Friday, October 30, 2015

It doesn't always rain here

Hi all,

I read the other day about a young trans lady, who'd had a disagreement with a journalist. Not so much, white is black, etc, but, perhaps a disappointment in the Trans tropes that were rolled out. Rolled out, on a seemingly all too frequent...umm... well, frequency. :-) Struggle. Dysphoria, Being trapped in the wrong body, etc.

Doesn't pretty much everyone struggle at some point? Yeah, we could play the Pain Game, or take the piss with a First World Problems meme, but I won't. A good mate of mine, who's not trans as far I know, still struggles with his depression. Through some coincidence, we both seemed to fall under the spell of the Black Dog at the same time. Whatever his reasons are - and while I expressed interest as a friend, I didn't pry - he's still not broken free of it.

A friend of Wee Man, he is out of school and on some serious pain medication, given his various disabilities. Not that they hold him back. He still gives life a bloody good go. He just has to watch he doesn't overreach, because that's when his illness gives him a kicking.

An on-line friend, she's signed off on the sick, following a nasty fall at work. The idea that she'll never be able to return to nursing, has deeply upset her. Much as I joke about an early retirement, it's another thing to be 'retired' and have to scrimp & save, to get by. The old joke of "as long as you've got your health, eh?" doesn't have quite the same ring to it.

The Ever Lovely Mrs J once had a job, that treated her so badly, she would cry on the Friday night, knowing she had to go in Monday. Mrs J does not cry easily. She is as tough as she is beautiful and clever. Quite a dangerous mix, but more on that another day :-) BTW, she quit that job. Money is not everything. Your health and mind are worth more. It wasn't easy with one wage, but it was worth it, to see her happy again.

Earlier this year, I met with an old school mate, who was bullied terribly at school. He has done well for himself and is a good man. I look back at those who picked on him, and they're living in a dead end town, doing very little. Little other than looking down the end of a pint of beer, or worrying where their future went (as one of them told me, not so long ago). Karma eh?

Where an I headed with this? Perhaps the trite phrase of Life is Pain. Okay, some of life, is pain. It reminds you that things hurt and hurt, if possible, is best escaped. We all struggle, but we keep going. Some of us are kind enough to help others, keep going. Play it forward. Be excellent to reach other. All the good stuff.

So, in a roundabout kinda way - and I don't mean traffic assistance or rotaries, for the American readers - everyone has crap they have to deal with. Sometimes, you just don't need to hear it.... or read about it, for that matter. That's not to belittle a person's journey, ignore what they've done, or dismiss what they're going through. But, our pain, if you want to call it that, may shape us, but it doesn't define us. We, all of us, I think, are more than sob stories or hard luck cases. We grow, we learn and, sometimes, we get to put it behind us and live. So yeah, ease up on the boo-hoo and if you're going to tell a person's story, start with letting them tell you.

Take care,
Lynn

2 comments:

  1. Well, that was a bit of a heavy post, but a very interesting one nonetheless. I've struggled with a bit of shit myself in life, probably the worst thing being OCD (a form of mental torture I wouldn't wish on my worst enemy). Thankfully, I seem to have gotten that mostly under control - it's something I endeavour to keep on a very short, very tight lease these days.

    Interesting to hear of your old school friend: the one who was bullied. From some of the things you said in the paragraph about him, I gather you're still in contact with at least some of the people who gave him crap growing up. Depressingly enough, as I may or may not have said here before, I've seen some people defend bullying online (one particularly odious individual I came across considered it useful for "enforcing social norms" - shudder), though, like your friend's former tormentors, none of them have come across as terribly happy, well-adjusted individuals, or, for that matter, people who've accomplished much with their lives (a lot of them tend to be supporters of hate movements, and/or self-proclaimed "alpha males" who seem to spend all their time bragging online about what awesome lives they supposedly have (but probably don't if they're always on the Internet!)).

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    1. Yeah, I'm afraid so. Sometimes, things are like that. You have to post the good, the bad and - if I've taken a snap - the ugly ;-)

      Sorry to hear about your OCD. In the UK, it's one of those terms, which people will use lightly. "Just sorting these out. You know I'm a bit OCD" But when the OCD really kicks in, it's not mildly amusing, it can be very bad. I hope your's doesn't get to those levels.

      Out of the people who gave J a hard time, I know only of one of them (I'll refer to him as P). P was very much on the fringes of it, compared to some of the s***s who gave J abuse - punching, kicking, verbal, etc. J said he rolled his eyes when one of the kids from his old school, turned up at the new one. He'd hoped that that lad wouldn't attend, but he did. I can't say that school was a barrel of laughs for me, but compared to J, it was a walk in the park.

      P, himself, moved to a northern town away from here and worked on public transport. He said he hated it, and has only recently moved to back to the area. About a year ago, he sent me a PM on Facebook and said "You've got a good job. Can you have a word with my lad, and try and explain why you shouldn't f*** about at school." Well, I tried to play down the job (it's not bad pay), because I didn't want to sound like a dick. I sent off a positive message to his son and tried hard not to be a patronising adult. I know when I was a teenager, I really did know it all. Sadly, through a series of unfortunate events, I kept meeting people who not only knew more than me, but were frequently right and I was wrong. How upsetting! :-)

      So, if there's anything I can draw from P's comments and his occasional posts on Facebook, he regrets. Not in a massive, depressive kinda way - I wouldn't wish that on many - but he does wish he'd worked harder.

      No time for 'alphas' or on-line haters. They can all do one. :-D

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