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About Sophelia

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  • Gender Female
  • Location North East England
  • Interests writing fantasy novels
    visiting historical sites and castles
    geeky computer stuff
    cognitive psychology and counselling skills
    learning Spanish (just started)

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  • Name Sophie
  1. UK Politics - a new thread for the new board

    Like the hijab?
  2. UK Politics - a new thread for the new board

    @Mormont, Helena, Sean.  So true! The idea is horrendous.  But also mockable.  This woman would be banned?   These occasions would be illegal:  
  3. European politics: Into the "right" futur

    Spanish election results look fascinating (about 70% of votes counted of now) - and definitely looks like the right is losing out to the left, contradicting the thread title.  Nobody knows what will happen next with no party set to get a majority...  
  4. Board Issues 4

    I am having the same problem as Pebs - much of the time but not all the time the forums are displaying in the left-hand side not in the main window (which is blank).  I too use Firefox.  It is intermittent so it's hard to know what's causing it, but it's really difficult to read anything that way.  Sophie
  5. Paris attacks 13-11-15

     to Dunhallym and everyone else in Paris just now.  Really horrible news and difficult to know whether there is anything to be done except pull together to support those affected, and carry on. It is shocking that so many people (while a very small minority of the world) are eager to hurt and shock and kill others and think that is a good thing.  This is so much harder to accept than a natural disaster.  My heart goes out to everyone affected by this, Sophie
  6. Austria Bound!

    Interesting move - Vienna is a very majestic place, keep us posted as it will be interesting to hear your impressions.  I don't know Austria well at all but I couldn't resist looking on tripadvisor to see if there was a Mexican restaurant there and there is something approximating one:   Always on the search for Mexican restaurants in unexpected places.  But yes, in Europe you definitely have to keep an open mind on exactly what 'Mexican' is (but have fun trying the variations - me and Mentat still reminisce longingly about the Czech-Mex we found in Prague).  This one in Vienna from one of  the comments at least seems to be run by a Mexican (but with only two reviews it's hard to assess its quality).   Good luck! Sophie
  7. *hugs* to Min.  It was horrific to hear about this and see the photos: to have been so close by almost to have witnessed it must be very disturbing.   Like most people here I don't think airshows should be banned although I wouldn't miss them myself.  I think people have a right to engage in risky sports and other people have a right to watch them.  However I do think that given that there are occasional accidents, I'm very surprised that they would hold an airshow above a road, as in this case.  I would hope and expect that they would hold it over barren land or close the roads in future.     Where I live in Sunderland there is an annual airshow which is not for profit.  Everyone can watch for free.  For health and safety reasons all the stunts take place over the sea (the planes fly in across the city but planes flying across towns is a normal low-risk activity so not a problem).  This means everyone can sit all along the beaches and watch.  It's a massive local event.  Since the UK has so much coastline it seems to me that plenty of airshows could be done on the coast like this without endangering spectators and non-participants.
  8. Just an aside but next time someone comes in and tries to say that sex is defined by chromosomes here is a nice article (IMO) to throw at them:
  9. Mental and Physical Health

    :grouphug: You deserve a break! Hope those blood test results come through quickly. It sounds like you have recognised so much what you need and that determination is really good to have, as it can sometimes take some persistence until you get the drug/dose which works for you (though most people I know who have taken anti-depressants have had positive results quite quickly, so I hope this is your experience too - I'm rooting for you!). Sophie
  10. Mental and Physical Health

    I just read this blog post by a woman who realised that 'it doesn't have to be this way' and started taking anti-depressants, after which she realised that she had taken for granted that it was normal to feel how she had felt. She has bravely posted in case somebody recognises that this might be true of them too.
  11. Mental and Physical Health

    Hi Dracarya, the 'zoning out' is also a classic anxiety symptom, also known as 'depersonalisation'. Nomorepanic has a good list of the symptoms here, with layperson's explanations of what causes them (in terms of stress and the fight/flight response), and if you scroll down you will eventually get to depersonalisation, just after headaches. Lummel - thanks, I am encouraged that you are finding mindfulness useful. Maybe I will start a thread on it when I get started, because I am a bit nervous about whether I will be able to work it out on my own from books.
  12. Mental and Physical Health

    OK, maybe the explanation is more a physiological one, in that stress causes release of adrenalin, which leads to psychosomatic changes and bodily reactions such as hyperventilation, dizziness, digestive problems, muscle twitches, insomnia, palpitations etc., and also can lead to hypervigilance, with is a kind of acute attention/oversensitivity to any small thing which is a possible threat. So (guessing here) it may feel like your brain is reacting very quickly with emotional responses to situations which resemble those in which you have felt threatened in the past. However this is not because your thoughts have changed or the day to day situations are different, it's because the increased levels of adrenalin and making you more generally hypersensitive to those normal situations. Relaxation techniques such as mindfulness might help. (I am planning to try mindfulness as it's had a lot of research supporting its effectiveness - the idea is to stop living in the future quite so much and take the focus off those anxious thoughts, by focusing on the simple sensory 'here-and-now')
  13. Mental and Physical Health

