The Proper Response

“Why are you so cynical?”

Getting asked this question is probably one of the most annoying things on this earth. Why are you so happy? I’m pretty sure you can’t give me a satisfactory answer either. Fuck right off optimists, I don’t need any sunshine on my parade.

This year I found myself making a ton of jokes about my future suicide and death. I know, suicide isn’t something trivial to joke about — if someone I was close to told me they wanted to off themselves I’d probably go full hypocrite and dissuade them from doing so — but holy shit sometimes it feels so disgusting and horrible to be alive my entire existence just becomes a joke in my eyes. Have you ever cried so hard you started laughing at just how pathetic you are?

There’s just something very sick about the idea where you pour your entire heart out to someone describing whatever horrors you’re experiencing internally, only to be told that it’s “all in your head, stop thinking so much” or “you’re imagining things, lighten up”. I’ve heard these phrases so many times now that when I pick up the first syllables I just roll my eyes and shut the fuck up. How real must my pain and suffering be before it is valid in the eyes of others who are trying to offer some generic, vague notion of “moral support”? Do I need scars on my arms or self-inflicted bruises before anyone even attempts to believe anything I’m saying, despite me already shaking off all my pride by relaying this information like a snail fucking exploding out of its shell and lying belly-up: “PLEASE POUR SALT ON ME!” People don’t understand that sometimes what we’re looking for isn’t comfort or a ray of hope but just some goddamn understanding. No, “everyone else also feels the same way” doesn’t count — it in fact has the opposite effect because the receiver is now wondering how other people struggle with the same problems yet still have their lives in order.

So what should you say when someone lets you in and tells you about their demons?

Don’t fucking question them. If they feel that way then chances are nothing you say will change their mind. Instead tell them something neutral and unoffensive like “if you want to talk about it I’m here” or “lmao damn wanna dota?”

And people who are fucked up on the inside like I am — seek the kind of support that feels best for you. If compliments make your day, cool. If you just need a listening ear, fine. Just know that while support from your social circle can aid in getting your shit together the main effort comes from you as an individual. And I’m not the very best person to ask about that.

I think less about dying now, unless dying because of this mountain of schoolwork counts.

It’s a whole lot better than wanting to jump off a building.

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