I live in boxes. Not literal boxes, but metaphoric ones. One box -- the box that I currently occupy -- abuts two other boxes: the box that I just evacuated, and the box that I will occupy next. I don't know precisely when I will occupy my next box, and this fills me with a sense of despair, and a sense of panic. I know that I will occupy my next box tomorrow, in inappropriately twelve hours, when my family returns to the apartment.
When my wife announces that she is going to the store, I want her to leave, then, at that moment. Maybe I'm reading a book, or watching television, or doing the dishes, or petting the dog, but the moment that she announces her impending departure, I am stuck in time, at a boundary. I'm not in _this_ box, and I'm not in the next.
That might not seem like much of a problem, but I'm 51 years old, and this has plagued me all of my life. Does anyone else experience this? If so, is there a name for it?
Thanks in advance.
I'm no psychiatrist, I'm afraid, but it does sound to me like a mild form of obsessive compulsive disorder.
So long as you and your family can live with it, I really wouldn't worry too much.
Then again, I am not trained in this field, hopefully someone will come along who is, or can relate.
I am sometimes obsessive compulsive. I've been known to check that the door is locked a dozen times before going to bed, but I usually manage it. Weeks or months pass in which I only check it once or twice.
Thanks for your comment.
I'm not a psychiatrist either, but I have studied psychology and have worked in the mental health field. I would have to agree with IzzyM. It sounds like it could be obsessive compulsive disorder. If the preoccupation with being in a box, as you call it, causes a lot of anxiety, then you may want to seek counseling to overcome the uneasiness with being in transitional states. Some cognitive behavioral counseling probably could help you accept each moment as it is for what it is.
I haven't an answer, yet I think that it is interesting. Empathetic, sharing, I have a similar dilemma. I live on planes. They are multi-dimensional similar to a 3-D chess board. Having read your work, though not sure of occupation, seems to me you are describing compartmentalizing. Smart thinking, used by programmers.
Definitely, in my view for this discussion, a description of information processing - method of coping too. I am not a professional, so heed I offer only speculation. I know my key for the jumping from plane to plane, though they are at times not 2-D and are curved planes, and are at times a mystery, indeed.
Through the many years of therapy, research, etc. I recognize that the dilemma surrounding me is anxiety. The anxiety stems from an experience with amnesia at 24. Recall of memory going back to about 17 is more clear today. Yet, memory before that is confusing. I memorized pictures, stole memories from family and friends, yet run into a hidden recall.
Causing great dissonance, inability to synthesize that new information, anxiety is formed, immensely. Having spent hundreds of dollars on phone calls to affirm a recalled memory, I seek an answer to the anxiety of dissonance. (See Freud, and his daughter Anna's treatise on the 34 defense mechanisms used for dissonance.)
Writing of one of those adventures with a hub about Meeting My Nemesis, I attempted to portray the loss of memory with the emotion created with rape seeking understanding. The dissonance created in the story is resolved with forgiveness being the key.
My dilemma of anxiety portrayed by dissonance for that adventure is resolved with metaphorically accepting forgiveness from an allegorical character or image. The dissonance formed from not trusting my memory or ability to recall the unconfirmed memory with continuity requires resolve. Like the Greek gods of ancient time or the mystifying bicameral mind of science I allow imagination to present me with a means of acceptance, which allows 'self' to function within normalcy.
I have wandered far and wide, not knowing if this insight of 'self' helps. I think likeness at times allows for acceptance and belonging. As writers, both fiction and non-fiction we seek answers with a desire to share - teach while desiring confirmation or affirmation. Like the song says, "the answer my friend is blowing in the wind."
My brotheI 'm here to tell ya' straight up that if your boxes include thoughts of harimng yourself or another individual...then go get help NOW. You will not find the help you need here.
However, I am here to tell you that you are not alone no matter what your boxes may be. It'a a BIG world my friend!
I too have boxes becuse boxes are a part of life and I used to let them control me...until I went inside the boxes and learned there are nothing more than that..just boxes.
Chasuk, ther are MANY boxes we will encounter in this game we call life and for me, I could have never had the strength to go deep inside those boxes w/o God.
I am a thug from the streets and have endured enough pain in my 45yrs that would make you cringe!
But that does not mean a thug conquer his demons and succeed in the game of life.
I'm here for you my brotha...just ask.
I wish you the best.
I'm peace-loving, both towards myself and others, but thanks for the kind words. :-)
Sounds like a bit of co-dependency to me. You're ok when people are around but lost and immobile when they're not around.
I'm a medically-diagnosed OCD'er, and it definitely sounds like you've got a bit of it if anything. Medical conditions aside, I feel and do the exact same thing. I don't understand why. When I lived at home with my mother, I felt caged to two rooms, but as soon as she stated she was leaving I felt this weight lift to do as I please. Now I live with two friends (and I love it, don't get me wrong) and the whole "living in boxes" thing has sort of lifted for the most part, but I still feel caged none-the-less. When they're gone to class or work, I feel free again. I don't think there's really anything to do about it. Perhaps we're just introverts?
I am a social worker but therapist by trade, and you need to see a professional in order to determine a diagnosis. You do not provide enough information to make a diagnostic impression. There are certain symptoms we look for before making a diagnostic impression of OCD. And even when you identify the symptoms, it is necessary to determine if it is obsessive compulsion disorder or obsessive compulsion personality disorder. It is important to distinguish the two as one is an axis one and one is an axis two diagnosis.
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