’ve never been cheated on, I’ve never been dumped or divorced, I don’t have to share anything haha, I have my whole bed to myself, I'm not responsible for another life)

12. Never felt unconditional love and acceptance – people with this disorder just want to be cared about, we just want someone to genuinely care, and not care after when we’re already in hospital, that creates a bad cycle.

13. No goals, aspirations or beliefs - I didn’t have a plan, didn’t want to learn, didn’t know where I was going in life, I had no faith and believed we lived to die. I've tried to commit suicide many of times.


We are all here for reason, we all have a story. I now believe in God, I am Christion but not religious. I got to church, I am a good person. You are loved. You have a purpose. You were created in Gods image. EVERYONE falls short. (We all have skeletons in out closet, we’re all fighting a battle, putting on an act, no one is perfect, we’ve all done things we regret)


So I should start wrapping this up then. I'm 18 months clean from drugs and my last Munchausen's episode and I haven’t been in a hospital in those 18months. I still get triggered but I am able to work through it now, knowing it will pass. I am not a victim to my situation, I've just learnt how to NOT live life so I have a lot to make up for. My relationship with my mother is stronger than it has ever been, I am honest and open with her and she to I. we talk about my childhood and answer each other’s questions, it’s nice to put the pieces together.


I am off all medication; I can never stick to my dose so it’s safer for me (always consult a doctor) There is no magic pill out there that’s going to cure you, you will reach the end of your road when you’ve had enough of what you’re doing or sadly you’ve accidently killed yourself (happens often with people with Munchausen's) CBT was helpful. Get a good Psych (in aus the government will pay for 9 sessions a year, see your GP) seek help, no one will shun you. You have nothing to fear, the only thing you should fear right now.. is yourself. There is help. You are worth it.
Take care everyone :)

“Sometimes the hardest people to love are the ones who need it the most.” - Laura Wiess
Last edited by Snaga on Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.
Reason: edited for font size and swear filter
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Re: 8 years on... (tigger warning, long.. sorry)

Postby Tammy23updated » Mon Mar 04, 2019 11:05 am

Oh dear I've made many typos, my apologies haha :D the title is meant to say trigger not tigger... Oh well it's is what it is :oops:
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Re: 8 years on... (tigger warning, long.. sorry)

Postby NaCoLaMom » Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:33 pm

Hi tammy! I’m in the beginning of the healing journey I hope. I have been harming myself since I was a kid but it’s gotten so much worse over the years. I decided to finally tell my psychologist the truth. I hope it will help. I’m looking for some support from people who are going through the same thing. I can’t talk to anyone about it. I’m married and have three children but if my husband knew he would divorce me and take the kids. I’m sure of it. So coming clean completely is not an option. Do you think you could be my person? I could really relate to everything you wrote. I too had numerous surgeries and I am on a ton of medication and it’s starting to really affect my health. I had a blood test done and my body doesn’t build antibodies right now and the doctors don’t know why. They’re trying to treat it with an immune booster vaccine but it’s not a high chance it will work. I might have really ###$ up and made myself seriously sick and I can’t even say I am not excited about it. But it’s scary because it’s out of my control. Every day I tell myself I am just gonna stop but it’s like an addiction. I just can’t no matter the consequences. My husband is barely hanging on on a thread because I am recovering from knee surgery and can’t drive because of that and a seizure disorder (which of course is not real but has gone too far to thraddle back).he has to work full time, take care of the children and go shopping and cook and I see that and tell myself I will at least stop the seizures but just yesterday I did it again! I am a disgusting human being! I hate myself for doing this and I love my family so much! I need to stop before I lose it all! But I can’t do it alone. I need someone to talk to. Please
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Re: 8 years on... (trigger warning, long.. sorry)

Postby Tammy23updated » Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:48 pm

NaCoLaMom wrote:Hi tammy! I’m in the beginning of the healing journey I hope. I have been harming myself since I was a kid but it’s gotten so much worse over the years. I decided to finally tell my psychologist the truth. I hope it will help. I’m looking for some support from people who are going through the same thing. I can’t talk to anyone about it. I’m married and have three children but if my husband knew he would divorce me and take the kids. I’m sure of it. So coming clean completely is not an option. Do you think you could be my person? I could really relate to everything you wrote. I too had numerous surgeries and I am on a ton of medication and it’s starting to really affect my health. I had a blood test done and my body doesn’t build antibodies right now and the doctors don’t know why. They’re trying to treat it with an immune booster vaccine but it’s not a high chance it will work. I might have really ###$ up and made myself seriously sick and I can’t even say I am not excited about it. But it’s scary because it’s out of my control. Every day I tell myself I am just gonna stop but it’s like an addiction. I just can’t no matter the consequences. My husband is barely hanging on on a thread because I am recovering from knee surgery and can’t drive because of that and a seizure disorder (which of course is not real but has gone too far to thraddle back).he has to work full time, take care of the children and go shopping and cook and I see that and tell myself I will at least stop the seizures but just yesterday I did it again! I am a disgusting human being! I hate myself for doing this and I love my family so much! I need to stop before I lose it all! But I can’t do it alone. I need someone to talk to. Please


Hi there Nacolamom, I can feel the distress in your post. It's OK, it's all going to be OK.. stop beating yourself up or you'll keep going down that road... Trust me, I've been there. I faked having cancer and would have 'seizures' I was 18 at the time and eventually you realise like hey I can't miraculously get better so I've gotta keep doing this, it got so much to keep up so I just left and moved somewhere else. The problem here is you're telling yourself that 'if I don't have another seziure or episode they might be suss on me and know I'm lying or (and I don't mean to be blunt, but sometimes we need the truth) something happened and brought up feelings of needing love and attention, someone could have been rude to you or ignored you or they have an eventful day and it make you feel less than... It's OK, you're already doing so well opening up to your psych. Are you being honest and vulnerable with them? Can you identify why you do it? Are you trying to escape? (responsibilities? Mum/work?) when I was 'sick' I didn't have to work, therefore I didn't have to be a functioning human in society and could sleep all day and get pity for it. Stop replaying all the bad things you've said and done, this keeps you sick, I'd play a movie in my brain of all the lies and people I manipulated for their attention, I'd make up scenarios of being caught and have panic attacks thinking about it. If you don't try and find a solution now and stop this you're going to be me in 8 years regretting not doing it sooner before I lost all that trust and time. Also I was convinced if my mum ever found out I had done this to myself the whole time that she'd disown me... The opposite happened, she wanted to help me and our relationship is great now. I know that having a husband is a different ball game but truth is you don't know how he's going to respond, he may even have a suspicion but loves you too much to say anything. Your theropist should be able to help you figure out an action plan, also I don't mind being your person. I know how it's feels to carry this around feeling like no one can understand and you have no one to talk to, if I can be that for someone else.. I'm helping that 12 year old girl me that's still within. If you need send me a DM on here ☺️
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