Hi All,

I suffer from anxiety & depression, have been in treatment for alcohol addiction. I was in a co-dependent relationship for 8 years. My Girlfriend suffered from the same aswell as dual dignoses. There was a fire at my flat, My girlfriend didn't make it, I was rescued but wish most of the time I wasn't? I keep thinking What If? Why? She was the lucky one? I will never get answers? even after 2 and a haf years, it still seems like yesterday. I have up days and down days and feel that I am here to suffer now, It was not my fault? or was it? Girlfriend self harmed, & was due to go into treatment again, but wasn't copeing, she started fire, but did not wish to die in it. A cry to attract my attention I am told. She always said she would never hurt me, & never did. but she often hurt herself. Doesn't matter how much therapy I attend, I feel I will never get peace, cant move on & dont feel I want to?. I think about her all the time.

I run a very successful website in-recovery.com that I started to join with others that had addiction related issues, & feel that is what keeps me going, It is my self awareness. Suppose I am still & always be looking for answers. Thanks for reading


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36 Replies

  • Hi. djeminel. Answers! My goodness, if we had those then there would be no problem, would there? Your past experiences have been tragic and traumatic and it is no small wonder you turned to drinking for comfort. I know; What if? Why? Could I have changed things if I had acted differently? Perhaps, but there is not a thing you can do about that now, is there?

    "The moving finger writes, and having writ, moves on, and all our piety or wit cannot remove one word of it". I do not know who wrote that but it is the very truth. We flog ourselves with doubt that can make us really ill. You get a lot of solace with your web site and it is good to know that you care for others who are going through a similar situation. Is it not perfectly natural to think about your girl friend? Of course you do, and always will but not to the point where it prevents you from going forward. This may seem hard but you have a life to live and you should try and look ahead instead of backward. I am not minimising your suffering, far from it, but you sound an intelligent person and I am sure you will understand. Very best wishes to you. jonathan.d

  • Many Thanks for your response, wise words

  • Hi Djeminel, and welcome to the site!

    Sounds to me like your suffering from related post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and what they call "survivor's guilt". The latter is VERY common in survivors of disasters in which other people died - even if the "survivor" had no control over events - like, say, a train crash. It's like - Why me? Why did I survive and the person sitting next to me not? It's very common, as i say, and it IS treatable. You say you've had therapy - I'm wondering if you've had the right kind of therapy? Might be worth talking to your GP again about that.

    I've found a website which explains it much better than I can, but can I tell you a story? During the 2nd World War, a group of German officers were trying to stop Hitler (by assassination if necessary) to bring an end to the war. One of them, who was on the "fringes" of this group, was blown up in combat, and nearly died. He lost an eye, one arm, and most of the fingers of his other hand. But - he concluded he'd been saved FOR A REASON! His name was Claus von Stauffenberg, and he's the man who planted the bomb that very nearly did kill Hitler. The plot failed, but by that time most of the resistance knew it would; they simply wanted to prove - with their lives if necessary - that not all Germans supported the monstrosities of the Nazi regime.

    It's not for me to tell you what to do, but can you perhaps think - what would your girlfriend want you to do? Surely, go on and have a happy, fulfilling, successful life? If you can't, at the moment, do it for you, can you do it as a sort of memorial for her? I think you've made a FANTASTIC start with your website - that's brilliant! :) You CAN survive this; you deserve to! Good luck!





  • I am really glad I came here, I feel a lot easier knowing that there are people out there that dont judge & offer comfort, advice and support.

    Many Thanks for your response

  • And don't forget to come back and let us know how you get on. Best wishes. jonathan.