    Dracarya, all kinds of people have depression/anxiety/OCD/other issues at times, and those of us who have been through it know that sharing it is the most positive thing (and many have regrets that friends/loved ones did not say anything, and used self-destructive coping methods, which you recognise and are fighting against). Besides, the more of us who share, the better it is for those who think they are alone, to realise actually this is quite normal and you can get through it (so thanks again to Sci for working so hard to send this message). Your question about CBT - yes, you are probably right that funding cuts are affecting provision. :frown5: (There may also be a shortage of practitioners) Reading what you said something struck me (seeing a possibly illusory resemblance with myself), which is that maybe the heart of it is confidence (your confidence having been badly affected by your past). You don't feel in control and your panics are about fears that other people will treat you in ways that you won't be able to deal with. Confidence doesn't come instantly, but it has made me wonder whether assertiveness training would help you. Even reading about assertiveness might help you decide on the boundaries of what you will/will not take from your mother, and prepare in advance reasonable things you can say to deal with certain contingencies. I feel as if you are very sensibly aware of what is toxic for you and that you need to protect yourself, but that you are short of coping strategies (removing yourself from the scene being your main one), particularly those which would involve you saying things which might produce conflict with others. Assertiveness is about finding that middle ground in between being too submissive (or running away/turning it on yourself) and being too aggressive (your fear of being like your father), and it sounds like that middle ground is what you might be looking for.
  14. Mental and Physical Health

    Dracarya *hugs* It does sound like GAD (with depression). Pretty sure I've recommended it before, but you might find nomorepanic a helpful support site for you, with many more people experiencing similar things. There is a specific section in the forum on social anxiety which you might find relevant. I also have a tendency towards anxiety and I too had a huge flare up in my third year at university, with panic attacks, health anxiety and huge fears related to an earlier traumatic experience (of a much more trivial nature than yours). Mine manifested slightly differently with a fear of being alone rather than a fear of being out with people, but I got awful insomnia. There was one time towards the end of the academic year where I had essays to hand in, and I was literally too afraid to sleep, stayed awake for three nights, then took a train down to London and spent a whole day having microsleeps as I travelled and walked around. At the time I was bewildered why my anxiety (which I'd suffered in the years leading up the university, but which had gradually gone away) returned at that time. It now seems obvious to me in retrospect that I must have been stressing about it being the final year of uni, even though I felt no particular stress consciously and the anxiety seemed centred on completely different things. In your case it does sound like you have unresolved issues (I guess I did too, but the fear of talking about them was too great). I have, since then, found counselling very helpful (I have not tried drugs for anxiety apart from a few times taking a minute dose of valium to deal with fear of flying). The thing to remember in counselling is that you are in charge. If you are not ready to talk about something, then don't. However you might want to select your type of counselling accordingly. The NHS would probably recommend CBT (which has had good results for people with anxiety and phobias) - the advantage of this for you is that CBT doesn't ask you to delve into your past, but simply gives you ways to change your thinking about the present. It gives you a specific procedure to go through when you start feeling the panic, which I have found very helpful (note that there can be a long waiting list for CBT - I decided not to wait, so only learnt about it from this book which helped me a lot). CBT is a fast approach, which is why it is favoured by the NHS. Many counsellors employed by charities and in universities are person-centred therapists - nearly all the counsellors I have seen have primary used this approach, in which you (the client) are very much in control, and you decide what to talk about and what it means to you. This was hard for me to get used to when I was younger (I wanted advice and solutions given to me), but much better now I am older (I realise I really am the person who knows me best, and I learn what to do partly from my reactions to what the counsellors say in response to me - which is their technique). If you want the counsellor to be more active in telling you what might be going on, then psychodynamic therapy (influenced by Freud's psychoanalytic approach) is more that type of therapy - this is the one which most emphasises your past especially your parents, so this would be jumping in the deep end. Psychodynamic therapy typically takes years of exploration. Person-centred counselling is not fast either, though in my case I have found instant relief simply by having a person to talk to (any type of counselling would work just as well for that!). Sophie ETA: When you see your doctor he/she may prescribe medication to help lift the worst of the depression, because it may be that you would be too paralysed by the depression to benefit from the therapy and maybe you need to have a certain level of wellbeing to be able to start moving ahead. Having said that, you deciding to contact a doctor and posting on here suggests that you may be ready to go straight to counselling/therapy (if that is the route you'd like to try). The decision whether or not to take medication is a very personal one (doctors may be for/against but don't let that influence you). The book and website I have linked in this post both have sections explaining about the different types of medication, and the nomorepanic forums include people discussing their own experiences of using different medications (from which the main lesson is that different things work for different people, so it might take a while to find the one which is right for you - mind you, the same can be true of counsellors).
  15. Mental and Physical Health

    To add to Sci's mental health resources list, for anyone who 'hears voices', visit: inspired by yesterday's TED talk by Eleanor Longden: