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Ferrett just wrote a really good piece of advice for jump-starting… - The Fucking Bluebird of Goddamn Happiness [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Zoethe

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[May. 3rd, 2004|08:20 pm]
Zoethe
[Current Mood |mellowmellow]

Ferrett just wrote a really good piece of advice for jump-starting yourself out of depression. The only thing I would add is, once you have accomplished something for the day, if you can honestly feel that you got enough done for that day, don't continue stewing about it.

Depression loves itself. It loves curling up in a ball of misery and self-flagellating for hours on end. And it does such a good job at it that it can even make your most dire predictions about yourself come true. "My girlfriend/boyfriend will leave me." Well, yeah! Who wants to put up with that crap all the time? "My job sucks and is only going to get worse" isn't going to motivate you to do the kind of work that will get you noticed.

The worst people to hang around with are the most charming: the sophisticated cynics with the rapier wit and and a worldly attitude that denigrates the charm in everything. I have to pull myself away from such people because they blacken my worldview.

Stop being fond of your own misery, because it's not what makes you unique. There's plenty of that to go around.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: the_siobhan
2004-05-04 12:42 am (UTC)
*waves arms around in distress*

See those charming cynics you talk about are exactly the people who pull me out of my depressions. The people you praise who can find the good in every situation - they just make me feel more alone.

I'm not saying your advice is bad, but you're giving it like it applies to everybody. If I tried to follow it I would drive myself mad.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 01:05 am (UTC)
True - not everything works for everybody. You are definitely a good reminder that mileage may vary.
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[User Picture]From: the_siobhan
2004-05-04 01:24 am (UTC)
I sometimes think I'm the milage variance for most things.
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[User Picture]From: shiftercat
2004-05-15 02:48 am (UTC)
(Late comment)

It depends on the person. Some cynics pick worthy targets, and make you laugh about something that would otherwise make you wince or just roll your eyes. But there are also those cynics who denigrate everything, or almost everything, and will turn their cutting wits on you if you dare to disagree. Those are the ones to avoid.
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[User Picture]From: the_siobhan
2004-05-17 12:56 am (UTC)
(late answer)

Agreed.

My friends aren't cynical because they think it's clever, they are cynical because they really have been through hell and back. They laugh at the weak and the shitty and the evil because it's better to laugh than to cry. I laugh along with them, and when we're done I feel better because I know I have allies - people who "get it".

I think the difference is that my friends are genuinely glad for the good things that happen in each others' lives. They just have a different way of talking about it.

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[User Picture]From: rhapsody_98
2004-05-04 12:46 am (UTC)
What's that they say about misery loving company? I've certainly found that company does NOT love misery. Hehe
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 01:09 am (UTC)
That's for damned sure! Hee!!!
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[User Picture]From: tevriel
2004-05-04 02:41 am (UTC)

Time for a rather shallow comment...

I've been depressed fairly often, but I think I'm lucky on the work front; I've had "my job sucks and it's killing my soul and I have to get a different job or I'll die", but not any especial anticipation of it getting worse. (It did get worse, I just hadn't expected it, and then I either got fired or quit - it was a little ambivalent - and it was the happiest day of my telemarketing career.)

I have a friend who's a sophisticated cynic with a rapier wit and a worldly attitude that tends to mock a lot of things, but he's not someone I feel the need to avoid; he tends to assault only worthy targets and he's someone I always feel happier for having been around. With some people that kind of demeanour is protective camouflage for a very sweet and gentle, but vulnerable self.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 03:02 am (UTC)

Re: Time for a rather shallow comment...

It's amusing, but I find that if I'm around it continually I grow increasingly bitter.
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[User Picture]From: kimbyrle
2004-05-04 04:22 am (UTC)
"My girlfriend/boyfriend will leave me." Well, yeah! Who wants to put up with that crap all the time?

That hits home. What do you do when you are the girlfriend who they're convinced will leave? He refuses to be helped, and I'm nearing the end of my rope.
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[User Picture]From: correspondguy
2004-05-04 06:14 am (UTC)
You leave. No, really. I bet Zoethe and The Ferrett will give you exactly the same advice.

