Is There Anybody Out There? Comment If You Can Hear Me

Leave a comment and tell me about you if you read!

If you’re reading this, will you leave me a comment?

Every once in a while I get a message from a reader telling me that my blog resonates with her, that she appreciates my honesty, and that she appreciates that I’m giving voice to experiences and opinions that are often silenced. It feels really great. For someone who spends a lot of time alone–or rather, a lot of time in the company of people too young to articulate complex thoughts–it feels good to know that even though I often feel lonely and unheard, people actually do read what I write on occasion.

Sometimes those conversations continue and that person ends up writing a guest post, or we chat on Twitter* every once in a while, but often it ends with my “thank you.” I don’t get a chance to know these people who read my work.

Other times, I don’t get blog comments or these kinds of messages for days. Even the angry 12-step rebuttals tell me someone is reading, but when nothing comes in at all, the silence of my life begins to crowd around me and stuff up my head like a bad cold. So, I’ve decided to do a sort of “sound check!” Find out if anyone’s actually reading this, and by doing that, learn a thing or two about you (if you do, in fact, exist). I’m publishing a mini-survey to get you know you. Will you leave me a comment and tell me your answers–as many as you feel comfortable providing? Let me get to know you, too!

*about Twitter: Today, October 13th, I am staying off Twitter as part of a protest related to the Weinstein sexual harassment scandal (my computer was autosigned in when I opened it this morning but I didn’t check anything, I swear…and Crowdfire might autopost for me…it might a stupid version of participation, but I’m going to do my best because…fuck Trump) Rose McGowan made some statements about her experiences with the Hollywood creeper and had her account temporarily closed in response. Twitter released a statement assuring everyone that it was simply because she tweeted a personal phone number. Maybe that’s true, or maybe they were looking for an excuse to silence a woman speaking vehemently against a powerful Hollywood mogul. Who knows? What we do know is that Trump has been sending out tweets that may set off a nuclear war, and his account remains untouched–apparently, according to Twitter, because of his “newsworthiness.” Um. Wow. There won’t be any news when we’re all dead. Anyway, that is why I am participating. Any excuse to silence a woman speaking out about sexual violence, but when the idiot president violates the rules by insulting others and making threats of violence, it’s “too newsworthy” to stop. So you won’t see me on Twitter today, October 13 2017. 

Getting To Know You Survey

I would love to see some of my readers leave comments with the answers to these questions! Feel free to skip anything you’re not comfortable sharing.

-What’s your name?

-How old are you?

-Where are you from?

-Tell me something random and interesting about yourself that you don’t usually get the opportunity to share.

-What accomplishment are you most proud of?

-You get three wishes: one for yourself, one for someone else, and one for the world in general. What are they?

-What is your relationship with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, mental illness, addiction, etc?

-What are your best recovery/healing tools?

-Why do you read this blog?

-What kind of topics would you like to see covered here, or in the media in general about mental health?

-What questions do you have about issues related to mental health, opioid addiction, or domestic violence?

-If you could visit anywhere in the world, where would it be?

-If I was going to visit your hometown, what would you recommend I do first?

-What’s you favorite book or author?

-Favorite movie?

-Can you recommend me something awesome to watch on Netflix or Amazon?

-What science fiction invention do you most wish actually existed?

That’s all! If there’s anybody out there, please leave a comment with answers so I can get to know you, too. Thank you to anyone who does!

If you want to share even more about yourself on Betty’s Battleground, consider writing a guest post or participating in the monthly Parenting with Mental Illness feature interview. Learn more here.

18 thoughts on “Is There Anybody Out There? Comment If You Can Hear Me

  1. Hi,
    I am Zoe, I am 24! I am from Newcastle in the north east of England but now I live on the south coast. I suffer with depression & Anxiety. I find talking about how I am feeling helps, If I need to cry then I cry! It’s best to let it out. If I could visit anywhere it would be New York at Christmas time 🙂 I love any books really as long as they have me gripped & interested I will read it! Xx

    • Hi Zoe. Thank you for taking the time to respond. It’s great to hear from you! I completely agree: let it out when it needs to come out. We need to remove that awkward shameful stereotype from crying (for both genders). It’s totally okay to cry!

  2. -What’s your name?

    -Where are you from?
    MIlwaukee, WI

    -Tell me something random and interesting about yourself that you don’t usually get the opportunity to share.
    I’m a hell of a good cook

    -What accomplishment are you most proud of?
    Getting my Masters Degree

    -What is your relationship with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, mental illness, addiction, etc?
    Well… that’s a little complicated. I was/am fortunate enough to know that I have an addictive personality. Addiction runs in my family. My father was a VIetnam Vet with PTSD so you know… I guess when you experience it at young age you tend to develop it on some level. Myself, I’m diagnosed alexithymic but I have been getting better over the years.

    -What are your best recovery/healing tools?
    For me, the mind is powerful. And I work on expanding my awareness of my effect on others and their emotional responses through… almost like a rewiring technique. You watch for certain cues and emotions and you search for understanding… it’s difficult to explain. I meditate a lot, helps calm the mind down.

    -Why do you read this blog?
    I appreciate the raw, brutal, honesty, and as previously mentioned, I seek to understand things. I also believe that by sharing your struggles and triumphs, you can make the world a better place. It is important to know that we aren’t alone.

    -What’s you favorite book or author?
    I don’t have a favorite book or author. I read a lot of comics(Garth Ennis, Grant Morrison, Brian K Vaughn), I read a lot of books (Neil Gaiman, George RR Martin) and I read a lot of non-fiction as well. I guess I read a lot.

    -What science fiction invention do you most wish actually existed? Faster than Light travel.

