voice Archive

DBT Skills: Interpersonal Effectiveness

I have to admit that social interaction and communication are not my strongest points. This is a relatively new development for me, or so I thought. I used to think I was great at using my voice, at standing up for myself, at being in social situations. Today there are a number of barriers that prevent me from being effective in interpersonal communication. One of them is mental and emotional health issues. It’s really hard for me to connect with others when I don’t feel so great myself. Another is acute hearing loss, in both ears, coupled with tinnitus. And finally – and probably the most overwhelming for me, especially when it comes to asking for what I need and speaking up for myself, or saying no when being asked for something – I was raised in an environment that didn’t really encourage me to use my voice under any circumstances. In fact, it was preferred if I was invisible, or at least that’s how I translated it.

Devotion

I would like to welcome the newest member of our writing team, Reba Overkill. In its first post with us, it speaks through poetry to recall its struggle with being heard by the people who matter. Thanks for sharing with us, Reba!

Trigger Warning: allusions to sexual abuse, self-injury & suicide attempts.

it all came together a few nights ago, weak and bent
in your lap, feeling lost, feeling like it was years ago when
i was never anything like the me that you know. i was
someone who was trying to speak, nobody listened and i didn’t
understand because i can hear so fucking well, i listened and
i heard sirens, and songs that i would sing with people who i did
not end up loving very kindly. i heard calm assertions by
people in authority that left cracks in parts of me. i heard
the breath i took in when i woke up and was not dead, even
for all my trying. i heard people leaving hints for their departure,
inclining heads towards one-way tickets to not existing.

my kitchen smells like food & i hate the smell of food

nothing fits.
what makes sense is not what i know.
i can’t function.
i am a crazy person.
there is a bird in my throat trying to sing.
why can’t it sing?

The Human Condition

Trigger warning for mention of incest

…I love the definitions of stigma and mental illness. They complement each other so well, don’t you think? Kind of like a cocktail, a drink made by mixing various spirits and/or fruit juices…and any hybrid mixture…and any number of different drugs used together to treat a condition. I personally like 1 part stigma to 2 parts mental illness: it has a nice little kick to it. Combine the three and well, whew, you have a real drink here. I – a person – can only be facetious about this. If I wasn’t I’d be blubbering all over this keyboard.