Sometimes I write stream of consciousness / intoxicated, sometimes I’m perfectly sober but have thoughts that I can’t arrange very well…
Anyway, these are replies to comments on a previous entry, Mixed Metaphors
1a. Umm no, they didn’t kill Plato, he died of natural causes…
referring to this thing I said
Plato’s cave was the first Matrix story, wasn’t it? I don’t have a reference handy right now but I think they killed him.
By “him” I meant the man from the cave.
The returning prisoner, whose eyes have become acclimated to the light of the sun, would be blind when he re-enters the cave… the others would infer from the returning man’s blindness that the journey out of the cave had harmed him and that they should not undertake a similar journey. Socrates concludes that the prisoners, if they were able, would therefore reach out and kill anyone who attempted to drag them out of the cave. – Wikipedia
1b. It’s perfectly normal for a person to be fed up of all the bullshit from the world and the people that they just choose to just be left alone… current story of my life after being diagnosed with depression and PTSD last year, so I object to your opinion of yourself being insane for choosing to be left alone.
The main reason that I think I’m insane is because of emotional / cognitive dissonance that I can sense there. If I wholeheartedly and whole-mindedly wanted to be left alone, I wouldn’t feel insane. Even though I’m objectively much better off without the people I used to spend time with, there is an intense loneliness and hunger for love and companionship that is always there. When it comes to the surface it’s very painful. And even when it isn’t piercing, I always know it’s there. It won’t be satisfied until I find a community where I fit in. A real community, not online –
There’s one advantage to having mostly online friends, and it’s one that nobody ever talks about:
They demand less from you.
Sure, you emotionally support them, comfort them after a breakup, maybe even talk them out of a suicide. But knowing someone in meatspace adds a whole, long list of annoying demands. Wasting your whole afternoon helping them fix their computer. Going to funerals with them. Toting them around in your car every day after theirs gets repossessed by the bank. Having them show up unannounced when you’re watching your favorite show, then mentioning how hungry they are until you finally give them half your sandwich…
[And online], you can respond when you feel like it. You can measure your words. You can pick and choose which questions to answer. The person on the other end can’t see your face, can’t see you get nervous, can’t detect when you’re lying. You have almost total control and as a result that other person never sees past your armor, never sees you at your worst, never knows the embarrassing little things about yourself that you can’t control. Gone are the common quirks, humiliations and vulnerabilities that real friendships are built on… You never get to really be yourself, and that’s a very lonely feeling. – Jason Pargin
All kidding and arrogance aside, I’m a much deeper person than almost everyone around me, and hardly anyone is interested in exploring ideas with me. Trying to spend time with most people and talk about the things they’re interested in feels like constantly slouching so I won’t be taller than everyone around me and stick out (something I used to literally do when I was young and growing earlier than other kids).
As for where I expect to find this community, that’d only be abroad, which is where I’m definitely headed in the near future if I can get my way at all.
2a. There’s this comment I read recently about the internet making it easy for people to find peers who share the same idea, therefore triggering both a positive and a negative: for one, internet became an avenue for finding like-minded individuals, but at the same time, it has made us stubborn to the point of being inflexible. The grey has become strangely much more black and white, in an us vs you extreme kind of way.
Yes, completely agree with this observation, and of social media in its present form being bad for society in general – also mentioned in the Jason Pargin article above. And touched on here and probably a lot of other important articles that I can’t find right now.
2b. Perhaps there’s no wrong in asking what you find satisfactory in something negative – of why you are with people who smoke incessantly, or why you stay with people who you feel despise you. Or why people stay in the city when it’s clearly less congested back home. But always gauge the why – and whether it’s worth it. People have become inflexible nowadays because it’s easier to leave and find something new because the internet gives us the world. But maybe something old could work if only we understand the worth and be flexible to work it out.
The specific whys of both those things were different, but in general it was about having some love between myself and the people involved. Ultimately though, I realized that the circumstances and the mismatch of needs and wants were just terrible for everyone and not fixable.
I don’t think leaving is easy for most people. It certainly wasn’t easy for me. And the “whys” are warped by society – the things we’re taught to want.
(Ex. I have this theory that OFWs are glorified in popular Filipino culture because, and only because, of the additional revenue brought in by these workers. When a person begins working abroad with a negative balance – with financial obligations back home and no extra money for savings – they often become indentured servants for life. If an OFW worked abroad and came back with capital to invest in a company or start their own, that is something they can build and keep and pass on to their children. Unlike when they can only send a salary and have it spent and gone. I don’t know why the government, or whatever machination propagates that model of OFW, would rather keep it that way. Not just because of the welfare of their citizens, but because Filipino-made companies would ultimately bring more sustainable economic benefit than relying on streams of foreign cash. I suppose it’s just shortsightedness.)
The city is seductive, the city’s exciting. Supposedly everything that’s worthwhile is there. The jobs you can get, the people you can meet, the events you can attend. I don’t really buy into it anymore. The price is too high. Not the money, the human misery. Everyone who went there thinking it was the only way to get what they needed. Like the top 4 are the only universities worth attending. Like the people you can meet there are the only ones worth spending time with. Like the jobs you can get there are the only ones worth having. The gadgets. The titles. The tickets worth an entire family’s yearly meal budget.
It isn’t worth it to me anymore. I think the answer is to develop the provinces, decentralize economic and social power, or maybe I should say coolness. Make it somehow cool to live in places where the air’s still breathable. Maybe they could put up clubs, I don’t know. I don’t understand people anymore. I never have, but even much less now, the more and more I try.
2c. You may have gone through relationships thinking you’re not getting what you’re due.
Not for most of them. I think the last one really did a number on me. We both had many deep-seated issues that made it nearly impossible for us to understand each other. I don’t know what they all were, certainly I can’t ever know what hers were, but we obviously both had an immense fear of abandonment that manifested itself in different ways. (Usually through lashing out from me, withdrawal from her.) The issues were all compounded by the images we had of each other from the beginning of our relationship, which turned out not to be accurate of our real selves. (For example, she thought I was mature and capable, and I thought she was naturally warm and caring; I am nowhere near as mature or capable as she thought I was, and later on I observed that many of the kind things she did for people, including me, were driven by feelings of obligation and drained her, and often she resented the people she’d done them for.)
So it wasn’t that I thought I wasn’t getting my due, and that was the reason why I left – but that there was a fundamental disconnection that no amount of talking could fix. If we’re speaking in terms of dues, neither of us was getting our due.
Anyway… Thinking about everything that went wrong with the last one, and seeing it all more clearly, is partly what shaped my decision about my next relationship – I don’t feel that she idealizes me; I think the image she has of me is close to the truth. I also don’t feel that she’s mysterious – obviously there are parts of her I don’t yet know, but I don’t feel as if any of those are beyond reach, given enough time. Although, both of us still have trouble being expressive. We’ve broken down a lot of walls but I think I’m still keeping things from force of habit. (Or maybe I just like the feeling of this space being separate from my real life.) It all feels so different.
I’m not exactly sure if I made things clearer for anybody or just muddied the waters even more, but this is what I have tonight.