A Little Withdrawal is Good For The Soul [Mental Health Monday #2]

Sometimes you have to just pull back, retreat, and turn the world down–or off.  Sometimes you need a good reset.  Sometimes we get caught up in the daily drama, especially online.  Stuff like who’s followed whom, who didn’t I follow back fast enough, what conversations/tweets/status updates I missed, who haven’t I checked in on or interacted with in too long, which messages I thought I replied to but didn’t, who got all stirred up about what.  The endless newsfeeds and timelines, the constant notifications, the Neverending keeping up.  Sometimes it’s hard to…well, keep up.

My head was becoming a pretzel and I was getting overrun with guilt, conflict, polarizing vibes, and rejection.

I know, I know–first world problems and all that.  Not too long ago, I would’ve killed or at least maimed for such a flourishing social life, “even just” online.

And please, please don’t get me wrong; I love everyone I interact with.  Yes, I really do.  I appreciate being acknowledged, and accepted, and even embraced, for who I truly am.  I’ve been utterly and delightfully amazed at the outpouring of support I have received.  I’ve been thawed out and warmed up by those who have reached out to me and formed bonds with me.  That’s not what I’m talking about pulling back from.  In fact, people like you are the reason I’m still here and won’t go away.

I’m talking about the rest of–and the BS within–parts of the scene.  The fluff, the details, the baggage.  It’s partially my responsibility, because I allowed it to happen, and I allowed the boundaries and balance to blur and fuzz together.  Some people have also changed (drastically, without much warning), and I can’t do anything about that.

I’ve gone through two?  Three?  Four? divorces between friends, and as I process the initial ache from the concept of being rejected and cast out, I’m starting to think that it might have been for the best.  After all, the world can be a tragic and brutal place at times; who needs more negativity?  Some people might, but I’m not one of them, by default.  I’m subject to my own spectrum of ups and downs like anyone else, and these may take their sweet time in processing, and sometimes I don’t have the good sense to shut up when I’m feeling this way…but maybe that’s for the best, too. 

After all, it would probably be dishonest of me to sugarcoat my life and paint only a shiny happy image.  That would be like the supermodels who look so stunning in the lipstick ad, but when you peel back the lighting and press the undo button on the airbrushing software, there’s an ordinary person behind the facade.  People have gotten increasingly skeptical about fashion in general, once the airbrush cat escaped from the bag.  People stopped trying (as much, as tirelessly) to emulate those perfect people, because they didn’t even actually exist!  The public is justifiably in a state of backlash against the fashion and advertising industries over having been betrayed and misled for decades.  Well, I’m not going to do that to you.  I’m chronicling real life, where there is good, bad, and everything in between.

So, I’m taking some mental health actions.  Not a break from this blog, of course (!)–rather, mostly from Twitter.  I had let myself get too entrenched, and that’s my responsibility.  I’ll own that.  I hung too large a hat on who had disconnected from me when and over what issue.  I’m going to be friends with whoever is left over, and thankfully that’s dang near everybody.  I might even go through and do a mass spring cleaning.  Spring is here for us already, and it will be upon the rest of the world soon enough.

Today, I took some proactive steps.  I set my tweets to private.  Unfortunately, that means that no one can share/retweet the blog posts, which really sucks because the whole point of starting the Twitter account was to make friends in the community and get this blog out there so that it could help more people.

I guess that by posting this, I’m probably not really helping anyone tonight.  I’m sorry about that.  Maybe I’m only helping myself.  I think I’ve gone into a steeled self-preservation mode.  Maybe I’ll block the few offenders so that I can unlock my tweets and go public again.  We’ll see.

For now, I have to do what I have to do.  I’m simply being me, and I realize that some people don’t like that.  I guess you can’t please everybody, and I’m no different.  Shit happens.  I’ll be OK, thanks to all of the awesome people who have reached out to me with love, concern, support, and encouragement.  I wish I could hug them infinitely (if they like hugs, of course)!  They’ve been my sunshine and lifeline.  They’ve brightened my skies and thawed out my spirit, preventing a Deep Freeze.

