Can't handle anything anymore

Hi there, first time posting here. I figured I’d try something new.

About a month ago I got out of a really awful, manipulative relationship. It was textbook love-bombing, so I felt perfectly secure in the moment, but eventually a friend of mine (we’ll call her Sam) showed me how many strings he was pulling behind the scenes and snapped me out of it. You may think I’m exaggerating, but another friend is convinced I cheated on him, which I never did, and we’re still distant because of that lie. It seems ever since then everything has gone so incredibly downhill.

First was work. All of a sudden, I have a ton of new responsibilities at work, but my boss is really bad at actually telling me what they are and how to do them. This means that my boss and my coworkers will, out of the blue, ask me where something is or why something hasn’t been done, when I had no idea I had to do it in the first place. I’m scared to go to work or to check my work email in case someone else is annoyed at me for not doing something I didn’t know about.

Second was school. I’m at university and all of this has had a tangible impact on my grades. I’m really into my major (computer science) and decided to throw myself into my studies after the breakup. As a result I’m burnt out, tired all the time, and actually behind as at some point I was so tired I started skipping classes. A lot of my classes this term have big projects and I haven’t started any of them. The usual impostor syndrome is going strong too, of course. I’m also starting to suspect I have ADHD or something related (I’ve noticed that, for as long as I can remember, a ton of ADHD-associated traits have caused me problems) and the effects of executive dysfunction are really starting to show.

Third was putting all of this on my friends. I used to have a problem with self-harm and was even clean for two years until all of this started happening. I told Sam about it, because she’s also struggled with SH, and she told me to talk to her instead of doing it in the future. Problem is, over the last month, I’ve talked to her (and other friends) about being stressed about 10x more than I’ve talked to her about other stuff, which makes me feel ridiculously guilty. I’ve listened to the stuff she has going on too, but eventually encouraged her to speak to a therapist because I didn’t have enough knowledge to properly help her out. Now I’m worried Sam thinks I’m a hypocrite for “using” her as a wall to bounce my complaints off of instead of seeing a therapist of my own. I would love to, but can’t actually afford one.

Fourth was the mouse. I live with three roommates and one of them saw a mouse in our living room. The manager of our building wants to move us elsewhere so they can do pest control, but I don’t have the time or mental fortitude to pack up all my things (they want everything, and I mean EVERYTHING gone) and move. Oh, and the mouse is also kind of horrifying by itself. It’s not that huge in the grand scheme of things, but it was the catalyst for this most recent breakdown so I figured I’d mention it.

And fifth, the worst part (at least to me): all of this has made me want to vent to my ex. He was there for me through so many panic attacks and breakdowns, and I know he would listen even now. He was always the best listener and even just talking to him felt like a soothing balm over all my problems, so you can understand the temptation. The issue there would be that he’d listen, be sugar-sweet supportive, and then use all of it to try and lure me back or to humiliate me with my friends and family, just like he’s done in the past. I know it’s not an option and I hate myself for wanting to rely on him despite all the progress I’ve made in the last month.

All of these things combined have made it unbearable to wake up every day. I’m writing this after a day of not doing anything and feeling incredibly guilty about it, because I have tons of projects, work, and exams coming up, but everything feels so heavy and I just can’t get myself to start. When everything is too much and you don’t even have mental space to plan your next step, how are you supposed to move forward?

If you’ve made it this far, thank you very much for reading!


Hi friend!

I don’t think you’re over exaggerating at all. I understand a lot of these struggles, I always relate by saying “same ocean, different boat” when it comes to things like these. I recently myself got out of a toxic relationship, but my partner was kind of the opposite of this. With the lovebombing tendencies, would you feel comfortable with explaining more? What kind of strings was your friend pulling behind the scene? I’m sorry to hear you’re going through this, added with the accusations and assumptions being thrown around by people that shouldn’t even be involved with your affairs— I can see how hard it’s been for you to feel like you’re not being heard. It’s frustrating. I want you to know there is a hotline you can call/text 24/7 called that provide you support through relationship struggles, and give resources and advice. They talk to you much like counselors do and help challenge you to look inside yourself and help build healthier friendships and boundaries.

I understand your work struggles. It’s been the same for me as well, and it’s really difficult when you feel in the back of your mind you’re walking a tightrope. I think that possibly going to your supervisor with these feelings may help. Just be honest and let them know that you’re feeling confused and out of the loop. It’s not fair to you to be anxious all the time and be playing 20 Questions at work all the time.

