Dear uninvited guest,

I don’t know who you are, how you got here or when you’ll leave. All I know is you hover over me each and every second of the day.

Every now and then (more often than I’d like) you swoop inside my soul and chip away at my being & my sanity. I didn’t know anything about you until I met you, and now I know all too much. In fact I’m sure you’ve taken over my whole being and I solely exist as you now, I don’t know where I’ve gone? You seem to have taken control of my body and mind, and evicted my happy, fun, chatty, positive self.

I knew from the day you arrived I would have to use every ounce of my being to try to drown you out & battle with all my will to listen & find the real me, buried beneath your smothering weight. But it’s so hard when you steal all of my physical and mental energy, I use all I have left in me to spend fun, happy, quality time with my son, as no matter what happens I do not want him to have to meet you first hand when you appear in me. That in itself is exhausting, so I often find myself with little or no energy to suppress you, this means when my son is all tucked up, bathed, fed & warm, I let you consume me, I have no other option. You reopen scars from years ago, ones I’ve spent a lot of time healing.

You drag out my darkest thoughts & make me see the negative in every situation. You whisper down my ear all day & night, telling me I’m not good enough, I’m incapable of being loved, I will fail at all I put my hand to, I’m not desirable, my friends are talking behind my back, I’m a chore to be around, I would be better off not even trying and just staying in bed all day on my own.

I see the look in everyone’s eyes, they don’t know who I am anymore but how can I expect them to when I have no clue either? I’ve become very accustomed to the pitying eyes, the judgemental eyes, the disbelieving eyes, the doubtful eyes, the prying eyes, the awkward eyes, the tired eyes & the frustrated eyes. I’m draining all the energy of those who come close to me, this is probably why I spend a lot of time alone.

People avoid me, I know that & I don’t blame them. You have turned my friends into aliens, people who I no longer know & in return you’ve turned me into an alien to them. They assume it’s me, this is just my attitude now, they assume I’m having problems in my relationship and this is the outcome, they feel sorry for my partner for putting up with my ways. They have NO idea, & I don’t know if it’s one of your whispers or if it’s genuinely me but I feel like the majority of them don’t even try to understand. They never will I suppose. Unless they one day have children, feel the huge shift in their life & ultimately meet you first hand, which I wouldn’t wish upon my worst enemy.

Ignorance is bliss as they say. But I also have to put myself in their shoes and before I had children, I wore rose tinted glasses as well. I thought I knew what to expect, I was adamant I would not use dummies or formula feed, I would never argue in front of my child and my bond with my partner would hugely intensify and I would feel like I was falling in love all over again. But life has other plans, & so I can relate to them, but if only they could try to see things from my point of view.

I feel like people are whispering behind my back, feeling sorry for my partner, muttering & repeating things I said to him in front of them. I feel like they are against me, they don’t like who I am now, & neither do I. But they are just confirming your whispers that I’m a nasty horrible person who doesn’t deserve love of any kind. I find myself avoiding them, not having energy to reply to messages or answer calls, I no longer know what to say, whatever I say they won’t fully understand & it’s exactly the same with family. I avoid them at all costs, when I get off the phone from them I find myself stressed and feeling more alone than ever.

All they talk about is themselves, all they think about is themselves, I don’t feel related to any of them, I have & always will feel like the outcast. And as awful as it sounds I’m glad to live so far away and I’m glad they don’t visit much, I feel awkward around them, I can’t relax because I’m waiting for the little digs, the questions and lectures about any choice I make in life. My son doesn’t even recognise them, he cries when they hold him. I’m constantly reminded of the price it costs to visit us, or the energy or how bad the traffic was.

I feel like they put a price on seeing my son and the fuel to come and visit is too much & not worth it. I will not let my family have the same effect on my son as they had on me, he will never know they don’t visit much or send presents or cards/letters just to say they love us. He will never know when I was in my darkest place they didn’t call just to check in or ask if there was anything they could do, he will never know the insensitive remarks they make or how one grand parent said they didn’t care about the baby and it was mine and Jarryd’s choice to have it, he will never notice he’s not as spoilt as most grand children or spoken of as highly. I will be all of those missing things to him just like I was to myself whilst growing up, I will always be his security blanket as well as my own. We have each other, we have our own little family, we don’t need them, we have our own unit now.

