mental health blurbs

Do you ever suspect your friends hate or make fun of you?

  • No, I wouldn't care if they did

    Votes: 1 10.0%
  • No, I'm sure they wouldn't

    Votes: 2 20.0%
  • No, the thought's never crossed my mind, actually

    Votes: 2 20.0%
  • Yes, but the thought passes quickly and I don't humor it

    Votes: 3 30.0%
  • Yes, and it's ended up being true

    Votes: 3 30.0%
  • Yes, but I have no actual evidence

    Votes: 2 20.0%
  • Yes, and I'm a masochist so I secretly like it

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I don't have any friends and I hate it :(

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • I don't have any friends and that's fine

    Votes: 1 10.0%

  • Total voters
    10
Joined
Jan 12, 2019
Location
United States
I'm just gonna put all my mental health bullshit blurbs here

[insert obligatory disclaimer that I'm not a doctor, and this isn't medical advice so if you get attacked by bees etc. due to this content, it's not my fault]

The Feeling Your Friends Hate You

Despite having 0% of the evidence, I am convinced 99% of people in my life hate me, are annoyed by me, and/or only talk to me/hang out because I'm their personal LOLcow or out of pity

Yes, I am mentally ill

Yes, I encountered multiple forms of abuse in my life

Enough other people are like this that it's literally a meme. What caused this and what can possibly we do to remove ourselves from this thought trap?

I'm gonna use myself as an example and try to somewhat scientifically create a theory, so here are the major emotional events in my life:

- narcissistic parent only had me, so I had to be both the golden child and scapegoat from one moment to the next. At an early age, I realized I couldn't be simultaneously be a) pretty, smart, likable, what other people want to be, and having lots of potential, AND b) a whore, trash, weirdo, sick in the mind, swapped with a demon at birth, etc. Column A was mostly in public or when she was in a good mood or my other parent was around, and column B was always in private, and I knew - because I was told never to "air the dirty laundry" in public - that people tell each other what they want to hear to their faces or when they have to "perform" in front of someone else, and say what they really mean when they're 1 on 1, in private, with nobody else around

- I never had a core group of friends after elementary school (I felt like an outsider there, but was still outgoing so I could make friends enough for my own purposes) and moved between groups without ever feeling like I belonged, so I saw the two sides of "yay these people are my friends" then a month later they're ignoring me or making fun of me, and this was over and over again. I could deal with it in 7th grade because I had 2 friends the whole year in band who I really clicked with and were consistent, but one was in 8th grade so obviously she moved on, and I was still friends with the other girl but things were never exactly the same. Same thing happened in 9th grade -- had a group of lunchtime friends who I clicked with, but they all graduated that year because they were seniors and the same thing happened where I'd "find some friends" and something would happen where they'd shun me, or - the opposite - I didn't relate to them well or even like them much, and got tired of faking a friendship. The average teenager is an asshole by nature and can't help it, so I think this drama type thing of being friends then not being friends is something everyone will encounter over and over during that part of their life, but for people who are already well-adjusted and have a support system, it doesn't cause too many problems

- I'm not going into this much, but abusive relationships with the cycle of "love bombing" and abuse. Fortunately, I was smart enough to realize in a timely manner that the "love bombing" amounted to lies and the important information, for all intents and purposes, was that they thought I was a whore, retard, etc.

- had a "wakeup call" that I'm not going into, experienced ego death, and basically stripped my personality down to the foundation and rebuilt it through sheer will

What's this mean?

Attachment Styles
Attachment styles are ways people form relationships based on how they related to their caretakers while they were developing. Secure attachment happens when someone grows up having their emotional and physical needs consistently met; they have no doubt they're loved, don't feel like they have to prove anything to others, and are comfortable being themselves and leaving their caretakers because they know the caretakers will be there for them regardless. Insecure attachment happens when the caretakers meet the person's needs, but not consistently. This can cause abnormal separation anxiety during childhood and lead to clinginess in adult relationships and cause the person to have a dependent personality that needs constant validation from others. Avoidant attachment happens when the person's needs consistently go unmet by the caretakers. This causes the child to be ambivalent toward their parents - not emotionally affected by their presence or absence - and have no preference in the company of their parents vs. strangers, and later leads to the person being private, socially lazy (e.g. don't put effort into relationships), and have a fear of intimacy.