As an IT tech, I definitely understand how hard Computer Science classes are just on their own, so I can only fathom how they are with everything you have going on. Have you confronted to your academics advisor about this? Regarding ADHD… I would get that looked at by a professional as soon as possible. I struggle highly from Executive Dysfunction from mine, and I hope that if you can figure out even if it’s something else, you can get proper recommendations and help through your Academics Advisor, I waited too late for mine when I needed it the most.

I commend you for staying clean from harming for two years— relapse isn’t always a bad thing. People argue that it’s going to happen, it’s part of recovery. I don’t think it’s right for your friend to call you a hypocrite. If you’re ever in a feeling of overwhelming anxiety where you feel like you can’t control a situation, crisis lines aren’t just for the direst situations. I’ve contacted them plenty of times about my relationships and how hard it’s hit me. I would suggest this for if you cannot afford a therapist. HeartSupport does offer one free week of BetterHelp, but it does ask for card information like a free trial does. It’s perfectly natural to tell someone you gave as much as you could, but you don’t know what to say / don’t have the energy to be able to help. I refer to the spoon theory much when I feel like this. It’s taken a lot for me to realize that we have to take care of ourselves first, before we can expend all this energy on others. Or you do find yourself with this burnout. You did your best by referring her to a therapist, and you’re not a hypocrite for doing that. I’m glad to see you cared for her enough to show her the way to hopefully she’ll get started for helping herself.

Sometimes, the smallest things can have the biggest effect on a breakdown. I’ve seen a Tiktok where someone’s friend was like “Really? You broke up with him over a HOTDOG?” As silly as it sounds, it was probably the straw that broke the camel’s back, but also the easiest way out of all the situations her ex put her in to finally say she was done. And moving your stuff? Probably also causing a lot of executive dysfunction. I’m like that myself with my room, my aunts been getting extremely hard with me on my own room. I actually was supposed to start overhauling my own stuff, but I got hit with a bad infection that’s messing with my back— unfortunately I got lucky. I would suggest start with one corner, and if you have things you don’t know if you want to save or keep, ask yourself the importance of the item now, in a year, or maybe even five years. Not suggesting you’re a hoarder, but I watch the show Hoarders all the time, and I look up their ways on how to organize a space. I’m sorry you guys have to pack up for pest control. Would your roommates be able to help?

I also feel you with wanting to vent back to your ex. I’m in my own wave of emotions with my own, but it sounds like your ex truly is manipulative, and the past experiences you’ve had with him trying to comfort you makes you feel like you’ll get the comfort and it ‘might’ make you feel better— even if it’s fleeting and horrible again afterwards. I can find you some worksheets over getting losing someone if you’d like. It’s grief processing for both loved ones that have passed and past relationships. I would encourage again that you do now have a hotline at your disposal that can help support you through this breakup you’re in.

It sounds like you’re going through an extreme bout of Apathy like I am, and god does it suck. Especially when you feel like no one believes you. My own family didn’t know about my relationship, but I feel for you being so humiliated with your ex to your own family. I think coming here was a good first step to your question. Would possibly breaking down your tasks into a game plan something you’d be willing to look over? Maybe we can start there. I’m not sure about your work situation, but could it be possible for you to take some days off, or take some less hours to focus on you? We can look to see if you can get some FMLA time off for a mental health break. I ask that you take care of yourself the best you can, because your mental health can have a really bad toll on your physical health. Trust me, unfortunately I know myself. :smiling_face_with_tear:

It’s nice to meet you, and I’d love if you keep me updated and let me know if you’d like to go through anything I’ve discussed with you. I’m rooting for you, hun! :heart:


From: Mamadien

Lemongrass, welcome to Heart Support friend. I’m glad you found us and thank you for sharing what is happening in your life. It’s really good that you have had the strength to end an abusive relationship. That had to be hard and I’m glad you are staying strong there. There is so much you have going on in your life that you sound overwhelmed, and rightfully so. It’s hard to set priorities when they are all priorities and to then find the energy to work on each one is tough. You do need people to talk to and support you. I’m glad you have friends to help with this. Does your university have any campus services or counseling services available as part of your being a student there? Another thought is finding a peer to peer support group perhaps so that you have another place to talk and find support. My concern for you is that you back to sh. Please consider that a sign that you should reach out for more help than you currently have. But as always - you are welcome here day or night to post and talk about what is happening in your life. We’re here to listen and support you always. Please let us know how you are doing.