For that, I am thankful.  I will recover.  And I’m not going away.  I’m a stubborn chick when I need to be, and the world ain’t going to get rid of me that easily. 🙂 ❤

 

 

 

 

 

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19 Comments

  1. “people like you are the reason I’m still here and won’t go away.”

    im honestly not stuck on myself to think you only mean me, dont get me wrong– but i read this post up and down and thought of things. and i caught this line and i smiled. compliments like this (and i *am* stuck on myself to know it includes me <3) are the ones i would take over a weighted blanket. (in fact, id still take a cat over a weighted blanket.)

    but this is still another 17 pounds of compliment. ❤

    i enjoy thanking you as much as i enjoy the compliment. you are simply a pleasure to talk to, a pleasure to hear from, a pleasure to read and a wonderful pleasure to thank. ❤ i know im biased, but thats only getting worse ❤ ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww, thank you so much dear! 😘😘. Yes, you definitely were included in that group of lovelies I swooned over in my post 😊❤️

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “sometimes I don’t have the good sense to shut up when I’m feeling this way…but maybe that’s for the best, too.”

    id feel terrible if there were any reason you couldnt talk about that on your own blog. sometimes i dont have the sense to shut up either, but then i read something like this and im like “whoa! must comment!” i actually do that less on average than i used to, most places. with you its the opposite. in a world that makes me want say “MRRROOWH…” this blog more than any other… https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MsROL4Kf8QY

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m glad to witness the inner dialogue in coping with the loss of a friend. Thank you for sharing it. I know it hurts so much to lose a friend. It hurts every time. It makes us experience every age we’ve lived in an internal progression of maturity until we reach our current age, and realize we should probably go with what our inner adult insists is the proper way to cope. Then we resent not letting our inner 2-year-old handle this one for a bit. That part is kinda funny. But it hurts too much to laugh right now. Ask me to tell you about loving from a distance when you’re feeling better. (I know you’ll probably guess what it means and then probably think through the implications and dally about with some ideas I didn’t think of in the meantime) Know you are loved. Zap these words into a mental sound byte in Sigourney Weaver’s voice: “I have friends who love me and recognize my value.” Save it in your minds pocket and play it over and over and over until you believe it. Mwah!!!! ❤️

    Liked by 4 people

    1. Omg thank you very much, honey! Your kindness warms my heart and your funny part made me smile 😊❤️

      I certainly will ask you about that love from a distance thing! 😊 Who knows, I’ll probably end up surprising myself and asking you fairly soon. One thing I can’t do is hold grudges. I’m not even holding one now (!) ❤️ (Lol). I go from shocked to hurt (for a few hours to a few days, possibly a week) to angry/irritated/snarky (for a few hours to 1-2 days) to a softer irritation/merely annoyed (for much longer to neutral-but-untrusting and pity for them (forever). Never a grudge, though; I used to try to hold one as a kid and I never could for very long lol. Right now I’d say I’m transitioning from hurt to irritated and snarky, but I’m also feeling the annoyed part; it’s kind of a jumble. It’s not entirely linear; more like an ebb and flow. I can say that the support I’ve gotten has been absolutely amazing and it has helped this process go much faster 😘😘💜

      Probably in another couple of days I’ll be able to have a good therapeutic conversation about loving from a distance. I can love someone from a distance and still be annoyed at them lol 😉🌺💓

      This has actually been good though! I’ve done a little trimming and a lot of the negative people in my following list are gone. As a result, the (many!) people still connected are much more positive and peaceful. It’s much more congruent with how I wanted my blogging social media experience to be 👏🏼😊😘💙💜

      I’m starting to feel lighter now; all there is left to do is catch up on the sleep I lost due to the stress hormones that I’m still clearing out lol. Mwah back to you, darlin! 💘🌷💘