Because not everyone's life is consistently the same throughout - things could be fine, then a parent dies or gets addicted to drugs/alcohol, the other parent could cheat, they could move closer to toxic family and start falling into old patterns, they join a cult - attachment can intersect with other developmental stages. The child could be old enough to be unaffected, in this area, by the event. However, they can be partially disrupted if the event happens somewhere in between. Other factors - support system, other mental health issues, environment - combine to form the person's attachment style.

Secure people seem more likely to have healthy relationships, avoidant people seem likely to avoid them altogether, but insecure people seem to have the clinginess and self-doubt that would cause them to think their friends don't actually like them and have malevolent intentions, yet also be threatened by the prospect of simply not being friends with them.

Negative Self-Talk
A person's inner voice is typically based off one of their caretakers, usually their mother. Whatever they told you about you is likely the default of what your inner voice will say to yourself. Naturally, if your caretaker said horrible things about you, and you go through life never questioning it, you will think those things about yourself and accept them as truth. As it turns out, there's typically little evidence for what that voice has to say and if you look at it objectively, it doesn't make much sense.

Inner voice: "Anyone can look at you and tell you're fucked in the head"

Default programming is to accept that and think "Yea, people will avoid me because they can tell I'm mentally ill by looking at me"

Alternatively - and it takes effort - you can question it: "You're saying, because I have anxiety and PTSD, I deserve to be ostracized? If I need to have positive interactions with people to improve my mental health, what sense does that make to do the opposite of what will help me? There's no way to diagnose someone by looking at them and there are plenty of people who look "perfect" by society's standards who are mentally ill, so my looks shouldn't mean much. If someone is going to 'diagnose' me based on stereotypes about my looks, then avoid me, they're not someone I want to talk to anyway. The people who have said this type of thing to me, have themselves, been toxic and haven't had my best interests in mind, so it's not input I should take seriously."

Part of the "my friends secretly hate me" likely has to do with negative self talk and believing:

1) that if someone "hated" you, they wouldn't simply find other people to interact with

2) that if someone continues to interact with someone they supposedly "hate" that doesn't reflect badly on them

3) that you can't trust your ability to think critically about reality

4) that if you did something to make your friend dislike you they would continue to pretend to like you instead of telling you they have an issue, and that's acceptable

5) the narrative that everyone else is "normal" and you are "weird", just because you're there for every freakish facet of your own human life but you only see the polite public facade of others

6) assuming for a moment you are, hypothetically, for argument's sake, a "LOLcow", that someone having a fake friendship and spending IRL time and money to hang out with you for the sake of trolling doesn't seem totally psychopathic and toxic on their part

7) that there's something or multiple things deservedly, rightfully contemptible about you, your interests, your personality, etc.

8) that, again for the sake of argument, your friends are just hanging out with you to make fun of you, you owe them your friendship because they were "nice" at one or a handful of times in the past

9) that signs such as a steady income, not having legal trouble for stupid reasons, being responsible with your property, not being addicted to any substances, not having totally self-induced health issues, not being a drama queen with imaginary "haters", treating people respectfully, having decent grades and a lack of disciplinary problems if you're in school, etc. aren't sufficient evidence that you're a functional person, and anyone who is making fun of you isn't basically choosing to be a twit over a subjective issue instead of simply interacting with different people

10) the worldview through the lens of some kind of eternal worm with no power or agency. If someone who supposedly hates you is begging you to hang out with them, maybe you're the one with the upper hand in the power dynamic? As the more powerful person, you shouldn't feel threatened by someone like that, and such are safe to treat them with basic decency anyway while they seethe internally. Likewise, if a less powerful person is making fun of you, their opinions don't hold any weight. If they're actually your friend, however, acting confident and polite while not oversharing your personal problems actually comes across as more likable so you win either way.

