Dear Miss Cathy,
Hi. It’s Beth. Yes, it’s Beth, who else would be writing you this letter? I want to tell you that Blake and I are doing just fine, but there are a few things I’m worried about. I have heard you say things like that I am possessive if Blake, which isn’t true, and that I’m a sick and dangerous person, which I’m not either. I have some myths and facts about mental health issues to share, and I need to share these things on account of what I heard Blake say you said about me. I”m trying to lay out the facts. So here goes:
1. Someone with mental illness is just as likely to commit a crime as anyone else, but the ones you see in the headlines like James Holmes are sick and dangerous guys who get off their meds. He’s now on trial for multiple murder counts in Aurora.
2. Mentally ill people who are properly diagnosed and treated have less of a chance of going to jail or being hospitalized for anything. That’s surprising. One dollar spent on mental health treatment, behavioral health stuff like counseling and such, is $7 less a taxpayer is paying to put the guy in prison.
3. Not all mentally ill people are sex offenders. I’m not, at least.
4. Mental illness is more common than diabetes and heart disease. More than two thirds of America’s citizenry are mentally ill or on something. Just ask your friends, “What are you doing today?” At some point, they may bring up some OTC medication they’re on, a prescription they’re on, etc. Hey, my dad takes a heartburn med too, and I heard that a lot of other people do. We Americans are pretty sad. That’s a fact. A lot of us are depressed, and half the problem is fitness, but sometimes the chemical imbalance in the brain is not helped a lot by trauma.
What I’m really asking is that I be included in the family. I want a more inclusive family unit where everyone can talk to everyone else, no matter what the problem is, without being judged for being obsessive or ill in any way. My family would never let anyone talk to me because of obsessions they deemed inappropriate and the worst thing is that they thought I was in obsession when I was in love. They were clearly not comfortable with my desires, not comfortable with a normal daughter. They wanted the cute, sweet, cuddly little pet dog instead of a daughter. My parents did not want me dating or having a relationship with anyone, and yet they claim they want me to have a man who treats me right. What is the definition of “treat me right?” Give me stuff, according to Dad. “Where’s the ring?” people ask as they peruse my Facebook, wondering where Blake’s engagement ring for me is? I have to embarrassingly say, in one way or another, “We can’t afford the rings.” what is that? Blake can’t afford the ring because he doesn’t see his check. HE never sees it, and that’s another need. I want a man who can buy me an engagement ring, but I don’t want to push Blake to do it now. Blake should have needs too. He should be able to save up some money in a bank, not have to use it for any “necessities”, and be able to purchase a pearl engagement ring for me. No diamonds allowed, and that’s because the diamond is overrated and is some frenemy of mine’s birthstone. Don’t ask me further, please.
I really want a family who won’t do injustice to my talents, won’t make me look savant, won’t expect me to perform for them like a show dog. I’m not one of my friend’s dogs, and she has lots of them all about. The dogs run about the yard, act like … dogs, no less. You have dogs, right? So you play with them, right? I’d play with mine if I had any. Blake thinks he’s a dog. Ha ha. I don’t know about that, but Blake is just as playful as any dog, but he’s not a dog. A question that comes between us is, “What are you barking about?” I always say, “Nothing, what are you barking about?” Blake is the sweetest thing in the world, but I’m not his property. The way my dad defines dating relationships is that the man buys a girl food, flowers, and a ring. Well, again, I say this, let Blake save money and buy the ring. I won’t expect any more from him except for the ring, but I want some form of physical contact. If we don’t have physical contact, where’s the “relationship?” Mental illness should not dictate what happens between me and Blake.
My needs don’t exactly require a ring. I don’t think the wedding will happen in a church, but I want you to support the marriage because Blake is a grown man and can make his own decisions. I know that scares you, but it scared my parents enough for them to take rights away from me. I’m not gonna tolerate such bull from them. I don’t tolerate any bullcrap from anyone at this point. Blake is sweet enough not to do that either.
Lastly, I want you to define the dating relationship. Yes, Blake and I are dating, in this way. Marriage is love. Christ is love. God is love, and all who live in love live in God. You might think me nuts to write this, but Christ is love. Blake loves Christ, and that’s why we’re together. I prayed on this letter, and there it is. I prayed on writing this letter to you, and hope that you are going to be ok.
I realize you’re a busy woman, and it helps with some of the mental stuff you yourself are going through. I realize Chad was murdered, and I wish I could have stopped it. If I could, I’d wring Heather by the neck and hang her on the laundry line for good. Either that or me and Chad should’ve thrown the girl out the window. I could call her worse, but alas, I don’t wanna write something like this in a blog. Heather murdered your son because she was not properly diagnosed and treated. Boy, wish we humans had a diagnostic tool inside our heads that allowed us to diagnose mental problems before they got started. Alas, however, Heather did not. Yes, she seemed nice, but I’m sorry to say that if she’d been to counseling, and … uh, substance abuse issues, and rehab, maybe this wouldn’t have happened. I am lucky that I have professional help, but right now, I have no period which is unusual for a 28-year-old woman to have. Maybe it could’ve been psychological from my ex being stupid and saying mean stuff about me and “period blood.” Mr. “O. oughta be ground into hot dog meat for that one, and if he doesn’t stop starting bullcrap and stirring acid soup, don’t worry. He’ll be investigated by a police department and found guilty of a crime he did indeed commit. Cathy, I empathize with you. So let me ask: Why don’t you empathize with me? You yourself have PTSD and depression, and you have hard sleepless nights wondering what could I have done! I realize all this, and it’s all gonna be ok. Look, if you want to look at me for a second, do so. I’m not sick and dangerous. I’m not possessive. I don’t define relationships with material shit. Like rings, bracelets, dresses, or even the wedding of the century. It’s all a matter of time before Blake and I have to pack our stuff and get married somewhere, whether in Arizona or Colorado, and it won’t be soon, but it must be sooner rather than later when I’m forty, unable to carry, and so on. Cathy, you’re lucky you have a son. You’re so lucky you have Joe. And Joe is lucky he has you. AT least the two of you sleep in the same bed. Do you know how many times I wished Blake were in my bed? Lots of times. I slept with the wrong men, and now, I’m regretting it. My ex calls me evil and says I associate with guys who have STD’s. Jason Owens said my ex, Deq, had STD’s. That’s not true at all. Deq is perfectly fine, except for blindness. Deq is fine. And he and Blake and I are still talking whether by Skype or other means. Miss Cathy, I want you to see that I am a kind person, and that I am NOT sick or dangerous. I need to see Blake. I’ve missed him enough. Just think this over, ok? Don’t worry, everything will be ok.
Dear Miss Cathy,