    • Hello Jason, nice to “meet” you. Thank you for taking the time to tell me about yourself. I LOVE Neil Gaiman too. I haven’t read the George RR Martin books yet. So you’re saying they really are all they’re cracked up to be?
      Okay follow up question: so if faster than light travel existed, would it also be time travel??
      If you’d ever like to do a guest post about growing up with a combat veteran with PTSD, shoot me an email

  3. Hi I’m Bonnie. I live in Seattle and am 58 years old.
    Story about real everyday life, hard times, emotional experiences, learning, changing, failing and starting over are all important to me. Once people get to know me they usually always hear that I’ve lived through a tornado that destroyed my house with me in it. That experience has shaped my last 6 years in many ways. Beauty in many forms is healing for me. The outdoors, hiking, snowshoeing, the beach, a walk through the park or watching a sunrise or sunset. Art, poetry and music I also find healing.
    I’m sleepy 😴 so I’ll not answer more questions now.
    Keep writing.

    • Hi Bonnie! It’s nice to “meet” you. Thanks for leaving the comment. You’re in my hometown! How long have you been and how are you liking it? I’m glad you survived the tornado, although I imagine that must have been absolutely terrifying. The Pacific Northwest is a great place for beauty. Natural beauty is a balm for me as well, though I feel very distanced from nature lately by my life circumstances. Working on it!

  4. Good ….early morning or late evening…. seems I often have these all nighters as I am now a 41 yr old mother of 6, 2 are now “adults”, recovering addict, sober now with no addictions, eventually lost custody of 5 children over 5 years. Havent heard my youngest childs voice in 3 years. Regrets? Yes. Daily depression battle? Yes. Can’t rewrite my past. Can’t forgive myself. I’m sorry will never be enough. I failed at the only job that ever really mattered… Mommy

    • Tasha, my love to you, and thank you for coming by and leaving a comment. There are no words to salve the loss of a child, no matter what form that loss comes in. I’m so sorry. But I’m proud of you for managing to achieve your sobriety even with your regrets. I hope you find a way to forgive yourself. If you ever feel that telling your story will help, this blog is open to you. <3

  5. Hi 🙂 I Read Your article on the 9 overdoses, then looked you up and Found your blog. You are an example of strenght and hard-work. Know that I admire you and would not be disappointed by any difficulties you might live in the future. Just the fact that you fought so strongly your addiction is incredible to me. Thanks for your honesty and share. Xxx

  6. Hi, I’m from Singapore and I found your blog through the article you wrote for vox. It’s been a very eye-opening read, but I’ve been also so encouraged by your posts so many times. Thank you for your honest and beautiful writing.

    • Thank you so much Lyn. It really means a lot that you took the time to leave this comment and tell me this. I’ve never been to Singapore, what’s it like? Have you ever been to the United States?

  7. Dear Elizabeth,
    I just read this “call out” (after I did a mini introduction on another post). I am writing from Newcastle, NSW, Australia where I have lived for 7 years. I am originally from the Seattle, WA area (pretty much all over the PNW). I found you through an article in The Fix (about “counting days”–which I printed to refer to–it resonated all the way 8,000 miles away). I am 58 with two adult daughters who are amazing. I am proud of having home births, solo parenting, getting through nursing school, surviving childhood and adult abuse, including domestic abuse, moving to another country, recovering from opiate substance use, regaining my Nursing registration despite losing it in two counties related to substance abuse, and frankly getting up out of bed everyday reasonably sane and working in a job I love. I live with PTSD, anxiety, depression, addiction hsitory and a husband, two cats and a fat pug, in a gorgeous country where everyone has accents (except me, of course).

    If you were to come here, the first thing I suggest is going to the beach. Newcastle beaches are incredible. Come Here!
    My favourite movies are Fight Club, Say Anything, Garden State, Memento, Fargo..okay…and my favourite authors–I read constantly so hard to say. Anne Lamont and JK Rowlings stand out–only because I have read everything by both of them but so many more.
    I found your blog and now am reading your posts and am in awe of your honesty and courage. I find resonance with most everything. Thank you.
    All Love, Jocelyn

    • Hi Jocelyn. Nice to “meet” you and thank you for leaving a comment. I LOVE Fight Club and Memento too..and Fargo..I’ll have to check Anne Lamonte, I’m not familiar. I did enjoy Harry Potter when I was younger but haven’t read other of Rowlings’ work yet.
      You sound like an incredible woman. Thank you for stopping by and leaving a comment. XOXO

  8. Hi Elizabeth,
    I read your story with great pleasure interest. My daughter was involved with an abuser right out of high school. The hard part for my ex and I was knowing what to do. We did nothing until it came to getting her out. Later she told us that she would not have listened anyway.

    Your story was very moving.

    I was wondering if there was a significant event that changed your situation ?

    Thanks for writing this.

    It is stuff that is really good especially for those of us who did not grow up around drugs. In my day they just weren’t around as much.

    All the best.

    • Hey Alan. Thank you for your response. I’m sorry for what your daughter–and your family–has been through. I’m glad she’s okay now. Please keep reminding her that she is beloved and valuable; don’t ever let her forget it. I think that’s the biggest mistakes families of abuse survivors make. We don’t generally go around telling the people we love that we love them all the time because it feels kind of weird and we just assume they know anyway, but for abuse survivors, it’s really easy to forget that we are loved. And it’s even easier to believe we are hated if we make a mistake or someone gets angry or even annoyed with us. I know it would be difficult to be in the middle of an argument and feeling very angry at your daughter and still say “I love you…” but that would go so far. She’s probably right, that she wouldn’t have listened if you’d told her not to be with him when they were together. I certainly didn’t. Thank you for commenting and please let me know if you have any other questions. I’m not a professional, but I’m happy to share my thoughts and experiences with you if it helps at all.

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