  • Hi

    I lost my brother in a fire. He had severe learning difficulties and went away on holiday with Social Services. The staff drank alcohol and failed to get my brother out. I know what you are going through. A lot more happened around the time of his death. I was raped and was having difficulty at home with my Dad who had mental health problems. I have dreadful anxiety and awful intrusive thoughts and images in my head. My GP thinks it is OCD and PTSD. I am about to start CBT which I am hoping will help things a little more. My brain will search until it finds something to obsessively worry about and then I tie myself in knots and sometimes cant breath with anquish. Ive had help in the past from a psychologist, my gp and a counselling service. I feel a toal waste of space that here I am back to feeling insecure and unstable. I keep thinking wont ya just pull youself together, for gods sake. That actually does make it worse, I feel even more anxious. I really relate to your post and wish you well. Do update us on how you are getting on xxx

  • hi amy, I am so sorry about your brother, how tragic and so wrong.

    You are not a waste of space, it is the depression that makes you feel that way. the intrusive thoughts and images are part of it too, they are irrational, but can seem so real.

    Depression & anxiety are recognised conditions - you wouldn't tell a diabetic to pull themselves together would you?

    I find CBT has helped me and hope it helps you too.

    keep in touch,


  • Amy, I really do feel for you & wish you well. This is a great place to chat to others in similar situations, Take Care

  • Hope you are ok today Amy

  • Who would tell you it was a cry for YOUR help? how would they know? and how dare they! She was going in for treatment, she knew you both had problems, sadly she was the one responsible for what happened. Her logic was flawed and she probably never thought anyone else might get hurt - let alone you, no-one will ever know. She died and you didn't and, as others have said, you feel guilty - survivor guilt is devastating and you need counselling to help cope with it. Specialist PTSD counselling to help with the guilt and the grief.

    I commend you for starting and running your support website, when it is run by someone who has been there, the understanding is there from the start. That is why this site is so helpful.

    Please remember to leave time for yourself, you are important and need to put you first.

    You need time to heal.

    Please don't dismiss yourself and your future. It will take time but you do deserve it. Why should you suffer any more? You lost your girlfriend, you survived a tragic fire, you have anxiety & depression and yet you've gone on to set up your website to help others.

    keep in touch,


  • Thankyou Sandra,

    "To make an end, is to make a beginning. The end is where we start from" (John Thaw - 1998) Difficult, but wise words

  • OCD, PTSD, I am experiencing both, OCD can keep me awake and make want to stay in? cant even go to tesco's without worrying about how long it will take me? always worrying about what i have to do next before I have finished what I am supposed to be doing. I either eat or I dont, there is no inbetween? Dont drink anymore, take Mirtazarpine, Diazapam, & Zopiclone. feel a bit like a walking zombie sometimes? GP thinks he has me on the right balanced meds, not sure myself though. I feel the same as you sometimes i.e pull yourself together, trouble is my mind argues with me all the time? Have done CBT, it helps some of us & not others, so I wish you well with that. Thanks for your response, Keep Going xx

  • Thank you so much for sharing your stories DJ and Amy and welcome to this site. It saves me everytime I feel as if I'm going under. I think you re both very brave and will be a great help on here to a lot of people. I know the zombie feeling DJ and the Tesco thing too, and come to think of it the arguing mind as well!!!. We have each other and a nice kind word will often soften a blow.....and a trouble shared an all that : ) you will never get a " pull yourself together" though on here. More likely a shoulder to cry or lean on love and hugs xxxxxxxxxxx

  • Thanks Ella,

    You know, I have had the weekend off & am really anxious just because I feel I have wasted it? Cant stay in bed, house jobs to do, but cant decide which one is most important, OCD? Everything is tidy, wish my mind was tidy? Anyway, have a good day

    Think I will find something to do now.