External Sources of Self-Worth
Your worth isn't defined by how many friends you have, what a particular person thinks of you, or the precise social standing of your friends. Obviously, you want to value yourself accurately, but your fear is probably of overvaluing yourself and of getting an attitude of overinflated, undeserved self-worth. If you already think everyone else is better than you, that they're right and you're wrong, that you deserve hate and ridicule, you feel like a 🤡 on a daily basis, etc. then you have a lot of room to go before you're in danger of becoming a self-important douchebag.

Americans throw the word "friend" around where it probably doesn't apply. You talk to someone and they're like, "My friend...my friend at work...I saw my friend...my friends...texting my friend...my friend on [insert social media platform]"

Are those really their friends though? Or are those acquaintances? If those are literally that person's friends, how exactly does that impact your actual day-to-day life? Who even gives a fuck?

Your negative self talk probably cares because it's telling you that you're weird and that's entirely bad, and you don't have friends because you're weird, and if you were "normal" and "fit in" then you would have more friends, so having friends is how you prove to your toxic parent brain virus that you're not weird.

There are definitely scientific reasons to have at least one friend, because loneliness can cause and exacerbate mental and physical health problems. However, everyone has a different need for socialization and it's not true that if you would be a better person if you had 30 friends instead of 3. If you're really extroverted, you need more friends so you can get your needs met amid others' schedules, commitments, and personal preferred level of socialization. If you're really introverted, you could probably do with one friend you see occasionally but pick up exactly where you left off. Some people can be almost entirely solitary and be happy. It doesn't matter how many friends you have, so long as your social needs are being met and you don't have persistent feelings of loneliness.

If the final word for how you appraise yourself doesn't come from you, that is a problem. You think you look good, are doing well, etc. and then you see that person and they might give you a weird up-and-down look, make a backhand compliment, or have the unmitigated gall to just tell you to your face you look like shit and are never going to make anything of yourself? It hits you in a very emotional place and that's why they do it. Your negative self-talk starts going, like, "Sitting there like a clown with your stupid outfit and your stupid hair and your stupid face. You're in denial of how fucked up you are. You live in a fantasy world and blow smoke up your own ass about how you're happy and this is what you chose. That's why you're crazy. You choose to be crazy. If you stopped this stupid act, grew up, and straightened out, opportunities would fall in your lap left and right but you're too selfish and stupid."

It's extremely difficult to get out of that mindset. At the end of the day, a well-adjusted person will reserve their judgements and bring up any legitimate concerns in a separate conversation in private. It says more about the person who's trying to assert themselves over you in such a cheap way, than it does about you, assuming you're just living your life and not hurting anyone. Negative self-talk is deceptive because it presents a lot of half-truths and things that sound "brutally honest" on the surface but if you question them, they're not actually accurate. Ex. "If I were in denial, I wouldn't have sought treatment or tried to do what I was advised to do. Being 'crazy' isn't fun, so if I were acting just to be dramatic, I would be able to turn it off when it benefitted me. I can't do that so this isn't a choice. If I remember correctly, it was only the abusive people in my life that called me 'selfish' and it was for not doing exactly what they wanted me to do, so I call bullshit."

Basing your self-worth off other people means, potentially, how good you feel could be snapping back and forth constantly depending on who you're around and how they're feeling that day. Nothing fundamental about you has changed during that time. If, however, you learn to independently hold yourself in fairly decent esteem, you can become less susceptible to the fallacies mentioned above, about your social dependence on others and their validation. If you become free of the idea that everyone else is more qualified than you to decide how decent you are, and you act more like a lion and less like a worm to the point where you have so little emotional investment tied up in whether other people like you that you aren't even emotionally invested in thinking about that, it itself.

If you find yourself being bothered by the thought your friends might secretly hate you, refer to the list of fallacies and examine your own thoughts against them. Remind yourself of your accomplishments and your good qualities and, of your imperfections, imagine that your flaws are, if you were a character in a story, what would make you someone's favorite character. Habit is a big part of emotional reactions to things and your thought processes, so the more you dissect your negative self-talk and realize it's bullshit, the better you get at ignoring it - it's just an internal insult-generator some asshole installed in you - and hearing the more accurate information.
 