      Liked by 2 people

  4. How well I understand, friend! We have to do what is best for ourselves, come what may. I have my times of withdrawing into silence and resetting boundaries that I find I must do.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Timely post, at least for me. I am currently meditating on whatever drives me to befriend people whose profiles (not their Twitter profiles. My first solid impression of them; though I have a very tentative theory about signs of trollitude in Twitter profiles 😉 scream “troll”. Obviously, I can read the answer to that most popular books on psychology, but right now I need to observe this …thing myself. And then get over it, because there’s really nothing interesting about a person who turns on the abuse within 5 seconds of somebody just not agreeing with them.
    (I doubt this applies to you, you seem to be far less cranky than I am, or actually, not cranky at all, but:) Part of my problem is that I am really 50% troll myself, in that I want to react to aggression. Aggressively. And that’s not a helpful trait.
    But that’s enough semi-cryptic stuff about me.
    You write that you got caught up in online drama, and that reminds me of observing friendship drama in my youth and wondering why “everybody was overreacting like that”. In hindsight, they were simply people who were emotionally involved. I just wasn’t.
    We “online autistics” keep saying that online is our lifeline, the “place” where we can function socially. That’s a lot of emotional involvement, right there. So, maybe you did not get hung up too much, maybe this is the type of calibration/adjustment issue that arises in personal relationships/friend circles all the time.
    Soo, lots of autistic hugs 🐙 (will that squid show here, I wonder) and take your time.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Hi! Thank you so much for sharing your insight! Very interesting viewpoint! (“Interesting” in a really good way 😊)

      I love the word “trollitude” – that’s perfect! I would love to hear more about your theory, if you’re willing to share! (And if not, that’s no problem; I completely understand 💞).

      One potential characteristic of a troll that I have seen is to espouse viewpoints that are very clearly offensive to the vast majority of people, such as pro-Nazi BS or pro-other-mass-wrong, like Lenin/Stalin. Or to be constantly picking fights; it always surprises me when I see a very select few of our own constantly engage in aggression against others. I find several subjects fairly offensive but I don’t spend my day seeking them out and initiating tirades against them. That fits the traditional profile of an online troll as I’ve understood it. Then again, the world probably does need those who do call out the perpetrators of injustice. I can see both sides of the argument/situation. This is one of the few things I’m actually on the fence about 😊❤️

      You’re so right – investing the time online to interact with the community (and the very idea that we have even *found* such a community of people like us in the first place) is indeed a significant emotional investment. You nailed it 😊 So yeah, I totally agree that it’s easy to overextend ourselves at times. It’s human nature, I think.

      Hehe I chuckled warm-heartedly at the “overreacting” part 😊 I can relate quite a bit to that. Even on TV or even when observing other people in person or online, I find myself thinking (not saying out loud), “omg calm down. Just chill” lol 😉 The tendency with excess emotion is for logic to start to wane. I find that I’m much more comfortable dealing with logic and reason. I try to keep my emotions in check and the logic in the driver’s seat, because then I can retain self-control, which is important to me. Some might see that as “stuffing” emotions, which may or may not be healthy, so my approach might be problematic, either at the time or in the future. My jury’s out on that one 😊

      Yeah I would like to think that I’m not a real cranky person, although I do have my moments lol. Being trolled or otherwise significantly emotionally affected by something can throw me off kilter. My fuse is usually pretty long and my tolerance is usually rather high, but when it’s done, it’s done, and I can start to roar pretty loudly lol. I can get pretty fiery at times 😉

      I’ve learned not to begrudge those who are crankier, because everyone has a story, and no one else can ever hope to know the entirety of someone else’s story. Since I don’t have all the info, I do my very best to reserve all judgment. If they’re cranky, there’s probably, more often than not, a legitimate reason for it ❤️

      Thank you again for adding your voice! I really enjoyed reading what you wrote. It gives me a lot to ponder 👏🏼👏🏼😊💖

      Autistic hugs back atcha! 🐙🐙. (Yep, the octopus came through 😊)

      Liked by 1 person

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