  • Nothing is ever wasted DJ...LOVELY to meet you! I have just done the bare minimum today and it's gone by so fast! Yes a tidy mind would be ideal : ) you never know...it may happen xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

  • Well, Done the vacuming, and the rest, now I can start on something else. I have come to realise, what some people can do in 2 hours I can do in 1, what some people can do in an hour takes me all day sometimes? Feeling a little more at ease today, but is early yet, or is it?

    nice to chat with others in similar staite of mind xx

  • Hi guys. You cant beat a better site to come on, and get support from other people. You both dont deserve what has happened to you in both your lives. I hope you find some peace and get to the place where you both belong.......................where you dont blame yourself for the past. Keep chatting to others on here. Brill place to be. Love to you both. xx

  • Thanks Lou x

  • Hope you are still feeling at ease. x

  • Counselor tomorrow, cant wai to tell them I am getting great feedback on here, and great chatting to others, has made the weekend so much easier,

    Thanks All

  • I keep telling my partner about this site. He is suffering from it and everyone has helped me deal with him having anxiety. Glad you have had a weekend that has been easier for you. Sure it must make a little bit of a difference for you. Hope it goes well for you at counselling. x

  • Thanks Lou, Hope your partner gets help, This is a great place to share, Have a good week x

  • Thank you all so much, what lovely responses. I have a daughter with the middle name Ella, realy pretty name :-) I randomly clicked on the link for this site from Facebook and I am really glad I did. DJ, it is a nice feeling knowing you are about to go talk to someone who might understand and help. I hope when you see them, it brings a sense of calm and relief. My Psychologist, Guy, was so good for that. I could say anything to him and he'd not think it strange, well perhaps he would, but not judge. Ive had a lack of sound voices in my mind and the few people that have spent time talking to me and reasoning has really helped the inner me with problem solving in day to day life. I know that decisions I make are really moulded from people like Guy and my old GP who has retired. My Mum has been there for me in one way but because of the dreadful time she had with my Dad and trying to do the best for my brother, there was never someone that I could learn from that everything would be ok because actually Dad never gave it a chance to be ok. He made things so unstable. I hope my children learn good coping skills from me! Ive done so much hoovering today it is silly. Hoovered the whole house! Had friends over with two toddlers and from the time they came in the door I felt the need to start sweeping and putting away lol. Always think if i start fussing my friend will think I am rude and unaccomodating to her children but it really does get quite crazy :-/ I hate bits on the carpets!! Thanks again everyone for such a lovely welcome! I am looking forward to logging in and chatting with everyone regularly xxx

  • dito with Lou there Amy, My hoover has its own mind? gets annoyed if I dont feed it everyday with electricity? I will visit here tomorrow nite with an update, Take care All

  • Amylou you have a lot of strength. Coming on here and telling us all about what has happened takes a lot of strength and courage. Your children will learn a lot from you. No-one has any right to judge you and why should they. You keep your head high as you are a inspiration. You are still fighting and wont be beaten.

    I sound so much like a stuck record but this place is great. Helps a lot. Keep with the blogs so we know how you are getting on.

    Keep going and show people what a fighter you are.

    Big hugs.

    Lou. x

  • Thank you Lou xx really nice of you to say. I just wondered how you got on DJ seeing your therapist yesterday? Hope everything went well. I have an interview next Tuesday and it is for a company with what you might call extreme religious views. They have a uniform for women to prohibit the showing of any skin on legs and chest area. It involves wearing a skirt and I HATE skirts. I used to wear two pairs of underwear because It felt safer. I know that sounds crazy. Anyway, I've managed to get used to one pair and its all ok but the thoughts of a skirt makes me sick. The only trouble is the hours suit me just great. I cant even wear trousers to the interview as trousers show definition of the bum :-/ Not sure what religion it is but It all seems a bit strange to me :-/ What does everyone think, would you go? xx

  • Hi Amy,

    Counsellor went ok? i.e watch this space? sorry to sound vague, we have just done the introductions and scratched the surface,

    As for you job, I would say, If the job is not going to cause you stress or anxiety & you think it will make you happy, then give it a go. Must say, there is no way i would wear a skirt? but my reasons are totally justified lol, plus it's cold at present?