From: Lisalovesfeathers

Hi Friend, Welcome to Heart Support, very nice to meet you. Goodness you are carrying a huge bag of stress around with you aren’t you? I am sorry you are in this situation. Of course we are not here because we can fix them but as people looking in you are clearly not being treated fairly at work and it might be an idea to go to authority and talk about how you are feeling, there are rules of conduct even when it comes to training and you deserve to be trained properly so that you know what you are doing and when. If something is done incorrectly because you were given the wrong details, inform your boss, peope have no right to treat you poorly, I am not surprised this has had an effect on your grades, upset is bound to have an effect on grades at any time in your schooling, try to calm down, breathe, work out how to deal with work and then you can get back into your studies and I have no doubt you will do well. As for your self harming, I think you and I know that hurting yourself is not the answer. I have been there myself and its momentary and does not help you, you deserve better than that my friend. Please go and talk to your doctor and find so real help so you are not spending your time damaging youself.
I want you to know that you have love and support here always and you can write here as often as you like. You are a very special person who is valued and loved. Lisa x



Hello Friend, welcome to Heart Support and thank you for posting and trusting us. I wanted to suggest contacting Campus Services if you are in the USA, they might be able to help you with your school stuff. The offer lots of resources that you can take advantage of. With work, I feel like you might need to either have a meeting with your boss and explain the issue to them. Or, if you don’t think that will make an impact, you can go to their boss or if you have a Human Recourses office, you could contact them for advice on how to handle it. It’s not ok for them to expect you to know how to do your job without being trained. With regards to your ex, I would highly recommend that you avoid him and find a friend who wants nothing but the best for you and who you trust to confide in. Or looking more into some type of therapy. Some states have laws that allow you full coverage on mental health treatment if you have insurance, for example. I hope things get better for you and please keep coming back to post for support. You matter! ~Mystrose


Hi lemongrass,
welcome to Heart Support.Thank you a lot for sharing.
i don’t know where you are from and university can be anywhere. in some countries your insurance covers the
first appointment, also it is time near to speak to a therapist. that can might help you.
at university are there some communities where you can find help ? or find a place for you ? maybe a self help
group, a peer support group is located near you ? might have a look into that direction too.
it helps a lot to speak about your worries and share them. also to hear others, to hear stories from people sometimes can give you another perspective on things that are happening.
with your work situation, you should speak out about that. communicate honestly and explain yourself. how can they expect you to do things, when you are not knowing how everything is working at that place ? they should
at least explain to you, how and what are your tasks there. if not , talk to colleagues or your boss, your bosses boss
about that. the thing with the mouse , might be the cherry that has everything coming together at this point in your
you carry a lot of weight my friend. at some point in life, the weight is pressuring us down that we can’t go on
anymore. and also darkness is surrounding us and we are in an ocean of thoughts and worries, issues and dark
dreams. to see a way out of it, often seems out of reach or too far away at many points.
this is a point, where you have to take care about yourself. remind yourself something important. it does not matter
how long the journey is still in front of you, it does not matter how far you can see at this point in your life. what
matters most, is your next step. because you always can see your next step. look down, even on the darkest path
in the middle of the darkest night, you can see your foot. this is your next step. for you. for no one else. you decide
the pace, you decide what comes next. even small steps matter. because you are worth of each and every step you
take. you have come far and you will come even further. look where you are at, what you achieved in your life.
be proud of that and take your next important step. you are worth it. you are loved :purple_heart:
take a hand and let your path be guided for a while.
feel hugged


Hi lemongrass,
welcome to HeartSupport! Thank you so much for opening up and putting trust in our community. This is a safe space here. :hrtlegolove:

You are going through so much right now and it is no wonder that you are overwhelmed and exhausted. I would be, too. Probably everybody would be. You have made great progress leaving a toxic relationship, that is not easy at all, it requires lots of strength. I am also glad you have a friend who is so supportive of you. I understand that you would feel guilty about approaching your friends so often, but you are not exploiting them. The way you worry about this shows how much you care. There is also nothing wrong with recommending a therapist to your friend when you didn’t have enough knowledge. That shows how responsible you are and doesn’t mean you are neglecting them. It means you want your friends to get the best care possible.

I am sorry that you cannot afford therapy right now, even though you would profit greatly from it. There are a few possibilities here. Could you speak to a counsellor at your university? Maybe you have a professor you trust who could point you in the right direction or has other ideas that might help you? Do you have parents you can talk to and trust? Another possibility could be the online therapy service Better Help. With HeartSupport you can get the first week of counselling for free, if nothing else helps, that might be a possibility. (

Another important step might be to talk to your boss and ask for clearer instructions about your new work responsibilities. You cannot work well if nobody tells you what you actually have to do! I can understand to be scared to go to work or opening work emails in this situation.