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Joined
Jan 12, 2019
Location
United States
There are two wolves inside of you
One doesn't like to ask for help because it thinks it will cause others to treat you like a weak, helpless idiot
The other doesn't like to ask for help because it thinks others will hate you for mildly inconveniencing them
Both wolves are maladaptive behaviors

First off, it's absolutely healthy to make an effort to be as self-sufficient as possible and to try to provide for your own needs. If you can provide for yourself, you will be less likely to be locked into predatory, possibly co-dependent, relationships -- your friend is completely toxic and manipulative, but they're always there to give you rides to work or whatnot, or they're the only person who invites you anywhere; your partner or relative is abusive, but you don't have financial or emotional means to leave their ass. Self-efficacy and confidence play off one another, so as you are able to rely more on yourself, you become more confident in your ability to make advancements in that area, leading to more self-confidence, etc.

Sometimes, you can be over your head in a situation and that's fine because you need to be challenged in order to learn, and gain XP. There is the potential at any time that you can be thrown into serious sink-or-swim situations with or without a safety net, at times, with the cost being damage to the psyche, physical harm, death, financial damage, or other ill effects. If the option is available, asking for help should always be be considered as a tool for coping with the world. In many cases, the alternative to asking for help is to continue to make the problem worse.

Consider: You're driving on a backroad that's covered in snow and your car slips into a ditch. Just past the ditch is a steep hillside. You try to un-stuck the car and you feel it drift slightly toward the hillside. You have a few options:

- continue spinning the tires and frantically rocking the car as it continues to drift and goes over the hillside

- call AAA, roadside assistance, someone you know who has a truck, 911, or flag down a truck or other AWD/4x4 you see passing

Of course, you could sleep in your car or leave it and keep walking, counting on the snow to eventually thaw - which could, by the way, either free the car, or allow it to slip down the hill because the snow was holding it up - but if you are motivated by fear of perceived inadequacy, or fear of bothering others, by not asking for help, you could be turning your fears into reality. The person from AAA or the guy with the truck isn't going to judge you for your car being stuck in the snow, it will probably take them under 15 minutes to free the car, and after that time, you both can go on your way and probably won't think about it much in a week.

However, if you continue trying to free the car while observing that every time you spin the tires, you drift closer to the hill (trying the same thing over and over again and expecting different results is often thought of as the definition of stupidity, or at least temporarily-impaired judgment), then you slide down. The person with their own truck, that they don't want also going over the hill, can no longer help you. They are not obligated to, either. It's going to take much longer, and it's possible that more people will be involved. If you don't have AAA, you will now have to pay whatever it costs for a tow truck to pull you out. It's very likely your car is damaged, ranging from some dents and needing an alignment to it being totaled, and possibly un-drivable; in either case, you will have consequences to deal with for some time in the future.

In that case, you should be able to see that asking for help at the right time doesn't make you inadequate or bothersome, but prevents you from being such. It's easier for everyone - you and whoever helps you - if you stop and ask for help before the problem becomes unmanageable. Being able to judge your limits to "quit while you're ahead" shows competence and respect for whomever you're asking for help.

If you've been treated like an idiot, infantilized, or treated like a burden for asking for help in the past, know those are inappropriate responses. That's not how a reasonable person will or should respond to you asking for help.

You may wonder, "Am I asking for help too much or too often?" Even if you may be, because you think your limits are more restrictive than they really are (you have to fuck up a little before you can judge them, ngl, and that's the only way), the above reactions are still inappropriate. If it makes you feel better, you can think about your thinking and go a bit outside the immediate problem.

- "Have I gathered enough information myself?" - In my line of work, we have an acronym, RTFM. It stands for "Read The Fabulous Manual". See also: LMGTFY, or "Let Me Google That For You". If the fabulous manual does not answer your question, you will at least know the optimal questions to ask.

