I need to register with a dentist. I’ve been putting it off for months – why?
In a rare moment of angry honesty, my father told me that if other people mistreated me and my health the way I do to myself he’d want to kill them. I do take a lot of risks with my body, I’m still ambivlent about having this meat puppet to lug around. I think this lack of self-care serves several purposes.
Firstly, it’s an innefective cry for help. I want to say I’m not coping, I still feel overwhelmed and maybe if I fuck myself up in these little non-commital ways people might notice and ask me what’s wrong, even offer help. Of course, this is stupid. I’ve never been able to talk about my feelings before and even if they do notice my lack of self care I just look slovenly, not in need of help.
Secondly, it’s just good old masochism. I will leap down stairs and cross the road without looking and sew my own wounds (badly) and eat pills like pac man and not use my inhaler when I need it and yes, restrict my food intake because I am Quite Angry At Myself yet still won’t commit to acts of all out violence against my person.
Thirdly, it allows me to keep up my pretense to myself that I am an unassailable island. If I don’t need to interact with other people – dentists for example – and especially if I don’t have to let them do things to my body, like open my mouth and look at my teeth (oh, the invasive horror!) then I can keep my boundaries intact, my sense of self unthreatened. I am very, very sensitive about my boundaries and have a strong need to be alone and self-sufficient.
Meanwhile I keep up my Cold War against my corporeal self, believing that fatal blood poisoning from an untreated dental abcess would be just what I deserve/just what I want. It’s all very shameful and frustrating.