Very little happened today, so I'm pleased to be able to bring you the following conversation. It has been edited for length and to remove information that could identify "Sarah" beyond me telling you that she is a friend from online. I expect to hear the word "revealing" in the comments once or twice.
Sarah: hey hanni
Sarah: how's you?
Sarah: like that?
Me: Nope. Full-on 9
Sarah: you're sad today...is it manageable?
Me: Yeah, by applying copious amounts of bourbon to the back of my throat.
Sarah: you don't drink
Sarah: so I guess yer up a creek
Me: And now you know why.
Sarah: how about some unmolested Kool-Aid?
Me: That's a start.
Me: I used alcohol like a self-aimed weapon.
Sarah: just once?
Me: More than once. A couple of times a month for six months.
Sarah: how long ago?
Me: I quit July 4, 1999.
Sarah: not so long ago
Sarah: were you drinking alone?
Sarah: did you make yourself sick?
Me: No and yes. Vomit a-plenty.
Sarah: ever pass out?
Sarah: better not to drink
Sarah: <--will never mess with your Kool-Aid again
Me: Thank you.
Me: Honestly though, I used it like a weapon--I was using it to injure myself--that's why I only drank hard stuff.
Sarah: you have issues my dear
Sarah: I mean, I know all about self destructive behavior
Sarah: but you take it to a new, very concrete, high
Sarah: i.e. the drinking
Sarah: i.e. not eating
Sarah: did you ever cut yourself when you were younger?
Me: Let's not forget the cutting.
Sarah: there we go
Sarah: did I peg that or what?
Me: Well done.
Sarah: thanks, I'd like to be wrong
Sarah: I've had a lot of friends who did that in high school and early college
Sarah: when did you stop?
Me: After my time in the hospital.
Sarah: you never mentioned that
Sarah: when was that?
Me: August 1996.
Me: 3 days, after I walked into the ER bleeding from the wrists, asking for help.
Sarah: 3 day hold is what it's referred to, no?
Me: I'm not entirely sure--I was a bit preoccupied.
Sarah: I'm sure it was
Sarah: what happened that time you cut your wrists?
Sarah: and before that, did you habitually cut yourself?
Me: Not *habitually*, necessarily, but there were a couple of incidents, where it happened almost idly.
Sarah: did they diagnose you as anything but depressed?
Sarah: personality "disorder"
Me: Not that I know of.
Sarah: so what do you do now?
Sarah: I mean, you're still depressed (that much is obvious)--what is it you do to punish yourself now? Is it just not eating?
Me: And sometimes punish myself with hunger.
Me: Control, control, control.
Sarah: and do you have it?
Sarah: but you aren't happy
Me: It's not about happy, it's about not doing real, direct harm.
Sarah: what would make you happy?
Me: I don't even know any more.
Sarah: me neither
Sarah: but I have my suspicions
Sarah: do you think that you might be able to fall in love? Do you even want to?
Me: I think I'm a failure who peaked at 14.
Me: I'd love to, but I think I'd be really bad at it.
Sarah: well, that's most of the world...they give it a shot anyways
Sarah: you're out of practice
Me: No, I think I'd be really bad at being in love because I'd just end up fucking it up somehow.
Me: My one and only ex, toward the end, pointed out that I probably never loved her, but was in love with the idea of loving her.
Sarah: like I said, that's most people in the world
Sarah: you aren't unique there
Me: If I'm not going to do it right, if I'm only going to end up hurting someone else--hurting myself is acceptable, hurting others is not--why should I even try?
Sarah: because that's life john...sorry to say its one big freaking experiment...sometimes you win, others lose...sometimes it's the other way around
Sarah: you roll with the punches and you judge it on the sum total
Sarah: but if you don't even play....you lose
Me: If I don't play, I lose. If I do play, I'm likely to lose. There has to be another option.
Sarah: sometimes playing makes it worthwhile--even if you know you're gonna lose
Me: Why would you undertake something if you know you're going to lose?
Sarah: because it's a worthwhile endeavor anyways...the chase is fun, it makes you feel alive, it may even make you happy for awhile, and there is always the hope that you might win
Me: It doesn't make me feel alive. It tends to make me wish I was dead.
Sarah: you've only done it once
Sarah: the first time for anything hurts like a bitch
Me: The chase, though.
Sarah: it's practice that helps make you immune to the pain
Sarah: how many times have you chased, in earnest?
Me: A couple. Fewer than five.
Sarah: yeah, well, that's not a lot love
Sarah: well, so you haven't rolled with enough punches to be any good at it
Me: Why do I have to try to get good at it?
Sarah: because you might eventually be happy
Me: Which is in and of itself scary.
Me: What, to be scared of happiness?
Me: Let's also as the idea that I'd have absolutely no idea of what to do if I won the chase.
Sarah: you've done it before
Me: I'm terrified of dating anyone because of my mother, too.
Me: It's true. My mother would interfere early and often with any kind of relationship.
Me: "Is she Catholic? When can I meet her? How did this start? When? Why?"...etc.
Sarah: so perhaps step one is to move outta da house
Me: I can't do that.
Sarah: you won't do that though
Me: It's not a "won't", it's a "can't".
Me: And that wouldn't really solve anything with regard to this.
Me: Ultimately, she wouldn't take it seriously.
Me: I know I won't get married until she's dead.
Sarah: are you serious? sheesh
Me: Yes I am.
Sarah: why is she so important in your adult life?
Me: Because to her I'm not an adult.
Sarah: but this is your life, your perception
Me: Because I'm afraid of her, just as I've always been.
Sarah: YOU ARE AN ADULT
Sarah: you need therapy
Sarah: I need therapy
Sarah: group discount
Me: Because fear of parental disapproval was, literally, beaten into me.
Sarah: me too
Sarah: *shrugs* but now I just hate them and live far away
Me: You're stronger than I am, then.
Me: I'm still afraid.
Sarah: move away, it helps
Sarah: I don't know what to tell you other than you need analysis
Sarah: and some conjones
Sarah: I say that with love
Sarah: believe it or not
Sarah: I like your journal and I so impressed that you've kept it up every damned day
Sarah: but when I read it, I am often left wondering why you don't develop things
Me: Go ahead. Which one is it, "Sucks", or "boring"?
Sarah: but I guess the journal is for you
Sarah: no, neither
Me: What things am I not developing?
Sarah: you allude to them
Sarah: and poof that's it
Me: Much of that's intentional.
Sarah: it's maddening
Me: Sorry. Comment on these things, or ask me when you see me.
Sarah: you tell me it's none of my business
Sarah: so it's still maddening
Me: My life may be an open book, but that doesn't mean I can't glue a couple of the pages together.
Sarah: you're special to me...as corny as that sounds
Sarah: but I want to kick you in the head most of the time
Me: That would make me go "Ow".
Sarah: and I want to kick you b/c you don't want to be happy
Sarah: makes me mad
Sarah: makes me feel like my worldview is constantly banging its head against a wall
Me: Have I said I don't want to be happy? Or am I just willing to settle for less?
Sarah: I think your less is the equiv of not happy
Me: Well, yeah.
Me: You see "Happy" as a C+, I see it as an A++.
Me: You think happiness is a baseline, something that anybody can have with little effort. I see it as a nigh-unreachable goal.
Sarah: but some people get A+ s
Me: Not many.
Sarah: but its there
Me: I know.
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2/26/2002 4:52 AM