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I can't help but look miserable Watch

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    For the past year or two, my mom has constantly been telling me that I look like a misery. It's not that I actually am miserable, I just look it, apparently. I guess it started a couple of years ago when my dog died, and I was very close to her. In a strange way, we had a really special bond and understanding and even now I still get flashbacks of the last time I saw her, and how she gripped her nails into my jumper to try to hold onto me for one last time. I was distraught and also shocked about my dog's death, and the day after, my nan was rushed into hospital following a weird experience whilst shopping. It started with fairly uncomplicated problems, but she was in hospital for almost 13 weeks, and by the end they discovered that she had aortic valve stenosis, which is the narrowing of the aortic valve. Although it was with her from birth, it was believed that shock from my dog's death (my nan looked after my dog - she was just as much her's as she was mine) had triggered the start of this stenosis. It was a really horrible period for everyone involved, and at the time I was in my AS year. I had always lived with my nan during the week whilst my mom was busy at work, and my nan was one of my closest friends, as we had such a great deal of things in common. When my nan was in hospital, I stayed at my mom's house, and we visited the hospital most nights and I stayed up to do work until 1-2am in the morning. The stress got to me but I tried to block it out. A couple of months later, I developed a tumour that one doctor thought might be cancer. My mom stopped talking to me during the period between when I saw the doctor and when I had the ultrasound to identify the tumour, and I felt completely alone. The thing is, I wasn't even bothered about the tumour, I was just in a state of detachment from everyone around me, in an effort to block it all out. It turned out that my tumour was benign and it may have been caused by stress. A few weeks later, my AS exams came around, and I sat them, expecting to fail as I wasn't sure whether nerves would overcome me, but I came out with 5 As. It wasn't until I started my 2nd year of college that my horrible experiences of the previous year came back to haunt me. I became quite aloof and I became fixated with my weight. I was never fat (or even average for that matter) but I used my weight as a means to distract myself from everything else. Within a few months, I was around the 6 stone mark, my periods had stopped as a result of being pretty underweight for my age and height, and I had no grip on reality. My doctor told me to have a high calorie intake until I got to a healthy weight and my periods started again. During this time, my mom thought that she was seriously ill because she said she had symptoms of something or other, though she didn't really go into it, and she had a bit of a nervous breakdown. She stayed at my nan's for a bit and my nan helped her to recover. I became a nervous wreck in that year and started a job over the summer, and one of the managers told me that I made her feel physically uncomfortable to be around, which was a bit mean but probably true. I quit that job after a while because I just couldn't take the whole sense of fakeness; to the customers I was a friendly, happy girl who loved my job, but inside I felt lost and broken and I didn't really have anyone to talk to. I messed up my A2s and ended up with A*AAB, which was okay but a massive drop from my predicted grades, though I still got into my uni of choice and got a £2000 scholarship, which was motivating. I continued living with my nan for the first week of uni, but then realised that it was too far for me to travel each day, so I moved into accommodation near the uni. I saw my nan frequently (most weekends) and we spoke on the phone every day, but it wasn't until around Christmas when I realised how ill she was. She followed me up the stairs to talk to me and she was incredibly out of breath, and it was so upsetting to see her go from a lively pensioner to a woman who was still young in mind and spirit but was trapped in a rapidly deteriorating body. She decided to have major surgery at the end of April this year - an aortic valve replacement - and she was aware of the risks but wanted to have life again. She died in early May, following complications during surgery where she nearly bled to death, and spent far more time in intensive care than was expected. However, the day before she died, the nurses said she was making great progress (she looked better) and that they would move her to a local hospital soon so she could recover there. The next morning, we expected the hospital to inform us that she was being moved to a local hospital, but instead they told us that she had suffered an attack of some kind (suspected to be a pulmonary embolism) and by the time we got there, she had passed away. I went in to see her lying there, dead, and the image keeps haunting me. I was upset but strong for the first couple of weeks and I was no comfort at all to my grieving mother. I just wanted to try to ignore reality, like I had done before. The reality has hit me now, and has been like this for about a month, but now my mom has stopped grieving as much and the only person I have to turn to is my boyfriend, who was there for me throughout this whole period, but I don't want to worry him all of the time. Sometimes I woke him in the night and couldn't control how upset I was, and I'd stay up and he'd comfort me but I don't want to keep doing this because it's not fair on him. He can see that I'm not miserable and that I'm just sad and am always trying to hold in my emotions. Sometimes I genuinely think that I look happy but my mom always shouts at me for looking like a misery, and gets annoyed that she has to look at my miserable face. I'm not miserable; in a way I'm relieved that my nan's death was fairly painless and she didn't expect it, but obviously being so close to her means that I have lost someone very special. I got into cosplay last year and have continued to do it throughout early 2014, though not recently because of everything that has happened. I did it because a) I love anime and videogames, and b) it took my mind off my problems and enabled me to become someone else, even if it was just for a short time. I got a lot of good feedback on my cosplays, particularly my most recent one (Elizabeth from Bioshock Infinite), but my mom saw the photos and constantly tells me how horrible I look in all of them and how I am bad at cosplaying and how I anger her to look at. She also complains about my hair because I just leave it or straighten it, and she says it does nothing for my facial features and that I take no pride in my appearance. I guess what she says is true, but I'm still mourning my nan and my dog, and trying to maintain emotionally stable, which I struggle with sometimes. The last thing on my list is what my hair looks like. My mom also tells me that I am really snappy and get nasty with her. I genuinely don't try to but she's very intolerant of my feelings and she just interprets the way I speak as being in a manner of anger or sarcasm. I know that she is still really upset but she takes it out on me rather than addressing the real issue, and in my current state of mind I really don't want people criticising me. I had a panic attack last week and the week before and it's hard for me right now. Okay, so maybe I look miserable, and I don't want to look that way anymore. Even if I feel bad inside, I want my mom to be happy with how I look externally, but even when I try to smile, I still look miserable and "pathetic", as my mom calls me. Does anyone have any advice?

    Does she know what's going on? Have you been diagnosed with depression?
    Perhaps if she knew you had depression she will be nor supportive and realise it's an illness and it's not your fault. Remember you are going through a lot right now loosing your nan, Uni (I presume) and your doggy


    I think your mother is still grieving

    one of the managers told me that I made her feel physically uncomfortable to be around - why?

    RIP grandma

    See your GP for help
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Updated: July 6, 2014
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