It is really difficult to work on projects and be productive in your studies when you’re burned out and tired all the time. I can relate to being overwhelmed when you’re behind and feel like you cannot catch up. As for your suspicions about ADHD, it is possible for you to consult a doctor? They should be able to examine and properly diagnose you. You could tell them about your difficulties that might point to ADHD. It can be treated and handled. Even if it turns out not to be ADHD, I know of a great YouTube channel which is maintained by somebody who has ADHD. She has such great tips and tricks for everyday life, how to tackle your daily routines. If you want to check it out:

I want to tell you how strong you are. You stayed clean of self harm for so long. You can be proud of yourself. I believe in you that you can get through this hard part of life without your ex. Try not to be sucked back into the lies.

We support you and are here for you when you need us. :hrtlegolove:

1 Like

Hi there,

Really appreciate everyone’s replies. I was reading them in class and couldn’t get over how seen I felt.

As a reply to some of the questions you had specifically:

To my face, he was extremely protective and loving. It was constant pet names, compliments, and gifts “just because” (despite me telling him about 500 times I didn’t need anything). He would immediately drop everything to talk to me, whether I was mid-panic attack or just wanting a chat, and those talks would last for hours. All of this meant my guard was totally down and so I accepted some of his more obvious red flags (stuff like “no one else would get it”/“you’re smarter than them so you understand”, rushing into big milestones way too quickly, talking about rescinding his DNR status for me, conflicting views and opinions including some pretty misogynistic stuff - I identify as a woman so this really should have gotten to me more than it did, etc).

With other people it was a different story. I already mentioned the cheating thing, but it was more of the same. He would take really personal, vulnerable things I told him in my lowest moments and tell other people about them - and if he ran out of those, he would make things up. It ranged from me missing his birthday (even though I spent ages on his gift and he told me he loved it), to me being rude to his family and saying things I never had, to ME manipulating HIM (something I’d literally never considered, but stewed about for ages post-breakup in case I really had!) Sam started having concerns about our relationship once she noticed some of the dissonance between what he was saying and what I was telling her, and asked some of our other mutual friends to get as close to the whole story as she could.

I haven’t spoken to any officials at school about this yet - I honestly wouldn’t know where to start. I know something is wrong because I don’t feel like myself, but you’d think they’d need diagnoses or something like that to actually give me accommodation. My family “doesn’t believe in mental health” (the reason I started looking into ADHD as a real possibility so late was because I was always called lazy/careless and accepted it, even though I was actually trying really hard) so I don’t have any support in terms of reaching out to a family doctor, etc, and from what I’ve heard waitlists are crazy long (and actually filling out paperwork for that sounds like a total nightmare). Some kind of professional diagnosis (or non-diagnosis, lol) is the goal at some point in the future though!

I would really appreciate these, I’ve been looking into finding some kind of concrete path forward but haven’t had much luck or motivation.

As above, definitely. Even if I can’t fix everything, just being able do something would bring me some peace of mind.

Thanks again - really means a lot that everyone here would take the time to read and respond in such detail. :heart:


Hey, Lemongrass.

First let’s take a breath together.

And let’s take another big inhale and slowly release the exhale.

You are not alone in your struggles. I know it feels like it, but look how brave you were to write on this wall. You are brave. You are resilient. Breathe. Let that soak in.

Going back to your ex when that is where things started spiraling doesn’t sound like the best option for you right now. I would trust my gut, which you did, and move on.

Does the university where you go to school have an on-site health facility? Perhaps you can take advantage of free behavioral health services through the University. Worth looking into. That would be a kind compassionate action for you to take for you.

Your classes mean a lot to you. I can tell. Yes, you got stuck in an emotionally triggered state, so let’s ask yourself: what do I know for sure?
Do you love your classes?
Do you want to have a good working opportunity to look forward to?
Do you want to be more financially stable once you graduate?
What do you want deep in your heart of hearts?

Take a breath and listen to that little voice inside of you that loves you so much. Breathe again and be still. You will hear your truth.

Other people’s voices/opinions/ words are theirs. They are their stories. They do not need to be yours.

You are brave. You are resilient. You are loved. You can make the most of your life.

Trust God. He’s got you.