Thursday, July 8, 2010

The Assertive One…

I have to start taking a more assertive  and dominant role in my mental healthcare.  For years, I haven’t even really known what medications I am taking.  Of the eleven pills I take every night, I can only name five off the top of my head.  This has got to change.  We have to start doing what is good for ME and not what is easiest for DAD.

Dad arrived tonight and was surly and cold to me as I had expected.  I asked about their trip to Washington, but he didn’t say much.  He did say my brother and him were on the Today Show.  We sat down and began to talk.  I immediately took an assertive role.

“I want to take my medications in the morning so they will help me while I am at work,” I told my father.  “They are wasted on me with me taking them at night while I am asleep.  Most of them wear off in only eight hours from what my psychiatrist has told me.”

That will give me two Klonopin for the morning of work and two Klonopin for my afternoon job of mowing lawns.  I feel this is the best solution to solving my anxiety.  I was taking two of the Klonopin at night before bed and I don’t deal with anxiety while I sleep.

“So you’re calling the shots now, are you?” dad asked facetiously, growing angry.  “What has gotten into you, son?”

“I will drive over in the morning at 7:30.  You can give me my medications.  And then I will go to work.  I need them in the mornings, dad,” I replied calmly.

“We can’t do that,” dad told me shaking his head vigorously. “We are going to stick to our regular schedule.”

“Then I am not going to take them,” I threatened as was my only leverage. “There is nothing you can do to make me take those medications forcibly.”

“Damnit!” dad replied. “What do you have to be such a hard head?  What has gotten into you?  Are you somehow throwing up your medications while I was gone?  You are just crazy as shit now.”

“Do we have a deal?” I asked calmly without raising my voice throughout this whole exchange.

“I don’t have any other choice,” my father replied giving in. “You have to take your medications.  I can’t deal with you if you aren’t on them. I am going home now and I don’t want to talk to you until tomorrow.  I hope you have a change of heart.”

I hated to do this to dad, but I really need my medications in the morning before work. I really abhor confrontations like this, but I think it will go a long way to helping me quell the anxiety and to help me do a better job at Wal-Mart.  To be less anxious all the time and nervous as I have been during the day will be a wonderful thing.  Especially late in the day.  I love my father very deeply and hate to disturb him so much, but things have got to change for my emotional and mental health.  We have a completely unhealthy relationship of dependency and caretaking.  For years, I have been as if I am an adult child.  It is about time I starting acting and asserting myself like a grown man.     


Susan said...

What does your doctor say about the timing of your medications?

My husband is diabetic. He has to take his meds on a strict schedule. He can't take them when convenient. I would think that mental illness drugs are the same way.

pattycakes said...

very good , you did it perfect , remaining calm and just telling him what you need and want . i think you should know what meds you are taking so you can ask the doctor if you can slowly elimate some of them or not
your getting yourself in charge of your life now which is good , and once your father has seen how much better it is going he will agree, for now he is just scared , but bravo to you
keep it up , you can do it
have a great day tomorrow
p.s. bet your mom is having a fit bout now huh lol ;o

Leaking Moonlight said...

Hugs, Andrew. I'm cheering for you.

Annabel said...

I'm glad you stood up for yourself. I hope that you can get your dad to understand your need to work and that he will really listen to you. I hope things continue to go well for you. Take it one day at a time.

Diana said...

I'm impressed! You obviously have given this much thought and am standing up for yourself. Good for you! As long as it really benefits you, please keep taking charge of your life....if it seems things are happening BADLY, then take a step back and figure out why and then maybe dad can help. I'm happy for you Jon,keep going!

Tiffany said...

Good for you for standing up for yourself & taking charge of your life! I hate confrontations, I'd probably just end up crying. Remember, one step at a time. :)

This IS The Fun Part! said...

I am so pleased that you stayed calm when dad got angry. That shows much more to him than you might think.

Don't forget to set that alarm clock - because I bet you'll probably sleep pretty well tonight after getting all that out of the way!!!

Good job dear, very good job!


Anonymous said...

I am glad it went well. Stand your ground and don't give in.

Now if you could stop drinking. You know once he finds out, he'll blame this "change" on alcohol and it will give him an excuse, then blame you and treat you like crap, instead of taking responsibility for the way he's treated you.

Good luck.

forsythia said...

You and your doctor need to discuss your meds and your dosage schedule. If your dad thinks he must continue to play a role in this, it should be as the "nurse" who follows the doctor's directions. The nurse does not get to call the shots.

justLacey said...

You and dad have each played your roles for a long time. The change will be hard at first for both of you and eventually you will fall into a better pattern of interaction. Hopefully now that your meds will be timed better, you won't need the alcohol for anxiety. Being a grown up sometimes means you have to make decisions that are better for you that you don't actually like so much :)

Sharon said...

I'mso happy that you stayed calm and asserted yourself so firmly. You know that eventually as you show him how responsible you are with your job and if you can keep on an even keel, he'll come around. I think he's just afraid that you're headed on a downward spiral, and he's also afraid that you won't need him anymore. But you're right, you're 38 years old and you need to show him that you're a man of your words. Time will prove that to him and he'll relax one of these days.

Sharon said...

Oh, and one other thing, about your meds. You're the patient, you have a right to your own medical records. You should have a list of your meds and the dosages that you take. What if you were, god forbid, in an accident. And what if they tried to reach your Dad but he was away visiting your brother, so he couldn't tell them what your meds are? Everyone who takes medicines like you do should carry a list in their wallet, just in case. You may never need it but it's important to have it. And remember, as much as you love your Dad - there ARE other pharmacies if necessary. I'm just saying.

Cheryl said...

One of the main things I worry about is the heat you're in. I can't even imagine how you're surviving in it. Please keep drinking water and taking breaks.

You and your dad love each other. You'll work this out.

Good luck finishing up the yard work today. Glad that you have goals for the money you're making. Later!

Happyone :-) said...

Staying calm throughout your conversation with your dad was the best thing you could do. Maybe when he sees how well you are doing he will come around to your way of thinking!

Mary K said...

Two thumbs up! Yes, as other said re-adjusting to the roles will take some time.