I have two options for success when it comes to women:
1) go platonic
2) lie about absolutely everything
Some of you will protest, but in the end, we all know the truth. To be with me, there are two options, be with me against Prester Bane, or be with him like the Doctors and Therapists. Some of you will protest and say there's nothing about my schizophrenia that keeps me from relationships; you are wrong in ways I've not expressed until now. I don't need help sharing what lies in his camp, they're too strong; I need to share the weak parts.
While it is true that schizophrenia in general doesn't necessarily hinder a normal relationship, the specifics of my illness do. The near impotency caused by my Prozac for OCD is unavoidable in all situations. Assuming I don't lie about circumstances, the rest break down into his camp or mine. I go to war with Prester Bane about everything, even the most minor occurrences can set off escalating hostilities. He is strong, and I am weak; he wins. My only weapon against his will is silence. I can almost always make the war of words go completely inside; at the very worst, I can make the banter silent, and the physical wounds either subtle enough to not be noticed, or propped up by some bullshit story. The war never stops, and never sleeps; When you ask me to be strong, that would be asking me to bear it alone, keeping it silent and subtle, at least for the moment.
The complete loneliness comes from my schizophrenia. If someone I love says, for example "Hey Thomas, do you want to go to the movies today?" My truth would be "yes, from every fiber in my being, I want to be with you." This is not exaggeration. I hate my solitude, but everyone I know is indifferent at best towards it. If you are in my camp, you'd say "Sure, I understand; I'll even hold your hand when you rant about the movie later because I know you're a good person, but you can't keep him silent all the time." His camp would say "OK, but I don't want to hear your crap about it; keep it to yourself." Those of you who know me know this to be truth. Goodbye is easy for him; he's strong. Goodbye is hard for me, every time I say it, I want to say "don't leave me in here with him!" However, of course, no one can love me and take that at the same time.
If a woman were to live with me in my camp, she would have to deal with me up all hours of the night screaming in argument with myself. If you'd have to ask me to be quiet -- trust me, you will -- you'd be with him, for at least the night. Even in the hospital, I had to keep it all inside. They have clinical treatments for when I'm too weak to keep my pain silent and subtle: straightjackets and quiet rooms.
I can offer complete and total devotion. I can offer my love, such that it is. Some can feel strongly for me; a few can claim to love me back, but in the end, if you stay in my camp, I'll drag you to the deep water of my solitude and drown you. Until then, you'll speak with me through him. Ask me to be strong; ask me to cope; ask me to at least appear happy; these are only met under his rule.
The strong parts are the ones that brag about my survival through eleven years. He brags about the game of Russian roulette; he brags about the pills; he both screams that he's invincible in public, and scolds me for being too weak to stop him. He's both edges of the sword of Damocles above my head: he brags about how much pain I can take, and absconds me for my suffering. I have to keep him silent: nobody knows what it's like to deal with something like him, not even other schizophrenics.
I vilify him more than I probably should. I hate him because life under his control does nothing but cause me pain. In the end, good and evil don't really matter; those are his words for humanity, not mine. My words are weak and strong, which brings me to the title of this post. All I really have is pain and toy soldiers, but even the toy soldiers become more and more his every day.
To learn more about my toy soldiers, visit my warhammer blog, Jacob's Brother
Until then, remember: I can't control any of this, I can only stay silent about it. Lies are great because I don't have to do either.
Everything on this site is copyright Thomas Jackson 2007