Three choices: 1) You stay, he listens, everything gets better. Not likely, though you're the expert. 2) You stay, he doesn't listen, things get worse. Great, now everyone loses. 3) You leave, the ball's in his court, you don't know if things get better.

The thing to remember is that you're an actor in this situation as well. If things are sucking for you because of something you can't control (the boyfriend's behavior), then the best thing to do is assert something you can control: your presence. That's not to say you have to leave, change your name, and move to another state with the ex-girlfriend protection program. You could still keep contact to see if he does pull himself out.

Keep in mind that I'm assuming he's doing nothing but whine. Any action on his part that actually results in something - a job, some improvement in outlook, the loss of a couple of pounds - should get him the benefit of the doubt. I believe our illustrious hostess would concur that people who are depressed are in need of help. If they're willing to accept the help and take some action, then they deserve credit for it. We can't expect miracles, but we don't have to go down with the ship. A drowning person will suck you under if you're not careful. Remember that you're a person who should be safe as well.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 11:31 am (UTC)
Glad to see a confirming opinion, and from someone who has been on the in danger of being left side.
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[User Picture]From: theferrett
2004-05-04 03:31 pm (UTC)
I bet Zoethe and The Ferrett will give you exactly the same advice.

Your Magic 8-Ball is indeed correct.
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[User Picture]From: correspondguy
2004-05-05 01:57 am (UTC)
I will now attempt to predict the winner of the 2005 World Series...

...Try again later....

Damn.
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From: (Anonymous)
2004-05-04 07:12 pm (UTC)
Remember that you're a person who should be safe as well.

I am glad I saw this today. I am newly-separated and still alternating between guilt and numbness for having left in the first place. But then I see my kids and how they are happier and thriving since we left, and I know I made the right decision.
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[User Picture]From: correspondguy
2004-05-05 01:57 am (UTC)
Glad I could help.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 11:28 am (UTC)
Honestly? Leave. It's clear that nothing you do helps. In point of fact, the person is probably just basking in the attention you are trying to give and using it to fuel their own misery. You can't rescue someone who is determined to be miserable (and the refusal to address the issue pretty much confirms that determination). Either make a clean break or condition getting back together upon his getting help nad then stick to your guns and refuse to engage in debate over whether you're a rotten bitch or not for doing so. You aren't, for the record. And in the end you will be doing the person a bigger favor by not being an enabler - or he will just go find himself another one, in which case won't you be glad to know you were smart enough to escape?
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From: (Anonymous)
2004-05-04 07:08 pm (UTC)
Your post is timely, and wise. I have just separated from my spouse for all of the reasons you gave in response to kimbyrle, to say nothing of the effect all of that was having on our kids.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 07:10 pm (UTC)
It's wisdom bought with a lot of pain, believe me. Good luck you you and to your kids.
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From: (Anonymous)
2004-05-04 07:16 pm (UTC)
Thank you. Your wisdom means a lot to me.

- Anonymous (because my ex reads your journal as well)
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[User Picture]From: happydog
2004-05-04 05:25 am (UTC)
The worst people to hang around with are the most charming: the sophisticated cynics with the rapier wit and and a worldly attitude that denigrates the charm in everything. I have to pull myself away from such people because they blacken my worldview.

egg zackly. People who can't believe in beauty or sincerity, and will not allow you to either; they remove your belief by subtle surgery, through laughter, until finally you find that like them, you can trust or believe in nothing at all and can only mock.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 11:29 am (UTC)
Yup. It eats away at the soul.
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[User Picture]From: roadnotes
2004-05-04 11:51 am (UTC)
"The worst people to hang around with are the most charming: the sophisticated cynics with the rapier wit and and a worldly attitude that denigrates the charm in everything. I have to pull myself away from such people because they blacken my worldview."

Yes, and yes! I have some acquaintances whose presence I can only afford to be in for short periods, because of that attitude. And if you're prone to depression, they will only pull you down. Wittily and "truthfully," by their lights, but it still drags you down with them.
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[User Picture]From: zoethe
2004-05-04 12:36 pm (UTC)
Because you participate in the witty banter, and it affects your mind (generic "you," of course). And it's much more sophisticated to dig up the worst in things than to see the best. But it eats you alive.
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