- "What's the worst that could happen?" - Sometimes the costs are not high. If you're learning to draw or how to make pancakes for the first time, it costs very little to use a new page or make a new pancake. With a lot of things, you can keep trying almost indefinitely with no serious effects. There are situations where this is not the case. You don't want to electrocute yourself because you didn't want to ask for help on how to install your ceiling fan, or break your leg on a ski slope because you didn't want to look like a n00b for asking what the double black diamonds mean.

- "Can I transfer knowledge?" - What is a violin but a tiny fretless guitar you play by screeching it with a hairy stick? If you know what a housecat is like, and that a lion is a type of cat, you can deduce that lions don't fly or lay eggs without having to explicitly ask. Like a wise man once said, "If you can dodge a wrench, you can dodge a ball"

- "Am I being honest with myself?" - Sometimes what the querent is asking for isn't a solution but a socially acceptable source of emotional validation for feelings of frustration, disconnection, inadequacy, boredom, etc. "They're asking for help for attention," may seem judgmental but that's not always what's going through the person's head; they're probably not consciously thinking, "If I ask for help, I can get my 15 seconds of fame." Put your ego aside and be honest as to whether your question directly regards a real need, or if you have an unrelated emotional need that can be more appropriately met through different means.

Tit-for-tat "scorekeeping" in relationships (romantic or otherwise) can build animosity because there's always going to be an imbalance, but I find that helping others can relieve some feelings of inadequacy or guilt. If you were inadequate, how would you be able to help others? If you help others, you're bartering rather than "mooching".

If the help you're asking for is psychological or emotional, it would behoove you to call a hotline or look into getting therapy. Friends and relatives can do a lot, but they may have things going on in their own lives that limit their emotional bandwidth. Secondly, they may offer bad but well-intentioned advice ("It's that damn computer.", "You just need to pray about it.", "Let's go get fuckin' wasted tonight."), or not communicate in the most therapeutic way ("You're going through a hard time? Tell me about it, yesterday [I me I my my me me I myself mine my me I].").
 
Joined
Jan 12, 2019
Location
United States
Ouroboros

From nowhere they bring accusations
The burden's on me for my own vindication
They say I'm a terrible person
A victim of mental perversion

Am I actually over-sensitive
Self-absorbed, narcissistically pensive?
They claim they never could say that
They claim they could never have done that

Given evidence, the story changed
From me being mistaken and only deranged
It was fabricated justification
Inconvenience or a source of frustration

They placed an axe in my hand
Put a shroud on my head
I'm unfeeling evil, persecuting craft
Unbridled black beast, psychopathic steel wrath

Episodic trauma dares me to strike
But that'd only prove their judgements were right
They played the blameless, the martyr and victim
I'm a childish lout, loathsome, vindictive

Reluctantly relent to their pleas
The revered one that I've displeased
To them, claim I owe my subsistence
Their sacrifice, my ungrateful resistance

Next comes a fortnight of attrition
I'm able breathe in this intermission
A welcome break from garrulous contact
Breath of relief and much-welcome fallback

I freeze, tense, at a familiar sound
My heart sinks, my pulse pounds
Their stinking, slithering, vile return
My rising bile and curse under breath sworn

A false apology absent of change
Insincere and prearranged
I expect this cycle again and again
My compassion dissolves under the strain

Must an honorable person always forgive
An injury they're repeatedly forced to re-live?
How many times is it expected to take
For one to correct their blatant mistakes?

Every time I draw my line then relent
Due to others, persistent, to demand my assent
The saint's hidden venom grows more concentrated
I look a fool; hysterical, weaker and faded

Like the knight cannot coexist with the wyrm
The cycle must come to its definite term
Whether that be by distance or death
Better self-immolation than a slave's strangled breath​
 
Joined
Jan 12, 2019
Location
United States
Due to the virus, I've been allowing myself to get more sun because I'm woowoo and think it increases the immune system or something. I don't know, of course, how effective this is but I think a possible benefit is to my mental health. There's been some doubt in the medical world that sunscreen is a) not harmful and b) recommended for everyone in the same amounts.