I refuse to allow their delusional views on family or poisonous ways to penetrate our little families bubble. You my uninvited guest has made me feel even more different and further apart from my family than ever before, but I actually don’t resent you for that, because it’s not been a sudden thing like the rest, it’s been ongoing for years and I just think having my son heightened it. They will always be selfish and flakey, & unfortunately they will always be my family, that’s the cards I’ve been dealt with, & I’m pretty sure they aren’t thrilled about me being apart of their family either, so it works both ways. But what I hate most about you tearing into my life uninvited is the change you’ve had on my partner and relationship, it’s kind of like you’ve been whispering in his ear too and drawn him onto your side.

You tell him constantly I’m no good, I’m a mean person, I nag because I feel like it, I bring it all on myself, I’m no fun to be around, I’m a lost cause, not worth trying to understand or help me, I don’t have a problem I don’t have PND this is just me now. And I know he believes all of the above, I can see it on his eyes, he’s so tired of me. He’s on egg shells constantly, wondering what will have me in tears next, or what will have me in fits of anger? He doesn’t recognise me anymore, but in turn I’m not sure I recognise him either? You tell me everyday he doesn’t love me, if he loved me he would walk the dog and empty the bins without being asked, he would cook for me and play with his son more if he loved me. He would talk to me when I’m down and pick me back up, he would reassure me & let me know he knows this isn’t me and he will constantly try and help me find myself again. But the thing is he doesn’t, he’s accepted this is life now, this is me now. He can’t remember the life we had before.

Don’t get me wrong we still have good days & I still adore him, but you make it hard to show that & you’ve also sucked all the energy out of him, which means he has no energy to try to make things better or help me. I’m fighting this fight alone. I always apologise to him, nearly everyday, I feel like I am screaming at the top of my lungs with ways he can help, but he just blocks it out, he doesn’t have time for it. Which in turn makes me believe that he doesn’t love me or care, or it would be in his second nature to try to understand me and help me fight my demons. I mourn for the pre parent version of us everyday. Don’t get me wrong I love my son more than anything in this world and would never change having him, but I miss my happy place; I miss the us before you arrived unannounced.

I took pride in my appearance, I had lots of friends, I had time to look after myself after a bad day, I had money to treat myself & we could be spontaneous together. He used to write me lovely notes and letters as did I, I used to buy him random presents & organise special days out, he used to talk about us meeting and how much our lives have changed for the better and how he couldn’t live without me. He used to tell me how beautiful I was daily and I used to just want to be cuddled up to him constantly, he used to be my team mate, on my side no matter what, and there to reassure me when things weren’t great. Not only have I lost myself, I’ve also lost him.

Slowly one by one you are picking off all my loved ones and making them disappear, when will he be next? When will he realise he can do much better than me? He could meet someone gorgeous whose been dealt a better hand in life and is therefore more loving and carefree. When will he realise he deserves the world and more, he deserves kisses and cuddles and intimacy every day. He deserves to be looked after too and I so desperately want to be all of that and more for him, but when I can’t even look after myself properly I don’t know how I’m supposed to do it for him.

I vow to myself that I will keep fighting against you, I won’t let you suck out the last remaining dust of my being, I will get back to me; my friends will understand me again & want to be around me. Jarryd will love me like when we first met, he will suddenly see the old me reappear again and in turn it will bring the old him back. In the future when we are old and wrinkled and surrounded by our gorgeous children, we will look back and smile with pride at all we’ve achieved. We will laugh at the people we once were, we will laugh at the huge arguments we used to have over house work, we will laugh because we will know that actually none of that stuff was important but at the time it felt as if everything was out of control if our house wasn’t perfect. We will squeeze each other’s weathered hands and fill up with pride at how we got through the thick of it. We always stuck together and we will look at our happy grown up family and realise that actually in the long run, we did alright and that we are the luckiest people in the world.

I’m sure that day will come and I can’t wait for it. That’s what keeps me going when you have a hold over me. That’s what silences you out. So for now my uninvited guest, don’t get too comfortable because each day your eviction is getting nearer & I’m slowly getting stronger. I will drown you out one day, but until then, please try to give me a break every now and then. If not for me then definitely for my little family, they deserve all the love in the world ?