    Good luck & thanks for your response

  • ;-) That is good, I started seeing a Dr last month and it went well. Am due to see her again in a few weeks. Ive decided not to go for the religious company. Hate skirts and do not like religion so it was never going anywhere. Have an offer for January and going to try and jiggle the hours slightly. My decision making skills are dreadful. The words "what do you think" are words I constantly speak. Excuse my random questions! No problems! Take care xx

  • Hope it goes well for you x

  • Hey guys. i was wondering how you had got on DJ, glad you posted on here. Hope you are ok.

    Amylou you dont sound crazy at all. You got to do what makes you feel at ease. I dont like skirts, i am the one who is at a christmas party wearing trousers, jeans while all the other females wear dresses and christmas clobber. As long i am comfy thats all that matters, and skirts and dresses dont do that for me.

    Take care the both of you. xx

  • Hi Lou,

    All went ok, just scratched the surface, lots more work to do? Hope you are well x

  • I am ok thanks. Keep us posted on how you are getting on. Hope you have a good weekend, and are able to get some chill time. x

  • Hello, your story is so tragic and my heart goes out to you, I too have had a tragedy in my life and it affected me deeply. I suffered severe depression and anxiety and hated myself so much for not saving my loved one, but at the same time it was a relief because when he was alive he brought me nothing but pain. I have met many people in my life suffering from something or another and I've come to the conclusion that it's not how different we are, it's more like how many people suffer the same things through their life. We all have obstacles to get over and I have come to the conclusion that no one can help us but ourselves and a few very close and loving friends.....people who understand us, people who have been through similar things, people who love us unconditionally no matter what. If someone can love you for who you are then maybe you can put the past behind you and begin again. We are all deserving love, no matter what we have been through, no matter what we have done. Your girlfriend wouldn't want you to live in misery, if she self-harmed then she must have been so sad and desperate, it wasn't your fault, you were put in her life to help her through, to give her a few extra years of life that she may not have had if you hadn't come along. She is now set free from her sadness, as is my loved one......there is nothing we can do about the past, we can go over and over and over it time and time again but it doesn't bring them back. I still get bouts of anxiety and depression, but they are very mild these days, I have learned to take a deep breath and keep going. I found true love in the end, someone who adored me for me, please don't give up on life, love yourself, forgive yourself, allow yourself to be loved again, love again like there is no tomorrow, take one step at a time and try and be free of this turmoil, you can do it......I did x

  • Hi Christia,

    Thankyou so much for your comments. I am seeing a counselor now who is saying similar things to me. I do get moments when I think I should move on & meet someone else, but feel a sense of loyalty. I know she would want me to move on now. I choose to live in the moment, I believe what will happen will be. I think get christmas over & see what next year brings.

    Thanks again, and good luck to you, i wish you hapiness.


  • Hello, I am so glad that I have given you words of comfort, I know exactly how it feels to live in the past and not move forward, you kinda feel trapped and can't get that person out of your mind.....you feel, as you said, disloyal and feel like you shouldn't be happy and move on. I had relationships after and always talked about my past, it was no good, it didn't help the relationships and there was jealousy. You will move on when you're ready and let go of the past, don't feel guilty for trying to find happiness, try not to let guilt spoil what you could have, we all deserve love and happiness, we mustn't blame ourselves for what other people do. Christmas time is a difficult time to think of loved ones, but that hardly goes away. We can keep saying, I'll get over this, I'll get over that, but when the time is right, it is right. I wish you much happiness and hope there is someone out there who will not bring you any more pain. People can give you pain, surround yourself with lovely friends who are stable and avoid the ones who really don't care. This is a lesson I have learned, only have people around you who genuinely love and care for you, who don't blame you. I had a member of my own family only a few weeks ago blame me for what happened many years ago, I don't need that thrown in my face, they didn't really know what went on. So even with some family members I keep my distance, I don't have to be with people who drag me down when coping with life is hard enough and all I want is peace.

    Have a lovely Christmas and don't be afraid to be happy and love life, go and find a lovely companion and stop feeling guilty, life really is too short to be at home worrying.

    Peace to you at Xmas and good luck in 2013 xx

  • Many Thanks,

    Dito, you have a great time & New year xx

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