The recent sun-related recommendations are, like many things, based around people evolved for a place that looks like this.

6654

They can just look out a window on an overcast day and that counts as "a rather adequate amount of sun innit". However, following one-size fits all guidelines designed for the people with the absolute minimal requirement for sunlight could be contributing to poor mental and physical health et al. in anyone with more built-in SPF, such as people like me who come from places that look like this (yes, very scientific)

6655

Obviously, it's not like sunlight magically cures PTSD or eliminates the idiot brain virus that causes me to bully myself, but it's easier to deal with those things when I don't have a constant background noise of depression and anxiety, and when I have the motivation/energy to do activities that make me feel better. It sort of snowballs because if cooking, cleaning, or exercise doesn't feel like an ordeal, I can get the benefits from eating food, having surroundings that don't annoy me, and...exercising. I've also found that I'm not as tired in the evening, but when I sleep it works like a Minecraft bed -- lay down and suddenly it's tomorrow.

Sunlight is proven to trigger serotonin release and regulate melatonin production. More serotonin means better mood, lower stress, and more motivation.

Unfucking your melatonin means you sleep when you're supposed to sleep, and don't sleep when you're not supposed to sleep.

Sunlight is the most efficient way to get (make?) adequate vitamin D, which has a number of benefits to mood, immune system, and metabolism.

Getting a sunburn is still bad. It's not like you will continue get more benefits the more sunlight you get. I went from putting on sunscreen as soon as I woke up to basically only wearing it if I was going to be outside for more than 20 minutes. I could probably go longer - I never wore sun screen growing up (it was banned in the house for some reason) and didn't really get many sunburns - but I don't personally like how I look with a noticeable tan, and I want to reduce photodamage.

Running errands? Nay 'screen.

Going on a journey to drop a certain ring into a certain volcano in Mordor? Yea 'screen

6656
This is your brain before and after adequate sunlight
 
Joined
Jan 12, 2019
Location
United States
Challenging feel-good bullshit I wish someone had told me early in life


It's ok to be mediocre

It's fine that some people don't like you

If you're "nobody", be thankful you're not under the pressure to be "somebody"

It's ok to be alone

"Everyone is beautiful" is an unhelpful lie, as it's ok to be unremarkable or even ugly

You're not required to have the same feelings as everyone around you

Your opinion doesn't matter, nor do others'

It's ok to not be unique or special

It's ok to be bad at things

It's ok to be bored by something society says is interesting and vice versa

It's ok to like or dislike things

Not everyone has to accept you and you don't have to accept others

"Perfection" is a prison unto itself

Being "the ideal person" according to society is not the purpose of life

It should be expected that you will fail at most things you try

It's ok to not be recognized for anything you do

Ultimately, you will never be "totally free", and that's ok

It's ok that most of your fantasies go unrealized

It's ok to not "be yourself" at all times

It's ok to be disappointed

Human nature is violent, greedy, perverse, and self-destructive but that's ok

Yes, that absolutely includes you

It's ok to not be A Good Person (TM)

You are not endowed with inherent worth and that's ok

It's ok to have socially unacceptable thoughts and fantasies

You aren't A Good Person (TM), you've just not been put in a situation that compels you to be "bad"

It's ok to not have control over anything at all external to you

You don't even have total control of the totality of your actions and that's ok

The universe, and by extension, you, are full of blatant contradictions and that's ok

You will inevitably be "the toxic person" in some situation

You are not genuinely altruistic or selfless and that's ok

You're not as smart as you think you are and that's ok

You have many many many flaws you will never overcome and that's ok

You're everything someone somewhere hates and wish they never become and that's ok

You've created a spectacularly bad first impression to someone, guaranteed, and that's all they remember you by and that's ok

Some people will find you hopelessly annoying, no matter what you do, and that's ok

It's ok that everyone will interpret you differently, it's guaranteed not to be how you interpret yourself, and you absolutely fucking cannot control anyone's head canon of you

"Being happy" is the stupidest possible goal for life

If this seems excessively negativistic or nihilistic, you've missed the point
 
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